Pop Culture Happy Hour is a fun and freewheeling chat about the latest movies, television, books, and music.
Here's the Latest Episode from Pop Culture Happy Hour – NPR:
Dolly Parton might be one of the most famous women in the United States. She's one of our great country singers, she produces television including an upcoming Netflix series, and she has her own theme park. And now, inevitably, she's the subject of a podcast. The nine-episode series, Dolly Parton's America, from Jad Abumrad of Radiolab, talks about Parton's life, her music, her home, and what she means to other people.
There are a lot of Christmas movies with a lot of different inspirations. The new film Last Christmas, is inspired by Wham! song of the same name. The film is directed by Paul Feig and written by Bryony Kimmings and Emma Thompson, and stars Emilia Clarke andHenry Golding. It tells the story of a woman who's struggling to get back on her feet after an illness knocked her out.
Stephen King's novel the shining was about a haunted hotel and a boy named Danny Torrance with psychic powers. In 2013, Stephen King wrote a sequel. In that book Danny Torrance is all grown up, but still haunted — literally and figuratively — by the ghosts of his past. He's played by Ewan MacGregor in the new film Doctor Sleep, which adapts King's novel.
HBO's series Watchmen is not strictly an adaptation of the landmark comic book series by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons — it's technically a sequel. It stars Regina King as an ex-cop in Tulsa Oklahoma who's not-so-secretly the masked vigilante Sister Night. It also stars Don Johnson and Tim Blake Nelson, alongside Jean Smart and a very odd Jeremy Irons, who are both playing characters from the comic. Showrunner Damon Lindelof has set the show within a big, weird world that keeps getting bigger and weirder, even as it seeks to comment on some very contemporary, real-world issues.
We know — you're tired. The next presidential election is still just over a year away, but it feels like the last one never ended. And if that's how you feel, imagine what it's like for folks who cover this stuff for a living. We asked Ayesha Rascoe and Danielle Kurtzleben from the NPR Politics Podcast to tell us what pop culture they turn to when they need a break.
Dolemite Is My Name is a new Netflix biopic about comedian Rudy Ray Moore, who created a flamboyant alter ego and became a blaxploitation legend in the 1970s. The film stars Eddie Murphy, who's joined by a fantastic cast that includes Keegan-Michael Key, Tituss Burgess, Craig Robinson, Mike Epps and Wesley Snipes. It's a behind the scenes look at the making of the 1975 cult hit film Dolemite.
Jojo Rabbit is already an Oscar favorite. The dark comedy from director Taika Waititi won the audience award at the Toronto International Film Festival. That's preceded a best picture nomination in 10 out of the last 11 years. Based on a 2004 novel by Christine Leunens, the film follows Jojo, a German boy who remains loyal to Adolf Hitler as World War II winds down. In fact, he envisions the leader as his imaginary friend.
Even if you've seen a lot of movies about class struggle, you can bet you've never seen one like Parasite. From director Bong Joon-ho, it tells the story of two families, one with a lot of money and one that's just struggling to get by. Parasite won the top prize, the Palme d'Or, at this year's Cannes Film Festival, and it's South Korea's entry into this year's Oscars race.
The Emmy-award winning series Breaking Bad chronicled the transformation of Walter White, a mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher played by Bryan Cranston, into a ruthless and deadly crystal meth kingpin. It ended in 2013, after six seasons. The show also starred Aaron Paul as Cranston's punching-bag of partner-in-crime, Jesse Pinkman. Now, series creator Vince Gillgan has written and directed a new Netflix movie that explores what happens to Jesse in the immediate aftermath of Breaking Bad's finale.
Last month at an Advertising Week event in New York, Linda Holmes had the chance to sit down with a legend of public radio and of good conversation. Terry Gross has hosted Fresh Air since 1975. She still brings listeners daily conversations about news and books, film and science. Today, we're sharing an edited version of that conversation.
Ryan Murphy and his collaborators are responsible for everything from Glee to American Horror Story. And now, they've made their first project for Netflix. It follows Payton Hobart, a high school student determined to be president of the student body, and one day the United States. Murphy has gathered another of his impressive casts: Ben Platt, Gwyneth Paltrow, Bob Balaban, Bette Midler, and of course Jessica Lange.
Summer is turning to fall where we are, and that means it's time for a couch, a blanket, and a book. Fiction and nonfiction, essays and memoirs, we've got some ideas for things you can read this fall. And we're bringing in a couple of our favorite book lovers to help us out.
In the new Todd Phillips film Joker, Joaquin Phoenix plays Arthur Fleck, an aspiring comic. Neglected by the world and beaten down everywhere he turns, Fleck does what any discouraged clown would do: he becomes a menace.
The Netflix series Unbelievable brings together a group of actresses including Kaitlyn Dever, Toni Collette, Merritt Wever, Dale Dickey and Danielle MacDonald. It's based on a true story about a young woman named Marie who was sexually assaulted and pressured by the police into recanting her story. Based on reporting from ProPublica and the Marshall Project, the series follows Marie, but also the two detectives who, much later, gave her case a chance to be solved.
In our fall movie preview, we will cover the ones we're excited about, the ones you'll be hearing more about, and the ones that might be picking up awards in a few months. Whether you like comedies or dramas, and whether you like to see your films in a theater or in the comfort of your own home, we're here to give you the scoop.
It was a huge night for Fleabag and a coronation for Game Of Thrones, and there were a few surprises and big moments along the way. The awards got spread out quite a bit this year, including a historic acting win for Billy Porter, several awards for The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and Ozark.
If you thought the end of the series Downton Abbey would be the end of the Crawley family's adventures, a new film has arrived to prove you wrong. The movie continues the story of this very wealthy group and their loyal staff. The large cast is reunited, from sharp-tongued dowagers to scheming butlers. And this time, the King and Queen are coming for a visit.
Anyone who's surprised at the big weekend the new film Hustlers had at the box office probably shouldn't be. Not only does it star popular women like Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu, with drop-ins from Cardi B and Lizzo, but it got very good reviews at the Toronto International Film Festival. What's not to like? Hustlers is based on the true story of a group of women who danced at a strip club together and later drugged and scammed some of their wealthy Wall Street customers. Directed by Lorene Scafaria, the film is already generating awards buzz for Jennifer Lopez.
Donna Tartt's 2013 book The Goldfinch won a Pulitzer Prize for its story of a boy whose mother dies in a bombing. It's an epic tale of grief, abandonment, friendship, drugs, and a stolen painting of a goldfinch. Now, The Goldfinch has been adapted into a movie starring Ansel Elgort, Oakes Fegley, Nicole Kidman, Luke Wilson, Jeffrey Wright, Finn Wolfhard and Sarah Paulsen.
The animated show Steven Universe has told the story of a human-alien hybrid boy and the race of alien women called Gems who've helped raise him on Earth. The show has told lighthearted stories of life in the fictional Beach City — and headed to space for a more epic saga about a group of intergalactic leaders, a past rebellion, and a plot to destroy the world. Creator Rebecca Sugar has said that there will be more episodes, but for now, Steven Universe: The Movie has just premiered on the Cartoon Network.
The 2017 movie It was a massive blockbuster, and became the highest-grossing R-rated horror film of all time. Adapting the Stephen King novel of the same name, it tells the story of seven misfit kids in the late 1980s, and a supernatural being that preys on children in a small town in Maine. The sequel revisits the kids 27 years later — they're now played by the likes of Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, and Bill Hader.
Just about every week, we talk about what we're watching or reading or listening to right now. Today, we're doing something different. We're going back 20 years to talk about some of the movies of 1999, including Drop Dead Gorgeous, Office Space, and The Talented Mr. Ripley. We'll talk about what holds up, what looks really different, and what we miss the most.
It's autumn again. And that means we're getting a wave of new television. So it's time for the annual fall TV preview. Whether you like superheros or detectives, broadcast or cable or streaming, we're here to share what we're excited to see.
We just spent three hours watching the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards, which are never really about awards so much as moments: big performances and the memes and soundbites we may or may not remember for years to come. This year's show brought lots of Taylor Swift, and Missy Elliott, not to mention Lizzo, Normani, Lil Nas X, Rosalía and more.
The gang takes a look at Amy Sherman-Palladino's award-winning comedy, starring Rachel Brosnahan as a '50s housewife-turned-comedian. And, as always, What's Making Us Happy this week. Guests: Writer Katie Presley and Weekend Edition Books Editor Barrie Hardymon. (This episode originally aired on January 19, 2018.)
