Top 10 Podcasts from 2017

It almost feels like every day someone tells me that they want to start listening to podcasts, and since it’s become a regular medium, you can find podcasts about literally anything.  I’ve listened to podcasts about everything from tech to crying.  There really is a podcast for everyone, whether you need information, a laugh, or an emotional reaction.  Here are some of the best new podcasts and veterans that have kept up the good work:

 

  1. Swipe Out

Alix McAlpine’s podcast is simple enough on the surface, and it’s certainly not the first dating podcast.  The premise is Alix goes on first dates, then discusses them with her friend, while creating a list of qualities she’d like her ideal partner to have.  Occasionally, it’s funny, but McAlpine is doing more than just gossiping about her dates.  She’s really exploring what it’s like navigating the dating world, as a millennial, with dating apps, and as a young adult.  It’s a mostly transparent look into the dating world, and it provides so much insight to those single among us.

Standout episode: Connor/Slim Thicc Continue reading

Another One Bites the Dust: Letting Charles Manson’s Celebrity Die

Despite being the cause of at least five deaths, Charlie Manson is considered to be one of the most popular killers in culture today. A part of me desperately wishes that serial killer popularity wasn’t a thing, but here we are in 2017 with fan clubs for convicted serial killers, rapists and cult leaders, or men like Manson, who happen to be all three.  In what is only going to be sudden spike in Manson popularity, I think people forget that this was exactly what Manson wanted from the beginning.  The whole world to look at him as someone special and as we continue to feed into the criminal turned celebrity, I think it’s important to take a moment and reflect on a society that worships people like him. Continue reading

Charles Manson-Lie (The Love and Terror Cult)

The human fascination with death and murder takes us all down strange rabbit holes.  It’s hard for some people to resist watching Law & Order, some of us have libraries with Helter Skelter or Zodiac, and some of us spend most of our work day listening to murder podcasts.  With a demographic that can sometimes skew down the darker path of life, it’s not difficult to see an audience for Charles Manson’s Lie album.  Manson’s relationship with music is one of the largest parts of his legacy that will surely be discussed for years to come. Continue reading

PWR BTTM’s Ben Hopkins Accused of Sexual Assault

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Ben Hopkins of queer-punk duo PWR BTTM has recently come under fire following accusations of sexual assault.  Following the accusations, the band released a statement, a number of shows have been dropped, Salty Artist Management have dropped them, touring members and support have dropped off their upcoming tour, and a woman came forward in an anonymous interview as a victim of Hopkins.  The band’s sophomore album Pageant was released today.

National Sexual Assault Hotline – (800) 656-4673
The Trevor Project – (866) 488-7386
LGBT National Help Center – (888) 843-4564
National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs – (212) 714-1141

Casting JonBenet: The Advantages of Bias

Casting JonBenet (Dir. Kitty Green), the highly anticipated meta-documentary released as a Netflix-exclusive film about the 1996 murder of 6-year-old JonBenet Ramsey was met with mixed reactions- mostly because the idea of making a film about the actual brutal murder of an actual child didn’t sit well with many people. 1996 wasn’t that long ago. Is it exploitative? Probably. But by that logic, every film about or based on a real-life tragedy is exploitative. I am willing to defend this film’s existence despite its tendency to insert some black humor, as it doesn’t set out to minimize the seriousness of the crime. Unlike other crime documentaries, it is less focused on solving the mystery at hand and more focused on reactions to what we know about the murder and the inevitable biases that come with it. Continue reading

The Return of Lasagna Cat

“Sex Survey Results, the Pipe Strip and the Return of Lasagna Cat”

Jon Arbuckle, Zero

via KnowYourMeme

Despite his status as a cultural icon for the past forty years, Garfield hasn’t contributed much to the artistic world at large- save for some “I hate Mondays” coffee mugs and the memes your aunt shares on Facebook. And while this orange cat has never truly gone away, he isn’t often discussed. Garfield has existed as background noise for the past several decades as a three-panel comic strip, the occasional cartoon, and a handful of kids’ movies that nobody saw. Everybody knows who Garfield is but few have dedicated as much time analyzing his oeuvre as Fatal Farm’s Zach Johnson and Jeffrey Max. Continue reading

Get Out (Dir. Jordan Peele)

Get out

Jordan Peele’s Get Out would not have been green-lit in any year but this one. Had someone described the premise of this film to me a few years ago, I would not have believed them- that not only does this film exist, but that it is a tremendous hit both critically and commercially. And it’s a blessing, really, because if Get Out had been released two years ago it might have been more polarizing if it had even been released at all. The fact that a film with such a supposedly controversial premise has done so well is a testament both to how good this movie is and, very likely, due to the current political climate. It’s a daunting task to create a thought-provoking and genuinely scary film that can include humor sparingly and with purpose, but Jordan Peele has pulled it off.

Get Out is not a “horror comedy”. It is a horror film with moments of comic relief to keep the audience grounded. The humor in this film will come from one of two sources: the uncomfortable familiarity of upper middle class white culture, or Lil Rel Howery as audience surrogate Rod Williams. Rod’s job is to act as the voice of reason most horror movies are missing. See this movie in theatres while you can, because part of the experience is developing this camaraderie with the other viewers through Rod. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a movie that warranted applause at three separate scenes.  

SPOILERS BELOW

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Place Your Bets: Oscars 2017

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I hate the Oscars; I know that they are entirely meaningless and serve little purpose other than to reward those who gave the most money to the Academy. I know that the same types of films are nominated every year, as they follow the same focus group-tested algorithm and were factory-built for award season. And I know that it is a tacky ceremony that spends most of its time congratulating itself and the many white people who didn’t do much to deserve it. But I watch it every year. I love complaining to no one when my favorites don’t win, I love the ridiculous over-polished musical performances and I love placing my bets. So here they are.

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Place Your Bets: The 2017 Grammy Awards

46th Annual Grammy Awards - Pressroom

To me, The Grammys are the Super Bowl.  I always want to gamble on it.  I usually know what’s going to happen.  I’m glued to the TV for hours, and I get drunk while doing it.  Unlike the Super Bowl though, the person who wins is either met with indifference or excitement, rarely anger.  This year, BurgerADay are laying out the pics for who will win versus who should win.  Check out our picks, and either way, just remember it’s much more important than the Patriots and Falcons.  No one’s deflating these balls.

 

Album Of The Year:

25 — Adele

Lemonade — Beyoncé

Purpose — Justin Bieber

Views — Drake

A Sailor’s Guide To Earth — Sturgill Simpson

Should Win: Lemonade-Beyoncé

I may have been late to the party for a long time, but at the tail end of 2016, I listened to Lemonade, and it’s pretty damn great.  Beyoncé is completely worthy of all the praise she’s gotten for this album.  As most of the best albums of the year, Bey mixed the political with the personal, and the record can transition from an emotional gut-punch like on “Pray You Catch Me” or “Don’t Hurt Yourself” to a genuinely fun as hell hype song like “Formation.”  There may be a little protest to the politicization of Beyoncé, but as someone who’s never been on board with her as a simple pop-artist, she’s certainly left a great impression this year.

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