SuChin Pak: Girl In The World

Today, SuChin Pak hosts the wildly successful Lemonada Media podcast Add to Cart alongside comedian, actress and friend, Kulap Vilaysack.

From 2001 to 2010, SuChin anchored MTV News on TRL and ten to the hour every hour; hosted Video Music and Movie Award Pre-Shows and her docuseries, My Life (Translated); and narrated dozens of episodes of MTV Cribs and True Life.

Along the way, she interviewed everyone from Mariah Carey and Mary J. Blige to NSYNC and George Lucas.

As fun and wild a ride as it may have seemed for the young journalist, though, it wasn’t all Pop Rocks and pop stars. Her first major assignment was coverage of the September 11th attacks.

“It was so different because we all lived there,” she said. “It didn’t feel like a story. It felt very emotional. It felt chaotic. But it also felt really important and urgent in a way that’s different than when you fly in to a disaster or story and then you get to fly out.”

“[When the Blackout happened in 2003], it felt like that wound had never healed 100%. And even when you found out it was just a blackout like, for the first 24 hours [you were like], ‘Is it? Because we thought [9/11] was just a plane crash. When you’re reporting on that stuff, it really does change you.”

“When I see red carpets on TV, I can’t watch it. I have to turn them off,” she says. “It’s so traumatic for me. Every cell in my body is vibrating.”

“When it came to those shows, we just got the job done. And so once you wrap it in, you’re just like, ‘What just happened!?!’ And then that feeling of like, ‘I did it again! Oh, my God, I don’t want to do this for another two years. I’m done.'”

“It’s just a crazy rush of adrenaline. I still feel like I’m burnt out as a human now in my 40s. I’m still burnt out from the VMAs in the 2000s. I think it pretty much shriveled my adrenal glands.”

On this week’s You Hear It First Podcast, SuChin goes deep into her journey from her born-again Baptist household in Union City, California, helming MTV News on TRL in New York City. She talks about anchoring the VMAs, covering 9/11, interviewing her hero, ​​Gwen Stefani, working with Sway and Kurt, and that time Diddy crashed the red carpet. And she opens up further about the challenges and long-term impact of covering some of the century’s most significant stories.

Listen to You Hear It First on Apple or Spotify now.

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