The panel discusses Netflix's new wrestling comedy GLOW with NPR's Code Switch Kat Chow. (This episode originally aired on June 23, 2017.)
In Maria Semple's novel Where'd You Go, Bernadette, Bernadette Fox is a wife and mother who mysteriously vanishes from her ordinary life in the middle of a personal crisis. Her daughter is left to piece together what happened. The new film adaptation is directed by Richard Linklater and stars Cate Blanchett as Bernadette.
Of all the TV shows about monstrous rich people, the HBO series Succession might be one of the most cutting. It follows heartless media mega-mogul Logan Roy and his ruthless children as they try to outmaneuver each other. And while the family is awful, the show is great. And if you're not watching it, you're missing out on a lot of high-quality scheming.
Back in 2004, Veronica Mars was a high school student working for her private-eye father on the side. After three seasons on the air and a crowdfunded movie in 2014, Veronica is back. Now an adult and still a detective, Veronica tackles a fresh mystery in a set of new episodes available on Hulu. She still works with her father, she's still in love with reformed bad boy Logan Echolls, and she still has a one-liner for nearly every occasion.
The new film Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw stars Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Jason Statham. The two play their characters from the Fast & Furious franchise, spun off into a fresh adventure. They race a mechanically enhanced super soldier played by Idris Elba to recover a deadly virus before it can melt the entire population of the planet into a series of small puddles.
In The Farewell, Akwafina plays Billi, a young woman whose beloved grandmother back in China is diagnosed with lung cancer. The family decides not to tell the grandmother that she's got only months to live — a decision that Billi strongly disagrees with. The Farewell was written and directed by Lulu Wang based on a piece she did on This American Life.
Queer Eye is back for a fourth season, so we figured it'd be interesting to review our first impressions of the series, back when it premiered last year. We talk about the show's broader mission statement, the new Fab Five, and how thoroughly the world has changed since the first iteration of the show went off the air. (This episode originally aired on February 21, 2018.)
Jeopardy! has been in the news a lot this year, both for James Holzhauer's historic championship run and for Alex Trebek's recent cancer diagnosis. But when we talked about the long-running game show last year, it was just an eternal juggernaut. (This episode originally aired July 11, 2018.)
For the last few years, Disney has been turning its beloved animated films into live-action revamps . But this revamp isn't live-action — even though it looks like it is. The digital animation is ridiculously advanced, bringing Simba, Mufasa, Scar, Nala, Timon and Pumbaa to eerie, ultra-realistic life. The voice cast is full of ringers — Chiwetel Ejiofor, John Oliver, Billy Eichner, Seth Rogen, Donald Glover and Beyoncé. But do the changes they make to the story — and the songs — improve on the original?
What has music, neon signs, classic cars, and Vegas gangsters in a dramatic story of love and death? Believe it or not, it's the Metropolitan Opera's production of Rigoletto, which we recently checked out in New York. Not only did we see the show, but we went backstage to see how they make the show happen.
In the film Midsommar, writer-director Ari Aster follows up his cult horror hit Hereditary with a film about a literal cult. Florence Pugh plays a young woman who tags along with her awful boyfriend and his pals to a remote Swedish village as they enact their bloody rituals. We discuss the sun-drenched Scandanavian creepiness.
In Spider-Man: Far From Home, Tom Holland's Peter Parker deals with the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame by not dealing with it — he takes a class trip to Europe, attempting to leave his great power, and his great responsibility, behind.
It's our second annual songs of summer spectacular! Every year at NPR Music we debate which hits might be remembered as "the song of the summer" — sometimes it's a frothy pop song, or a star-packed hip-hop banger, or simply a song that gets played on the radio over and over again until we're beaten into submission. This week we're bringing in a revolving cast of my colleagues from NPR Music, each of whom will play us one song — one nominee to be the unofficial Song Of The Summer for 2019.
In Yesterday, Himesh Patel plays Jack Malik, an English singer whose career is going nowhere. His parents don't understand him, but he's got the support of his friends — especially Ellie, his manager, played by Lily James. One night, Jack gets hit by a bus at the precise moment of a worldwide power outage. When he wakes up, he learns that he's in a world where the Beatles never existed. So he starts playing their songs — the world soon hears them for the first time, and Jack finds his entire life upended.
When Avengers: Endgame came out in late April, it got good reviews and it did huge business. As with everything we talk about, we didn't want to spoil it for you, so some of its biggest developments went un-analyzed. But no more. We thought this one deserved a second look before we bid this chapter of the Marvel Universe farewell. So today, we're discussing and revealing with abandon.
The Toy Story movies have been skittering around the closets of our hearts for almost 25 years. Anchored by Woody the sheriff, voiced by Tom Hanks, they're central to the story of Pixar. Now we're up to Toy Story 4. This time, Woody has to protect a homemade toy named Forky, voiced by Tony Hale. Forky may just be a spork with a face, but he's special to Bonnie, the little girl Woody lives with.
When Big Little Lies came to HBO, it boasted a cast full of stars: Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley, Zoë Kravitz and Laura Dern. For season two, they upped their game by adding Meryl Streep. The end of season one solved a mystery the show had been circling, and season two is about the aftermath.
In the movie Late Night, Mindy Kaling plays Molly Patel, a woman who gets her big break in the writers' room of late night host Katherine Newbury. Newbury, played by Emma Thompson, is on thin ice with the network and wants to add Molly as a way of diversifying her very white and very male writing staff. But once Molly gets there, she finds that being considered a diversity hire comes with challenges of its own. Late Night also features John Lithgow, Denis O'Hare, and Reid Scott.
A few weeks ago we talked about the wonderful new teen comedy Booksmart. the film is directed by Olivia Wilde, who is also an actress known for her roles on House, The O.C., and Tron: Legacy. In this bonus episode, you'll hear Wilde's recent appearance on Wait Wait Don't Tell Me. She played 'Not My Job' where she was quizzed about Buffalo Wild Wings.
We are recapping this year's Tony Awards. James Corden was back as the host, and it was a big night for the musical Hadestown and the Irish play The Ferryman. The musicals Tootsie and Oklahoma! also picked up multiple awards.
In 2016, Phoebe Waller-Bridge presented the world with Fleabag. She not only writes the show, but she stars in it too. She plays a young woman only referred to as Fleabag who is bruised by external and internal struggles. And in 2019, the show came back for a wonderful second and, we're told, final season.
Rocketman is a new biopic about queer rock icon Elton John. It is in many ways a typical rise-and-fall, dangers of fame kind of rock star biopic. But there is a difference: this is a full-on jukebox musical on film. And star Taron Egerton doesn't just lip-sync — he actually sings.
In the new movie Booksmart, two young women about to graduate from high school spend one last night trying to catch up on everything they missed. Starring Beanie Feldstein and Kaitlyn Dever, it's the directing debut of actress Olivia Wilde. The cast also includes Jessica Williams, Billie Lourd, Jason Sudeikis, Lisa Kudrow and many more. And we really, really like it.
We recently packed up and road-tripped to New York to check out some selections from the current Broadway theater season. We went to musicals and plays, revivals and new works, and we have a lot of thoughts.
Aladdin is the latest Disney live-action remake of an animated classic. The 1992 original starred Robin Williams as the genie, and this time it's Will Smith. The genie is still blue and there's still a mischievous monkey. But director Guy Ritchie has some ideas of his own, too.
After eight seasons, 73 episodes, and way too many characters busting out the phrase "bend the knee" all the time, HBO's Game of Thrones has come to an end. And there's a lot to unpack.
Once upon a time, a man named John Wick retired from his successful career as an assassin. But then he returned to it. And across what's now a three-film series, he's been having a heck of a week ever since.
The Pokémon universe has brought the world television cartoons, trading cards, video games, plush toys, the mobile-game sensation Pokemon GO, and a string of animated movies. Now, the franchise makes the leap into live action with a big-budget summer blockbuster called Pokemon Detective Pikachu.
Everyone needs inspiration. And we need it too. So from time to time, we pause just to single out some of the people whose work we're appreciating. People from whom we want more. We call this segment People We're Pulling For.
While summer is a time of spectacles and sequels, there is always time for love. The new romantic comedy Long Shot stars Charlize Theron as a beautiful and sophisticated presidential candidate and Seth Rogen as the grubby speechwriter with her on the campaign trail.
