84 episodes

A ravenous pandemic. A ruinous recession. Protests, riots, racial strife, police brutality. And, of course, Donald Trump. The turmoil and upheaval roiling America in 2020 is the subject of Hell & High Water with John Heilemann. Through a series of conversations with the people shaping our culture — in politics, entertainment, business, technology, sports, food, and beyond — best-selling author and TV host John Heilemann (Game Change, Double Down, Showtime's The Circus) explores how the country is grappling with this apocalyptic moment and its existential stakes... and attempting to pull through and rise above it.
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Hell & High Water with John Heilemann itunesu_sunset

    • News
    • 4.8 • 3K Ratings

A ravenous pandemic. A ruinous recession. Protests, riots, racial strife, police brutality. And, of course, Donald Trump. The turmoil and upheaval roiling America in 2020 is the subject of Hell & High Water with John Heilemann. Through a series of conversations with the people shaping our culture — in politics, entertainment, business, technology, sports, food, and beyond — best-selling author and TV host John Heilemann (Game Change, Double Down, Showtime's The Circus) explores how the country is grappling with this apocalyptic moment and its existential stakes... and attempting to pull through and rise above it.
See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    Jeff Goldblum

    Jeff Goldblum

    In which John Heilemann talks with Jeff Goldblum, venerable and venerated actor, chart-topping jazz musician, and enigmatic cultural icon. From roles in star-making blockbusters Jurassic Park and Independence Day to revered performances in smaller films such as The Fly; from turns on network TV staples such as from Law & Order: Criminal Intent and Will & Grace to new streaming series such as Search Party; and from his late-life role as leader of The Mildred Snitzer Orchestra to his online ubiquity in Internet memes, Goldblum has one of the most diverse and beloved oeuvres of the past 50 years in American life. In this special episode, Heilemann and Goldblum discuss the state of Hollywood, the second season of The World According to Jeff Goldblum on Disney+, his side hustle as a jazz pianist, and why the 69-year-old believes he is (finally) peaking creatively.
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    • 1 hr 26 min
    Anne Applebaum and Brian Klaas

    Anne Applebaum and Brian Klaas

    In which John Heilemann talks with Anne Applebaum and Brian Klaas on the eve of the one-year anniversary of the January 6 insurrection. Applebaum, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and staff writer for The Atlantic, and Klaas, an associate professor at University College London and columnist for The Washington Post, are experts on the breakdown of democratic institutions and the rise of autocratic movements in America and around the world. Heilemann, Applebaum, and Klaas look back on what took place a year ago at the U.S. Capitol and what we know about it now; gauge the progress and prospects of the House Select Committee investigating those events; and assess what the potency of Donald Trump's Big Lie and the embrace of political violence on the right could portend for America’s increasingly fragile democracy. They also discuss Klaas’s new book, Corruptible: Who Gets Power and How It Changes Us, and Applebaum’s latest, Twilight of Democracy: The Seductive Lure of Authoritarianism.
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    • 1 hr 21 min
    LZ Granderson and Will Leitch

    LZ Granderson and Will Leitch

    In which John Heilemann talks with sports commentators and writers LZ Granderson and Will Leitch, co-hosts of The Long Game with LZ and Leitch, a new podcast from The Recount covering the intersection of sports, culture, and society. Looking back at the most consequential stories of 2021 on that terrain, the trio goes deep on Covid’s impact on the sports industrial complex; the groundbreaking stances of Simone Biles and Naomi Osaka with respect to mental health; and two high-profile film/tv projects (“King Richard” and “Colin in Black and White”) tackling race in sports. They also dive into LZ and Will’s personal biographies and the professional paths that brought them together as partners on The Long Game — which you can and should check out wherever you get your podcasts!
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    • 1 hr 14 min
    David Axelrod

    David Axelrod

    In which John Heilemann talks with David Axelrod, former senior White House adviser and top campaign strategist for Barack Obama, and currently director of the University of Chicago's Institute of Politics, senior political commentator for CNN, and host of The Axe Files podcast.
    As 2021 comes to an end, Heilemann and Axelrod sit down together in New York City for a look back at the year in politics, from the Biden administration’s successes and mishaps, Covid-19, the polarization and paralysis in Washington, and Donald Trump’s continued stranglehold on the Republican Party. Axelrod reminisces about his storied career as a political reporter, Democratic strategist, and architect of Barack Obama's rise to the White House. Looking ahead to 2022, Axelrod lays out what he sees as the greatest challenges ahead for Democrats — and American democracy.

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    • 1 hr 14 min
    Cecile Richards

    Cecile Richards

    In which John Heilemann talks with Cecile Richards, co-chair of the Democratic super PAC American Bridge 21st Century, co-founder of the women’s rights advocacy group Supermajority, and, from 2006 to 2018, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Heilemann and Richards discuss Roe v Wade's uncertain future in the wake of the recent Supreme Court arguments around restrictive abortion laws in Mississippi and Texas, and the effects that Roe's potential demise might have on women and politics in America; how Richards's mother, Ann, the former governor of Texas, propelled her towards a lifetime of activism; and how her broader agenda in favor of "women's equity" is faring in the Biden era.
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    • 1 hr 1 min
    Rep. Karen Bass

    Rep. Karen Bass

    In which John Heilemann talks with Karen Bass, the six-term California Democratic congresswoman, former speaker of the State Assembly, and current frontrunner in next year’s mayoral election in her home town of Los Angeles. Heilemann and Bass discuss the Omicron variant and the politics behind vaccine resistance in the US; Los Angeles’s homelessness crisis and why it’s the single most important issue motivating Bass to run for mayor; why her party’s messaging isn’t always resonating with voters; and her view that the Biden administration isn’t doing enough to fight for voting rights.
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    • 54 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
3K Ratings

3K Ratings

sptinggirl ,

GREAT

Definitely one of your best. Keep up the great work.

AlliKat777 ,

The quality you’d expect

I love John from the Circus so I had to give this a try and he’s just as entertaining on audio as he is on video. Great guests and some really great conversations.

Neilrx ,

Honest information

John has a great show and provides essential info in a very interesting and enjoyable way. Great on podcast and TV.

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