Star Wars ended the decade on a rough note. At least it had Babu Frik.

Without its penchant for creating beloved characters, Star Wars is nothing but a basic tale of good versus evil. And as a family-friendly franchise, it’s less than nothing if some of those characters aren’t destined to become appealing toys and widely shareable memes.

Such characters are often droids or aliens used for comic relief, adding levity to what can be a tense action-adventure story. Unlike other mass-appeal mascots, from Scooby-Doo’s Scrappy-Doo to Frozen’s Olaf to Despicable Me’s Minions to even past Star Wars creations like the Ewoks or Jar-Jar Binks, Star Wars’ most recent marketable …

Pompeo: Trump doesn’t want to bomb Iran’s cultural sites. Trump: Yes I do.

Mere hours after President Donald Trump posted a tweet threatening to commit war crimes by launching military strikes against cultural sites in Iran, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo went on the Sunday morning TV news shows to do damage control. But his efforts were unpersuasive, in part because within a matter of hours Trump demolished them.

The disconnect between what Pompeo said during his media tour and what his boss said hours later was an especially stark illustration of the Trump administration’s complete lack of credibility.

Worryingly, this credibility deficiency is on public display at a time when Pompeo …

John Bolton says he’ll testify in Trump’s impeachment trial if subpoenaed

John Bolton, the former national security adviser, announced Monday that he’d be willing to testify at the Senate’s impeachment trial for President Donald Trump — if the Senate subpoenas him.

“During the present impeachment controversy, I have tried to meet my obligations both as a citizen and as former National Security Advisor,” Bolton wrote on a website for his PAC. “I have concluded that, if the Senate issues a subpoena for my testimony, I am prepared to testify.”

The prospect that Bolton might testify is tantalizing for Democrats. He ran the National Security Council during the key period in …

What is private equity, and why is it killing everything you love?

In July 2010, Doug Lowenstein, CEO of lobbying group the Private Equity Council, wrote a letter to PBS NewsHour after a segment it had aired on the private equity industry. He noted some “concerns” the group had with the show’s piece, including that it had ignored “hundreds of examples of PE success stories.” His chosen example: Toys R Us, which had been bought out by a trio of firms in 2005.

“[Y]ou don’t report that Toys ‘R Us was saved from likely bankruptcy by PE owners, that it has more employees working for it than it did before it …

9 winners and one really big loser from the 2020 Golden Globes

The 77th annual Golden Globe Awards were a slightly more staid affair than usual. Sure, despite host Ricky Gervais’s requests that winners not give political speeches, lots and lots of the speeches were political in nature, and yeah, plenty of people (from Gervais to award winner Joaquin Phoenix) tossed out bleeped curse words. But if you were looking for the fiery excitement of past Globes ceremonies, this one didn’t offer much. The winners were largely well-behaved, there were few surprise wins, and even Gervais was on better behavior than usual.

Indeed, the host’s opening monologue set the tone for the …

Here’s the full list of 2020 Golden Globes winners (updating live)

It’s time to crown the winners of the 2020 Golden Globes. The 77th annual installment of the Globes will be awarded tonight, January 5, 2020, on NBC beginning at 8 pm Eastern. Comedian Ricky Gervais will host the show.

Administered by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), the Golden Globes honor achievement in both television and film (usually, those spheres of entertainment are recognized separately). The awards show also signifies the beginning of Hollywood’s awards season, which will culminate next month with the Oscars on February 9.

One of the biggest stories of the 2020 Globes is Netflix’s huge …