The ever-growing glut of great new TV, movies, books, music, comics, and podcasts can be a lot to keep up with. So we here at Vox Culture — where our current obsessions include the latest true crime TV series, a satirical novel about a Brooklyn mom on the lam, and an engrossing step team documentary — have a few suggestions for how to make the best use of your pop culture–consuming time.
Here are seven items to consider for your pop culture queue.
Watch: Manhunt: Unabomber is surprisingly compelling puzzle TV
The success of The People v. O.J. Simpson in 2016 has led to the floodgates opening for true crime docudramas, because there are more crime tales than there are film crews to make them. Discovery Channel’s entry into this format is Manhunt, whose first season centers on the mid-’90s hunt for Ted Kaczynski, better known as the Unabomber.
It has Paul Bettany turning up the creepy charisma as Kaczynski and a seriously gifted ensemble cast (including Chris Noth and Keisha Castle Hughes) playing the FBI agents chasing him; the series doesn’t have the depth of O.J., but it’s hard to look away from all the same. And it has something almost as compelling as the earlier series’ look at how the Simpson trial predicted our modern era: a “play along at home” puzzle aspect, as a team of agents led by Jim Fitzgerald (Avatar’s Sam Worthington) scrambles to deduce who the Unabomber is from obscure clues left in his manuscript.
Even though you know how this one’s going to end, you might not know the whole backstory, which makes for a compelling watch. New episodes air Tuesdays at 10 pm on Discovery, with prior episodes available on the network’s website. —Todd VanDerWerff
Read: The latest from Tana French, Our Lady of Thoughtful Thrillers, is now out in paperback
There’s a bit of a cult around Tana French, and once you read one of her books, it’s easy to see why: They are so engrossing, so smart and suspenseful all at once, that when you’ve finished one, you have to read the other five.
French writes crime novels centered on a group of detectives on Dublin’s murder squad. Her six books are loosely connected, taking place in a shared universe with a few recurring characters popping up from book to book, but you can read them in any order you please. And now that her latest, The Trespasser, is out in paperback, there’s no reason not to start from the end and work backward….