CFC: Pop vs. Public History — Why Do We Love Nonfiction?

From Monica: I want to talk about Seabiscuit.  Being an archetypal precocious horse girl, at age 9 Laura Hillenbrand’s Seabiscuit (1999) was the first nonfiction book I remember reading. It was the first time I was conscious of the popular weight attributed to the New York Times bestseller list, and for once my childhood interests…

Call for Comments: IFTFY??? I think you mean GTFO!!!

From Mav: I saw an article a few weeks ago that has been kicking around in my head ever since. The idea of “IFTFY” or “I fixed that for you”. I think might be bullshit! Maybe… The more I think about it, the more I realize I need to talk some of the concept through…

e174. The Arthurian Roundtable Roundtable

We live in an era of constant reboots and updates to well known IP franchises. People (including us) like to complain about it, but honestly, well known franchises do very well at the box office… otherwise people wouldn’t keep doing it. But of all the superheroes, transformers, terminators and star wars that keep coming back…

Call for Comments: There’s a TV Show About an English Department… So We Have to Discuss It?

From Hannah: On August 20, Netflix will release its new mini-series The Chair featuring Sandra Oh. It also happens to be about an English department at the fictional, elite Pembroke University. A new trailer dropped a few weeks back and, well, I already have thoughts: https://youtu.be/eOqtBtWGl1Q There’s a conversation that goes beyond this one show.…

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,…

e172. (More Drinking Than Swearing…) The Culture Of Alcohol

We’ve always had a tag on our show of “the weekly pseudo-academic roundtable with drinking and swearing” but honestly, it’s usually more of the latter. We might be drinking while we record the show, but it really has no bearing on the listener Honestly, the alcohol is usually incidental. Not this week! This week we…

Call For Comments: On Multiple Readings and Variant Interpretations

From Mav: I was having an interesting conversation with friend-of-the-show Andrew Darowski the other day about the idea of multiple readings. For those who don’t know, in addition to the Protagonist Podcast, Andrew is host of a podcast called Disney Animation Minute Essentials where he and his wife Kestra step through classic Disney films one…

Call for Comments: Podcasting Yankees in King Arthur’s Court

From Hannah: I can trace my first encounters with the King Arthur mythology to two (very different) Disney adaptations: The Sword and the Stone (1963) and A Kid in King Arthur’s Court (1995). That my interest in King Arthur began with these, er, interpretations of their source material (not to mention the earlier texts) is…

e171. Summertime! Time to Kick Back and Unwind

Somehow, summertime media is special. Or at least, we seem to think it is. We have summertime blockbusters. We have summertime beach reads. We have summer TV specials and songs of the summer. It definitely FEELS like there is something that makes pop culture media “summery.” But we’re hard pressed to say exactly what it…