Culture Gabfest

Culture Gabfest “Plastic Stormtrooper Codpiece” Edition

Slate’s Culture Gabfest on Andor, Tár, and the bestselling poet that America forgot.


Episode Notes

This week, the panel begins by discussing Cate Blachett’s new film Tár. Then, they dig into the ways the Star Wars universe is expanded in the series Andor. Finally, Slate’s own Dan Kois joins the panel to discuss his recent feature on forgotten American poet Rod McKuen.

In Slate Plus, the panel talks about the practice of reading out loud.

Email us at


Dana: Sharing a musical endorsement after coming across a CD on the street by chance. Josquin Desprez’s choral religious work is wonderful thinking music, and this version is performed by La Chapelle Royale.

Julia: A character in Tár inspires a revisit to the incredible New York Times obituary of Gilbert E. Kaplan written by Margalit Fox in 2016.

Steve: Joining Dana with a music suggestion, enjoy the oddly bewitching charm of jazz pianist McKoy Tyner’s Nights of Ballads & Blues from 1963.

Podcast production by Cameron Drews. Production assistance by Yesica Balderrama.

Outro music is “Break The Line” by Coma Svensson.


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.

All episodes