We revisit our 2016 discussion of the film Popstar. We The also look at back at other films that find humor in the foibles of musicians.
Nothing fascinates the world like a meteoric rise. Except, of course, for a spectacular fall. The story of the Silicon Valley startup Theranos and its young founder Elizabeth Holmes has both. And the coverage it's received has been huge. There's the book Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup, the podcast The Dropout, and the HBO documentary The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley. Today we look at three ways of telling the same story.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has brought us Iron Man movies, Thor movies, Captain America movies, Avengers movies, and many other superhero franchises over the last decade, and they all feed into one epic that ties up many of the loose ends. Today we're talking the juggernaut to end all juggernauts, Avengers: Endgame.
On Wednesday, Beyoncé released two major projects. On Netflix, a new documentary captures the process of putting on headlining appearances at last year's Coachella Music Festival. She also surprise-released a double-length live album that contains just some of the highlights from Beyoncé's two ambitious Coachella performances. Both projects are called Homecoming, and they help immortalize a huge stage show full of dancers and drum lines and impeccable choreography and songs that reach across Beyoncé's career.
It's time again for our summer movie preview. We'll take a shot at guessing hits and misses, and we'll tell you what we can't wait to see.
Today we open up the vault to finally bring you a segment we recorded back in 2016 with our pal Audie Cornish. You'll hear us live in Seattle offering advice on some classic pop culture problems.
It's been 60 years since The Twilight Zone first aired, with the voice and eventually the face of its creator, Rod Serling. Now, CBS All Access has brought the anthology series back in a new incarnation. This time, the host is Jordan Peele. He is also an executive producer, and the big cast includes Adam Scott, Kumail Nanjiani, Steven Yeun, Chris O'Dowd, Tracy Morgan, Sanaa Lathan, and a whole lot more.
For the last four seasons, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend has followed Rebecca Bunch as she pursued love, dreaded her mother, and tried to address her mental health. The show stars Rachel Bloom as Bunch, who created the show with Aline Brosh Mckenna. Now, it's all over, and we're going to talk about it.
"Shazam!" is what young Billy Batson says to morph into a big red superhero. It's also the name of the new movie about him. Starring Zachary Levi as the big lug in the suit, Shazam! makes for a lighter DC Comics movie.
Spring is here, but it's been a long winter. And we're a little overwhelmed by the news of the world, so we're taking a moment to share some of the things that lift our spirits in a segment we call Pop Culture Serotonin.
The comedy series What We Do In The Shadows imagines what a slacker reality show might look like if all the roommates were vampires. The show is based on a 2014 film of the same name, which was helmed by Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi. A new cast of vampires inhabits the FX show.
The new Hulu series Shrill follows Annie, a young writer. She's trying to get her career moving, figure out what's up with her sort-of boyfriend, and learn to feel good about her body. Annie is played by Saturday Night Live's Aidy Bryant, who developed Shrill with TV writer Ali Rushfield and with Lindy West. West wrote the 2016 book of the same name that forms the backbone of the show.
The South by Southwest music festival brings together artists from around the world to perform in big venues and small ones, on sidewalks and sprawling stages. Every year, we bring back some musical discoveries that just might be your next favorites.
The much-praised Hulu series PEN15 is about two middle-school girls who feel like they might never figure out how to grow into adults. The show was created by Maya Erskine, Anna Konkle and Sam Zvibelman. And the hook is that Erskine and Konkle play versions of themselves as kids, awkwardly surrounded by actual tween actors.
Comedy Central's very funny new show The Other Two is about the older siblings of a newly minted YouTube star. His fame makes them feel overshadowed in some of the ways you might expect. But it's also a chance for them to look out for him, and to learn a lot about the broad outlines of fleeting fame.
NPR Music is heading to South By Southwest in Austin, Texas. It's a huge feast of musical discovery that brings together bands and fans from around the world. All Songs Considered convened a panel to preview some of the new discoveries we're most excited to see and hear.
If you came of age in the 1990s, you might know Luke Perry as the rebellious teenage fantasy boyfriend Dylan McKay on Beverly Hills, 90210. But you also might know him from the original movie version of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Or as Archie's dad on Riverdale. Perry was only 52 when he died on Monday. We take a moment to celebrate Perry's contributions to pop culture.
Today we're diving into the complicated and tangled world of Netflix's Russian Doll, a seriesanchored by a dynamic performance from Natasha Lyonne. She co-created the series with Leslye Headland and Amy Poehler.
Green Book is your best picture, and Bohemian Rhapsody and Roma took a bunch of the top prizes, too. And it all got done in a ceremony without a host. We're breaking it all down: the winners, the speeches, the songs, why we're mad, and why we're glad.
Where will you find rock bands going up against jazz pianists, superheroes, and scheming women in beautiful dresses? At this year's Oscars. We're going to talk actors, directors, and much more. We'll also make some predictions, so we might help you win your Oscars pool.
Pop Culture Happy Hour is in its ninth year, so Linda decided to write a quiz about the ninth seasons of television shows. Stephen and Glen faced off against one of our favorite podcast teams, Brittany Luse and Eric Eddings of The Nod. This episode was recorded live at the Bell House in Brooklyn.
We're diving into the Oscar-nominated documentaries and foreign language films. We'll tell you which ones to watch and where to find them, which might make you the star of your Oscar party.
This year's awards were a big night for Childish Gambino and Kacey Musgraves. It was also a night of strong performances from artists like Janelle Monae and Cardi B. And don't forget Diana Ross, who wished herself a happy birthday a month and a half early.
Another year, another Patriots Super Bowl win. But was it a high scoring game? It was not. In fact, no one had even scored a touchdown when Maroon 5 came out to headline the halftime show. We recap the game, the halftime show, and the commercials.
What doBohemian Rhapsody, Vice, and Green Book have in common? Two things: one, they're nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars; and two, they're based on events in the lives of real people. Today, awards season leads us to a wide-reaching conversation on some very different movies.
If you've noticed your friends have been a little more "tidy" than usual, or your thrift store a bit better stocked, it might be because of Netflix. The streaming series Tidying Up With Marie Kondo has spurred an organizational renaissance. Or at least a conversation about one.
Alfonso Cuarón directed the award-winning film Gravityin 2013, and won an Oscar for it. Now he's back with a movie that's equally ambitious, and much more personal. Roma is inspired by Alfonso Cuarón's childhood, and the movie tells the story of Cleo, a nanny and housekeeper in 1970's Mexico City.
Despite how firm our opinions often seem when we first declare them, there have been times when they've changed. During our recent live show at the Brooklyn Podcast Festival, we took a moment to talk about some things we have different feelings on now then we once did.
In 2000, director M. Night Shyamalan presented Unbreakable, the story of two men whose epic tales of good and evil collided. Then came 2016's Split, a stealth sequel. Now, Shyamalan wraps up the trilogy with Glass.
The Masked Singerisn't your everyday singing competition. Based on a South Korean format, each week we learn the identity of the elaborately costumed "celebrity" who gets voted off. So far, we've unmasked football player Antonio Brown, and comedian Tommy Chong.
After winning an Oscar in 2017 for Moonlight, director Barry Jenkins is back with If Beale Street Could Talk. This time, he adapts a James Baldwin novel for the screen.
Green Book and Bohemian Rhapsody unexpectedly won big. So did thanking your parents and going on just a little too long. It's the wee hours of Monday morning, and we are wrapping up this year's big winners and big surprises.
The sci-fi series Black Mirror has always been about changing technology and its usually dark implications for the future. Its latest episode, Bandersnatch, is itself the result of new technology developed at Netflix. As you watch it, you make your own on-screen choices that determine which of several possible endings you reach.
Fox canceled Brooklyn Nine-Nine at the end of its fifth season, but much to our delight, NBC picked it back up again. It's coming back for a sixth season starting on January 10th, and we thought that would make it just the right time to revisit our conversation about it.
Today, we look back on our 2018 resolutions to see how we fared, and make some new ones for the year to come. We also make our fearless pop culture predictions for the next 12 months, and see how last year's predictions panned out.
The animated Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse focuses on one of the Spider-People who has come along in the years since the world first met Peter Parker, in 1962. In the film, Miles Morales is a Brooklyn teenager who acquires spider-powers at the same time he discovers that there are other versions of himself across alternate dimensions.
It's the end of the year, and that makes it the perfect time to talk about the things we loved the most in 2018. From Black Panther, to Crazy Rich Asians, to the viral moments you might have missed, we are rounding up our fifteen favorites of the year. So get ready for a whole lot of recommending.
