It's been a hot minute since we released season 2 of our pop-culture podcast Strong Opinions Loosely Held, which means you're probably in desperate need of some witty commentary for your commute. Well, the wait is finally over. Your host Elisa Kreisinger is back for season 3.
The five-episode season centers entirely around meme culture: what they are, who creates them, and how they impact the world around us. And Elisa's not alone. She's got a rad lineup of special guests, like tech experts and meme creators, who are here to share their strong opinions on everything meme-worthy. Check out the complete season below, and get ready to binge it all in one sitting.
Episode 1: Digital Black Face
Season 3 kicks off with cultural critic Lauren Michele Jackson on “Digital Black Face.” The issue, similar to other forms of black face, is a culture-wide problem. What began with people searching for reaction GIFs on social media has transformed into thousands of us reinforcing archaic cultural stereotypes. Join Elisa and Lauren for an episode full of cultural commentary as they dive into the celebrity memes we’ve all seen before.
Episode 2: Peaches On Fleek
In this episode, Elisa takes a look behind the memes — at the people who create them. Memes have a habit of rapidly weaving their way into the fabric of American culture. But what happens when we don’t give credit where credit is due, especially when others are profiting off an idea that isn’t their own? Elisa interviews Wired reporter and digital producer Emma Grey Ellis about the pros, the cons, and the in-betweens of viral profitable content.
Episode 3: Minds Behind The Meme: Woke Charlotte
In a society driven largely by social media, memes have the ability to spur conversations both on and offline. Such is the case with “Woke Charlotte,” the meme that reimagines how the iconic '90s character would react to her friends’ ignorant comments. Woke Charlotte’s creators, Chelsea Fairless and Lauren Garroni, chat with Elisa about how they use their meme to spread commentary on hot-button issues.
Episode 4: The Great Firewall Of China
From China (where the internet is heavily regulated) to the United States (where the internet reigns freely), meme culture is omnipresent. So much so that author and technologist An Xiao Mina likes to think of memes as street art, a form of media that can be created and accessed by almost anyone. Listen as Elisa joins up with An to discuss this art form and its role in social change.
Episode 5: Mind Behind The Meme: Quinta Brunson
In the final episode of the season, Elisa meets up with Quinta Brunson, the woman behind some of our favorite memes from the past years. The meme creator and former Buzzfeed producer discusses her journey and what it means to be a young comedian of color who’s also the face of her own creations. Spoiler alert: Being a meme creator is not as easy as it sounds.