Entertainment

Well Slung

Slingbox 350 and 500

Since 2008, Slingbox has served as media middleman for TV-addicted travelers. Capitalizing on under-used, over-priced cable service was great at first, but standard definition streaming is something not even the lowest rent smartphones do anymore. The Slingbox 350 and 500 ($180+) give you your fix in full 1080p HD. The Slingbox 350 ($180) is the...

The promised land of sports and whatever

Grantland Quarterly

Good writers (if we should say so ourselves) respect good writing. Grantland, one of our favorite publications, certainly in sports and culture if not in general, catches our eyes with intuition, integrity and irreverence. Print may be in bad shape, but it still feels right to hold good journalism between your fingers (your keyboard doesn’t...

Lights, Camera, Beef!

MoB | Masterbeef Theater: 10 Best Beef Movie Scenes

We promised to leave no steak unturned during our month of beef, and we’re men of our word. As it happens, beef’s got a thespian side that The Academy repeatedly fails to acknowledge. Our budget for gold statues was blown on jerky and skillets, but that won’t stop us from proposing a new award category...

Missiles not included

James Bond 007 Miniature Vehicles Set

Skyfall is about to touch down in theaters, which means the promotional tie-in machine is flipping every switch on its weapons panel. Still, the James Bond 007 Miniature Vehicles Set ($60) is an interesting keepsake for Fleming fans, featuring eight miniature die-cast models of select Bond vehicles from the 22-film series. While we wouldn’t lump...

In tune, outsourced

MacKenzie & Marr Guitars

Guitar lovers will want to own MacKenzie & Marr acoustic ($1,000+) after just a few strums. Unfortunately, unless your jam session buddy already has one in his basement, you’ll have to buy one of the company’s hand-carved lady magnets before plucking a single note. It sounds strange, but the guys behind these axes decided to...

Big things have small beginnings

Prometheus 4-Disc Collector’s Edition Blu-ray

Ridley Scott’s perpendicularly plot-lined meta-prequel to Alien may have polarized fanboys, but no one can deny the beauty and complexity of Prometheus’s planetary vistas. While HD digital downloads have already been dropping jaws for quite some time, the upcoming Blu-ray release promises to also answer a few of your lingering questions. In addition to the...

Let It Be, Indeed

The Beatles Remasters 180-Gram Vinyl Box Set

Forget the CD, forget iTunes remastered. This November, the highly anticipated The Beatles Remastered 180-Gram Vinyl Box Set brings the stereophonic goodness lands and with it 14 albums remastered in their original glory on 180-gram, audiophile vinyl. That’s the original 12 UK releases along with the US Magical Mystery Tour and Past Masters, Volumes One...

Big Specs Come in Little Packages

Falcon Northwest Tiki Micro Gaming Tower

Gaming towers are synonymous with gigantic frames, furnace heat output and throbbing jet-engine rackets. If you’re the subtle, nuanced gamer — or you just want to attract as little attention as possible while raiding in WOW — the Falcon Northwest Tiki Micro Gaming Tower ($1,800+) should be a prime option. The Tiki is a veritable...

Smash Hit

The Avengers Blu-ray

The superhero movie of the century is now ready to blow up your living room. Naturally, you’d expect top notch audio and video quality, and the Blu-ray version ($20) won’t disappoint — especially for 3D fans looking to recreate the theater experience at home. There’s also plenty of intriguing extras to enhance the second go...

Shoot to the clouds

Canon Project 1709

It seems like everybody’s jumping on the social media bandwagon (some more logically than others). Canon’s decided to take a shot too with their curiously named, cloud-based storage service Project 1709. Currently in beta testing, this online photo warehouse places heavy emphasis on UI and sports the ever-popular tile layout (cough, Flickr) for quick viewing,...

Old man take a look at my book

Waging Heavy Peace by Neil Young

While the nickname never really made much sense, the simple fact that Neil Young was called the “godfather of grunge” in the 1990s proved the influential and staying power of an artist who first came on the scene in 1966. In the upcoming Waging Heavy Peace ($17), a 66 year-old Young talks about his early...

