Pretty Much Pop #104: King Arthur Reigns O’er Pop Culture

With the recent theatrical release of The Green Knight, Mark and Brian along with Den of Geek’s David Crow and the very British Al Baker consider the range of cinematic Arthuriana, including Excalibur (1981), Camelot (1967), King Arthur (2004), King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017), First Knight (1995), Sword of the Valiant (1983), Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (1973), and Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975).

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop or by subscribing via Apple Podcasts to the Mark Lintertainment Channel.

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Pretty Much Pop #103: Queering Video Games w/ Naomi Clark

“Queering” doesn’t just mean adding LGBTQ+ representation to games; it’s disruption of norms through added player freedom.

Mark and guest co-host Tyler engage game designer Naomi Clark on sandbox games, character creation, how games train us, glitches, speed runs, and more, touching on The Sims, The Last of Us, Cyberbpunk, Mass Effect, and her own games like Sissyfight 2000 and the card game Consentacle.

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop or by subscribing via Apple Podcasts to the Mark Lintertainment Channel.

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Pretty Much Pop #102: What the Pop!? Season 1 Wrap-Up

After 101 episodes and a bit over two years, Mark, Erica, and Brian reflect on what we’ve learned and set a course for the future. What have we determined about how and why we consume? What’s the relation between consumption and creativity?

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Pretty Much Pop #101: The “Conjuring” Retroverse

Mark, Erica, and Brian delve into this 8-film horror franchise started by James Wan in 2013 through The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It. Do their demons scare us, and do their Catholic defenses provide a convincing antidote? Is it OK to valorize the Warrens, the supernatural detectives who were most likely hucksters in real life?

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

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Pretty Much Pop #100: Directing Comedies w/ Heather Fink

Director/writer/sound operator Heather Fink joins Mark, Erica, and Brian to discuss the role of the director in making a good comedy, covering TV vs. film, sex scenes, not telling actors how to read their lines, editing, and more.

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

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Pretty Much Pop #99: The Music of Your Youth w/ Jon Lamoreaux (The Hustle podcast)

To what degree to our childhood favorites persist into adulthood? Are we doomed to love the songs of our generation best? What causes the generation gap in musical tastes?

Mark, Erica, Brian, plus Jon, the host of The Hustle Podcast share their nostalgia and discuss “guilty pleasures,” the different pre-critical stages at which songs burrow themselves into our brains, aging pop stars, film soundtracks, and more.

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

Pretty Much Pop#96: Modernizing D&D w/ Amanda McLoughlin

What’s the status of Dungeons & Dragons and other table-top role-playing games in pop culture? Fantasy settings are no longer just for the ultra-geeky, but role-playing may still seem foreign.

Mark, Erica, and Brian are joined by the host of Join the Party to discuss acting out your fantasy, RPG basics, real-play podcasts, racism (“kill all orcs!”), and more.

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

Pretty Much Pop #95: “The Nevers” With a Side of Whedon

Mark, Erica, and Brian discuss the HBO Max show out Victorian-era super-powered feminine outcasts, helmed and now abandoned by the creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, etc. Does this reduced-by-the-pandemic show still work? Does knowing the complaints about Joss Whedon affect our consumption?

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

Pretty Much Pop #94: Psychology of Video Game Engagement w/ Jamie Madigan

Why do people play video games, and what keeps them playing? Mark, Erica, and Brian are joined by the host of the Psychology of Video Games podcast to discuss player types, motivation vs. engagement, incentives and feedback, as well as the gamification of work or school environments. We touch on Donkey Kong, Dark Souls, It Takes Two, Returnal, Hades, Subnautica, Fortnite, and Age of Z.

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Pretty Much Pop #93: Made for Love (and other Silicon Villainy)

Thinking about the tech genius as villain trope in TV shows like Made for Love, Devs, Silicon Valley, and the documentary WeWork. They’re our modern mad scientists, able to unleash science to surveil, control, and possibly kill us. Mark, Erica, and Brian consider how it works in comedy vs. serious media, how it relates to real-life tech billionaires, and the feminist angle.

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

Pretty Much Pop #92: Collectibles and Collecting w/ Matt Young

What drives someone to collect Star Wars figures or Transformers or LEGOs or whatever else?

Mark, Erica, and Brian are joined by guest Matt Young of the Hello from the Magic Tavern and Improvised Star Trek podcasts to talk about this potentially expensive and life-eating habit.

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Pretty Much Pop #91: Pet Culture w/ Trainer Hannah Branigan

What is with the weird relationship we Americans have with our pets? Many of us treat them as our babies, yet of course they’re our captives.

Dog trainer Hannah Branigan, host of Drinking from the Toilet, joins Mark, Erica, and Brian to talk about pets as entertainment, as hobby, and as pandemic companions. How can we make this relationship as beneficial as possible for all involved, and how can learning to be a better pet owner inform our treatment of other people?

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

Pretty Much Pop #90: Godzilla vs. Kong vs. All the Kaiju!

Are giant monsters stomping on cities just stupid fun, or do they channel deep fears of helplessness? Do we care at all about the humans in these films? Are they legit sci-fi or political commentary?

Mark, Erica, and Brian reflect on the MonsterVerse films, plus the filmic histories of Godzilla and King Kong, Pacific Rim, Colossal, The Host, Cloverfield, and more.

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Pretty Much Pop #89: The Chicago 7 (and the Aaron Sorkinverse)

Brian, Erica, and Mark consider one of this year’s Oscar-nominated films, The Trial of the Chicago 7, and the film and TV career of its writer/director Aaron Sorkin. We get into The West Wing, The Social Network, Steve Jobs, The Newsroom, and more, focusing on his recurring characters, plots based on true stories, and whether his speechifying is manipulative in the ways that we enjoy or not.

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PMP#88: Indie Animation w/ Benjamin Goldman

Animation is so labor-intensive that it seems designed for corporate domination a la Disney. Mark, Erica, and Brian are joined by animator Benjamin Goldman to discuss doing animation on your own.

What qualifies as “indie?” What are we as adult viewers looking from this medium? How do images relate to narration? How realistic should the animation look? You may want to watch Benjamin’s short film (currently featured by The New Yorker) “Eight Nights.”

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Pretty Much Pop #87: Female Buddy Comedies w/ Erica’s Female Buddy Micah Greene

On Barb & Star Go to Vista Del Mar, and how inserting women into the buddy comedy format might lead to deeper exploration of friendships. Two sets of long-time friends–Erica and Micah, and Mark and Brian–look at tropes and character dynamics, touching on Booksmart, Bridesmaids, Sisters, et al. 

For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop.

Pretty Much Pop #86: What Irish Means w/ Black 47’s Larry Kirwan

St. Patrick’s Day has passed: What sort of representation of Ireland has made it to the U.S. through such celebrations? Who gets to decide what’s authentically Irish?

Mark, Erica, and Brian are joined by writer and musician Larry to talk about his immigrant experience, covering history, music, humor, language, slurs, stereotypes, and his new book Rockaway Blue.

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Pretty Much Pop #85: What the WandaVision!? w/ Rolando Nieves (and Bonus Aftertalk)

The debut Disney+ Marvel series is… a tribute to classic sit-coms? Mark, Erica, Brian, and guest Rolando try to figure out whether this experiment was successful, whether you have to be a die-hard to get it, and the potential for future oddball superhero outings..

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