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Stories about the books, movies, tv, music and more that have changed the lives of gay men. Subscribe now for a new interviews, clips, and conversations every Thursday!

Stories about the books, movies, tv, music and more that have changed the lives of gay men. Subscribe now for a new interviews, clips, and conversations every Thursday!
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Stories about the books, movies, tv, music and more that have changed the lives of gay men. Subscribe now for a new interviews, clips, and conversations every Thursday!




Vampire Drag Queens (Ep. 165 - Marilyn Manson)

This Week's Guest: Evan J. Peterson What's the difference between confidence and arrogance? My guest this week is Evan Peterson, author of the memoir The PrEP Diaries. For years, he trained himself to be aggressive, aloof, above it all, as a way to pre-empt criticism. That meant erecting masks and disguises, from gothic costumes to club-kid confusion. But what was missing behind his ostentatious displays for others was confidence in himself -- something Evan's still reaching for as he...


I Don't Have Any Shame in my Game (Ep. 164 - Aydian Dowling)

Special Guest: Aydian Dowling Hello, and welcome to a bonus episode of The Sewers of Paris! Thanks to the support of everyone on Patreon, I'm able to bring you extra episodes with guests beyond just gay men. This month, we're going beyond the Sewers with a very special guest: Aydian Dowling, the first trans man to appear on the cover of Men's Health. You might know him as the physically fit model who appeared on a special cover of Men's Health a few years ago. Aydian Dowling's made a habit...


The Wrong Kind of Gay (Ep. 163 - Jem and the Holograms)

This Week's Guest: Drew Mackie My guest this week is Drew Mackie. You might know him from the podcasts Gayest Episode Ever, or Singing Mountain, or We Are Not Young Anymore. The point is that he does a lot of podcasts, generally about the art & entertainment that makes the world a more joyful place. It's a long way from where he started his career, as a hard journalist covering a quadruple murder in his college town. For years, he did the serious work that he thought was expected of him,...


Zombies, Witches, and Talking Dolls (Ep. 162 - Passions)

This Week's Guest: Ira Madison Why is villainy so much fun? Whether it's cackling Emperor Palpatine or Joan Collings smirking smugly on Dynasty, bad guys invariably seem to be having such a good time ... and it can be hard to resist wanting to join them. My guest this week is Ira Madison, culture writer for The Daily Beast and co-host of the Keep It podcast. As a kid, he was quick to notice that the most fun part of his favorite soap operas were the over-the-top scene-chewing scoundrels....


Evil Glamour (Ep. 161 - Anime & Maleficent)

This Week's Guest: Justin Saint Is there some secret to turning pain into art? My guest this week is Justin Saint, whose artistic expression takes the form of makeup and cosplay. Justin's chosen medium involves costumes and disguises, but behind those beautiful facades are some struggles that are still pretty tender: periods of homelessness, parents setting his creative works on fire, and a relationship that nearly drove him past a point of no return. Now he's back on his feet and leading...


People Who Have Real Magic (Ep. 160 - Dune)

This Week's Guest: Ryan Kendall We often talk on this show about escape, and it’s usually with the assumption that having an escape is a good thing. But there can be consequences to leaving the world you've always known behind -- even when that world is actively causing you harm. My guest this week is Ryan Kendall, whose parents subjected him to devastating homophobia, and dangerous "ex-gay" abuse. After Ryan legally emancipated himself from his parents, what followed was a period of...


The Monster I Have to Beat (Ep. 159 - JP Brammer)

This Week's Guest: JP Brammer How do you forgive someone who won't, or can't, apologize? My guest this week is JP Brammer, who dispenses advice in the column Hola Papi on Grindr's news site Into. JP's made a name for himself by providing thoughtful insights into living your best gay life, but his understanding of life and love didn't just spring into existence fully formed. It's the product of some pain, some forgiveness, and a college club that he really hoped would present more...


Like Getting Struck by Lightning (Ep. 158 - The Twist Queer Film Festival)

Special Guests! Jay Bell, Grant Davis, Carlos Pedraza, Joe Appelbaum, and Stu Maddox Welcome to a special bonus episode of The Sewers of Paris! On most episodes, I talk to a guest about the entertainment that changed their life. But tonight I'm speaking to five guests who create entertainment that they hope will change the lives of others. I recorded these interviews at Twist, Seattle's LGBT film festival. You'll hear from folks involved in two projects that screened at the festival: the...


Sign me up to be Stupid (Ep. 157 - Professional Wrestling)

This Week's Guest: Pollo Del Mar For most of us, it's fun to speculate about the drag character we have hidden within. But what do you do if you've got multiple characters kicking around inside you -- and you suspect they might not get along with each other? This week's guest is Pollo Del Mar, who is both a drag queen and a professional wrestler. It took a long time for her to get comfortable making those worlds overlap -- and there were times that she had to call out other wrestlers for...


The Moment Where I Lost It (Ep. 156 - E.T.)

This week's guest: Andrew Putschoegl Were you a free range kid? If you were lucky enough to survive growing up pre-2000, you were probably allowed to spend a lot of time outdoors on your own with little to no structured time. My guest this week is Andrew Putschoegl, whose childhood mirrored that of 80s movies where groups of weird neighborhood kids are thrown together by simply because they live in the same suburb. In those film, each kid tends to have one strange trait that sets them...


