Entries in sklarbro country (51)

Friday
Aug122011

The AV Club: Podmass August 4-10

The AV Club Podmass write-up features some old favorites with a bunch of comedy shows winning the day...or week. Doug Loves Movies psuedo Human Giant reunion episode continues to win praise - rightfully so. Check-out the comedy episodes making the list:

The Best Show On WFMU
Comedy Bang! Bang! #117 "Can’t Never Did Nothing" - featuring David Cross, Ruben Fleischer
Doug Loves Movies - featuring Aziz Ansari, Ruben Fleischer, Rob Huebel, Paul Scheer
Mike And Tom Eat Snacks #29 "Hershey’s Take 5"
Sklarbro Country #54: - featuring Josh Malina, Nick Kroll, Jason Nash
The Sound Of Young America - featuring Brooke Gladstone, Lee Unkrich
Walking The Room #63 "Sad Bottom And The Death Cult"
Who Charted? #36 - featuring Paul Scheer

Click here for the complete Podmass recaps.

        

Friday
Aug052011

The AV Club: Podmass July 28-August 3

The AV Club scaled it down this week with their podcast praise via the Podmass recap. A lively Sklarbro Country episode and two unorthdox WTF episodes are highlights. The AV Club also gave a mention to The Earwolf Challenge. And, of course, another monthly Superego episode plops to great acclaim. The comedy shows/episodes making the list this week:

Comedy Bang! Bang! #116 - featuring Todd Glass, Jessica St. Clair
Sklarbro Country #53 - featuring Paul Scheer, Kevin Seccia, Langhorne Slim
Superego #3:6
Uhh Yeah Dude #282
Walking The Room #62 - featuring Jonah Ray, Man Tennis
WTF with Marc Maron #196 - featuring Wyatt Cenac, Horatio Sanz, Tom Scharpling, Sam Lipsyte, Kevin Allison
WTF with Marc Maron "Just For Laughs Keynote Address"

Check-out the full Podmass list of recaps here.

      

Thursday
Aug042011

Splitsider Top 5 Comedy Podcasts: August 4

     

Splitsider's comedy podcast authorities, Jesse Fox and Joe Berkowitz, released another fun-packed Top 5 list. Recaps included, too. Bonus. It's the beginning of the month, which means Superego earns another round of raves. The rest of the Top 5:

Comedy Bang! Bang! #116 - featuring Todd Glass, Jessica St. Clair
Superego #3:6
Uhh Yeah Dude #282
Who Charted? #35 - featuring Scott Aukerman
WTF with Marc Maron #196 "Live" - featuring Kevin Allison, Sam Lipsyte, Tom Scharpling, Wyatt Cenac

Honorable mentions include another stellar week of Affirmation Nation with Bob Ducca, a lively Sklarbro Country #53 (featuring Paul Scheer, Kevin Seccia) and a guestless Jordan, Jesse Go! #186.

Check-out the complete lowdown on the episodes here.

Friday
Jul292011

The AV Club: Podmass July 21-27

The AV Club staff binged on podcasts this week and it shows in their weekly Podmass selection of the week's best episodes. The podcast overdose shows in their expansive "Best" list, which as usual is dominated by the comedy shows. Like an overstuffed weekly stand-up show lineup, here are The AV Club's favorite comedy podcast episodes for the week:

The Best Show On WFMU
Comedy Bang! Bang! #115: “The Plug-in Drug” - featuring David Wain, Ken Marino, Paul Rudd
How Was Your Week? #20: “Bev’s Bananas” - featuring Maria Bamford
Mike And Tom Eat Snacks #27: "Lorna Doone Shortbread Cookies"
Nerdist #109 "Live at SDCC '11": Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Wil Wheaton
Never Not Funny #908: Todd Glass
Sklarbro Country #52: Myq Kaplan, Chris Cox
The Sound Of Young America - featuring Jeff Garlin
Uhh Yeah Dude #281
Walking The Room: "Platypus Surprise Face And Porn Nest"
Who Charted?: "It’s Pronounced RO-bits" - featuring Bob Odenkirk
WTF with Marc Maron #195 - featuring Demetri Martin
WTF with Marc Maron #194 - featuring Rob Riggle

Check-out the complete Podmass recaps here.

            

Friday
Jul292011

Splitsider Top 5 Comedy Podcasts: July 28

     

Jesse Fox and Joe Berkowitz released another Top 5 Comedy podcasts list for Splitsider and presumably comedy podcast fans. This week's list highlights the off-beat shows and episodes, along with some praise for some newer shows.

How Was Your Week? #20 - featuring Maria Bamford
Judge John Hodgman #32: The Cow Beef
The Ronna & Beverly Podcast #5 - featuring Nick Kroll
This American Wife #34 - featuring Paul F. Tompkins, Paget Brewster, Craig Cackowski, Hal LublinMarc Evan Jackson, Mark Gagliardi, Ben Acker, Ben Blacker
WTF with Marc Maron #195 - featuring Demetri Martin

Splitsider's honorable mentions are all about variety: video games to sports to some military dicussions - all under the comedy umbrella. These shows include: The Indoor Kids #3 (featuring Pete Holmes, Emily V. Gordon), Sklarbro Country #52 (featuring Myq Kaplan) and WTF with Marc Maron #194 (featuring Rob Riggle).

