Posts by Marty Kaplan

This UFO Changes Everything

This originally appeared in the Forward and is republished with permission. “Look at that thing, dude!” A hundred miles off the coast of San Diego, two Navy fighter pilots on a Super Hornets training mission spot a whitish, oval-shaped aircraft of some kind flying on an unearthly trajectory at crazy… More

The President of Stranger Things

A full moon ambushed me the other morning. It was pasted on the sky like a crafts project, too flat and too burnt orange, and too close to Beverly and La Brea, to be real. I wasn’t, How beautiful! I was, How strange. How strange there’s a four-and-a-half billion-year-old rock… More

My iPhone is my Egypt

What is your Egypt? The people, the food and the storytelling are what I love most about the Passover seder I go to, but I also really like the updates to the ritual. We spill drops of wine as we name the ten Biblical plagues, but we count off ten… More

Good News About Bad News

Everyone knows TV political journalism failed us during the 2016 campaign. Everyone knows TV news was clueless about Donald Trump voters and blue states swinging red. Everyone knows anchors let lying candidates roll them. Everyone knows TV coverage hyped the horse race and gave issues the cold shoulder. Everyone knows… More

Searching for Truth in an Age of Lies

Back in the day, Truth began with a capital T, and it came straight from God. Then science had a long run with it. The Enlightenment. Good times. But modernity was no piece of cake for truth. All that everything-is-relative business was shattering. As for post-modernity, let’s just say that… More

Hollywood Meets the Sustainable Development Goals

Why did UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon travel to Los Angeles last month to pitch the Sustainable Development Goals to a roomful of entertainment industry writers and producers? What motivated scores of Hollywood’s top show runners, as well as executives from 13 studios and networks, to head to Norman and Lyn… More

Are We Better Than This?

If you weren’t whiplashed, heartsick, nauseated, outraged and exhausted last week, you weren’t paying attention. Within the span of 24 hours, we were pummeled by horrifying images and unbearable grief — nothing as awful as personally enduring it, but real and real-time enough to scar our spirits, and to put… More

How to Tragedy

This is what you do when it all goes to hell again. You casually turn the television on while the coffee water boils, but the news punches you in the gut and takes your breath away. You instantly revise the whole history of the world in order to make the… More