Spoiler Specials

Da 5 Bloods

Dana Stevens and Aisha Harris spoil Spike Lee’s film about Black Vietnam War veterans.


Episode Notes

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On the Spoiler Special podcast, Slate critics discuss movies, the occasional TV show, and, once in a blue moon, another podcast, in full spoiler-filled detail. This week, Dana Stevens, Slate’s movie critic, is joined by Aisha Harris, writer and editor for The New York Times’ Opinion section to spoil Da 5 Bloods.

Spike Lee’s newest film follows a group of Black Vietnam War veterans as they reunite years later. The group returns to Vietnam to find the remains of Stormin’ Norman, their commander who died during the war. While they are there, they try to retrieve a lost cache of CIA gold. At first the search seems easy–too easy. But soon familial tensions, lingering PTSD, and environmental hazards start complicating the mission. How many of the remaining Bloods will make it back out of the jungle?

Plus: Dana and Aisha break down Spike Lee’s employment of numerous film techniques, including an innovative use of four different aspect ratios.

You can read Sam Adams’ review here.

You can read Matthew Dessem’s piece on the aspect ratios here.

You can also read Matthew Dessem’s piece on the real story behind the landmine scene here.

If you want to hear more analysis of Da 5 Bloods, listen to Slate’s Culture Gabfest here.

Note: As the title indicates, this podcast contains spoilers galore.

Email us at spoilers@slate.com.

Podcast production by Rosemary Belson.


About the Show

On Slate’s Spoiler Specials, Slate critics, such as Dana Stevens and Willa Paskin, discuss new movies and TV shows in spoiler-filled detail. We dissect twist endings, plot holes, and other secrets you won’t read in reviews.

WARNING: This podcast contains spoilers (duh).

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  • Aisha Harris is a co-host of NPR's Pop Culture Happy Hour, and the author of the forthcoming book Wannabe: Reckonings With the Pop Culture That Shapes Me.

  • Dana Stevens is Slate’s movie critic.