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.
Today for TV Tuesday we focus on FOX, starting with the preview broadcast of "Touch" starring Kiefer Sutherland, and moving on to the long-awaited broadcast premiere of "Alcatraz" starring Sam Neill, Jorge Garcia and Sarah Jones.
This British sci-fi flick charmed nearly everyone who saw it. Alas, too few people saw it. "Attack the Block" came out last May, but apart from making a small splash at SXSW in Austin and getting a very limited North American release, it has relied on word of mouth and DVD/Blu-Ray rentals and sales to find an audience. Thanks to Matt and other Popspotting listeners, you can count us among its fans as well. Written and directed by Joe Cornish, "Attack the Block" stars John Boyega, Jodie Whittaker, Alex Esmail, Franz Drameh, Leeon Jones, Simon Howard and Nick Frost.
Our 200th show is a completely arbitrary milestone (since we didn't relaunch with our daily format until Episode #53), but it feels good, nonetheless. And fittingly, it's you that provide today's conversation topics, from your own "Best of 2011" picks for movies, TV, music and books, to the brilliance of "Downton Abbey." Popspotting wouldn't exist without your suggestions, reactions, and conversations, so we again thank you for sticking with us. And we hope you'll never hesitate to reach out and speak out on anything under the vast pop culture umbrella.
Today's PopTalk & Trivia Guest is Ms. Wright (@TheRealMsWright) from behind the "Lost Mirror Moments" podcast. She grew up and still lives in the Austin, Texas area. She's a cubicle slave during the week and a photographer on the weekend, She loves reality TV and sci-fi, and is perfectly capable of being into "So You Think You Can Dance" and "LOST" at the same time.
today, we focused on your questions about the Aloha State. What are the different islands? How do people travel among them? What are the best places to visit with kids? It's "Hawaii 101," a general introduction to the 50th state, plus travel advice for first-time visitors. And it's just the start.
For TV Tuesday, it's another single series showcase, as we explore the short-lived "Terriers." It lasted only one season on FX, and for all its brilliance, it was the network's lowest-rated new show ever. So even though it made dozens of "Best Show of 2010" lists, almost nobody saw it, and that's a crime. Now "Terriers" can be found on Netflix, and we explain why it's worth checking out.
It's not a new film, but it's one we missed and really wanted to see. "Midnight In Paris" is Woody Allen's 41st film, and by some accounts, one of his best. Even Quentin Tarantino picked it as his favorite film of 2011. We also got to see the re-release of Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" in 3-D, which includes a new animated short, "Tangled Ever After."
Most of today's show focuses on David Fincher's "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo." We get thumbs up almost all the way around, whether from newcomers to the story or from people who've read and seen the rest. But we've also got a little bit of TV talk, from "Once Upon a Time" to "Homeland." And Geoff chimes in with another music pick, covering a genre we most definitely don't know very well.
Today’s guest is radio DJ, blogger, and podcaster Dave “The InterDave” Nelson. Originally from Minneapolis/St. Paul, he now lives in Wausau, Wisconsin. You can find him on Twitter as @TheInterDave and on Google+. He runs the Galactic Netcasts podcast network, which is home tothree shows: the Alien Invasion Podcast, the Sci-Fi Film School podcast, and the Time-Traveling Robots in Space podcast. Today he shares his love of the “Prophets of Science Fiction” series on the Science Channel, the “Top Five Podcast,” and the “Life In A Day” documentary project on YouTube. Got your own picks to share? Want to be a guest on Popspotting? Just drop us a line!
A high school reunion invitation prompts us to recall where we were and what we were listening to twenty years ago. This Wildcard Wednesday features five favorite songs each from 1992. That year, NASA's space shuttle Endeavor saw its first flight, Apple released the the Newton PDA, and Disney's "Aladdin" was tops at the box office. Jen's picks include tracks by U2, Sade, and the Black Crowes, and Ryan highlights songs from the Indigo Girls, Sublime, and The Cure.
It's a British period drama that's one of the biggest hits on PBS. But don't let that discourage you from visiting "Downton Abbey." Recommended to us by several listeners, most passionately by Greg Marriotti of PixarTalk, we dove into the first season of this series and devoured every minute in time to catch the U.S. premiere of season two on Sunday. We were surprised at how compelling this super stylish and slightly soapy show turned out to be, following the lives of a noble family and the large staff that serves them.
This fourth installment in the series finds IMF Agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) in a dark place, as he's joined by Benji (Simon Pegg), Jane (Paula Patton), and William (Jeremy Renner). The team must face off against Russian baddie Kurt Hendricks (Michael Nyqvist), without the considerable resources of the Impossible Missions Force. "Ghost Protocol" was directed by Brad Bird, and is his first live-action film. It was produced by J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk, both "LOST" alums. Does this impressive pedigree deliver a worthwhile action spy caper?
The San Francisco Chronicle crowned "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows" as the worst film of 2011. Would Jen have been more likely to agree were it not for her meddling husband? Also on the movie front, a thumbs up for "The Help," up for several Golden Globe awards. This Feedback Friday also brings a few book reviews, from Bill Bryson to Stephanie Meyer. Then, the last word on musicals... for now.
Today’s PopTalk & Trivia guest is Jason, the other half of “The Forgotten Flix Podcast.” (His co-host Joel was our guest last month.) A resident of Jen’s home state of Florida, Jason highlights hometown musician J.J. Grey, the independent thriller flick “Midnight Son,” and “The Tobolowsky Files.” Jason’s day job is as a business trainer, a job that makes surprisingly effective use of his degrees in Anthropology and Primatology. But when at home and out and about, he blogs about his adventures with his family at DadQuest.com. He also writes the “Deep Fried Cheese” column. You can find him on Twitter at @flixsidekick and @dadquest.
Before charging into the new year, we take a look back at the year that was. A "year in review" show is, perhaps, cliche, but 2011 was a good year for pop culture, and most certainly a special year for Popspotting. We recount the best movies and new television shows of 2011 (and touch on the upcoming Golden Globes), as well as share our favorite music, book, and app picks. And we'd really like to hear what you would crown as the "Best of 2011"!