When I first heard that British national treasure Ian McKellen and other British national treasure Derek Jacobi were going to star in a TV comedy about an old, bickering gay couple—and that it was going to be called Vicious (short for “Vicious Old Queens”)—I found myself caught up in a giddy frisson. Having watched all seven episodes of the first season, that frisson has dissipated. This is not the show it was supposed to be—or is it?

The most important night in New York theater is nearly upon us: the Tony Awards, this year hosted by the very capable Hugh Jackman. While the nominees busily attend press events, luncheons and cocktail parties, all the while giving showstopping performances eight times a week, the rest of us get to revisit a year of sometimes excellent (Hedwig!), sometimes forgettable (Big Fish, anyone?) live theater. Below we pick our favorites to take home the trophy in the ceremony’s top 12 categories.

I’ll admit it: Most years Martin Luther King Day means one thing to me—a three-day weekend. But this year things are different. Feeling inspired by the 50th anniversary celebrations of the “I Have a Dream” speech back in August, I did some browsing around Mediander for Dr. King and other topics related to his legacy. I assumed the Connects page for MLK Day would be pretty straightforward: It connects to Washington’s birthday (duh) and federal holidays in the U.S. (more duh), but there was one name I definitely didn’t expect to see—Jesse Helms.

Every holiday season, Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” dominates department store playlists. It also gets covered with increasing frequency by artists who either slow it down to escape direct comparisons or make game attempts at matching Mimi’s vocal stylings. But since no such attempt will ever rival the original, I’ve given myself the task of finding the second-best recording of Carey’s Christmas classic.

You’ve watched the Homeland finale, read all the recaps and posted your last post about it on Facebook. So now what? You don’t even know when season four kicks off, so how do you get through life without the promise of spending time with Mandy Patinkin’s beard and Claire Danes’s ugly crying every Sunday? The only answer I’ve come up with is this: Read Andrew Kaplan’s Homeland prequel novel, Carrie’s Run.

As a Nightmare Before Christmas purist (dare I say, originalist), I believe there’s a right time to watch this movie—and it is not Halloween. I know, I know. Disney re-releases it every October, and sales of the soundtrack peak around All Hallows’ Eve. And don’t get me wrong, I was just as excited as everyone else to mark the film’s 20th anniversary this past October. But I prefer to watch Jack Skellington’s holiday misadventures in something approximating real time, and all the action takes place during the 54 days between Halloween and Christmas.