In 1964, the original Mary Poppins made Julie Andrews a movie star and introduced a generation to Dick Van Dyke's regrettable Cockney accent. Now, Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda head up Mary Poppins Returns.
The Favourite, set in the early 1700s, tells the story of Britain's Queen Anne and two women who are jostling for her favor. Rachel Weisz plays the Queen's close adviser Sarah, and Emma Stone plays an ambitious servant named Abigail who has her eye on a bigger prize.
Comedian Guy Branum joins NPR's Sam Sanders to talk about his new book My Life As A Goddess and the many challenges presented by a mostly white, hetero-normative comedy scene.
What's warm and fuzzy, emotionally manipulative, and desperate for attention almost every hour of every day? Linda's dog, sure. But also the Hallmark Channel's endless supply of holiday movies and the competitors nipping at their heels.
You can't have an abundance of Christmas songs without also having an abundance of opinions about Christmas songs — songs we love, songs we hate, songs we love when they're sung by one person, but hate when they're sung by another. This week on Pop Culture Happy Hour, we've convened a special panel to tackle our favorite songs for the season.
Wreck It Ralph was a hit when it came out in 2012. Ralph Breaks the Internetpicks up where that film left off, and is even more ambitious than its predecessor. This time, Ralphtravels to the Internet — which gives the movie a lot of material to work with.
It's been three years since the Rocky movies were reborn with Creed, starring Michael B. Jordan as Apollo Creed's son, Adonis. Now, in Creed 2, Adonis is up against the son of Ivan Drago, the man who killed his father in the ring in 1985.
Widows is not your average heist movie — director Steve McQueen and co-screenwriter Gillian Fylnn have created something far more interesting. The film also has a star-studded cast that includes Viola Davis, Daniel Kaluuya, Michelle Rodriguez, Brian Tyree Henry, and Liam Neeson.
Die Hard turned 30 this year. So as the season of Season's Greetings approaches, it's time for the Pop Culture Happy Hour conversation we've always been dying to have.
In the Amazon thriller Homecoming, Julia Roberts plays a caseworker at a facility that helps soldiers re-adjust to civilian life. Or at least that's what she thinks it does. But calls from a mysterious boss and sessions with a young soldier make her question everything.
Stan Lee helped create some of the most indelible comic book characters in American popular culture, including Spider-Man, the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, and Black Panther. He died Monday. He was 95.
There are a bunch of new shows to pay attention to this season, and today we're talking about two of our favorite talk entries — Patriot Act With Hasan Minhaj and Busy Tonight.
Nobody's Foolis a Tyler Perry movie, but maybe more important at the moment, it's a Tiffany Haddish movie. Haddish plays Tanya, who fears her sister is being catfished in an online relationship.
The Netflix series The Haunting of Hill House tells what is, in many ways, an old-fashioned ghost story. Moving between the past and the present, the series traces the effects of trauma on a family that once chose to spend a summer living in a house that is up to no good.
Wildlife,starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Carey Mulligan, tells the story of a marriage in crisis in 1960's Montana. Based on a novel by Richard Ford and directed by actor Paul Dano, it's told from the point of view of a young teenager watching his family fall to pieces.
Beautiful Boy is a story of addiction starring two Oscar-nominated actors. Timothée Chalamet plays Nic Sheff, who's addicted to crystal meth. Steve Carell plays David Sheff, his journalist father who's struggling to help him get well.
It's been forty years since the release of the classic horror film, Halloween. Since then, the franchise has wandered through its own house of horrors in the form of sequels and reboots. The newest Halloween throws all of those additions out, and assumes that only the 1978 original ever happened.
If you've been longing for a cartoon that covers the really important questions — like how to manage lust, and how to avoid your embarrassing parents — you are in luck. Big Mouth, Netflix's animated comedy series about the horrors of puberty, is back for a second season.
In Venom, Tom Hardy plays Eddie Brock, an investigative journalist who's trying to rebound from a major setback in his career. But Eddie's plans are halted when he's overtaken by a violent — and gooey — alien symbiote.
First Man tells the story of Neil Armstrong's life in the decade leading up to his walk on the moon. Ryan Gosling stars as Armstrong, and it's directed by Damien Chazelle. It's the second time they're teaming up after the huge commercial and critical success of La La Land.
The Hate U Give finds teenager Starr Carter caught between two worlds — her mostly black neighborhood and a white prep school. When her friend Khalil is killed by a police officer, she's forced to reconcile these two very different parts of her identity. We're joined by Brittany Luse and Eric Eddings, hosts of The Nod podcast.
Lady Gaga stars opposite Bradley Cooper in the latest retelling of A Star Is Born. It's also Cooper's directing debut, with a cast that includes Sam Elliott, Andrew Dice Clay, and Dave Chappelle. We're joined by Ari Shapiro to break down the singing, the glamour, the tears, and the wonder of Sam Elliott's voice.
What has Anna Kendrick, Blake Lively, menswear looks, mysteries, and YouTube's most cheerful mom? It's the stylish, mischievous, and sometimes darkly funny thriller A Simple Favor.
We're excited for a whole bunch of new movies this fall. Today, we dive into our 2018 Fall Movie Preview and talk about as many of them as we can — from the big studio flicks to the festival favorites and everything in between.
We recommended a lot of stuff during our 'All-Books' episode. So please enjoy this second volume (see what we did there?) of the All-Books Edition of Pop Culture Happy Hour, again led by our extra special panel.
Maya Rudolph and Fred Armisen star in the new Amazon series Forever. The two of them play a middle-aged married couple named Oscar and June, who are in a bit of a rut. Along the way, they find themselves in an unexpected situation that challenges their thinking about the permanence of marriage. Today, we dive into this very curious relationship comedy. Guest: Aisha Harris
We're here to fill you in on everything you need to know about the 2018 Emmys. On a night we were constantly reminded how diverse this year's nominations were — the winners were mostly white. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and Game of Thrones won the top awards. Guest: NPR TV Critic Eric Deggans.
Today, we take a break from TV and movies to talk about some of our favorite books we've read — and what books we're most looking forward to this fall.
NPR Music's ambitious Turning the Tables series re-imagines the popular music canon by putting women and non-binary musicians at the center. All Songs Considered recently had a great conversation about the project, and today we bring that conversation to your Pop Culture Happy Hour feed.
Not every day can be Friday, not every bit of weather can be sunny and not every plate can have cookies on it. That's why we love our pop culture serotonin — the stuff we watch, read and listen to that boosts our mood and makes us feel better. Today, we share some of our favorites.
The Netflix young adult romance To All The Boys I've Loved Before tells the story of a high school pair who may or may not — but come on, they will — end up together. You've probably seen it on your Twitter feed, and today we assemble a very special panel to talk about it.
It's almost the end of the summer, which means it's time for Pop Culture Happy Hour's fall TV preview. We're telling you what new shows we're excited about, and which ones we think are built to last. Guest: NPR TV Critic Eric Deggans.
Ryan Coogler's Marvel film, set largely in the richly imagined Afro-futurist utopia of Wakanda, is by turns intimate, immediate and — most importantly — original. Guest: Code Switch's Gene Demby. (This episode originally aired on February 16, 2018.)
BlacKkKlansmantells the story Ron Stallworth — a black police detective who infiltrated the local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan. On today's Pop Culture Happy Hour, we dive into the most talked about Spike Lee movie in years. Guest: Code Switch's Gene Demby
Last night the VMAs honored some top songs and artists including Camila Cabello, Jennifer Lopez, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj. The show also recognized Aretha Franklin—sort of. And trotted out Aerosmith—again. New York Times editor Aisha Harris joins us for a recap.
This week, we talk about the charming romantic comedy Crazy Rich Asians, which has been lauded as groundbreaking for its all Asian and Asian-American cast. Guests: NPR's Mallory Yu and Code Switch's Kat Chow.
The "Queen of Soul" died today at age 76. She was a gifted pop singer, gospel singer, R&B singer, and even opera singer. We talk with All Things Considered's Audie Cornish about the unforgettable Aretha Franklin, and the utter abundance of music she left us.
Most of this summer's blockbusters are already out. That makes it a great time to catch up on a couple of surprisingly well-reviewed comedies. In this episode of Pop Culture Happy Hour, we talk about Blockers and Game Night.
