Rank #1: Our 15 Favorite Things Of 2018
It's the end of the year, and that makes it the perfect time to talk about the things we loved the most in 2018. From Black Panther, to Crazy Rich Asians, to the viral moments you might have missed, we are rounding up our fifteen favorites of the year. So get ready for a whole lot of recommending.
Rank #2: Stranger Things and Weddings
Host Linda Holmes, NPR Music's Stephen Thompson, Librarian Margaret Willison, and Producer Emeritus Mike Katzif chat about the new Netflix series Stranger Things. Then, they'll discuss some of their favorite weddings in television and film. All that plus What's Making Us Happy this week.
Rank #3: The Martian And What We've Learned About Other Jobs
This week on Pop Culture Happy Hour, NPR Monkey See's Linda Holmes, Glen Weldon, Stephen Thompson and Chris Klimek discuss the fun astronaut flick The Martian. Then they'll discuss what pop culture has taught them about other professions. All that, plus What's Making Us Happy.
Rank #4: Avengers: Infinity War and What's Making Us Happy
The Avengers try to keep a space-tyrant from performing cosmic genocide. The film doubles down on character interactions both familiar and unfamiliar. Guest: Code Switch co-host Gene Demby.
Rank #5: Jason Bourne and Suicide Squad
Critic Chris Klimek and NPR Editor Tanya Ballard-Brown join Stephen Thompson and Glen Weldon for a discussion of two summer blockbusters, Jason Bourne and Suicide Squad. Plus, What's Making Us Happy this week.
Rank #6: Labor Pains And Inspirations
This week on Pop Culture Happy Hour, NPR Monkey See's Linda Holmes, Glen Weldon, Stephen Thompson and Barrie Hardymon celebrate Labor Day with a discussion of childbirth and pregnancy in pop culture. Then it's on to a discussion of times small pop-culture moments have changed the way they behaved and shaped their long-term interests. All that, plus What's Making Us Happy.
Rank #7: Hamilton
Look around, look around at how lucky we are to be alive right now: We didn't want to throw away our shot at talking about Lin-Manuel Miranda's acclaimed musical Hamilton. We decided OK, so we're doing this. But we had to wait for it. Then, a few weeks ago, Code Switch's Gene Demby joined us in the greatest city of the world so we could finally be in the room where it happens. Just you wait, just you wait...
Rank #8: Summer Movie Preview and What's Making Us Happy
The panel predicsts the hits and flops, tell you what they're looking forward to, and help you spend that ticket money wisely. Guest: Aisha Harris, host of Slate's Represent podcast.
Rank #9: The Twilight Zone and What's Making Us Happy
It's been 60 years since The Twilight Zone first aired, with the voice and eventually the face of its creator, Rod Serling. Now, CBS All Access has brought the anthology series back in a new incarnation. This time, the host is Jordan Peele. He is also an executive producer, and the big cast includes Adam Scott, Kumail Nanjiani, Steven Yeun, Chris O'Dowd, Tracy Morgan, Sanaa Lathan, and a whole lot more.
Rank #10: Ghostbusters and Mr. Robot
All Things Considered Host Ari Shapiro joins the gang for a discussion of the new Ghostbusters film and the return of the television thriller Mr. Robot.
Rank #11: Steven Universe and Board Games
Code Switch's Kat Chow and Gene Demby join the show for thoughts on the groundbreaking Cartoon Network series Steven Universe and various card and board games. And, as always, we close with What's Making Us Happy this week.
Rank #12: A Fall Movie and Television Preview
NPR Film Critic Bob Mondello joins the panel for a fall television and movie preview. Plus, what's making us happy this week.
Rank #13: Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones just wrapped its penultimate season, so we sit down for a spoiler-packed discussion with our pals Gene Demby, Barrie Hardymon, and Tasha Robinson.
Rank #14: HGTV and Cooking Shows
Code Switch's Kat Chow and Weekend Edition Editor Barrie Hardymon join Linda Holmes and Glen Weldon for a discussion of home improvement shows, real estate shows, and cooking shows. Plus, What's Making Us Happy.
Rank #15: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Grease: Live, and Musicals On TV
Code Switch's Kat Chow joins the panel to discuss the musical comedy Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, currently airing on the CW. Then the gang discusses Fox's live staging of Grease and other musicals on television. All that, plus What's Making Us Happy.
Rank #16: PEN15
The much-praised Hulu series PEN15 is about two middle-school girls who feel like they might never figure out how to grow into adults. The show was created by Maya Erskine, Anna Konkle and Sam Zvibelman. And the hook is that Erskine and Konkle play versions of themselves as kids, awkwardly surrounded by actual tween actors.
Rank #17: The BFG and The Great British Baking Show
NPR Books editor Petra Mayer joins the panel to discuss The BFG specifically and Steven Spielberg movies in general. Then they move on to talk of crumpets and The Great British Baking Show.
Rank #18: A Conversation With Trevor Noah
Our panel is on vacation, but that doesn't mean there's no show: in October, host Linda Holmes chatted with The Daily Show's new host Trevor Noah about comedy, diversity, decor, visiting South Africa, and lots more.
Rank #19: Awards Show Expectations and Product Placement
Alex Kapelman, host of the Pitch podcast, joins the gang for a discussion of what they want and expect from award shows. Then they'll chat about product placement in pop culture. All that, plus What's Making Us Happy.
Rank #20: Fall TV Preview
The broadcast, cable and streaming networks have a lot on tap for the remainder of 2017. We talk about what we are excited to watch and what we think we survive cancellation