Bingeable MN: Buzzworthy Local Content

Entertainment and media to spend the whole afternoon and evening consuming, from local creators

What does it mean to be bingeable? It’s entertainment, media, or content you want to spend your entire free afternoon and evening consuming. You start listening to the podcast, reading the book, or scrolling the Insta page, and you just can’t stop. You want MORE…and NOW.

Minnesota boasts a number of bingeable creators. Here are some of our favorites right now:


"Northern Lights" podcast
“Northern Lights” podcast

Behind the Scenes

“Northern Lights” – Podcast

When the first episode of “Northern Lights” aired last June, the bill legalizing adult recreational use of cannabis in Minnesota had passed but hadn’t yet gone into effect. Fastforward to April 2024, and, for a special 4/20 episode, the podcast brought on makers of cannabis concentrates and glass artists and hosted a demonstration of dabbing—an act of consumption that would have been a felony one year prior.

There’s a lot to keep up with in Minnesota’s rapidly evolving cannabis market. So, with “Northern Lights,” a rotating cast of charismatic co-hosts—Tanner Berris, Marcus Harcus, John Bartee, Shana Payton, and Steve Eigenmann—give listeners an inside look at the state’s system, from seed to sale to consumption. “We’re one of the few states that’s going to have a medical track, a low-potency track, and an adult-use track all at the same time,” Berris says. “It’s sort of an experiment: Does cannabis have to be this thing that’s locked away at dispensaries, or is it something that, similar to alcohol, can find its way to restaurants, bars, movie theaters, wherever people choose to consume?”

Each episode begins with the latest in MN THC news. With so much happening in the space, from activity at the legislature to Jesse Ventura’s new edibles business, there’s no shortage of stuff to discuss. In fact, the Minnesota Cannabis College production has gone from publishing episodes every other week to publishing two a week.

Hosts sit down with interesting people in the region’s cannabis culture, including folks like Clemen Dabney, a plant wiz who produces THC-infused spices and syrups for home cooking, the group behind Native Care, the state’s first dispensary, and even Erin DuPree, the doomed “weed czar,” who shared her side of the story surrounding her one-day tenure.

For Minnesotans, it’s a fascinating and entertaining news source that goes deep into the emerging local industry. For listeners in the rest of the country, it’s an introduction to the innovative, surprising, and rapidly growing cannabis market in the North Star state. –Em Cassel

"Lessons on the Road to Peace"
“Lessons on the Road to Peace”

Broadleaf Books

John Noltner – Book

in the fall of 2020 to travel the world in search of positive stories and examples of hope. Photographer John Noltner and his wife, Karen, sold their Minnesota home a few miles from where George Floyd was killed in the fall of 2020 to travel the world in search of positive stories and examples of hope. The journey became the genesis of “Lessons on the Road to Peace,” a coffee-table compendium of essays, profiles, and engaging photography of inspiring people and efforts making genesis of “Lessons on the Road to Peace,” a coffee-table compendium of essays, profiles, and engaging photography of a difference. –Amy Nelson

Taylor Hage
Taylor Hage

Provided

Taylor Hage – Style Influencer

Taylor Hage is a Minneapolis-based fashion and lifestyle content creator who first rose to prominence on TikTok in 2020, when one of her “style tip” videos went viral. Hage now has a following of 1.6 million on the platform, where she posts daily outfit videos that replicate luxury fashion with a more approachable and accessible twist.

Hage also has a notable presence on Instagram, where she posts similar fashion and lifestyle content for an audience of nearly 400,000. Hage regularly attends runway shows at prominent events such as New York and Paris Fashion Week and has worked with brands including Dior and Balmain. Hage keeps her content fresh by approaching her styling tips from a variety of unique angles, whether it be “rainy day outfits,” “last minute holiday outfit ideas,” or “chic airport looks.” Hage also keeps a close pulse on Gen Z audiences by engaging with TikTok-popularized microtrends like “Mob Wife Aesthetic” and “Coastal Cowgirl.” Hage recently gave birth to her first child, which was preceded by months of online styling tips and recommendations for the various stages of pregnancy. –Emma Enebak

