Decoder Ring

Unicorn Poop

How did excrement get cute?


Episode Notes

Drawing of proliferating cute poop emojis.
Illustration by Benjamin Frisch.

Decoder Ring is a podcast about cracking cultural mysteries. In every episode, host Willa Paskin takes on a cultural question, object, idea, or habit and speaks with experts, historians, and obsessives to try and figure out where it comes from, what it means, and why it matters.

We live in a world of cute poop. Over the last decade, there’s been an explosion of it in popular culture: the poop emoji, unicorn poop cookies, unicorn poop marijuana strains, toys like the Poopsie Slime Surprise Unicorn, and much, much more. On this episode, we trace the rise of the phenomenon, starting with the original Japanese poop emoji and ending with the new, algorithmically driven world of kids toys on YouTube.


This episode was produced by Willa Paskin and Benjamin Frisch.


About the Show

In each episode, host Willa Paskin takes a cultural question, object, or habit; examines its history; and tries to figure out what it means and why it matters.

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