Every once in a while, we decide to defend the seemingly indefensible pieces of pop culture that everyone loves to hate. Today, we put on our boxing gloves to defend the honor of some of pop culture's most notorious punching bags. Guests: Audie Cornish and Guy Branum.
The indie movie Sorry to Bother You is a summer hit. Lakeith Stanfield stars as Cassius Green, a telemarketer whose world spirals into chaos. Code Switch's Gene Demby and Shereen Meraji have some very different views on the film.
This week, we're talking about Bo Burnam's breakout festival hit Eighth Grade. Kayla Day, played by Elsie Fisher, is a middle-schooler who gives pep talks on YouTube and yearns for friends she can talk to. Guest: New York Times editor Aisha Harris.
Video game The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild drops you into a world of sweeping vistas and challenging weapons, and it gives you a vast area to explore. It's an adventure and a challenge, and there are lots of different ways to play. Guest: Code Switch's Gene Demby.
We're taking to the streets, the skies, the water and the glitzy high-class nightclubs to talk about Mission: Impossible - Fallout on this episode of Pop Culture Happy Hour. Guest: Chris Klimek.
Under the blue skies of summer, what could be more welcome than ABBA songs? That's right, eight years after a big cast whooped it up in the film adaptation of the jukebox musical Mamma Mia!, there's a sequel. Today, we're talking about the all-singing, all-dancing, all-silly extravaganza that is Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again.
Dwayne Johnson, AKA The Rock, has fought all kinds of things in the movies. Earthquakes, criminals, zoo animals. And now, he's up against a building. On today's Pop Culture Happy Hour, we're defying gravity and saving our families.
Hannah Gadsby's Netflix special arrived in late June and has become a genuine phenomenon. It's an hour that starts as standup and morphs into something else entirely. Guest: Comedian, actor, and Oscar-nominated screenwriter Kumail Nanjiani.
Before Gillian Flynn wrote Gone Girl, she wrote Sharp Objects. Now, HBO has produced an adaptation starring Amy Adams, Patricia Clarkson, and Chris Messina. Guest: NPR Weekend Edition books editor, Barrie Hardymon.
The sequel to 2015's Ant-Man is just as light and inconsequential, but a forgettable villain and an over-complicated plot means it has to work harder — and it shows. Guest: writer Chris Klimek.
Using archival footage and new interviews, Morgan Neville's film explores what how Rogers' unusual children's show came to be and what his legacy is for tens of millions of kids who are now tens of millions of grownups. Guest: Daisy Rosario of NPR member station WAMU.
Stephen Thompson and our pals at NPR Music road-test the songs the songs of the summer.
The panel chats about some of their favorite cooking shows including Top Chef, Chopped and Chef's Table. Guests: Weekend Edition editor Barrie Hardymon and Code Switch's Kat Chow. (This segment originally aired on September 9, 2016.)
You can find new stand-up specials just about every week. In fact, you can find so many that it's hard to keep track of them all. So we spent this episode recommending eight standout specials. Guest: Pop Culture Happy Hour producer emeritus and Ask Me Another producer Mike Katzif.
The action of this animated sequel, which picks up where The Incredibles ended 14 years ago, is fresh and inventive, but the laughs aren't. Guest: NPR Code Switch host Gene Demby.
The Tony Awards paid off for The Band's Visit, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the Angels in America revival and a scrappy theater kid named Bruce Springsteen. Also we remember chef and television host Anthony Bourdain, who died last week.
Ocean's 8 great cast and some clever commentary about women and Hollywood make it a whole lot of fun. Guest: Bim Adewunmi, senior culture writer at Buzzfeed and co-host of the Thirst Aid Kit podcast.
At last, we take a deep, overdue dive into the sweet, tangy jars of emotional marmalade that are the Paddington films. Guests: writer Chris Klimek and librarian Margaret Willison.
We talk about one of the most durable franchises in television history. Guests: Librarian Margaret H. Willison and Sarah D. Bunting, the East Coast Editor of Previously.TV
Johnny Lawrence and Daniel LaRusso are still at it in Cobra Kai, a surprisingly interesting look at what happens later to people who peak — or crash — in high school. Guests: All Things Considered Host Audie Cornish and NPR TV Critic Eric Deggans.
The odds of successfully telling the origin story of the Star Wars trilogy's lovable rogue are approximately 3,720 to 1. After a sluggish start, Solo: A Star Wars Story beats those odds. Guest: NPR Music's Daoud Tyler-Ameen.
Normally, royal weddings are like the Oscars: a lot of pomp, but no real surprises. But when Prince Harry married Meghan Markle, the audience sat up and took notice. Guests: Weekend Edition Editor Barrie Hardymon and Librarian Margaret Willison.
Ryan Reynolds once again assumes the role of a deadly mercenary who makes many references to various pop culture properties while disemboweling folk a lot. Guests: Writer Chris Klimek and Daisy Rosario of NPR Member Station WAMU.
The new Starz half-hour drama tells the story of two young women who learn a lot about their mother when they go home to deal with the consequences of her death. Guest: Daisy Rosario of NPR Member Station WAMU.
Written by Diablo Cody and directed by Jason Reitman,the film stars Charlize Theron in an often brutal look at the emotional and physical tolls of parenthood. Guest: Weekend Edition Editor Barrie Hardymon.
BBC America's cat-and-mouse spy show is a classic genre piece executed very well. We talk about its tension and its great lead performance from Sandra Oh on this week's episode. Guest: Code Switch's Kat Chow
The shush-iest film to become a hit in quite some time gets some overdue attention from the panel on this episode. Guest: Writer Meryl Williams.
Broadway's original Aaron Burr sits down with host Linda Holmes to talk about his new book, how it feels to hear ugly things about your career, and what he wants to do now that he couldn't before.
The Avengers try to keep a space-tyrant from performing cosmic genocide. The film doubles down on character interactions both familiar and unfamiliar. Guest: Code Switch co-host Gene Demby.
After seven seasons, Shonda Rhimes' roller-coaster of a drama screeches to a final halt as Olivia Pope and the team try to get out of one last scrape and Olivia tries to make it to Vermont. Guests: All Things Considered host Audie Cornish, NPR TV Critic Eric Deggans, and NPR Music's Sidney Madden.
The panel predicsts the hits and flops, tell you what they're looking forward to, and help you spend that ticket money wisely. Guest: Aisha Harris, host of Slate's Represent podcast.
Star Trek vs. Star Wars? The Beatles vs. The Rolling Stones? Gale vs. Peeta? Batman vs. Superman? The gang breaks down their favorite pop culture dichotomies. Guest: NPR Books editor Petra Mayer. (This segment originally aired on November 14, 2014.)
To talk about the PBS institution that celebrates used stuff and how much it may or may not be worth. Guest: Jesse Thorn, host of NPR's Bullseye and the head honcho of the Maximum Fun podcast network.
Bill Hader stars as a depressed hit man who wants a fresh start in acting but can't seem to get one. And the HBO comedy-drama asks questions most antihero shows won't. Guest: NPR TV Critic Eric Deggans.
The panel chats about the Roseanne revival and how the show's politics intersects with the politics of Roseanne Barr. Plus, what's making us happy this week. Guest: Hanna Rosin, Co-Host of Invisibilia.
The panel chats about Love, Simon; the first big American studio film to give a gay teenager the kind of story that John Hughes gave straight kids in the 1980s. Guest: Dave Holmes, Editor at Large for Esquire.com.
Spielberg returns to his cinema-as-thrill-ride roots in this adaptation of Ernest Cline's YA novel. Guest: The Verge's Tasha Robinson.
The panel chats about the new Wes Anderson film Isle of Dogs, a stop-motion-animated film about loyal dogs exiled to a lonely island. Guest: Film critic Chris Klimek.
The panels shares some of their favorite new music discoveries from this year's SXSW Music Festival. Guests: NPR Music's Rodney Carmichael and music writer Katie Presley.
The panel High Maintenance, HBO's anthology series about a marijuana dealer and his clients in New York City. Guests: Weekend Edition editor Barrie Hardymon and All Things Considered host Audie Cornish.
The panel chats about some of their favorite talk show guests and what makes an ideal host-guest dynamic. Guest: Comedian Guy Branum, the host and creator of TruTV's Talk Show the Game Show.
Donald Glover's Emmy-winning comedy returns for second season that includes sharply drawn characters and an appreciation for the problems with success. Guests: Code Switch co-host Gene Demby and It's Been a Minute host Sam Sanders.
