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‘There is no substitute’: Tom Cruise’s impossible missions

 Tom Cruise in ‘Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One.’
Tom Cruise in ‘Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part One.’

It’s been more than a decade since Tom Cruise made a movie that did NOT make $100 million. The newest Mission: Impossible just opened at $235 million.

And yet. Didn’t we all decide not to like Tom Cruise anymore a long time ago?

This hour — in the fifth decade of his career, in the seventh (!) decade of his life, nearly two decades after Oprah’s couch — a look at the continued phenomenon that is Tom Cruise.


  • Jim Chapdelaine: An Emmy-winning musician and a patient advocate for people with rare cancers
  • Taneisha Duggan: Associate producer at Octopus Theatricals
  • James Hanley: Co-founder of Cinestudio at Trinity College
  • Sam Hatch: Co-hosts The Culture Dogs on Sunday nights on WWUH
  • Rich Hollant: Principal at CO:LAB, founder of Free Center, and commissioner on cultural affairs for the city of Hartford
  • Jacques Lamarre: A playwright and chief communications officer at Buzz Engine
  • Ben Lindbergh: Senior editor at The Ringer
  • Stephanie Merry: Book World editor for The Washington Post
  • Bob Mondello: NPR’s senior arts critic
  • Carolyn Paine: An actress, comedian, and dancer; she is founder, director, and choreographer of CONNetic Dance
  • Julia Rosenblatt: A playwright, director, actor, theater educator, and co-founder of HartBeat Ensemble
  • Brian Slattery: Arts editor for the New Haven Independent
  • Pedro Soto: President and CEO of Hygrade Precision Technologies

The Colin McEnroe Show is available as a podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, TuneIn, Listen Notes, or wherever you get your podcasts. Subscribe and never miss an episode!

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Colin McEnroe, Eugene Amatruda, Cat Pastor, Catie Talarski, and Chion Wolf contributed to this show, parts of which originally aired April 27, 2017; August 3, 2018; March 6, 2019; January 15, 2021; August 26, 2022; and September 30, 2022, in a different form.

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Jonathan is a producer for ‘The Colin McEnroe Show.’ His work has been heard nationally on NPR and locally on Connecticut Public’s talk shows and news magazines. He’s as likely to host a podcast on minor league baseball as he is to cover a presidential debate almost by accident. Jonathan can be reached at jmcnicol@ctpublic.org.