Keep Calm and Pedal On

The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France

Professional cycling has been brought in to the limelight lately, and what’s being exposed isn’t pretty. With no shortage of content, Olympic gold medalist Tyler Hamilton and New York Times bestselling author Daniel Coyle co-authored The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All Costs ($17)....

Not just a fantasy

NFL Game Rewind

If your fandom/fantasy addiction borders on the insane, NFL Game Rewind ($35+) will only steepen a downward spiral of screaming at the television. The online service allows subscribers to replay any game from the 2009-2011 and current regular season on their computer or tablet. If you only bleed blank & blank colors, you can also...

A man in full

Mortality by Christopher Hitchens

While handling success with grace and humility is a rare trait, the truer measure of a man is how he deals with adversity. In facing the ultimate travail, one’s certain death, Christopher Hitchens displays a stoicism worthy of Marcus Aurelius in Mortality ($14). A collection of his last essays for Vanity Fair before his death...

That is a tasty box set

Tarantino XX Blu-ray Set

Get your fix for random philosophical dialogue and extreme violence with the newly announced Tarantino XX Blu-ray set. True fans might recognize a bit of double-dipping on the part of the studios here, since the new collection is essentially an augmented version of the Quentin Tarantino Collection that was available only overseas. The new XX...

Briefings: Brisket’s Better Brother, Rolex, Chess Cheaters, the A Train and Festbier

The most important excerpt from this week’s Briefings, which we ask that you read if you have time for nothing else: “Perhaps more importantly, did you know that the 18th century Hungarian engineer, Wolfgang von Kempelen, made a phony mechanical chess master to woo Empress Maria Theresa Walburga Amalia Christina of Austria?” But you can’t...

There is a war in this forest

Fear and Desire Blu-Ray Edition

Fear and Desire, celebrated director/producer Stanley Kubrick’s first attempt at film making, is a must-have for film aficionados. The movie follows four soldiers caught behind enemy lines as they battle, physically and psychologically, to return to safety. Directed, produced, shot and edited by a 24-year-old Kubrick, the Howard Sackler screenplay is intriguing in its examination...

Not your average day job

In-Depth: No Easy Day

We bandy the title “hero” about to describe entertainers, sports figures, politicians, anyone who excels or surmounts significant adversity. The true definition, however, fits a much smaller number. No Easy Day ($16), the first-person account of the SEAL Team 6 raid on an Abbottabad compound that killed Osama bin Laden, breaks the traditional silence of...

The book before you book

The New York Times, 36 Hours: 125 Weekends in Europe

We hope savvy travelers have finished trekking their way through 150 Weekends in the USA & Canada ($25), because more trips are on the way with The New York Times, 36 Hours: 125 Weekends in Europe ($26). As you’d suspect, this follow-up compiles the same excellent “36 Hour Departure” travel articles as its predecessor —...

The real audio book

How Music Works

“Without music, life would be a mistake.” Nietzsche said that. “Chillin’ by the fire while we eatin’ fondue.” Bieber said that. But no matter what you think of the current auditory scene, it’s impossible to argue with the power of music. In How Music Works ($21), David Byrne — the former Talking Heads front man...

Brit Lit (Wit)

Hello Goodbye Hello

Oh, the Brits. They’re funny, they like tea, they just finished hosting the Olympics — and if you’ve sunk your teeth into Brit Lit, then you know they write decent books. Craig Brown’s Hello Goodbye Hello is [in our best accent] bloody well clever. The book is, simply, 101 daisy-chained true encounters between the rich,...

No longer Unobtanium

Avatar Blu-ray 3D Collector’s Edition

If you’ve made the jump to 3D TV, the visually stunning Avatar Blu-ray 3D Collector’s Edition ($28) should be on your must-have list. This edition gives you all three dimensions of the the Pocahontas remake, which is finally available outside of Panasonic 3D TV bundles this October. Unfortunately, the visual orgasm comes only in the...

No fluency required

Salumi: The Craft of Italian Dry Curing

While there are endless options for flexing your culinary muscles, making your own dry cured meats is one of the best ways of calling out those hacks on Iron Chef that we can think of. Using the secret ingredient? Try making it b$^&*$#s. Authors Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn know a thing or two about...

