This week on the Pop Almanac, we dissect the top two movies at the box office: Twilight: Breaking Dawn-Part 1 and The Muppets. With the help of friend of the show and CultureMap Austin Assistant Editor Michael Graupmann ("Graupples" to his friends), your hosts delve into the larger cultural significance of glittering vampire pro-life arguments and felt-based sex appeal.
Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series of novels have clearly become one of the biggest literary phenomenons of our time, and erstwhile creative-writing major Duncan claims he read the first three books out of intellectual curiousity—but mostly just is awe-struck by the series' growing insanity, especially in the fourth installment of the film series (which, fair warning, is thoroughly spoiled during this episode). Michael has enjoyed the camp value of the movies with diminishing returns, while Brendan has lived a blissful Twilight-free life, until now.
This gives way to a reasoned debate about muppets. Does Jason Segel's screenplay for The Muppets coast on sentimentality, and if so, can you blame it when somepeople find themselves welling up five minutes into the film? Does the relaunch of the Muppets focus entirely too much on underwritten human roles? On one front, however, all parties stand united: Bring Back The Muppet Show!
Finally everyone is forced to choose a favorite Muppet (or Jim Henson creation, including the absurdly cruel proto-Kermit from his early Wilkins Instant Coffee commercials).
Stream the episode below or right click here to download.