Photo: Leah Nash

Episode 241: Stephen Malkmus, Doughnuts for Groughnups, and Oscar’s Finest “Act”

This week: Stephen Malkmus on rock and roll fatherhood ... Comedienne Annabelle Gurwitch makes an effort at etiquette .... Rebecca Mead revisits "Middlemarch" ... Humble doughnuts get a sophisticated make-over ... "The Act of Killing" is a difficult, fascinating, and important film to watch ... Angel Olsen takes flight ... Clown college admissions decline ... And the history of an obselete historical artifact, the printed phone book.


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Episode 240: Jonah Hill, House of Cards and Luxury Toast

This week: Jonah Hill's search for the perfect coupling ... Skip Lievsay explains how movies should sound ... Life imitates board games imitating life (but not The Game of Life) ... One mother's love-hate relationship with a thousand plastic blocks ... Getting what you pay for with luxury toast ... The creator of "House of Cards" tells us how politics is like jazz ... Woods to the left (to the left) ... How to flirt with a Viking ... And when to politely drink up and move on.


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Episode 239: Steve Coogan, Hugh Bonneville, B.J. Novak, and “Broad City” BFFs

This week: Oscar nominee Steve Coogan ("Philomena") meditates on condiments and dramedies... "The Monuments Men" star Hugh Bonneville - a.k.a. Lord Grantham on "Downton Abbey" - minds his manors... ex- "The Office" employee B.J. Novak introduces us to Wikipedia Brown, Boy Detective... The BFFs behind Comedy Central's "Broad City" riff on funny friends who came before them... Rico inhales $50,000 worth of fungus ... and we learn how Satchmo changed American music. Plus: Why single men should get into yoga and puppies... And a happy "Chinese New Year."


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Episode 238: Brie Larson, Baz Luhrmann, and Nomnomnom-enclature

This week: "Short Term 12" star Brie Larson fears oranges & lobsters... Baz Luhrmann talks movie music from Bee Gees to Gatsby... author Juan Gabriel VĂ¡squez shares a story of narco-trafficking and lost hippos... A Jimmy Buffet song brings indie band Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr to tears... We learn about the real-life divas who inspired Melba Toast and Fettuccine Alfredo... and Emily Post's great-great grandkids offer etiquette for present and future. Plus: The history of the cold war hot line, and we learn tardiness is a medical condition.


"F Word" Portraits - 2013 Toronto International Film Festival

Episode 237: Zoe Kazan, Jackie Collins, and Thinking Outside the Pizza Box

Zoe Kazan, writer/star of "Ruby Sparks" and the new play "Trudy & Max Love," uses our show to save a chihuahua... bestselling author Jackie Collins kidnaps our etiquette segment... Actor Sam Harris wages war on a little ham... all about an American who was big in Japan... New software monitors if 'retail therapy' actually works... Oscar-nominated documentarian Jeffrey Karoff goes underground ... And we hear a killer "Kong" song. Plus: the best pizza box in the world.


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Episode 236: Timothy Olyphant, Rosanne Cash, and Carl Hiaasen’s Pizza Surprise

This week: "Justified" star Timothy Olyphant says he's just the help... Etiquette from Carl Hiaasen, chronicler of bad Floridian behavior... Rosanne Cash takes a trip into music & literary history... You can't win 'em all - unless you're the Harlem Globetrotters ... Luxembourg gives it all away ... Indie band Diane Coffee brews us a pot of songs ... Fancy bibs for your fancy duds ... Useless geometry ... And scholarly advice on easing the transition for our inevitable robot overlords.


Robin Beck / AFP / Getty Images

Episode 235: Lupita Nyong’o, Gary Shteyngart, and Rust Belt Restos

This week: Lupita Nyongo, Golden globe nominee for "12 Years A Slave" reveals the secret to happiness... Gary Shteyngart develops a crush on the Iron Lady ... Beyond the tabloid tale of Tonya Harding ... Pittsburgh, PA steels itself for an influx of foodies... Novelist Chang-Rae Lee's dystopian vision of Baltimore ... Night clothes with thinking caps ... Playing political games ... And advice you asked for about the questions you shouldn't ask.


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Episode 234: Best of 2013

This week, we ring in 2014 by looking BACK at our favorite interviews of 2013. (Because, yes, we're punk like that.) You'll hear "things you didn't know" from Daniel Radcliffe, Margaret Atwood, and many more... Sounds big and small from reggae legend Jimmy Cliff and They Might be Giants... Writer Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love) sets the planets spinning... Tim Gunn and Lars Ulrich take the etiquette chair... Comedian Nick Kroll (attempts to) atone for Octoberfest... The year in Small Talk... "Gatsby" ringleader Baz Luhrmann kicks of our party... A liquid bikini... and lots more.


Photo by Jeff Riedel/SHOWTIME

Episode 233: Liev Schreiber, Wild Belle, and Cheese Drama

This Week: We take a brief holiday break (and hope you're able to do the same) and leave you with this choice episode from earlier in the year ... Liev Schrieber (just nominated for a 2014 Golden Globe) talks canine engineering and bad answers ... Choire Sicha, founder of The Awl, offers etiquette quips ... Chicago band Wild Belle bring us the world, on a platter of sound... A tale of cheese and blood feuds in the Spanish countryside ... David Gilbert shares a story of absent fathers, from his acclaimed novel "& Sons"... And the Mona Lisa goes missing! Plus, conflict cuisine, organic baseball, and HAIM (one of the buzziest bands of 2013) makes it in under "The Wire."


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Episode 232: Jeremy Renner, Nancy Sinatra, and Billy Collins

This Week: Jeremy Renner does the American Hustle... Nancy Sinatra on headphones and hair-poufs ... Former Poet Laureate Billy Collins asks you to clean your room ...Nick Lowe's Eccentric Xmas Soundtrack ... An inimitable, unpronounceable writer you've got to read... Italian food that might remind you of sushi ... The precise moment when cringes become cackles ... Television that really is bad for you ... And hugs and kisses from Queen Bey.