The end of buyer's remorse?

YBUY

YBUY.com is a new Netflix-like service for gadgets that lets members “try” an array of home electronics before committing to purchasing them. Simply sign up for the $25 per month subscription service and then pick any product offered on the site. YBUY will then mail it to you free of charge, and allow you to...

Nowhere to hide

Spy The Lie

It’s estimated that — on average — a person tells a lie anywhere from one to ten times per day. That’s hard for us to believe, since we always speak the truth. In Spy the Lie ($16), former CIA officers Philip Houston, Michael Floyd and Susan Carnicero explain how to spot the difference between truth...

Tour de Brute Force

The Raid: Redemption

America is no stranger to epic blockbuster action movies — hell, we invented the genre. But one viewing of the Indonesian film The Raid: Redemption ($20) left us questioning Hollywood’s chops as the king of adrenaline. Its premise is beautifully streamlined: an elite squad of 20 SWAT members is sent in to take down Jakarta’s...

Get 'er Done

The Art of Fixing Things

The best handymen acquire their skills over a lifetime of tinkering, but if you’re all thumbs 365 days of the year consider The Art of Fixing Things ($11) by Lawrence E. Pierce a crash course in honey-do-list competence. Its 168 pages provide easy-to-follow tips supplemented by helpful photos in areas like automotive, appliances, household and...

Not lost in translation

Guide to the Foreign Japanese Kitchen

Traditional Japanese cooking can be incredibly daunting if you’re not, well, Japanese. Moé Takemura helps confused Westerners and Japanese expats alike in her Guide to the Foreign Japanese Kitchen ($49), which thoroughly and simply details the necessities of Japanese cuisine from ingredients to silverware. Each of the 30 meals in the book is laid out...

It's still not safe to go in the water

Jaws Blu-Ray Edition

Real, life-affirming creations of art that come along at the right place at the right time to transform culture as we know it are… well, rare. Jaws is such a masterpiece, and one that has captivated audiences for nearly forty years. The film struck a chord through cutting edge effects, a genius score, and of...

The master, remastered

Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection

Hitchcock’s role in the evolution of film needs no introduction, but his movies have been in desperate need of a little TLC in the age of high-def. Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection ($299) is poised to be the damn-near-definitive Hitchcock release, updating the previous DVD version to glorious 1080p with DTS-HD Master Audio. Specifically, the...

Responsible Read

The Responsible Company by Yvon Chouinard & Vincent Stanley

Pathos — that’s relevant experience and credibility for you non-rhetorically adroit folk — is everything when it comes to how-to books. That’s why The Responsible Company: What We’ve Learned From Patagonia’s First 40 Years ($20) gets two green thumbs up from us. Written by Patagonia’s founder and owner Yvon Chouinard and the co-editor of the...

The escape artist's handbook

Work Your Way Around the World

Ever felt the urgent need for an extended change of scenery? It can be done. If you are looking to drop off the grid but aren’t Bruce Wayne rich, you’ll need to figure out how to eat along the way. That’s where Work Your Way Around the World ($17) can help. Already in its 15th...

The best watch site just got better

Click: Hodinkee

If you like your watches as much as we do then you’ll want to point your browsers over to the new HODINKEE. A drastic departure from the previous design, the daily dose of all that’s great in wristwatches has introduced an all-new site complete with magazine-style cover images, beautiful typography (glad to see someone still...

Still talking about nothing. This time, on the road.

Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee

With the trappings of pure genius — coffee, interesting cars, and Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David — Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, is such a refreshing take on comedy that we think it might just be one of the best things we’ve watched since the first season of Louie. Entirely free of plot, of course,...

Put that summer heat in perspective

A Labyrinth of Kingdoms

We’ve already spoiled you for choice with summer reading choices, but we’re generous when it comes to quality literature. A Labyrinth of Kingdoms: 10,000 Miles Through Islamic Africa ($20) by Steve Kemper catalogues the real-life epic of Heinrich Barth, a 19th century explorer who ranks among Stanley and Livingstone but is virtually unknown outside of...