Episode 24: Podcasts of Sharks & Superheroes

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Ms. Marvel #3, Captain Marvel #2 and the all-new Lumberjanes | Ms. Marvel hits its stride, Captain Marvel encounters the Guardians of the Galaxy, giving us hope that we'll see her on the big screen (We've got a story idea, Marvel. Call us), and the Lumberjanes kick ass, take names and drink cocoa. After striking out with X-Men and Fearless Defenders, we finally get a lady ensemble comic we think's a winner! Lumberjanes is co-written by Noelle Stevenson, who not only did the illustrations for Rainbow Rowell's Fangirl, but also brought us The Broship of the Ring. And here's the Slate article on how the Carol Corps and the Kamala Korps are changing Marvel's sense of what kinds of superheroes sell.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Non-stop non-fiction! We recommend some of our favorite nonfiction books for you (sophisticated books about religion and relationship, imperialism, and science from Allison, Tori Spelling from me). You can find all the books we discuss in the Book Report at our LibraryThing page! And the Sarah Vowell essay "You, Sir, Are No Rosa Parks" is up in its entirety over at Time (where it was originally published).
  • Dreams of Gods and Monsters
    Laini Taylor wraps up her Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy with a finale that isn't at all what we expected, but was everything we never knew we always wanted. Have you read it? Listen to our discussion, then join us in the comments to talk fantasy trilogies, petty revenge, beautiful language and Ziri forever!
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "IOU" by Metric
    from Friend of the Show Julia M.

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 23

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Episode 23: Up All Night to Get Bucky

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies! Thanks to Jamie McKelvie for our episode title!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Avengers Assemble #25, Hawkeye #18, Loki: Agent of Asgard #3, She-Hulk #3, Pretty Deadly #5 | Kelly Sue DeConnick says good-bye to Avengers Assemble and damn, does she go out on a high note. This storyline with Spider-Girl/Anya Corazon has been a-mazing. Pretty Deadly also just wrapped up a story arc, so if you've been wanting to check out some of KSD's work, but prefer to trade-wait, your time is coming! Also in this segment: gritty L.A. noir, talkin' 'bout art, Journey Into Mystery callbacks and the kick-ass, all-lady cast of She-Hulk.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Allison recommends her favorite home design books! Check them (and other books mentioned in the Book Report) out at our Library Thing page. You'll have to take my word for it, but Allison's apartment is super cute, so you're in good hands! There's also this, for those of you who are curious about how your design book/magazine sausage is made.
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier
    Captain America: The Winter Soldier is breaking box office records and getting rave reviews and, well, we're not surprised. I'm pretty sure we'll both be seeing this one on the big screen again. Our discussion is *extremely* spoilery, so if you want to skip it, here's what you need to know: Go see this movie. Run, don't walk. It's a great movie and a major game changer in the MCU.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Ooh La La" by the Ditty Bops
    from Friend of the Show Julia M.
  • Please take our survey! For science!

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 22

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • The AV Club takes a look at Brooklyn 99's main weakness, Boyle's obsession with Rosa, and why it's just not funny to have a dude refuse to hear a woman's noSitcoms pretend there are no consequences for the woman being pursued. In most sitcoms, there’s an acknowledged comfort zone that allows us to enjoy what might be uncomfortable in something more realistic: We know these heroes are essentially harmless.
  • The Toast makes an eloquent argument in favor of Veronica/Mac being the greatest romance on Veronica Mars. I subscribe wholeheartedly (I, Allison, speak only for myself here; this is most certainly not an official This Week in Ladies position, as you probably already know if you listened to our most recent episode).
  • On the subject of Veronica, here's an interview with the movie's costume designer, and here's one with the show's. Lot of interesting stuff about your television sausage gets made (a CSI:NY warehouse sale?!).
  • Josh Charles was on Keith Olbermann's show and did the sports headlines as Dan Rydell and oh, my heart.
  • Maria Popova of Brain Pickings has published an old Mark Twain book of advice for young girls, if you know a girl of frankly any age who needs a present. Becca and I already had our birthdays this year, but, you know, we can overlook lateness. It contains gems like this: If your mother tells you to do a thing, it is wrong to reply that you won’t. It is better and more becoming to intimate that you will do as she bids you, and then afterward act quietly in the matter according to the dictates of your best judgment.
  • HuffPo has a list of 14 badass female authors, including some I didn't know about. For real, how is there not a movie about Nellie Bly yet?
  • Mallory Ortberg rewrote The Velveteen Rabbit as a horror story. This is genuinely some of the most upsetting shit you'll read this week: Whose skin do you have, the Rabbit had asked him, and the Skin Horse had shivered to hear the excitement in his voice. Whose skin did you get.
  • BuzzFeed has a recording of the demo tape Michael Jackson did for "Beat It," and it's worth a listen. Goddamn, that's talent.
  • Ta-Nehisi Coates at the top of his game is a force of fucking nature: If you can not bring yourself to grapple with that which literally built your capitol, then you are not truly grappling with your country. And if you are not truly grappling with your country, then your beliefs in its role in the greater world (exporter of democracy, for instance) are built on sand.
  • This Is What Happens When You Put Dogs In A Photo Booth.

