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Pop Filter Editorial



In which we step from behind the curtain to spout opinions. 

“What’s right isn’t always popular, and what’s popular isn’t always right”- my Mom (and probably someone before her)

             I’m not here to make friends. This isn’t some meet-up group where we’re all into board games, or homemade wine, or wicker dolls, or ukulele metal, and we all end up at each other’s weddings, or at least go hiking once a month. I’m here to talk about a trend I’ve noticed growing, spreading through the masses like the name of the only weed dealer left holding at Coachella. I’m here to talk about bingeing.  Specifically binge watching, I could care less if you drink 30 beers in a sitting, or eat a whole Linda’s Fudge Cake followed by a pint of Cherry Garcia, all drizzled with chocolate syrup. There’s no detriment to those activities that I can see, except for maybe too much fun!

            But binge watching is serious, and needs to stop. Look I get that you don’t want to hear that right now. You’re probably covered in the dust made of Cheetos, Doritos, Fritos and Funyuns, taking a quick internet break in between Felicity and Dawson’s Creek marathons, and the last thing you want to hear is some jerk judging your choices. I understand, truly I do. Those of you caught up with the podcast know we just watched all eight episodes of True Detective in a single day. And that’s just for work. The same week, I watched half of the Wire season 5 because I felt I deserved a “me” day. So I’m not lecturing about something I know nothing about, like some fuddy-duddy preacher telling you not to go screw. Screw away! But maybe don’t do it for six hours in a row.  Wouldn’t you enjoy it more if you took (ample) breaks, refreshed with some juice and hummus, took a shower (you need it) and perhaps even a walk before jumping back into bed?

            Your brain doesn’t want to sit still for hours on end, focusing on the shenanigans of your favorite characters all day. And this isn’t some “TV rots you brain” message. TV is a huge part of my life, and I (scarily) don’t think I would be who I am without it. In fact, I want you to get more out of your TV and movies. I guarantee that in my 8 couchin’ hours of watching True Detective I missed some shit going on. Maybe it was clues to the identity of the Yellow King, or symbolism in the background the director sneakily put in the show, or maybe just a sweet back and forth between Woody and Matty Mac. Did missing stuff completely ruin my experience? Not even close, but I bet catching those things would’ve made a great show even greater. I realized, in that week of two days binging two amazing shows, how much I’ve probably missed over the years of binging. The advent of TV on DVD and streaming on Netflix and Hulu has fundamentally changed the way we watch television. I’m sure you have a friend (or yourself) who waits for the current season of The Walking Dead to be finished so they can knock it out over a weekend. Netflix has even fully accepted this, and that’s why they just release their shows in one batch. It’s become the normal way of consuming TV shows, but friends, it’s a weaker experience.

            Remember the days of waiting week to week (or even-gasp- a month or two for the holiday break) for a new episode? Whether it was Lost, or Buffy, or the West Wing, or whatever, the anticipation and fandom increased from that time waiting. The heated conversations of that week’s events, analyzing, wondering, hypothesizing, yearning, it all led to a deeper and more rewarding experience with that show of your choice. I’m a full believer in submerging yourself in the art you enjoy, but if you want the true experience, do it in bursts. Give your eyes a break, and your brain the chance to assimilate your shows. Say no to bingeing.-MG

*All that being said, I’m still gonna binge Smallville when I’m sick or depressed. But come on—not all shows are created equal.

PopFilter Podcast 138, Part 2


The finale of the most awaited show of the year: The Filterinos Three finish their discussion of True Detective.

PopFilter Podcast 138, Part 1


Its True  Detective time! Now that the HBO phenomenon has wrapped its first season, the friends sit down to discuss as much of it as humanly possible. Now that you’ve heard about what every other person on the planet thinks of the show, it’s finally time to see what the Filterinos Three have to say.

Part 2 of this 2 part epic will drop tomorrow morning.

Top Ten

Best Fictional Bars and Restaurants

The Peach Pit – Beverly Hills 90210

90210 - peachpitThe Peach Pit is amazing because of its chameleon nature, rendering it homey diner by day and totally kicking rock club when it becomes The Peach Pit After Dark. The diner is the perfect setting to discuss the eternal teen drama of two girls wearing the same dress to the Spring Dance.  But then if you’d rather rock out to something a little harder than the fast-talking Laverne (aka Brenda Walsh in pink glasses) lip-syncing to “Its My Party,” you can always catch a Color Me Badd or Collective Soul show next door while your friend OD’s in the bathroom. The best part about The Peach Pit is of course kindly and sarcastic saint of an owner Nat who’s always there to give the kids a job and some earnest advice…or in more dramatic soap opera fashion enter into an unwise business partnership with Dylan and walk Donna down the aisle. You know, normal boss stuff.

MacLaren’s Pub-How I Met Your Mother

how_i_met_your_motherMacLaren’s is that magical perfect bar TV bar that never gets too loud for conversation, but is always fully popping with interesting people and adventures. I know I’m getting old because every time I watch Barney try to pick up a girl speaking only Dolphin or the gang  goes rounds making their best Canadian sex position jokes (my favorite is the Reverse Rick Moranis), all I can think about is how nice it would be to find such a quiet, well lit bar. Preferably a bar directly under my apartment where the bartenders know me so well they not only chase randoms out of my favorite booth, but trust me to just get back behind the bar and run the place in a pinch…despite a litany of past untrustworthy behavior like boogie boarding down the stairs. Is that too much to ask?