"Marmalade"
“Marmalade”

Screenshot

“Marmalade” – Movie

If you’ve been waiting two years to see what a certain “Stranger Things” star was filming in Minnesota, you’re in luck. “Marmalade,” a new romantic thriller starring Joe Keery and Camila Morrone, hit the big screen in February. The film follows a recently incarcerated man named Baron (Keery) as he recounts an epic heist and whirlwind love affair with his partner-in-crime, Marmalade (Morrone). It was shot entirely in Minnesota over the course of four weeks, so local viewers might recognize backdrops like the iconic Drive In Restaurant in Taylors Falls, a Newport pharmacy, an antique store in downtown Jordan, and other filming locations across Henderson, Stillwater, and Lake Elmo. The film doesn’t reveal where the story takes place, but Baron’s characteristic Southern drawl points far from the Midwest.

So why shoot in Minnesota? A new tax incentive is likely the answer. In 2021, the state legislature enacted a 25% income tax credit for production companies that spend at least $1 million on eligible production costs. The funds are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis until the credit cap is reached, which state legislators raised from $5 million to $25 million last year. “Marmalade” was one of the first projects to bite. After an exclusive theatrical run at Marcus Theatres across the state earlier this year, “Marmalade” is now available to rent on Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, and other streaming services. Throw on this fun, edge-of-your-seat thriller with a group of friends and see who can name the most Minnesota locations. –Macy Harder

Isabella Star LaBlanc
Isabella Star LaBlanc

“True Detective”

Isabella Star LaBlanc and John Hawkes in Season 4 of “True Detective” – TV Show

Season 4 of the popular series “True Detective” is set in Alaska, but Minnesotans play major roles as lead Jodie Foster’s bad cop foil (Hawkes, of Alexandria) and stepdaughter (LaBlanc, of St. Paul). Cold-blooded and creepy, the six-episode HBO show is subtitled “Night Country” and contains several connections to Season 1’s eight episodes, released a decade earlier. –Amy Nelson

Uranium Club
Uranium Club

Jack Cress

Uranium Club – Band

Uranium Club (sometimes called the Minneapolis Uranium Club Band) is commonly described as “eccentric,” maybe because the band eschews traditional efforts to get attention, such as having a web presence. Most people who write about music probably think that’s weird. Plus, band members wear matching jumpsuits when playing live. The music is eccentric, too, to the point of sometimes edging up to novelty.

The new album, “Infants Under the Bulb,” comes six years since the last one—and absolutely delivers. The vocals are mostly spoken, almost a combination of Dead Milkmen and Minneapolis’ own Lifter Puller. Musically, though, this is incredibly precise angular music, echoing NoMeansNo, early XTC, and, again, Lifter Puller.

Pitchfork called 2019’s “The Cosmo Cleaners” one of the 10 best “Punk and Garage Rock” albums, but this doesn’t fit neatly in either of those worlds. This is as riff-filled as any classic rock you can name; it just happens to be in service of absurd and original chaos with a bit of jitteriness. Tossed among those tracks is an oddly touching four-part spoken word story about a wall that suddenly appeared in a town. –Bill Childs

 

“Just Break Up: Relationship Advice from Your Queer Besties Sierra DeMulder and Sam Blackwell” – Podcast

Not every relationship is perfect—and not every observation is sound, but Minnesotans Sam Blackwell and Sierra DeMulder are the type of straight-talking, “ouch”-inducing advice allies who offer fresh ideas over heartache as they answer listeners’ “break up or make up?” questions. Neither is a licensed therapist but, well, ya know, close enough. –Amy Nelson

Patric Richardson
Patric Richardson

Photo by Darin Kamnetz

Patric Richardson – Books

St. Paul’s Patric Richardson, aka “The Laundry Evangelist,” first taught us to love doing laundry and respecting our threads through his laundry camps at his Mall of America store, Mona Williams, as well as his first book, “Laundry Love,” in 2021. The homespun charm of this Kentucky native continues in his latest book, “House Love: A Joyful Guide to Cleaning, Organizing, and Loving the Home You’re In,” chock full of housekeeping tips, eco-friendly hacks, and tidy tidbits. You’ll never look at a detergent pod or dryer sheet the same way again, and that’s a good thing. –Amy Nelson

