Arts & Culture

Arts & culture

For fans who have dreamed about the return of Captain Jean-Luc Picard to Star Trek, actor Patrick Stewart might as well borrow his character's classic catchphrase and say, "Make it so."

It's a role that he hasn't stepped into since 2002, and fans are elated.

There's a type of orchid that resembles a female wasp. And in rare occasions, it will attract a male wasp to pollinate the flower.

That's the image on the cover of Caoilinn Hughes' new book, Orchid and the Wasp. But the relationship represents something heavier in Hughes' novel.

"So I was using this as a way to explore the relationship between the exploited and the exploiter," Hughes says. "And ask the question is it really exploitation if the loser isn't aware of what they're losing?"

Cary Grant. Katharine Hepburn. Spencer Tracy.

They were movie stars immortalized by "the golden age" of Hollywood during the mid-20th century, representing fame and beauty.

Behind the glossy glamour, the stars were also connected by something else: a man named Scotty Bowers who worked at a small gas station at the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Van Ness — the epicenter of Tinseltown's covert sexual underground.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Sand. It's everywhere, even in places you don't expect.

Tom Lehrer famously said that satire became obsolete when Henry Kissinger won the Nobel Peace Prize. And yet here we are, still struggling to exaggerate the follies of power until power can't get around us. Horror has much the same resilience. As terrifying as the world becomes, we still turn to imagined terrors to try and make sense of it.

If you missed the news on Monday, former President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden were spotted dining out at a Washington D.C. cafe, rekindling their Oval Office "bromance" over sandwiches and fennel salad.

But there's also word of another meeting between the two former running mates, in which they team up to [checks notes] solve a murder.

Updated at 8:40 a.m. ET

Chinese authorities are razing one of the Beijing studios of dissident artist Ai Weiwei. He said that demolition crews showed up without advance warning, and have begun the process of tearing down the studio.

Ai has been a longtime critic of the government, and on Saturday, he began posting videos to his Instagram feed of the studio's destruction. "Farewell," Ai wrote. "They started to demolish my studio 'Zuoyuo' in Beijing with no precaution."

Last week was a momentous one for the future of genetically engineered foods, both in the U.S. and in Europe. On July 24, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the Impossible Burger, an all-veggie burger that "bleeds" and sizzles just like meat.

A Rearranging World In 'The Third Hotel'

Aug 4, 2018

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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Okay, so I'm just gonna lay the nut of this out for you right at the beginning. The protagonist of Edgar Cantero's new novel, This Body's Not Big Enough For Both Of Us, is A.Z. Kimrean, a private detective. And A.Z. Kimrean the private detective is/are two different people — Adrian Kimrean and Zooey Kimrean — both inhabiting the same body.

Uzo Aduba has won an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series and an Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series — but what's really amazing is that she won those awards for the same role in the same show. She plays Suzanne Warren, an inmate better known as "Crazy Eyes" in the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black.

Since Aduba plays "Crazy Eyes" we've invited her to answer three questions about private eyes.

Click the audio link above to see how she does.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

In the 1980s, when comedian Lucille Ball was in her final years, she was approached by her hometown in upstate New York. They asked how she'd like to see her legacy preserved.

Writer and artist Emil Ferris won three Eisner Awards — the highest award in mainstream comics — for her graphic novel My Favorite Thing is Monsters. It's a huge tome, full of inky, scratchy drawings done in ballpoint pen, ranging from loose sketches to lovingly rendered covers of pulp horror magazines.

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DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

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