The Max-Saved By The Bell

themaxSo we can all agree The Max is actually on campus right? That Bayside is just so much cooler than your average school that the cafeteria is really a bitchin’ juke joint run by a magician? After all the place is constantly overrun with high-schoolers, it’s not like you ever see a single other adult wander in and try to get a table. Then again maybe they’re scared off by the constant barrage of charity benefits, school plays and dances happening at any given moment.  Not to mention all the times the gang uses the Max to hold some sort of private club or practice, it’s almost always dance practice…Slater does love himself a unitard.

Paddy’s Irish Pub-It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

paddysPaddy’s Pub is like that really hip, underground spot you drag your friends to ironically to watch the train wreck. Sure sometimes (usually) the waitress double drops the bill or you show up to find a Prom pre-party filled with drunk teens or God forbid you wander into the secret Russian roulette game in the basement. And sometimes the bar is just left swinging open but nobody seems to be working…or even present.  But if you’re lucky, you just may happen to roll in on the day they screen the highly controversial Die Hard 5. Or the day they throw an amateur wrestling match for the troops and debut the hilarious Birds of War themes song. Then again you may have the grave misfortune to be present when the bar is taken hostage by the sweaty and incestuous milk-loving McPoyle clan…so maybe it’s not really worth it after all.

Central Perk-Friends

FriendsMore than the 90’s-tastic hairstyles and baby tees, Friends will end up being most dated by the steady stream of scenes in a coffee shop with absolutely zero laptops in sight. Central Perk is a laid back mecca of comfy couches and cappuccinos, a welcoming place to while away the afternoon with a group of – ahem, friends – talking high school stories, dating mishaps and dinosaurs with nary an employee urging you to order anything or move along and let some other patrons have the big couch, for god’s sake it’s been 5 hours. Unfortunately the coffee shop you’re more likely to find yourself in is the cold, quiet, store with hard chairs and tables like desks for people to type away in silence and glare at the boisterous group laughing in the corner.

Arnold’s/Al’s Drive-In-Happy Days

Happy DaysThe original in 70’s produced 50’s nostalgia, the Happy Days Drive-In will always hold a special place in America’s heart.  And for good reason, it was the heart of the community. The local watering hole where you were guaranteed to see everyone in town and whatever interesting strangers who happened to blow through. Arnold’s, then later, Al’s, was the backdrop for every birthday, first date and dance in Milwaukee. Not to mention the historic setting for man’s first contact with Aliens and the very first and only literal shark jump in television.

Café 80’s – Back to the Future Part II

Back to the future50’s diners are just so played out. I can’t’ wait until 2015 when not only do we get flying cars and holographic movie theaters, but apparently overnight all the boring Ruby’s and Mel’s will turn into robot-run 80’s nostalgia machines. Seriously I can think of nothing I want more than to order a Pepsi Perfect from a floating TV screen bearing a stuttering Ronald Reagan.

The Bronze – Buffy the Vampire Slayer

buffy-xander-when-she-was-badAnother fictional establishment I’d love to frequent, and not just because partying with the Scoobies is literally my biggest dream come true, but because nothing like this place actually exists in the real world. In a show about teenagers battling with demons, witchcraft and one apocalypse after another, the hardest thing to suspend disbelief over is the freaking awesome all ages dance club that serves the high school crowd and adults simultaneously. A live music venue with magical acoustics to allow quiet conversations of both romantic and threatening natures while the band is playing ten feet away. A stage that boasts local favorite High School garage band Dingoes Ate My Baby one night and Aimee Mann, Nerf Herder or Bif Naked the next. Dancing at The Bronze says something about you, it’s how we knew immediately that Season 2 Buffy was a little more jaded when she casually played with Xander’s heart or how close Willow and Tara had become when their tender slow dancing caused them to levitate with happiness. Though it was almost always infiltrated by evil gangs of vampires and you had a 50% chance of being killed there, that’s kind of part of the fun. As always Cordelia explains it best, “The Bronze. It’s the only club worth going to around here. They let anybody in, but it’s still the scene. It’s in the bad part of town.”

Cheer’s – Cheer’s

cheersI mean, not to be totally on the nose but who doesn’t want to go where everybody knows your name? After all, that kind of camaraderie and acknowledgement is probably what kept half of those characters from killing themselves. It’s great to know that even if your life is so depressing you take to drinking away your failed marriage(s) or dwindling career, there’s always some fellow barflies just a few feet away to trade quips with and distract yourself until you have to go home to your mother.