Episode 22: Most Likely To

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Illness has struck TWiL HQ, so we're skipping The Book Report this week to bring you an abbreviated show, done in our best Phoebe Buffay sexy voices. Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Hawkeye #17, Ms. Marvel #2, Black Widow #4, Captain Marvel #1, and Sex Criminals #5 | No home runs in comics this week, I'm sorry to say, but we do have a lively discussion about "Ms. Marvel." It's okay--we did love the exact same joke in "Hawkeye," so our house divided can still stand. "Black Widow" and "Captain Marvel" weren't really for me this week (it's not them, it's me) and I ditched "Sex Criminals" altogether, despite an earlier promise to Allison, but she has some thoughtful things to say about the portrayal of mental illness in this issue. (Disagreements about Ms. Marvel! Broken promises! Coming up next on "Behind the Podcast!") Speaking of "Sex Criminals," Chip Zdarsky tweeted pictures of his models for Suzie and Jon earlier this month and the resemblance is uncanny.
  • The Veronica Mars Movie
    Major spoilers ahead! The disagreements continue as we discuss one Mr. Logan Echolls. Not that I disagree with what Allison and NPR's Linda Holmes have to say about Logan, and if he were a real dude, I'd keep my distance and want my friends to do the same. But I don't mind the fantasy of a bad man saved by the love of a good woman. Plus he's so hot and their chemistry is like burning. Aside from that one little, tiny thing, we pretty much agreed on the strengths (witty repartee,  atmosphere, father-daughter relationships) and weaknesses (television pacing, serious Piz misuse) of the Veronica Mars movie. So, did you see it? What did you think? Write in or leave a comment below!
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Mother of Invention" by The Trishas

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 21

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • I can't believe I forgot to include this last time, but I wrote a post for brandnewkindof's The First Album I Ever Bought series! Click on through if you want to know my thoughts about 90s radio country.

  • Our friends over at Stacked have a great post on unlikeable female characters in YA novelsThe characters are unlikeable because they don’t conform to an established societal ideal of what it means to be female. Boys are allowed to be loud and disgusting and ambitious. They can disagree and forge ahead and be considered trailblazers and pioneers. They are allowed a full range of feelings and behaviors that women are not.

  • These drawings of elderly superheroes are really fun. My one criticism is that Buffy is not drawn stylishly enough -- that's a woman who won't let aging get in the way of wearing a trend.

  • College libraries and archives are starting to hire "Wikipedians in residence," a person whose job is to write and edit Wikipedia entries on topics relevant to the library's collection, and to prepare public domain media for sharing on Wikimedia. This is an awesome idea. Harvard is hiring one right now, and they should definitely be paying more than the $16 an hour for this they're offering.

  • Here's some tips on how to write a good sex scene, with #5 being the most critical. (Although I have to say, you can write a good sex scene whose point is NOT to turn the reader on.)

  • Melville House Publishing has the best writeup of the current dustup in science fiction fandom, starting with the title: The only real space books are the intolerant space books, insists intolerant publisher of space books

  • Huffington Post has a fun roundup of facts about various popular fonts (Becca is a diehard Garamond person).

  • The Oxford English Dictionary announced its quarterly update of new words, which is exciting news for word nerds. A lot of the new terms are about ladies, and a bunch are derivations of "cunt." Brb changing my last name to "Clawecuncte."

