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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The daily online word game Wordle has absolutely exploded in popularity in recent weeks. It's a game that gives you six chances to guess a five-letter word, giving you clues along the way about which letters are right and whether they're in the right places. It's addictive, but it can …
Peloton Jan. 27, 2022
What do _Dancing With The Stars_ , the _Sex and the City_ spinoff, and one of the most viral ads of 2019 have in common? They represent some of the many pop culture touchpoints of the ubiquitous fitness brand Peloton. We talk about the Peloton universe, including it's star-making stable …
A Hero Jan. 26, 2022
_A Hero_ is the latest film from Oscar-winning Iranian director Asghar Farhadi ( _A Separation,_ _The Salesman_ ). In this story, Amir Jadidi plays Rahim, a man who comes into possession of a lost handbag and some coins. But nothing goes as expected, and he becomes everything from a local …
The Book Of Boba Fett Jan. 25, 2022
In the new Disney+ series _The Book of Boba Fett_ , Temuera Morrison brings new layers to the mysterious bounty hunter from the original _Star Wars_ films. The story vacillates between flashbacks to how he escaped his presumed death in _Return of the Jedi_ , and the present day as …
If you're looking to discover a new book, NPR has a marvelous mechanism to help you out: It's called Books We Love, and it's a sortable guide to hundreds of great books from 2021, as handpicked and recommended by the NPR staff. Today we're talking about some of the music-related …
The fantastic new ABC series _Abbott Elementary_ is a sitcom set at a severely underfunded Philadelphia public school. Quinta Brunson is the creator and very funny star of the mockumentary-style comedy, which follows a cast of teachers who are dedicated, but burnt out as they make do with limited resources …
And Just Like That... Jan. 20, 2022
_And Just Like That..._ the ladies of _Sex and the City_ are back. (Well, most of them anyway.) The HBO Max series finds Sarah Jessica Parker, Kristin Davis and Cynthia Nixon reprising their roles as Carrie, Charlotte and Miranda. The new cast features several non-binary characters and performers of color …
Today we're recommending some of the great music documentaries we missed in 2021: _The Velvet Underground_ , _Framing Britney Spears_ , _Controlling Britney Spears,_ and _Tina_.
Sort Of Jan. 18, 2022
The slyly innovative HBO Max series _Sort Of_ follows Sabi, a gender fluid millennial in Toronto trying to figure their life out. Sabi, played by co- creator Bilal Baig, nannies for a family whose matriarch winds up in a coma, placing Sabi in a tough spot between living their life …
_The Tragedy of Macbeth_ adapts Shakespeare's familiar tale of blood and betrayal, dreamlike daggers and stubborn stains. But its stars Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand are significantly older than the leads usually are, which makes the whole thing hit differently. Directed by Joel Coen, the film fuses black-and-white cinematography with …
The Weeknd's Dawn FM Jan. 13, 2022
The Weeknd's album _After Hours_ was one of the biggest hits of 2020, and now the elusive artist is back. He's had a decade of massive highlights from "Blinding Lights" to last year's Super Bowl Halftime Show. His new album is _Dawn FM,_ and it's a set of sleek synth-pop …
Station Eleven Jan. 12, 2022
The HBO Max miniseries _Station Eleven_ begins with a highly contagious and deadly virus wiping out 99 percent of humanity. That might not sound like comfort viewing, but hear us out. The show follows many characters as their individual stories intersect — both in the 100 days after the virus …
C'mon C'mon Jan. 11, 2022
In the movie _C'mon C'mon,_ Joaquin Phoenix plays an audio journalist who, after visiting his sister (played by Gaby Hoffmann), takes his young nephew (played by Woody Norman) on the road as he interviews kids about the world. Along the way, the two learn a lot about each other. Directed …
Hollywood legend Sidney Poitier died last week at age of 94. He was a man of many firsts, including the first Black performer to win the best actor Oscar for the 1963 film _Lilies of the Field._ He was also a humanitarian who was active during the civil rights movement, …
We cover a lot of movies here on _Pop Culture Happy Hour_ , but we can't come close to hitting every great film. Today, we're inviting some of our favorite film critics to share the movies they loved from 2021 — the ones that got past us the first time, …
Yellowjackets Jan. 6, 2022
The Showtime drama _Yellowjackets_ is a series in two halves: In the first part, a plane crashes in 1996, and a high school girls' soccer team is stranded in the Canadian wilderness. The other part follows some of the girls more than 20 years later, as they realize the full …
The Lost Daughter Jan. 5, 2022
In the Netflix film _The Lost Daughter,_ Olivia Coleman plays Leda, a professor on a working holiday in Greece who becomes fascinated by a young mother played by Dakota Johnson. This leads Leda to think about her own past, and to flashbacks in which the young Leda is played by …
This winter, we've been at home, playing games. And we've been exploring games for the Nintendo Switch. We've been trying adventure games and puzzle games, beautiful games and silly games. And in this encore episode, we have a few to recommend.
Actress and icon Betty White died Friday at the age of 99. Her career as a comic actress – on TV, on radio, in movies, and more – lasted more than 80 years. She was probably best known for her work on _The Golden Girls_ and _The Mary Tyler Moore …
It's the end of 2021, and the cusp of a new year — which means we're looking back, _and_ we're looking ahead. It's time to see how we did sticking to our pop culture resolutions we made a year ago. And it's time to make some new ones for 2022.