Mos Eisley Cantina – Star Wars

Mos EisleyBecause though old Ben Kenobi meant it as a warning, being told “you will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy” just makes the place sound like a stellar hangout.  I mean, it’s an exotic space saloon where you could contract the famous rogue Han Solo (and his magical ship that somehow made the Kessel Run shrink in size) or just bop along to the super catchy jazz stylings of Figrin D’an and the Modal Nodes. Man I hope they just play that one hit over and over.  It’s basically like the Wild West in there, you can openly slice someone’s arm off with a light sabre or shoot a bounty hunter completely unprovoked and apparently nobody bats an eye. Best of all droids aren’t allowed inside, so you can finally get some peace and quiet if you happen to have been traveling with a most neurotic and anxious protocol droid who seems to believe being fluent in over six million forms of communication means he should always be dithering, loudly. – AS



In which we review the films opening this weekend, just based on the trailer, to 100 percent accuracy.


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REJECTED TAGLINE: Just because no one asked for it, doesn’t mean we won’t make it

REVIEW: Recycled jokes, tired plot-lines, celebrities galore– the Muppets are back! The wackiness and heart used to be so balanced, and it’s replaced with a shmaltzfest of who cares about anything. They sure will make some money, as the Lego movie is finally out of theaters and what else do kids have to watch right now? Nostalgia is a dish best left un-served, and the only people who will enjoy this movie are Felt Fanatics who would say they loved Muppet Babies XXX.

SPOILER:Everything wraps up in a heart-warming song where enemies become friends and Ricky Gervais and Evil Kermit learn the error of their thieving ways.

RATING: **(out of ****)


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REJECTED TAGLINE: This Isn’t Your Hunger Games (It’s your kid sister’s)

REVIEW: Full Disloshe- I’m the guy who reads a book before it comes out as a movie so I can bitch about how not as good it was (and the kind of guy who needlessly abbrevies word). Where Divergent starts as poor young adult’s dystopian series, it ends up fairly successfully differentiating itself enough to make it worth reading if you’re into that kind of thing. The movie decided that was too hard, and plays of the generic romance, generic chosen one-ness, generic revolution-ness without any sort of charm. Diverges it does not.

SPOILER: The third book will definitely be split into two unnecessary movies, as is the way of the times.

RATING: **1/2(out of ****)

CountDown: Fictional Chefs


The series of talking about (sort of) past (sort of) jobs of the friends continues! This week Jason, Mike, and Ryan discuss their favorite fictional chefs in honor of Jason’s favorite pastime- reality shows about chefs.


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Listen, Fellas, I Don’t Get It Either – Grey’s Anatomy


In which Kerri tackles (as a female writer) the kind of content that’s marketed only to females.


I remember when the term “chick-flick” started cropping up. It started out as an epithet of sorts to be used solely towards tear jerkers about middle aged women and particularly terrible romantic comedies with plots so convoluted and asinine that the phrase “suspension of disbelief” washed its hands of each and every one of them. Since then, it seems that all categories of media and genres contained within have their own tiny “chick” niche, from tv to music to books. While I may be completely female, I’m lucky enough to be only about 40% “chick,” 50% on the outside. As such, I am both cursed and blessed. I can’t fully escape being inundated with bits of these little pockets of media that I’m expected to enjoy because I was born with girl parts. However, I’m also lucky enough to be able to discern the hidden gems from the steaming piles of excrement. Not everything deemed “chick” is as terrible as you might think; some of it is much, much worse. And some of it is wildly underestimated simply because it centers on women. I’m here to help you discover the difference.

This is the target demographic, I think.


Grey’s Anatomy

I just heard the other day that Grey’s Anatomy, currently in it’s 10th season, is poised to continue on for two more seasons. Doing some quick math, I realized that this show has been on a major network for roughly one third of my existence on this planet and I’ve somehow managed to never view a single episode. Until now, that was something of a point of pride, as I automatically equated it to something housewives watched together over multiple bottles of Skinny Girl wine. Still, ten seasons is nothing to scoff at, particularly with the major networks being so fond of employing that “ax that shit within three episodes”  policy for new shows. So, for the betterment of society and to satisfy my own purely morbid curiosity, I decided to find out what the big deal was. An episode and a half into season one, I’d made my decision.



Why Chicks Love It

As I understand it, one or both of these Irish fellows has something to do with the appeal

I don’t like to judge books by their covers — or tv series by their opening credits — but in this instance, the Grey’s theme montage basically tells you everything you need to know. They oh-so-cleverly match action from surgical instruments on a tray to a hand curling eyelashes, from masculine hands zipping up someone else’s little black dress to latex gloved hands tying up some scrubs, from an IV bag and down the tubes to liquor pouring into a martini glass, finally ending on two pairs of naked legs entwined on a gurney as someone pulls a surgical curtain closed. Obviously, this isn’t your average steamy evening soap, ladies and gentlemen. This is a steamy evening soap about FABULOUS LADY DOCTORS! They’re smart, educated, and worried about landing a man! Just like you! Lucky for these really-very-pretty-but-only-average-by-ridiculous-Hollywood-standards ladies, they’re surrounded by gorgeous man doctors just a-ripe for the picking. Also, along the way, there are,  like, patients to save, or some junk. To set the scene adequately, the first scene of the pilot focuses on our titular Meredith Grey kicking out the naked (and so far nameless) man she drunkenly hooked up with the night before the first day of her surgical residency, remaining pithy and charming all the while. See ladies! You can have it all! Meredith Grey is like the Marlo Thomas of the 21st Century!

