Friday, December 29, 2023

251 | After Midnight – Universal's Invisible Man, Part 1

Michael and Jess talk about the first three movies in Universal's Invisible "Man" series: The Invisible Man (1933), The Invisible Man Returns (1940), and The Invisible Woman (1940). Including that last one turned out to be a controversial decision, so we talked about that, too.

Monday, December 25, 2023

250 | Movie & TV Santas Sweet 16

Merry Christmas! On this 25th day of December, we're sharing our 250th episode of After Lunch and it's a jolly one. Michael and Rob are joined by Pop Culture Retrofitters Michael DiGiovanni and Christian Nielsen to nominate and vote on their favorite movie and TV Santas. We've made our lists and checked them twice; it's time to decide who is the best representation of Santa Claus. 

Friday, December 22, 2023

249 | Love Actually (2003)

Wrapping up this season's series of Sleigh Bell Cinema reruns, Michael and Rob talk about one of their favorite Christmas movies, Love Actually. The movie's celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, so we're ending these reruns by showing it some love (while also talking about its faults).

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

248 | White Christmas (1954)

We’re down to our last two Sleigh Bell Cinema re-runs for this season and these are biggies. Today it’s one of Michael's family’s absolute favorites: a movie that they cannot safely get through the holiday season without watching. We’re talking about Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, and Vera-Ellen in White Christmas. And since it’s such a tradition with Michael's family, it’s appropriate that he talked about it with his wife Diane.

Monday, December 18, 2023

247 | A Christmas Story (1983)

It's a clinker! This last week before Christmas we have three final Christmas Spirit movies to discuss and they’re all biggies. This first one is the cable classic A Christmas Story from 1983 and talking with Michael about it is the one and only Paxton Holley.

Saturday, December 16, 2023

246 | While You Were Sleeping (1995)

This episode will be the last of our daily releases for the month. From here to Christmas we’ll be going every other day. But we think we’ve saved the best for last. Not the best conversations necessarily. Those have all been great and so will these. But like Home Alone yesterday, these next few movies are some of Michael's favorite holiday films. True classics like While You Were Sleeping, which Michael talked about with his friend Erik Johnson.

Friday, December 15, 2023

245 | Home Alone (1990)

Yesterday we shared an episode where Evan Hanson and Michael talked about the movie Krampus, where a kid gets irritated with his family and then has to defend his home from malignant forces. That’s also what happens in today’s movie as Michael and his son David discuss the classic, Home Alone.

Thursday, December 14, 2023

244 | Krampus (2015)

Yesterday we shared an episode where Chad Young and I talked about the Christmas slasher film Silent Night, Deadly Night in which a young man has a twisted image of Santa as a being who ruthlessly punishes the naughty. Because of that, I mentioned in the episode that it would make a good double-feature with the 2015 movie Krampus, which is also about a vengeful holiday spirit who punishes the naughty. So that’s the movie that Evan Hanson and I talk about in this episode. 

It stars Adam Scott and Toni Collette, is occasionally funny, occasionally scary, and as Evan points out, actually pretty important.

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

243 | Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)

Yesterday we got a little dark with Bad Santa, but today we’re getting really dark with our favorite Christmas slasher movie, Silent Night, Deadly Night. Talking with Michael about it is Chad Young (aka HorrorMovieBBQ), who knew a lot more about it and its sequels than Michael did. They had a really fun conversation, so don’t be naughty. Give it a listen.

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

242 | Bad Santa (2003)

We’re moving out of silly comedy territory with this episode, but till in the comedy genre for now. This one’s a little bit darker though. From 2003, it’s Bad Santa, starring Billy Bob Thornton, Tony Cox, Lauren Graham, Bernie Mac, and John Ritter. Talking with Michael about it is his pal and occasional podcasting partner, Dan Taylor. This one might get a little naughty.

Monday, December 11, 2023

241 | Christmas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie's Island Adventure (2003)

Yesterday, Michael DiGiovanni and Michael May talked about Christmas Vacation and how - during their prep for that conversation - they discovered the existence of a weird sequel called Christmas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie's Island Adventure. Of course they had to come back and talk about it. And they invited Paxton Holley to do that with them.

