Christopher Panella

Christopher Panella is an Arts editor at the Tufts Daily. He is a senior studying Film and Media Studies. Chris can be reached at [email protected]

Comfort Cartoons: Secretive and supernatural ‘Gravity Falls’

The detailed storytelling and funny characters of “Gravity Falls” are perfect for audience investment, and the show’s been graced with a dedicated fan base whose members have studied the episodes’ countless clues and teasers. My earliest experience as a fan of “Gravity Falls” came when watching the episode “Summerween.”

Soundtrack to the end of the world: Bringing the nightclub to my bedroom

There’s something euphoric about dance music’s pounding beats and explosive drops. It’s a sort of catharsis, an exchange of energy — I think that’s especially true when we dance with others. Dancing alone this past year hasn’t felt the same. But post-pandemic, I’m excited for the empathy, love, excitement and power that comes from anyone and everyone’s enjoying dance music. With each song, we’ll be celebrating.

Comfort Cartoons: Mature and electrifying ‘Static Shock’

This week, we’re looking at “Static Shock” (2000–04), an influential animated series following Virgil Hawkins, a 14-year-old boy who fights crime as “Static,” a superhero with electromagnetic powers. The show is another installment in the DC Animated Universe, premiering before the culminations of the DCAU, “Justice League” (2001–04) and “Justice League Unlimited” (2004–06).

Weekender: 10 years later, analyzing ‘Femme Fatale’ as Britney Spears’ zenith

“Femme Fatale” came at a significant moment in both American music and Spears’ career. Riding on the early rise of electronic dance music, the singer’s seventh album had one overarching desire: to commemorate Spears’ new era after her rise, fall and comeback in popular culture. Of course, that’s a simplification of what might be her greatest work to date. But at the time, “Femme Fatale” acted as a turning point.

Comfort Cartoons: Campy classic ‘Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!’

The “Scooby-Doo” franchise is possibly the prime example of an intergenerational cultural touchstone. The Mystery Gang, their iconic outfits and their groovy Mystery Machine have remained something most audiences can connect with in some way. That’s partially thanks to the various installations of “Scooby-Doo,” which have spanned a handful of animated films, video games, television […]

Comfort Cartoons: Roller coaster ride ‘Lilo & Stitch’

“Lilo & Stitch” has always been focused on family, whether it be broken or whole, and how we can find connections and purposes that matter. The franchise’s earnestness has made it both famous and a generational touchstone. For people who grew up with the film (and its subsequent show), Stitch is just about the cutest plush animal you can get at The Walt Disney World Resort.

‘Framing Britney Spears’ and the movement to free America’s biggest pop star

It seems like an understatement to call the media and music industry’s misogyny, harassment and deliberate destruction of Spears as “struggles.” But “Framing Britney Spears” comes at a moment when American culture is finally deconstructing this euphemism. We’re now grappling with just how terribly Spears was treated.

Comfort Cartoons: Neo-noir and gothic ‘Batman: The Animated Series’

Following the episodic adventures of Batman, Robin and Batgirl, the series takes on a darker tone that feels inspired by both Tim Burton’s two Batman films and the ‘70s and '80s comic books. Those interpretations are seen in every detail: Gotham City’s skies are dark even during the day, the buildings are tall and gothic and gangsters sneak around in alleys and side streets.

Pokémon announces remakes ‘Brilliant Diamond,’ ‘Shining Pearl’ and new ‘Arceus’ game

The Pokémon Company finally announced its most anticipated games of the past 25 years on Feb. 26. The franchise celebrated its 25th anniversary with many things — like the surprisingly fun virtual Post Malone concert — but the crown jewels of the commemoration were the “Pokémon Brilliant Diamond” (2021), “Pokémon Shining Pearl” (2021) and “Pokémon Legends: Arceus” (2022) game announcements.

Comfort Cartoons: Eccentric ‘Ed, Edd n Eddy’

Ed is dumb but lovable, Double D is intelligent and anxious and Eddy sports a short temper and acts as the de facto leader of the group. These eclectic personalities lead to fighting within the group that’s both humiliating and hilarious.