 

“The MinnMax Show” – Podcast

This one’s for the gamers. Former employees of Game Informer, the Minneapolis-based video game media outlet, started a podcast in 2019 to review new games, track anticipated releases, and goof around—maybe airing sheepish “gaming confessions,” for instance, such as how one of them has forked over more than $200 on in-game transactions, or how another thinks Yoshitaka Amano’s iconic “Final Fantasy” concept art looks “dumb.” The conversation flows easily on this nearly 5-star-rated show. If you want to know what’s exciting in gaming now, this is how to stay local and informed. –Erik Tormoen

Daisy Kent on "The Bachelor"
Daisy Kent on “The Bachelor”

Disney/John Fleenor

Daisy Kent on “The Bachelor” – TV Show

It sounds like a Hallmark Channel movie: A young girl grows up happy and healthy on her family’s Minnesota Christmas tree farm, suffers a debilitating health setback, conquers the health issue with the help of technology, and sets out to find love. Trade Hallmark for the white-hot reality dating show “The Bachelor,” and you have the latest must-see TV.

Daisy Kent grew up in Becker, Minnesota, and was often ill during her childhood before being diagnosed with Ménière’s disease, leading to significant hearing loss, and later with Lyme disease at age 21. She received cochlear implants in March 2023 and authored a children’s book, “Daisy Doo: All the Sounds She Knew,” in August 2023. Her perseverance made her a fan favorite—and one of two finalists—on Season 28 of “The Bachelor,” which finished airing in late March. “Daisy’s the strongest woman I’ve ever met,” bachelor and tennis star Joey Graziadei said during the filming.

When Kent sensed Graziadei was not going to select her for the final rose, she graciously said goodbye on her own terms. Instead of starring as the next “The Bachelorette,” she chose to focus on her health. Another Minnesotan, Leslie Fhima, also finished second on a different Bachelor Nation franchise, “The Golden Bachelor,” earlier this year. Both are bingeable as streams on Hulu and perfect for getting a group together to shout “Go, girl!” in a number of scenes. –Amy Nelson

"Time Capsule: The Silver Chain"
“Time Capsule: The Silver Chain”

Provided

“Time Capsule: The Silver Chain” – Podcast

Swingers in the Twin Cities, you say? We’re in. “Time Capsule: The Silver Chain” is a new podcast from Minnesota TV writer and host Paul Ditty and producer Nora McInerny. A GQ story in 2017 broke the news of a Minnesota-based swingers group in the 1970s and ’80s named the Silver Chain (for a piece of jewelry meant to identify members to one another). This “scandal” podcast is a more in-depth examination of the social club of more than 100 partner-swapping couples. “The podcast delves into the complexities of the Silver Chain, revealing both its community-oriented facade and its darker realities,” the description explains.

McInerny may be familiar from her first book, “It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too),” about her Minnesota marriage and the loss of her first husband to a brain tumor. She also hosts the popular “Terrible, Thanks for Asking” podcast. The eight-episode podcast launched on Apple Podcasts and Spotify in February. –Amy Nelson

 

"A Good Family"
“A Good Family”

Forge Books

Matt Goldman – Books

Author Matt Goldman grew up in Minnesota, forged a TV writing career in L.A. (boasting “Seinfeld” and “Ellen” credits), and has since fired up a murder mystery book series set in his home state. Now a Minneapolis resident, Goldman has penned six titles so far. His first, 2018’s “Gone to Dust,” introduces a recurring, Poirot-like figure: the merciless Nils Shapiro, who relishes every opportunity to lance Twin Cities locales with snide comments and fond overfamiliarity. The mysteries are great brain food. The characters are likable. The writing is re-readable, and the Minnesota references are plentiful—satisfying to catch in the same way, I’m sure, New Yorkers sigh and squeal at the endless volumes of media set in their city. Goldman’s latest, “A Good Family,” came out a year ago, so we expect an imminent return. –Erik Tormoen

Vial
Vial

Photo by Madeline Elli

VIAL – Band

VIAL’s story—the band formed in Minnesota on Tinder and blew up on TikTok during the height of the pandemic—has the potential to signal flash-in-the-pan status. The debut full-length album (2021’s “Loudmouth”) has bigger things in mind.

