Culture Gabfest

“Can a Video Game Really Be Turned Into a TV Show?” Edition

Slate’s Culture Gabfest on the HBO video game adaptation The Last of Us, the French film Saint Omer, and how Roald Dahl’s last great character is still evolving.


Episode Notes

This week, Dana and Julia are joined by Slate writer Dan Kois. They start by discussing HBO’s new series, The Last of Us, a video game adaptation with culture editor and writer at The New Yorker, Alex Barasch. Then they discuss the French film, Saint Omer, shortlisted for Best International Film at the 2023 Oscars. Finally, they finish by talking about Dan’s essay on how the Trunchbull, the formidable villain of Roald Dahl’s 1988 novel, Matilda is still evolving.

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You can check out Alex Barasch’s piece on The Last of Us here.

And Dan’s audiobook can be purchased through Slate here.


Dan: Two books publishing this week, an anti-romantic comedy, Really Good, Actually by Monica Heisey, about a young woman in Toronto failing to deal with her divorce, and a novel by Matthew Salesses titled The Sense of Wonder about the ways Asian Americans navigate the worlds of sports and entertainment when everything is stacked against them.

Julia: The Smitten Kitchen recipe for seven-yolk pasta dough.

Dana: An unexpected yet beautiful viral Twitter thread by @annethegnome about mushrooms.
Podcast production by Cameron Drews. Production assistance by Yesica Balderrama.
Outro music: “Pull Me Out” by Mike Stringer


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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