Culture Gabfest

“Pongs of the Past” Edition

Slate Culture Gabfest on Let Them All Talk, 2020 in TV, and smells from the past.

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Episode Notes

This episode aired December 23, 2020.

This week Stephen and Dana are joined by Slate editor and writer Dan Kois. First, they discuss the new Steven Soderbergh movie Let Them All Talk, starring Meryl Streep, Dianne Wiest, and Candice Bergen. Then they talk to Slate TV critic Willa Paskin about the trends in TV this year and why “popular” TV isn’t always “good” TV. After that, the hosts talk about a new project in the UK that aims to revive smells from the past.

In Slate Plus, the hosts debate whether the labels “movie” and “TV show” have lost some of their meaning in the age of streaming.

Podcast production by Cameron Drews. Production assistance by Rachael Allen.

Outro Music: “If Only I Was a Poet” by Staffan Carlen


Dana: Mark Morris’s Music for the Holidays playlist

Dan: The two-person game Patchwork

Steve: Bud Powell’s Moods and Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall


About the Show

New York Times critic Dwight Garner says, “The Slate Culture Gabfest is one of the highlights of my week.” The award-winning Culturefest features Slate culture critics Stephen Metcalf, Dana Stevens, and Julia Turner debating the week in culture, from highbrow to pop.

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