The Last We Fake

S3 E9 - The Celebrity by Catherine Hein: Episode 9, Hotch's Hideaway

February 02, 2024 Alan Rifkin Season 3 Episode 9
The Last We Fake
S3 E9 - The Celebrity by Catherine Hein: Episode 9, Hotch's Hideaway
Show Notes

Somehow surviving an equestrian gauntlet of obstacles capped by an AWOL 14-year-old Wally Cleaver (“Will you go out with me when I get my license?”), Wanda has finally managed to dial out and hear the terrifying news about her grandmother. But her stage presence is nearly shot when the rotund, legendary fright maestro who directed The Crows and 57 Stairs finds her sitting in his office chair.

In what one listener describes as "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" if it were written by a woman, Catherine Hein's historical novel traces the journey of Wanda Fleming, the tenacious, calamity-prone co-host fatale of TV's Daytalk who, in the spring of 1962, must face life without her closest ally, settle on one lover, conquer her eating disorder, and ace a round of Password in order to secure a coveted game-show gig. . . if the world doesn't change too much first.

Hein's former life took her from 20 years in the entertainment industry to two years in a homeless women's shelter. That's where Wanda, the reigning spirit of this epic two-volume novel of early ‘60s Hollywood, was born.

Hein's other writing credits include The Bob Newhart Show and a children's story series in The Los Angeles Times about a traveling circus in occupied France.  She now holds a master’s degree in English and an MFA in Fiction from California State University, Long Beach.

Host Alan Rifkin's novels, essays and short stories of Los Angeles have been published widely. Learn more about him at

Intro music is from the song "Slow," performed by Sally Dworsky. Written by Sally Dworsky and Chris Hickey. Available on iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music and all other streaming platforms.

Closing credit music for Season 3 is performed by Ben Rifkin.

Podcast art by Ryan Longnecker.