Low Key

What's behind the door?

Aaron Lanton, Keith Dennie, and Tim Molloy look at pop culture through a racial lens, focusing on the low-key things some people might miss to discuss their deeper meanings.
Latest Episode3/23/2020

DC Universe's 'Harley Quinn': How to Go From Lackey to Supervillian

Season 1, Ep. 57
DC Universe’s Harley Quinn doesn’t give a f**k about offending people as the first scene demonstrates by showing a yacht full of billionaires robbed and ripped apart. The show is meant to shock audiences. But it also serves as a great example of how R-rated comic book material can allow for an intelligent subversion of tropes and dark humor that reveals why we connect to these broken characters.Harley herself shines in every episode in both success and failure as she strives to go from the Joker’s lackey to the first modern female supervillian. It sounds simple enough but the show reveals an actual truth of comics - female supervillians are non-existent with our only example suffering a face worse than Arkham. A crew for Harley is assembled to help her become noticed by the Legion of Doom, leading to hijnx that are often hard to explain to anyone who hasn’t already seen the show although we try on this episode.The mature content in animated DC films seems like an intentional way to set themselves apart from Marvel’s relatively kid-friendly animation. Justice League Dark: Apokolips War, scheduled for release on May 5, 2020, has a R-rated trailer that imagines a worse case scenario for Earth where heroes lose and die to Darkseid’s army. Marvel wins in Hollywood but struggles to reach the high bar set by DC’s animated films and shows. Harley Quinn is another example of DC getting it right. Come find out why for the next 47 minutes and don’t forget to follow us on @thelowkeypod.Episode Breakdown1:33 - Overall impressions6:30 - Best moments in the show13:12 - Talking the show creators16:16 - Subverting classic characterizations of heroes and villians19:44 - Worst comic book movies of all-time24:13 - Is the show entirely in Harley’s head?27:50 - A tangent to Scrooged (1988) courtesy of Carol Kane29:52 - Final thoughts on the show33:20 - Keith and Aaron convince Tim to watch Netflix’s ‘Love Is Blind’39:55 - Keith asks about a neighbor problem

2020 Movies We're Excited for, From Tenet to Black Widow to Saw

Season 1, Ep. 51
2020 movies have a lot to live up to—2019's movies were some of the best in years. On the latest Low Key podcast, my fellow co-hosts and I nerd out on the 2020 movies we hope will live up to 2019's high standards, fromTenettoBirds of Preyto Chris Rock's take onSawto, uh,Sonic the Hedgehog.We like all kinds of movies. But on the Low Key, we especially talk about fan-focused films, with a weakness for comic books and sci-fi. So we're very intrigued by 2020 movies includingBlack Widow,No Time to DieandA Quiet Place 2.We take some side trips to talk aboutStar Wars,Uncut Gems, andParasite, too. And we talk about Memphis roller coaster the Zippin Pippin, God rest its soul.By the way: For some of the indie 2020 movies theMovieMaker Magazineteam is excited about—fromPromising Young WomantoThe 40-Year-Old VersiontoThe ClimbtoNever Rarely Sometimes Always—check out the upcoming issue of MovieMaker magazine.Here are some highlights of our 2020 movies episode, with timestamps:1:15:Sonic the Hedgehog!5:16:A quick aside about Jaleel White.7:15:Morbius!Birds of Prey!11:30:Black Widow!12:00:"Look at us with all this action shit."17:15:Coming to America!23:40:AStar Warsaside: "At least let the threat be something different."29:30:"Everybody knows about the Mid-South Fairgrounds outside of Memphis."30:00:Love for Dollywood and Dolly Parton34:20:"2019 was my favorite movie year in like 20 years."36:30: Go watch the trailer for Christopher Nolan'sTenet.39:57:No Time to Dieand James Bond vs.Mission: Impossible's Ethan Hunt.46:00:Breaking news, to Aaron: Chris Rock is joining theSawfranchise.49:30:AQuiet Place 2!52:30: ABloodshotdisagreement.56:"I like theJohn Wickfranchise more thanThe Matrixfranchise."57:45:"I can't believe we're mentioning Keanu Reeves without mentioningBill & Ted."58:30:Top Gun 2!Follow us on @thelowkeypod.