  • Walter Dean Myers wrote a lovely, thoughtful, quietly angry piece for the New York Times on the lack of racial and economic diversity in children's literatureAs I discovered who I was, a black teenager in a white-dominated world, I saw that these characters, these lives, were not mine. I didn’t want to become the “black” representative, or some shining example of diversity. What I wanted, needed really, was to become an integral and valued part of the mosaic that I saw around me.

  • Becca sent me the link for this website, and anonymous author of TheBestDinosaur.com, I love you. You are right. Never surrender.

Episode 21: Hard-Working Hummingbirds

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    She-Hulk #2, Hawkeye #15, Loki: Agent of Asgard #2 and Avengers Assemble #24 | "She-Hulk" and "Loki" introduce us to some new characters with a lot of promise, "Avengers Assemble" gives us the Spider-Girl/real Avenger pair-up we've all been waiting for, and "Hawkeye" revisits Clint's Council of Exes. Overall, a really strong week in comics with a lot of consistent storytelling, art and characterization.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    This week, we're talking about books that make us want to go to there: books with a great sense of place, from the general (small-town Southern America, "the big city") to the specific (Texas and New England, surprise), from the quaint (Prince Edward Island) to the exotic (Prague. Prague Prague Prague).
  • Special Guest Kelly Sue DeConnick
    Comic book writer Kelly Sue DeConnick ("Pretty Deadly," "Captain Marvel," "Avengers Assemble") joins us for a discussion of popular culture, relationships, the creative process and, of course, all the exciting projects she's working on ("Bitch Planet," we're ready. Also check out Kelly Sue's Pinterest board for the series. Hello, leather). We are so grateful to Kelly Sue for taking the time to talk with us. We really enjoyed the interview and think you will, too! Please take a minute to check out Kelly Sue's Web site. You can also find her work wherever fine comics are sold.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    Courtesy of our guest, "I Eat Boys Like You for Breakfast" by Ida Maria

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 20

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Episode 20: A Bunch of A-holes

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    She-Hulk #1 and all the movies! | A new run of "She-Hulk," story by Charles Soule and art by Javier Pulido, leads us to discuss whether men can write female characters (in short: yes, duh), the wonder of female characters who don't have to represent all womankind, and how we'd like to spend a night out on the town with She-Hulk, even though we'd regret it in the morning. We've got lots of Marvel movie news this week, too, with the announcement of the development of a Black Widow movie (call us, Kevin Feige, we've got ideas), Fantastic Four casting news (Michael B. Jordan! Miles Teller! Haters to the left!), and the FIRST OFFICIAL GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY TRAILER. I repeat: first official Guardians of the Galaxy trailer. Set aside some time; you're gonna wanna watch it more than once. For one thing, the music is pretty great. Also: this.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    This week we talk about picture book biographies, which we here at TWiL heartily endorse as being infinitely superior to biographies for adults. Want to learn more about U.S. political figures, TV chefs, labor activists, or Old West crime-fighters? There's a picture book for that.
  • Real Ladies: Athletes
    In honor of the 2014 Winter Olympics, we talk about real lady athletes Althea Gibson and Bobbi Gibb. Althea Gibson was the first person of color to win Wimbledon, among many other impressive achievements, including a second career in professional golf. Y'know, like you do. Bobbi Gibb is the first woman to run the Boston Marathon, in 1966, and I defy you to read about her experience without feeling at least a little warm and fuzzy. Turns out, the marathon community is pretty awesome. It'd have to be, really, 'cause the actual running part seems terrible. Also, careful not to jump too much while you're skiing, because your uterus might fall out. And there's this ESPN article, "You Can Only Hope to Contain Them," on the science of sports and boobs.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Weed Instead of Roses" by Ashley Monroe

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 19

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Episode 19: #gothgymnastsochi2014

