Listen now: Summer blockbusters are in season, voter focus on social issues and ways to save money on food

<p>Tom Cruise poses for the media during the 'Top Gun Maverick' UK premiere at a central London cinema, on Thursday, May 19, 2022.</p>

Alberto Pezzali – stringer, AP

Summer blockbuster season traditionally begins Memorial Day weekend. While theaters are still recovering from closures and fewer customers since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, expectations were sky-high coming into this weekend thanks to the sequel to a favorite of the 1980s.

Tom Cruise is back in the cockpit of his fighter jet in “Top Gun: Maverick,” which leads the discussion in this week’s episode of Streamed & Screened. It was joined by another film that was expected to bring out movie-goers in “The Bob’s Burgers Movie.”

But if the pandemic taught us anything, it’s that you can still have a great experience on the smaller screen of your living room. A pair of streaming heavyweights dropped leading into the weekend in “Obi-Wan Kenobi” (Disney+) and “Stranger Things” (Netflix). 

On top of that, host Bruce Miller squeezes in an interview with the one and only Danny Boyle ahead of the release of his new show “Pistol” on Hulu.

Even if you had a wet weekend, there was plenty of entertainment to keep you occupied. 

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Emotional vs. pragmatic concerns

Americans said inflation is their No. 1 concern in a recent poll, along with worries about political extremism, crime and immigration. But what has been dominating the news of late? The trial involving Amber Heard and ex-husband Johnny Depp.

In this episode of The Ethical Life, Scott Rada and Rick Kyte discus why most voters seem to focus more on social issues rather than on policies that might fix the problems they care about the most. It’s a fascinating discussion you won’t want to miss.

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Ways to keep food costs down

Grocery bills might be up 10%, but unlike your mortgage, rent or car payment, prices are not fixed. In this week’s edition of PennyWise, Teri Barr talked with Kimberly Palmer, a personal finance expert with NerdWallet, about six steps you can take to save money on food.

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Forecasting weather for industries

The most recent episode is a true lesson into the industry of meteorology. When you think of weather forecasts, you likely think about television news or The Weather Channel. But there are industries that rely on forecasts for operational purposes, whether it’s to keep employees safe or to help predict trends.

The team is joined by special guest Matt Lanza, who is managing editor and meteorologist for Space City Weather. He is a meteorologist in Houston’s energy sector and previously worked as a broadcast meteorologist.

After giving a brief summer weather outlook, Lanza discusses what goes into making long-range forecasts, the role that meteorologists play for the energy industry and his background covering Hurricane Harvey.

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Same laws but different justice

The Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia produces a weekly podcast call After the Monuments, which is co-hosted by Pulitzer-Prize winning columnist Michael Paul Williams and Kelli Lemon, that discusses topics tied to racial issues in America.

Virginia, like many states, is navigating changes to marijuana laws. In this latest episode, Lemon talks with Sheba Williams, founder and executive director of No Left Turns, a re-entry organization for individuals being released from the department of corrections on marijuana related charges and otherwise. They discuss how laws may be the same for all, but the justice carried out is often different.

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How good are the Brewers?

The Best Podcast in Baseball from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch returned this week and in advance of the Cardinals’ series with the Milwaukee Brewers, host Derrick Goold spoke with Todd Rosiak, senior baseball writer at the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, to talk about “the best team on paper in Brewers history.”

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Data review reveals interesting trends

On this episode of Behind the Headlines, host Teri Barr discusses the reporting from a New York news organization. David Wilcox, features editor for The Citizen in Auburn, New York, realized rising suicide and overdose statistics told another story about the COVID-19 pandemic. Wilcox had been interested in mental health numbers, both pre-pandemic and during the peak in 2020 and 2021, and you may be surprised by what his reporting uncovered.

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Keeping up with national news

We recently launched a new daily podcast called Hot off the Wire. We release episodes each weekday, provide an “In case you missed it” episode for the weekend and periodically drop bonus episodes on single topics. 

This past week more cases of monkeypox were reported. What is it? Should we be worried? We offer some answers in a special episode thanks to an Associated Press interview with an advisor from the World Health Organization.

There was also the deadly shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. With so many reports and details changing rapidly, we compiled key information into a special, single episode.

And of course, we have the regular daily episodes. Catch the latest one below.