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Fresh Air

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Fresh Air with Terry Gross is a Peabody Award-winning magazine of contemporary arts and issues. The show gives interviews as much time as needed, and complements them with comments from well-known critics and commentators. Fresh Air is produced at WHYY in Philadelphia and broadcast nationally by NPR.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. Film critic David Edelstein has a review of the new film "Manchester By The Sea," the third feature written and directed by playwright Kenneth Lonergan. The film is named for a Massachusetts town to which the protagonist returns to bury his brother and reconnect with his teenage nephew. It stars Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams and Lucas Hedges. DAVID EDELSTEIN, BYLINE: In Kenneth Lonergan's ...

There's a tendency to approach a posthumous collection of work by an esteemed "writer's writer" with respectful courtesy, but Stanley Elkin's essays demand a rowdier response from readers. They're weird and spirited, full of literal piss and vinegar. Pieces of Soap is the name of this collection and writer Sam Lipsyte, in his introduction, rightly says that reading Elkin makes you realize "how lazy most writing is." It doesn't matter what the ostensible subject of these essays may be: they...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. I can't think of anyone who knows more about TV history than our own TV critic David Bianculli. He's just written a new book called "The Platinum Age Of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific." It's a genre-by-genre history discussing the shows that were turning points in dramas, sitcoms, Westerns, children's programs and so on with a list of the...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. My guest, James Fallows, has followed the presidential campaign and is analyzing the results from several different angles. He's been a national correspondent for The Atlantic magazine for 35 years. Since May, he's kept a daily blog called - since May, he's kept a blog called "The Daily Trump," which he describes as a time capsule chronicling how Donald Trump has broken the norms...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air .

Writer and actress Issa Rae is upfront about the fact that she doesn't always fit in. She tells Fresh Air 's Terry Gross that she was so socially uncomfortable and introverted growing up that one day she wrote the phrase "I'm awkward. And black" in her journal, and it was a revelatory moment. "I knew I was black, obviously, but the 'awkward' part really just defined me in a sense," Rae says. "That felt like an identity that I had not seen reflected in television or film before, or at least in...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. Our next guests are the creators of HBO's futuristic series "Westworld." It's set in a theme park inspired by movie Westerns in which wealthy tourists come to act out their Western fantasies. Those fantasies usually involve shootouts, showdowns, fistfights and sex. Since the visitors can't shoot real people, they enact their fantasies with lifelike androids. After an android is shot...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. My guest is Garry Trudeau, the creator of the long-running, syndicated comic strip "Doonesbury." In 1975, it became the first strip syndicated to daily newspapers to win a Pulitzer Prize. "Doonesbury" debuted in daily papers in 1970. It was the first daily strip that satirized politics and culture through the lives of young men and women who were part of the youth counterculture....

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week: 'Late Show' Host Says He Has Finally Found His Post-'Colbert Report' Voice: The comic initially avoided joking about politics on The Late Show for fear that he would fall into his Colbert Report...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. My guest is the winner of this year's Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, Viet Thanh Nguyen. He's now nominated for a National Book Award for his companion nonfiction book "Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam And The Memory Of War." His novel, "The Sympathizer," is set during and just after the war in Vietnam and is told in the form of a forced confession written by a spy who worked for the North...

Before I talk about the new historical film Loving from writer/director Jeff Nichols, I have to confess: I don't usually enjoy civil rights movies. Don't get me wrong, as a descendant of slaves, I fully appreciate the civil rights movement itself. It's just a tough genre to pull off artistically. It's far too easy for these films to succumb to chin-to-the-sky self-righteous squinting at the heavens. What many films based on historical events lack is the uncertainty of the moment they're...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. My guest, George Packer, has been writing about the presidential election for The New Yorker, where he's a staff writer. His latest article is titled "Hillary Clinton And The Populist Revolt." It reflects on the questions - how did the Democrats lose the white working class? Why did many of these voters move to the Republican Party? And can Hillary win them back? The article...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. Mel Gibson has directed a new movie called "Hacksaw Ridge." He won an Oscar for the second feature he directed, the 1995 Scottish war epic "Braveheart." And he went on to make two more brutal films, "The Passion Of The Christ" and "Apocalypto." "Hacksaw Ridge" is also graphically violent, set on the battlefield during World War II. But the hero, played by Andrew Garfield, is a pacifist. Film critic...

It has been more than a year since Stephen Colbert took over as host of CBS' The Late Show , and he's finally feeling comfortable being himself and not a character. Before The Late Show , Colbert spent nine years playing the role of a self-important blowhard on Comedy Central's The Colbert Report. He tells Fresh Air 's Terry Gross that he initially shied away from discussing politics or current events on The Late Show in an effort to differentiate himself from his Colbert persona. "It took me...

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air . TERRY GROSS, HOST: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. My guest, Donald Glover, created, co-writes and stars in the FX series "Atlanta," which is a hybrid of comedy and drama set on the fringes of Atlanta's hip-hop scene. The first season's finale is tonight. Glover plays Earn, short for Earnest, a Princeton dropout who's broke. When we first meet him, he has an alienating job working at an airport kiosk, trying to sign people up for a...

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