Maximum Fun

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Ellie Kemper & Flying Lotus

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Ellie Kemper
Guests: 
Flying Lotus

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in Apple Podcasts or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.


Photo: Jason Merritt / Getty Images

Ellie Kemper on her career as a comedic actress, wrestling with privilege, and her Emmy-nominated role in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

[r] Ellie Kemper first achieved breakout success as Erin Hannon on the NBC sitcom The Office. Her turn as the happy-go-lucky office receptionist was popular with fans and critics alike and showcased her gifts as a comedic actress. Those talents have since been leveraged on the big screen in box office hit films like Bridesmaids and 21 Jump Street.

Now she plays the title character in the Netflix Original series, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, a role for which she recently earned her second straight Emmy nomination for Best Comedy Actress. Despite the show’s dark premise -- Kimmy Schmidt was held captive by a cult leader for years in an underground bunker -- the show plays it all for laughs as she tries to rebuild her life in New York City. Her years of isolation have left her ignorant of many cultural touchstones, but she pushes through with an enthusiasm and tenacity that is both endearing and hilarious.

Ellie joined Jesse in 2016 to talk about her early experiences of living and working in New York, mining material from her time at Princeton and her self-consciousness about privilege.

Catch all the episodes of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix. The show was recently renewed for a fourth season.

Listen to Jesse's 2016 interview with Ellie Kemper.

Flying Lotus on his aunt Alice Coltrane, J Dilla, and more

Flying Lotus is a critically acclaimed music producer whose sound lies somewhere between progressive hip-hop and dance music. In 2010, Jesse spoke to him about his unique style and his remarkable musical lineage -- his aunt was the great jazz pianist Alice Coltrane. FlyLo also tells Jesse about how his mother convinced him to submit music to Cartoon Network's [adult swim], and the influence of the late hip-hop producer J Dilla on his music.

You can find out what Flying Lotus is up to next at Flying-Lotus.com. You can also watch his 2016 film Kuso on iTunes, or wherever else you rent your films.

Listen to Jesse's 2010 interview with Flying Lotus.

Photo: Andrew H. Walker / Getty Images

The Outshot: Remembering Phife Dawg

Jesse fondly remembers Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest as a "big brother" figure in hip-hop.

Listen to Jesse's Outshot on the late rapper Phife Dawg.

One Bad Mother Episode 217: Back To School Anxiety, Plus Actor and Children's Book Author Michael Ian Black

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Show: 
One Bad Mother
Guests: 
Michael Ian Black

Biz and Theresa load up our backpacks with unnecessary anxiety! School is great and the teachers are better, so what could be keeping us up at night? Will the teacher be a good fit for our kid? Is this the REAL school supply list? We gotta get kids where? WHEN?! Does it count as bad communication from the school if we don’t read any of it? Should any of this be stressing us out? Theresa rolls with it while Biz lets her sadness for her ever aging children manifest itself into an unhealthy “yes!” Plus Biz has a screamer, Theresa goes to the beach, and we talk to Michael Ian Black about fatherhood, twitter, writing children's books, and Wet Hot American Summer: 10 Years Later (in which he stars), which is streaming now on Netflix, to our endless delight!

Follow Michael on twitter @michaelianblack and don't forget to check out his latest children's book A Child's First Book of Trump and his hilarious new Netflix series Wet Hot American Summer: 10 Years Later!

Brooklyn: Tickets for One Bad Mother Live at The Bell House on Saturday October 14th are on sale now!

Los Angeles: Join us for One Bad Mother LIVE at the Bootleg Theater on Saturday August 26th! It's a matinee! Tickets on sale now!

Check out our book! You're Doing A Great Job!: 100 Ways You're Winning at Parenting!

Thank you to all our listeners who support the show as monthly members of MaximumFun.org. Our sponsors this week are NatureBox and Third Love. To get three free snacks with your first order, go to naturebox.com/BADMOTHER. And go to thirdlove.com/BADMOTHER to try a Third Love bra for free for 30 days!

Share your genius and fail moments! Call 206-350-9485
Be sure to tell us at the top of your message whether you're leaving a genius moment, a fail, or a rant! Thanks!!

Share a personal or commercial message on the show! Details at MaximumFun.org/Jumbotron.

Subscribe to One Bad Mother in iTunes
Join our mailing list
Join the amazing community that is our private One Bad Mother Facebook group
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Like us on Facebook!
Get a OBM tee, tank, baby shirt, or mug from the MaxFunStore

You can suggest a topic or a guest for an upcoming show by sending an email to onebadmother@maximumfun.org.

