"The Descendants," Laboratory Mice, and Thanksgiving Stuffing on the Culture Gabfest

Slate's weekly roundtable.
Nov. 23 2011 1:03 PM

The Culture Gabfest, “May Your Descendants Be Stuffed With Naked Mole Rats” Edition

Listen to Slate's show about The Descendants, laboratory mice, and the ultimate Thanksgiving stuffing.


The Culture Gabfest is doing a live show in New York on Tuesday, Dec. 6 at City Winery. Doors open at 6 p.m., show starts at 8 p.m. Listeners can purchase tickets here. Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 the day of the show.

Listen to Culture Gabfest No. 166 with Stephen Metcalf, Dana Stevens, and Julia Turner by clicking the arrow on the audio player below or opening this player in another tab:

Don't miss a single episode of the Culture Gabfest. Subscribe to the free Culturefest podcast in iTunes or directly with our RSS feed. You can also download this week's episode here. And join the lively conversation on the Culturefest Facebook here:

In this week's Culture Gabfest, our critics Stephen Metcalf, Dana Stevens, and Julia Turner debate the merits of Alexander Payne’s new movie The Descendants. Next, Daniel Engber joins the podcast to discuss his recent Slate series on our overreliance on laboratory mice. For their final segment, the Gabfesters welcome Slate’s Laura Anderson to digest the subtleties of Thanksgiving stuffing.

Here are some links to the things we discussed this week:

Dana’s Slate review of The Descendants.
The New York Times’ A.O. Scott on The Descendants.
The New York Times’ Frank Bruni on The Descendants director Alexander Payne.
An interview with The Descendants star Judy Greer.
The Descendants, a novel by Kaui Hart Hemmings. 
Daniel Engber’s Slate series on laboratory mice: Part I. Part IIPart III.
NPR on Daniel Engber’s Slate series.
Scientists engineer supermice.
Errol Morris’ Fast, Cheap, and Out of Control (with naked mole rats in action).
Bill Nye introduces us to naked mole rats.
Laura Anderson’s Slate article on the joys of cornbread stuffing.
Wolfgang Puck’s Brussels sprouts recipe.
Brussels sprouts with bacon and figs, in the New York Times.
Matthew Yglesias on why the price of turkey has been rising, at Slate.
Slate’s Thanksgiving beverage selections.
How to enjoy Thanksgiving leftovers, at Slate.

The Culture Gabfest weekly endorsements:

Dana’s pick: Dialogue on the Awl about Twilight: Breaking Dawn, Part 1, and the world’s most amazing octopus-out-of-water clip.
Julia’s pick: David Chang’s ramen noodle cacio e pepe on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.
Laura’s pick: Kurt Vile’s “The Creature” on the album So Outta Reach.
Steve’s pick: David Foster Wallace’s essay “Tennis, Trigonometry, Tornadoes,” and David Bromwich’s New York Review of Books critique of Niall Ferguson.

Outro: The Smith's "Girlfriend in a Coma."

You can email us at culturefest@slate.com.

This podcast was produced by Jesse Baker. Our intern is Matt Sigl.

Follow us on the new Culturefest Twitter feed. And please Like the Culture Gabfest on Facebook.

L.V. Anderson is a Slate assistant editor. She edits Slate's food and drink sections and writes Brow Beat's recipe column, You're Doing It Wrong. 

Daniel Engber is a columnist for Slate

Stephen Metcalf is Slate's critic at large. He is working on a book about the 1980s.

Dana Stevens is Slate's movie critic.

Julia Turner is the editor in chief of Slate and a regular on Slate's Culture Gabfest podcast.



Don’t Worry, Obama Isn’t Sending U.S. Troops to Fight ISIS

But the next president might. 

The Extraordinary Amicus Brief That Attempts to Explain the Wu-Tang Clan to the Supreme Court Justices

Amazon Is Officially a Gadget Company. Here Are Its Six New Devices.

The Human Need to Find Connections in Everything

It’s the source of creativity and delusions. It can harm us more than it helps us.

How Much Should You Loathe NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell?

Here are the facts.

Altered State

The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender

What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?

Surprise! The Women Hired to Fix the NFL Think the NFL Is Just Great.

You Shouldn’t Spank Anyone but Your Consensual Sex Partner

Sept. 17 2014 5:10 PM The Most Awkward Scenario in Which a Man Can Hold a Door for a Woman
  News & Politics
Altered State
Sept. 17 2014 11:51 PM The Plight of the Pre-Legalization Marijuana Offender What should happen to weed users and dealers busted before the stuff was legal?
Business Insider
Sept. 17 2014 1:36 PM Nate Silver Versus Princeton Professor: Who Has the Right Models?
Sept. 17 2014 6:53 PM LGBTQ Luminaries Honored With MacArthur “Genius” Fellowships
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 17 2014 6:14 PM Today in Gender Gaps: Biking
  Slate Plus
Slate Fare
Sept. 17 2014 9:37 AM Is Slate Too Liberal?  A members-only open thread.
Brow Beat
Sept. 17 2014 8:25 PM A New Song and Music Video From Angel Olsen, Indie’s Next Big Thing
Future Tense
Sept. 17 2014 9:00 PM Amazon Is Now a Gadget Company
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Sept. 17 2014 11:48 PM Spanking Is Great for Sex Which is why it’s grotesque for parenting.
Sports Nut
Sept. 17 2014 3:51 PM NFL Jerk Watch: Roger Goodell How much should you loathe the pro football commissioner?