Summary: Popspotting is a pop-culture blog and show by Jen and Ryan, long-time podcasters based in Hawaii. Popspotting covers movies, television, music, books, art, tech, and pop culture news. Reader and listener participation are a key part of the show, with regular and special segments, including contests and trivia.
For TV Tuesday we talk about two shows with unique twists. First, we review the pilot of "Awake," the new NBC series starring Jason Isaacs and created by Kyle Killen (Lone Star, The Beaver). Then we confess our love for "The Booth at the End," a web video serial by Christopher Kubasik.
We're back after an extra week off with a look at Disney's "John Carter," which opens March 9. It was one of the movies we said we were looking forward to in 2012... but one we were also a little worried about, given how ridiculous the trailers were. But with Edgar Rice Burroughs' sci-fi classic as a guide, and with Andrew Stanton at the helm, we were still on board. Add the handsome Taylor Kitsch on screen and the talented Michael Giacchino behind the score, and we simply couldn't miss it.
We wrap up the week with your takes on "Justified," "The River," and "Breaking Bad" on the tube, and "John Carter," "Hunger Games" and "Chronicle" on the big screen.
Today's PopTalk & Trivia guest is Mike from Virginia, a long-time "LOST" fan (his license plate is "STILOST") and Transmission listener (since October 2005) and a huge TV and music fan. His picks included Roger Waters' "The Wall Live" tour for 2012, "Music From the North Country: Jayhawks Anthology," and several female singer-songwriters: Shelby Lynne, Allison Moorer, Tift Merritt, Brandi Carlile, and Susan Greenbaum, a personal friend who just released her new album, "This Life."
For every good movie, a sequel is soon to follow. (For every bad movie, too, it seems.) So we revisit one of our favorite "Wildcard Wednesday" topics from last year. It's another "Flickchart Faceoff," in which we turn to everyone's favorite dangerously addictive movie site (made in Florida!) to set us up with a series of movie matchups. We then judge which is more worthy, likely revealing more of our ignorance and bad taste in the process. But that's okay. The best part is hearing from you exactly why we picked the wrong ones!
Today for TV Tuesday, we focus on the FX Network. First, we catch up on "Justified," a show we only started watching because of your strong recommendations. We focus on the second season, which we marathoned to be ready for Season 3 (now underway). Then we shift gears to share our love of "Archer," described as "James Bond meets Arrested Development."
We shift gears and go a little art house this week as we check out a pair of films that took the film festival circuit by storm. First, "Meek's Cutoff," a sparse exploration of trust and survival off the Oregon Trail in the 1800s, based on a true story. Then, "Certified Copy," a day in the life of a man and a woman who may or may not have a history together.
We start Feedback Friday with thoughts on "Touch" on FOX, created by Tim Kring of "Heroes" and starring Kiefer Sutherland. At least a couple of listeners liked it much more than we did. We also touch on "Alcatraz," "Terriers," and "Misfits." And our "Downton Abbey" love prompts a recommendation of the BBC's 2004 miniseries "North & South." We also share feedback on our "Hawaii 101" show, and a pair of music recommendations that could not be more different.
Today brings an especially memorable entry in our PopTalk & Trivia Thursday series, as guest Megan from Pennsylvania kicks things off with an award-winning rooster crow. Her recommendations range from a book to a television miniseries to a wacky game app. Then we put her top-ranked trivia night talents to the test... with a special guest appearance by our daughter, Katie!
For Wildcard Wednesday, we survey the year ahead, and share our most-anticipated movies of 2012. Ryan and Jen both share their top five picks, plus a few runners up. They include "The Dark Knight Rises," "Moonrise Kingdom," "Cloud Atlas," "The Hobbit" and "The Master" for Ryan, and "Magic Mike," "Dark Shadows," "Looper," "The Hunger Games" and "Django Unchained" for Jen.
ABC's new paranormal adventure series "The River" premieres tonight on ABC. We weigh in on the first two hours for TV Tuesday. Created by Oren Peli of "Paranormal Activities" fame, the show stars Bruce Greenwood, Joe Anderson, Paul Blackthorne, Paulina Gaitan, Leslie Hope, Eloise Mumford, Shaun Parkes, Thomas Kretschmann, and Daniel Zacapa.
We go back to the multiplex to check out a recent release for Movie Monday. We didn't know anything going in, but coming out, we were thoroughly entertained. "Chronicle" comes from the relatively new team of director Josh Trank and writer Max Landis (son of director John Landis) and stars Dane DeHaan, Michael B. Jordan, and Alex Russell as a group of Seattle teens who suddenly find themselves with special powers, and the problems that come with them.
We kick off Feedback Friday focusing on the written word, with your thoughts on books like "Ready Player One" and "Hunger Games." Then it's onto movie talk, touching on "Midnight in Paris" and "Mission Impossible." Listeners also send in reports of movie theater innovations across the country. Finally, we get to your top songs from 1992.
Today's guest only moved to New York two months ago, but she manages to share some of the ambiance of city life along with her picks: "30 Rock" on NBC, "Revenge" on ABC, and "Breaking Bad" on AMC. Andrea Zuniga (@iandrea) once had us on her podcast, so we get to turn the tables with music trivia.
As we roll into February, we figured it was time we went back to the books. Today Jen reviews "An Education," a memoir by Lynn Barber, and "John Dies at the End," a web serial by John Wong of Cracked.com fame that became a book and has now become a movie.