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A sneak peak of the upcoming Showtime edition ofThis American Life
February 23, 2007 7:33 PM   Subscribe

A sneak peak of the upcoming Showtime edition of This American Life (direct QT link).
posted by JPowers (37 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
EXCITEMENT MAYONNAISE
posted by boo_radley at 7:52 PM on February 23, 2007


This American Life on Showtime website.
posted by ericb at 7:54 PM on February 23, 2007


First there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is.
posted by jet_silver at 7:55 PM on February 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


"Can't really deny the world their Judas."

"How much can you do, how can you fall in love with a chicken? There's really nothing there. But a pig! I mean, think about a pig! What is there not to love about a pig?"

Oh, man, I didn't know about this! It looks fantastic. Thanks, JPowers.
posted by ibmcginty at 7:56 PM on February 23, 2007


I'm reserving judgement...for now. I really want this to work, but I'm nervous it won't. The original is great and beloved by me, I think in great part due to the intimacy of radio as a medium. Not sure if all the wonderfulness translates to television. Perhaps if they use similar pacing. I just don't know...
posted by Knicke at 8:17 PM on February 23, 2007


This American Life is an awesome radio show, and I am looking forward to this. Thanks.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 8:18 PM on February 23, 2007


I love the radio show. I have no idea how it's going to play on television (and I won't watch it, along with anything else on tv) but I wish them the best. Ira Glass rocks.
posted by mullingitover at 8:20 PM on February 23, 2007


Wow. Cool, I love TAL, I hope that they don't screw it up for TV.
posted by octothorpe at 8:23 PM on February 23, 2007


I'VE BOYCOTTED THE TV'S, AS SO CANNOT WATCH THIS FINE PROGRAMMING THANKYOUBYE.
posted by rsanheim at 8:32 PM on February 23, 2007


Okay, anyone who can quote Donovan gets a gold star in my book. Unfortunately, we don't get Showtime in Korea (or NPR) so I'm stuck with the podcast version but that's cool by me.
posted by Brittanie at 8:39 PM on February 23, 2007


You have to pay now to read the New York Times article I read about a year and half ago about Glass and the idea for developing the show. I didn't pay, but from what I remember, Glass himself had a few misgivings about the idea.

I don't have a tv, so won't be watching. But I like Glass, too, and wish them success.
posted by trip and a half at 8:49 PM on February 23, 2007


I wish I had Showtime....I hope it will be available for download. Thank you Mr. Powers. You've introduced me to MetaFilter, gmail, digg, firefox, del.icio.us, css, Arrested Development, and now this. I owe you my life.
posted by sicem07 at 8:58 PM on February 23, 2007 [1 favorite]


"I don't watch television, notice I said 'television' and not 'T.V.' because nicknames are for friends and television is NO friend of MINE!!"
posted by ColdChef at 9:03 PM on February 23, 2007 [5 favorites]


I will be getting Showtime and paying whatever the fuck they want me to pay monthly, just so I can see this show.
posted by ColdChef at 9:04 PM on February 23, 2007


We at Showtime Online express our apologies; however, these pages are intended for access only from within the United States.

WTF?

I'm a devout fan of the TAL podcast. It feels like one of my few connections to civilization.
posted by alidarbac at 9:13 PM on February 23, 2007


This almost makes me wish I hadn't sworn off cable about eight years ago. I haven't sworn off television. That's just silly. After MST3K was cancelled I decided I no longer wanted to pay for television if I had no control over what was available to me. Obviously my boycotting cable TV hasn't adversely affected it at all. If my principles could be bruised, I would be. Nowadays, I just can't afford it. I can barely afford the Internet.

Still, I love the radio show and hope the best for their voyage to TV. I don't see how this can fail. TAL is known for telling good stories. Whether a story comes with pictures or just sound, if it's a well-told story, it'll find its audience.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:34 PM on February 23, 2007


incidently Ira Glass will be on Fresh Air on Monday. The topic?

Feb. 26 ยท How do you translate an intimate, conversational and great radio show to the TV screen? We talk with Ira Glass about the challenges of creating a Showtime version of This American Life

posted by edgeways at 9:50 PM on February 23, 2007


I hope it's as good as the show, but I'm predisposed to hate it, because I assume it's a big part of the reason that 80% of the radio shows in the last year or so have been repeats.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:02 PM on February 23, 2007


There was a story about it on All Things Considered back in December.
posted by dw at 10:07 PM on February 23, 2007


I used to work in public radio... in which capacity I met Ira Glass more than once, and seen him perform live (amazing - and no, none of this makes me an expert or gives my opinion any special validity, just by the by)... I have to admit I'm really, really dubious about this move (and this trailer has done nothing to diminish that). I think it is going to acquire an unfortunate freak show aspect (though I'm sure with a deeply shiny, Arbus/Avedon sort of superficial veneer to it from the looks of things) and I fear much of the humanism and sense of universality will be lost in the visual novelty of Art Reality Teevee. I do hope I'm wrong, and I'm sure parts of it will be great, but I think a lot of the radio magic will just not translate and much less fortunate things will appear in its stead.
posted by nanojath at 10:18 PM on February 23, 2007


Am I the only one here who can't stand TAL and the mincing, femmy voice of Ira Glass?
posted by keswick at 10:39 PM on February 23, 2007


It's "sneak peek," dammit. You sneak a peek at something that's hidden or obscured.

