Bullseye is a public radio show about what's good in popular culture. With a keen editorial eye, Bullseye sifts the wheat from the chaff, and brings you hot culture picks, in-depth interviews with the most revered and revolutionary creative people and irreverent original comedy.
Bullseye is equal parts funny and fascinating. Whether you're already plugged in to the culture map, or looking for a signpost, Bullseye will keep you on target. More About Bullseye
Growing up in the Calvinist church, Paul Schrader didn't see a movie until his late teens. Since then, he has more than made up for it, writing, producing, and directing influential films such as Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and Affliction.
Willem Dafoe, having worked on 7 films in the past with Schrader, trusts his film-making style and sensibility. Dafoe's Hollywood breakout role was in the 1985 film To Live and Die in L.A., and has starred in many other beloved films such as Platoon and the Last Temptation of Christ.
This week, Schader and Dafoe sit down with Jesse to discuss their new film, Dog Eat Dog. They discuss Schrader’s childhood, his earlier screenplay and directorial premieres and Dafoe school’s Jessie on acting and how he gets into character when portraying psychotic characters.
Thirty years ago, David Crosby was one of the biggest rock stars in the world, being a part of two game changing and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inducted bands Crosby, Stills & Nash and The Byrds. Decades after his depart from playing with bands, he continues to play music on his own.
In conversation with Jesse, David discusses his transition into music, his addiction and recovery from drugs, and his latest album Lighthouse.
This week, Jesse recommends Ray Barretto’s inaugural album Acid as an album that had much ambition and achieved so much at a time when the music on it was still new to the American aural palette.
There was a period of time in the mid to late 1990s when Patton Oswalt spent most of his waking hours indoors. He'd be in a TV writer's room all day, make his way to the movie theater for a film or two, and then hit the stand up stage before going to sleep. Then he'd get up and do it all over again.
His movie obsession was supposed to teach him how to be a filmmaker and create better art, but he found he was missing out on life, and art was no substitute.
Oswalts memoire Silver Screen Fiend: Learning About Life Through and Addiction to Film is out now.
His Emmy winning stand-up comedy special Talking for Clapping can be seen on Netflix.
Fresh Off the Boat is the first network sitcom about Asian-Americans in a long time, and that's a big deal. The creative team behind the show, including memoirist Eddie Huang, showrunner Nahnatchka Khan and star Randall Park have publicly grappled with that blessing and burden. How do you retain the specificity of the Tawainese-American experience and provide that to a group of Americans who are hungry for mass-market representation, and also make a show that's big-tent enough to welcome hundreds of millions of Americans who don't know what bao are?
We're joined by Nahnatchka Khan and Randall Park to talk about trying to achieve those goals, how they see their own American experiences, and how to write a sitcom dad who's not dumb.
Fresh Off the Boat airs Tuesday nights at 9/8c on ABC.
Jesse explains how Sly and the Family Stone made a perfect album, even as they slowly disintegrated as a group.
Norman Lear is a Hollywood legend who is responsible for cultivating an entire genre of television: the American Sitcom. After serving time in the U.S. Army during WWII, Lear began a career in Public Relations, eventually turning his sights to television production. During the 1970’s, he had some of the most successful TV shows running, including All In The Family, Maude, and The Jeffersons. After his tenure creating sitcoms, he went on to work on movies and writing.
You can find the upcoming PBS documentary about his life, Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You here.
Riz Ahmed is a British actor who has been in many notable films including Chris Morris'
Swet Shop Boy’s new album Cashmere can found here.
This week, Jesse talks about why if you like strange, weird, yet insightful TV, Starz’s Blunt Talk is the show for you.
Armando Iannucci is a legendary comedy writer originally from Glasgow, now residing in London. He created hit shows such as The Thick of It and its offspring Veep. He developed the celebrated character, Alan Partridge, and wrote the screenplay for the 2009 political satire film In The Loop . He has won countless Primetime Emmy and BAFTA Awards, and has worked with some of comedy's greatest actors.
This week, Armando and Jesse sit down to talk about writing The Thick of It, working with renowned actors such as Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Peter Capaldi & Jeffrey Tambour, and how he found humor in Stalinism for his upcoming film The Death of Stalin.
Josie Long is a British comedian who started stand-up at a young age, winning one of England’s most prestigious comedy awards at the age of 17. She has toured with legendary comedian Stuart Lee, and has performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe regularly over the past 10 years.
She performed a live stand-up set for Bullseye Live in London. Her latest BBC 3 short TOP TEN: Opinions That May Or May Not Have Got Me Dumped (Josie Long) is a good summary of Josie's comedic sensibility.
Sharon Horgan is a British comedy actor, writer, and producer. These skills have been used in tandem on many of her projects, most notably Catastrophe and Pulling. Her upcoming HBO show Divorce stars Sarah Jessica Parker.
Sharon and Jesse discuss the differences between Catastrophe and Divorce, writing about sensitive topics, and the autobiographical nature of her projects.
Romare is a London based electronic music artist on the Ninja Tunes Label. His new album Love Songs: Part 2 will be released November 11th.
