I'm deep in the throes of The Edinburgh Fringe Festival this month but still trying to stay on the podcast beat. Being in Scotland during a U.K.-based Olympics means I got to be surrounded by a light murmur of Olympic Fever. If there was ever a time to turn to John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman for a little dose of Bugle levity, this was the week. Not to mention they deliver the best on-point Olympic satirizing you're liking to find this Summer. Funny is always a little more sharp closer to home. Here's my post for the Splitsider "Week In Comedy Podcasts" column:
It’s Olympics time so it’s necessary to return to the always funny British podcasting duo of John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman, aka The Bugle. Zaltzman has been dutifully churning out short Olympic-themed episodes of late, but episode #203 sees (hears?) Oliver and Zaltzman back together, in the usually clever tip-top satirical form. Oliver jumps right in, jabbing Zaltzman about his severe case of Olympic fever. The two agree on the sociological working theory of the Olympics being created to allow us to ignore human catastrophe. There’s top-notch bashing of the opening ceremony, including some quality Queen mockery. (Always a favorite.) There’s a lot of badminton humor, including an abundance of “shuttlecock” jokes. And there’s talk of horse dancing. Too easy for the Bugle duo, perhaps? Highlights come when the two comedians try to make each other laugh with their descriptive jokes and one-liners. It’s a friendly competition that always raises the humor bar. The prewritten bits by Zaltzman and Oliver always add an extra bit of comedic layering, as well. They even add onto the Olympics BS with some poignant satire of the current Syrian violence and political strife. The jam-packed episode concludes with Oliver recapping the recent Chick-Fil-A/homophobia silliness with a dutiful bit of comedic criticism, complete with an inquisitive bit of rage on where other food chains stand on the important issues. Yet, again The Bugle sounds the alarm for all of us sane and sighing at the world.
Here's the complete list of comedy podcast episode picks from the rest of the Splitsider crew:
A Bit of a Chat with Ken Plume – Armando Iannucci
The Perfect 10 Podcast #2 "The Old, The New, and The Slutty"
Professor Blastoff #64 "Tig's Cancer Diagnosis/Autism"
The Bugle #203 "No Medals for Syria"
The Nerdist #240 – Will Ferrell
You Made It Weird "Live from Montreal" - Eric Andre, Ryan Hamilton, Sean Patton, Jamie Lee, Chelsea Peretti
Roadstories – Moshe Kasher, Kyle Kinane, Matt Braunger