179 episodes

Vox Populorum is a blog and podcast devoted to pop culture criticism. We believe that the best way to understand culture is to discuss it. But we also believe that it's a lot more fun to have these conversations throwing back a couple beers at the bar rather than in a classroom. Please join our weekly round table of media critics, academics, creators, artists, professors, students and fans for an engaging discussion about movies, novels, comic books, television, video games, music or whatever else we happen to think of!



Nec audiendi qui solent dicere, Vox populi, vox Dei, quum tumultuositas vulgi semper insaniae proxima sit.

The VoxPopcast Vox Populorum

    • Society & Culture
    • 5.0 • 33 Ratings

Vox Populorum is a blog and podcast devoted to pop culture criticism. We believe that the best way to understand culture is to discuss it. But we also believe that it's a lot more fun to have these conversations throwing back a couple beers at the bar rather than in a classroom. Please join our weekly round table of media critics, academics, creators, artists, professors, students and fans for an engaging discussion about movies, novels, comic books, television, video games, music or whatever else we happen to think of!



Nec audiendi qui solent dicere, Vox populi, vox Dei, quum tumultuositas vulgi semper insaniae proxima sit.

    ImproveReality?

    ImproveReality?

    Several weeks ago, we did a show on how stand-up comedy works in the middle of a pandemic. We talked about the transition that comedians went through to move a traditionally “in-person” art form to an entirely virtual environment. But what about other art forms? Lots of performances that at least seem to “require” a physical presence of some kind. What happens if you rethink that from the ground up? On today’s show, Monica and Mav are joined by improv comedy actress and director Cheryl Platz. Cheryl is directing Cupid on Mute, an improv series designed around a fictional reality dating show running on Twitch. Join us as we discuss the challenges she faced from both technical and creative standpoints. What does it take to make a fake reality show believable? What does it take to move an improv comedy series online? Is there a difference between improv and just being into role playing games? How do the skills of both translate into a career deigning video games? Yeah… that comes up too… somehow. Cheryl tells us about her experiences and we talk about what we can learn from both improv shows AND reality shows. Listen and let us know your thoughts on… uh… ImproveReality?







    Citations and Links:







    * This episode’s Call for Comments* Unexpected Productions: Seattle’s longest running improv theater* Watch Cupid on Mute and other shows from Unexpected Productions on TwitchTV







    * Thank you to Maximilian’s thoughtForm Music for our theme* Follow Cheryl’s website: http://cherylplatz.com* Follow Cheryl on Twitter: @FunnyGodmother* Follow Mav on Twitter: @chrismaverick* Follow Monica on Instagram: @monicamarvelous* Follow us on Twitter: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Instagram: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Facebook: http://facebook.com/voxpopcast* Please Subscribe to our new YouTube channel!* Make sure you subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify or wherever podcasts are found and please leave us a review!

    Pop History vs. Public History

    Pop History vs. Public History

    How do we learn history? The easy answer is to say we learn it from history books, but is that true? How many of us ever read a history book after 10th grade? It’s more likely that we get the majority of our history either from museums or from historic entertainment… things like Hamilton… or, perhaps you get your history from a place that is a combination of the two… living museums like Colonial Williamsburg. In a sense, there’s a split between public history and popular history. But what does that even mean? Is one better than the other? How do they inform each other? On this week’s episode, Monica, Mav and Wayne are joined by public historian and living history performer Emily Doherty to talk all about the split between the two, how we use history as entertainment and how we as readers and viewers take in the historical entertainment we consume. Listen and let us know your thoughts in the comments.







    Citations and Links:







    * This episode’s Call for Comments* Wayne’s search for the books of his childhood, Part 1* Wayne’s search for the books of his childhood, Part 2* The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper by Hallie Rubenhold* Order Chutz-Pow! from the Pittsburgh Holocaust Center* All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness* “Hear My Voice” by Nicole Trifone







    * Thank you to Maximilian’s thoughtForm Music for our theme* Follow Emily on Instagram: @vintagedreaming1776* Follow Mav on Twitter: @chrismaverick* Follow Wayne on Instagram: @tetroc2017* Follow Monica on Instagram: @monicamarvelous* Follow Mav’s Personal Blog: http://chrismaverick.com* Follow Wayne’s Personal Blog: http://wayne-wise.com* Follow us on Twitter: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Instagram: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Facebook: http://facebook.com/voxpopcast* Please Subscribe to our new YouTube channel!* Make sure you subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher,

