Rank #1: 17. Alec Baldwin: Impersonator-in-Chief
Actor Alec Baldwin has delighted millions of viewers playing Donald Trump on Saturday Night Live, but it wasn't so long ago that he tried to say goodbye to public life entirely. He joins Katie and Brian for a frank discussion about the arc of his career, his personal challenges with tabloid journalism, and the political tensions within his own family. Plus, he dishes on his favorite Jack Donaghy lines from 30 Rock and why no one is more thrilling to work with than Tom Cruise.This episode is brought to you by Dunkin’ Donuts, Hello Fresh (www.hellofresh.com code: COURIC35), and Princess Cruise Lines (www.princess.com/KATIE).
Rank #2: 4. Julia Louis-Dreyfus: Women in the White House
It's been a big season for women in politics - both in fictional worlds and real ones. Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep) talks about playing the fictional president Selina Meyer and Rebecca Traister (All the Single Ladies) digs into the moment and meaning of Hillary Clinton’s presidential nomination. Plus, Katie takes a field trip to Times Square to find out what a woman nominee, and potential president, means to everyday Americans.This episode is sponsored by Close5, The Great Courses, and Stamps.com.
Rank #3: 51. Wonder Woman: Amy Schumer
Amy Schumer made a name— and a career— for herself with her unapologetically raunchy brand of stand-up comedy. But being known as "the sex comic" never phased Amy. "That just seemed like a stepping stone," she says. Katie joins Amy at home to discuss everything that came out of her success in stand-up comedy, including starring roles in movies and on Broadway, her Comedy Central sketch series, and her best-selling memoir. They also discuss the #MeToo movement, body image issues in Hollywood, and the tragedy that sparked Amy's involvement in gun safety activism. Plus, Katie and Amy revisit the dirty prank that drew them closer.
Rank #4: 77. The Palin Interviews, 10 Years Later: Part One
The Palin Interviews, 10 Years Later is a two-part documentary series from the Katie Couric podcast. For this special series, Katie and Brian look back at Katie’s interviews with then vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin and the impact those conversations had on the 2008 election. Plus, they consider the path Palin may have paved for the rise of Donald Trump. In Part One, Katie and Brian go behind the scenes with top officials from the McCain and Obama campaigns and cover Palin’s extraordinary emergence on the national stage: her selection as John McCain’s running mate (which almost didn’t happen) and her electrifying speech at the Republican National Convention. And of course, they examine the interviews heard round the world and consider why they struck such a chord. This episode is sponsored by SweeTango Apples (www.sweetango.com/katie), Bona Floor Cleaners (www.bona.com), Framebridge (www.framebridge.com code: COURIC), California Closets (www.californiaclosets.com/KATIE), and PillPack (www.go.pillpack.com/katie).
Rank #5: 40. Martha Stewart Speaks Her Mind
Martha Stewart has dominated all things domestic for nearly 35 years. But what about the woman behind the empire? Katie and Brian pay a visit to Martha's pristine office for a candid conversation over some apple-cranberry crisp. Martha recalls what it was like growing up in New Jersey as one of six kids, getting her first book deal, serving time in prison and what it was like to work on a TV show with Donald Trump. Plus, she discusses her new cookbook and her collaboration with Snoop Dogg. Nothing is off-limits. It's a good thing. This episode is brought to you by Virtue (www.virtuelabs.com code: KATIE), Babbel (www.babbel.com/katie), ZipRecruiter (www.ziprecruiter.com/COURIC), and Magoosh (www.magoosh.com code: KATIE).
Rank #6: 9. Samantha Bee: Not Holding Back
Samantha Bee (Full Frontal with Samantha Bee) is the only woman in America with her own late-night television show. "Its really liberating," she tells Katie and Brian. "I don't find it scary at all." She discusses the outrage she summons in order to do her job, how her three young kids prevent her from overthinking things, and her dozen years as a correspondent for The Daily Show. Plus, she swears she wasn't a class clown growing up.This episode is brought to you by Casper Mattresses and Audible.
Rank #7: 25. Ina Garten: At Home With the Barefoot Contessa
Ina Garten welcomes Katie and Brian to her home on Easter morning for a lesson on slow-cooked scrambled eggs (with truffles!) and a wide-ranging conversation at her kitchen table. Between bites of breakfast, they discuss Ina's views on feminism, other celebrity chefs, and her unlikely path from White House nuclear energy expert to Food Network star. Plus, an unexpected cameo from Jeffrey, Ina's husband of 48 years. This episode is brought to you by Credo Mobile (www.credomobile.com/katiecouric), Crane & Canopy, and Varidesk (www.varidesk.com/podcast).
Rank #8: 26. Sheryl Sandberg: Living Option B
After her husband died suddenly from a cardiac arrhythmia, Facebook's COO Sheryl Sandberg (Lean In) thought she would never experience true joy again. Nearly two years later, she is out with a new book, Option B, that delves into how she proved herself wrong— and how others can build resilience in the face of trauma, too. Sandberg wrote Option B with her friend Adam Grant, an organizational psychologist and Wharton professor. They both join Katie onstage at 92Y (92Y.org) in Manhattan to discuss insights from the book, including how to support grieving children, dating after loss, and the "three P's" that can hinder recovery. This episode is brought to you by Texture (www.texture.com/KATIE) and Audible (www.audible.com/couric).
