Pop Culture Happy Hour

by NPR (podcasts@npr.org) · · · · 144 subscribers

Get obsessed with us. Five days a week, Pop Culture Happy Hour serves you recommendations and commentary on the buzziest movies, TV, music, books, videogames and more. Join arts journalists Linda Holmes, Glen Weldon, Stephen Thompson, and Aisha Harris - plus a rotating cast of guest pop culture aficionados. The Happy Hour team leaves room at the table for exploring a range of reactions and opinions on every bit of the pop universe. From lowbrow to highbrow to the stuff in between, they take it all with a shot of cheer.

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In the action comedy _The Unbearable Weight Of Massive Talent,_ Nicolas Cage plays a fictionalized Nicolas Cage. This down-on-his-luck version of the actor must get out of a jam after he is offered a million dollars to attend the birthday party of a potentially deadly superfan, played by Pedro Pascal. …
Our Flag Means Death April 21, 2022
The hilarious HBO Max comedy series _Our Flag Means Death_ follows the misadventures of Stede Bonnet, a posh aristocrat who decides to give up his pampered life and become a swashbuckling pirate on the high seas. It soon becomes clear that he lacks the ruthlessness necessary to be any good …
Law & Order April 20, 2022
_Law & Order _and its trademark format evolved into a massive TV franchise. The original _Law & Order_ ended in 2010, but this year, in the middle of a broader conversation about policing and the problems with police procedurals, NBC has decided to bring the original _Law & Order _back. …
Moon Knight April 19, 2022
In Marvel's _Moon Knight,_ Oscar Isaac plays Steven, a mild-mannered Londoner who works in a museum gift shop. He also plays Marc, a mercenary who can turn into the mysterious Moon Knight. The series has psychodrama, tomb raiding, and a bad guy (Ethan Hawke) with very familiar motivations. Several episodes …
_The Great Pottery Throw Down_ is one of the gentlest, kindest, and warmest competitive reality shows you will ever see (even when things literally explode). The fifth season aired in the U.K. earlier this year, and it's now streaming on HBO Max. In this encore episode, we talk about a …
_Pachinko_ is a deeply intimate, yet hugely expansive multi-generational historical saga on Apple TV+. Adapted from Min Jin Lee's 2017 novel, the series features several intersecting characters and storylines, but focuses mainly on Sunja, a Korean woman whose family suffers under Japanese imperial rule. With an impressive cast including Lee …
To comedy fans, Jerrod Carmichael is known as a stand-up comic with an acerbic brand of observational humor, and he's starred in his own family sitcom, _The Carmichael Show_. Now his recent HBO special _Rothaniel_ has made headlines. Carmichael comes out publicly as gay for the first time and he …
Julia April 13, 2022
There's been no shortage of biographical material about Julia Child, who in the 1960s became one of the first food television personalities in the United States. HBO Max adds to the story with _Julia_ , a scripted series about her life in the early years of public television's _The French …
A Cameo Quiz April 12, 2022
Cameo is an online service where you can pay a celebrity to record a personalized video message. Maybe it's for your birthday, maybe it's for someone's anniversary — or maybe you're just bored. The videos can costs you tens, hundreds, or even thousands of dollars. In this episode we play …
The latest edition of NPR's Books We Love project rounded up hundreds of books to try to give you just the read you're looking for. Today, we're talking about some of the books we loved in 2021 about life in the United States, present and past.
_Ambulance_ is Michael Bay's latest action movie, and if you think you know exactly what you're going to get — you'd be correct. It's more than two hours of pure, unrelenting adrenaline featuring gun fights, explosions and dizzying camera work. The film stars Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Jake Gyllenhaal as …
Morbius April 7, 2022
In _Morbius,_ Jared Leto stars as the mysterious and brilliant Dr. Michael Morbius, who was born with a rare and debilitating blood disorder. With the aid of vampire bats, he comes up with a treatment that gives him superpowers, but also gives him a taste for blood. The movie takes …
Better Things April 6, 2022
On the FX series _Better Things_ , Pamela Adlon plays Sam Fox, a working actor in L.A. and a single mother to her three children. Sam and her family deal with many familiar pangs of life, like aging and puberty, in ways that are funny, profound, and sometimes cosmic. The …
It might sound like fun to date a glamorous movie star, but in reality, it would probably get very messy. That's the premise of HBO Max's _Starstruck,_ created by and starring New Zealand comedian Rose Matafeo. The romantic comedy series is complicated, funny and charming — treating fame as the …
2022 Grammys Recap April 4, 2022
Last night's Grammys featured wins for Olivia Rodrigo, Silk Sonic, Jon Batiste, and more. Plus we got a lavish stage show with performances from BTS, Lady Gaga, and many others.
_Everything Everywhere All At Once_ is the kind of movie that lives up to its title. It's a zany and profound sci-fi action comedy set in multiple dimensions, bursting with ideas about the pursuit of happiness, familial duty and the meaning of life. It stars Michelle Yeoh as a businesswoman …
The Lost City March 31, 2022
In the new film _The Lost City_ Sandra Bullock plays a romance novelist who is kidnapped by a duplicitous billionaire (Daniel Radcliffe) looking for the real-life lost treasure referenced in her writing. Her cover model (Channing Tatum) embarks on a bumbling quest through the jungle and save her.
Bridgerton March 30, 2022
The Netflix series _Bridgerton_ is back for a second season. And now, Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey) is having his story told with the addition of a new love interest, played by Simone Ashley. Based on a series of Regency romance novels by Julia Quinn, there's still high drama, scandalous gossip …
Human Resources March 29, 2022
The Netflix animated series _Human Resources_ is a spinoff of the filthy and funny _Big Mouth_. The series takes place in an office where the creatures that embody human emotions work, including Hormone Monsters voiced by co- creator Nick Kroll and Maya Rudolph. The show centers on a Love Bug …
2022 Oscars Recap March 28, 2022
The 2022 Oscars included a best picture win for _CODA_ , plus awards for Jessica Chastain, _Dune_ , _Encanto_ , and Jane Campion. But the proceedings were overshadowed when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock. Later in the ceremony, Smith won a best actor Oscar for his role in _King Richard_.