Excited and Scared (Ep. 155 - Ari Shapiro of NPR's All Things Considered)

This Week's Guest: Ari Shapiro My guest this week is Ari Shapiro, host of All Things Considered. These days, he tells other people's stories on NPR, but his own story was considerably is more winding than you might expect -- behind his calm journalistic voice is a man who spent some time as an illegal immigrant, who carried mace for protection in high school, who nearly became an actor, and who might never have found his place on the radio if a gay icon hadn't intervened on his...


Crazy Pirate Madonna (Ep. 154 - Tori Amos)

Beyond the Sewers of Paris with Cindy Howes Thanks to everyone supporting The Sewers of Paris on Patreon, I'm able to bring you bonus episodes every month. We're going to go Beyond the Sewers of Paris, with special guests beyond just gay men, and deep-dives on topics I think you're going to love. This month, I'm bringing you an unusual conversation with a very special guest: radio DJ Cindy Howes. I first interviewed Cindy about a year ago, for what I thought would be a fun, lighthearted...


It Was Deeply Weird (Ep. 152 - Cats)

This Week's Guest: Tyler Coates Have you ever found a monster beautiful? It's rare that something can be both gorgeous and grotesque, but when those two qualities overlap it can be hard to look away -- and hard to resist following it wherever it wants to take you, no matter how dangerous. This week's guest is Tyler Coates, Culture Editor at He felt the allure of the arts emanating from what seemed like a threat: phantoms in an opera house, clawing cat people, and David Bowie...


The Kentucky Derby for People (Ep. 151 - Drag Race)

This Week's Guest: Alberto Davalos What would you do if your life's work turned out to be killing you? My guest this week is Alberto Davalos, a horse boy. His whole life he expected to work with horses. And fresh out of college, he was on a farm in Kentucky, wearing gloves up to his shoulders and helping multi-million-dollar animals give birth. But working his dream job came with a price he wasn't ready to pay. We'll have that conversation in a minute -- but first, a reminder that as of...


Hot Glue and Rhinestones (Ep. 150 - Chi Chi DeVayne)

This Week's Guest: Chi Chi DeVayne My guest this week is Chi Chi Devayne, who competed on Season 8 of Drag Race and is appearing now on All Stars Season 3. Despite having competed -- twice, now -- on the world's most prestigious drag show, there was a time when Chi Chi hated drag. That was before she realized that everything in life had prepared her to perform in heels -- from church to getting in fights to military training. We'll have that conversation in a minute -- but first, a...


On Top of Mount Sodom (Ep. 146 - The Dead Poets Society)

This Week's Guest: Jay Michaelson This show is supported by listeners who pledge a dollar or more per episode on Patreon. Huge thanks to everyone who makes the show possible! We're coming up on a new year -- what are you going to change in 2018? My guest this week is Jay Michaelson, who several years ago found himself unhappy, unfulfilled, and disconnected from meaningful relationships, both with other people and with a higher power. So he decided to stop waiting for the life he wanted,...


The 2017 Sewers of Paris Holiday Special Special

Hello and welcome to the Sewers of Paris Holiday Special Special! In the spirit of the season, I've invited some guests, past and future, to share with us their favorite seasonal entertainment. We'll have an appreciation of Batman Returns from Anthony Oliveira, aka @meakoopa. There's a tribute to Snow Miser from Glen Weldon of NPR's Pop Culture Happy Hour. Performance artist Johnnie Jungleguts will explain why Eyes Wide Shut is his favorite Christmas movie. Carlos Maza from will...


Nothing Went Fine (Ep. 144 - Les Miserables)

This Week's Guest: Michael Blutrich According to the FBI, my guest this week was involved in one of the largest fraud schemes in history -- the nearly half-billion dollar failure of the National Heritage Life Insurance Company, which had 26,000 elderly policyholders. While Michael Blutrich was involved in the insurance scheme, he was also running a strip club called Scores that had mafia ties, and he secretly recorded conversations that helped the government convict numerous organized...


Surrounded by Death and Drugs (Ep. 143 - Sina Grace & Iceman)

This Week's Guest: Sina Grace My guest this week set out to answer a simple question: how do you live a content life? Sina Grace is the comic author and illustrator behind autobiographical books like Self-Obsessed, and Marvel's current Iceman series. A few years ago, he reached a point of disillusionment with the American dream, discovering getting all the money and possessions you wanted isn't as fulfilling as family, health, and love. Isolated and literally wasting away, Sina set in...


A Britney-Whitney Gay (Ep. 141 - Best Little Whorehouse in Texas)

This Week's Guest: Emerson Collins When it's hard to find the words you know you need to say, can you use someone else's? This week's guest is actor and producer Emerson Collins, whose new film A Very Sordid Wedding is a sequel to the classic Sordid Lives. Growing up around the big hair and church bells of Texas, Emerson struggled to speak openly about who he really was. Until he got up on stage. Big thanks to everyone supporting the Sewers of Paris on Patreon. I could not make the show...


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