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I Think You're Interesting

I Think You’re Interesting is a weekly interview podcast hosted by Vox critic at large Todd VanDerWerff, featuring both well-known and more obscure figures from the worlds of the arts, entertainment, and pop culture. Each week, guests will dive into...

I Think You’re Interesting is a weekly interview podcast hosted by Vox critic at large Todd VanDerWerff, featuring both well-known and more obscure figures from the worlds of the arts, entertainment, and pop culture. Each week, guests will dive into their influences, their inspirations, and their careers, in frank, uncensored fashion.

I Think You’re Interesting is a weekly interview podcast hosted by Vox critic at large Todd VanDerWerff, featuring both well-known and more obscure figures from the worlds of the arts, entertainment, and pop culture. Each week, guests will dive into their influences, their inspirations, and their careers, in frank, uncensored fashion.
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I Think You’re Interesting is a weekly interview podcast hosted by Vox critic at large Todd VanDerWerff, featuring both well-known and more obscure figures from the worlds of the arts, entertainment, and pop culture. Each week, guests will dive into their influences, their inspirations, and their careers, in frank, uncensored fashion.




Bill Nye, on becoming the Science Guy and Saving the World

If you don't hear the words "Bill Nye" and automatically fill in, mentally, "the Science Guy" (ideally with the exact right tune and rhythm from his old theme song), then you probably weren't alive during the 1990s, when Nye's series (Bill Nye the Science Guy, naturally) became a hit with kids, parents, and teachers throughout the country. A former engineer and stand-up comedian, Nye's ability to blend introductions to scientific concepts with goofy humor made him a favorite. Since that...


Designing the worst workplace in the world. (Only for a TV show. Don’t worry.)

Comedy Central’s Corporate is a deep, dark dive into American corporate life that is one of the most promising new comedies to debut in years. Set in the nondescript but completely soulless corporation Hampton DeVille, Corporate finds dark yet incredibly funny humor in the concept of just trying to survive within the sorts of corporate structures many of us work in every single day. The series was co-created by Matt Ingebretson and Jake Weisman (with series director Pat Bishop), and...


The "I Think You’re Interesting" Oscars Spectacular

Todd loves the Oscars, so this week's episode features not just one but two Oscar nominees from this year's crop. First, Todd talks with Vox film critic Alissa Wilkinson about the year's biggest prizes. Then he's joined by Julian Slater, the Oscar-nominated sound designer and sound editor of the action-musical Baby Driver. Julian tells Todd all about crafting the sonic world of one of 2017's most ambitious aural experiments, then he explains the difference between the Sound Mixing and...


Bonus: Today, Explained. "Black Panther Is the Most Important Movie of 2018"

Our Bonus episode today is a new show from Vox.com called Today Explained, which comes out Monday through Friday. It's going to tell you all about what happened in the news that maybe you didn't know about. It's got a great team of people working on it, and I wanted you to get a chance to listen to one of their first episodes. So here's Today, Explained's edition from earlier this week, all about the movie Black Panther (which we covered this week in our episode with the movie's costume...


Love the look of Black Panther's Wakanda? Meet the woman who designed its costumes.

If you've seen Marvel's new movie Black Panther, you know that one of the best things about it is its use of costumes and sets not just to create the fictional world of Wakanda, but also to tell little stories about its history and culture in every single frame. Just looking at this movie, which opened to the second-biggest four-day box office in film history, is half the fun. That's why for the first episode in a post-Black Panther world, we wanted to talk to Ruth Carter, the designer of...


Finding work — or just creating your own — as a deaf actor in Hollywood

Though 20 percent of the American population has some form of disability, just 2 percent of working actors represent that population on screen and stage. Is it any wonder so many roles for those with disabilities are played by actors without them? And is it any wonder that this discrepancy is causing more and more controversy and discussion? That's what makes the new Sundance Now series This Close so interesting. It's the first show in American television history to be created and showrun...


Bonus: The Podium, from the Vox Media Podcast Network and NBC Sports

Opening Ceremony co-host Katie Couric discusses what to expect from the broadcast (8:30 ET, NBC), the unified team of North and South Korea, and her interview with figure skating star Nathan Chen. We'll also take a look back at some pivotal moments in Olympic history and how the Winter Games have evolved from 1924 to today.


"Narnia was not up to code": The Magicians' Lev Grossman on building fantastical worlds

Few fantasy series of the past 10 years have had the reach of Lev Grossman's Magicians trilogy, beginning with The Magicians in 2009, continuing with The Magician King in 2011, and concluding with The Magician's Land in 2014. The books, which attempted to blend the fantastical elements of books like Harry Potter and the Narnia series, garnered warm reviews (including from Todd), then were quickly scooped up to be turned into a TV series before the books had even completed the publication...


Justina Machado is giving one of TV's best performances. Here's her acting advice.

"I have people that are not Latino arguing with me about what we’re like," Justina Machado says about two-thirds of the way through her chat with Todd. The actress, who joins ITYI to talk about the latest season of her Netflix sitcom One Day at a Time, has been giving superlative performances for two decades now, with a career that encompasses everything from the live episode of ER to an Arsenio Hall sitcom to the classic HBO drama Six Feet Under. But it's One Day at a Time that has given...


