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For this week's wrap panel, culture critics Rad Simonpillai, Kathleen Newman-Bremang and Sarah-Tai Black join host Elamin Abdelmahmoud to weigh in on Vulture’s controversial critique of Beyoncé, Time Magazine's Person of the Year cover story with Taylor Swift, and what the online reaction to them says about the state of celebrity criticism today. They also discuss Todd Haynes’ psychological dramedy May December, and Netflix’s dubious efforts at marketing it.
Director Emerald Fennell’s latest film, Saltburn, is proving to be even more polarizing than her controversial 2020 debut, Promising Young Woman. Guardian film critic Adrian Horton explains why this tale of class mobility, queer lust and murder has divided audiences between those who think it’s a stylish, sexy, satiricial thriller, and those who think it’s just empty provocation with nothing interesting to say about privilege. Plus, Guy Fieri recently signed a 3-year deal with the Food Network worth $100 million USD, making him the highest paid celebrity TV chef. Culture critic Niko Stratis digs into what makes Guy Fieri worth so many dollars.
If there is one show that could serve as a time capsule for the early aughts, it's The O.C. The series launched indie music careers, and turned comic book nerds into heartthrobs. 20 years after its premiere, creator Josh Schwartz and executive producer Stephanie Savage join host Elamin Abdelmahmoud to reflect on the ups and downs of making the hit show.
Hosted by Marc Fennell, Stuff the British Stole peels back the true histories behind objects acquired by the British Empire that sit in museums and galleries across the world, and meets the people that want them back! The first two seasons of the podcast are available now on CBC Listen. You can also stream the television series now on CBC Gem. Here, Fennell tells the true story of Matoaka - a young Powhatan girl who you probably know as Pocahontas. This is the mystery of a child, a hidden history and a stolen story.
More than 200 years after the Elgin — or Parthenon — marbles were torn from one of Greece's most sacred landmarks and shipped to the U.K., the Greek government continues to fight for their return. Now, the marbles are at the centre of a diplomatic row between the two countries. Elamin talks to Marc Fennell, the host of Stuff The British Stole, about the latest on this historic case study and the questions it raises about how museums are decolonizing — and what’s getting in the way.
Former April Wine singer Myles Goodwyn died this weekend at the age of 75. Craig Northey, one of the founding members of the band Odds, helps us remember Goodwyn's impact and how April Wine's music became an essential part of Canadiana. Elamin also remembers Toronto filmmaker Charles Officer, a giant in Canadian film and television who passed away this weekend after a long illness. Plus, writers Keith Phipps and Anne T. Donahue, as well as former Nicolas Cage stand-in Marco Kyris, stop by Commotion to look at Nicolas Cage's legacy in 2023 following the release of his latest film, Dream Scenario.
For this week's wrap panel, culture critics Niko Stratis, Rollie Pemberton and A. Harmony join host Elamin Abdelmahmoud to discuss Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé and how much the famously private superstar pulls back the curtain on her record-breaking world tour, Dolly Parton’s debut rock album, and whether Noah Kahan is bringing back “stomp and holler” music.
‘Tis the season for Spotify Wrapped, when the music streaming service delivers a personalized and highly shareable breakdown of users' annual listening habits. Richie Assaly and Chris Murphy explain how Spotify Wrapped became a social media phenomenon, and how it helps generate a lot of goodwill for a company often seen as the Scrooge of the music industry. Plus, more than 50 artists have signed an open letter about how Canadian cultural institutions are failing to Indigenize and decolonize their ways of operating. Aylan Couchie tells Elamin why she organized the letter.
The latest Disney animated film, Wish, was supposed to be a holiday blockbuster, but a lukewarm opening weekend and harsh reviews suggest it won’t be the next Frozen-level phenomenon. This comes on the heels of other recent box-office disappointments like The Marvels and the latest Indiana Jones film, that have put a damper on the company as it celebrates its 100th anniversary. With Disney hosting its annual town hall meeting for investors this week, we speak to film critics Bilge Ebiri and Kristy Puchko about what’s gone wrong at the House of the Mouse, and how it can correct course.
Karl Tremblay was a national hero in Quebec, and the province is still mourning after the lead singer of Les Cowboys Fringants died earlier this month. Fan and culture journalist Dominic Tardiff helps us remember him. Plus, the new competition show Squid Game: The Challenge is getting a lot of heat for glossing over the anti-capitalist message of the original, dark drama it’s inspired from. But despite that, many critics say this adaptation is surprisingly compelling. Alison Herman and Nicholas Quah break down what makes this show a must-watch.
