This week’s Canadian Thanksgiving installment features follow-ups on several topics from past episodes: Are the most important pop culture figures of the last quarter of the 20th century all named “David”? Why is contemporary art so abundant with creativity and so full of joy? What are some of the most thrilling aspects of Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah, Georgia? And speaking of Savannah, why is The Pirate House so darn haunting? In addition to those follow-ups, Phil has been researching “Trainee” programs offered by the Writer’s Guild in the wake of their (tentative) deal with the producers. And a loyal listener has thoughts about the best/worst actors to play Hercule Poirot on the big screen. This last leads into Dean’s thoughts about Kenneth Branagh’s A Haunting in Venice before three films starring the great Dirk Bogarde, the soulfulness of Oliver Reed and a brilliant, unheralded masterpiece by the late William Friedkin all get discussed. Finally, in “Celebrity Deaths”, a beloved star of “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” (and “NCIS”) gets remembered.
After a cold open about the founder of Hollywood’s Magic Castle and about the greatest professional football player of all time, this week’s show gets started with Dean discussing upcoming “X-Files” convention appearances. And, thanks to an email from a loyal listener like you (yes, YOU!), Dean will share one of the most hilarious behind-the-scenes stories about the making of “The X-Files”. Another email from friend of the show Maurice Terenzio might just be the funniest Dean and Phil have ever received! It will get shared in all its glory. Movies are foremost on Phil’s mind this week and such titles as Armageddon Time, Renfield and the documentary Lynch/Oz will get discussed, as will a wonderful comedy-horror film called Evil Sublet. The current SAG-AFTRA negotiations with the producers will get touched upon as those negotiations relate to the “Salkind clause”, AI, and soap operas.
This week’s show begins with a cold open wherein Dean and Phil discuss Phil’s 4th wedding anniversary, 100 years of Disney, and 16 years of Chillpak, while also celebrating the life and cultural legacy of Burt Bacharach. Dean then reveals his plans to see 80 for Brady (!) before he and Phil compare notes on Pearl, the sequel to X. Phil then sings the praises of a little-known noir-ish detective story starring Lucille Ball and directed by Douglas Sirk, and the jazzy 1966 exercise in style, Tokyo Drifter. After that, it’s time to open the Chillpak morgue for a handful of truly fascinating “Celebrity Deaths” as screen icon Raquel Welch, Award-winning director Hugh Hudson, former child star Austin Majors, and one of the greatest production designers of all time, Eugene Lee, get remembered.
From the inner space of quiet, self-quarantine lockdowns, to the outer space of “Star Trek: Picard”, Dean Haglund and Phil Leirness take you on quite the journey this week! It starts with their latest observations about themselves and others in the wake of another week of isolation. Sadness, quiet and dehumanization are on the thematic menu! They then compare notes on their respective Easter celebrations, which leads to a discussion of a couple of classic musicals: 1934’s Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers vehicle The Gay Divorcee and 1948’s seasonal staple Easter Parade, starring Astaire and Judy Garland. The recent, modern classic, Uncut Gems gets championed by Phil, who tries to get Dean to overcome his trepidation surrounding Adam Sandler performances (and yet, Dean once championed You Don’t Mess With the Zohan, so go figure!). The second half of the show consists of Dean and Phil comparing the years in cinema 1973 and 1974, discussing all the notable films from those two halcyon years, in hopes of determining which year might challenge 1962 as the greatest year in cinema. Finally, your friends in podcasting beam up to the La Sirena to discuss and debate what went right and what went wrong in season one of “Star Trek: Picard”, a show so successful that a big-screen movie version is already in the planning stages.