Cristin Milioti and Camila Mendes (Palm Springs) compete to see who can identify holidays based on the text of Hallmark cards.
OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:
Our next two contestants include one returning champion and one soon-to-be champion. First, star of stage and screen Cristin Milioti is back. And with her, from TV's "Riverdale" - I mean, Veronica Lodge herself - Camila Mendes. And together, they star in the romantic comedy "Palm Springs," which broke records at the Sundance Film Festival and is streaming right now on Hulu. Cristin, Camila, hello.
CAMILA MENDES: Hello.
CRISTIN MILIOTI: Hello.
EISENBERG: Welcome and welcome back.
MILIOTI: Thank you.
EISENBERG: Cristin, when you were on the show way back when, in 2012, you were the star of "Once"...
MILIOTI: Yeah, I know.
EISENBERG: ...On Broadway at the time. Yeah.
EISENBERG: I don't know how long ago that feels to you.
MILIOTI: So it feels both 20 years ago and six months ago...
EISENBERG: Yeah (laughter).
MILIOTI: ...At the same time is how it feels. Like, where I'm like, oh, yeah. God. I'm still tired from that. When was that?
MILIOTI: Oh, my God. It was eight years ago. I was like - it's like...
MILIOTI: Oh, my God...
MENDES: By the way...
MILIOTI: ...I'm just a tired person.
MENDES: By the way, I saw her on Broadway when I was on a field trip in high school.
MENDES: We went to go see "Once." And she was - yeah. So it's super crazy that we're working together now.
MILIOTI: It is. Yeah. And now we're playing sisters.
MENDES: Yeah, look at that.
EISENBERG: And so Cristin, last time you were on, we gave you a quiz that was about famous people from New Jersey.
MILIOTI: Right. And I remember I cursed a lot during it...
MILIOTI: ...And then was told numerous times throughout that I wasn't allowed to curse because it was NPR. But then I was getting so nervous and so upset by the game because I couldn't, like - my brain wasn't working fast.
MILIOTI: Then I just kept cursing. Yeah.
EISENBERG: Natural response, I would say. I would say it's a natural response.
MILIOTI: Yeah. Yeah.
EISENBERG: So we have a couple games for you. Should we try your next challenge for the both of you?
MENDES: I can't wait.
EISENBERG: Very good. We'll start with a fun frolic. Do either of you ever send - are you a card person? Like, do you like giving a card, receiving a card or are you...
MENDES: Oh, I thought you were going to talk about, like, card games. I was like, love card games. Which one?
EISENBERG: Oh, yeah. No. No, like greeting cards.
MENDES: No, I love receiving a card. I think it's so sweet. I definitely cherish, like, the good ones, for sure. And I store all the ones that I'm like, wow, this one, like, really made me cry.
MENDES: This one's super special. Like, I'll put this one away. And I still have them from, like, ex-boyfriends and ex - you know, like, old friends or my mom's card when I was, like, you know, 12 years old. Things like that...
MENDES: ...I think, are so special to keep.
JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: I have a friend who, occasionally, after having had him over for dinner, he will write a handwritten thank-you note.
MILIOTI: Oh, that's so sweet.
MILIOTI: I have a friend like that, too. Yeah.
COULTON: And it's always like, holy moly (laughter).
MENDES: I've always admired people like that. Yeah.
COULTON: Yeah. No. It's amazing. It's like the - (laughter) because, I mean, what did it take him, 60 seconds to do?
COULTON: But it's still - just the act of it is such a bold, startling gesture. It's kind of...
MENDES: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
EISENBERG: Do you then respond to them to let them know that you were thankful for receiving their card?
COULTON: I sent him a text. It says...
COULTON: ...Got your card, thx. No, I didn't...
COULTON: I'm just kidding. I'm just kidding.
MENDES: Thx? Cold.
MILIOTI: Xoxo, gossip girl.
MENDES: Are we about to plug, like, a card company? Like, what's going on here?
EISENBERG: Yeah. This is...
MILIOTI: Yeah, exactly.
COULTON: Yeah. That's right.
EISENBERG: ...We're just trying to get one sponsor. OK, Camila?
EISENBERG: We're just trying to get one sponsor during this time.
MENDES: Times are tough.
EISENBERG: We have a game called Hallmark Holidays.
EISENBERG: So we found that there are some real hallmark cards out there that are for very specific occasions or recipients. So we are going to throw those out to you, what the card says. And you're just going to tell us what the specific occasion or recipient is.
MENDES: OK. Great.
MILIOTI: Oh, wow.
EISENBERG: Cristin, this one's for you. Becoming an adult takes a lot of hard work and one huge party. Live it up.
MILIOTI: Graduation party?
MILIOTI: Bat mitzvah?
MILIOTI: Yeah. OK.
COULTON: Yes, bar - bat mitzvah.
MENDES: Wow. Those are so very different.
MILIOTI: I know.
MENDES: I told my dad once I wanted one, and then he was like, that - you're not Jewish (laughter). I was like, well, can I have one anyway?
MILIOTI: I did the same thing. I was like, can I have one? And they were like, no.
COULTON: We don't have to do it.
EISENBERG: Yeah. My parents - I am Jewish, and my parents were very traditional. And I was like, I want one. They're like, no, it's just for boys.
MENDES: Whoa, not fair.
MENDES: Did you ever throw yourself one?
EISENBERG: No. I just became a woman silently.
MENDES: As one does.
COULTON: Just on your own time.
EISENBERG: That's right.
COULTON: OK. Camila, here is the next one.
MENDES: All right.
COULTON: The front of this card is a drawing of a cat wearing sunglasses in a hammock.
MENDES: Got it.
COULTON: And inside, it says, welcome to the seven-day weekend.
MENDES: To the seven-day weekend?
COULTON: Yeah. If you were our age, it would be on your mind a lot.
COULTON: Retirement is correct.
EISENBERG: All right. Cristin, one summer warmer, one autumn richer, one winter deeper, one springtime lighter.
MILIOTI: You're a year old.
EISENBERG: That's more appropriate.
MILIOTI: Because it's a very flowery message a baby.
EISENBERG: Using one is - one is correct. I almost would give you the...
MILIOTI: Oh, it's a wedding anniversary.
EISENBERG: Yes, first wedding anniversary.
MILIOTI: That's silly.
EISENBERG: I know. That's how it's supposed to feel.
COULTON: That's silly (laughter).
MILIOTI: I imagine, though, if that was a baby card. That'd be so funny for a one-year birthday.
MENDES: Yeah, to give them, like, an incredibly eloquent - like, why can't you read this?
COULTON: Very long, multi-stanza poem.
MILIOTI: Stop stumbling around and sit down and listen.
COULTON: This is the last one. Camila, it's for you.
MENDES: All right.
COULTON: This is a thank-you card to a specific person. And it says, thank you for all the good hair days. You are the best.
MENDES: Is this is a thank-you to a hairstylist? I'm...
COULTON: It certainly is. It's right in the thank-you-hairstylist section.
MENDES: I definitely need one of those.
MILIOTI: I, like, completely shut down during haircuts.
MENDES: Why, 'cause you're terrified of the results?
MILIOTI: Yes, because I sit there being like, is this changing my face yet? Uh-oh. Was what I wanted plastic surgery, not a haircut?
EISENBERG: OK. That's the end of the game. Cristin, Camila, you are tied.
MILIOTI: True sisterly...
MENDES: Sisterly competition.
EISENBERG: Yeah (laughter). Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.