Check-out the Splitsider Top 5 List and recaps here.

Sunday
Jul242011

The Earwolf Challenge Recap - Week 2: Theme Music & Intros

The gap between what you think you’re creating and what you’re actually creating never ceases to amaze. You may think you have a perfect understanding of what you’re trying to do, backed by the advice of someone who seems to know what they’re talking about, but somehow, in the course of realizing your vision, things don’t go quite as planned. It only takes a slight creative misstep to stray from yesterday’s good idea to the stickiness of today’s mess.

These close calls kept coming to mind, time and again, while listening to the first two episodes of Week 2 of The Earwolf Challenge. For the first proper challenge of the competition, host and head judge Matt Besser tasks the contestants with crafting the perfect theme song and intro for their respective shows.

Episode 2.1

Monday’s episode is full of brief but interesting conversations on the nature of theme songs and show introductions, specifically regarding the purpose they serve. Besser’s advice gets more and more focused as the episode progresses, until by the end he has a pretty succinct bullet-point list of what a good intro should accomplish.

  • Bring up the energy.
  • Let the listener know what the show’s about.
  • Get the audience on board right away.
  • Remembering even casual decisions about what elements to include will be interpreted by the audience as significant, deliberate choices.
  • Choose music that clearly says something about the hosts, the episode, or the show.
  • Get in and get out.

Listening to the episode, I can almost see the contestants nodding along in enthusiastic agreement as Besser helps them develop a rough map of where they’re going. Some have previously established theme music and intro sequences. Some don’t. But every conversation ends on a positive note. Besser is admirably quick to point out he and the judges aren’t asking them to fit into a mold, but to simply take in what’s been discussed and make the best intro sequences they can. And this certainly seems to be happening. From Elizabeth Laime’s plan to only make a few tweaks to Totally Laime’s existing intro to Brett Hamil’s amazement that Ham Radio has “made it nine episodes in without ever having to address this,” shows the contestant-host back-and-forth flowing in a positive direction.

Episode 2.2

Jason SklarJimmy PardoAll of which makes Tuesday’s episode that much more perplexing.

For Tuesday and Wednesday’s Besser is joined by Jimmy Pardo -- or Pardeaux, if you prefer -- and Jason Sklar, two well-known and successful podcasters who should be familiar to just about any fan of comedy podcasts. (Where is Randy Sklar in all this? I like to imagine him scratching forlornly at the studio door.) Pardo’s Never Not Funny was among the first wave of podcasts, and relatively few in the podcasting scene can match his experience. Conversely, the Sklars are only now just hitting the 1-year mark on their weekly Sklarbro Country. There’s an obvious care and attention to detail put into every episode that belies their still brief podcast run.

Choosing Pardo and Sklar as the first guest judges is setting the bar pretty high. And it makes for a pretty brutal judging episode. While Pardo and Jason readily appreciate the quality of the more complicated entries, most notably those from Left Hand Radio, The Fort and the aforementioned Ham Radio, they, to put it bluntly, don’t actually like most of them. And nobody is better at letting you know he doesn’t like something than Pardo. Sklar brings up a great point not mentioned in Episode 2.1: your listeners will have to live with your intro every single episode. “Shorter, tighter is better,” Sklar says. Basically sums up the entire week’s challenge.

Personally, I agreed with just about everything the judges offered up. After my potentially prudish poo-pooing of “questionable language” in last week’s episodes, I felt a little vindicated when Pardo repeatedly voiced the very same opinion. From Ham Radio’s racism-skirting joke about “thick black ladies” with “ghetto nails” to Television Zombies’ off-putting F-bomb. Pardo didn’t like it. My problem isn’t a delicate sensibility. It’s these attempts at edgy humor are going for the easy laugh. It’s the same reason (future guest judge, I presume) Paul F. Tompkins says he tends to shy away from profanity in his own work. He wants to know the audience is laughing at his material, not at the presence of a bad word.

The clear frontrunners after Tuesday’s episode are Totally Laime, The Bob and Dan Cast and The Little Dum Dum Club. What do these intros all have in common? They’re all short, punchy and give you a good feel for the show.

Episode 2.3

Everyone else gets pretty low marks from the judges. On Wednesday it's The Fort, Left Hand Radio and Beginnings ending up on the bottom. The judges can't always agree on what puts them on the bottom. Based on the week’s challenge, they're all solid choices. I'm disappointed to see one of my predicted front-runners, Left Hand Radio, wind up in the bottom three. Though, I can't argue with the judges’ reasons.

