Culture Gabfest

The Culture Gabfest “Ah Aliens! Ah Humanity!” Edition

Slate’s Culture Gabfest on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, alien superstructures, and “Bartleby, the Scrivener.”

Listen to Culture Gabfest No. 371 with Stephen Metcalf, Dana Stevens, and Julia Turner

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This week on Slate Plus, the hosts disclose their go-to cocktails.  

On this week’s Slate Culture Gabfest, the gabbers chat about the new CW musical comedy, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Is it crazy good or just good by comparison to the other shows in the bleak fall TV lineup? Next up, did citizen scientists really just discover aliens? Guest Phil Plait joins to separate science fact from science fiction. Finally, guest Andrew Kahn joins to discuss the interactive, annotated version of “Bartleby, the Scrivener” that he recently built for Slate. What does interactivity bring to the interpretation of a classic story?


Links to some of the things we discussed this week follow:

This episode the Slate Culture Gabfest is brought to you by Prudential’s 40/40 Vision, a multimedia microsite exploring what life—and the future—looks like to today’s fortysomethings. Hear what inspires real people, the hopes they have for tomorrow, and much more. See yourself in their stories at


The Culture Gabfest is also brought to you by Club W, leading the “grape to glass” wine revolution. Answer just six simple questions at and their algorithm will create a Palate Profile just for you. Get wine directly to your door, perfectly customized to match your taste. For 50 percent off your first order, go to

And by The Message, a new podcast series from GE Podcast Theater.  


Dana: The music of Zez Confrey

Julia: The Thermapen

Steve: The Welcome to Night Vale live show

Outro: Zez Confrey’s “Kitten on the Keys

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This podcast was produced by Ann Heppermann. Our intern is Lindsey Albracht.

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