Square Zair Pair
This adorable picture book is a perfect tale for children and adults alike. Square Zair Pair is a wonderful LGBT allegory that takes place in a magical land where cute creatures known as the Zairs live. Zairs come in two shapes, round and square, and do all things in pairs, always one round with one square. But one day when two square Zairs pair for the first time, the village rejects them before learning different pairs of Zairs make their village stronger. Told in Seussian style by writer Jase Peeples with captivating art by former Disney artist Christine Knopp, Square Zair Pair is a heartwarming tale for anyone who believes in the beauty of diversity. Grab a copy of your own on Amazon and listen to a sample of the book read by Samantha Newark, the original voice of Jem from Jem and the Holograms, below.
Simon Curtis, Super 8-Bit Heart
Electro-pop performer Simon Curtis is back with a new pulse-pounding album Super 8-Bit Heart — a souped-up rerelease of his debut album, 8-Bit Heart, which took the Internet by storm in 2010 with more than half a million downloads. The collection of Technicolor tracks is the perfect fuel to move your feet and includes standouts like "Beat Drop," "Delusional," and "Super Psycho Love." Level up with a listen on Spotify or download the full album on iTunes.
If you love bears, you’ll love The Revenant, which features a real, live grizzly attacking a bearded Leonardo DiCaprio in the early-19th-century wilderness of North America. An equally hairy Tom Hardy serves as the principal antagonist, fur trapper John Fitzgerald, as he seeks to kill his injured fellow for the sake of the hunting party’s expediency. Critics have hailed DiCaprio in his role as Hugh Glass, which is based on a real-life man and his story of survival. See it in all its furry, hairy, grisly glory in theaters this weekend.
American Idol has lost its must-see TV status over the past few seasons, but you’ll probably want to tune in this year for the singing competition’s farewell. The final season began airing this week and will continue next Wednesday, with auditions in Philadelphia, and Thursday, with hopefuls trying out in Denver and Little Rock. Harry Connick Jr., Jennifer Lopez, and Keith Urban are back as judges, and some former Idols, such as Clay Aiken, Ruben Studdard, and Lee DeWyze, are helping in the search for contestants. Idol’s on at 8 p.m./7 p.m. Central on Fox; see the full season’s schedule here.
David Bowie, ★
David Bowie's 28th album, ★, is released today ― the same day as the legend's 69th birthday. Reviews for ★ are glowing, not surprising since the ageless rocker has never lost his edge, nor an ear for mind-blowing music. Bowie also just released the video for the beautifully downbeat "Lazarus," the second release off ★. "Lazarus" is a more conventional song than the first single, the 10-minute long "Blackstar" (get it?). Both videos share themes of medical trauma, living blindly, and convulsive dancing.
This weekend William H. Macy slips back onto the barstool of Frank Gallagher, the hard-drinking father of six, in the Showtime comedy Shameless. Set on the South Side of Chicago and based on the British dramedy of the same name, the series is an award-winning depiction of a working-class family whose children (including a gay teen, Ian) are learning to raise themselves amid the reality of an erratic and often-absent father. Does Macy have no shame? Find out Sunday, when Shameless kicks off its sixth season. Watch the teaser below.
Golden Globe Awards
The Golden Globes ceremony has become reliably more lively than the Oscars — for one thing, many of the celebs have been drinking — and this year Ricky Gervais returns as host, so you can count on him to puncture a few egos in hilarious fashion. And of course, you’ll want to see what awards go to the numerous nominees from LGBT-inclusive films and TV shows, such as Carol, The Danish Girl, Grandma, Transparent, and Orange Is the New Black. The ceremony will be televised live on NBC Sunday at 8 p.m. Eastern/5 p.m. Pacific, with a red carpet preshow an hour beforehand.