Decoder Ring

By Slate

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Decoder Ring is the podcast about cracking cultural mysteries. In each episode, host Willa Paskin takes a cultural question, object, or habit; examines its history; and tries to figure out what it means and why it matters.

Episode Date
The Johnlock Conspiracy
Who gets to decide if Sherlock Holmes is gay? For over a century, fans of Sherlock Holmes have been analyzing, debating, and creating new texts with Arthur Conan Doyle’s characters. Decoder Ring explores the Johnlock Conspiracy, a fan theory about the BBC TV show Sherlock, positing the inevitability of a gay romance between Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson. With interviews from historians, journalists, and fans at the heart of this controversial idea, this episode explores this theory, how it played out in the real world, and whether this kind of fandom is a meaningful way of interacting with fiction.<br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
Jun 04, 2018
The Laff Box
Welcome to Decoder Ring! Decoder Ring is a monthly podcast about cracking cultural mysteries. Every episode we’ll take on a cultural object, idea, or habit and speak with experts, historians and obsessives to try to figure out where it comes from, what it means and why it matters. Why do we get so invested in fictional romances? What does it mean to wear a baseball hat backwards? Why do we clap? What do people think about all day? Decoder Ring explores questions and topics you didn't know you were curious about.<br><br>In our first episode, we ask: What happened to the laugh track? For nearly five decades, it was ubiquitous, but beginning in the early 2000s, it fell out of sitcom fashion. What happened? How did we get from Beverly Hillbillies to 30 Rock? We meet the man who created the laugh track, which originated as a homemade piece of technology, and trace that technology’s fall and the rise of a more modern idea about humor. With the help of historians, laugh track obsessives, the showrunners of One Day at a Time and the director of Sports Night, we wonder if the laugh track was about something bigger than laughter.
Apr 30, 2018
Introducing Decoder Ring
Decoder Ring is the new podcast from Slate! Each month, host Willa Paskin will decode a cultural question, idea, or habit, and help figure out what it means and why it matters. Our first episode drops April 30th, see you then.&nbsp;
Apr 25, 2018