Stephen Thompson, NPR

Stephen Thompson

NPR

Silver Spring, MD, United States

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Past:
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  • TPR News
  • WKSU
  • WLRN
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Recent articles by Stephen:

NPR

Twenty Years Later, Is 'The Emperor's New Groove'... A Classic?

The Emperor's New Groove came out 20 years ago, during a time when Disney's animation department was going through an identity crisis. The plot is simple: David Spade is a bratty emperor. Eartha Kitt and Patrick Warburton turn him into a llama. And John Goodman is the peasant who helps make things right. It was originally gonna be an epic musical, but then it became a comedy, a box-office… → Read More

NPR

Megan Thee Stallion Completes Her World Domination With 'Good News'

Rapper Megan Thee Stallion has had a massive year. Her song with Cardi B, "WAP," topped the Billboard Hot 100 — as did, of course, her remix of "Savage" with Beyoncé. On Friday, Megan Thee Stallion dropped her first official full-length album, called Good News. It's stuffed with explicit sex and raunchy confidence, with features from fellow stars like SZA, Young Thug, 2 Chainz and Da Baby. But… → Read More

NPR

We're (Walking And) Talking About 'The West Wing'

The West Wing chronicles the inner workings of a fictional presidential administration. The president is Democrat Jed Bartlett, played by Martin Sheen, and his staff includes heavy hitters played by folks like Allison Janney, Rob Lowe, Bradley Whitford, John Spencer, and Richard Schiff. For the first four seasons, most episodes were written by Aaron Sorkin, who created the show and gave it many… → Read More

NPR

Leslie Jones Reinvigorates 'Supermarket Sweep'

The game show Supermarket Sweep has run in the '60s, the '90s and the aughts. This fall, it's been revived for a fourth iteration — this time in primetime on ABC. While the previous two versions of the show were hosted by the affable David Ruprecht, the new Supermarket Sweep is hosted by the delightfully amped-up Leslie Jones. She helps a new generation of shoppers as they run around a fake… → Read More

NPR

How 'Ted' Lassoed His Way Into Our Hearts

Ted Lasso knows football, but not, you know, football. He is an American football coach who finds himself in the U.K. coaching soccer in the Premier League. Jason Sudeikis originated the character in a promotional campaign for NBC's soccer coverage back in 2013. Now, Apple has given Ted his own ten-episode underdog sports series, called Ted Lasso. The show follows Ted's first season of play,… → Read More

NPR

Remembering 'Jeopardy!' Host Alex Trebek

The game show host Alex Trebek died Sunday following a battle with pancreatic cancer. Trebek hosted Jeopardy! for 36 years — his last episode airs on Christmas Day. Trebek hosted a number of game shows dating back to the early '70s. But he'll be forever known for his work on Jeopardy! — both for his steady demeanor and for moments when he couldn't bring himself to suffer fools gladly. → Read More

NPR

Arcade Fire Returns With 2020's First Big Post-Election Protest Anthem

The band gave fans a rousing preview of "Generation A" as part of Stephen Colbert's election-night special. → Read More

NPR

Ariana Grande Returns With 'Positions'

Ariana Grande is one of the world's biggest pop stars, and on Friday, she released her sixth album, Positions. The singer's follow-up to Thank U, Next finds her celebrating hard-won happiness in a string of poppy, sexually frank R&B songs. → Read More

NPR

'The Great British Baking Show': Still Scrummy Or A Little Soggy?

Whether you like an éclair or a bagel, a biscuit or a Bakewell tart, The Great British Baking Show will bring all your feelings about baked goods to the surface. The hosts have changed, and the challenges have evolved, but it's still about getting that perfect bake. The current season is airing on Netflix, and was filmed in a so-called bubble to protect everyone from the pandemic. It also comes… → Read More

NPR

'Borat 2': Giuliani Made Headlines, But Is The Film Any Good?

