This week, Dahlia and Amy talk about Kurbo, a weight loss app for children. The app is from Weight Watchers and they claim its purpose is to help children become healthier but experts say that an app like Kurbo can cause children to have an unhealthy relationship with food, promote eating disorders, and cause extra stress. The app feels like a ploy to create future consumers for the $72 billion diet industry and it’s so wrong. WATCH “What We Do in the Shadows” (both the movie and the FX TV series) take a hilarious mockumentary lens to vampire living. READ Yukiko Motoya’s short story collection, “The Loneliest Bodybuilder” is quirky, surreal, and so much fun to read. A must-read for contemporary Japanese literature. LISTEN “Skin & Bone” by Ambrosia Parsley
Backtalk: Back to School
This week, Dahlia and Amy get into the back-to-school season. We spend more than a decade in school developing our worldview and learning how to be decent human beings. What happens when the people in charge of our education are closed-minded and unwilling to accept social progress? From schools with Confederate namesakes to creating a more inclusive curriculum, here’s a look at all the ways our education can shape us. WATCH Based on the Patricia Highsmith romance novel, “The Price of Salt” (1952), “Carol” is a gorgeous film starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara about unrequited lesbian love in an unaccepting time. READ “Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self delusion” by Jia Tolentino covers internet culture, scammers, reality shows, and so much more. This essay collection is truly an instant classic of the worst decade. LISTEN “Darkest Hour” by Joy Crookes
Backtalk: The Power of the People
This week, Dahlia and Amy dig into the mass protest movements across the globe. From Puerto Rico to Portland, Oregon, people are showing up to have their voices heard en masse, demonstrating that the power of people to bring down oppressive systems is inspiring and necessary. READ The New York Time’s 1619 Project is a reframing of American history, centering on the first enslaved Africans and the effects of slavery that can still be felt to this day. The project is a reminder that history isn’t static and can only benefit from more perspectives. WATCH HBO’s Years and Years is a near-future dystopia centered on the Lyons, a British family, and how they deal with life in extraordinarily fucked up times. LISTEN Mucha Data by Cazzu
BackTalk: This is What White-Supremacist Terrorism Looks Like
This week, Dahlia and Amy are heartbroken over the spate of mass murders at the hands of white men with assault weapons. They talk about the importance of naming the acts of violence as white supremacist terrorism and how marginalized people across all communities are left vulnerable. Plus, we take a moment to celebrate the life and work of Toni Morrison, whose words and stories have forever shifted how we understand our world—for the better.
BackTalk: A Racist by Any Other Name
This week, Dahlia and Amy agree it’s about time for mainstream media organizations to label racists as racists. Recently, Trump tweeted to four congresswomen of color that they should go back to where they came from and accused them of being un-American. While his vile tweets were unsurprising, it was unexpected to see a national news outlet like NPR finally label it as racist. Language matters and it’s important to use the right words to describe despicable people. Plus, a shoutout to all our listeners and their support—it means so much! READ Milkman by Anna Burns, winner of the 2018 Man Booker Prize, is a stream-of-consciousness novel that depicts 1970s Belfast through the eyes of “middle sister,” a young woman who is caught between town gossip and a local paramilitary known as “the milkman,” WATCH HBO’s limited series, The Night Of, has some amazing performances and cinematography exploring the criminal justice machine and how it grinds through anyone involved in it. LISTEN “Alaska” by Banks is a dramatic and dreamy song for the summer.