Listen to Culture Gabfest No. 247 with Stephen Metcalf, June Thomas, and Nina Shen Rastogi with the audio player below.
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On this week’s episode, our critics look at HBO’s hit epic fantasy TV series Game of Thrones as it reaches near Sopranos-level popularity. Then, the Gabfest crew discusses director Joss Whedon’s new loose, naturalistic, Santa Monica-based film adaptation of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing. Finally, the gabbers take on the now-ubiquitous trend of smartphone self-portraiture, the “selfie”—innocuous social-media phenomenon, or 21st-century narcissism gone wild?
Here are links to some of the things we discussed this week:
- HBO’s Game of Thrones.
- George R.R. Martin’s series of fantasy novels, A Song of Ice and Fire.
- Nine Shen Rastogi on the infamous “Red Wedding,” for New York’s Vulture.
- HBO’s The Sopranos and Boardwalk Empire.
- Dana Stevens reviews Much Ado About Nothing, for Slate.
- A.O. Scott on the film, for the New York Times.
- Whedon’s beloved TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
- Whedon’s recent blockbuster The Avengers.
- Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado About Nothing.
- Ethan Hawke in Hamlet, and Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet.
- The TV series Franklin and Bash.
- Kate Losse on selfies, for The New Yorker.
- Bill Davidow on Internet narcissism, for the Atlantic.
- The Culture of Narcissism, by Christopher Lasch.
- The infamous “duck face” selfie expression.
June: The BBC’s new atmospheric five-part drama The Fall, starring Gillian Anderson, which is now available on Netflix.
Stephen: The song “Sex Tourists,” by the band French Kicks. And, of course, the perfect garden fertilizer: alpaca poop.
Outro: “Sex Tourists,” by French Kicks.
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This podcast was produced by Chris Wade. Our intern is Sam McDougle.