Smart, aggressive, sometimes hilarious, and always honest, it feels like a guided tour to what it means to be women and nonbinary and young and punk in the very weird time that is the 2020s. It also includes one objectively perfect song that you might be certain you heard on alt-rock radio in, like, 1991 (“Something More”). The years since have brought various singles—including a fascinating cover of Nirvana’s “Territorial Pissings” and an accompanying “PissFest” release party at the 7th Street Entry in Minneapolis—and a ton of blistering live shows, along with a shift from quartet to trio.

This spring brought their release on Get Better Records, the all-lowercase “burnout,” which gets in and out at an economical 19 minutes. It picks up where “Loudmouth” left off, pairing angst and rage with joy, absurdly catchy songs, and, again, LOLs. Consider “ur dad” and “broth song,” the sweetest love song to soup there is—unless that’s a euphemism. VIAL has a busy batch of dates coming up, including the massive Punk Rock Bowling 2024 show in Las Vegas, sharing the stage with everyone from Billy Bragg to Madness to Gogol Bordello—and, hopefully, some hometown dates.

But is VIAL truly Minnesotan? The opening line from “Bottle Blonde” says so: “My skin feels like it’s going to fall off/So dry outside in the wintertime.” –Bill Childs

 

“The Boy Lynx” – Podcast

This breezy, entertaining podcast bills itself as “the only women-hosted conversation happening around the Minnesota Timberwolves.” Anna Knutson and Anji Nyquist bond while discussing ins and outs of the season, the NBA as a whole, and their lives. Occasionally a guest shows up, such as Timberwolves and Lynx in-arena host Jon Berry and WNBA player Bria Hartley. They hit on hot topics, viral moments, and floated theories. Has Karl-Anthony Towns become a “Robin,” versus a “Batman,” or was that one onlooker’s uninformed take? Do you agree the Glen Taylor era needs to end? Who’s a champ, and who’s a chump? Their rapport makes it feel like catching up with friends. –Erik Tormoen

 

“The Object” – Podcast

Wandering the Minneapolis Institute of Art, it occasionally feels as though you could zero in on one piece, or plant yourself in one room, and spend most the day there. That’s essentially the premise of “The Object.” What’s the story behind Mia’s enchantingly executed veiled marble statue? Who is the man sometimes known as the country’s first Black professional artist? And how did Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera’s arrival to the United States go, using Mia’s collected works as a guide? Hosted by Tim Gihring, a writer, producer, and former editor-in-chief of Minnesota Monthly, the podcast commits to immersive audio journalism, and that focus on storytelling demands its own attention. –Erik Tormoen

Em Cassel is a journalist based in Minneapolis. You can follow her on Twitter (@biketrouble) and find more of her work at emcassel.com.
As editor of Minnesota Monthly, Amy works collaboratively with a team of writers, designers, photographers, and digital producers to create impactful, surprising, timely and insightful content that reflects the Spirit of Minnesota. An award-winning newspaper and magazine editor based in the Twin Cities, Amy has decades of experience guiding coverage of luxury living, arts and culture, style and travel topics across multiple platforms. She has interviewed personalities ranging from Prince to Roger Goodell and has stories to tell.
As an Associate Editor on Greenspring Media's Custom team, Emma contributes to multiple publications, including Real Food and Drinks, Twin Cities Living, and Minnesota Monthly. A true Minnesotan, Emma spent most of her life in an ice rink, training as an elite figure skater. When she is not writing or skating, you can find her at a yoga class, thrifting, drinking overpriced coffee, or spending the day on the lake.
Erik Tormoen is Managing Editor of Minnesota Monthly. He studied journalism at Northwestern University. etormoen@greenspring.com