Show Music
Opening theme: Summon the Rawk, Kevin MacLeod (http://incompetech.com)
Ones and Zeros, Awesome, Beehive Sessions (http://awesomeinquotes.com, also avail on iTunes)
Mom Song, Adira Amram, Hot Jams For Teens (http://adiraamram.com, avail on iTunes)
Telephone, Awesome, Beehive Sessions (http://awesomeinquotes.com, also avail on iTunes)
Closing music: Mama Blues, Cornbread Ted and the Butterbeans

Pop Rocket: Episode 137 Netflix and Chill with Dave White

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Show: 
Pop Rocket
Guests: 
Guy Branum
Guests: 
Dave White
Guests: 
Karen Tongson
Guests: 
Alonso Duralde

This week on Pop Rocket Guy and the gang are joined by film critic Dave White as they do some serious netflix-ing and chilling. The group dives deep on their favorite titles available on the platform, and also discuss the highs and lows of cutting the cable cord. Guy dissects the reasons behind Shonda Rhimes jumping from the ABC ship, and Dave discusses his need from Netflix for more sugary reality TV shows, like Chasing Cameron. The gang compares and contrasts all the streaming services from Hulu to Crackle. Plus we also discover that Guy has a great affinity for the theme song to the Patti Lupone vehicle Life Goes On.

Guy and Karen have a semi-shared What We're All About in discussing their love for Difficult People. But Guy is all about a lot this week as he also shares his passion for Big Brother. Dave and Alonso are both all about documentaries, but they couldn't more different films. Alonso talks about the new Ferguson documentary Whose Streets?, and Dave is all about Escapes, a film chronicling the life of Blade Runner writer and actor Hampton Fancher.

With Dave White, Alonso Duralde, Karen Tongson, and Guy Branum.

Jams:

Alonso - The Summer Knows - Laura Fygi
Dave - Polegnala e Todora - Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares
Karen - Matthew Morrison - You've Got to Be Carefully Taught

Each week we’ll add everyone’s jams to this handy August Spotify playlist.

You can let us know what you think of Pop Rocket and suggest topics in our Facebook group or via @PopRocket on Twitter.

Produced by Christian Dueñas and Casey O'Brien for MaximumFun.org.

Bullseye: Alfred Molina and Louie Anderson

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Alfred Molina
Guests: 
Louie Anderson

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in Apple Podcasts or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.


Photo by Jesse Thorn

British actor Alfred Molina on portraying director Robert Aldrich in Feud: Bette and Joan and playing bad guys

This week Jesse sits down with British actor Alfred Molina to talk about his starring role in the FX series Feud, which tells the story of the rivalry between actresses Bette Davis and Joan Crawford during the making of the film What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? He plays legendary director Robert Aldrich, for which he's earned an Emmy nod.

Alfred Molina grew up in England, and as the son of immigrants from Spain and Italy, he didn't always feel fully at home there. He tells Jesse that he was even told to change his name when he got his start in acting.

Alfred has a particular knack for being able to capture your attention in whatever project he's in, even when he's playing unlikeable characters, including villains. He talks to Jesse about his approach to playing unsavory people, whether it's a backstabbing guide in Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark, Dr. Octopus in Spiderman 2, or a crazy drug dealer in Paul Thomas Anderson's Boogie Nights.

Be sure to catch Alfred as Robert Aldrich in the FX series Feud: Bette and Joan. You can also find out what he's up to on Twitter.

Listen to Jesse's interview with Alfred Molina.

Photo by Jesse Thorn

Comedian Louie Anderson on playing Christine Baskets in the FX series Baskets, family, and standup

Also this week: a visit from comedian and actor Louie Anderson. Louie's been doing standup for close to thirty years. Outside standup, he's had a long career in film and television. He had his own cartoon on FOX in the mid-'90s, appeared in Coming to America and Ferris Bueller's Day Off, and he even hosted Family Feud for a few years. Louie's also written three books, one of which is a collection of letters to his late father.

Lately, Louie's career has taken a slightly different turn. In the FX series Baskets, he plays Christine Baskets, the mother of a hapless rodeo clown named Chip Baskets, who's played by Zach Galiafianakis (Zach spoke to Bullseye about playing Chip Baskets in 2016). You could say he's performing in drag, but he plays the role completely sincere, injecting it with humor, sweetness, and vulnerability. The result is something that borders on magical.

