Let’s pre-celebrate Valentine’s Day with a conversation with Scott Meslow, author of the brand-new book, From Hollywood With Love: The Rise and Fall (and Rise Again) of the Romantic Comedy (Dey Street Books)! We get into how Scott defines RomComs, what inspired him to chronicle their history, what these movies say about audiences & audience expectations, the entertainment industry, criticism, gender, and diversity trends, and plenty more. We talk about how he winnowed down his mega-list of key RomComs to 15 (+1 unmade movie), the one movie he hated having to cut, what led to the aforementioned rise-fall-rise of the genre, which movies haven’t aged well and which have grown better, the ways in which self-aware subversion of RomCom tropes degenerated into self-conscious excuses for making the same old movie, our shared love for Judy Greer, and why he’s pulling for a Netflix RomCom Cinematic Universe to rival Marvel’s. We also discuss his accidental entry into journalism and his interest in culture writ large, my love for Hudson Hawk, how fandom has taken over the entertainment industry, the actor he thinks should have been a bigger hit, how he ended up with John Wick’s trunk, and more! Give it a listen! And go read From Hollywood With Love!
About our Guest
Scott Meslow is a writer, editor, and critic with over 10 years of experience on the entertainment and culture beat. He writes for publications including GQ, Vulture, The Atlantic, and The Week. His portfolio includes profiles, Q&As, reported features, film and TV reviews, podcasts, and pretty much anything else you might need somebody to write. His first book is From Hollywood With Love: The Rise and Fall (and Rise Again) of the Romantic Comedy.
Follow Scott on Twitter.
Credits: This episode’s music is Fella by Hal Mayforth, used with permission from the artist. The conversation was recorded remotely via Zencastr. I used a Heil PR-40 Dynamic Studio Recording Microphone feeding into a Cloudlifter CL-1 and a Mackie Onyx Blackjack 2×2 USB Recording Interface. All processing and editing done in Adobe Audition CC. Photo of Scott by someone else. It’s on my instagram.