How Hans Zimmer found the music of the ocean

Blue Planet II is one of the most stunning visual achievements of the year. The new BBC America nature documentary takes viewers deep beneath the waves to observe strange creatures and the delicate balance that keeps the world's largest habitat in harmony. The miniseries is also a huge sonic accomplishment in representing the sounds of the sea. Crackling icebergs, creatures scuttling along the seafloor, and water washing along — they all contribute to a show that sounds like nothing else....


The best film and TV performances of 2017, according to our critics panel

Awards season is once again upon us. We’ll soon know which films and performances have been nominated for the Oscars, and the Golden Globes are receding into the past. But let’s talk about what’s really important: Which performances from 2017 did our panel of critics like most? Todd is joined by Vox film critic Alissa Wilkinson and Buzzfeed’s Alison Willmore to discuss their favorites. The list (across film and television) is wide-ranging, from Star Wars: The Last Jedi to the little-seen...


Phil Rosenthal created Everybody Loves Raymond. Now he hosts a food and travel show. Can we have his life?

Phil Rosenthal is one of Todd’s favorite people within the TV industry to talk to, because he loves making television — whether he’s writing it or starring in it. He's probably best known for creating the Emmy-winning series Everybody Loves Raymond, starring Ray Romano. The show ran for nine seasons, winning the Emmy for Best Comedy Series twice, and it has gone on to a healthy life in reruns. Rosenthal spent several years after Raymond left the air creating new sitcom pilots, translating...


Ask Todd Anything, with guest host Caroline Framke

It's a very special episode of I Think You're Interesting, as guest host and Vox culture writer Caroline Framke asks Todd all the questions you asked about criticism, great TV, and life itself. Along the way, they'll discuss whether Todd can possibly watch TV just for fun anymore, what it's like working with an editor, and what his favorite TV show of all time is. Stick around for Todd's answers to the same questions he asks his guests in other episodes!


Is the secret to battling climate change a better promotional strategy?

The ways climate change is altering our planet can be hard to see, since they happen so incrementally, and often far away. That’s what’s made the documentaries Chasing Ice and Chasing Coral (a finalist for Best Documentary Feature at the 2018 Oscars) so valuable. The former tracks shrinking glaciers, while the latter shows the devastating die-offs of coral reefs, all thanks to the planet’s rapidly warming atmosphere. But Richard Vevers, a former advertising expert who's one of the main...


What happened in Hollywood in 2017 — and where it might go in 2018

From the Oscars mixup to the Disney-Fox deal, and from Netflix’s continuing inability to launch major movie hits to the seemingly endless stream of sexual misconduct revelations, 2017 was a big year for entertainment news, arguably the biggest in decades. Every new week brought a new story with the potential to alter the industry in incalculable ways. It was such a big year that a near-strike by the Writers Guild of America ended up being a footnote. Covering all of it was Richard...


Bonus: The writing life of Pulitzer Prize-nominated novelist Chang Rae Lee

Chang Rae Lee’s books include “Native Speaker,” “Aloft,” and “The Surrender,” for which he was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in Fiction. His most recent book is “On Such A Full Sea,” a cool, sci-fi dystopia. It was published in 2014. His novels tackle some of the most important themes in American life today, including immigration, life after war, and even the divided Korean Peninsula. Lee was born in Seoul, South Korea, but moved to the U.S. with his family at the age of three. His home...


How 2017's best animated film came to be

Director Nora Twomey and her colleagues at Ireland’s Cartoon Saloon have made a habit of turning out some of Todd’s favorite animated films. From 2009’s The Secret of Kells to 2014’s Song of the Sea, the mini-studio makes beautiful, evocative films about the need for storytelling and the hard-earned magic of growing up. The company’s latest film — Twomey’s debut as sole credited director — is called The Breadwinner, and it traces the story of a young Afghan girl who is forced to take on the...


John Ridley, Oscar-winning screenwriter, on how Los Angeles has and hasn’t changed since Rodney King

John Ridley has been active in Hollywood since the early ’90s, to the degree that he wrote for one of the best obscure sitcoms of that era, The John Laroquette Show. But his career hit turbo speed when he wrote the script for the 2013 Best Picture winner 12 Years a Slave, for which he received an Oscar for his screenplay. Since then, he’s written even more movies and produced American Crime, a three-season ABC series that dug into political and social issues with real nuance and depth, in a...


Exploring the role of religion in the Trump era with Matt Carter, co-host of the Bad Christian podcast

Few religion podcasts have proved as vital to understanding evangelical Christian America in the Donald Trump era as Bad Christian, a podcast hosted by three friends, who all used to be in a band together. (Two of them still are in that band.) Hosts Matt Carter, Toby Morrell, and Joey Svendsen, all Christians, discuss their issues with the modern church, without flinching. They also reveal their personal journeys as believers, which serve as real-time markers of individual Christians’...


Holly Hunter, Kumail Nanjiani, Ray Romano, and Emily V. Gordon talk about their movie The Big Sick

The Big Sick is a little slice of romantic comedy perfection and one of 2017's best movies. Based on a very real story from the life of very real couple Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon, the movie boasts a script by the two, with Holly Hunter and Ray Romano, two real acting heavyweights, joining them as Emily's parents. The Big Sick manages something too few movies do nowadays. As you watch it, you might find yourself hoping that everybody in it will end up happy and more or less okay,...


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