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Saga #18, Black Widow #3, Loki Agent of Asgard #1, Ms. Marvel #1 and Avengers Assemble #23 | "Saga," "Black Widow" and "Avengers Assemble" serve up more of the same we've come to expect from them. Unfortunately, with "Saga" and "Black Widow," it just results in boredom. Otherwise, it's a banner week with two great debuts from Marvel and the consistently excellent "Avengers Assemble." If we start a petition for a Wolverine/Spider-Girl team-up spin-off, you'll sign, right?
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Required Reading | We discuss the compulsory reading we enjoyed, whether it was assigned by a teacher or chosen by a book club. Surprise! We're nerds who actually liked a lot of what we read in school.
  • American Library Association Youth Media Awards
    The ALA Youth Media Awards were announced on January 27 and we've got thoughts. Namely, how on Earth did Locomotive win the Caldecott? We can't with that; all three of the Honor books are ten times the book Locomotive is. We also discuss the inherent flaws of any award system and this one in particular, including: the marginalization of children's books by and about people of color to special awards at the expense of being considered for the "prestige" awards; the Newbury equivalent of Oscar-baiting; and the disregard for audience appeal in recognizing children's book excellence. For more on the history of children's lit, check out this great New Yorker article.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Timber" by Ke$ha feat. Pitbull covered by Postmodern Jukebox

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 18

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Episode 18: Woman Alone With Wifi

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week in "Woman Alone With Wifi:"

  • This Week in Comics
    Pretty Deadly #4, Black Widow #2 and Hawkeye #16 (yes, we know) | Allison reports that Pretty Deadly is becoming slightly more comprehensible, though it's still got a lot going on. You True Grit fans (Becca is not among you) should give it a go. Black Widow is meeting and maybe even exceeding our expectations and you know we always love an Annie Wu issue of Hawkeye. Seriously, if the Clint Barton issues haven't sucked you in, you can easily jump in for the Kate-centric stories without missing a beat. Think about it.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Coming in 2014 | We talk about our most anticipated titles of 2014. We're both super jazzed for Dreams of Gods & Monsters by TWiL hair icon Laini Taylor. Other series entries coming in 2014 include Sinner by Maggie Stiefvater and The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey. Becca's always on the hook for author Chang-rae Lee. Allison's looking forward to picture books Sam and Dave Dig a Hole and President Taft is Stuck in the Bath by Mac Barnett and the Newbury and Caldecott Award winners, which we'll talk more about next episode. Finally, Becca is on the edge of her seat for the reprint of The Windflower, a romance novel originally published in the '80s that's been out of print for 20 years (it was one of the 100 most sought after out-of-print books of 2012). Search for it on Smart Bitches, Trashy Books (note especially this cover retrospective) and while you're there, read their funniest review ever (SO NSFW).
  • Pop Culture Comfort Food
    We talk about the pop culture we consume when we're home sick, are trapped inside by the Polar Vortex or just plain ol' have the sads. Then we try to figure out what that pop culture has in common that makes it so comforting, with little success. But, hey, it makes us feel better and that's what matters. What do you watch or read when you're feeling down? And if quiet British dramas are one of your comfort foods, check out this Eddie Izzard sketch about the differences between British and American movies. And then see Colin Firth and Ben Barnes act the sketch out on the set of Dorian Gray.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    Friend of the Show Julia M. recs "Love Letter" by Clairy Browne & The Bangin' Rackettes | If you'd like to recommend shit we should be listening to, e-mail an .mp3 or .wav file to thisweekinladies at gmail dot com.

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 17

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • Here are two lists of women poised to do great things in 2014: one from TIME and one from Flavorwire. I appreciate that the Flavorwire story starts thusly: Look: I don’t like writing these lists either. I long for the day in which I will no longer have to write them, when women will just be the people participating in the culture as full human beings like everyone else, because the culture will have quit giving disproportionate airtime to the other gender.
  • In this video, three Irish dudes make the Friends theme song a poignant and beautiful reflection on the way that adulthood can fail to live up to our expectations. You know, just like the show.
  • Over at Code Switch, Gene Demby takes a look at how race influences superheroes, and on the X-Men as allegories for minorities. There's a lot of great stuff here, and all the images that go with this are fascinating (the Beyonce-Emma Frost comparison is amazing.)
  • Here's an "um, actually" about how to pronounce Smaug. Feel free to deploy this knowledge at parties.
  • In more "words are neat!" news, researchers are studying how people on Twitter shorten words, and how those shortenings become standard and spread.
  • Your cat thinks you are a cat. A giant, giant cat. (Related: If you live in LA, you can go see a cat-themed art show, which sounds A+.)
  • Tasbeeh Herwees wrote a gorgeous piece for The Toast about her name. The post is tagged "no you're crying" and that is totally on point.
  • Amanda Hess wrote a long, difficult, important piece on harassment of women online, and the way social media companies and law enforcement handle the issue: All of these online offenses are enough to make a woman want to click away from Twitter, shut her laptop, and power down her phone. Sometimes, we do withdraw: Pew found that from 2000 to 2005, the percentage of Internet users who participate in online chats and discussion groups dropped from 28 percent to 17 percent, “entirely because of women’s fall off in participation.” But for many women, steering clear of the Internet isn’t an option. We use our devices to find supportive communities, make a living, and construct safety nets. For a woman like me, who lives alone, the Internet isn’t a fun diversion—it is a necessary resource for work and interfacing with friends, family, and, sometimes, law enforcement officers in an effort to feel safer from both online and offline violence.
  • Since it's Martin Luther King, Jr. Day here in the U.S., we'll close with "Letter From a Birmingham Jail."