Sunday, December 10, 2023

240 | National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (1989)

We’re re-running a stretch of silly comedies from the Sleigh Bell Cinema podcast, so of course we can’t get too far into that without talking about National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. That’s exactly what Michael May and Michael DiGiovanni did and Michael May's opinion of the movie changed as a result.

Saturday, December 9, 2023

239 | Four Christmases (2008)

Yesterday we shared a discussion of the 1994 movie Mixed Nuts, so we’ll stick with the silly comedies for a bit. In this episode, Michael and his son David talk about Seth Gordon’s Four Christmases starring Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughn and an awesome cast of co-stars like Mary Steenburgen, Robert Duvall, Sissy Spacek, Jon Voight, Jon Favreau, and Kristin Chenoweth.

Friday, December 8, 2023

238 | Mixed Nuts (1994)

The last couple of days, we reshared discussions that Noel Thingvall and Michael had about the classic Christmas in Connecticut and its remake. Today we’re making a trilogy of it and sharing Noel’s other appearance on the show where he introduced Michael to a Christmas comedy he'd never even heard of before. It’s Mixed Nuts starring a huge cast that includes Steve Martin, Madeline Kahn, Liev Schreiber, Rob Reiner, Parker Posey, Robert Klein, Juliette Lewis, Adam Sandler, Rita Wilson, Jon Stewart, and Garry Shandling.

Thursday, December 7, 2023

237 | Christmas in Connecticut (1992)

Yesterday we re-ran a conversation between Noel Thingvall and Michael about the 1945 classic, Christmas in Connecticut. We mentioned a couple of times in that conversation that there’s a remake of that movie, so of course Michael and Noel also had to talk about that one. The remake was a TV movie from 1992 starring Dyan Cannon, Kris Kristofferson, and Tony Curtis. And most remarkably, directed by Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

236 | Christmas in Connecticut (1945)

Yesterday we re-ran a conversation that Rob and Michael had about the 1949 movie, Holiday Affair, on Michael's old Sleigh Bell Cinema podcast. Today, it’s another movie from the ‘40s and even more of a classic. From 1945, it’s Christmas in Connecticut starring Barbara Stanwyck. Our guest for the episode was Noel Thingvall, who’s also been on After Lunch a few times in the last couple of years.

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

235 | Holiday Affair (1949)

This Christmas season on After Lunch - like with the last couple of years - we’re going to be re-running a bunch of episodes from Michael's old Sleigh Bell Cinema podcast. This is going to be an especially busy year though, because we’re running discussions of what we call Holiday Spirit movies. 

Unlike Tangential Christmas movies, these are undeniably about the Holiday Season, but without a lot of fantastical elements like Santa or his elves and reindeer. If there’s magic, it’s going to be subtle or ambiguous. There are a lot of these movies though; it’s easily the biggest category that we talked about on Sleigh Bell Cinema. So we’re going to be running an episode a day for the next couple of weeks. 

To kick this off, we want to start with a movie that Rob and Michael keep referring back to. In fact, it’s come up in the last three episodes on the show. From 1949, it’s Holiday Affair starring Janet Leigh, Robert Mitchum, and Wendell Corey. And featuring Colonel Potter himself, Harry Morgan, in a small role. It’s one of Michael's favorite Christmas movies, but you’ll have to stay tuned to find out what Rob thought. So please listen and enjoy and let us know whether you’re Team Steve or Team Carl.

Monday, December 4, 2023

234 | Happiest Season (2020)

This year on the podcast we're going to be all about Holiday Spirit movies: films that are undeniably about Christmas, but don't heavily feature supernatural or magical elements like toy-making elves or flying reindeer. We'll be re-running a bunch of discussions of these kinds of movies from Michael's old Sleigh Bell Cinema podcast, but to kick things off, Michael and Rob talk about Kristen Stewart and Mackenzie Davis in Happiest Season. The movie seems like a standard romantic comedy at first, but there are plot twists and a fantastic cast that includes Mary Steenburgen, Alison Brie, Aubrey Plaza, Victor Garber, and Dan Levy.

And stay tuned for a spoiler-filled discussion of Hannah Waddingham: Home for Christmas at the end.

