It is typically frowned upon today to spend too much time stressing over pop culture drama and gossip, especially for women. As a woman obsessed with pop culture, I have been told not to care about the goings-on with various celebrities, watch so much television that I can quote full seasons of shows or constantly be keeping up with the latest trends on social media.
While I agree that those pastimes should be just that, pastimes, I don’t understand why there is a weird stigma around enjoying pop culture. Women in media are typically demonized for engaging in drama or gossip, and it is about time this stereotype is broken down and turned into a positive force. That is where “Be There in Five” comes in.
“Be There in Five” is a longform, pop culture commentary podcast hosted by Kate Kennedy. Kennedy is a Chicago-based entrepreneur who got her start through selling doormats with reminders on them such as “turn off your curling iron,” which she cleverly calls “Remindoormats.” Her business, also called Be There in Five, took off which led her to start her podcast.
“Be There in Five,” while aimed at women in their late 20s and 30s, is honestly a great listen for anyone interested in pop culture. Kennedy deep dives into topics from light-hearted commentary on 90s culture to complex women’s issues in society today. She uses the subject of pop culture to engage with women about their own situations and provide her perspective, and often advice as well.
In Kennedy’s most recent deep dive into Rachel Hollis and her “Self Help” empire, she elevates the voices of women who had been roped into Hollis’ manipulative web and she gave these women a platform to share their experience in the hopes that others will learn from their stories. For women listening who may have similar experiences, it is incredibly empowering to know you are not alone.
Even in more lighthearted or less researched episodes, Kennedy provides excellent commentary on various situations and gives real life application to her listeners. In her episode immediately following Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Oprah interview, while purely a reactionary episode, Kennedy explained how Meghan is a prime example of how women are treated in regards to mental health as well as how women of color are treated in societies today.
I initially listened to that episode for the drama, but it made me reflect on my own life and how I act around my friends and family who may be dealing with similar situations. These kinds of deep dives will pull you in for the gossip and make you stay for the miniature therapy session courtesy of Kennedy and her insights.
As someone 10 years younger than Kennedy, I find her podcast as a source of advice for my own life. Kennedy talks very passionately about her own past experiences and gives advice to her listeners which is helpful to someone, like me, who is at the start of adulthood. Hearing her experiences with family, friends, corporate jobs and life as an entrepreneur can aid women like me in ways to navigate their own adulthood experiences as they begin to enter the world of working and life after college.
While not explicitly an advice podcast, Kennedy’s various tangents throughout episodes do in fact give a perspective that is incredibly insightful, especially for listeners who are younger than the target audience. On the other hand, this pop culture podcast is a great release from a busy week and a place to unwind and indulge yourself with some fun gossip.
Kennedy takes a unique approach to her podcast. Her tone and style are very conversational and gives the impression that you are just talking with a friend about the latest drama. Her longform format allows her to expand in great detail about her various topics, but also leaves room for her to go off on tangents that definitely give the podcast a much more relaxed and informal energy while still being professional and informative.
The two hour episodes and series within the show are perfect for long commutes to work or school, and will always leave you thinking about deeper messages underneath the fun pop culture commentary. Not only is this podcast a place to relax and enjoy yourself, but also a place to open your mind and learn from someone’s genuine experiences. If you like to think, gossip and explore pop culture, “Be There in Five” needs to be your next podcast.