Family looms large in Louie's comedy and work. Christine Baskets is loosely based on his late mother, Ora Anderson, whom he says was the glue that held his family together during his difficult childhood in St. Paul, Minnesota. Louie talks with Jesse about the passing of his younger brother and the effect it had on him. They also talk about Louie's perceptions of his own career, including his comedy style and on-screen appearance.

Find out the latest with Louie, including his latest projects and standup dates, at LouieAnderson.com. You can also follow him on Twitter.

Listen to Jesse's full interview with Louie Anderson.

The Outshot: The Thomas Crown Affair

Faye Dunaway. Steve McQueen. Sex chess. These are a few of Jesse's favorite things in the 1968 film The Thomas Crown Affair.

Listen to Jesse's Outshot on the 1968 film The Thomas Crown Affair.

Pop Rocket: Episode 136 Unpopular Opinions

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Show: 
Pop Rocket
Guests: 
Karen Tongson
Guests: 
Wynter Mitchell
Guests: 
Alonso Duralde

This week on Pop Rocket Karen hosts and the gang considers unpopular pop culture opinions. Sparked by a conversation in the Pop Rocket Facebook group, the panel talks about the opinions that they hold that run counter to the collective cultural narrative. In this episode no opinion is too unpopular to air, not even one concerning the Queen Bey herself. We learn about Wynter's love for Desus & Mero, and Karen tells us about the drama in Kentucky surrounding the bourbon heiress Hollis Bulleit who is claiming her family is shafting her since she came out. Plus, Wynter throws down the gauntlet when it comes to the song of the summer, and Karen serves us music that pays tribute to Margaret Wappler.

With Wynter Mitchell, Alonso Duralde, and Karen Tongson.

Jams:

Alonso - In the Cool Cool Cool of the Evening - Rosemary Clooney
Wynter - Creature Comfort - Arcade Fire
Karen - Haley - Big Thief

Each week we’ll add everyone’s jams to this handy August Spotify playlist.

You can let us know what you think of Pop Rocket and suggest topics in our Facebook group or via @PopRocket on Twitter.

Produced by Christian Dueñas and Kara Hart for MaximumFun.org.

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Ani DiFranco and Game of Thrones' Aidan Gillen

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Ani DiFranco
Guests: 
Aidan Gillen

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in Apple Podcasts or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.


Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images

Ani DiFranco on her new album Binary, meeting Prince, and more

This week Jesse hosts singer-songwriter Ani DiFranco. Ani moved out of her mom's house at 15 years old, just after she started writing her first songs. At the start of her career as a solo artist, she played house shows, dingy venues, and slept on couches. She eventually started a record label, Righteous Babe, which she releases her music through as well as artists like Andrew Bird, Arto Lindsay and Sara Lee.

Ani has a huge following of incredibly passionate fans. She's sold millions of records and has won awards and acclaim from critics. Perhaps more than any other singer, Ani DiFranco is defined by her independence.

On her latest record, Binary, she kind of sets that label aside. The record features collaborations with people like Justin Vernon from Bon Iver, Maceo Parker, Gail Ann Dorsey, and much more. At its heart, it's an album about relationships, and she says it's changed her approach to writing.

Click Here to listen to Jesse's interview with Ani DiFranco!

Photo: HBO

Aidan Gillen on playing Littlefinger in Game of Thrones

Also on the show this week is actor Aidan Gillen. You might have seen him on HBO's The Wire as Mayor Tommy Carcetti. He also starred on the original British version of Queer as Folk.

If you're one of the millions of people watching Game of Thrones right now, you'll know him as Lord Petyr Baelish, or Littlefinger. Even on a show like Game of Thrones, with its dozens of complex, messy and fascinating characters, Littlefinger stands out. Since the show's debut, Gillen's character has allied himself with maybe half the cast, only to betray almost all of them. And after seven seasons on TV's most violent show, nobody's killed him yet. When Aidan plays Littlefinger, it's really fun to watch. He's cunning, opaque and devious, but he's sincere when it counts.

Aidan talks to Jesse about his various roles, and what it was like to work with the playwright David Mamet.

Click Here to listen to Jesse's interview with Aidan Gillen!

Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Image

The Outshot: Randy Newman's "Simon Smith and the Amazing Dancing Bear"

Jesse tells us about an old song of Randy Newman's that reveals a jaundiced view of fame and popularity.

Click here to watch Randy Newman's performance of the song.

Click Here to listen to Jesse's outshot on Randy Newman!

One Bad Mother Episode 215: Why Am I Supposed To Like That?

