Episode 60: Inside the Peabody Awards with Jeff Jones, Lorraine Ali and Marcy Carsey

First off, we hope each and every one of you are staying safe, washing your hands, and keeping somewhat sane during the Coronavirus outbreak of 2020.  We are holding steady and continuing to record the podcast (remotely … so basically we don’t see each other except on computer screens, but thankfully technology has come in handy).  We recorded this one on March 10th before things really went down and USC became a remote campus (we miss the Media Center, but it is necessary for our team to stay away). This week we bring you a special episode about The Peabody AwardsHenry has been a juror since 2013 and invited several of his fellow “Peabuddies” to USC for a discussion about the importance of the awards and how they are different from the Emmy, Grammy or Academy Awards.  Henry’s “Peabuddies” are Jeffrey P. Jones, the Director of the Peabody Awards, Marcy Carsey, longtime television producer of shows like Roseanne and That 70’s Show, and Lorraine Ali, TV, Culture, and Media Critic at the LA Times.  Henry and Colin dive deep into the gravitas of the awards which recognize “stories that matter” through a mix of artistic achievement and social impact.  The Peabody Awards are often the first to recognize innovative new talents and have been ahead of the curve in reflecting the push towards more diverse and inclusive content.  Although they don’t discuss judging specifics, they do shed light on the deliberative process of Peabody judging and how 19 peers, from TV producers, journalists, critics, scholars, etc. must unanimously vote on award winners.  The judges feel that it is important to say “this is special” when awarding a Peabody, but they also change their minds during the judging process as each judge brings a new perspective to the discussion. They tell us that debating is fun and stimulating (don’t you want to be a fly on that wall?!).   Listen in as Henry, Colin and the rest of the “Peabuddies” consider how race, industry backgrounds, and diversity of the judges can have an impact on The Peabody Awards. They talk about how TV can pivot faster towards cultural movements which has created an exciting “firehose” of content. Looking for podcasts, TV shows, and other things to binge during your period of self-isolation?  Check out the episode notes below for some suggestions!

Here are some of the references from this episode, for those who want to dig a little deeper:

TV Shows, web series, and extended video formats mentioned in this podcast:
Random Acts of Flyness
The Good Place
Louis C.K.’s “Horace and Pete” (like Playhouse 90)
The Handmaid’s Tale
Game of Thrones
Our Boys
Beyonce’s Lemonade

Radio Shows and Podcasts mentioned in this podcast: 
The Green Hornet
Amos ‘n’ Andy
Quiz Shows
Mars Patel podcast 
Ear Hustle
Have You Heard George’s Podcast?

Movies Mentioned in this podcast: 
12 Angry Men

Documentaries mentioned in this podcast: 
William Stott, Documentary Expression and Thirties America – “reportage”
Lorraine Hansberry: Sighted Eyes, Feeling Heart
Jazz Ambassadors
Sheikh Jarrah, My Neighborhood
Erika Cohn’s The Judge
Multi-part docs – O.J.: Made in America, Leaving Neverland
Selena Gomez immigration series
Surviving R. Kelly
Lorena Bobbitt series
Steven Spielberg

Other Peabody Award Recipients Mentioned in this podcast:
More than Mean 
Steven Universe (Rebecca Sugar
Homecoming King & Patriot Act

Walter Kronkite quote, “You count your Emmys, you cherish your Peabodys.”

Peabody Mantra: “Stories that matter”

Larry Grossberg,  “We all possess different mattering maps…”

Sheila Nevins

Grand Theft Auto

Emerging VoicesIssa Rae, Donald Glover, Hasan Minhaj, Aziz Ansari

Newton Minow, “vast wasteland”

Oscar Gandy – Pay-per-view world

Peabody Ceremony in LA

Rita Moreno lifetime achievement award acceptance speech last year

Share your thoughts via Twitter with Henry and Colin and also through email at [email protected]!

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