A cold open about a … melon festival (?!) … inspires a story about racial hostility in Turlock in the early 20th century. From there, Phil is inspired to pick up on a brilliant observation Dean made last week about Mike Nichols’ Working Girl and apply that observation as a potential thru-line for this celebrated director’s career. Alec Baldwin gets into hot water for tweeting support for Anne Heche and Salman Rushdie gets stabbed on-stage right before hailing the USA as the last bastion of freedom of speech. Dean and Phil try to make sense of both of these events. The return of “What We’re Reading” sees Dean learning how to sketch people’s hands and Phil learning what the next World War will be like! In “Celebrity Deaths”, a good friend and frequent collaborator of Stanley Kubrick, a popular and inspiring painter, a legendary French movie star, and the composer of one of the most indelible theme songs of all time all get remembered. Finally, Dean and Phil discuss the finely-tuned instincts Marlon Brando possessed as a great entertainer, and Phil hails the allegorical storytelling on display in Jordan Peele’s Nope.
On this week’s show, Dean shares with Phil his jury duty “cheat code”, Phil shares with Dean fascinating historic facts and rumored hauntings surrounding the town of Turlock, and they discuss another David Lynch-Mark Frost television collaboration from the late 1980s, and this one was supposed to star Steve Martin and Martin Short! Speaking of those comedy greats, their co-star from “Only Murders in the Building” has a new movie in development, a remake of a 1980s classic. Dean and Phil discuss it and they analyze the ever-shifting landscape in the battle between theatrical movie-going and streaming releases, a battle that movie theaters seem to be winning. A terrible new Netflix movie gets discussed as does the rather spotty track record of its celebrated directors. Other topics covered include “Better Call Saul”, the casting of Bullet Train and Craig Kilborn’s new podcast. Finally, in “Celebrity Deaths”, three trailblazers get remembered: Pat Carroll, Bill Russell and Nichelle Nichols.