This American Life

Watch This American Life

  • TV-14
  • 2007
  • 2 Seasons
  • 8.4  (626)

This American Life is a show hosted by Ira Glass, which showcases various stories about different people from all walks of life, offering a meaningful and entertaining look into human experience. The show's format takes the listeners along a journey of stories, which range from profound to funny, and everything in between.

Each week, the show is divided into two or three different acts, with each act delving deeper into a particular theme. These themes can be something as specific as an individual's personal struggle or as expansive as the American experience. Throughout the show's run, it has covered everything from prison reform to the 2008 financial crisis to the lives of artists and musicians.

One of the standout features of This American Life is its use of sound design. The show's producers use sound to create a vivid, immersive experience for the listener. This can include background music, sound effects, and even reenactments of dialogue that add an extra layer of depth to the stories. The show's unique use of sound has helped to redefine the audio storytelling genre, and has paved the way for a new generation of podcasts and radio programs.

Another aspect of the show that makes it so successful is its inclusivity. This American Life is a show that truly welcomes everyone, no matter their background or beliefs. The stories told on the show are diverse, and cover a broad range of topics that are relevant to people from different walks of life. Listeners are encouraged to explore and discover new perspectives, and to gain a deeper understanding of the world around them.

Throughout the show's run, This American Life has featured a wide range of guests, including writers, academics, journalists, and everyday people with interesting stories to tell. These guests are brought on to give an expert perspective on a particular theme, or to share their own first-hand experiences. Featured guests have included David Sedaris, Sarah Vowell, and John Hodgman, among others.

In addition to the weekly radio show, This American Life also produces live shows and TV specials. These shows feature a blend of storytelling, comedy, and music, and have been performed in venues across the country. The TV specials, which air on Showtime, are recorded versions of live performances that have been adapted for the screen. These specials offer a unique take on the radio show's format, and have proven to be immensely popular with audiences.

Overall, This American Life is a show that offers a uniquely American perspective on life. It is a show that celebrates diversity, and offers a platform to voices that are often ignored or overlooked. Through its use of sound, its commitment to inclusivity, and its dedication to telling meaningful and entertaining stories, This American Life has become an important part of the American media landscape.

This American Life is a series that is currently running and has 2 seasons (13 episodes). The series first aired on March 22, 2007.

This American Life
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No Respect
7. No Respect
May 29, 2010
A bonus second-season edition comprised of material produced for the This American Life web site, a look at comedians and their audiences includes segments about unknown comics performing for a rowdy crowd at a club in the middle of nowhere, and a piece about Mike Birbiglia, a standup with a scathing routine about his worst gig ever.
John Smith
6. John Smith
June 8, 2008
A look at the large number of people named John Smith, including an 11-week old baby who was supposed to be a boy, and a 23 year old man in Wyoming who is in trouble with the law. Lastly, a 46 year old who is awaiting the return of his son from the war in Iraq.
Every Marriage is a Courtroom
5. Every Marriage is a Courtroom
June 1, 2008
Comic book artist Chris Ware animates a true story that reveals how all marriages, good or bad, are in essence courtrooms. Ware's animation brings to life the tragic tale of one couple's failed attempt at matrimony.
4. Underdogs
May 25, 2008
A focus on two different boxers from Tennessee who battle each other in a match which means a lot to both men. Also, a group of New York youths learn how to challenge their bullies by using humor instead of fists.
Going Down In History
3. Going Down In History
May 18, 2008
A common medicine cabinet item was used in the escape attempt of two Wisconsin convicts. Plus, a man's with a 30-year obsession with a flying critter. Also, a high school yearbook photo hides the tragedy and drama withing the kids young lives.
Two Wars
2. Two Wars
May 11, 2008
A young Iraqi man takes questions from American citizens about his homeland. A Rhode Island man from Bulgaria discusses a long time argument he has had with his American wife.
1. Escape
May 4, 2008
In Philadelphia, young boys use a mode of transportation which has been obsolete since the 19th century to impress girls and break free of the confines of their home. Also, specialized circumstances makes a young man's breakaway for independence and from his mother a bit tougher.
Where to Watch This American Life
This American Life is available for streaming on the Showtime website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch This American Life on demand at Showtime, Paramount+, Amazon Prime, Amazon, Vudu, FuboTV, Microsoft Movies & TV, Sling, Google Play, Apple TV and Showtime Anytime.
  • Premiere Date
    March 22, 2007
  • IMDB Rating
    8.4  (626)