Emily Nussbaum and her figurative language….

Reading time: Less than 1 minute

I like to share interesting pieces of figurative language I encounter in my reading. I write today about a series of metaphors from American writer Emily Nussbaum….

I like writers who are funny. Add a dash of insightful, and I like them even more. Plain and simple, this explains why I’m such a big fan of American TV critic Emily Nussbaum.

I’ve written about Nussbaum beforebut I’m currently reading her delightful collection of essays about television, titled I Like To Watch. Subtitled: Arguing My Way Through the Television Revolution, the book contends that television is not a wasteland and that much interesting, compelling art is produced on its airwaves.

Emily Nussbaum is currently the TV critic for the New Yorker Magazine and holds the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for criticism. Here are my favourite examples of the figurative language she employed in her most recent book:

  • Movies were respected. Television was a sketchy additive that corporations had tipped into the cultural tap water, a sort of spiritual backbone-weakener.
  • This was the value system that I was soaking in, Palmolive-style.
  • Like every “concern troll” — the Internet term for one who ices here sneer with dignified worry — I may be making Girls sound like a dissertation. It’s a comedy: a slight one, an odd one, an emotional one.
  • Over a recent weekend, House of Cards acted something like a scotch bender, with definite highs and lows. I found the first two episodes handsome but sleazy, like a CEO in a hotel bar.
  • The first season [of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel] struck me as both treacly and exhausting. This was true despite its having a premise so far up my alley it was practically chopping onions in my kitchen.

That last image, in particular, left me laughing and reading the sentence aloud to anyone in my family who would agree to listen.