2001: A Space Odyssey

2001 A Space Odyssey asked the big questions and took the cinema goer on a million year journey of the fate of humanity. NEON responds to this challenge, rolls it’s sleeves up and shows how accurately this sci-fi movie portrays ancient hominid behaviour as well as influencing pop culture and even NASA to this day.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Deodato – Also Sprach Zarathustra

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The Handmaid’s Tale & The Running Man

Again you get two for the price of one in an episode. Arnie’s 80’s action fest and the modern thoughtful TV series about women’s rights are eerie echoes of each other. While there can be little doubt as to which is more morally complex, better shot and acted, that may not mean that it is pulling from history as effectively. Because these are dark stories, the history is equally brutal, from Nazi breeding programmes to the rise of fascist regimes this is a horrifying but fascinating episode. NEON walks a tight rope with this one, trying to entertain but also enlighten about some of the worst moment from human history.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: Sunset Lover – Petit Biscuit

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Batman: Gotham by Gaslight

How can a podcast about the real history behind pop culture resist a Victorian era Batman? This one gets as dark as the dark knight. We have Jack the Ripper, H.H. home’s murder hotel and an animated movie not suitable for kids. There’s even a story of a filed concept in early forensic science that will leave you scratching your head how anybody could think it was likely to work. On the more fun side we find out about Chicago’s rivalry with Paris and how America accidentally invented a common theme park ride in an attempt to rival the Eiffel Tower.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Bat For Lashes – Prescilla
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Predator

This is one of the greatest action films of all time. It has Arnie at his prime. It has Stan Winston at his most creative and it has John McTiernan making the mistake of going to a seasonal rainforest where the leaves were falling off. It’s action cinema at its purest, and yet as scary as the Predator is, what the film is really about is one of America’s fears, jungle warfare and America’s obsession in the 20th century of fighting in them. NEON not only talks about the most manly hand shake in history, but also the traumas of fighting in the Philippines and Vietnam.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Alan Silvestri – Predator Main Title
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Star Wars- A New Hope

It’s 1977 and a tiny blockade runner is chased by the scariest triangle in film history. The movie is not just part of cinema history, it leans on the history of cinema. NEON takes you from a galaxy far far away, to feudal Japan and the films of Akira Kurosawa. This episode also looks at how much World War II shaped the look and feel of this sci-fi film. It also has an interesting story of how we nearly ended up with a very different and far worse version of the film.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Nas – Hip Hop is Dead
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Minisode: Ready Player One

Steeped in 80’s pop culture, try tearing us away from giving NEON’s take on Steven Spielberg’s latest blockbuster!

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: Jump – Van Halen

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Raiders of the Lost Ark

Possibly the most perfect action movie of all time, a classic that even the sequels couldn’t better. NEON is not about to challenge the supremacy of such an iconic movie, but it does start some interesting conversations. Firstly is the Ark actually “lost”? The Ethiopians don’t think so, want to know why? NEON explains all. Then there’s the fight around the weird German airplane, NEON reveals that the aircraft in question may not be all that fictional. Add to that bonus information about another classic movie Das Boot and you have another must listen to episode.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: Critical Mass – College

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Star Wars: The Last Jedi

One of the biggest hits, from the biggest movie franchise on the planet, and yet the Last Jedi is also very divisive. This doesn’t deter NEON as the deep dive reveals parallels with another sci-fi franchise Warhammer 40,000 and of course real history. Napoleon gets a look as do Ancient Rome. Perhaps the best scene in the movie involves Snoke and his Praetorian Guard and NEON compares the action of this fictional body guard to the real Roman one, who comes out of the comparison better? Add to that some dark facts about the Nazis and you have a truly epic episode.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: The Prodigy – Diesel Power
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Black Panther

One of the biggest movie hits of 2018 is about an African superhero. NEON starts with Wakanda and then shows parallels that stretch all the way back to the Middle Ages. It’s a great movie that full of fun and action, but also with an important message underlying all the bright colours and CGI. But NEON digs deeper, comparing the fictional country to a real, and fabulously wealthy, African Empire. Then showing how General Okoye had similar dilemmas to a knight living in the 12th and 13th centuries called William Marshal.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Tricky – Christiansands
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Subscribe to the podcast in iTunes and follow us on Twitter.