A new documentary about Buffy Sainte-Marie’s life just won an International Emmy, after a CBC report raised questions about her Indigenous identity. Freelance journalist Michelle Cyca joins host Elamin Abdelmahmoud to talk about what this win means, and how we move forward with Buffy's legacy as an artist. Plus, for our ongoing celebration of hip-hop's 50th anniversary, Elamin sits down with veteran music journalist and filmmaker Nelson George to look back at the rise of the culture and hip-hop journalism.
Film critics Sarah-Tai Black, Rad Simonpillai and Hanna Flint join host Elamin Abdelmahmoud to chat about how Hollywood is holding up post-strike, Ridley Scott’s unique press tour for his new film Napoleon, and what happened when TikTok’s favourite comedian Matt Rife put out a Netflix special.
Taylor Swift’s first Eras Tour show in Rio de Janeiro was met with an intense heat wave. A 23-year-old woman named Ana Clara Benevides Machado died during the show, and the tragedy has fans grappling with accountability. Culture journalists Nicole Froio and Niko Stratis unpack how fans are feeling about their safety at shows, and how unprepared we are to meet the far-reaching impacts of climate change. Plus, Crocs have been around for more than two decades, and they’re more popular than ever. Culture writer Scaachi Koul talks about why ugly fashion is having a moment.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of OutKast's Grammy-winning album Speakerboxxx/The Love Below, and the 25th anniversary of their acclaimed album Aquemini. Plus, member of the duo André 3000 just released his first solo album, New Blue Sun. With lots to celebrate, OutKast and Southern hip-hop academic Regina Bradley and veteran music journalist David Dennis Jr. join host Elamin Abdelmahmoud to share their reactions to the old and new tunes.
As the Israel-Hamas war continues, there has been an unmistakable upheaval in the art world. Writers Maris Kreizman, Josh Gondelman and Jen Sookfong Lee are grappling with the consequences of speaking up. They join host Elamin Abdelmahmoud and arts reporter Josh O’Kane to share their thoughts on the cancelled exhibits, protests, and the people who’ve lost jobs and opportunities for sharing their points of view — and what's at stake within our cultural institutions.
With news of musician Cassie’s launching a suit against music mogul Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs that included allegations of rape, abuse and trafficking — and then privately settling a day later — Kathleen Newman-Bremang and David Dennis Jr. share their reaction and early analysis to the case. Plus, Wile E. Coyote voice actor Eric Bauza tells us about how social media outrage over Warner Brother’s decision to shelve the film Coyote vs. Acme just might help save it.
For this week's wrap panel, culture writers Jackson Weaver, Chris Murphy and Anne T. Donahue join host Elamin Abdelmahmoud to weigh in on how the new season of The Crown handles Princess Diana’s death, whether Nathan Fielder’s new series The Curse is the most uncomfortable television show of the year, and if the new animated series Scott Pilgrim Takes Off delivers for fans of the Toronto-based cult classic.
A new term, "funflation," has been coined to describe how spending on entertainment is way up despite the fact that many people are struggling to make ends meet. Host Elamin Abdelmahmoud makes sense of it with Mark Harrison, founder of the MH3 Collective and Black Talent Initiative who’s been crunching the numbers, and Amelia Eqbal, a self-proclaimed poster girl for funflation who’s seen 11 concerts in the past year.
A new HBO documentary, David Holmes: The Boy Who Lived, explores the special bond between actor Daniel Radcliffe and his Harry Potter stunt double David Holmes, who was paralyzed in an on-set accident. Veteran stunt coordinator Kirk Caouette and actor/podcaster Carolina Bartczak share their thoughts on how the field of stunt work is changing for the better, and worse. Plus, journalist Josh O’Kane explains why one of Canada’s most respected arts organizations, the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, is in turmoil.
The “bimbo” archetype has been showing up a lot lately, whether it's on TikTok or in movies like Barbie and Mean Girls: The Musical — but for reasons you might not expect. Host Elamin Abdemahmoud chats with culture writers Rayne Fisher-Quann, Rebecca Jennings and Andrea Werhun about why people are self-identifying as bimbos, and whether you can really reclaim an identity intended to disempower you.
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