Sunday, December 3, 2023

233 | It Happened on Fifth Avenue (1947)

Michael and Rob welcome back Jacob Bean-Watson to talk about another tangential Christmas movie this year. Though it may be more than just tangential. It's Roy Del Ruth's It Happened on Fifth Avenue, a charmingly relevant story about a group of homeless people who take shelter in a mansion over Christmas (although unbeknownst to most of the group, some of them are the house's actual owners). The movies stars Victor Moore, Hazel's Don DeFore, Gale Storm, Ann Harding, Charlie Ruggles, and Gilligan's Island's Skipper himself: Alan Hale Jr. 

Saturday, December 2, 2023

232 | Serendipity (2001)

As the Christmas celebrations continue on After Lunch, Michael and Rob welcome back Jody Collins to the show to talk about one of his favorite Christmas movies. It's Serendipity, starring John Cusack, Kate Beckinsale, Jeremy Piven, Molly Shannon, Bridget Moynahan, and John Corbett. The movie is a sweet and funny love story with some lovely surprises, but it also raises philosophical questions about fate, free will, and the romantic notion of The One. 

Friday, December 1, 2023

231 | A Christmas Carol (1938)

Happy Holidays! To kick off a busy Christmas season on the show, Michael and Rob welcome back Mike Westfall (Advent Calendar House) to discuss this year's Christmas Carol adaptation. It's Edwin L Marin's 1938 film starring Reginald Owen as Scrooge and Gene Lockhart as Bob Cratchit. The movie makes severe cuts to the story while adding other plot elements, but that's not all. There are also bad wigs, the most cheery Fred ever, a super cute Ghost of Christmas Past, and much much more.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

230 | '80s Music

Michael, Rob, Jody Collins, and Becky Tyler each create a mixtape with ten of their favorite '80s songs. Some songs have personal importance, others are simply iconic, but all 40 help define the decade musically for our panel. Listen and let us know which playlists most reflect your taste and what songs (whether we mentioned them or not) best exemplify the '80s for you.

Monday, November 27, 2023

229 | After Midnight – Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man

Michael and Jess finish Universal's solo Frankenstein movies with The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942) before checking out the introduction of Lon Chaney Jr's iconic werewolf character in The Wolf Man (1941). Then they wrap up with the creation of Universal's Monster Cinematic Universe in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943).

Monday, November 20, 2023

228 | The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)

Michael, Rob, and Karen continue their Bondathon with a game-changing entry in the series, The Spy Who Loved Me. Co-starring Barbara Bach and featuring Caroline Munro, it introduces new recurring characters like Jaws and General Gogol while also raising the bar for sheer spectacle. But is it also good?! 

Friday, November 17, 2023

227 | A Spooky Vacation Podcast Smoothie

Michael and his wife Diane visited upstate New York for Halloween. They eventually ended up in Sleepy Hollow to spend time with the Headless Horseman, but also got to visit with one Mr Rob Graham and his wife Collette. In this special in-person recording, Michael and Diane talk with Rob about their Sleepy Hollow adventure and Rob shares his and Collette's recent spooky trip to Universal Studios and Disney World in Florida. 

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

226 | Dungeons & Dragons, Session One - A Drop Inn Drubbing

Moby the Bard and his Bunnymen companions check into an inn to clean up after their recent griffin hunt. But their sleep is interrupted by screams and murder, leading the trio to investigate and assist a former pirate accused of the crime as well as his adopted daughter.

Dungeon Master Ben Graham leads Rob Graham, Jeff Somogyi, and Michael May in their first full Dungeons & Dragons adventure together. Be sure to check out Episode 183 for the players' discussion of their histories with the game and the introduction to Ben's world.

Maps from the adventure:
The City of Trellan
Sketch of Jackson's exploration of the Drop Inn

Monday, November 13, 2023

225 | After Midnight – Universal Mummies, Part 1

Michael and Jess open the sarcophagus on Universal's first three Mummy movies: The Mummy (1932), The Mummy's Hand (1940), and The Mummy's Tomb (1942).