    Deconstructing the Chair

    Deconstructing the Chair

    It’s been a while since we devoted a whole episode to one TV show. We’ve done it with a couple of the Marvel shows as well as stuff like Game of Thrones and Watchmen. We did a show on the Queen’s Gambit, and we loved Bridgerton enough to do TWO episodes on it. We talked about the Good Place and of course, one of our earliest episodes was about Riverdale, the best show on television. We certainly can’t devote episodes to every show we watch… mostly because we watch a LOT of television. But every once in a while a show comes up that definitely deserves the kind of pseudo-academic pop culture analysis with drinking and swearing that we do here. And if there’s a show about academics in a literature department… well, that was obviously something we had to address. If you’re an academic, particularly one in an English department in America, you already know that we’re talking about Netflix’s The Chair, which premiered last week. If you’re not an academic… well, there’s a decent chance that you’ve never actually heard of it. So, on this episode, Hannah, Wayne, Katya and Mav are joined by Kathy Newman and returning guest Natalie Sheppard-Baudean to talk about Deconstructing the Chair! So listen and let us know what you think. If you’ve seen the show, do you agree with us. If you’ve not seen the show, have you even heard of it? In fact, even if you haven’t seen the show, let us know your take on our analysis in the comments. We’re certainly curious.







    Citations and Links:







    * This episode’s Call for Comments* “The Harvard PhD Turned Screenwriter Behind Netflix’s Hit ‘The Chair’” by Alison Herman* “Practicing the Equitable, Transformative Pedagogy We Preach” by Cathy N. Davidson and Shelly Eversley







    * Thank you to Maximilian’s thoughtForm Music for our theme* Read Natalie’s chapter on The Magicians in The New Witches: Critical Essays on 21st Century Television Portrayals* Follow Hannah on Twitter: @hannahleerogers* Follow Mav on Twitter: @chrismaverick* Follow Katya on Ins...

    What Was Social Networking?

    What Was Social Networking?

    Instagram recently made an announcement that they were going to be shifting their social networking focus away from “photos”. This decision prompted a collective “WTF?” from the users who saw it. You see, Instagram claims that their primary business isn’t photos (despite having a whole motif from their logo to their name based around polaroid photos) but instead providing entertainment. Of course, what many suspect really happened is that they saw how popular TikTok is getting and got spooked. If you’re a regular user of Instagram, you’ve no doubt noticed an increasing focus on video content as the site tries to compete. Similarly, YouTube and Facebook have recently started trying to focus on short video clips as well in an effort to copy (and crush) TikTok as the current belle of the ball. All the while, each site seems to be adding more and more advertising and caring less and less for the users they supposedly serve. Or do they? On today’s show Katya, Mav and Monica are joined by model Dane Halo to talk about the changing face of Instagram and what previous failed social networks networks can tell us about its future. Is social networking dying or is it a necessary evil? Listen and let us know if you agree in the comments.







    Citations and Links:







    * This episode’s Call for Comments* Dane Halo’s Modeling Site* Rose Glass Photography







    * Thank you to Maximilian’s thoughtForm Music for our theme* Follow Dane on Instagram: @theredbomb_model* Follow Mav on Twitter: @chrismaverick* Follow Katya on Instagram: @justthatnerdkid* Follow Monica on Instagram: @monicamarvelous* Follow us on Twitter: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Instagram: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Facebook: http://facebook.com/voxpopcast* Please Subscribe to our new YouTube channel!* Make sure you subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify or wherever podcasts are found and please leave us a review!

    • 1 hr 19 min
    Game Studies: Ludology vs. Narratology

    Game Studies: Ludology vs. Narratology

    We don’t talk about games as much as we should on this show, but arguably they’re one of the most enduring mediums of popular culture. They’re certainly one of the most popular. There’s much comparison of modern video games to movies. This makes sense… if we want people to consider games to be a legitimate literary form, it stands to reason that we would compare them to an accepted literary form. But games are also unique in many ways. From the most complex video games down to the simplest parlour games, one of the most consistent elements of gaming is rules. The question of what matters more to the concept of gaming between ludology vs. narratology is one of the current most interesting topics in the world of game studies. On this week’s episode, Katya and Hannah are joined by Stephanie Kinzinger, Michael Hancock and returning guest David Rambo to talk about the concept of ludology vs. narratology including explaining just what they are, how they connect to ergodic literature and why part of the fun of games is the ability to lose. Take a listen and let us know your thoughts in the comments below.







