A look at the eclectic mix of offerings from Welcome To The Party Pal: The Mind-Bending Film & Television Podcast You Didn’t Know You Needed (Osiris Media), twenty-five episodes in…
Welcome to the Party Pal (WTTPP) is the ATM-affiliated mind-bending film and television podcast you didn’t know you needed! Hosted by Brian Sachson (producer/writer) and Michael Shields (writer/editor), WTTPP is a celebration of the art of cinema and filmmaking, where movies and television shows are meticulously dissected and analyzed to evaluate their grandeur (or, conversely when necessary, lament their shortcomings). Guests include the filmmakers and industry insiders that craft the works of art that inhabit the current zeitgeist. In the wake of the release of its twenty-fifth episode, ATM takes a look at what this exciting podcast has brought forth in its latest batch of episodes…
Episode 21: Watership Down
Welcome To The Party Pal invites you into the world of Richard Adams’s Watership Down. Expounding upon Adam’s 1972 survival and adventure novel which features a small group of rabbits, the 1978 animated film adaptation written and directed by Martin Rosen, AND the 2018 BBC/Netflix limited series, this episode discusses the unique way in which Adams birthed the story, the weighty commentary about life and society found within the often nerve-racking tale, and the impact Watership Down maintains almost 50 years after its inception.
Episode 21 also features the first WTTPP “fan pick” where a fan of the podcast not only suggests the topic of the episode, but sits in with WTTPP’s two hosts in examination of the film or television show chosen. First up is Alex Hoyt whose profound knowledge of all things Watership Down dramatically enhances the episode’s insight.
Episode 22: Leaving Neverland
Pulling no punches, yet careful in their treatment of a sensitive/controversial topic, the Welcome To The Party Pal duo examines the HBO documentary directed and produced by filmmaker Dan Reed, Leaving Neverland, which focuses on two men, Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who allege they were sexually abused as children by the singer Michael Jackson. In this episode hosts Brian Sachson and Michael Shields dissect the controversy around the documentary, analyze the credibility of the two men at the center of the film, ponder the unique and potentially perilous power of celebrity, and consider if it is possible to separate art from the artist.
Episode 23: One Nation Under Stress
In this episode of Welcome To The Party Pal, the eye-opening and urgent documentary One Nation Under Stress (HBO) is dissected with the help of its director Marc Levin. One Nation Under Stress follows Sanjay Gupta (CNN’s Chief Medical Correspondent) as he tries to uncover the root causes of why American life expectancy is falling and is now shorter than all other major developed countries.
Marc Levin is a renowned director with 36 director credits to his name. He is best known for his Brick City TV series, which won the 2010 Peabody award and was nominated for an Emmy for Exceptional Merit in Nonfiction Filmmaking and his dramatic feature film, Slam, which won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival and the Camera D’Or at Cannes in 1998. He also has received three Emmy Awards (1988, 1989, 1999) and the 1997 DuPont-Columbia Award.
Episode 24: Avengers: Endgame
The Welcome to The Party Pal duo go all in on the 22nd film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and the follow up to 2018’s Infinity War, Avengers: Endgame. Dissecting and celebrating the finale to Marvel’s epic Infinity Saga, hosts Brian Sachson and Michael Shields expound upon the intricacies of the film, from the post snap fallout of Thanos’ master plan, to the time travel rules employed by the filmmakers, to their excitement about the Asgardians of the Galaxy, and to what in store for the Marvel franchise moving forward and beyond!
Episode 25: The Bill Paxton Episode
The Welcome To The Party Pal team invites you to join in on a celebration of the career of one of the most gifted character actors in modern times, Bill Paxton. With 97 acting credits to his name, including films such as The Terminator, Weird Science, Aliens, Near Dark, Tombstone, True Lies, Apollo 13, Twister, Titanic, Edge of Tomorrow, and Nightcrawler, and also starring in the HBO drama series Big Love, Paxton’s mark on the film and television landscape was profound. To celebrate such a mammoth and nuanced talent, WTTPP secured help from comedian and host of the Amigos Podcast, Mike Finoia, and the host of the Grateful Dead-centric Brokedown Podcast, Jonathan Hart, who aid in providing insight and dramatically enliven a tribute to the only actor to play characters killed by a Terminator, a Predator and an Alien (xenomorph)!
To Be Continued…