Is It Actually Good?


NO. Let me reiterate something here: the first scene of the pilot focuses on the heroine — typically a character intended to be redeemable — waking up naked on her own couch on the morning that she’s supposed to start learning how to be a surgeon, realizing she’s late, and remembering the naked dude on her floor whose name she never bothered to learn. This is not Marlo Thomas. This is not a smart, strong woman who makes intelligent choices based on attaining independent goals. This is, in fact, a woman who is barely better than a drunken college freshman trying to make it to their poorly-scheduled 8am. There is one important difference, though; Meredith Grey has successfully managed to figure out how to pull off this schtick all the way through medical school.  Sadly, in the episode and a half I made it through before wanting to scream, I didn’t get the impression that any of the characters were given any more depth than that puddle that forms on my driveway every time it rains. The little bit of humor they desperately crow-barred in for levity was cringe-worthy at best and, in some instances, down right fucking insulting to the intelligence of the masses. At one point, it’s discovered that a patient – the victim of a very violent rape – actually bit off the penis of her attacker. One of our supposedly clever lady doctors takes one look at the tip on ice and says, “Hm. Well, that’s one way to take a bite out of crime.” I mean, rape jokes are almost always a hit, right? People love them and they almost never incite internet flame wars or anything.

ER was on the air for fifteen years. Remember those first few years when it was actually a really good show about the personal and professional lives of truly caring ER doctors and nurses? Grey’s Anatomy doesn’t, obviously, since the show is essentially a direct lift of those last 6-10 seasons that were purely about which George-Clooney-wanna-be was sleeping with whoever replaced Julianna Margulies.



PopFilter Episode 137


That’s right, folks! 137 episodes! On this episode, Jason and Ryan discuss “Abandoned City” by Hauschka, Comedy Central’s latest offering in “Review”, the Daniel Radcliffe vehicle “Kill You Darlings” and continue their insane nosedive into surrealism with Luis Bunuel’s “L’age D’or”. It’s jam packed with laughs, rants, opinions and actual jam. Hold on to your toast.

Email us to get your opinion on the show:

Or call and leave a voicemail: 1-562 DRDJ POP


Review us on iTunes!


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Want to record your own podcast? Check out Phantom48 for all of your electronic and recording needs!



The second of a 3 part series, Ryan, Jason and Mike continue to look at the careers they had before blossoming into podcasting moguls. This week’s countdown discusses the top 5 fictional comics, because sometimes hobbies are viewed as careers by delusional morons who don’t understand what a career is.


Email us to get your opinion on the show:

Or call and leave a voicemail: 1-562 DRDJ POP


Review us on iTunes!


Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.


Want to record your own podcast? Check out Phantom48 for all of your electronic and recording needs!




* (out of ****)


After three years of reviewing pilots, I think I’m all done. The worst. The WORST. THE WORST. Everyone involved should be banned from television forever. Do not watch, even if every cast member is a close relative of yours. Fuck everything. I’m out.

- Ryan Haley

Ryan and Jason vs. SNL







Sasheer Zamata gets her first lead role in a skit, and it’s…OK. Her straight-woman acting needs a little bit of work, as she is a little wooden, and too reliant on the cue cards. Maybe I’m underestimating how hard it is to be a cast member, but if you only have lines in one skit, shouldn’t you have them down a little better than this. On the bright side, though, she does have two laugh-out-loud moments that she kills. The premise basically boils down to a Scandal fan, played by host Lena Dunham, gets a job working for the Scandal crew, and is totally out of her league. The skit gets all it needs out of its premise before it bounces, and Zamata shows promise. – RH


Taran Killam is out of his fucking mind. Once the McConaughey impression began, I was enamored. Then I closed my eyes and would have bet money that it was actually McConaughey talking. On top of an incredibly accurate impression, this motherfucker has jokes! This is what SNL should be; topical with a spattering of impressions and a strong bank of jokes. – JRN


I was unsure what to expect when I heard that Lena Dunham was hosting SNL. Was she, like Louis C.K. going to commit or was she, like Louis C.K. ultimately just not going to work? Turns out, she worked more than not because of her commitment and oddly endearing screen presence. While her shtick on Girls can have a melodramatic bent, here she hit most of the notes she needed to and constantly kept it light. Her portrayal of a teen having just hit puberty was pitch perfect as she has no idea what to do while her body is feeling everything ever felt. Bonus points to Pedrad for using her annoying bubbliness to her advantage, Moynahan for doing the most with the least and Jon Hamm for…being there. – JRN



Most of the world agrees that Kate McKinnon and Taran Killam are SNL’s current MVPs, and some people might make a case for Bobby Moynihan and Kenan Thompson being a close second tier. I’m not going to argue, but I think Cecily Strong might be the most underrated. Her pretty quick Weekend Update transition aside, sista’ can come up with some pretty decent characters and voices. That’s what makes this skit hurt more than usual. A DOA premise (a guy reveals to his girlfriend’s friends that he’s a champion of men’s rights) totally wastes Cicely Strong’s Venezulean girlfriend who is confused about the situation. I’m not going to feel too bad for her, though – this entire thing was probably concocted around her ability to do that voice, and that’s not a good way to write a skit. – RH


Once you think you have this skit figured out, it hits you with comedy. Unfortunately, that comedy doesn’t come until the last 20 seconds. Lena Dunham does awkward perfectly while everyone else just kind of exists. It’s basically a car with four straight men in it. And while the payoff is there, it is tremendously underwhelming. – JRN

PopFilter 136


The PopFilter podcast celebrates is 136th week anniversary with a celebration unmatched by anything since last week’s episode, and probably next week’s episode. The friends review the new Sundance Channel show The Red Road, the Howard Hawks’ classic El Dorado, and begin the new PopFilter BlindSpot, director Luis Bunuel. 

