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BADLANDS is a new true-crime anthology podcast from Jake Brennan, creator and host of the award-winning music and true crime podcast DISGRACELAND. Season One of BADLANDS, entitled “Hollywoodland,” explores the true crimes and scandalous careers of Hollywood’s most infamous stars. Each week, new episodes detail the mysterious death of Marilyn Monroe, Bruce Lee’s relationship with Hong Kong street fighters, John Holmes’ role in the bloody Wonderland Murders, and the wild rise, fall, and rise a ...
 
When the only way to discover who you are means you have to enter into the badlands, you break the rules. In our INTO THE BADLANDS AFTER SHOW we discuss the trials Sunny and Veil must go through in order to learn more about Sunny’s past. Tune in here for reviews, recaps and in-depth discussions of the latest episodes, as well as the insider scoop from cast and crew members on the show.
 
Ernesto Gutierrez Jr. was born in McAllen, Texas in 1971 and he is a third-generation Trucker with a passion for trucking. Ernesto enjoys driving a truck! It is his life and his passion. He also enjoys helping truckers with the resources to help them succeed. Ernesto remembers back in the early 60s and 70s when he used to ride along with his dad in his cabover. They enjoyed many trips together. He taught Ernesto a lot in his young life.
 
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Hey BADLANDS fans: Need a little more true crime in your life? Yeah, us too. If you loved Season 1: HOLLYWOODLAND, we want to introduce you to host Jake Brennan's other show—the rock and roll true-crime podcast that started it all, DISGRACELAND. Now in its 8th season, DISGRACELAND is an award-winning anthology series about musicians getting away wi…
 
On today's episode, we revisit the topic of meritocracy and begin discussing Michael Sandel's recent book The Tyranny of Merit, which argues that meritocracy is "a hollow political project that reflects an impoverished conception of citizenship and freedom...". Meritocracy poisons our civic culture by dividing society into winners and losers, and b…
 
As captivating as actress Lana Turner was on screen, her personal life off screen was more dramatic than any movie could hope to be. Her father, turning up dead over a poker pot. Her co-star, Sean Connery, throwing down with pre-Bond panache when her boyfriend threatened to beat her up. And that same boyfriend, Johnny Stompanato, winding up dead in…
 
Natalie Wood was one of the most loved child stars of the silver screen in the mid-20th century, and the rare celebrity who was able to transition gracefully into grown-up roles all while maintaining an air of dignity and grace. She acted alongside Orson Welles, James Dean, Warren Beatty, and Bette Davis, and many of her roles remain iconic decades…
 
Dennis Hopper revolutionized American cinema by bringing the counterculture to the mainstream with his 1969 film Easy Rider. But he also lived his life in tandem with his art, on the fringes of society and sanity. His stubborn attitude and crazy ideas quickly transformed him from a hippie prophet into a longhaired loser. Hopper’s journey from succe…
 
Dennis Hopper revolutionized American cinema by bringing the counterculture to the mainstream with his 1969 film Easy Rider. But he also lived his life in tandem with his art, on the fringes of society and sanity. His stubborn attitude and crazy ideas quickly transformed him from a hippie prophet into a longhaired loser. Hopper’s journey from succe…
 
On today's episode, we continue our discussion of metaethics, explaining some of the traditional philosophical problems in metaethics, which have led some philosophers to think that anti-realist or relativist views of morality might actually be right. Toby Napoletano, Michael Hughes
 
Superman may be more powerful than a locomotive, but George Reeves, the actor who famously portrayed the Man of Steel on TV in the 1950s, was very much a mortal man. Did George Reeves really take his own life in June 1959, as the official report stated? Was he actually murdered by an impulsive girlfriend? Or was his death a highly orchestrated hit …
 
Bruce Lee got into so much trouble as a kid in Hong Kong that his parents banished him to the place of his birth: America. There he found all kinds of new trouble to get into. He upset kung fu traditionalists with his revolutionary style of fighting. He challenged long-held perceptions in racist Hollywood. He was an outsider determined to change th…
 
In this episode, we begin a discussion about the possibility that morality is all relative, subject, or perhaps merely opinion. We give some objections to the some of the simpler forms of moral relativism, and consider some of the more sophisticated replies. Toby Napoletano, Michael HughesDi The Badlands
 
