Best Televisioncriticism podcasts we could find (Updated June 2019)
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Three film school grads analyze the Hades out of Xena: Warrior Princess. The power, the passion, the podcast!
 
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This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, Son of Borias, what have you done? Vera, Katie, and Livy are horsing around with 6x17 “Last of the Centaurs.” We discuss the glorious, nostalgic returns of Marton Csokas and Danielle Cormack, Xena having surrogate sons all over the place, the episode’s parallels to ‘Last of the Mohicans’ and its use of Holoca ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, life finds a way! Vera, Katie, and Livy are working some weird science with 6x16 “Send in the Clones,” a modern-day set clip show that directly takes on fan culture. We debate whether this was a good idea (spoiler alert: it was not!), discuss other depictions of fans in movies and TV (ilu Galaxy Quest), and p ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, war is hell! Vera, Katie, and Livy go once more into the breach with 6x15 “To Helicon and Back,” the show’s biggest battle epic, and the grim conclusion to the Amazons’ storyline. We discuss the many references to WWII films including Saving Private Ryan, They Were Expendable, The Longest Day, Patton, and… Ja ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, fables have never been sexier! Vera, Katie, and Livy are reckoning with 6x14 “Path of Vengeance,” an episode that goes back to the show’s roots with a plot full of Amazon justice and juicy moral dilemmas. We discuss Eve’s final appearance on Xena and how her character arc differs from her mother’s, Xena’s hyp ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST: You! Are! There! Vera, Katie, and Livy investigate 6x13 “You Are There,” a comedy experiment that stretches the show’s tonal boundaries. We discuss the forerunners of the fourth wall-breaking reporter, including X-Cops, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and of course the original You Are There, we debate wheth ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, welcome to our bacchanalia -- try the grapes! Vera, Katie, and Livy enjoy some late Roman decadence with 6x12 “The God You Know,” a messy rollercoaster of giddy highs and problematic lows. We discuss Alexis Arquette’s carefully modulated performance as Caligula, Aphrodite down and out in Rome, the parallels b ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, the hunt is on! Vera, Katie, and Livy are stalking 6x11 “Dangerous Prey,” Renée O’Connor’s second outing as a director. We discuss the strategies Renée used to beef up this episode’s weak script, the terribly-named Prince Chesnick Bloodicarr Morloch who was just the worst on screen and off, and the many bette ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, *cue banjo*. Vera, Katie, and Livy are making hay with 6x10 “Old Ares Had a Farm,” one of the show’s final, and most lovable, comedies. We discuss its use of nostalgia, not just in the subplot about Xena’s childhood, but also in its hiring of director Charles Siebert, who directed many Xena eps in the first t ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, go on and kiss the girl! Vera, Katie, and Livy are living a fairy tale with 6x09 “Return of the Valkyrie,” the conclusion to the show’s ambitious Rheingold trilogy. We discuss the complicated question of what aspects of Xena’s essence and values were removed by the Ring, Wealthea’s intriguing similarities to ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, is this burning an eternal flame? Vera, Katie, and Livy are tracking more monsters in 6x08 “The Ring,” the second installment of the show’s Wagnerian mashup. We discuss how this ep compares to the middle chapters of our favorite movie trilogies, what special qualities director Rick Jacobson brings to this mat ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we’re Ringing in the new year with 6x07 “The Rheingold,” the first installment of the show’s most ambitious serialization experiment yet, a three-parter! Vera, Katie, and Livy discuss the story’s roots in Wagner, Norse sagas, and Beowulf - plus Tolkien, probably; director John Fawcett’s experience with creatu ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, you’re looking good enough to eat! Vera, Katie, and Livy are hungering for some flesh with 6x06 “The Abyss,” which features three fantastic cave scenes surrounded by...cannibals and Virgil? We discuss the highs and lows: the shippiest shippiness to ever ship; the final, very satisfying return of the Rift; the ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we’ve got sand up the wazoo! Vera, Katie, and Livy discover strange beauty in the desert with 6x05 “Legacy.” We discuss this episode’s moral questioning as it returns to the wellspring of the show’s most potent ideas: the consequences of violence, the greater good vs. individual desire, justice vs. redemption ...…
 