Top Ten

Actors Who ARE Their Characters

Mayim Bialik/ Amy Farrah Fowler

As the only legitimate nerd on the Big Bang Theory, I’m convinced the part was written specifically for this former child star. A full two years before neurobiologist Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler met Dr. Sheldon Cooper and became television’s most awkwardly endearing, non-sexual couple, she was discussed as a possible teammate for the gang’s Physics Bowl Team when Raj says “You know who’s apparently very smart, is the girl who played TV’s Blossom. She got a Ph.D. in Neuroscience or something.” And girlfriend does, a fact she gets to throw in the face of any unprepared reporter she wants like the one above at the SAG awards: Not only do Mayim and Amy have the same degree, but the actress’s preferences actually dictate the character’s fashion sense. While Amy’s penchant for grandma sweaters and ankle length skirts are never explained past frumpy nerd wear, in reality Mayim’s conservative Jewish lifestyle mandates long sleeves and skirts below the knee. But apparently has no problem with on-air spanking.

Nick Offerman/Ron Swanson

nick offerman

Though he has implicitly said “I’m not the ultimate male that Ron Swanson is” we all know that’s just a feint to protect his rabidly defended privacy. But there’s just too much evidence to support the theory that Ron Swanson and Nick Offerman are one in the same, I mean the man wrote the guide book to being manly and woodsy. He owns a wood shop in Los Angeles where they take their time building all sorts of things tables and benches the old fashioned, noble way.  So that means every time Ron proves he’s the most awesome person on Parks and Recreation by building his own table or fixing something, it’s really Nick. He’s not miming like some pansy ass actor, he is building with his hands like a Man. Same thing goes for the crazy sex scenes with ex-wife Tammy II played by real-life wife Megan Mullaly. When they destroy everything around them with the ferocity of their lovemaking, that shit is REAL, like Eyes Wide Shut real. We’re getting a glimpse into the glorious sex life of Hollywood’s most hilarious couple and it’s intense. Now all we need to do is catch him, on tape actually rocking out on the sax a la Duke Silver and he won’t be able to deny his true identity anymore.

Emma Watson/Hermione Granger

emma watson


 Sure she’s not legit magic, but Emma’s story is elsewise eerily similar to that of her alter ego Hermione Granger. She was a normal (dare I say Muggle) child born into mediocrity but thrust into a glittering and fantastical new world as a child.  A world of fame and fortune so far removed from what the rest of society experiences that turns most impressionable youths vapid and vain but not practical Emma. When asked in an early interview how she planned to spend her first massive movie star paycheck, the 11-year-old sounded completely in character when famously declaring she was “going to stick it in the bank until I’m 21.”  She’s passionate about education, citing her upbringing in a household where pencils and notebooks were treasured Christmas gifts, and has continued to take time off from acting to pursue education at Brown and Oxford. Emma’s comparable values come into play when speaking about the power of being a role model and what Hermione stands for and means to a generation of little girls. “Hermione is so close to who I am as a person that I’ve never really had to research a role. I’m literally rediscovering what it means to be an actress.”

John Barrowman/Captain Jack Harkness

cpt jack


 As the morally ambivalent, bi-sexual, rogue Time Agent, Captain Jack is always ready to flirt with and jump into bed with anything with a pulse…regardless of the gender, species or temporal position. On this plane of existence, the always dashing and mischievous John Barrowman has become the king of ComiCon, his panel appearances laced with enough public groping and wildly raunchy tales of Gay Hollywood to charm the pants off of every fan, compatible sexuality notwithstanding.  Half the fun of a Barrowman appearance is the fact that practically one in three fans who gets up to the microphone to ask a question is likely to get kissed or boob honked. John became Jack and then John again at the 2009 ComiCon when his excitement over the spontaneous kiss with The Doctor himself gave him the most epic fangirl nerdgasm of all time…and immediately became the topic of roughly one million new fan fictions. 

