How To Be Amazing with Michael Ian Black

How To Be Amazing with Michael Ian Black

United States

Your handy-dandy guidebook for that thing you do, only better.


#42 Daniel Kahneman  

When Michael spoke to Five Thirty Eight's founder Nate Silver, he highly recommended Daniel Kahneman's groundbreaking book Thinking Fast and Slow. Now, Michael talks to Kahneman, the Nobel Prize-winning author and founder of behavioral economics, in a rare interview.

#41 Sonia Manzano  

Michael talks with Sonia Manzano on the heels of her recent Lifetime Achievement Emmy. Manzano is best known as “Maria” on Sesame Street, a character she helped create and played for 44 years on the groundbreaking television show.

#40 Penn Jillette  

Legendary magician and raconteur Penn Jillette has a keen eye for calling out the bullshit around him, but it took a dangerous health scare for him to realize his own eating habits were going to kill him if he didn't change.

#39 Harlan Coben  

The best-selling thriller master talks craft with Michael. A not-to-miss episode for anyone who aspires to write or just wants to know how a big bestseller is put together.

#38 Tim Gunn  

In this deeply personal and heartfelt conversation the fashion therapist and Project Runway mentor, Tim Gunn, opens up about his struggles with learning to be comfortable in his own skin and using his talent, creativity and passion for the arts to inspire others.

#37 Valerie Plame  

As a spy, Valerie Plame’s job was for nobody to know her identity. All that changed when members of George W. Bush’s administration outed her and ruined her life. Her experience from 2003 is disturbingly relevant to events happening today.

#36 Michael Showalter  

Michael sits down with his friend and fellow member of the comedy troupes The State and Stella for a lively, hilarious and moving conversation about finding your voice in the entertainment industry.

#35 Wayne Pacelle  

From protesting turkey at Thanksgiving, to making a career helping animals, the President and CEO of the Humane Society talks to Michael about how he attacks the huge problems facing animals today.

#34 Lauren Mayberry  

The lead singer, co-producer and co-writer of the Scottish pop band Chvrches talks to Michael about her journey from being a law school student and journalist in Glasgow to performing in front of thousands of people.

#33 Dan Savage  

Dan Savage's authentic openness and empathy informed from growing up a closeted gay in a Catholic family that might not fully accept him made him realize that nobody should be dismissed because of their sexuality or sexual preferences. No wonder he's America's leading sex advice columnist.

#32 Memorial Day Special: Bryan Doerries  

Bryan Doerries has become responsible for one of the biggest collaborations in history between the U.S. Military and the arts world using greek tragedies to start conversations and a process of healing in communities that are dealing with some of the darkest things that humans have to deal with--- war trauma, imprisonment, and addiction.

#31 Krista Tippett  

Krista Tippett has devoted her professional life to asking the big questions on her show, On Being. Questions about faith and science and love and how we should live our lives are posed in such an engaging, thought-provoking way that it's no wonder she has amassed a huge following on both public radio and through her popular podcast.

#30 Max Brooks  

When you grow up the only child of two very famous parents, most people don’t expect much from you, but Max Brooks wanted to prove to himself that he was more than just “Mel Brook’s kid” so he became the bestselling author of "The Zombie Survival Guide" and "World War Z."

#29 Suzy Favor-Hamilton  

Suzy Favor-Hamilton went from being a three-time Olympian to a high class escort in Vegas. She tells her story, and how she got control, in this episode.

#28 Jim Gaffigan  

It took Jim Gaffigan years to find his own comedic point of view, but today he's one of the most popular comedians working.

#27 Audra McDonald  

Michael talks to the six-time Tony Award-winning actress Audra McDonald about failed auditions, letting go of her idea of perfection, and how she learned to embraces new challenges.

#26 Chuck Klosterman  

In this episode Klosterman discusses his rise from small town boy to finding his place as one of America’s best loved cultural critics.

#25 John Leguizamo  

John Leguizamo tells Michael how a Latin boy from Queens was able to carve out his own career in what he calls “Hollywon’t.”

#24 Naomi Klein  

The best selling author and speaker makes the big subjects like global warming and unfettered capitalism understandable and simple and even offers us a ray of hope in the face of a seemingly dire future.

#23 Dan Harris  

After years of covering wars oversee, it was reading the news on Good Morning America that nearly did in newsman Dan Harris after he suffered a major panic attack live, on-air. His search for serenity is the perfect guide for the skeptics among us.

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