Episode 17: It's Not Us, It's You

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Black Widow #1, Marvel Now! Point One, Young Avengers #15, Sex Criminals #4, and Revival | We do go on about comics this week, from promising beginnings to disappointing endings. We also broaden our horizons with Revival, an ongoing series from Image that already has two trades for easy catch-up consumption. As Allison says, it's like Fargo, if Frances McDormand's character was less competent. Highly recommend. Finally, as promised, the comic book cover that will ruin you for all other covers.
  • This Week in Teen Wolf
    This week in Teen Wolf, we talk about TV breakups. Because we broke up with Teen Wolf. Apologies to those of you who were eagerly anticipating the return of this segment, which I assume is approximately none of you. The scales of hotness of actors and dumbness of plot finally tipped against us. Tell us: what shows have you broken up with and why?
  • Our Favorite YA Heroines
    We consider our favorite heroines from young adult literature and wonder what makes a great heroine. Is she likable? Relatable? Believable? Regardless of why, we think you'll enjoy reading about these ladies:
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry" by Cowboy Junkies

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 16

 Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Happy New Year! Do you think we'll ever stop saying we live in the future, or is that out of the question since the numbers are just gonna keep getting bigger?

  • To kick off 2014, here's Sir Patrick Stewart mooing in different accents. Begin as you mean to go on and all.
  • TWIL favorite Mac Barnett gives us this guide on how to write a picture bookRhyming is tricky — don’t attempt it unless you are a skilled versifier. It’s awful when a poem for kids doesn’t scan. Because picture books are so often read aloud, if the meter malfunctions or a rhyme doesn’t actually rhyme, it’s a disaster. The parent or teacher ends up looking foolish. [THIS IS SO TRUE.]
  • John Scalzi functionally wrote fanfiction about himself and a variety of British actors. Dude, we know that feel.
  • At Romance Novels for Feminists, Courtney Milan (who we talked about in our last show) discusses how she became a more feminist writerWhy was I accepting this without question? Why was I writing this way? Why was I writing something I didn't believe, and what did it say that I'd internalized something like that enough to regurgitate it without thinking?
  • Kelly Sue DeConnick is rebooting Barbarella this year.
  • Alyssa Rosenberg writes about Will Ferrell, important feministTime and time again, Ferrell’s manly men are tripped up by their own puffery, ruining relationships they didn’t realize they valued until after they’d smashed them, and coasting on privilege that gives them an excuse not to develop skills that would make them better news anchors, better race-car drivers, and better partners and fathers, too.
  • The American Dialect Society's word of 2013 was "because." Because Internet.

