The Podcast: Billboard Charts 2000!

It’s that other, similar but different time of year again: Time for us at to get together and take a selected tour through the full-year Billboard Hot 100 chart, talking about the singles we love, hate, and swear we’ve never heard in our lives. About the length of a killer mix tape, this episode crams in analysis, nostalgia, tangents, and everything else, covering, I don’t know, like 30 different pop songs across genres and tastes. It’s like what we did in 1999 and 1996, only this time it’s the YEAR 2000, BABY! So join Rob, Jesse, Marisa, and Jason on a wild ride through the first and/or last year of the millennium! And the Willennium! And the time when terrible pop-country dominated the charts!

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The Mini-Podcast: Desperados, starring Nasim Pedrad

The podcast is generally not a one-movie-at-a-time type show. We cover filmographies, genres, franchises… and sometimes, individual movies that simply demand our attention. For reasons we cannot fully explain, Desperados, a new Netflix comedy starring Nasim Pedrad, was such a movie. I learned this movie was dropping on Netflix like three days before it happened, and I was so excited that fellow A.V. Club freelancer, SNL fan, and all-around delightful pop-culture writer LaToya Ferguson was equally excited and willing to talk to me about this unexpected Nasim star vehicle! So here we are, talking about Nasim Pedrad, Desperados, and which SNL stars we’d love to see getting the Judd Apatow-style 2.5-hour semi-autobiographical treatment, among other topics. You’re welcome, nerds!

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The Podcast: Top Movies of Summer 2000

It’s that time of year again: Time for us at to get together and go on a long, wild, fast-paced trip down memory lane to look at the highest-grossing movies at the U.S. domestic box office from twenty years ago. This year, that brings us up to the year 2000, and we may be feeling especially nostalgic given that the summer 2020 movie season is more or less canceled. But not to worry! You can re-experience summer movies past with our own longest-running franchise! From the studio that brought you 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996, 1995, and 1994 comes our take on the blockbusters of 2000, including:

    • Star vehicles for Cage, Murphy, and Crowe!
    • Nathaniel’s quest to see his most anticipated movie of the summer!
    • A weird schoolyard story about one of the stars of The Perfect Storm!
    • One of our most-discussed movies ever, back for another relitigation!
    • Chickens!!!!
    • AND MORE!!!

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The Podcast: SNL at Home (and Season 45), Reviewed

Several friends & fam are regular reviewers of the NBC late-night comedy-variety series Saturday Night Live, and we make it our business to check in with the show every season to see how it’s progressing. We did this in 2019, 2018, 2017, 2015, and 2014. The 2020 check-in for SNL was a particularly strange one, as the show switched to non-live, socially-distanced compilation specials for its final three episodes of an abbreviated 18-episode run. Nathaniel, Michael, Marisa, and Jesse got together (virtually) to talk about how these episodes switch up the SNL dynamic, and other highs and lows of Season 45.

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The Podcast: Streaming Recommendations for Quarantine

Well, it’s been a few months and many of us are still at home in some manner of quarantine, which means we’re all looking for shows and movies for our boredom-and-anxiety-alleviating streaming regimen. In this multi-part special, a all-star crew goes around and recommends a whole bunch of #content for you to enjoy while stuck at home. Marisa, Sara, Nathaniel, Jeremy, Ben, Jon, and Jesse all weigh in on all different kind of stuff on all different kinds of streaming services, whether you’re rocking Netflix, Amazon Prime, Criterion Channel, Hulu, Disney Plus, HBO, or even, yes, Apple. The first installment covers Netflix, Amazon, and some feature films; the second focuses on Hulu, Disney Plus, and Apple!

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The Podcast: Mixtapes of Yore

Inspired by a recent A.V. Club Q&A, Sara suggested that one of our quarantine-recorded podcast episodes might involve looking back on the (lost?) art of the mix. The painstaking process of committing various songs to cassette tape may be all but dead in most of the world, but it lives on in our otherwise chilly little hearts, so Sara, Ben, Marisa, and Jesse got together (virtually) to discuss mix-making and all of its attendant rules and emotional landmining. Nostalgia rules on this episode that offers a peak into our various high school, college, and adult-nerd experiences! As a bonus, Marisa and I have included the full picture of our first mixtapes to each other after the jump!

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The Podcast: 1999 Albums – Keep It Like a Secret by Built to Spill

You thought we were done just because 1999 is no longer 20 years ago? NOPE! Our miniseries on notable albums from the blessed year of 1999 continues into 2020, because you know what, we’re all kind of on pause right now anyway, and wouldn’t it make you feel good to think back to what you were doing 21 years ago? Built to Spill (the original BTS) was touring behind Keep It Like a Secret, which turned 21 this past January, and was the subject of its own nostalgia tour just last year. So (back in the fall) Marisa, Sara, Randy, Rob, and Jesse got together to discuss how it’s weathered the years since then, because the plan keeps coming up again.

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BIRDS OF PREY and the DC Movie Visual Aesthetic

There is a scene around halfway through Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) where One Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), bon vivant, high-spirited thief, and ex-girlfriend of the Joker, enters a police station and fights her way through multiple officers, on her way to abduct a young pickpocket. Rather than leaving all-out carnage in her wake, Harley employs a serious of non-lethal methods: a beanbag gun, confetti bombs, and brightly colored smoke. (She also beats the shit out of a few of them, but no one appears to die.)

Normally, this would seem like another superhero movie hedging its bets, indulging violence while avoiding any real consequences—and to some degree, it probably is that. But Birds of Prey has an emphatic R rating (albeit seemingly more for the convenience of saying “fuck” as often as it wants than for its occasional gore), so these nontraditional weapons serve a purpose beyond appeasing the MPAA. The color-coordinated smokebombs and glitter explosions aren’t calling cards Harley Quinn leaves behind so much as the character art-directing her own music video as she goes along.
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The Gala Bonus MiniPodcast: Oscars 2020!

One of my pet peeves about the Oscars is the lack of clarity when people talk about the Oscars from a certain year; the “2020” Oscars will be airing in 2020 but they’re about the movies from 2019. If you say “the 2019 Oscars” and you’re talking about the year Green Book won, it is confusing. Because Green Book is not a 2019 film. Do not put that on 2019, guys.

Anyway, after the crew talked> about the actual best movies of the year, we went on to talk about the Oscars’ version of the best movies of the year. The two have some overlap but, as ever, they are pretty different things. In this fast and loose episode, we, uh, air some grievances, discuss SNUBS, and talk about popes.

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