March 26th, 2009

Battlestar Galactica, w/guest Robert Thompson

In commemoration of the recent conclusion of the critically-acclaimed Battlestar Galactica television series, here is an interview I recorded with Robert Thompson near the end of 2006 covering all sorts of issues discussed on the show. We’ll be examining the political and religious themes depicted in the series, but don’t worry if you haven’t seen Battlestar; we’ll also be looking at the show in the context of larger pop-culture questions. What makes a show (i.e. the original BG) dated? Do some genres of fiction age more quickly than others? And why is science-fiction a particularly convenient medium through which to discuss societal issues? Robert Thompson is the founder of the Center for the Study of Popular Television at Syracuse University. [Originally broadcast on WLUW’s Under Surveillance in 2006.]

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March 11th, 2009

The Depiction of Wealth in Popular Culture, w/guest Leonard Pierce

One of the many “taglines” of America is that it is the “Land of Opportunity” where anyone can succeed… and above all, get rich. How has this impacted the depiction of wealth (and the desire for wealth) here in the United States in contrast to other parts of globe? How has television served as a snapshot of American propserity in each particular era, from shows such as All in the Family to The Cosby Show and Friends? And how have economic issues been depicted in futuristic utopias (like Star Trek) as well as dystopias? Returning as my guest is freelance writer and pop-culture critic Leonard Pierce, who blogs about film for Nerve.com’s Screengrab and whose commentary can be found at his website, ludickid.com. [Originally broadcast on WLUW’s Under Surveillance in March 2009.]

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Kevin Fullam is a writer and researcher, with extensive experience in fields ranging from sports analytics to politics and cinema.

In addition, he has hosted two long-running radio series on film and culture, and taught mass media at Loyola University.

Episodes of his two shows, Split Reel and Under Surveillance, are archived on the Radio page.