e181. Entertainment and Other Unions — IATSE Solidarity

Over the past year, our viewing consumption habits have changed a lot. We spent months indoors streaming everything — including new release films — largely through new media platforms like Netflix and Disney Plus. These new production models have drastically changed box office results, profit models, and production budgets that reverberate across the industry —…

e179. ImproveReality?

Several weeks ago, we did a show on how stand-up comedy works in the middle of a pandemic. We talked about the transition that comedians went through to move a traditionally “in-person” art form to an entirely virtual environment. But what about other art forms? Lots of performances that at least seem to “require” a…

e175. Game Studies: Ludology vs. Narratology

We don’t talk about games as much as we should on this show, but arguably they’re one of the most enduring mediums of popular culture. They’re certainly one of the most popular. There’s much comparison of modern video games to movies. This makes sense… if we want people to consider games to be a legitimate…

e173. War of the Readings

The Internet has one main purpose: arguing about things that don’t really matter. I’m sure you’ve seen this, people will fight over whether a movie was good or bad, what the significance of a particular scene of a TV show was, what was the hidden theme of a book, or perhaps most notably today… should…

Call for Comments: Narratology v. Ludology

From Katya: I recently saw a TikTok from Dominic Myers (@gamestudies101) that summarizes the narratology v. ludology split in game studies. Check out their summary because it’s a good one but, simply put, ludology argues that games are a unique medium because they include interactive game mechanics that are distinct from other representational forms. Narratology,…

e167. Considering the Fanboy Gaze

After last week’s primer on the male gaze, we wanted to spend some time thinking about the ways in which it could be complicated. What happens when we try to apply those concepts to characters not normally considered “male gazey”? What happens when a presumed male viewer is asked to identify with a female characters?…

e166. So… What is the Male Gaze Anyway?

Sometimes academic terms bleed over into the popular lexicon and gets used by people almost as second nature without anyone really bothering to think about what it means. “The Male Gaze”, is one of those terms. It gets used in both academic and popular pop culture criticism, but often without definition. There’s simply a vague…

Call for Comments: She’s Not Like Other Girls! Introducing the Fanboy Gaze

From Mav (with Matt Linton): We’ve talked a lot on our show about Laura Mulvey’s theory of the “the male gaze”. In short, the male gaze describes the tendency of narratives to position female characters primarily as objects of desire to be consumed by male protagonists and readers. It argues that regardless of the reader’s…

Call for Comments: The Male Gaze and its Discontents

From Katya: This week we’re revisiting the Male Gaze. I know we’ve been here before but we have a string of guests coming up offering their own spin on various “gazes” and related subjects so we thought it was worth a revisit. (If you’d like to check out our previous conversations, check out some of…

e163. The Secret World of American Girl

Pop culture fandom is defined by a hierarchy dedication. It’s easy to watch nine Star Wars movies; how much of the Expanded Universe do you know? Anyone can watch a couple dozen Marvel movies, but “the real fan” has bagged and boarded Silver Age originals! Sure, maybe you’ve sat through all 11.5 hours of LOTR,…