Podcast Review: The Hottest Take

By Jasmine Chan

Hilarious, bite-sized commentary

Bill Simmons is a regular fixture in the American entertainment scene. He’s a sportswriter, author, talk show host, and the founder and CEO of the sports and pop culture website, The Ringer. Produced by The Ringer, The Hottest Take is Simmons’s newest project, where he and his friends discuss and debate juicy hot topics to infuse a sprinkle of laughter on your workout or morning commute.

Unlike most other podcasts out there, each episode is only six to eight minutes long, so it’s an easy listening experience that doesn’t require much commitment. Each episode starts with the host saying, “I have the floor,” before sharing his or her take on a controversial issue. 

The podcast covers a diverse range of topics, from the British Royal Family to snooze buttons, champagne to the NBA. Rather than formally dissecting a heated topic, the outspoken hosts deliver crazy and outrageous ideas in a light-hearted debate, like nominating a Tik Tok video for a ‘Best Picture’ Oscar or universally standardizing the snooze time on our phone alarms.

In the ‘Car Tech’ episode, the host discusses whether modern car technology is turning us into “weak children,” as he confesses his heavy dependency on the backup cameras in cars. He also disparages the lane departure alarm, as it causes drivers to lose their autonomy over the vehicle. 

The host ends the episode by suggesting driverless cars kill the joy of driving and that we should not allow cars to “take over our destiny.” This episode is interesting in that it pushes us to reevaluate our relationship with automation; although some of the ideas are silly and absurd, they are utterly relatable and entertaining. 

The Hottest Take is best for pop culture lovers, but also suitable for those who want a break from dense, long-form podcasts. The hosts’ boisterous and often unpopular opinions provoke critical thinking in a fun way, highlighting its importance in our understanding of the world. –JC

theringer.com/the-hottest-take

Cover art courtesy of The Ringer. 

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