Pop Culture Happy Hour, NPR’s freewheeling podcast about the latest movies, television, books and music, is shaking things up as it celebrates a decade in production. The podcast is making the leap to a daily show starting in October. The move from a weekly comes as New York Times writer Aisha Harris comes onboard as cohost of the show.
“I’ve been listening to Pop Culture Happy Hour for almost as long as it’s been around, and have been lucky to appear as a guest of the show over the past couple of years,” Harris said in the announcement. “I’m incredibly excited to join and contribute to the team full-time.”
Taylor will begin her cohosting duties in September ahead of the shift to a daily show. She is no stranger to the podcast, having appeared as a regular guest since 2016, covering a variety of pop culture topics. Podcast hosting isn’t new to Harris. She previously was the host of the film and TV podcast Represent during her time working at Slate. Harris joined the New York Times in 2018, first working as the assistant TV editor on the Culture Desk, and then moving to the Opinion Desk in the role of culture editor.
“I’ve read Aisha’s work and listened to her for years. She’s a great critic and great to talk to,” said fellow co-host Linda Holmes. “Adding her to our team is absolutely thrilling to me, and I can’t wait to hear what the show sounds like when we benefit from her contributions full-time.” The podcast’s two other hosts are Stephen Thompson and Glen Weldon.
By having a larger crew of hosts, NPR says Pop Culture Happy Hour will be able to cover more from the pop culture landscape, including film, TV, music, video games and books, including recommendations about what to watch, read and listen to. Anya Grundman, NPR SVP for Programming and Audience Development, said the show has documented the pop culture world with “wit and wisdom” since its debut in 2010. “Over the years, the show has continued to evolve, welcoming a widening range of contributors, guests and topics. With Aisha at the table, the PCHH crew will be able to take their observations and recommendations to a new level of relevance, insight — and fun,” she said.
Pop Culture Happy Hour becomes NPR’s sixth daily podcast, with more sober shows including Up First, Consider This, Short Wave and The Indicator from Planet Money. Until Election Day, the NPR Politics Podcast is also releasing new episodes each weekday.