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‘Black Sails’ review: Pretty pirates don’t quite hold water

Who knew pirating was about as adventurous as a business meeting? Silver is still a biped at this point and hasn't patented the "aarrgh" Robert Newton made famous in the Disney version of the tale. [...] medium-size [Read entire story]

Bay Area arts and entertainment picks

Theater: 'The Smell of the Kill'A dinner party takes a comically chilling turn in Michelle Lowe's popular comedy as three wives exchange confidences about their bad marriages to unloving husbands - while the men [Read entire story]

Bay Area arts and entertainment picks

Theater: 'The Smell of the Kill'A dinner party takes a comically chilling turn in Michelle Lowe's popular comedy as three wives exchange confidences about their bad marriages to unloving husbands - while the men [Read entire story]

Millions in China smitten with Sherlock Holmes

Chinese fans write their own stories about the modern version of author Arthur Conan Doyle's prickly, Victorian detective and his sidekick, Dr. Watson, to fill the time between the brief, three-episode seasons. "The [Read entire story]

Katie Couric documentary spotlights childhood obesity

Along with her soon-to-end daytime talk show, fall engagement and recent move from TV to the Web as Yahoo's global anchor, Katie Couric also made a documentary feature shown at Sundance. Couric linked up with "An [Read entire story]

Sarge, it’s beautiful out there – too beautiful

The Anderson Valley is small and beautiful, almost a hidden treasure, although a lot of people know about it. There's the Boonville Hotel with its famous garden, a couple of roadside sip-and-go places, and (among other [Read entire story]

PBS rejects earlier airing of ‘Downton Abbey,’ cites niche

Despite some fans eager to see it earlier, "Downton Abbey" will continue to begin its new seasons on PBS in January, the broadcaster's chief executive said Monday. The British series began presenting new episodes in [Read entire story]

Virtuoso Wu Man expands horizons of Chinese pipa

If the pipa - the pear-shaped lute with the distinctively percussive, banjo-like twang - has become increasingly well known outside the world of traditional Chinese music, much of the credit goes to the dynamic and [Read entire story]

ACT’s 2014-15 season to include 2 N.Y. hits

The well-reviewed, "Simpsons"-esque comedy, "Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play" by Berkeley native Anne Washburn, and Colm Tolbin's provocative "Testament" - called "The Testament of Mary" on Broadway - highlight the four [Read entire story]

HOROSCOPE for Tuesday, 1/21/14 by Christopher Renstrom

ARIES. (March 20 - April 18): You're wistful for a change of scene, but is that what you want? Or is it more appreciation for what you do? It couldn't hurt to ask. [Read entire story]

An old friend recalls more Dolby magic

[...] Ray's quiet, gentle voice said, 'Lee, why don't you move the couch back?' -- And keeping up the ecumenical theme of these messages, Terry Kraus sent a cell phone picture from a synagogue in Marblehead, Mass.: "On [Read entire story]

New on DVD and Blu-ray, Jan. 21

Feature: Bad Milo! (2013), Best Man Down (2012), Black Water Vampire (2013), Blue Jasmine (2013), Captain Phillips (2013), Charlie Countryman (2013), Concrete Blondes (2012), The Conspiracy (1973), Crossing Lines (2014), [Read entire story]

Troy Holden snaps people of the Tenderloin in ‘Neighbors’

People of the Tenderloin window-shopping along Eddy Street in San Francisco might be surprised to look into the Lower Branch Gallery and see their own faces looking back at them. It's a short exhibition - 10 hours of [Read entire story]

HOROSCOPE for Monday, 1/20/14 by Christopher Renstrom

ARIES. (March 20 - April 18): Now that people are listening you're going to have to tone it down a bit. You also need to learn that less is more. You're entering a different playing field. [Read entire story]

Jazz drummer, DJ Bud Spangler dies at 74

Bud Spangler, a jazz drummer and longtime Bay Area radio host who produced several Grammy-nominated albums, died Thursday in Oakland. Mr. Spangler, whose enthusiasm for jazz was contagious, was involved in every era of [Read entire story]

‘Silent Sky’: Scientist light-years ahead of her time

Leavitt, whose chief discovery allowed astronomers to measure the distance between Earth and other galaxies, is the focus of Lauren Gunderson's new play, "Silent Sky," which opened last week at TheatreWorks. "The women [Read entire story]

All kinds of dogs come to Duboce Park

Apparently, her husband is in favor of the widespread practice of dog nudity, a shocking practice popular in not only the Castro, but in neighborhoods all around the world. The blog Haighteration reported recently that [Read entire story]

Emotion a no-show in Wayne McGregor’s dance ‘FAR’

Science meets art somewhere during Wayne McGregor's "FAR," which the English choreographer's company Random Dance brought to the Lam Research Theater, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Friday evening for its West Coast [Read entire story]

Minerva’s Sunday Horoscope/Starcast & Mailbag: 01/19/14

Starcast This week the charismatic sun joins wily Mercury in independent and sometimes eccentric Aquarius. [Read entire story]

Amiri Baraka mourned with poetry, music

The service, held at Newark Symphony Hall, featured poetry, music and tributes to a man several speakers hailed as a creative and committed revolutionary who had a profound influence both on American culture and on a [Read entire story]