Ask Me Another

Sundays, 11 a.m.

NPR's Ask Me Another is a lively hour of puzzles, word games, and trivia played in front of (and with) a live audience. Ask Me Another's entertaining melange of brainteasers and fun is a descendant of Weekend Edition Sunday's Puzzle Segment with Will Shortz, but infused with the vibrancy and quick wit of Wait, Wait...Don't Tell Me

Listeners can play along, testing their knowledge of history, geography, literature, grammar, spelling, pop culture and even mathematics along with the competitors called up to the stage. 

Yes, we do math on the radio. But it's our distinct brand. Try this on your loved ones: Total number of Brontë Sisters, plus total number of Marx Brothers? Or how about the total of Dalmatians, plus all those Luftballoons, divided by Ali Baba's thieves? 

Ask Me Another host, noted comedian and storyteller Ophira Eisenberg, guides listeners with her witty banter aided by the comedic riffs and songs of house musician Jonathan Coulton. Each episode features an interview with a VIP (that's Very Important Puzzlers -- noteable actors, comedians, and authors whose identities are revealed via puzzle clues throughout the show), who then takes a turn in the contestant's chair facing trivia games written especially for him or her. 

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Ask Me Another
9:53 am
Thu July 17, 2014

Really Hard Edition 2: Part 3

In the final segment, we pull out all the stops for a Very Important Puzzler and some special musical guests. In "Accidental Science," we challenge Radiolab host in the puzzle hot seat for a quiz about unintentional scientific discoveries. Then, They Might Be Giants devise a game literally filled with trick questions, appropriately titled, "Wrong, Wrong, Wrong."

Ask Me Another
9:52 am
Thu July 17, 2014

Really Hard Edition 2: Part 2

Host Ophira Eisenberg and puzzle editor Art Chung continue the hour with a trio of games that push the limits on your ability to recall cultural references. In "Nick Names," identify famous people and fictional characters named "Nick." (See what we did there?) Sing along with house musician Jonathan Coulton in "Jingle All The Way," as he performs favorite commercial jingles...in Italian. Plus, insert comic strip characters into your favorite novels in "Literary Comic Strips."

Ask Me Another
9:49 am
Thu July 17, 2014

Really Hard Edition 2: Part 1

In this hour, take on some of our trickiest games in recent memory with host Ophira Eisenberg and puzzle editor Art Chung. Do your best to remember two things at once in "International Doppelgangers" as puzzle guru John Chaneski asks you to combine celebrities with the names of countries, like that South American star, Argentina Fey. Then, try a twist on the mash-up in "Russian Dolls" by "nesting," or placing words inside a different one to make a longer word — putting a LAMB inside of a CAKE creates a CLAMBAKE.

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Ask Me Another
9:07 am
Thu July 10, 2014

The Body Eclectic

Make no bones about it, this final round is body-licious! The answer to every clue contains the name of a body part. Who will prove themselves head and shoulders above the rest?

Heard in Episode 321: Live. Puzzle. Repeat

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Ask Me Another
9:07 am
Thu July 10, 2014

Doug Liman: Action Speaks Louder

Doug Liman.
Dimitrios Kambouris Getty Images

Since his earliest films, director Doug Liman has been a rule breaker. He shot Swingers in increasing order of what scenes were most likely to get him arrested. When he made The Bourne Identity and Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Liman treated the multi-million dollar productions like a film school, figuring out every last detail out on the fly.

And in his latest film, Edge of Tomorrow, Liman stays true to that belief, as he cast Tom Cruise in a role he's never taken on before: an inept, cowardly soldier.

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Ask Me Another
9:07 am
Thu July 10, 2014

The Soundgarden Of Music

We mashed up popular musicians with the names of Broadway shows to create a can't-miss theatre lineup. Look out for the show about a rap artist who meets a girl named Maria: Kanye West Side Story.

Heard in Episode 321: Live. Puzzle. Repeat

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Ask Me Another
10:31 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Abumrad And Krulwich: Lab Partners Forever

Jad and Robert: the Jay-Z and Beyoncé of public radio.
Steve McFarland

Originally published on Fri July 18, 2014 12:28 pm

  • Jad and Robert on their first impressions and a never-ending argument

Although the on-air chemistry between Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich, hosts of WNYC's Radiolab, is a big reason for their show's success, their initial collaborations were not so smooth. They first met when Krulwich ripped up Abumrad's script for a fundraising promo and then proceeded to improvise a new one — somehow mentioning aliens in the process. The pair soon began to meet for weekly breakfasts to chat about science and other worldly matters, and from that the beginnings of Radiolab emerged.

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Ask Me Another
10:28 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Just Sit Right Back

They Might Be Giants and Jonathan Coulton believe that modern-day dramas need some theme song love, too.
Steve McFarland

Originally published on Fri July 18, 2014 12:30 pm

It used to be that a TV theme song told an entire show's premise. Lately, all you get is a wordless ditty. In this game, we've rewritten the lyrics to classic TV tunes to be about modern-day dramas.

Plus, They Might Be Giants perform a new song, "Hate The Villanelle," live at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

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Ask Me Another
10:24 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Rule of Three

Contestants Micaela Blei and Krissa Corbett Cavouras share a hug after a thrilling final round game.
Steve McFarland

It's said that all good things come in threes — which is why this final round is all about three-word groupings that always go together. Go! Fight! Win! Three cheers for this week's champion.

Heard in Episode 320: We Might Be Giant Nerds

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Ask Me Another
8:05 am
Thu June 12, 2014

I Sense A Theme Music

Originally published on Thu June 12, 2014 10:31 am

Who could forget Celine Dion's Titanic's love anthem, "My Heart Will Go On"? We wish we could. In this game, identify movies from their famous soundtrack moments.

Heard in Episode 319: Two Can Slay That Game

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