    Citations and Links:







    * This episode’s Call for Comments* “Computer Game Studies, Year One” by Espen Aarseth* Everything by David O’Reilly* “ACTION BUTTON REVIEWS Tokimeki Memorial“







    * Thank you to Maximilian’s thoughtForm Music for our theme* Follow David’s blog: davidrambo.org* Hear Michale on the Three Panel Contrast podcast* Follow Michael on Twitter: @PersonOfCon* Follow Hannah on Twitter: @hannahleerogers* Follow Katya on Instagram: @justthatnerdkid* Follow us on Twitter: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Instagram: @voxpopcast* Follow us on Facebook: http://facebook.com/voxpopcast* Please Subscribe to our new YouTube channel!* Make sure you subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify or wherever podcasts are found and please leave us a review!

    The Arthurian Roundtable Roundtable

    The Arthurian Roundtable Roundtable

    We live in an era of constant reboots and updates to well known IP franchises. People (including us) like to complain about it, but honestly, well known franchises do very well at the box office… otherwise people wouldn’t keep doing it. But of all the superheroes, transformers, terminators and star wars that keep coming back there are some classics that put them to shame. Stories about King Arthur and the Knights of the Roundtable have been told, retold, revisited, revamped and rebooted for centuries in every medium from movies to comics to novels to epic poetry to word of mouth. Arguably, they are some of our most enduring stories. In fact, The Green Knight, a film directed by David Lowery starring Dev Patel premiered just over a week ago and as the most recent popular incarnation of Arthurian myth. The “original” version, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, came out somewhere around 1375 CE. six centuries later, it’s one of the top films at the box office. Kind of puts the eighty years we’ve been telling Superman stories to shame.







    On this week’s episode, Hannah, Wayne and Mav are joined by medievalist Jeff Stoyanoff for an Arthurian Roundtable Roundtable. We talk about Arthurian legend, its enduring legacy and the many many versions that have appeared over the years.







    Citations and Links:







    * This episode’s Call for Comments* The British Library’s original manuscript of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight* “The Green Knight’s Ending, Explained” by Joanna Robinson* “The Defence of Guinevere” by William Morris * The Once and Future King by T.H. White* Le Morte d’Arthur by Thomas Mallory* The Gawain Poet: Complete Works translated by Marie Borroff* Bedivere: The King’s Right Hand by Wayne Wise* King of Summer by Wayne Wise







    * Thank you to Maximilian’s thoughtForm Music for our theme* Follow Hannah on Twitter: @hannahleerogers* Follow Mav on Twitter: @chrismaverick* Follow Wayne on Instagram: @tetroc2017* Follow Mav’s Personal Blog: http://chrismaverick.com* Follow Wayne’s Personal Blog: http://wayne-wise.com* Follow us on Twitter: @a rel="noreferrer noo...

    • 1 hr 16 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
33 Ratings

33 Ratings

Mxsandy12 ,

Super smart look at pop culture!

Love this show!

Steve Shaffer ,

Home of the 5-Star Review!

This is a great podcast for anyone that wants to engage with the world around us in a more thoughtful way. Every week the hosts and occasionally guests pick a topic, typically related to popular culture, and do an academic deep dive into it, teasing the topic apart and occasionally deriving greater understanding because of it. Always entertaining, enlightening, and thought provoking. And now with 31 five star ratings out of a total of 32 ratings, I think it is fair to say that VoxPopcast is truly the home of the 5-Star Review.

EDSx2010 ,

Entertaining and illuminating

Review title says it all. A good listen for people who enjoy “pop culture” (games, comics, tv, movies) and want to think about the social and historical contexts in which those texts are situated. Recent highlight for me was discussion of Bioshock: Infinite in the context of Artaud’s theater of cruelty.

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