TV Talk Machine

Hosted by Tim Goodman and Jason Snell

Writer Tim Goodman (former SF Chronicle and Hollywood Reporter TV critic) talks irregularly with Jason Snell about television and other stuff. Released simultaneously worldwide to all international markets. Love to your mothers.

TV Talk Machine art by the late, great Don Asmussen.

Latest Episode: May 2, 2023

255 The Two-Episode Test

This reunion is crossposted from Downstream episode 43. Tim Goodman drops by to discuss his decision to be a TV writer at the very end of the Peak TV era, the challenges of TV criticism, and his return to writing about TV on his own terms via his Substack.

Previous Episodes

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    April 1, 2022
    254 The Spoon and the Tunnel

    “Counterpart” revisited, CNN+ as seen through the lens of an escaping prisoner, Apple TV+’s surprise success, the mess that is the current streaming landscape, and Tim shares a book idea with substack readers. Plus, letters from listeners!

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    February 18, 2022
    253 If Tim Falls in the Forest…

    “Station Eleven,” “The Afterparty,” Stephen Colbert, TV marriages, “The A Word,” and the moment when Tim’s partner said, “Yeah, I’m never gonna watch that.” Plus: your letters!

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    February 3, 2022
    252 The PBS Ping-Pong

    Tim finds “Utopia”—twice. Jason gets confused by “NCIS: Hawaii.” We ponder series hiding away on services like STARZ and EPIX. It’s Peacock’s time to shine (not just the Olympics, but “Vigil”!). PBS, please take my money. Tim bounces off of “Raised By Wolves.”

    And at the end of the episode The Box Set takes on episode one of “Station Eleven” and episode one of “Collateral.”

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    January 24, 2022
    251 Tim’s Back! On Substack!

    It’s been 612 pandemic-fueled days. But we’ve taken the tarp off the TV Talk Machine, replaced a few parts, and are ready to kick it into gear.

    Tim spent the last two years writing TV scripts! He’s going to keep doing that, and write a book, and also has launched a newsletter on Substack so he can write about television again. And… did we mention the TV Talk Machine is back, too? It’s true!

    In this episode Tim explains where he’s been, where he’s going, and the origin of his new project, which launches today! Also Jason raves about “Station Eleven” and believe it or not, there’s a letter from a listener!

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    May 22, 2020
    250 Nature is Healing

    Tim and Jason return to close the book on Volume 4 of the TV Talk Machine chronicles. (You can find the previous three volumes at We’ll be back in this feed, probably soon, with something that’s more of us talking about stuff, but a lot less about things that are TV related.

    But before we go, Tim describes the experience of having an opinion about a TV show and not sharing it. Jason goads him into some mild opinions. Jason mildly regrets an error, and recounts a bunch of shows he’s been watching on streaming. Then it’s time to check in on the Streaming Wars, including the impending launch of HBO Max, the mysteries of Peacock, and the question about what service is the mostly like to fail. We also read a few of your letters and about a million of your pandemic viewing suggestions, none of which appear in these show notes. On brand till the end.

    Finally, if you’d like to make suggestions for topics for us to talk about in the future, or just want to share your thoughts with a podcast, you can still tweet at us at @tvtm or email podcast at tvtalkmachine dot com. Bye everybody!

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    April 17, 2020
    249 We Don’t Rehearse This

    This week Tim has a new refrigerator and is watching comfort food like “Peaky Blinders.” Comcast stealth-launches Peacock. Bad things happen at Tim’s former employer. Jason watched “Home Before Dark” and “Devs.” And “What We Do In The Shadows” is back!

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    April 3, 2020
    248 Skunks Are Terrible Beings

    Tim just got home after several weeks away for complicated reasons. We’re back to fill your ears with talk about TV, music, life, and more. We hope it helps.

    We’ll read your letters and play your audio files if you send them in. Tweet at @tvtm or email podcast at tvtalkmachine dot com.

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    March 5, 2020
    247 I Love Being Confused

    This week your teacher has given you a break—we’re giving you another week to watch “What We Do In The Shadows.” Instead, we keep it tight and bright as Tim joins the rest of us in these Times of Confusion by not even realizing what TV shows are debuting. After some brief Death Cab For Cutie banter, we shift it into gear and discuss Actual TV News, including the return of “Better Things”, the premiere of “Devs” and an explanation of the whole “FX on Hulu” strategy, and the Hilary Duff problem at Disney+. Plus, your letters!

    [Want to have a letter read on the show? Email podcast at, or tweet @tvtm.]

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    February 26, 2020
    246 Genius Grant

    This podcast is like your friend who left a longtime job, got some new tattoos, and is showing a renewed interest in yoga. It’s a new life. Tim launched his new Resounding blog, which leads us to discuss why we love women singers. Speaking of learning and growing and pop music, Jason’s seen “High Fidelity” and does a real-estate check on “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist.” Then we put Netflix’s “Sex Education” in the spotlight (did you do the homework?)—and why it works on so many levels.

    Next episode’s assignment: “What We Do in the Shadows” on Hulu.

    Send us your letters/comments! Tweet at us at @tvtm or email us at podcast at!

  • TV Talk Machine cover art
    February 6, 2020
    245 Yoga Five Times a Week

    We’re back! Tim is retired, rested, and ready. And he’s got two new music-based projects to announce—neither of which is his secret job, sorry. Jason has some TV news and reports back on finishing a couple of series. We also read some of your letters and start a brand-new segment where Tim gives both Jason and the listeners a TV viewing assignment!

    Your assignment:Sex Education” season 1, episodes 1-4.

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