We’ll take “Let’s Fill Up the Problematic Jar for $1000,” Alex! This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, Vera, Katie, and Livy analyze 6x04 “Who’s Gurkhan?,” one of the show’s bloodiest outings thus far and the phenomenal kick-off to a Gabrielle-centric trilogy of eps that center around her ever-evolving relationship with violence. (And VENGEANCE! A ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we live to sin! Vera, Katie, and Livy wrangle with the infernal 6x03 “Heart of Darkness.” We discuss our problems with this episode, its wonky take on Xena’s character, its reductive moral determinism, and the total lack of chemistry between Xena and her new beau, Lucifer a.k.a. Lucy (?) a.k.a. Big L (???). R ...…
 
Silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST! This week, Vera, Katie, and Livy ain’t afraid of no ghost in 6x02 “The Haunting of Amphipolis,” the show’s Halloweeniest Halloween episode. We discuss its many horror homages including Evil Dead, The Exorcist, Poltergeist, and The Haunting of Hill House; the effective use ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we’re baaaaaaack! Vera, Katie, and Livy are kicking off Season Six with 6x01 “Coming Home.” We discuss the show’s weird decision to change its credit sequence so late in the game, screenwriter and fan-turned-pro Melissa Good and the fandom phenomenon of BNFs, Tsianina Joelson (aka Darcy from Bring It On) kick ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, it’s question time again! Vera, Katie, and Livy weigh in on the Xena reboot, favorite OTPs, Gabrielle’s hair, and so much more in Hermes Mailbag 4 (Part 2) – Starring Vera Farmiga as Joxer! Join us as we answer such questions as ‘What color lightsaber would Xena have?’ and ‘At what point in the series did Xen ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we’ve got mail! Vera, Katie, and Livy are taking your questions in Part One of our supersized Hermes Mailbag. This week, we’re only answering questions directly to related to Season 5, so get ready as we discuss our favorite and least favorite episodes, Kurtzman and Orci’s alternate vision for the show includ ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, Hope springs eternal! Vera, Katie, and Livy have reached the season finale, 5x22 “Motherhood,” which fulfills our Hopes by ending the often-lackluster Season 5 with a bang—actually many, many bangs. We discuss Athena as a sympathetic figure doing her best while everyone around her screws up; the tremendous pa ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we have seen the light! Vera, Katie, and Livy experience a revelation with 5x21 “Eve,” the emotional continuation of Season 5’s final story arc. We discuss director Mark Beesley’s masterful use of camera movement; the dense tangle of thematic callbacks to “Callisto,” “Return of Callisto,” “Fallen Angel,” and ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, all roads lead to drama! Vera, Katie, and Livy continue our journey through the final arc of Season 5 with 5x20 “Livia.” The show makes a time jump and (surprise!) the future ain’t great, as we’re reintroduced to Eve, now enfant terrible Livia, and her two creepy boyfriends. We rank the many amazing zoom-ins ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, it’s a trap! Vera, Katie, and Livy take on 5x19 “Looking Death in the Eye,” the tricky kickoff of the four-episode arc that ends the season. We discuss this episode’s long con and whether it works on second viewing, the framing story and its use of Old Man Joxer’s point-of-view, how authentic are the emotions ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, walk like an Egyptian! Vera, Katie, and Livy are cruising the Nile with 5x18 “Antony & Cleopatra,” a sultry and extravagant romance unafraid to show Xena and Gabrielle in a morally ambiguous light. We discuss director Michael Hurst’s use of close-ups and slow motion to visually tell a story of manipulation, i ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we were on a break!!! Vera, Katie, and Livy find domestic bliss with 5x17 “Kindred Spirits,” a mixed bag of Joxer nonsense and Xena/Gabs amazingness. We discuss the return of our favorite tea-spiller Josh Becker and his insights into this episode’s eleventh-hour overhaul, Xena and Gabrielle renovate their dre ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we’re going back in time, all the way back to 1997 when Rob Tapert thought he could sell the world on ‘Selma Blair goes to Prehistoric Times to Teach the Amazons How to Dance!’ Vera, Katie, and Livy are listening to their ancestors with 5x16 “Lifeblood,” a clip show cobbled together with footage from Renaissa ...…
 
Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST!!! This week, Vera, Katie, and Livy break out their bikinis and put little umbrellas in their Tiki drinks for 5x15 “Married with Fishsticks,” which according to some fans is the worst Xena episode ever made, but according to us is a work of unrivaled genius. Get ready for a Party Pod ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, it’s a battle on the home front! Vera, Katie, and Livy return to where it all began with 5x14 “Amphipolis Under Siege,” a rousing episode that marks the beginning of the show’s return to form. We discuss comeback kid R.J. Stewart’s strategic use of Xena continuity to remind the audience why they fell in love ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, Chris Manheim is at it again! Vera, Katie, and Livy are getting hot and heavy with 5x13 “Eternal Bonds,” a.k.a. A Very Hetero Episode that is nonetheless very attuned to the characters and kicks off the quality upswing as we enter the back half of Season 5. We discuss the show’s handling of Baby Eve, poopy di ...…
 
Oh baby, it’s time for another episode of XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST! Vera, Katie, and Livy have a special delivery with 5x12 “God Fearing Child,” and ARGH get out of the way, Hercules!! We discuss this episode’s mothers and fathers, as Xena reckons with the specter of Solon just as she’s about to give birth, and Hercules reckons with his daddy issu ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, live free or pie hard! Vera, Katie, and Livy are horsing around with 5x11 “Punch Lines,” a clip show celebration of Xena’s comedies. We discuss how this episode fits into the tradition of Gabrielle-focused clip shows, the cinematic history of pie fights, getting laughs out of Xena’s pregnancy, the very proble ...…
 
