Want to know more about the early days of the video game industry? Wondering how Hello Kitty became so popular? Join Tracy and Holly as they explore the science behind pop culture in PopStuff, a podcast by HowStuffWorks.com.

Want to know more about the early days of the video game industry? Wondering how Hello Kitty became so popular? Join Tracy and Holly as they explore the science behind pop culture in PopStuff, a podcast by HowStuffWorks.com.
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Want to know more about the early days of the video game industry? Wondering how Hello Kitty became so popular? Join Tracy and Holly as they explore the science behind pop culture in PopStuff, a podcast by HowStuffWorks.com.




Greatest Hits: Perfume: The Culture of Scent

Have you ever wondered what Tracy and Holly smell like? They’ll tell you! They’re also eager to talk about how people use and perceive perfume, and why cottage-industry perfumeries attract such devoted followings.

Duration: 00:36:41

Greatest Hits: Nostalgia for the Good old Games

Both Tracy and Holly love new games, but they also fondly recall the early days of the video game industry. Take a trip down memory lane as talk turns to arcades, “Wreck-it Ralph” and why gamers get so attached to the titles.

Duration: 00:54:52

Greatest Hits: Zombies and Vampires and … where is this headed?

The entertainment market is saturated with supernatural creatures, but vampires and zombies seem to be the most popular, with werewolves coming in a close third. What will we be seeing the most of once the various iterations of the undead are played out?

Duration: 00:39:09

Greatest Hits: Hello Kitty and the Culture of Cute

You can get Hello Kitty everything. Everything. Tracy and Holly talk about the famous cat’s beginnings, staying power and her many Sanrio friends. Just how did a feline with no film or television origin get so popular in the first place?

Duration: 00:39:33

Greatest Hits: My Little Brony

Tracy and Holly are a little late to the “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” party, but now that they’ve started watching the show, they totally see the appeal. Tracy may even be a pegasister. But what makes the ponies so popular with male viewers?

Duration: 00:43:20

Greatest Hits: PopStuff's Cuppa Joe

PopStuff is addicted to coffee. This stimulant seems to have a stranglehold on humanity, and an entire culture has sprung up around it. Where does coffee actually come from, and why is our love affair with it so solid?

Duration: 00:54:55

Greatest Hits: Robots in Pop Culture

From Rosie to Bender and far beyond, robots have been a part of the media we consume for decades. Tracy and Holly talk about R2D2, Wall-E, Terminators and a host of other mechanical pals, trying to figure out why we love them so.

Duration: 00:44:46

Greatest Hits: PopStuff Doesn’t Believe the Hype

" Marketers often depend on hype to foster interest in a product, but sometimes, the hype machine backfires. Tracy and Holly talk about the hype cycle and hash out how it applies to tech, movies, music and other consumables."

Duration: 00:37:45

Greatest Hits: Why is this PopStuff stuck in my head?

Have you ever had a song stuck in your head? That’s an earworm, and it’s an extremely common phenomenon. Holly and Tracy wonder why our brains latch onto small pieces of information, how you get rid of them, and why it’s important to study this field.

Duration: 00:33:04

Greatest Hits: PopStuff Isn't Cool Enough to Be a Hipster

Hipster. The very word makes people sneer. Why are hipsters viewed with such disdain? And what makes a person a hipster, anyway? Tracy and Holly examine the history of the word “hipster,” as well as the various definitions of what a hipster is.

Duration: 00:33:43

Greatest Hits: Cooking With PopStuff

Bon appétit! There are more cooking shows on television than ever before, but it seems fewer and fewer people are actually prepping their own food. Has cooking become a spectator sport? Listen in to learn more.

Duration: 00:36:57

Greatest Hits: Internet, You So Crazy

We all know the Internet is awash with garbage, but there are also some hilarious and creative gems floating around the ether. When Tracy and Holly separate the wheat from the chaff, what Web memes and other delights do they fall in love with?

Duration: 00:31:12

Greatest Hits: Weddings

Love them or hate them, weddings are a part of our lives. But why are they so expensive, and why does everyone feel entitled to judge everyone else’s nuptials?

Duration: 00:40:23

Greatest Hits: The Culture of Running

Running continues to grow in popularity, but are all runners happy about that? Holly and Tracy talk about their experiences at races, their training, their gear and yes, their injuries, all while debating the merits of this hobby/sport/fitness regimen.

Duration: 00:53:02

Greatest Hits: Bugs vs. Mickey

One’s a wisecracking rabbit and the other’s a giggling mouse. Both have devoted fans. How did these famous animated rodents get their starts and nestle into their niches, and why has only one reached juggernaut status?

Duration: 00:35:00

Greatest Hits: Manic Pixie Dreamgirls

She’s quirky, nutty and totally unfettered. She shows brooding screen heroes that life is full of fun and wonder. She’s Manic Pixie Dream Girl, and her roots as a cinema archetype go back further than you probably suspect.

Duration: 00:30:50

Greatest Hits: Wanna go to prom?

It’s exciting, it’s a rite of passage, it’s expensive and often a letdown. Few people look back on their proms and think “That was one of the greatest nights of my life!” Tracy and Holly relay memories of their proms and the origins of this tradition.

Duration: 00:36:34

Greatest Hits: Drag Queens

Glittery, glamorous drag queens – Holly and Tracy love them. But what is drag, exactly? What social trends cause the popularity of queens to wax and wane? And why do straight girls love RuPaul and his tribe so much?

Duration: 00:32:04

Greatest Hits: Did movies ruin love?

Do you believe in love at first sight? How about soul mates? Movies and TV shows certainly seem to. Holly and Tracy talk about whether movies are setting us up for failed romance, and about Tracy's complicated relationship with the romantic comedy.

Duration: 00:40:06

Why are we friends?

Most of your friends probably like the same things you do and have similar views on religion and politics. In this episode, Tracy and Holly discuss the benefits and challenges of diversifying your pal portfolio, and why sloganism is bad.

Duration: 00:27:07

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