   

In the end, Beginnings meets its Earwolf Challenge demise. The judges' overall rationale, one that will no doubt come up time and again in the weeks to come: the show just isn't ready for prime time. If Earwolf's going to commit to producing the winning podcast for the next year, they're not going to want to take any chances. Especially when there are still strong contenders in the field. Beginnings hosts’ decision to broaden the scope of the show’s theme and their contention they're “nobodies” (a pretty major slip-up, if you ask me) reveals these podcasters are still feeling things out. Really, this challenge was never about music and an intro. It was about seeing how well the contestants know their own shows and how adept they are at communicating that understanding to the audience.

Speaking of feeling things out, I enjoyed hearing Besser’s decision-making process as he puzzled through how he'd announce the eliminated contestant. Ironically, nearly all of the music cues for the various segments in these episodes went on way too long.

Each week, in memoriam of the eliminated podcast, I'm going to listen to one of their episodes. This week it's you, Beginnings. We hardly knew ye.

Saturday
Jul232011

The AV Club: Podmass July 14-20

The A.V. Club released their weekly Podmass podcast recap, again highlighting comedy shows and episodes. This week's favored shows featured a bunch of strong personalities. Plus, everyone's favorite made-up trivia game, Doug Loves Movies, reached dramatic heights with its semi-regular tournament of champions episode. The comedy episodes receiving the Podmass recognition:

The Best Show On WFMU
Doug Loves Movies: Tournament of Champions Final - featuring Paul F. Tompkins, Scott Aukerman, Samm Levine 
How Was Your Week? #19: “She’s A Cold Soup” - featuring Rob Delaney, Michelle McNamara
Mike and Tom Eat Snacks #26: Toblerone
Never Not Funny #907 - featuring Maria Bamford
Sklarbro Country #51 - featuring Chris Cox
The Sound of Young America - featuring Errol Morris
Walking The Room #60: "Douche Fruit and The Shame Run"
WTF with Marc Maron #193 - featuring Richard Lewis

Check-out the full Podmass post here.

         

Friday
Jul152011

The AV Club: Podmass July 7-13

It's Podmass time! It this a thing people say yet? Maybe just me and the rest of the eager podcast producers scouring the series-of-tubes for any sliver of podcast recognition? Well, thanks to The AV Club for proving that sliver, yet again - courtesy of their hand-dandy weekly Podmass column. The Podmass comedy highlights include:

The Apple Sisters #7: Vegas
The B.S. Report - featuring Seth Meyers
The Best Show On WFMU
Comedy Bang! Bang! #112: "Since You’ve Been Gone" - featuring “Weird Al” Yankovic, Paul F. Tompkins
Comedy Bang! Bang! #113: "Skanking Hayride" - featuring Bobby Moynihan, Seth Morris
Doug Loves Movies - featuring Edgar Wright, Samm Levine, Jordan Brady
Never Not Funny #906 - featuring Pat Francis
The Pod F. Tompkast #12
Sklarbro Country #50 - featuring Aisha Tyler, Chris Cox, Pat Bertoletti
The Sound Of Young America - featuring Simon Pegg
WTF With Marc Maron:#191 - featuring Will Arnett, Keith Robinson, Marina Franklin, Judy Gold, Jon Benjamin, Jonathan Katz
WTF With Marc Maron: #190 - featuring Todd Hanson

Check-out the full Podmass recaps here.

          

Monday
Jul112011

Earwolf Weekly Update: July 11

Paul Rust *Photo by Carlos SerraoIt's Tuesday - which means there's already a days worth of quality Earwolf programming out in the world. More to come the rest of the week, too. Via their weekly newsletter, Earwolf announced some fun shows this week. The the launch of The Earwolf Challenge takes center stage. Other highlights include a Vegas-themed Apple Sisters, Bobby Moynihan from SNL guesting on Comedy Bang! Bang!, Paul Rust talking with Paul Scheer and gang about Green Lantern on How Did This Get Made? and a long overdue full-episode visit from comedic voice talent all-star Chris Cox to Sklarbro Country

Check-out the full Earwolf scoop here.

Friday
Jul082011

The AV Club: Podmass June 30-July 6

The AV Club released another collection of their favorite podcast episodes for the week via their Podmass post. As usual, comedy reigns supreme, with many of the recognized shows coming from the comedy side of things. The AV Club writers tend to give weight to the bigger show names (Doug Benson, Earwolf and Marc Maron). It's still all relatively undiscovered at this point. And, these longer running big name shows are doing the heavy digital lifting, bringing polished quality episodes to fans on a consistent basis. No need to hate on that. The comedy highlights include:

The Apple Sisters #6: Independence Day - featuring Jason Ritter
The Best Show On WFMU
Comedy Bang! Bang! #111: Hi, How Are You? - featuring Harris Wittels, Brett Gelman, David Guy Levy
Doug Loves Movies - featuring Tom Lennon, Ben Garant, Samm Levine
How Was Your Week? #17: “Cat Bride” - featuring Michael Rapaport, Larry Murphy
Sklarbro Country #49: The Sprint Panda - featuring Brian Unger, Ugly Duckling
Superego:#3.5
WTF with Marc Maron #188 - featuring Christopher Titus
WTF with Marc Maron #189 - featuring Nick Thune

Check-out the full Podmass recaps here.