Pop Culture Pilgrimage

Last year, as part of our trip to Prague and Vienna, Chris and I visited movie shooting locations for some of our favorite films and started the Pop Culture Pilgrimage webseries as part of our Pop Culture Lens podcast work. On that trip, we saw sites from Amadeus, Hellboy, The Third Man, and Before Sunrise….

Discussing Weird Al’s Staying Power

In a first, the forty-ninth episode of The Pop Culture Lens podcast finds friend of the podcast Noelle Lynn Blood joining Christopher Olson and I to discuss the importance of Weird Al Yankovic to pop culture and nerds. In this episode, the trio examine how Weird Al has adapted himself to different eras in pop…

The Multiplicity of “Pop”

To start with, I’m not even sure I would continue to call popular cultural studies the study of the culture of the working class, and my reluctance to do so underlies my entire argument about what is the current status of the mass and the pop. The culture studies of the 1970s, with its focus on the working class, is not truly adequate to explain the ways in which culture is experienced and produced in modern American society.

Why Popular Culture Matters (PCSJ 7/1)

The editors of the Popular Culture Studies Journal are happy to announce the release of Vol. 7 No. 1 that features editorials on “why popular culture matters,” seven original research articles, and an plethora of reviews that includes movies, television shows, games, and theatrical performances.  The original research considers live TV, The Walking Dead, Breaking Bad, Rufus Wainwright’s…

Pop Culture Lens on A Christmas Carol

In the fortieth episode of The Pop Culture Lens podcast, Christopher Olson and I present a special episode for the 2017 holiday season by discussing the morality of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. In this episode, the co-hosts discussed how Dickens utilized a ghost story framework to relay a very relatable character in the form…

Fandom as Repeatedly Returning to What Matters Most

Being a fan can mean many different things to many different people. It may mean a person likes to collect memorabilia for a favorite sports team. It may mean a group like to wear costumes and reenact an important event. It may mean individuals compete with one another to test their knowledge in trivia contests….

Ghost Whisperer’s Ghost in the Machine

This essay was originally posted as part of my work for the Virtual Worlds Research Group at Roskilde University. This essay reflects my interest in how pop culture represents new media technologies, such as virtual worlds, as part of the process whereby a society / culture comes to determine what will be the acceptable and…

The Pop Culture Lens Podcast Goes Live!

Christopher Olson (of the blog Seems Obvious to Me) and I present a new podcast, The Pop Culture Lens, where we discuss the media of the past through the lens of today to understand how relevant it is to our modern lives. You can follow the podcast on Twitter, Tumblr, or Facebook, or get the…

Sukiyaki Western Django as a Representation of Transcultural Identity

Christopher J. Olson discusses how our globalized pop culture is resulting in new transcultural films where the directors act as DJs, remixing different cultures for completely new experiences.  This paper is the most recent draft of the presentation he will be giving at the PCA Conference in Chicago this upcoming April, 2014. via Sukiyaki Western…