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Show: 
One Bad Mother
Guests: 
Biz Ellis
Guests: 
Theresa Thorn

Biz and Theresa talk about all the little things we hate that we hadn't thought about in years....till our kids did them to us! Pool splashing, sparklers, being surprised...these aren't phobias or life-threatening but they still bug the crap out of us! So, do we ban them or toughen up? What if we just try to explain rationally to a three-year-old that we'd like them to stop? Yep! That will work! Plus, Biz sees herself in Katy Belle and Theresa returns from the woods!

Brooklyn: Tickets for One Bad Mother Live at The Bell House on Saturday October 14th are on sale now!

Los Angeles: Join us for One Bad Mother LIVE at the Bootleg Theater on Saturday August 26th! It's a matinee! Tickets on sale now!

Check out our book! You're Doing A Great Job!: 100 Ways You're Winning at Parenting!

Thank you to all our listeners who support the show as monthly members of MaximumFun.org. Our sponsors this week are NatureBox and Third Love. To get three free snacks with your first order, go to naturebox.com/BADMOTHER. And go to thirdlove.com/BADMOTHER to try a Third Love bra for free for 30 days!

Share your genius and fail moments! Call 206-350-9485
Be sure to tell us at the top of your message whether you're leaving a genius moment, a fail, or a rant! Thanks!!

Share a personal or commercial message on the show! Details at MaximumFun.org/Jumbotron.

Subscribe to One Bad Mother in iTunes
Join our mailing list
Join the amazing community that is our private One Bad Mother Facebook group
Follow One Bad Mother on Twitter
Follow Biz on Twitter
Follow Theresa on Twitter
Like us on Facebook!
Get a OBM tee, tank, baby shirt, or mug from the MaxFunStore

You can suggest a topic or a guest for an upcoming show by sending an email to onebadmother@maximumfun.org.

Show Music
Opening theme: Summon the Rawk, Kevin MacLeod (http://incompetech.com)
Ones and Zeros, Awesome, Beehive Sessions (http://awesomeinquotes.com, also avail on iTunes)
Mom Song, Adira Amram, Hot Jams For Teens (http://adiraamram.com, avail on iTunes)
Telephone, Awesome, Beehive Sessions (http://awesomeinquotes.com, also avail on iTunes)
Closing music: Mama Blues, Cornbread Ted and the Butterbeans

Pop Rocket: Episode 135 Girls Trip with Alonso Duralde

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Show: 
Pop Rocket
Guests: 
Guy Branum
Guests: 
Alonso Duralde
Guests: 
Karen Tongson
Guests: 
Wynter Mitchell

This week, we are joined by film critic and host of the Linoleum Knife podcast Alonso Duralde! Alonso will be with us for the next couple of months while Margaret is on maternity leave, bringing his particular knowledge of film and the industry to the show. But this week: Girls Trip. The movie stars Regina Hall, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Queen Latifah, and breakout star Tiffany Haddish. They discuss Tiffany Haddish's hilarious performance in this movie, but does Hollywood know what to do with her next? They talk about the role of blackness and black female friendship in this movie, and why it's important more of these films get made. And finally, and probably most importantly, they talk about the role that black hair plays in the movie, and what each of the character's hair styles tells you about their personality.

Guy is all about The Beaverton, which is Canada's answer to The Onion News Network, and Wynter is all about the Jason Bateman led Netflix series Ozark. Plus, Karen catches up on Queen Sugar and Alonso is still watching Degrassi. Plus, we hear what each of the panelists is listening to this week.

With Guy Branum, Wynter Mitchell, Alonso Duralde, and Karen Tongson.

Jams:

Guy - Cars That Go Boom - L'Trimm
Alonso - Better The Devil You Know - Kylie Mynogue
Wynter - Idolize Me - Yellow Alex
Karen - Way Back - TLCand

Each week we’ll add everyone’s jams to this handy August Spotify playlist.

You can let us know what you think of Pop Rocket and suggest topics in our Facebook group or via @PopRocket on Twitter.

Produced by Christian Dueñas and Kara Hart for MaximumFun.org.

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Lily Tomlin and Rick Moranis

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Lily Tomlin
Guests: 
Rick Moranis

[r]

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in iTunes or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.