Rank #9: 44. Marie Kondo in Katie's Closet
Marie Kondo brings her world-renowned tidying expertise to Katie's own closet, where—let’s just say—not everything is “sparking joy.” They discuss Marie’s early (and sometimes overzealous) forays into organizing and why the "KonMari Method" for cleaning up has turned into a global phenomenon. Plus, Marie explains how her young daughters have changed her approach to tidying and divulges the unnecessary object in her home that she refuses to give away. For bonus footage of Marie helping Katie confront her packed closet, head to Architectural Digest: bit.ly/KondoCouric
Rank #10: 72. Preet Bharara Explains It All
Preet Bharara, the former US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, joins Katie and Brian to help us make sense of the investigations swirling around President Trump. But first, Preet details the whirlwind experience of being courted and then fired by Trump. He also explains why he's decided not to run for public office— for now.
Rank #11: 34. Kerry Sulkowicz: Is the President Mentally Fit?
Katie and guest host John Molner (aka Katie's husband) welcome Dr. Kerry Sulkowicz for a discussion about the psychology of leadership and his views on President Trump's mental health. They also talk about why many mental health professionals won't publicly comment on the psyche of public figures. Plus, Dr. Sulkowicz explains his unexpected path from practicing psychiatry and psychoanalysis to advising CEOs and corporate boards.
Rank #12: 75. Jonathan Van Ness is Busy Being Fabulous
Jonathan Van Ness, better known to his fans as JVN, is a beloved member of the "Fab Five" cast of Netflix's hit show Queer Eye. He joins Katie and Brian for a lively discussion about everything from standing out as a gay kid growing up in Quincy, Illinois to what it was like filming for Queer Eye in rural, conservative areas of Georgia. Plus, JVN recalls his epic 6th grade talent show performance. This episode is sponsored by California Closets (www.californiaclosets.com/Katie), Bona Floor Cleaners (www.bona.com), Everlane (www.everlane.com/KATIE), Thrive Market (www.thrivemarket.com/katiecouric), and PillPack (go.pillpack.com/KATIE).
Rank #13: 48. Mika Brzezinksi and Joe Scarborough: Mika and Joe Set the Record Straight
Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski share a morning TV news show— and a life. For over a decade, they've co-hosted Morning Joe on MSNBC, along with Willie Geist. Soon they'll take on new titles: husband and wife. Katie and Brian head to NBC Studios in New York to talk with Mika and Joe about the criticism they've faced for their coverage of Donald Trump, the evolution of the GOP, and why they think the 25th Amendment should be invoked. Plus, their account of New Year’s at Mar-a-Lago.
Rank #14: 60. Mr. Jones Goes to Washington
In December, Doug Jones became the first Democrat to win a Senate seat in ruby-red Alabama in 25 years. This week, Katie and Brian make their way to Washington, D.C. for an extended interview with Senator Jones in his new office. They talk about the ongoing dysfunction in the Senate, Jones' upset victory over his embattled Republican opponent Roy Moore, and they dig into a grab-bag of current events. Plus, they delve into Jones' life story, from his teen years in Alabama's newly-integrated public schools to his role in prosecuting two KKK members for a 1963 church bombing that killed four African American girls.
Rank #15: 78. The Palin Interviews, 10 Years Later: Part Two
In the second and final chapter of their documentary series, Katie and Brian explore what happened after the Palin interviews aired: from the struggles of the McCain campaign to Sarah Palin’s decision to start “going rogue.” Plus, they explore how Palin helped usher in a new brand of American politics— and President Donald Trump. This episode is sponsored by California Closets (www.californiaclosets.com/Katie), SweeTango Apples (www.SweeTango.com/katie), ZipRecruiter (www.ziprecruiter.com/COURIC), and Warby Parker (www.warbyparker.com/katie).
Rank #16: 59. The Muslim Next Door
Half of Americans say they have never met a Muslim. What’s it like to be Muslim in America today? Katie and Brian take to the stage at South by Southwest for a live podcast taping with guests Wajahat Ali, a New York Times contributing op-ed writer, and Mona Haydar, a Syrian-American rapper and activist. They have a frank conversation about the joys and pressures of being American Muslims, misconceptions about Islam, and how US media coverage plays into all of the above. Plus, they dig into the controversy surrounding Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.
Rank #17: 64. Julianna Margulies on #MeToo, Trump, and “Dietland”
Julianna Margulies has been lighting up the small screen for over two decades, with standout roles on TV shows like ER and The Good Wife. She joins Katie and Brian to discuss everything from the big impact George Clooney had on her career to what she loved about playing Alicia Florrick. She also explains what makes her latest character on AMC's Dietland such a delicious role. Plus, Julianna opens up about her own experiences with harassment as a young actress.
Rank #18: 73. Alan Alda and Tina Fey Take Over the Pod
Katie and Brian call in a favor (literally) to beloved actor Alan Alda, who agrees to lend them an episode of his new podcast, Clear+Vivid. They chat about the perks of podcasting and then throw to a conversation Alan had with Tina Fey in front of a live audience. Plus, Tina drops by the studio to answer seven questions about herself.
Rank #19: 71. Adam Grant’s Best Advice
Organizational psychologist and bestselling author Adam Grant joins Katie and Brian for a wide-ranging discussion about work. "My job is to fix other people's jobs," Adam explains. They delve into what makes a great leader, the difference between workplace givers and takers, and why Adam typically recommends against group brainstorms. Plus, Adam dishes on his experience sitting in on the writers' room at The Daily Show.
Rank #20: 3. Bob Costas: Voice of the Olympics
Bob Costas is THE voice of the Olympics — the legendary broadcaster has hosted more than a dozen of the games. Today he talks with Katie and Brian about how he prepares to preside over the Olympics, and how a childhood passion for sports turned into a love of sportscasting. He also explains conflicted feelings over Caitlyn Jenner’s 2015 Arthur Ashe award, and weighs in on our current political climate. Plus, we hear some of your favorite Olympics memories.This episode is sponsored by Material Wrld, Stamps.com, and Audible.