Hi gang! It’s been a minute since we’ve looked at stats (or really talked at all)! We did 28 episodes of Ticklish Business this year—that includes bonus episodes and sneak peeks—and it’s hard not to think this might have been the strongest year in the show’s history! And because it’s the year of year end lists why not celebrate Ticklish Biz 2022 with an exploration of our 10 most popular episodes this year.
NOTE: All of these episodes can be found wherever you get podcasts, including Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
HONORABLE MENTIONS: These just barely made the cut including our amazing interview with Nancy Olson Livingstone (#143), our sneak peek devoted to Baz Luhrmann’s 2022 feature Elvis, author Luis Reyes joining us to talk about Latinos in Old Hollywood (#139), the This Ends at Prom team celebrating back to school with Grease (#141) and Deborah Landis talking our top 3 favorite classic costumes (#140); we honored May the 4th with a talk on Star Wars: A New Hope (#134) and gave Sidney Poitier a posthumous Top 3 (#127); author Mark Harris sat down with us to honor Peter Bogdanovich (#120); we celebrate Dorothy Dandridge and went long talking about Carmen Jones (#128), and author Tom Santopietro talked all about To Kill a Mockingbird (#131).
Now, here we are: the top 10 most popular Ticklish Biz episodes of 2022!
While we’d already done a Peter Bogdanovich tribute we couldn’t pass up the opportunity when director Paul Feig offered to come on the show and discuss his favorite movie. We discussed the love of Barbara Streisand and whether Ryan O’Neal is a compelling leading man.
9. #130 Nightmare Alley (1947 vs. 2021)
A change of plans saw our planned Patreon-exclusive episode on the dueling Nightmare Alley features become a main episode. We looked at Guillermo del Toro’s visually stunning film to ask how it held up against the original Tyrone Power-starring original. We had very mixed thoughts.
Since the podcast began we’ve started every new year with a look back on the classic films we discovered the year prior. These tend to be our most popular episodes so it’s no surprise this made the 10 (though it is surprising it’s ranked so low). The year 2021 saw us honoring the likes of Anna May Wong and Judy Holliday.
Samantha is our resident Elizabeth Taylor fan so it was no surprise we’d be doing an episode around her at some point. We celebrated our favorite Taylor titles, from A Place in the Sun to The VIPs.
We don’t often get starstruck doing the show but when Todd Fisher, son of Debbie Reynolds and brother of Carrie Fisher, agreed to come on the show we all collectively lost it. Todd didn’t just let us gush about his mom and our favorite movies, he filled the episode with exclusive stories and showed off some of his Debbie and Carrie memorabilia! It was a recording session we’ll cherish forever.
It was a dual celebration this episode as we honored both Jean Harlow’s birthday and the 90th anniversary of our favorite Harlow feature, 1932’s Red Dust. Harlow biographer Darrell Rooney joined us as we discussed why the feature remains so sexy, the distinctions between Harlow’s persona and Mary Astors, and why pre-Code Clark Gable is the best Gable.
One of the biggest misconceptions that us Old Hollywood lovers always have to repeat: classic films are sexy! And we decided to celebrate the stars that make us sweat with this episode, our first to crack 1,000 downloads in 2022! We talked about the sexiest stars, both expected and unexpected, and played a few questionable games.
We couldn’t pass up Judy Garland’s centennial and who better to join us than Izzy of the fabulous YouTube channel, Be Kind Rewind. She shared her favorite Judy Garland films and we all agreed there was one film we didn’t want to include.
Anytime we talk about Marilyn Monroe it’s a big deal, but you also need a guest who can suit Marilyn’s legend. Lucky for us we had Marilyn superfan, actress, and author Holly Madison joining us! Holly and the Ticklish crew discussed how Marilyn’s film work in the 1960s was a gamechanger, and where it might have led her had she lived longer. And because it was around the time of Kim Kardashian’s infamous Met Gala appearance, we had to ask Holly about her thoughts on the dress.
To have our Veronica Lake centennial as our number 1 episode of the year means a lot. It wasn’t just that it was an episode where, free of guests, Samantha and I could just chat about our love for Lake, but the fact that it was about Lake herself is what shined. There wasn’t any significant celebration of Lake’s centennial, short of a great Criterion tribute, so I felt protective honoring the woman I’ve taken into my heart. This was a special episode and I think it shows in how we dispelled rumors, celebrated Lake’s acting, and asked that someone release more of her features.
As always, this show doesn’t work without the amazing listeners who help support us. We thank you for loving the show and can’t wait to do more in 2023. What was your favorite episode of 2022?