Monday, November 6, 2023

224 | Fithy Horrors Rerun – Edgar Allan Poe

With the recent release of Mike Flanagan's adaptation of The Fall of the House of Usher, it seems like a good time to rerun this conversation about Edgar Allan Poe between Michael, Jessica Hickman, and Darla Ecklund from the old Filthy Horrors podcast. 

The episode begins in a cemetery as we dig into "The Cask of Amontillado," "The Masque of the Red Death," and "The Raven," with side-trips to other Poe stories and favorite adaptations of his work.

Note: It was windy at the cemetery and the sound overwhelms the discussion a few times during that section of the episode. We cleaned it up as best we could, but if it's bothersome, you might want to skip ahead to about 21 minutes into the show. At that point we've moved inside and the audio is clear for the remainder of the episode.

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

223 | Underworld: Blood Wars (2016)

Happy Halloween! Michael, Rob, Pax, and Becky finish the Underworld films with a visit to the ice vampires as they talk about whether Blood Wars is a satisfying conclusion to the series.

Monday, October 30, 2023

222 | Underworld: Awakening (2012)

Michael, Rob, Pax, and Becky return to the main Underworld timeline to briefly check on the Underworld: Endless War animated shorts before seeing what happens when humanity discovers the existence of vampires and werewolves in Underworld: Awakening.

Friday, October 27, 2023

221 | Underworld: Rise of the Lycans (2009)

Michael, Rob, Pax, and Becky travel back in time to the Dark Ages to witness how the war between the Underworld werewolves and vampires began. And whether the lack of Kate Beckinsale at all affects their enjoyment of this prequel to the previous two films.

Thursday, October 26, 2023

220 | Underworld: Evolution (2006)

Michael, Rob, Pax, and Becky return to a look at the second Underworld film to see how well it deals with the awakening of Marcus from the end of the previous movie, adds to the world of the series, and develops Selene's relationship with Michael Corvin.

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

219 | Underworld (2003)

Michael, Rob, Pax, and Becky Tyler are talking about the Underworld movies in this week leading up to Halloween. Starting, logically enough, with the first one starring Kate Beckinsale, Scott Speedman, Michael Sheen, and Bill Nighy. It's an old favorite for some of the panel, a second look for one, and a brand new experience for yet another.

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

218 | After Dinner Lounge – Collarbone

Michael, Rob, and Pax wrap up this month's Lounge with conversations about shark movies, ZZ Top, The Fall of the House of Usher, Ahsoka, Only Murders in the Building, After Party, “buying” digital movies, Haunted Mansion, Us, To Be or Not To Be: A Chooseable-Path Adventure by Ryan North, finishing the Harry Potter series, Ghost Wall by Sarah Moss, Totally Killer, the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina TV series, From Dusk Till Dawn sequels, Batman ‘66, Black Mirror, favorite museums, Reservation Dogs, The Changeling, the Criterion Channel, The Creator, The Pope’s Exorcist, It Lives Inside, and No One Will Save You.

Monday, October 23, 2023

217 | After Dinner Lounge – You Really Stokered That Up

Michael, Rob, and Pax gather again in the Lounge to talk about things they hate (and their tolerance for people who like them), favorite comics artists, re-visiting favorite art vs seeking out new art, appearing in documentaries, The Classified Dossier: Sherlock Holmes and Count Dracula by Christian Klaver, Edgar Allan Poe, Joe Hill, James Bond comics, high school reunions, the surprising relevance of gothic stories to modern society, Jason X: The Experiment by Pat Cadigan, and The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay.

Monday, October 16, 2023

216 | The After Lunch Screaming Service

Michael and Rob welcome Joanna from Bloody Popcorn and Shawn Robare to create a horror-themed streaming service. Each panelist controls a sub-channel that includes 5 favorite horror films, 5 favorite horror-related TV series, and an original series created by the panelist themself. Listen and see if your favorites are available!

(Special thanks to Shawn for the name: 'screaming service'.)

Monday, October 9, 2023

215 | Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971)

Michael, Rob, and Pax talk about the third Planet of the Apes movie in which the series keeps going in spite of the planet's literal destruction at the end on the previous film. How convincing is the continuity? How well does the bold, new direction work? And what do Victor Newman and Khan Noonien Singh have to do with it?