Director Ava DuVernay's adaptation of the classic Madeleine L'Engle novel is devoid of cynicism, filled with beautiful images and deeply moving. Guest: Daisy Rosario of NPR member station WAMU.
Last year's Oscars were wildly unpredictable. This year's were very predictable, with big wins for The Shape Of Water, all the actors who were expected to win all along, and Jordan Peele.
The team takes a moment to consider the upcoming Oscars in categories big and small. They probably won't end with anyone handing over the wrong envelope. But wouldn't it be surprising if they did? Guest: NPR Film Critic Bob Mondello
The panel tries to stump each other with clips from the weirdest TV they could find. Guest: All Things Considered host Audie Cornish.
Alex Garland's new sci-fi thriller is very weird, and we loved it. Guests: Writer Chris Klimek and Daisy Rosario of NPR member station WAMU.
The Netflix series "Queer Eye" is a reboot of the 2003 phenomenon, not a retread. They've dropped "For the Straight Guy" from the title, reflecting the retooled makeover series' updated, and slightly broadened, mission. Guests: Tobin Low and Kathy Tu, co-hosts of Nancy, a podcast from WNYC studios.
Ryan Coogler's Marvel film, set largely in the richly imagined Afro-futurist utopia of Wakanda, is by turns intimate, immediate and — most importantly — new. Guest: Code Switch's Gene Demby.
Sam Sanders joins the panel to talk about his memories of the Sochi Olympics, the way young athletes handle attention and athleticism itself, what we love watching during this year's games in Pyeongchang.
The panel discusses the Oscar-nominated film Darkest Hour, which stars Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill. Guest: Aisha Harris, host of Slate's Represent Podcast.
The Eagles won a thrilling victory in the Super Bowl on Sunday night, to the delight of Philadelphians everywhere. Tom Brady of the Patriots proved fallible, while Justin Timberlake was ... just fine. Guests: Code Switch's Gene Demby and writer Katie Presley.
Roxane Gay latest book is the memoir Hunger. It's about her relationship with her body, with trauma, and with her own history. In September 2017, host Linda Holmes and Gay sat down at the National Book Festival in Washington D.C. They talked about writing, about bodies, about the closeness people feel with her when they've read her work.
We recap the highlights of this year's Grammy Awards, including a sweep by Bruno Mars and memorable performances from Kendrick Lamar and Kesha. Guests: NPR Music's Rodney Carmichael and Sidney Madden.
We chat about The Good Doctor, ABC's hit medical drama in which Freddie Highmore plays a surgical resident with autism and savant syndrome. Guest: Uproxx TV Critic Alan Sepinwall.
The gang discusses Paul Thomas Anderson's latest film, Phantom Thread. The story about the twisted relationship between a dressmaker (Daniel Day-Lewis) and his muse (Vicky Krieps) just earned six Oscar nominations. Guest: KJZZ Senior Producer and Daniel Day-Lewis super fan Sarah Ventre.
The gang takes a look at Amy Sherman-Palladino's award-winning comedy, starring Rachel Brosnahan as a '50s housewife-turned-comedian. And, as always, What's Making Us Happy this week. Guests: Writer Katie Presley and Weekend Edition Books Editor Barrie Hardymon.
The panel talks about the Florida Project, Sean Baker's small-scale but memorable film set at a motel near Disney World. Then, we take a moment to remember Dolores O'Riodan, the lead singer of the Cranberries, who died suddenly at age 46. Guest: Code Switch's Gene Demby.
This week's show takes a look at an emerging awards contender in the acting categories: I, Tonya, the semi-mockumentary retelling of the life of Tonya Harding, controversial figure skater. Guest: Librarian Margaret H. Willison.
Recent stories of sexual harassment and abuse in Hollywood inspired black dresses and unexpected guests at the Golden Globes. Plus, Oprah Winfrey became the first black woman to win the Cecil B. DeMille Award, and she spent nearly all her time talking about the long struggle for justice for women. In the actual awards races, Three Billboards, Ladybird, and Amazon scored.
Code Switch's Kat Chow joins the panel as they say goodbye to 2017 by revisiting their resolutions and predictions from last year and making new ones for 2018.
Host Linda Holmes talks with actor John Cho (Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle, Star Trek) about why he misses doing broad comedies, his decision to join The Exorcist, what it's like being the subject of internet fandom, and his new film Columbus.
The panel chats about Black Mirror, Netflix's sci-fi anthology series. The fourth season premiers today. Guests: film and theater critic Chris Klimek and Brittany Luse, co-host of The Nod.
The panel runs down their 15 favorite TV shows, movies, books, video games, and trends of 2017.
The panel chats about the Post, Steven Spielberg's latest film which follows the Washington Post's decision to publish the Pentagon Papers. The movie stars Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep. Guest: All Things Considered Film Critic Bob Mondello.
While you may have wrapped up your Hanukkah celebrations, we wanted to share a conversation about the role that Hanukkah plays for kids and adults, and some of the pop culture that surrounds it. Guests: Weekend Edition Editor Barrie Hardymon and KJZZ Senior Producer Sarah Ventre.
Writer/director Rian Johnson joins the Star Wars franchise to deliver a chapter that's fast, fun and freewheeling, even as it introduces surprising nuance to the classic Dark Side vs. Light Side beef. Guest: NPR White House Correspondent Tamara Keith.
The panel talks about the Guillermo del Toro film about a woman racing to save her not-quite-human true love from the bad guys. Guest: NPR Arts Desk Correspondent Neda Ulaby.
James Franco's The Disaster Artist tells the story of the making of The Room, one of the most famous awful movies of all time. The panel sits down to talk about Franco's vision and his muse. Guest: NPR Music's Marissa Lorusso.
Luca Guadagnino's lush adaptation of Andre Aciman's novel stars Timothee Chalamet as a teenage prodigy who falls in love with a visiting grad student played by Armie Hammer. Guest: All Things Considered Film Critic Bob Mondello.
The panel reviews Martin McDonagh's polarizing new film, which stars Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson, and Sam Rockwell. Guest: Code Switch co-host Gene Demby.
Pixar's latest animated film follows young Miguel through an adventure that teaches him about family and remembrance. Code Switch's Shereen Marisol Meraji joins the panel to talk about the film and the Disney short Olaf's Frozen Advenure.
The panel checks in with the ABC sitcom Black-ish, then share what's making them happy this week. Guests: Brittany Luse and Eric Eddings, co-hosts of The Nod.
The panel chats about why they love Lady Bird, the coming-of-age film written and directed by Greta Gerwig and starring Saoirse Ronan.
The gang discusses DC Comics' latest movie, featuring Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, and Cyborg. That, plus What's Making Us Happy this week. Guests: NPR Music
The panel tackles Kenneth Branagh's new Agatha Christie remake — and picks a few recommendations for when you just want to snuggle under blankets and watch a murder get solved. Guests: Weekend Edition Editor Barrie Hardymon and Librarian Margaret H. Willison.
All Things Considered host Ari Shapiro joins the panel to disuss This Is Us, NBC's hit family drama. Then, All Things Considered Host Audie Cornish tags in for a chat about ABC's new sitcom Speechless. Plus, what's making us happy this week. (This episode originally aired on December 6, 2016.)
The Pop Culture Happy Hour gang answer some pop culture advice questions, including balancing recaps with television consumption and if you should try to expand your girlfriend's pop culture tastes.
The panel takes on the latest from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, with help from Code Switch co-host and established Taika Waititi fan Shereen Marisol Meraji.
After a highly successful first season, the Netflix monster mystery returns. But does it overcome the challenges that have plagued sequels for decades? Guest: TV Critic Eric Deggans.
The panel discusses American Vandal, the Netflix mockumentary series that's a hilariously precise dissection of our cultural fascination with true crime narratives. Guest: Mallory Ortberg of Slate's Dear Prudence.
Author, comedian, and fake internet judge John Hodgman talks about his new book Vacationland, mediating internet disputes, writing a serious book after a lot of fake facts, and lots more.
NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith joins the panel to talk about the oddly successful and often bizarre ABC series that brings entrepreneurs to beg for money from rich people.
Actor Tom Hanks talks to host Linda Holmes about his new short story collection Uncommon Type, the cosmos, David S. Pumpkins, Nora Ephron, men dancing in shrimp costumes, and how the film industry is changing.
NBC's Will & Grace is backfor at least two revival seasons, more than 10 years after it went off the air the first time. But is the sitcom still relevant in 2017? Guests: Tobin Low and Kathy Tu, Co-Hosts of Nancy from WNYC Studios.
