Sandler vs. Samberg: Unorthodox Episode 1

Tablet’s new podcast features guests A.J. Jacobs and Elna Baker talking family reunions, Jews and Mormons, and more

July 30, 2015

Unorthodox, Tablet’s newest podcast, is officially here. Part of Slate’s Panoply network, Unorthodox is a smart, fresh, fun take on Jewish news and culture.

The podcast is hosted by editor-at-large Mark Oppenheimer and features senior writer Liel Leibovitz and myself. Each week we’ll sound off on the latest headlines and talk to special guests, including a non-Jew with a question he or she has always wanted to ask about Judaism.

On our first episode, Sandler vs. Samberg, we talk about the new movie Pixels, the latest in a string of films from Sandler that has some of us wondering exactly how bad a script has to be for him to turn it down. We also discuss gay marriage in Israel and the tragic suicide of Faigy Mayer, a 30-year-old woman who five years ago left the Belz Hasidic community in which she was raised.

New York Times bestselling author A.J. Jacobs joins us with news about his latest project: hosting the world’s largest family reunion. He undertook the endeavor after discovering he was part of a massive family tree that includes President Obama, Judge Judy, and yes, Adam Sandler.

Writer and ‘This American Life’ contributor Elna Baker describes leaving the Mormon church (which she chronicles in her excellent memoir, The New York Regional Mormon Singles Halloween Dance), and asks why non-practicing Jews still get to call themselves Jewish, which isn’t the case for Mormons.

Let us know what you think of Unorthodox at [email protected].

Unorthodox is a smart, fresh, fun weekly take on Jewish news and culture hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick, and Liel Leibovitz. You can listen to individual episodes here or subscribe on iTunes.

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