Three Pop Culture Podcasts (Besides the M&M Report) Worth Your Time


The M&M Report, my podcast with my friend Devin Mitchell, is on hiatus this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday. In case you’ve missed our first eleven episodes, you can catch up here. We’ve scrutinized TV pilots, debated the merits of Kanye West and Justin Timberlake, dissected thrilling Oscar contenders and revealed our pop culture preferences. Our friends Matt Waskiewicz, Chloe Johnson, Rachel Lomot and Alex Patel have joined us to chat about Breaking Bad, Arcade Fire, Gilmore Girls, Key and Peele and more. I’ve really enjoyed working with Devin to put together a fun and (hopefully) substantive show each week, and it’s been very exciting to see the podcast evolve.

Now that we’ve taken a week off, though, you’ve probably got a 40-45 minute hole in your weekly schedule. (Right? Roll with me here.) I’ve got you covered. Here are three pop culture podcasts worth checking out in your spare time.

1. The Firewall and Iceberg Show
HitFix’s diligent television critics Alan Sepinwall and Daniel Fienberg break down TV premieres for new and returning shows, deep-dive into buzzworthy episodes of their favorite shows and answer insightful questions from their thoughtful listeners, all while delivering their trademark blend of antagonistic banter and affectionate ribbing.

Key Motifs: Dan “hates” Seinfeld; Dan loves The CW, “NBC sucks!”

2. NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour
NPR pop-culture blogger Linda Holmes hosts this weekly program with her friends and NPR colleagues Stephen Thompson, Trey Graham and Glen Weldon. Their discussions sometimes analyze a specific piece of culture in detail, but the hosts more often provide a wide overview of their seemingly unlimited pop-culture knowledge with a given theme. Grab a pen and paper while you’re listening – chances are good that Linda and her three companions will mention a movie, TV show, album, song, play, book, YouTube video or pop-culture tchotchke worth checking out.

Key Motifs: Stephen mocks himself, Stephen mentions his kids, Linda calls someone “pal” or “buddy,” Glen doesn’t feel emotions

Hollywood Prospectus on The Grantland Network
Co-hosts Andy Greenwald and Chris Ryan have been friends since their sophomore year of college, so they’ve had several decades to hone their rapport. They’ve got a different energy than some of their pop culture critic brethren – younger, hipper, zippier. But they’ve got the smarts to back up their occasional flights of friendly fancy. Whether they’re snarking about the latest episode of Homeland or reminiscing on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of Wu-Tang Clan’s debut album, Chris and Andy deliver sharp pop-culture commentary with a side of postmodern snark.

Key Motifs: Jennifer Lawrence is awesome. The Bourne Legacy is awesome. Homeland is not awesome. Philadelphia is awesome. Kanye West is awesome.

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