Mindy Kaling/Mind Lahiri



Possibly an unfair addition to the list seeing as how she writes the damn show, which maybe requires me to include all comedians with their own shows like Louie CK or Jerry Seinfeld. But it’s really her personal essays and Twitter feed that prove that Mindy is the same celebrity-obsessed and wickedly smart klutz she plays on TV. Equal parts confident and self-deprecating, glamorous and desperate, in every incarnation Mindy is the brutally honest best-friend you wish you had. Further Twitter stalking has provided definitive evidence that she and B.J. Novak have the same super intense friendship and on-again off-again thing they wrote for themselves to act out back on The Office. Just seems like the kind of high drama, narcissistic thing Ryan and Kelly would do…

Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe


The most successful product of the Golden Age studio system, little Norma Jean was plucked, dyed and surgically altered into the epitome of American sexuality. And thus Marilyn Monroe was born, renamed so the alliteration of the letter M subconsciously mimics a moan. Every aspect of her persona was carefully cultivated to project an aura of sex, from her breathy voice to the butt wiggling walk created by shaving each and every left heel just 1/3 of an inch to produce a sexy, uneven gait. But the most important alteration was Marilyn herself, she could only play the silver screen goddess who has held strong to her place in pop culture for 50 years by becoming her inside and out. So as her characters walked the line of innocence and innuendo so did she. And as she fell I and out of love onscreen, so did she off screen marrying and divorcing 3 times.  She played the flirty blonde who could rely on her charm to get away with anything, then proceeded to star in the only Presidential sex scandal the American public finds delicious rather than demoralizing.

David Duchovny/Hank Moody



Honestly I think in this case David Duchovny was offered the role of a sex addict and realized that was a great fake thing to say he had and thus explain away any and all despicable behavior in his real life. So Californication is about a sex addict who can’t control where his deranged penis takes him? Psh what a coincidence! So is the case for the big Hollywood actor hired to play him! Maybe Duchovny saw something of himself in this Ivy League writer, considering his background as a Princeton grad with secret book “in a drawer somewhere.”  He’s even quoted as saying that acting Hank Moody is “a wish-fulfillment fantasy.”  So with zero first-hand information or authority in this matter, I call bullshit on Duchovny actually being addled with sex addiction. The man saw his chance and he took it… which actually is a pretty low and thus very Moody-like stunt to pull.

Robert Downey Jr./Tony Stark

Robert downey stark


One of these men is responsible for one of my all-time favorite quotes – “Listen, smile, agree. And then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway.” Now quick guess who said it, Robert or Tony? Incidentally it’s a real life quote from the man himself, but it would not be at all out of place in a Marvel movie. Because though Robert Downey Jr. will probably never develop Tony Stark’s scientific or engineering skills, they’re essentially the same person oozing the same rebellious charisma. That special blend of anti-authority swagger and tortured genius that makes the public clamor to forgive any and all alcoholic hijinks of these charmingly flawed scoundrels.  Such confidence is completely valid given Downey’s amazing real-life secret power of ever-increasing attractiveness with age. The line between actor and character is so blurred here that sometimes Tony comes out in the middle of a Hollywood Reporter interview, and sometimes Robert’s personal eating habits make it into the middle of The Avengers. He hid food all over the set for continual snacking, so in the lab when Stark offers Bruce Banner a blueberry and Bruce looks kind of amused but takes it? That was a totally unscripted moment of friend sharing snacks and a totally Tony Downey Stark Jr. move.

Jeff Bridges/The Dude

the dude

He’s been the President, an alien, a rock star and more than one cowboy. But the role Jeff Bridges is best known for, the one he constantly quotes himself in interviews and he one he’s admitted to being most connected to is, of course, The Dude.  Much like the Dude, Bridges is a laidback guy who can rock a ponytail and sandals combo that would make most men look homeless. His speech is peppered with liberal usage of California anachronisms “man” and “trip” and he’d much rather just hang out than…do stuff. He’s known for being a reluctant participant, averse to making commitments and protective of his leisure time. Still the most important reason Bridges continually being compared to his defining character after 16 years and countless award winning roles is the fact that he can’t refrain from quoting The Dude himself at least once per interview. Jeff is the Dude, and the Dude abides.

James Dean

james dean


 A troubled youth too beautiful and desperate to live for long, James Dean was the living embodiment of his iconic teen rebel role in Rebel Without a Cause. He had a traumatic childhood in which he lost both parents and was a victim of sexual abuse, making a rebellious and brooding young adult. An avid drag racer Dean was banned by the movie studio from racing during filming as a safety precaution, but true legends can’t be restrained. On September 20, 1955 while driving his Porsche Speedster down the highway he tried to get around another car using a “side stepping” racing move, lost control and both cars hit head on.   Dean’s sensational car crash death seemed so perfectly scripted to be part of his persona it had to be either the most daring and committed publicity stunt of all time or the karmic ending to a fame-making deal made with the Devil.  - AS

CountDown: Fictional Teachers


In this week’s CountDown, the friends get a little nostalgic. The first of a 3 part series, Ryan, Jason and Mike begin to look at the careers they had before blossoming into podcasting moguls. Plus everyone had teachers, except for Jason who was raised in the wild. Though I guess you could say nature was his teacher. And she was a wily witch.


Stay after the credits for a rare moment of intimacy among the friends!


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In which we review the films opening this weekend, just based on the trailer, to 100 percent accuracy.