A discussion of the NBC comedy The Good Place, which stars Kristen Bell and Ted Danson. We're big fans of the show, and it's from one of the creators of Parks and Recreation and Brooklyn Nine-Nine. It's funny and weird and packed with jokes, and it's all about the afterlife. Guest: Producer Emeritus and Music Director Mike Katzif.
Writer Chris Klimek joins Stephen Thompson and Glen Weldon to discuss Denis Villeneuve's sequel to the Ridley Scott cult classic Blade Runner.
This year The Princess Bride turns 30, so we decided to discuss the film and its enduring legacy. Plus, we take a moment to remember rock legend Tom Petty, who died Monday at the age of 66. Guest: Code Switch's Kat Chow.
The new film, starring Emma Stone as Billie Jean King and Steve Carell as Bobby Riggs, the players facing off in one of the most famous tennis matches in history. Plus, what's making us happy this week. Guest: Writer Katie Presley.
Linda Holmes, Stephen Thompson, and Glen Weldon discuss three recent releases then look back at their summer box office predictions.
As summer gives way to fall, blockbusters give way to award contenders. Critics Linda Holmes, Bob Mondello, Tasha Robinson, and Bilal Quershi share some of the best, buzziest and otherwise noteworthy films coming to theaters.
NPR's TV critic joins the gang for a look at this year's Emmy Awards. The Handmaid's Tale, Big Little Lies, Saturday Night Live, Veep and Atlanta all won multiple awards in major categories, on a night that rarely strayed far from current events. Also, we take a moment to remember actor Harry Dean Stanton.
The gang tackles David Simon's new HBO drama about the rise of the adult-film industry in New York's Times Square. And, as always, What's Making Us Happy this week. Guests: Weekend Edition Books Editor Barrie Hardymon and Writer Katie Presley.
It's Been a Minute host Sam Sanders and writer Katie Presley join Glen Weldon and Stephen Thompson for an old favorite: People We're Pulling For. The panel explains why props to a comedian, a TV mogul, a wonderfully eccentric author and a deeply dry character actor all get our stamp of approval.
Weekend Edition Book Editor Barrie Hardymon and librarian Margaret Willison chat with Linda about Outlander, a sexy time-travel fantasy series currently airing on Starz. The series is based on a popular series of romance novels by Diana Gabaldon.
Nancy Meyers is the filmmaker behind comedies like Something's Gotta Give and It's Complicated. Now her daughter, Hallie Meyers-Shyer, is joining the family business with her debut film Home Again, which stars Reese Witherspoon. Host Linda Holmes talks to the mother-daughter team about working together, the challenges of making an indie rom-com, and building worlds through beautiful homes.
Director, writer, and actor Lake Bell talks about the making of her new film I Do... Until I Don't, the way her British friends hang up the phone, and her fascination with unseen voices.
Game of Thrones just wrapped its penultimate season, so we sit down for a spoiler-packed discussion with our pals Gene Demby, Barrie Hardymon, and Tasha Robinson.
Music writers Sarah Ventre and Marissa Lorusso join us to discuss Taylor Swift's new single and a disjointed MTV Video Music Awards hosted by Katy Perry.
The broadcast, cable and streaming networks have a lot on tap for the remainder of 2017. We talk about what we are excited to watch and what we think we survive cancellation
Steven Soderbergh's racetrack heist film opened small for a big director, but its strong cast (Channing Tatum, Adam Driver, and Daniel Craig) and unusual release strategy make it a lot of fun to talk about. Guests: Culture writers Chris Klimek and Danielle Henderson.
Sam Sanders (NPR's It's Been A Minute) joins the panel for the Regrettable Television Pop Quiz, in which the gang shares their knowledge about trashy television of the past and present.
Actress Judith Light talks to host Linda Holmes her roles as Shelly Pfefferman on Transparent, Angela Bower on Who's The Boss?, and Karen Wolek on One Life To Live.
Dark Tower is a snooze, so instead we talk about some of our favorite Stephen King books and film adaptations. Guests: Weekend Edition Books Editor Barrie Hardymon and The Verge's TV and Film Editor Tasha Robinson.
We discuss Kathryn Bigelow's new film Detroit. Its intense and unsettling depictions of police brutality in the summer of 1967, Detroit got under the panel's skin in different ways. Guests: Gene Demby (NPR's Code Switch) and Aisha Harris (Slate).
We check back in on Issa Rae's HBO comedy series Insecure as it kicks off its tighter, more assured second season. Plus, What's Making Us Happy this week. Guest: Brittany Luse, co-host of The Nod podcast.
Film critic Chris Klimek joins us to talk Atomic Blonde, a stylish and visceral spy thriller set in 1989 Berlin. It co-stars Charlize Theron and a really impressive wig.
We review the bonkers space opera Valerian, a passion project of director Luc Besson. Guest: Aisha Harris, host of Slate's Represent podcast.
The "surprising" success of the raunch-com Girls Trip didn't particularly surprise us; we talk about precisely where this "out-of-nowhere" hit came from. Guests: Code Switch's Gene Demby and Slate's Aisha Harris.
NPR Music's Daoud Tyler-Ameen joins the panel for a discussion of the new film Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan's World War II epic.
We sort out the adventures of Dale Cooper and the other residents of Twin Peaks: what works, what doesn't, and whether there's such a thing as "understanding." Plus, we remember George Romero, Martin Landau, and celebrate a new Doctor. Guests: NPR TV critic Eric Deggans and The Verge's TV and Film Editor Tasha Robinson.
All Things Considered host Audie Cornish joins the panel for discussions about Marvel's Spider-Man: Homecoming and Andy Samberg's HBO special Tour de Pharmacy.
First, a discussion of Baby Driver, Edgar Wright's fun new action film with Code Switch co-host Gene Demby and It's Been a Minute host Sam Sanders. Then, Code Switch co-host Shereen Marisol Meraji and the panel dive into what happens when auteur directors helm big film franchises. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
This week, All Things Considered host Audie Cornish joins the panel to chat about how they spent their summers growing up. Plus, a conversation with best friends Jessica St. Clair and Lennon Parham of USA's Playing House.
This week, the panel discusses Netflix's new wrestling comedy GLOW with NPR's Code Switch Kat Chow. Then, we bring you a conversation we recently had in Los Angeles with Master of None actress and writer Lena Waithe.
This week, the panel talks about Wonder Woman — or Diana, Princess of Themyscira — with NPR Books Editor Petra Mayer. Then, they shift the spotlight to the stage to talk about the Tony Awards with critics Trey Graham and Chris Klimek.
This week, we bring you two unaired segments from our fall tour. First, All Things Considered host Audie Cornish helps us figure out when to quit a television show — and when to stick it out to the bitter end. Then, Mallory Ortberg (Slate's Dear Prudence) answers some pop culture advice questions.
This week the panel is prepping for a few live shows, so we decided to revisit one of our favorite episodes from 2015. Code Switch's Kat Chow joins us for a chat about the Netflix series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and and the line between inspired and derivative when it comes to culture.
Film critic Chris Klimek joins the panel for a chat about the new Ridley Scott film Alien: Covenant and HBO's Veep.
On this week's show, Gene Demby from NPR's Code Switch and NPR TV critic Eric Deggans join us for a conversation about the second season of Master Of None and the very silly film Snatched.
The panel talks about the harrowing TV adaptation of Margaret Atwood's dystopian novel, then switches gears to check in on the NBC comedy Great News, from – among others – executive producer Tina Fey. Guests: Code Switch's Leah Donnella and Weekend Edition Books Editor Barrie Hardymon
This week we discuss Marvel's space action-comedy Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2. Plus, a conversation we recently had in Chicago with comedian and writer W. Kamau Bell.
All Things Considered Host Audie Cornish joins us for our annual summer movie preview. We break down what we are excited to watch, what we think will smash box office records, and what we think will lose millions of dollars.
Code Switch's Gene Demby and critic Chris Klimek join the gang for a discussion of latest installment of the Fast and the Furious franchise. Then, it's time for a discussion of clapbacks and feuds recorded live in Chicago with our NPR's Sam Sanders.
The panel is on the road this week, so we are bringing you two special treats. First, you'll hear an episode of Code Switch that explores how comics are used as spaces for mapping race and identity. Then, we revisit our conversation about RuPaul's Drag Race which first aired in 2014.
