The Waves

Hocus Pocus Has No Focus

The Sanderson Sisters are back, but our reaction to witches has evolved.


Episode Notes

On this week’s episode of The Waves, Slate senior editor Rebecca Onion is joined by Jess Zimmerman, who writes about witches, feminism, and all the scary ladies. They sit down to unpack their feelings about Disney’s Hocus Pocus films - both past and present and how the witch discussion has changed in the thirty years between movies.

In Slate Plus, is Taylor Swift’s Anti Hero music video feminist?


Rebecca: The audiobook of The Mercies by Kiran Milwood Hargrave and read by Jessie Buckley.

Jess: The new book Toil and Trouble by Lisa Kroger and Melanie Anderson.

Podcast production by Cheyna Roth with editorial oversight by Shannon Palus, Daisy Rosario and Alicia Montgomery.

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About the Show

Each week a pair of writers and guests talk through one news story we can’t stop thinking about, and unpack what gender has to do with it.

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  • Rebecca Onion is a Slate senior editor and the author of Innocent Experiments.

  • Jess Zimmerman is a writer and editor who lives with a dog and a human in Brooklyn. She has written for Hazlitt, Catapult, the Guardian, the New Republic, and others.