300: Rise of an Empire

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AKA: Sexy Bloody Tan Dance Party

REVIEW: It’s time to party like it’s 2007, or whenever 300 first came out. You expect me to waste even more time on that cinematic cumshot by looking up the exact year? Tough. The proposed prequel, but apparently sequel, to 300 asks the same questions and adds nothing: wouldn’t it be cool to see a bunch of “Greeks” slow-mo fight their way through hordes of indiscriminate brown people? Like every battle between good and evil, it’s as un-nuanced as can be, blue team fights black and gold team. We want blue to win, they’re Greek and we cam from Greece didn’t we? Didn’t we? Well, not really but at least they’re wearing our colors, and are lead by rippling bearded men;  not by some chick with black hair and her pal with too many piercings. Those two are icky.

SPOILER:Even after the leaders of the sides bone in the middle of the battlefield, the war rages on.

RATING: *(out of ****)


The Grand Budapest Hotel

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AKA: Take Your Hands Off My Lobby Boy

REVIEW: And so we finally come to a glimmer of light in the dark post-December movie releases. It’s March now folks, and that means movie are allowed to get slightly better with each passing moment– not a moment too soon says I. Wes Anderson is back in all his twee glory, and along with his regular troupe of players, he’s added many, many more well-knowns to dress up in bright colors and talk like it’s a screwball comedy from the thirties. Everyone is game, and Willem Dafoe finally has an outlet for his Spider-Man era flamboyant evil that fits flawlessly with the rest of the film. No one goes to an Andersen for realism, and it’s a nice change to get this kind of fantasy every few years. Keep it up you merry band of goobers.

SPOILER:There’s gonna be A LOT of hotel lobby boys next halloween.

RATING: ***(out of ****)

PopFilter’s Foreign Flick of the Week

In  which Stephanie Reviews a Film from Notmerica



Y Tu Mamá También


When I started telling people I was writing an article on this movie, their reactions ranged from, “Wow, that’s a really great movie!” to “Hey! That was the first movie I ever jacked off to.” It has quite a reputation.

Simply put, this 2001 movie is about sexual desire, and what makes it so fascinating is the depth at which it explores this subject. The driving force in this movie is the main character, Luisa, played by Ana López Mercado, who after finding out she is terminally ill leaves behind a philandering husband to go on a trip to a beach called La Boca de Cielo (the mouth of Heaven) with a couple of horny teenagers, Tenoch and Julio (played by Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna.) Against the backdrop of a country being rocked by drug cartels and political corruption, the trio find themselves in all kinds of complicated emotional and sexual entanglements.
Now, sexual desire has been the subject of study for many disciplines, but one of particular interest to this movie is the psychoanalytic approach. The father of psychoanalysis was Sigmund Freud, and he theorized that everyone’s personality was driven by three forces. The first one, the one we are all born with, is called the id. The id is the basis for all carnal desire–all it wants to do is fuck, fight, and eat. The second component of personality is called the superego. This forms as a result of socialization: learning how to behave according to what is expected of you. It is concerned with cultural mores and fitting in. The third and final component of the personality is the ego. This is the middle man that who weighs the influences of the other two forces and makes all the decisions. This is the part of you that is concerned with morality.

Yeah, something like that.

Yeah, something like that.

Sex and sexual desire are/is what happens when the superego gets lost in traffic and never shows, and the id, the thing concerned with getting the most basic of needs fulfilled, has complete control.
This film is brought to us by our neighbors and exporter of the taco, Mexico.

Dia del los muertos inspired art has become quite kitchy in the US. Every damn day I see a white girl post a picture on facebook wearing sugar skull makeup.

Dia del los Muertos inspired art has become quite kitschy in the US. Every damn day I see a different white girl post a picture on Facebook of her sugar skull makeup.

A film from a country obsessed with death has one very important thing to say about it: death is more closely related to sex than it is to life. It seems only fitting, since sex is the creation of life while death is the expiration of it. Life is just what happens between fucking and dying.
So we can easily liken what “life” means with the superego, that thing that is concerned with all things social like caring about art, planning for a career and having a 401k. Tenoch and Julio are seemingly ruled by their libidos. They are constantly bragging about their sexual prowess and code of honor that their friendship is built on. But as the audience watches the two during sex, their performances, well, leave a lot to be desired. Also, sexual desire leads both of these guys to break one of their golden rules: no sleeping with a friend’s girlfriend. This reveals all that bravado is nothing more than a hollow construct, a means of fitting in. In evolutionary terms, fitting in is also know as the survival of the fittest, because what is life’s most basic definition if not just the ability to survive? They represent the perpetual motion machine that is life. It is something that when challenged, easily falls apart. Sex is the crucible that proves the metal of these constructs is no good. This means that in order to survive, people sometimes have to deny what they really desire, but that ultimately, that never works.

Like I said, it never works.

Like I said, it never works.

So if the superego is concerned with life, we can reasonably say that the id is more concerned about death. The audience doesn’t know that Luisa is dying until 3 minutes before the film ends, after she is already gone. But by then it’s a foregone conclusion because we see her grapple with her mortality throughout the entire film. When she learns of her imminent doom it frees her from everything her superego wants– stability, to someday travel, for her husband to stop cheating on her–none of it matters anymore. All that matters is the id’s burning need to satiate desires because even from the minute you are born, the id knows it is on a mortal coil and gonna die. And that kind of fire is attractive, and Luisa is seductive in her freedom. In one of the final scenes of the movie, director Alfonso Cuarón has Luisa look straight into and dance toward the camera. It’s the moment where Luisa becomes desire incarnate, breaking the fourth wall and challenging you the viewer to just give in scratch that itch; life is temporary, after all.