In 2006, Sacha Baron Cohen's movie Borat was an unlikely blockbuster. It starred Cohen as a fictional reporter from Kazakhstan who journeys across the U.S. and interacts with Americans who don't know they're part of a comedy. Borat made hundreds of millions of dollars. It spawned catchphrases, and became a pop-culture phenomenon. Now, 14 years later, that unlikely blockbuster has an equally… → Read More

NPR

Three Great Horror Movies For Scaredy Cats

We are deep into the Halloween season, and many of us are cooped up at home with our streaming services, scrolling through movie after movie full of monsters, murderers, jump scares, and rivers of blood. But what about those of us who are scaredy cats? Maybe we're into the idea of horror movies, but aren't looking to be grossed out by gore or freaked out by jump scares? Well, this is the… → Read More

NPR

'SNL': Adele Hosts Because 'Album's Not Finished,' But H.E.R. Debuts New Song

Adele sang a bit in one sketch but left most of the music to H.E.R., who performed a new song called "Hold On." → Read More

NPR

Does Netflix's 'Rebecca' Live Up To Its Predecessors?

You may know Rebecca as a 1938 novel by Daphne du Maurier. You might know it as a 1940 adaptation directed by Alfred Hitchcock that won Best Picture. But if you've always wanted a version with Armie Hammer playing the role once occupied by Laurence Olivier, Netflix is on it. The new Rebecca stars Lily James as a woman who becomes the second wife of Maxim de Winter, played by Hammer. When she… → Read More

NPR

Pop Culture Happy Hour Goes Daily

Like many of you, the Pop Culture Happy Hour team is socially distancing at home. And we are watching more TV shows and movies than ever before. So that's one of the reasons we are going to start coming to you five days a week. We'll talk about great movies, television, books, music and videogames. So make sure to join us starting Monday, October 26th when Pop Culture Happy Hour goes daily. → Read More

NPR

Aaron Sorkin Goes Back To The Courtroom In 'The Trial Of The Chicago 7'

Writer-director Aaron Sorkin knows his way around a courtroom drama: He wrote the screenplay for A Few Good Men nearly 30 years ago. Now, he's written and directed The Trial of the Chicago 7. The new movie dramatizes the trial of a far-flung group of anti-Vietnam War activists, including Abbie Hoffman, Tom Hayden and Bobby Seale, who were each charged with inciting violence at the 1968… → Read More

NPR

Is 'The Good Lord Bird' A White Savior Story, or Something Different?

Ethan Hawke plays the abolitionist John Brown in the new series The Good Lord Bird, which traces the events leading up to the 1859 raid on Harpers Ferry. Told from the point of view of a fictional Black teenager nicknamed "Onion," the series has plenty of drama. But it's also a dark comedy about following a leader who's extremely passionate and wildly unpredictable. → Read More

NPR

Stream Jack White's Thrilling 'SNL' Performance

In the span of less than 10 minutes, the rock star's set worked in an Eddie Van Halen tribute, Beyoncé, The White Stripes, a Jack White solo song and Blind Willie Johnson. → Read More

NPR

Latinx Songs That Helped Shape The Decade

Latinx music has experienced a huge boom in the last 10 years. We've seen the rise of global superstars like Bad Bunny and J Balvin. We've seen Shakira and Jennifer Lopez take over this year's Super Bowl halftime show. And, of course, we've seen the chart domination of "Despacito" by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee. The decade has also produced countless musical discoveries across the Latin world.… → Read More

NPR

Eddie Van Halen, Guitar Hero, Dies At 65

The namesake of radio-rock band Van Halen dazzled a generation of guitar fans with his histrionic solos and trademark finger tapping. → Read More

NPR

NPR Music's No. 1 Albums And Songs Of September

We pick our favorite music released in September 2020, featuring Cuban hip-hop artist La Dame Blanche, Masego's summer wanderlust, Big Thief's Adrianne Lenker and a reimagined mass. • Adrianne Lenker: "anything" from songs• Waylon Payne: "Old Blue Eyes" from Blue Eyes, The Harlot, The Queer, The Pusher and Me• Masego, "Passport"• La Dame Blanche: "La Maltratada" from Ella• Theo Alexander: "re;… → Read More