Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration for article titled iThe A.V. Club/is new series asks, Why do we love the pop culture we love?
Screenshot: The Simpsons (Disney+)

Figuring out what makes people tick is really what great art is all about. And while we here at The A.V. Club have no delusions of grandeur, we’d like to think we contribute to that conversation by providing a few of our musings about pop culture, and giving you all a place to share your thoughts as well. (That is, when the comments section works properly, which should be more frequently now—and we’re continuing to make back-end tweaks to make that experience smoother, we swear!)

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Now we want to be even more part of the conversation with our new series Why We Love. Launching this Thursday, the ongoing video series examines the (sometimes subconscious) reasons we’re drawn to our pop culture obsessions. Produced by The A.V. Club, the series features interviews with celebrities and thought leaders going beyond nostalgia to explore the sociological and psychological reasons we are drawn to certain types of entertainment and personalities. Equal parts VH1’s I Love The… and Vox’s Explained, each episode explores a different concept or theme.

In honor of Pride Month, the first four episodes—which will be released on our site the last two Thursdays and Mondays of June—feature LGBTQ talent and academics discussing everything from their obsessions with James Bond and the X-Men to why loving musical theater and The Golden Girls is more than just a cliche. Check out the opening of the first episode here:

The idea for the series evolved from a staff meeting conversation in which one of our video-content producers, Cameron Scheetz, revealed he’d recently discovered he was not alone in feeling that his love of the James Bond series was somehow tied to his queer identity. He wanted to go deeper than the obvious and explore why this hyper-masculine spy was so appealing to other gay people. That germ of an idea snowballed into Why We Love, which we decided to launch during Pride Month so it could kick it off with the idea that started it all.

The first four episodes—which we’re billing a miniseries titled Why We Love: Pride Edition—center on action heroes, divas and dames, magic and monsters, and musicals. But we’re already planning more, non-Pride episodes to be released later this summer. And we want to hear from you, what topics would you love to have us explore? Let us know in the comments, and make sure to check out Why We Love when it launches Thursday.

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Why We Love: Pride Edition features Kalen Allen (actor, digital creator), Guy Branum (comedian), Rhea Butcher (comedian), Wilson Cruz (activist, actor, E.P. of Visible: Out On Television), Cameron Esposito (comedian, actor), Laurie Essig (professor, author) Ezra Furman (musician), Jonica T. Gibbs (actor, Twenties), Michael Grassi (writer/E.P., Katy Keene), Harvey Guillén (actor, What We Do In The Shadows), Dave Holmes (Esquire Editor-At-Large, Homophilia podcast host), Rahne Jones (actor, The Politician), Joe Lipsett (Horror Queers podcast host), Keiynan Lonsdale (musician, actor, Love Simon), David Lowbridge-Ellis (writer, Licence To Queer), Ira Madison III (TV writer, Keep It podcast host), Jenny Owen Youngs (musician, Buffering The Vampire Slayer podcast host), Peppermint (activist, actor, Head Over Heels), Leo Sheng (actor, The L Word: Generation Q), SA Smythe (professor, poet), Trace Thurman (Horror Queers podcast host), Karen Tongson (professor, Waiting To X-Hale podcast co-host), Julio Torres (writer, SNL, actor, Los Espookys), and Nina West (performer, RuPaul’s Drag Race).

A.V. Club Editor in Chief...but really just a She-Ra, Schitt’s Creek, Grey’s Anatomy, Survivor, Big Brother, Top Chef, The Good Place superfan.

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