"Come on, no one's looking."

“Come on, no one’s looking.”

This is why sex is so awkward between strangers, yet at the same time fosters intimacy. During sex, all that learned behavior about right and wrong just melts away and you are your truest, most basic self. Tenoch and Julio’s friendship couldn’t survive the intimacy of the most honest moment of their friendship that happens during the ménage à trois  scene, something the entire movie builds up to, when they share an tender, emotional kiss before the camera fades away what happens next is left up to the audiences’ imaginations. Life goes on, and the survival mode flip gets switched. The friendship can no longer survive once the forbidden fruit gets tasted.
An absolutely fantastic and complex movie. I loved, loved loved it. Watch it with a loved one. Not your mom. I don’t care what the title suggests. NOT YOUR MOM!!!
Next Week: Sweden’s Let the Right One In.
Stephanie Rose









The writing’s on the wall. As SNL’s current funniest, most consistent character, Taran Kiliam’s Jebidiah Atkinson has begun his death march. The next time we see him, his schtick will start to wear a little thin. And then SNL will get the message FIVE MONTHS TOO LATEand then we’ll hate him. We probably won’t even remember what made us like him in the first place. So please, sit back and enjoy the best four minutes of the entire show…while you can. – RH


This skit works from start to finish. Kenan finds a way to do a pretty good Steve McQueen impression and sets up another classic SNL impression-off. The thing is, there are no other impressions. This is just funny people being funny. This is funny people reacting to situations, people, environments, ideas and suggestions that make them uncomfortable and doing it in a funny way. The entire thing is played for silly, awkward laughs and ends up being one of the best sketches of the season. Shit, even Brooks Wheelan made me laugh. – JRN


This one got me big time. I knew the boss had a giant bag of shit but I didn’t quite know why. FInding out was awesome, but not because of what the boss did. The joy of this sketch is the unknowing way that everyone else makes the boss man feel like a tiny piece of garbage. And then Kenan Thompson comes and basically kills it with minimal screen time. Good job, SNL! – JRN



I wish SNL had some sort of safe word, and each skit had a “skit captain” that could use that safe word to end the skit, crash landing it as safely as possible. It takes us (the home audience and studio audience) about 60 seconds to know whether a skit is going to work or not. It’s pretty safe to assume that the actors can feel that, too. Alright Taran, you’re the Skit Captain of the Murder Mystery skit tonight. Get us the fuck out of it. – RH


I don’t mean to be “that guy”, but come on. Aidya Bryant has, as she would say, gots to goes. The thin veneer of a character she has attmepted to develop is gone and all we’re left with is sassy fat chick. That’s what all of her shit boils down to, which is a real bummer because she seems to have a knack for timing. It’s frustrating to see someone that has a clear understanding of comedy not be able to make it work for themselves. Oh, and anytime SNL tries to do a real-time green screen, it needs to be a perfect sketch to avoid the shit list. Because that shit always ends up looking like shit. – JRN

PopFilter Podcast 135


On a very special episode of the PopFilter Podcast, Jason and Ryan dive deep into scariest place on Earth: Mike’s brain. Join them on their journey as they discuss just a few of the things that make Mike tick: Aesop Rock, Reggie Watts, and the movie Scream. Hold on tight and try not to barf.



In which we review the films opening this weekend, just based on the trailer, to 100 percent accuracy.


AKA: Air Taken: Liam’s Last Flight

REVIEW: Everything you want to happen in this kind of movie happens, and it’s crazy enjoyable. See this twice before even considering watching last week’s 3 Days to Kill. Did you really want a longer review? Watch the trailer again. It’s fine.

SPOILER: Non Stop 2: We Told You We Don’t Stop is already in the works, and it takes place on a space shuttle.

RATING: **1/2(out of ****)


Son of God

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AKA: Passionless Christ

REVIEW: You know the story, even if you don’t know every psalm and pgospel. This movie heard what Aronofsky is doing to the story of Noah, and went, Fuck that shit. Instead of being more dramatic than the original stories, we’re going to take the energy way down and make it really hard to care.” And they do a fine job at that. Even though there’s a built in audience, and it could be a controversial movie, they skirt around all of that and make the most boring movie of 2014. Which is hard to do when you’re making a film about the original super-hero, but hey not every Jesus film can win ‘em over with gallons of blood and a dead language.

SPOILER: Jesus shows up at a coffee shop in France after the credits talking to Director Fury. Everything’s a franchise these days.

RATING: *1/2(out of ****)



CountDown: 2013 Mixtape


The year that was 2013 can finally stop being discussed, and no one is happier than everyone here at PopFilter. To celebrate the culmination of 2013, and even more the fact that it shall never be mentioned again, the friends do something they’ve never done before– act like friends and cooperate. Together, Jason, Mike and Ryan make the ultimate mixtape celebrating a year they know hate after hour and hour of talking about it. Check it out! And then make the mixtape on your spotdora or whatever.


Miss the best of the year? Here you go!







Email us to get your opinion on the show:

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