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Welcome to the Nerdette Book Club! Each month, we read a book and chat about it with a rotating group of panelists. This month’s pick is The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson. It’s an alternate-universe story about hundreds of different Earths slightly different from our own. It’s possible to “traverse” to other planets, but only if the trave…
 
The first week of 2021 was rough. But, as advice columnists Daniel Lavery and Heather Havrilesky tell us, there's still room for optimism. Then we talk to Dr. Y. Joel Wong, a professor at Indiana University, about the very real science behind positive thinking (Yep, a number of studies show that people who keep gratitude journals are mentally and p…
 
You’ve made it through another week in the year 2020. Congratulations! Join Nerdette for a look back at the week in vaccines, virtual holiday parties and Greta’s new favorite ridiculous TV show, The Wilds, alongside TIME Magazine’s Eliana Dockterman and NPR’s Barrie Hardymon. Then we have an amazing conversation about your brain — yes, yours — and …
 
Our December Book Club pick is our first murder mystery! It's Tana French’s latest book, The Searcher. In it, a retired Chicago police officer moves to a small town in Western Ireland for a bit of peace and quiet, only to get drawn back into his old ways when a local boy asks for help solving the mystery of his brother’s disappearance. Today's epis…
 
Happy weekend! Now let Nerdette podcast get you ready for it. First we break down the week in disappearing monoliths, TV reboots and Spotify playlists with WBEZ’s Meha Ahmad and Mariah Woelfel. Then we talk with musician Andrew Bird about his new Christmas album. And finally, we take a walk through confectionary history with reporter Ashlie Stevens…
 
And from you to Nerdette! Despite [insert disaster of your choice], we’re still thankful for a lot of things in 2020. Like baked goods and game shows and the people we can still visit over the internet. We asked you to tell us about the stuff you’re grateful for right now and, obviously, you did not disappoint. Press play to listen. Us? We’re thank…
 
Is this movie a documentary? Maybe a horror film? Welcome back to Nerdette Recaps with Peter Sagal! It’s the podcast where we rewatch movies from 1999 and dissect them like the intense nerds we are. Today, it’s all about Office Space, a workplace comedy from Mike Judge that has firmly … (“I believe you have my stapler”) ... wedged itself … (“Hello …
 
Welcome to the Nerdette Book Club! Each month, we read a book and chat about it with a rotating group of panelists. This month’s pick is The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab. It’s about a girl from the 1700s whose curiosities and ambitions are bigger than the small town she lives in. When she finds a way to break free from the expectat…
 
Say what now? We made it to another weekend! Now let us get you ready for it. First, we talk about the “news” of the week with Hari Kondabolu and W. Kamau Bell, comedians and hosts of the Politically Re-Active podcast. Then we have a conversation you’ve all been waiting for: Emily Willingham tells us about her new book titled Phallacy: Life Lessons…
 
First thing we’re doing after this pandemic? Paintballing in Washington State, of course! Welcome back to Nerdette Recaps with Peter Sagal! It’s the podcast where we rewatch movies from 1999 and dissect them like the intense nerds we are. Today, it’s all about 10 Things I Hate About You, a far more benign reimagining of William Shakespeare’s The Ta…
 
Wilco singer/guitarist Jeff Tweedy has been busy. He has a new solo album out called Love is the King. And his new book How to Write One Song has a lot of advice for aspiring songwriters. But it’s also about a lot more than that. Nerdette host Greta Johnsen spoke with Tweedy from his recording studio in Chicago. What’s your definition of a song? Je…
 
Fair warning: This movie can be really tough to watch. Boys Don’t Cry is a heart-wrenching biopic based on the true story of Brandon Teena, a transgender man who was raped and murdered in Nebraska in 1993. The film stars Hilary Swank, who won an Oscar for her performance, with a stellar supporting performance from Chloë Sevigny and a haunting one f…
 
Would you take a deal with the devil? In The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, a new novel from renowned fantasy author V.E. Schwab, a young woman bargains with her soul to live forever. The catch? She’s cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets. The novel is Nerdette’s November book club pick. Today, we host a spoiler-free chat with the author abo…
 
There’s an election going on! This podcast has absolutely nothing to do with it! Welcome back to Nerdette Recaps with Peter Sagal! It’s the podcast where we rewatch movies from 1999 and dissect them like the intense nerds we are. Today, it’s all about Election, a very dark comedy featuring Reese Witherspoon, Matthew Broderick and about 15 servings …
 
Welcome to the Nerdette Book Club! Each month, we read a book and chat about it with a rotating group of panelists. This month’s pick is Can’t Even: How Millennials Became the Burnout Generation from author Anne Helen Petersen. In Can’t Even, Petersen argues that societal conditions and poor timing primed the millennial generation for burnout. Pete…
 
Today's episode is all about The Blair Witch Project, a 1999 film with a $60,000 budget and three unknown actors that made over $240 million. Listen as Peter, Tricia and Greta break it down, and then join us next week for Election ... just in time for the election. And don’t forget, we want to hear from you! Join the party and send us a voice recor…
 