Photo: Greg Gorman

Rick Moranis on growing up Jewish, Canadian comedy, and quitting showbusiness

This week on Bullseye, Jesse brings you some of his favorite interviews from 2013. The first of which is his conversation with Rick Moranis. You know him from Strange Brew, Ghostbusters, Spaceballs, Honey I Shrunk the Kids. He is the bespectacled man in argyle socks, who plays nerdy characters with goofy dad jokes. In the late 80's and early 90's, it seemed like he was the star of every family friendly comedy to hit the big screen. But, after his wife passed away in 1991, he quit the movie business, to raise his children. The last time he has been seen on screen was 20 years ago, in Honey We Shrunk Ourselves.

Nearly a decade after pretty much signing out of show business, Moranis returned in 2005 with a Grammy-winning album of original music, Agoraphobic Cowboy. In 2013, Moranis released his second album My Mother's Brisket and Other Love Songs, which is a collection of comedic music inspired by Moranis's Jewish upbringing in Toronto.

Jesse and Rick talk about his first job selling hockey programs in the nosebleed section, SCTV and the ironic outcome of his famous nose-thumbing at Canadian content laws, and his decision to be a stay-at-home father.

Click here to listen to Jesse's interview with Rick Moranis!

Lily Tomlin on being someone else... in her own way

Lily Tomlin is a comedic actress if there ever was one. She has incredible rang, whether she's playing a precocious six-year-old on Laugh-In or a pill-popping sixty-six year old on HBO's Eastbound & Down, Lily inhabits her roles in a way that few performers can. She was nominated for an Oscar for her 1976 performance in Nashville, as well as being awarded the Mark Twain Prize for humor back in 2003.

Back in 2013 when Jesse and Lily spoke, she had just appeared in the Tina Fey led and Paul Weitz directed movie Admission. This was 2 years before a resurgence in her career, which would earn her recognition in Grandma, her first lead in a film in 27 years, and a Golden Globe nomination for the Netflix series Grace and Frankie.

Lily talked to Jesse about shaping her role in Admission, the moment that she decided she wanted to be a professional actor...and yes, a certain YouTube-famous confrontation (link NSFW) with I Heart Huckabees director David O. Russell.

Click here to listen to Jesse's interview with Lily Tomlin!

The Outshot: Chance The Rapper's Acid Rap

Jesse tells us about Chance The Rapper's 2013 mixtape Acid Rap.

Click here to listen to Jesse's outshot about Acid Rap!

Bullseye With Jesse Thorn: Dolly Parton and Steve Coogan

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Dolly Parton
Guests: 
Steve Coogan

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in iTunes or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.


Dolly Parton on Business and Sacrifice

[r] This week, Jesse is sharing some of his favorite Bullseye interviews, the first of which is his conversation with Dolly Parton in 2012. Parton grew up poor in the mountains of Tennessee and was one of 12 children. She knew from a very young age that she wanted to be a singer, and when she turned 18, she moved to Nashville to follow that dream. Since then she has achieved every milestone a musician can in their career. She's won nine Grammy Awards, has has 25 hits topping the Billboard Country charts, and has even been nominated twice for an Academy Award.

Parton joins us this week to discuss some of these sacrifices, how they have affected her life, and how she feels about them now. She also shares stories from her childhood and relates the story behind one of her most well-loved songs, "I Will Always Love You."

Dolly's latest album Pure & Simple was released last year. She also is featured on a song on Kesha's new album Rainbow which drops August 11th.

Steve Coogan: "Dumping My Dysfunction" into Alan Partridge and Seeking Humanity in Comedy

The English actor, comedian and writer Steve Coogan got his start as a brilliant impressionist. He was beloved by audiences for his pitch-perfect impressions, and put his voice talent to good use on the satirical puppet show Spitting Image. But Coogan wanted more for himself, and began developing his own characters. While working on the radio current affairs parody On The Hour with Armando Iannucci and Chris Morris, he created his most enduring character to date -- the awkward, know-nothing sports desk reporter, Alan Partridge.

Coogan has now spent two decades off and on with Alan Partridge, as he's been fleshed out and moved from radio, to television, to film. He is also known for his The Trip series, which he films alongside fellow comedian Rob Brydon. He's won several awards throughout his career, notably a BAFTA for writing the screenplay for the 2014 Academy Award-nominated film Philomena.

He and Jesse spoke back in 2014. They talked about his early days as an impressionist, the increasing emotional complexity and dynamism of his character Alan Partridge, and seeking humanity in his comedy.

The third installment of the Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon The Trip series, The Trip to Spain is out August 11th.

The Outshot: Owney The Dog

Finally, Jesse takes us to our nation's capital, inside the National Postal Museum to learn about a taxidermied dog named Owney.

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