December 14, 2015
Take a trip in your mind back to May 18th, 1999. Bill Clinton was the president, ‘Livin La Vida Loca’ and ‘No Scrubs’ were at the top of the music charts, and there was hope that ‘The Phantom Menace’ would be a great movie. Then the next day happened; the movie was released, and a bit of our collective innocence was forever lost.
There are videos of fans losing their shit with anticipation lining up to see the movie, and their reactions leaving the theater two hours later. Most said they loved it, but you can hear the twinge of doubt in their voices and see a blankness in their eyes, as if the brain was fighting itself, literally incapable of believing that the movie sucked. And in the coming years we obviously came to a consensus about the prequels: they were the most vile of garbage and George Lucas was persona non grata in the film industry.
It’s sixteen years later and we now hope we’re in a different place, but it’s easy to feel the parallels between where we are now and where we were in May 1999. We have no idea what ‘The Force Awakens’ will bring us later this week. We hope for the best, but also hope we’re not too cynical in expecting the worst.
On this week’s podcast, Jack O’Brien is joined by Cracked executive editor Jason Pargin (aka David Wong) for a deep dive into the history of Star Wars and how we got to this very moment. They discuss what the original trilogy got right, where the prequels went wrong, and the complicated genius of George Lucas.
January 26, 2020
Freedom sucks…and that is why we have to defend it. Because our democracy involves doing a lot of stuff that takes energy, takes time, and lacks that Michael Bay Quality that only a surprise missile launch can provide. So on this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt and special guest Jason Pargin (who writes for Cracked as David Wong) are exploring the ways being afraid of everything (an easy action) can stop us from being free. Discover the decades-long tradition of some Americans wanting to give up everything in exchange for not needing to think, the centuries-long tradition of people inciting fake panics, and the reasonable ways you can help change things for the better.
January 19, 2020
How’s your local shopping mall doing? Have you checked on it lately? Swing by sometime, because its department store might’ve turned into a call center or a hospital or a go-kart track. On this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by the one and only Kai Ryssdal (Marketplace, Make Me Smart) for a look at surprising, strange, and shocking stories from all over the U.S. economy. Discover an international pig flu, a 26-word statement that built the modern Internet, and more amazing ways cash is ruling everything around you. By the way, if you’re an American listener, you spent the past few years funding an astonishingly huge bailout. Surprise! Listen for details!
January 12, 2020
Movies, TV, gaming: three things that are theoretically a waste of time. Oh sure, they deliver value in the art sense, and comfort in the goofing-off sense. But what if they’re more valuable than that? What if consuming shows and playing video games (accidentally) turns people into real-life heroes? On this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by comedians/writers Caitlin Gill and Alex Watt for a look at the surprising number of times that exact thing happened. They’ll explore stories of regular people who saved a life thanks to skills gained randomly from cartoons, sitcoms, ‘World Of Warcraft’, and more silly entertainment.