Jesse talks about the modesty in Houston rapper Devin the Dude’s songs.
Don't miss Bullseye with Jesse Thorn, live at the Chicago Podcast Festival! The show is November 17th at 7 PM, and tickets are on sale now! Lady to Lady will be opening, and Bullseye guests include Improv comedians TJ Jagodowski and Dave Pasquesi, standup Dwayne Kennedy and Jason Narduci of the band Superchunk and his new project: Split Single. For more information, check out chicagopodcastfestival.org.
Cameron Esposito and Rhea Butcher are Los Angeles based comedians, actors, and producers. Both hailing from the Midwest, Rhea is from Akron, Ohio and Cameron Chicago, Illinois, which is actually where they met 5 years ago. Cameron and Rhea have since moved to Los Angeles, gotten married, and have made a name for themselves in the LA comedy scene, hostin a weekly stand-up show called Put Your Hands Together .
Cameron, who has been in the business about 10 years longer than Rhea has released 3 comedy albums and has appeared on a number of late night talk shows. Rhea released her debut comedy album this year and has since made her first appearance on Conan .
This week, Jesse sits down with Cameron and Rhea to discuss their new show Take My Wife , working together, and LGBTQ rights.
You can find their new show Take My Wife on the SeeSo network
Comedian Jeff Garlin tells us about the worst night of his entire career.
Jesse tells us why The Taking of Pelham 123 is just too much fun to pass up.
Kaitlin Olson plays Sweet Dee on the long-running sitcom It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Dee is the only female member of "The Gang", a bunch of depraved, self-centered pals who run a bar. The Gang is constantly looking for ways to get rich quick, humiliate their enemies, get out of work, and prove once and for all the talent, charisma and brilliance they hold to be self-evident. In an unusual move for a solo female character, Dee doesn't serve to counterbalance the guys' bad behavior -- she absolutely matches their pace.
Olson talks to us about creating a more fully-fleshed character for Dee, how she came to comedy, and how she ended up dating (and marrying) her showrunner.
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia just began its eleventh season. It airs Wednesday nights at 10pm on FXX.
Jeff Chang talks to us about what "diversity" means to us today, the struggle for artists to defy racial categorization, and how and why corporations embraced multiculturalism.
Jeff Chang’s newest book- We Gon’ Be Alright: Notes on Race and Resegregation- is an exploration of the current unrest abound in the United States through a series of essays.
Jesse also tells us about the life and legend of Andre the Giant.
Danny Fields is a music manager and publicist who was instrumental in signing and promoting some of the biggest names in Punk Rock history.
This week, he and Jesse discuss his decision to leave the ivy league tract, his time in Andy Warhol’s Factory, and what it was like managing The Ramones.
Judith Light has had an almost 40 year acting career in which she’s played strong female characters on shows like One LIfe To Live and Who’s The Boss?. She is now continuing in this motif with her tenure on Broadway, winning two Tony Awards for her performances in the last 5 years, starring in a one woman show, and of course her groundbreaking performance in Transparent.
Judith sits down with guest correspondent Keith Powell to discuss her work on Transparent, the cast’s relationship with Jill Soloway, and the famous courtroom scene on One Life to LIve that launched her career.
You can watch Transparent on Amazon and find information about her one woman play here.
Jesse talks about Richard Linklater’s Everybody Wants Some as a reflection of the necessity for people to fall into spells of nostalgia, even if just for 90 minutes.
Hasan Minhaj is a Senior Correspondent on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah and is currently touring with his one man show Homecoming King. A native of the Sacramento area, his comedy is characterized by a mix of political and satirical comedy.
This week, he and Jesse sit down to discuss his one man show, stand up comedy in other countries, and the current political climate in the United States. Plus, Hasan knows a lot about sneakers.
Hasan is currently on tour with his show Homecoming King.
Margaret Wappler is journalist, columnist, pop culture critic, short story writer, podcast host , teacher, and now a novelist.
Margaret and Jesse talk about her new novel Neon Green, how she took care of her ill father as a teenager, the writing process, and the 1990’s.
You can find Margaret’s book here.
This week, Jesse talks about non-people of color still not getting the plight of people of color’s everyday reality.
Jesse sits down with acclaimed filmmaker Spike Lee. Spike tells us about how addiction is made explicit in his movie, Da Sweet Blood of Jesus, how he really feels about Larry Bird and about his own very serious addiction.... to Air Jordans.
Spike Lee’s latest film, Michael Jackson’s Journey from Motown to off the Wall is available on VOD.
Jesse sits down with Katja Blichfeld and Ben Sinclair. Katja Blichfeld is a casting director who previously won an Emmy for her work on 30 Rock; Ben Sinclair is an actor. The two are a married couple, and created the webseries High Maintenance. The show follows a New York City marijuana delivery guy as he visits his various clients.
The series has been picked up by HBO and will be making its debut on the network this month.
MTV2's Wonder Showzen looked like a kids' show. But it wasn't. It really, really, wasn't. Jesse tells us why Wonder Showzen is his favorite TV satire of the past decade.