Slate’s Culture Gabfest on Queen of Versailles, Revolution, and Unsophisticated Audiences

Slate's weekly roundtable.
Sept. 26 2012 2:36 PM

The Culture Gabfest: Long Shoots of Goldenrod Edition

Slate's podcast about the documentary Queen of Versailles, the NBC drama Revolution, and the flap over unsophisticated audiences.

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Listen to Culture Gabfest No. 210 with Stephen Metcalf, Dana Stevens, and Julia Turner by clicking the arrow on the audio player below:

And join the lively conversation on the Culturefest Facebook page here:

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On this week’s Culturefest, our critics discuss the documentary Queen of Versailles, director Lauren Greenfield’s portrait of opulent excess and financial collapse, and what happens to a family’s dream of constructing the largest private home in the country when the economy tanks. They then discuss Revolution, the new sci-fi drama from J.J. Abrams and Eric Kripke and ponder why Americans can’t seem to get enough of the post-apocalypse in our entertainment. Finally, the Gabfesters consider TV critic Matt Zoller Seitz’s blog post about distanced or “unsophisticated” viewership, whether there exists a “wrong” way to watch a movie, and how to properly experience and appreciate art of an earlier age.

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

Endorsements:

Dana’s pick: The Tumblr blog speakcelebrity.tumblr.com, which features celebrities reading poetry, including Al Pacino reading Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 150,” Meryl Streep reading “Because I Could Not Stop for Death” by Emily Dickinson, and Benedict Cumberbatch reading Lewis Caroll’s “Jabberwocky.”

Julia’s pick: The YouTube video “Best Line Delivery of All Time,” starring Giancarlo Esposito.

Stephen’s pick: The newly coined term farmeur to describe the yuppie who is convinced of his agrarian bona fides, and Émile Zola’s 1885 masterpiece Germinal.

Outro: “The Palace of Versailles” by Al Stewart

You can email us at culturefest@slate.com.

This podcast was produced by Dan Pashman. Our intern is Sally Tamarkin.

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

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.

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