What is The Matrix? Why, it’s a film that the matrix would make about the matrix, of course! Welcome back to Nerdette Recaps with Peter Sagal! It’s the podcast where we rewatch movies and dissect them like the intense nerds we are. This time around, it’s all about the films of 1999. And today, we’re breaking down The Matrix, a seminal film from the…
 
The millennial generation came into adulthood during an American recession, an era of crushing student loan debt and the rise of temporary workers and independent contractors. Add a global pandemic to that precariousness and you’ve got a perfect recipe for burnout. Today, Greta talks with author Anne Helen Petersen about Can’t Even: How Millennials…
 
Quick! Name six iconic movies that hit theaters in the year 1999. Nothing?! Ok. We'll do it for you: The Matrix The Blair Witch Project Election Boys Don't Cry 10 Things I Hate About You Office Space And the craziest thing is? That's not even the half of it! In honor of that crazy year in movies, Nerdette Recaps with Peter Sagal is back again, feat…
 
You didn’t already know? Nerdette talked with two brand new MacArthur Fellows — also known as MacArthur “geniuses” — about the important work they’re doing and what it’s like to get that phone call. Mary L. Gray is an anthropologist and a media scholar honored for her work investigating how “labor, identity, and human rights are transformed by the …
 
What a wild week! And to celebrate the return of another weekend, we assembled a bunch of fun people to take a look back … in a merry, pop culture kind of way, not a CAPS LOCK newsy way. To talk about the big week for movies, we called up Eliana Dockterman, who writes about movies, pop culture and feminism for Time. Then, to break down the glorious…
 
The seasons are changing but the novel coronavirus is still with us. And that’s left us with a lot of questions about how to safely socialize with friends and family when the weather makes small outdoor gatherings less viable. So we called up Dr. Emily Landon, an epidemiologist and infectious disease specialist at the University of Chicago. (She al…
 
Either Peter really hates the 1991 film Hook or he’s suffering from some serious Peter Pan envy … or maybe both! Welcome to a special bonus episode of Nerdette Recaps with Peter Sagal! his week it’s all about Steven Spielberg’s Peter Pan sequel, starring Dustin Hoffman as the titular captain, Robin Williams as an adult Peter Pan and Julia Roberts a…
 
You know Gillian Flynn as the genre-redefining writer behind Gone Girl, both the 2012 novel and the 2014 movie adaptation starring Rosamund Pike and Ben Affleck. Since the success of Gone Girl, Flynn has written only for the screen, including the 2018 movie Widows and the HBO series Sharp Objects. Out now on Amazon Prime, Utopia is Flynn’s latest w…
 
Welcome to the Nerdette Book Club! Each month, we read a book and chat about it with a rotating group of panelists. This month’s pick is Maaza Mengiste’s historical novel The Shadow King. It’s based on the true story of the Italian invasion of Ethiopia in the mid-1930s. Against Italian Prime Minister Benito Musolinni’s technologically-advanced army…
 
“I’m not woke. I’m aware.” That’s the answer Chicago comedian T. Murph gives when he’s asked about his relationship to the title of Woke, a new series that dropped on Hulu earlier this month. T. Murph plays the role of Clovis, friend and roommate of Keef, the show’s protagonist (played by Lamorne Morris), who tries to avoid controversy in his work …
 
The Bechdel test asks a simple question: Does a work of fiction have two named female characters who talk to each other about something other than a man? Today we talk with Sarah Kozloff, who was a film professor at Vassar College when she learned that The Lord of The Rings movies fail the Bechdel test. That inspired her to write The Nine Realms, a…
 
Six weeks of movie recaps and there still seems to be no sign of intelligent life anywhere. This week it’s all about the 1995 Pixar classic Toy Story, starring Tom Hanks, Tim Allen and all of our collective childhood memories. Listen as Peter, Tricia and Greta recall the moments that made them weep, search for hidden religious analogs and consider …
 
Like it or not these seasons are a changing! And that means right now is a great opportunity to embrace flavors from late summer and early fall, and to make a chocolate zucchini cake! We talk with baker and cookbook author Shauna Sever — all about all the spices you should have, sourdoughs you should start, and pies you should scarf down immediatel…
 
While researching for her novel, author Maaza Mengiste says she came across a New York Times article from 1935 that described a woman leading an army of 2,000 men into victory. She was shocked. Why had she never heard about this female wartime hero? “It struck me,” Mengiste tells Nerdette. “If there’s one, there’s two. If there’s two, there’s five.…
 
The $5 milkshake. Once a shocking, exorbitant example of the scourge of inflation. Now, a hot bargain that shouldn’t be missed! Welcome back to Nerdette Recaps with Peter Sagal! It’s the podcast where we rewatch movies of the ‘90s and dissect them like the intense nerds we are. Episode 5 is all about 1994’s Pulp Fiction, starring John Travolta, Uma…
 
Does Dazed and Confused have a plot? Barely! Does that matter? To some people, yes! This week's recap is all about 1993’s Dazed and Confused, starring young versions of Matthew McConaughey, Parker Posey, Ben Affleck and Anthony Rapp. It’s also an early film from director Richard Linklater, who went on to make critically-acclaimed movies like Before…
 
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