John Holmes unexpectedly found fame in the 1970s with a freakishly large appendage that proved a gateway into the burgeoning adult entertainment industry. He appeared in over 2,000 porn films and is alleged to have slept with over 14,000 women. But a severe drug habit put him in close contact with some strange bedfellows in the Los Angeles underwor…
 
A century ago, at the birth of movie superstardom, silent film star Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle was at the center of a scandal that rocked Hollywood to its core. He was accused of a murderous sex crime so depraved that it turned the nation not only against him but against Hollywood itself. It led to the trial of the century, and a test of whether Ameri…
 
In this episode, we discuss some of the psychological findings on the powerful and the wealthy. Does having power or wealth make people less empathetic, more stingy, and generally worse? What kinds of people come to have power? And what can be done about the corrosive effects of power? Also, some really, really cool metatheory discussion. Toby Napo…
 
River Phoenix was a once-in-a-generation talent. In the 1980s, a decade known for artifice and excess, he brought raw acting chops to performances in Stand by Me, Running on Empty, and My Own Private Idaho. His career was only just getting started when he died tragically at the age of 23 outside a notorious nightclub in Hollywood. The story of his …
 
River Phoenix was a once-in-a-generation talent. In the 1980s, a decade known for artifice and excess, he brought raw acting chops to performances in Stand by Me, Running on Empty, and My Own Private Idaho. His career was only just getting started when he died tragically at the age of 23 outside a notorious nightclub in Hollywood. The story of his …
 
The conspiracy theories surrounding Marilyn Monroe’s death in 1962 continue to entertain the imaginations of those obsessed with celebrity and scandal. The stories, many of them fantastical and one of them true, feature cameos by the likes of President John F. Kennedy, his brother Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, and Rat Pack members Frank Sinat…
 
Marilyn Monroe is one of the greatest Hollywood stars of all time. She rose from orphan to icon by creating an on screen character America could not peel their eyes away from. And she did it all while battling anxiety, depression and addiction. Along the way she bedded, married, and otherwise conquered America’s most impressive men — Joe DiMaggio, …
 
Marilyn Monroe is one of the greatest Hollywood stars of all time. She rose from orphan to icon by creating an on screen character America could not peel their eyes away from. And she did it all while battling anxiety, depression and addiction. Along the way she bedded, married, and otherwise conquered America’s most impressive men — Joe DiMaggio, …
 
BADLANDS is a new true-crime anthology podcast from Jake Brennan, creator and host of the award-winning music and true crime podcast DISGRACELAND. Season 1 of BADLANDS, entitled “HOLLYWOODLAND,” explores the true crimes and scandalous careers of Hollywood’s most infamous stars. Listen each week for new stories on the mysterious death of Marilyn Mon…
 
Launching May 5th, BADLANDS is a new true-crime anthology podcast from Jake Brennan, creator and host of the award-winning music and true crime podcast DISGRACELAND. Season 1 of BADLANDS, entitled “HOLLYWOODLAND,” explores the true crimes and scandalous careers of Hollywood’s most infamous stars. Listen each week for new stories on the mysterious d…
 
In this episode, we try to understand why it is that Twitter seems to be so awful, and can be so easily weaponized to destroy someone's reputation or career. We focus on a proposal from C. Thi Nguyen (University of Utah), who argues that one of the major problems with Twitter is that it gamifies communication, and in so doing, it warps the purposes…
 
Former Trump official John Ratcliffe (National Intelligence Director) recently suggested that there would be reports from the government that suggest the presence of alien spacecraft on Earth. Some members of the public, in response to this, have come to believe in alien visitation less. When would it be rational to believe that unexplained observa…
 
In this episode, we discuss the idea that a significant portion of the population is being irrational, or "detached from reality", when it comes to politics. What does it mean to be irrational, and what are different ways that one could be irrational? Toby Napoletano, Michael Hughes
 
In this episode, we take a look at the second (and more famous) red scare, led by Joseph McCarthy. What were the conditions that led to that scare, and how did it end? What parallels and lessons can we draw for today's political hysteria, spearheaded by Trump? Toby Napoletano, Michael Hughes
 
In today's episode, we discuss the history and legacy of the first red scare, just after World War I. What were the forces that led to the anti-leftist hysteria and political persecution of people that were thought of as Communist sympathizers? And how did the first red scare lay the groundwork for future red-baiting of progressives? Can we learn a…
 
