What The Bell?

Apr 14, 2017

To honor Philadelphia's iconic symbol of freedom that doesn't ring anymore, the Liberty Bell, contestants hear audio clues about people and things that have "bell" in the name and ring in to guess what--or who--they're about!

Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

The Final Drow

Apr 14, 2017

Rev up your reverse word repository! In this game, contestants hear clues to a well-known phrase with the last word reversed, and try to guess what that word is. For example, if we said, "My roommate is a VILLAIN, but we get along because our motto is LIVE AND LET BLANK," you'd answer, "evil..." which is the word "live" backwards.

Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

Amy Sedaris: Etsy Or Smithsonian?

Apr 14, 2017

Comedian Amy Sedaris isn't sure if her cult Comedy Central show Strangers With Candy, which she co-created with Stephen Colbert, Paul Dinello, and Mitch Rouse, could be made today. "You just can't make fun of anything anymore," she told host Ophira Eisenberg at the Keswick Theatre outside Philadelphia. "That's what we did in Strangers-- we hit everybody, we made fun of everybody, maybe that's one reason we got away with it back then."

Our team is just back from a wonderful live show in Chicago — thank you all for coming! — with W. Kamau Bell as our special guest and Sam Sanders in our fourth chair. (Both were wonderful.) We'll have audio from that show in your feeds later, but this week, we've got a special edition.

First up, we bring you a segment Glen Weldon did with our buddy Gene Demby of Code Switch about diversity in comics. It originally aired on the Code Switch podcast, but we thought we'd bring it to you here as well.

Has any movie franchise ever swole up more unrecognizably than The Fast & the Furi-ad? Its opening heat, back in 2001, was just a humble Point Break knockoff. Fourteen years later, Furious 7 overcame the death of its second banana, Paul Walker, during production to gross a billion-and-a-half dollars. By then, the series had reinvented itself as an globetrotting heist/spy/wrestling franchise, one as reliant on digital animation and unbound by verisimilitude as any superhero epic. Why just rip off Point Break when you can rip off ... everything?

Tucked deep into the Bolivian jungle — through swarms of disease-carrying mosquitoes, a river flush with voracious piranha, and hidden gauntlets of hostile natives — the elusive civilization in The Lost City of Z sounds like El Dorado or The Fountain of Youth, one of those mythical paradises that conquistadors slaughtered many to seek.

You are not going to find a better title for a movie this year than My Entire High School Sinking Into The Sea. But the new indie animated film from comics artist Dash Shaw, based on an earlier story by him, is more than its name, or perhaps it's more accurate to say it's exactly as fun as its name. The film is a snarky back-of-the-class doodle about a high school collapsing on the foundation of its own stupidity, with a voice cast hailing exclusively from the cool kids table (Jason Schwartzman, Lena Dunham, Reggie Watts, Maya Rudolph).

"A sheltered life can be daring too," the Southern writer Eudora Welty wrote in her 1984 memoir, One Writer's Beginnings. Writing about what and whom she saw around her, Welty enjoyed robust literary fame without ever marrying or moving out of her parents' house in Jackson, Mississippi.

F. Scott Fitzgerald's beloved American novel The Great Gatsby is about the messiness of chasing the American dream. But author Stephanie Powell Watts says something about the book left her unsatisfied.

"I loved it when I was a kid and read it for the first time. ... But subsequent readings, I felt like I'm seeing other things. I'm seeing all of these black characters — never thought about them before. I'm seeing the women and the tiny, tiny roles that they have in the book, and I want them to speak. I want to hear what they have to say."

Many people are drawn to Emily Dickinson because of her mysterious life — the brilliant poet rarely left her family home in Amherst, Mass., and her work wasn't recognized until after her death.

But British film director Terence Davies says it was her poetry, more than her personal life, that drew him in. Davies discovered Dickinson on television. An actress was reading one of her poems and afterwards Davies immediately ran out to buy one of her collections.