Episode 16: For Your Consideration

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Young Avengers #14, Avengers Assemble #22 and Saga #17 | Three of our favorite series continue to deliver great characters, great art, and great dialog, but Young Avengers and Saga were both a little thin on plot this month. I mean, come on, Saga, "the opposite of war is fucking"? That doesn't even make sense. Stay tuned for three new series coming in early 2014: Black Widow, Loki: Agent of Asgard and Ms. Marvel (the latter two of which we've discussed on the show previously).
  • This Week in Television
    Our favorite holiday specials! | Becca was hipster before it was cool, so her favorite Christmas special is that one Rankin & Bass stop-motion movie you've never heard of, The Leprechauns' Christmas Gold. Allison goes in for the classics, A Charlie Brown Christmas and How the Grinch Stole Christmas! We also give honorable mentions to Dr. Who episode "A Christmas Carol," Lady Gaga & the Muppets' Holiday Spectacular, and Punkin Chunkin, while wondering how the Muppets were able to work with Lady Gaga after she made clothes out of their brethren on not one, but two, previous occasions.
  • TWiLLies: The Best of 2013
    We award TWiLLies to the best books, comic books, makeovers and more of 2013! Find out what our favorites were and hit the comments below to tell us yours! We also make our 2014 Pop Culture Resolutions. We hope that recording them for posterity will keep us honest! If you're looking for more Best (and Worst) of 2013 lists, TIME's got you covered. Or you can read Emily Nussbaum at the New Yorker talking about why she hates top-ten lists.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Beast" by Nico Vega

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 15

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Episode 15: She Blinded Me With Science

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Young Avengers #13 and Caring About Comics | Here be spoilers! Billy saves Teddy with the power of love. Miss America Chavez and Becca are both way on board. Allison: not so much. This issue's got break-ups, make-ups, confessions, and more. But still no Tommy. YA is our only comic this week, but we do discuss the Wonder Woman casting news and whether or not it's okay to care about popular culture (It is. Duh.). For more on that subject, check out the Alyssa Rosenberg piece on ThinkProgress that prompted our discussion.
  • This Week in Television
    We revisit our fall television picks from our eighth episode, "Lost in the Stacks," and hand down our verdicts on S.H.I.E.L.D., Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Mom, Ground Floor, Mob City, Reign, Almost Human and Once Upon a Time in Wonderland. Now, if only we can get the networks to agree. Let us know in the comments what shows we're missing out on! You can find Frock Talk here and on Twitter here.
  • Stretching the Definition of "Scientist"
    Every fifth episode, we talk about real ladies. This week: scientists! Becca talks about 19th-century paleontologist Mary Anning, a woman who not only made her first major fossil discovery at age 12, but also served as the inspiration for the tongue twister, "she sells seashells by the sea shore." Oh, to have that on one's resume! Allison, in part because of her love of Captain Marvel and Almost Astronauts by Tanya Lee Stone, talks about the Mercury 13. The story of this group of aspiring astronauts is a little heartbreaking, but a lot amazing and inspiring. You will have more heroes after this.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Pony" by Kasey Chambers

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 14

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • Over at The Hairpin, Anne Helen Petersen writes about what it means that the American Girl company is retiring Molly (the doll I owned, and my favorite): I know Molly’s just a doll. But those of us who’ve owned or coveted American Girl dolls know better: she’s a message, an attitude, a way of being in the world. You might not have endured World War II deprivation, but you were attracted, for whatever reason, to its dynamics. Maybe it was the simplicity, maybe it was the unity. Maybe it was because Molly’s personality somehow seemed to matter more than what she owned or didn’t. The doll was a commodity, but Molly’s narrative so conveniently made you forget it.
  • A Linguist Explains the Rules of Summoning Benedict Cumberbatch: This is everything.
  • Zak Snyder has cast The Fast and the Furious' Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, and now Becca's mad at him because that means she has to see his dumb movie.
  • A scientist in England has created a climate simulation of Tolkien's Middle Earth, because science is awesome. Apparently Mordor's climate is a lot like west Texas, which means they grow real good beef in Mordor.
  • Let Captain Picard serenade you with a Christmas classic.
  • Friend of the show Ramon Ramirez posted a great longread about the Angola Rodeo, a Louisiana event in which prisoners at a maximum security prison compete in rodeo eventsThink to track and field day in grade school: Rodeo Sunday is an opportunity to play outside.
  • Please enjoy these maps of famous houses from literature. Whither Hogwarts?
  • Slate has a great series covering American events in the tone foreign cultures are usually described in, and they tackled ThanksgivingVirtually the only break from the eating comes when Americans gather around the television to watch a special presentation of football, the country’s most popular sport. If the brutal violence of the game seems at odds with the holiday’s emphasis on thanks and good will, no one seems to mind.
  • Kate Middleton met Idris Elba and she reacted basically the same way you would.
  • And finally, a tribute to Paul Walker.