Hot Docs Podcast Festival 2019 is officially in the books.
Still Processing is co-hosted by New York Times Magazine Staff Writer, Jenna Wortham, and New York Times Critic at Larger, Wesley Morris. Each week, the show tackles topics ranging from art, music, TV, movies, and politics. Still Processing die-hards Stan for the show because of Wortham and Morris’ authentic voices, passionate opinions, and delightful chemistry. And it helps that they approach sensitive topics like sex, race, and identity in as relatable a manner as anyone working in the media today.
Monday’s show played to a sold-out house that braved a blizzard on their way to Hot Docs cinema. Hundreds of stylish-looking twenty-somethings streamed into the theatre as sexy R&B music warmed up the crowd. Before Still Processing kicked off, the audience listened to a clip from a local podcast called Girly Mags, “a nostalgic and silly 90/2000-style teen magazine podcast.” Girly Mags was one of 12 podcasts (selected from over 100) chosen to run before the festival’s headlining shows.
Wortham and Morris then took the stage for a breezy two-hour conversation that delivered every bit of the wit, humour, and charm that endears them to fans. After a few moments of small talk, the two hosts dove into a discussion that took advantage of actually being in a room with their listeners.
Framing the conversation around sexual power dynamics, Wortham and Morris threw up images on the Hot Docs’ movie screen and then debated each subject’s status as a “top, bottom, or something else entirely.” The slides ranged from obvious (Tina Turner, doubtlessly a power top) to hilarious (the barber who gave Mark Zuckerberg his frightful hairline).
From the moment they graced the stage, Wortham and Morris had the audience in the palm of their hands. The Still Processing hosts deftly covered each topic (including Disney’s racial politics and Popeye’s new chicken sandwich) with the same delicious blend of shade, indignation, and cultural insight. The laughs came hard, and they came often, while the audience nodded and threw their hands up as though they were at church.
I’ve been to film festivals, concerts, book signings, Q&A’s, and comic book conventions, and now I can put a podcast festival on the list. And now that I have a podcast fest under my best, I can say that it delivers everything you hope for and then some.
Hot Docs Podcast Festival offers a series of top-shelf podcasts while also taking time to spotlight local content. And in addition to the live shows, the festival provides classes, creator forums, and pitch competitions to incubate the next generation of great podcasters. On top of that, attending a live show puts you face to face with all the fans who share at least one of your podcasting fixations. Attending Hot Docs Podcast Festival presents an excellent opportunity to network, forge new friendships, and experience a fun night out.
For more information on Hot Docs Podcast Festival, click here.