Monday, October 2, 2023

214 | The Man with the Golden Gun (1974)

Michael, Rob, and Karen discuss fun houses, slide whistles, kung fu nieces, and Mary Goodnight's espionage skills in this comprehensive conversation about Roger Moore's second Bond film. It's The Man with the Golden Gun, starring Christopher Lee, Maud Adams, Britt Ekland, and Hervé Villechaize.

Friday, September 29, 2023

213 | After Midnight – Karloff's Frankenstein

After spending a lot of time talking about the Conjuring and Amityville Horror movies, Michael and Jess finally get around to discussing the three Universal Frankenstein movies starring Boris Karloff as the Monster: Frankenstein (1931), The Bride of Frankenstein (1935), and Son of Frankenstein (1939).

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

212 | After Dinner Lounge – Harry Potter Really Hates Lasagna

This month's After Dinner Lounge concludes with Michael, Rob, and Pax talking about video game encyclopaedias, the new Birds of Prey comic, Jughead, books and comics by Charles Soule, Greg Rucka, Ryan North, and Kieron Gillen, Harry Potter, ‘80s Spider-Man comics, The Pope’s Exorcist, more Elvis movies, Batman ‘66, the cancelation of Winning Time, breakfast preferences, Blue Beetle and the current state of superhero movies, the second seasons of Dark Winds and The After Party, the Equalizer movies, Bottoms, and A Haunting in Venice.

Monday, September 25, 2023

211 | After Dinner Lounge – Check Your Situation Out

Michael, Rob, and Pax gather again in the lounge to discuss what they've been listening to, thinking about, reading, and watching. And Evan Hanson stops in for a bit!

In this episode, they dig into their favourite video games and Autumn traditions, various podcasts (including the impressive, new Remember That Show?), Jimmy Buffett, the second seasons of Foundation and Good Omens, Justified, X-Men and Star Trek comics, Asteroid City, Werewolves Within, The Menu, 1917, Attack the Block, Twitter vs Bluesky, Early Autumn by Robert B Parker, The Cincinnati Kid, John Hughes movies, and Hardy Boys shorts. 

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

210 | Fithy Horrors Rerun – Frankenstein

In preparation for an upcoming episode of After Lunch After Midnight in which Michael and Jessica Hickman discuss the first three Universal Frankenstein movies, here's a rerun of a 2019 episode of the Filthy Horrors podcast where they and Darla Ecklund talked about the Mary Shelley novel and several adaptations of it.

Monday, September 18, 2023

209 | TV Villains Sour 16

Following up on Episode 132 from last year when we determined the Ultimate Literary Villain of All Time, Michael and Rob welcome Ben Graham and Paxton Holley to do the same with TV villains. Each panelists nominates four favorite boob tube baddies, then we put them into tournament brackets to discuss and vote. Will you agree with our choices? Did we leave off a favorite of yours? Listen and let us know!

Monday, September 11, 2023

Monday, September 4, 2023

207 | Live and Let Die (1973)

Michael, Rob, and Karen discuss Roger Moore's first go as Bond and the mixing of British spy adventure with the blaxploitation and hicksploitation genres. It's a messy film with plenty to talk about in terms of what works and what doesn't.

Friday, September 1, 2023

206 | Fithy Horrors Rerun – Dracula

Inspired by last episode's Dracula discussion, we're rerunning another episode of the old Filthy Horrors podcast. Michael, Jess, and Darla talk about all things Dracula: from the original novel to their favorite movies, comics, games, and more.

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

205 | Dracula on Film

Michael and guest Becky Tyler take a bat-driven carriage through an overview of Dracula movies from 1922's Nosteratu to this year's The Last Voyage of the Demeter.

Monday, August 28, 2023

204 | After Midnight – The Creature from the Black Lagoon

As mentioned in Episode 199, After Lunch is starting a new series of horror-themed episodes that we're calling "After Midnight". Jessica Hickman joins Michael to kick off with a discussion of Universal's trilogy of Creature from the Black Lagoon films: Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954), Revenge of the Creature (1955), and The Creature Walks Among Us (1956).