A Profound Effort
Vladimir Nabokov's 1955 novel Lolita is the story of a conniving, narcissistic, middle-aged child rapist & murderer (Humbert Humbert) and his efforts to convince the book's readers that his abduction and sexual/emotional violence against a 12 year old girl (Dolores Haze) over the course of a year is one of the greatest & purest love stories ever told.
Jamie Loftus' Lolita Podcast is an epic & compelling deep dive into how and why Humbert's mission to elevate his perversion into the very model of passion has been resoundingly successful in the global pop cultural imagination over the past 65 years.
The 10-part podcast series is staggering in scope, intensively researched, eye-opening, infuriating, and a must-listen. I don't think it's hyperbolic to say that this is one of the most ambitious and successful podcast projects ever launched.
From Nabokov's life and work, to the sexual atmosphere of the era, to the book's reception, the endless run of misguided/troubled adaptations across various media, the tribulations of the various women playing Dolores in those adaptions, the movies' effect on fashion and the cultural understanding of teen sexuality, and our country's abject and continuing failure of sexual abuse victims the series is relentless in its quest to investigate and understand how the book and its central character have been understood, misunderstood, and re-invented over the past several decades.
Chock-full of interviews, excerpts, analysis, and commentary this is an undeniable expression of its creator's talent and vision, a work of art (and entertainment) that is as vital as it is engaging.
I am very happy to have known Jamie during her time on on the comedy scene in Boston and if you're a WesRecs OG you'll remember that I included her previous awesome podcast My Year in Mensa way back in WesRecs 12 and her hilarious (and justified) efforts to have a Zamboni (aka "Ice Resurfacer") enshrined in the emoji Pantheon in WesRecs 45. She has a singular voice, a bottomless talent, and she brings an undeniable commitment and passion to all of her projects and her latest one is not something you should miss.