In today's episode, we begin to take stock of the frightening state of American democracy, where it is good news that the sitting president probably won't steal an election. Why is the situation so dire? How did we get here? What do we do going forward, and can we come back from this? We focus on the epistemic estrangement of liberals and conservat…
 
In today's episode, we begin to take stock of the frightening state of American democracy, where it is good news that the sitting president probably won't steal an election. Why is the situation so dire? How did we get here? What do we do going forward, and can we come back from this? Two of the main ingredients to the problem that we discuss in th…
 
In this episode, we discuss the Supreme Court's decisions to allow or prohibit various extensions to the deadlines for mail-in ballots in the 2020 presidential election. In particular, we focus on Justice Kavanaugh's decision to prohibit a six-day extension on the receipt of mail-in ballots in Wisconsin, and Justice Kagan's dissenting opinion. What…
 
In this episode, we discuss Hannah Arendt's classic Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report On the Banality of Evil. We discuss the sometimes surprising psychological underpinnings of evil, and the way that evil flourishes in the absence of thought. We also discuss some of the lessons that can be drawn from Arendt's discussion of Eichmann. Toby Napoletano,…
 
In today's episode, we discuss the recent report from Mike Pompeo's Commission on Unalienable Rights. We go through the document which, unfortunately, is largely self-congratulatory and intellectually vacuous, and discuss the relationship of the United States to the human rights project. Toby Napoletano, Michael Hughes…
 
In today's episode, we continue our discussion of the Bostock vs. Clayton County, Georgia Supreme Court case, which, in a surprise decision, extended Title VII of the Civil Rights act to protect gay, lesbian, and transgender people against employment discrimination. This time, we focus on some of the more confusing aspects of Alito's dissent. Toby …
 
In today's episode, we begin our discussion of the Bostock vs. Clayton County, Georgia Supreme Court case, which, in a surprise decision, extended Title VII of the Civil Rights act to protect gay, lesbian, and transgender people against employment discrimination. We explain the decision, give some of the historical background, and discuss some of A…
 
In this episode, we finish our discussion of the ethics of protest, and of whether or not violence in protest can be justified. Can thinking about the ethics of war help us understand whether violence in protest can be justified? Does the preservation of one's dignity sometimes require people to engage in acts of destruction? We also discuss the di…
 
In this episode, we begin our discussion of the ethics of protest, and of whether or not violence in protest can be justified. In the first part, we ask about the nature of protest itself, and discuss some of the sociology concerning the public's perception of protest, particularly as it relates the protests against police brutality against black A…
 
In this episode, we chat with Arthur Lieber about his recent book Political Introverts (How Empathetic Voters Can Help Save American Politics). Lieber explains how a significant, introverted portion of the electorate is turned off by the loudness and boastfulness of our politics. If politics can be made more slower and more thoughtful, he argues, t…
 
In today's episode, we discuss the ways in which economic inequality interacts makes a pandemic worse. As usual, the economically vulnerable are likely to suffer more, and in this case, the presence of economically vulnerable populations makes it harder to combat. Toby Napoletano, Michael Hughes, Hanna Gunn…
 
In this episode, we continue our discussion of the coronavirus pandemic, focusing on the difficulties in weighing up the health and economic costs, and how this complicates figuring out what to do. Toby Napoletano, Michael Hughes, Hanna GunnDi The Badlands
 
In today's episode, we begin our discussion on the coronavirus pandemic, focusing specifically on the epistemic challenges that face us as we try to figure out what to do, and the epistemic blunders that helped get us where we are. We will be talking about the challenges of balancing health risks and economic risks, and then the ways that inequalit…
 
In this episode, we address some of the common (sometimes outlandish) anti-Sanders narratives that have been ubiquitous in recent weeks, especially as it looked like, briefly, he might be the front runner. Would Bernie get anything done as president? Is he electable? Is he a socialist? That and more. Toby Napoletano | Michael Hughes…
 
In this episode, we talk about the state of the Democratic primary, and the extraordinary influence of the tiny Iowa caucus on the process. Why does it have such an outsized influence? Should it? Is it unfair to other parts of the electorate? And are there ways to do it better?Di The Badlands
 
In this episode, we attempt a philosophical sketch of Joe Biden. In particular, we discuss how his general approach to politics and representation, which focuses on his individual qualities and experiences, rather than policy and underlying political principles, differs from progressives like Sanders and Warren. Toby Napoletano, Michael Hughes…
 
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