If you intended to smuggle a mountaintop or gnome's hat, then fine.
posted by turducken at 10:44 PM on February 23, 2007


During the pledge drive during the winter they were giving away dvd's during TAL locally. I had already giving so I didn't get to see it. But from what I understand it will be shows that have already run on the radio in the show. I think the first show is going to have this story in it:

Act Two. If By Chance We Meet Again. Ralph and Sandra Fisher, who run a show-animal business in Texas, had a beloved Brahmin bull named Chance. Chance was the gentlest bull they'd ever seen, more like a pet dog than a bull. They loved him, kids loved him. He had a long career in movies, on TV, performing at parties. When he finally died, Ralph and Cindy were devastated. Around that same time, scientists at Texas A & M University were looking for animal subjects for a cloning project. They already had some tissue from Chance because they'd treated him for an illness. So Ralph and Cindy offered up Chance's DNA for the experiment. Second Chance was born. And he was, eerily, just like Chance. Except he wasn't. Which they found out the hard way. (21 minutes)

Ira said he had misgivings about the TV show, but this particular story is the one that changed his mind. -- he said that when the man was in the hospital there was no way to convey over the radio the emotions that were on the ranchers face.
posted by bigmusic at 11:34 PM on February 23, 2007 [2 favorites]


Am I the only one here who can't stand...

Oh wow, keswick hates something.
posted by nanojath at 11:54 PM on February 23, 2007


Am I the only one here who can't stand TAL and the mincing, femmy voice of Ira Glass?
posted by keswick at 10:39 PM PST on February 23


Clearly. And now it's our turn to mock you.

Ira said he had misgivings about the TV show, but this particular story is the one that changed his mind. -- he said that when the man was in the hospital there was no way to convey over the radio the emotions that were on the ranchers face.
posted by bigmusic at 11:34 PM PST on February 23


This is exactly why I'm excited about the show. They're a smart group of people who know better than just about anyone else in the world how to make radio work; now we get to see what they can do with visual presentation. Maybe they'll screw it up horribly and end up with a freak show. I'll be disappointed, but it won't take away from the hundreds of hours of great radio they've produced. And I'd be more disappointed if they didn't try.
posted by medialyte at 12:08 AM on February 24, 2007


The first four episodes seem to have been pre-released to critics. This review sounds very encouraging.
posted by tfmm at 2:46 AM on February 24, 2007


bigmusic : "But from what I understand it will be shows that have already run on the radio in the show."

I think it will probably be a mix. Chance the bull was noticeable in the preview, but none of the other stories appear familiar, and I'm a fairly rabid listener.

Then again, that Chance story was pretty memorable.
posted by graventy at 6:26 AM on February 24, 2007


Metafilter: I hate mass media, especially when there are pictures
posted by ill3 at 6:51 AM on February 24, 2007 [1 favorite]


awesome.
posted by Tones at 7:28 AM on February 24, 2007


Is it just me or does Ira Glass look like all the "Kids in the Hall" fucked and made a baby?
posted by ColdChef at 8:26 AM on February 24, 2007 [4 favorites]


Wow. Really looking forward to this. Ira Glass is my favorite Philip Glass cousin.
posted by inoculatedcities at 9:31 AM on February 24, 2007


I tried really hard to work on this show. Unfortunately, the closest I could get was to work on the reality show that cutting next door. Man, that sucked. Every once in a while, Ira would poke his head in (he came by only once in a while) and say "Is this where we're screening?" and I would sigh and say no.

I've seen it, though. And it's good. The first episode is fantastic. The cinematography is incredible, but doesn't get in the way. That story about the cow is probably the best one. And in the third episode, they got Chris Ware to do an animation, something I thought would never happen ever. And it's great.

If you're interested, the guy who made this work as a TV show is Chris Wilcha, and he also made a little film called "The Target Shoots First" which was had a lot of buzz for a while. Check it out.
posted by fungible at 11:53 AM on February 24, 2007 [2 favorites]


wow, Chris Ware.
posted by empath at 12:26 PM on February 24, 2007


I think one of the segments toward the end of the trailer must be the Weiner's Circle, a hot dog joint in Chicago. The screaming black lady hot dog chef -- a Weiner's Circle trademark.
posted by Mid at 2:37 PM on February 24, 2007


"One thing you have to remember, Canalou is not Sikeston, never has been, never will be."

I live in Sikeston. When I heard that as TAL's ending quote yrs ago, that was the coolest radio moment I've ever experienced.
posted by wrapper at 4:08 PM on February 24, 2007


Every once in a while, Ira would poke his head in (he came by only once in a while) and say "Is this where we're screening?" and I would sigh and say no.

Now that there is your classic missed opportunity for greatness. Or, you know, a restraining order...
posted by nanojath at 5:50 PM on February 24, 2007


Here's the Fresh Air show with Ira Glass talking about the show.
posted by mathowie at 1:59 PM on February 26, 2007


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