Welcome, all you baddest mama jammers, to another episode of XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST! Vera, Katie, and Livy are rocking out to 5x10 “Lyre, Lyre, Hearts on Fire,” the show’s second, way-more-mediocre musical episode. Season FIVE! *shakes fist* We discuss our fave jukebox musicals (of which this is not one!), the thematic cohesion (or lack thereof! ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, Vera, Katie, and Livy are in the soup with 5x08 “Little Problems” and 5x09 “Seeds of Faith.” We discuss what these two episodes have in common: reflective surfaces conveniently placed everywhere you need them! We also discuss how these episodes differ: one is a fairly serious meditation on belief and sacrific ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, you spin me right round baby right round! Vera, Katie, and Livy put up a force field to protect themselves from 5x07 “Back in the Bottle,” the staggeringly lazy, tone deaf conclusion of the Chin two-parter. And you thought “Purity” was bad! We discuss the terrible script, so busted that the writers tried to s ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST -- ugh, next slide! Vera, Katie, and Livy take on 5x06 “Purity,” the first half of the show’s misguided return to Chin. We discuss the shallow characterizations of new characters Pao Ssu and K’ao Hsin, Joxer’s blatant racism, and the writers’ infuriating retcon of “The Debt” -- seriously, since when has Lao Ma ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, welcome to the doghouse! Vera, Katie, and Livy are proud to present 5x05 “Them Bones, Them Bones” recorded LIVE AT XENITE RETREAT 2018! First we give you the deets on our pre-Retreat brush with celebrity and we introduce our special guest for the live show. Then we break down this episode’s experimental visua ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, Vera, Katie, and Livy clip on their deputy’s badges and prepare for a showdown with 5x04 “Animal Attraction.” We discuss the show’s baffling decision to reveal Xena’s pregnancy in a rom-com western, pregnancy coat homages, 90’s lady gunslingers, and what ‘race you to Greece’ really means. But before we break ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, may the odds be ever in your favor! Vera, Katie, and Livy get their Hunger Games on with 5x03 “Succession,” a high-concept, small-scale gem and Steve Sears’s final credited contribution to the series. We discuss the episode’s intriguing triangulation between Xena, Gabs, and Ares, the tension that Gabrielle’s ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, our prayers are answered! Vera, Katie, and Livy take a spin with 5x02 “Chakram,” an episode with an inspired premise and a less-than-inspiring execution. We discuss its disappointingly reductive take on Xena’s morality and identity, the sketched-in origin story for Xena’s iconic weapon, and the shifting power ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, oh no, we’re going to hellllllll! Vera, Katie, and Livy take flight in 5x01 “Fallen Angel,” the spectacular season premiere and the most technically audacious Xena episode yet. We discuss the then-cutting edge digital effects, the religious art that influenced the look of heaven and hell, and the importance o ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, queer fans deserve better! Before Vera, Katie, and Livy embark on S5, we’re talking about Queerbaiting (and Why Xena Isn’t), the topic chosen by patrons in our Patreon poll. From Supernatural to Supergirl, Rizzoli & Isles to Sherlock, Once Upon A Time to The 100, we examine how creators sour their relationshi ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we’ve got mail! Vera, Katie, and Livy (along with special guests, Borias and Satrina!) celebrate the end of Season 4 by answering the questions you sent to our ultra-chic Hermes Mailbag! Discussions include: whether we’d have been satisfied with “Ides of March” as the series finale, the importance of Gabriell ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, become your breath, and on the count of ten, think yourself back to Ancient Greece! Vera, Katie, and Livy clarify their remembrances of 4x22 “Déjà Vu All Over Again,” the inexplicable Season 4 finale and Renée O’Connor’s directorial debut. We discuss why this clip show/bottle episode maybe wasn’t the best ass ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, we choose the Way of Friendship. Vera, Katie, and Livy fulfill their destinies in (beware!) 4x21 “The Ides of March,” the sorta season finale, the culmination of several major long-running arcs, and a perfect expression of the ecstatic emotionalism Xena is capable of. We discuss why Callisto is so well-suited ...…
 
In our village, every Monday we listen to a new episode of XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST! Vera, Katie, and Livy play for keeps with 4x20 “Endgame,” where shit gets real and major characters who’ve been part of the show for YEARS get killed...in the teaser!? We discuss how they done Ephiny dirty, the final Brutus and his sexual chemistry with Gabrielle ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, get your aloe vera ready because the Queen of Sick Burns is back! Vera, Katie, and Livy go up against Najara again in 4x18 “The Convert,” discussing her Greatest Hits and whether her characterization in this episode is consistent with the woman we met in “Crusader,” plus actual character development for Joxer ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, all the world’s a stage! Vera, Katie, and Livy go to the theater in 4x17 “The Play’s the Thing,” the show’s most meta episode yet. The writers waste no time in sending up the just-finished India arc and the still-underway pacifism arc, while also making light of every criticism ever made of Xena; from its ski ...…
 
Watch out, because this week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST we are armed and dangerous! Vera, Katie, and Livy have found 4x16 “The Way,” the final episode of the India arc, and it is SOMETHING ELSE. We discuss the backlash that led to this ep’s temporary removal from syndication, and the cultural identity issues and prejudices on both sides of the de ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, karma’s a bitch! Vera, Katie, and Livy move on to the second episode of the India arc, 4x15 “Between the Lines,” and good mother, we’re afraid we don’t understand a lot of this. So many questions, like how does the mendhi work? Like really, how does it work? What happens to Arminestra and Shakti’s consciousne ...…
 
This week on XENA: WARRIOR PODCAST, the power of Eli compels you! Vera, Katie, and Livy take a passage to India in 4x14 “Devi,” the lushly produced first stop on Xena and Gabrielle’s tour of the subcontinent. Ready the Problematic Jar because we kick it off with a whole montage of Indian stereotypes as Xena and Gabs do their best impressions of ...…
 
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