Pop My Culture
  • August5th

    Paul F. Tompkins interview on Pop My Culture Podcast 2013

    Paul F. Tompkins (“Mr. Show,” “Best Week Ever”) returns for his third solo episode and chats with Cole and Vanessa about Comic Con, Kemosabe the Porcupine, classic cocktails, celebs using Kickstarter, Real Housewives star Teresa Giudice, arms vs. legs, Dick’s Last Resort, Speakeasy, the voice of the busy dialtone, Dead Authors podcast, Cat Deeley, a field of Zac Efron, traveling magic acts, flying monkey attacks and Paul’s encounter with King of Kong villain Billy Mitchell!

    Leave your answer to the firsts question (the first time you remember gambling) on our website for a chance to win a Mr. Show DVD signed by Paul!

    Freshly Popped


    Paul F. Tompkins with hosts Vanessa Ragland and Cole Stratton

    Mr. Show DVD signed by Paul F. Tompkins giveaway by PMC podcast

  • August5th



    RED 2
    2013, 1 hr. 56 min
    Grade: C+

    It’s always weird when a film that was a fairly moderate success at the box office suddenly gets a sequel — such was the case of 2010′s RED, an lightly entertaining secret agent action comedy with a splendid cast and a cute conceit. Kicking off the dog days of summer, RED 2 (that stands for Retired Extremely Dangerous) finds assassin Frank Moses (Bruce Willis, at his scowliest) and his now-girlfriend Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker) in hiding, stuck in a bit of a relationship rut until good ol’ paranoid Marvin (John Malkovich) tries to lure him back into action. One Costco trip and fake death later, the trio find themselves on the run from pretty much every nation’s government, all concerning an operation codenamed Nightshade that they have no knowledge of but were supposedly involved with. Hot on their trail are Korean assassin/snappy dresser Han (Byung-hun Lee, of the G.I. Joe movies), who has a long-standing beef with Moses and relishes the opportunity to knock him off; steely-eyed American government clean-up man Jack Horton (Neil McDonough, picking up where he left off after Justified); Russian agent and ex-Moses lover Katja (Catherine Zeta-Jones, at her tannest); and MI-6 hitwoman Victoria (Dame Helen Mirren, still the hottest thing in heels). What follows is a lot of globehopping, a murky plot involving a devastating explosive device, and lots of chase scenes and gunfights. Oh, and lots and lots of none-too-subtle product placement from the likes of Papa John’s and Pringles. Read More

  • July30th



    The To Do List
    2013, 1 hr. 44 min
    Grade: C

    The To Do List is a raunchy comedy that takes place in the ’90s — so much so, that it beats you over the head with it. 1993, in fact, which is precisely when I was about to finish high school and head off to college, so the era has a very special place in my heart. It’s one thing to set a film in a time period to dial up some nostalgia — but constantly calling it out instead of just existing in it can make one crazy. Such is the case of this fairly entertaining but troubled comedy from writer/director Maggie Carey, who seems to have a soft spot for the early 90s that, in addition to soundtrack littered with The Cranberries, The Gin Blossoms and Big Head Todd and the Monsters (a LIVE version of Bittersweet, to boot), constantly references things like pagers, Street Fighter II, Growing Pains and Saved By The Bell. One character, who is obsessed with the movie Beaches, remarks that she’s “got it on VHS,” which is a statement that pretty much no one said in 1993, as there wasn’t any other format options — a simple “rented it” would have sufficed. This might sound like I’m nitpicking, but calling attention to these things became more and more irksome every time. Let me notice the hypercolor shirt, you don’t have to have someone remark, “You look good in hypercolor.” Read More

  • July29th



    The Wolverine
    2013, 2 hrs, 6 min.
    Grade: B

    Full confession: I’m a bit of a nut for all things X-Men. As a teenager, I collected comics (primarily Marvel), and the X-Men franchise was by far my favorite, collecting issues 200-300, roughly, of the Uncanny series, as well as spin offs like X-Factor, Power Pack, and Wolverine, as well as whatever cross overs hit the shelves (Every once in a while, it’s “refreshing” to see Logan battle, say, Ghost Rider). So when the films starts popping up in the cinemas, I was excited while trepidatious — the first and second films were entertaining, while X3 suffered under Brett Ratner, and the first Wolverine spin-off was an unmitigated disaster. Read More

  • July26th

    Mel Harris interview on Pop My Culture podcast

    Mel Harris (“Thirtysomething,” “K-9″) joins Cole and Vanessa to chat about the Royal Baby, Dennis Farina, Ludlum novels, Corey Monteith, Stargate SG-1, Paul Giamatti joining Downton Abbey, The $100,000 Pyramid, Placerville, Betty White, John Lithgow, The Pep Boys, Supermarket Sweep, Comic Con, being a twin, and Ed Begley Jr.’s awesome business card.

    Leave your answer to the firsts question (the first game show you remember watching a bunch) on our website for a chance to win a DVD of “The Retrievers” signed by Mel and Cole (they did the movie together!).

    Freshly Popped


    Mel Harris with hosts Vanessa Ragland and Cole Stratton

    The Retrievers DVD signed by Mel Harris and Cole Stratton

  • July22nd



    This past weekend, over 100,000 badge-holders descended upon San Diego’s convention center and Gaslamp quarter for that yearly ode to all things geeky (and not so geeky) — with hundreds of panels celebrating TV, Film, illustrated arts, podcasts, you name it. Comic Con 2013 started off with a bang (or more of a whimper for Hall H, the line of which became the con’s most popular hotel Friday through Sunday) on Thursday, and the co-host of the podcast, Cole Stratton, was there to take in as much as he could. Vanessa, sadly, was tied up finishing up her classes at The Groundlings and was unable to attend this year. What follows is a journal-ish recanting of Cole’s adventures in and out of the Con! Read More