The panel dissects the new podcast S-Town, the latest project from the team behind Serial and This American life. Then, they'll chat about Chewing Gum, a british sex comedy that's now streaming on Netflix. Guest: Librarian Margaret H. Willison.
First we review Dave Chappelle's new Netflix stand-up specials with Code Switch's Gene Demby and For Colored Nerds co-host Brittany Luse. Then, we discuss the action comedy CHiPs with Morning Edition host David Greene. Plus, what's making us happy.
The panel discusses a tale as old as time, Disney's remake of Beauty and the Beast. Then, they share what bands and films they saw at SXSW. Guest: Katie Presley, Bitch Media's music editor.
Comedian Guy Branum joins the panel for a discussion about why some fads and memes endure and others fade away. Then, the panel offer some pop culture advice to listeners. Plus, NPR Books Editor Petra Mayer talks to Neil Gaiman about his new book Norse Mythology.
This week, we'll get very unsettled by the very successful film, Get Out, and we'll catch up with the intrigue of The Americans as it returns for its fifth season. Plus, what's making us happy this week. Guests: Code Switch's Kat Chow and Gene Demby.
This week, we'll drop in on the volatile suburban surroundings of HBO's Big Little Lies, and we'll consider Ryan Murphy's high-drama look at Hollywood legends in Feud. Guest: NPR Editor Barrie Hardymon.
It wasn't a terribly exciting or unusual Academy Awards telecast — until all of a sudden, it made all kinds of history.
NPR film critic Bob Mondello joins us for our annual Oscars Omnibus: We talk the nominees for Best Picture, some of the hottest races, and make some predictions we may regret later. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
Morning Edition Host David Greene talks with singer and actor Justin Timberlake about how it feels to be an Oscar nominee, his boy band past, and progress on his upcoming album. (A shorter version of this interview aired on Morning Edition on February 10, 2017.)
Television critic Alan Sepinwall joins us for a discussion of the new FX series Legion, which is based on an obscure X-Men character and adapted by Fargo's Noah Hawley. Then, they'll chat about Planet Earth II, the BBC nature documentary series that is now airing in the United States.
Glen Weldon talks to author Philip Pullman about his return to the world of Lyra Belacqua, who we first met in The Golden Compass. The first volume of the new trilogy will be published in October.
NPR Music's Jacob Ganz and Stephen Thompson join Linda Holmes for a discussion of Beyoncé, Adele, Chance the Rapper, Bruno Mars, and much more.
NPR Politics Podcast alum Sam Sanders joins the panel for The LEGO Batman Movie. Then, Code Switch's Kat Chow sits in for a chat about MasterChef Junior and other kids reality competition shows. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
Code Switch's Gene Demby joins Stephen Thompson and Linda Holmes for a look at Super Bowl LI. The New England Patriots won with a huge fourth-quarter push, and also featured a high-flying halftime show from Lady Gaga, who mixed traditional Americana with doing her own thing.
NPR film critic Bob Mondello joins the panel for a roundup of all the films nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature: I Am Not Your Negro, OJ: Made in America, Fire at Sea, 13th, and Life, Animated. Then they'll discuss The Salesman, Iran's entry into the best Foreign Language Film category. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
Sarah D. Bunting of Previously.TV and the Extra Hot Great podcast joins the panel for a review of Riverdale, the CW's dark and sexy reimagining of Archie Comics (yes, really). Then it's onto other teen soaps from Dawson's Creek, Beverley Hills 90210, and The OC. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
Mary Tyler Moore died Wednesday at 80 years old. Host Linda Holmes talks to Crazy Ex-Girlfriend star and co-creator Rachel Bloom about how one very funny woman of television influenced many others.
Stephen Thompson and Glen Weldon round up this year's Oscar nominations. As widely predicted, La La Land racked up the most nominations, while Moonlight made a strong showing, as did Hell or High Water.
Code Switch Co-Host Gene Demby joins the panel for a discussion of the nutty new HBO series The Young Pope, which stars Jude Law. Then, the panel reviews the wonderful western Hell or High Water, which is the second-best reviewed film on Rotten Tomatoes of 2016.
Morning Edition host David Greene talks with musician and Snapchat star DJ Khaled about the keys to his success, getting lost in a jet ski, and the importance of comfy pillows.
Brittany Luse, host at Gimlet and co-host of For Colored Nerds, joins NPR's Linda Holmes, Stephen Thompson, and Glen Weldon for a chat about Hidden Figures, the new historical drama starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Janelle Monae. Then, the panel reviews Netflix's One Day a Time, a well-reviewed remake of the classic Norman Lear sitcom.
Linda Holmes, Glen Weldon, and Stephen Thompson wrap up the 2017 Golden Globe awards, including La La Land's sweep, the surprising wins in television, and Meryl Streep's political acceptance speech.
Weekend Edition Books Editor Barrie Hardymon joins the panel for a discussion of mystery series Sherlock, which stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. Then the panel takes a few moments to remember some of the people who passed away recently, including Carrie Fisher, George Michael, and Debbie Reynolds. Plus, what's making us happy.
Code Switch's Kat Chow joins the panel as they say goodbye to 2016 by revisiting their resolutions and predictions from last year and making new ones for 2017. Plus, what's making us happy.
Sam Sanders of NPR's Politics Podcast joins the panel for a roundup of their favorite movies, songs, TV shows, and writing of the year. Then, they revisit some of the things they covered earlier in 2016—big blockbusters and box office flips, TV shows that might survive cancellation, and a Broadway phenomenon that continues to dominate the culture.
Lauren Ober, the host of The Big Listen, joins Linda Holmes, Glen Weldon, and Stephen Thompson for a roundup of their favorite podcast episodes of the year.
NPR Music's Daoud Tyler-Ameen joins the panel for a discussion of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Then, the panel discusses the romantic musical La La Land, which stars Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
All Things Considered host Ari Shapiro joins the panel to disuss This Is Us, NBC's hit family drama. Then, All Things Considered Host Audie Cornish tags in for a chat about ABC's new sitcom Speechless. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
Linda Holmes chats with Emmanuel Hapsis, the host of KQED's The Cooler and a bonafide millenial, about the plausibility of the TV Land show Younger.
Glen Weldon and All Things Considered host Audie Cornish discuss the first season of HBO's densely plotted science fiction series.
Margaret H. Willison and Daisy Rosario join the panel for a discussion of the return of Gilmore Girls that's now streaming on Netflix. Then, they chat about Moana, the new Disney film starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson that features music from Lin-Manuel Miranda. Plus, what's making us happy.
Comedian and actor Kumail Nanjiani joins the gang for our live show recorded at the Regent Theater in Los Angeles. First, they discuss romantic comedies, a favorite subject of Kumail and Linda. Then, it's time for a quiz all about disguises. Plus, what's making us happy.
Critic Chris Klimek joins the panel for a chat about the inventive sci-fi film Arrival. Then, the gang shares some of their picks for pop culture serotonin: music, movies, and comedy albums that will boost your mood. Plus, what's making us happy.
Code Switch's Gene Demby and Kat Chow join Stephen Thompson and Glen Weldon for a discussion of the trippy Marvel blockbuster Doctor Strange. Then, they chat about the critically acclaimed indie Moonlight. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
Tomorrow is Election Day, so Stephen Thompson and Glen Weldon guide us through the state of political comedy. Topics include Saturday Night Live, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, and Full Frontal with Samantha Bee.
The Pop Culture Happy Hour team is recovering from our west coast tour, so we decided to bring you one of our favorite episodes of the year: Look around, look around at how lucky we are to be alive right now: We didn't want to throw away our shot at talking about Lin-Manuel Miranda's acclaimed musical Hamilton. We decided OK, so we're doing this. But we had to wait for it. Then, a few weeks ago, Code Switch's Gene Demby joined us in the greatest city of the world so we could finally be in the room where it happens. Just you wait, just you wait...
It's a Halloween Spooktacular! We bring you two Halloween-themed segments from our west coast tour: Mallory Ortberg (Dear Prudence, The Toast.) joins us for a Halloween candy debate, and All Things Considered Host Audie Cornish sits down for our super-difficult Halloween quiz. And as always, we close with what's making us happy this week.
The Pop Culture Happy Hour team is traveling this week, so we bring you two of our favorite segments. First, NPR Editor Barrie Hardymon joins the panel for a discussion about Jane the Virgin. Then, Code Switch's Kat Chow and the gang discuss Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.