The Nerdist blog posted a nice write-up of their very own Vanessa Ragland receiving a nomination for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Woman of the Year honor. The co-host of Pop My Culture, Ragland recently launched her campaign to raise awareness and funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society over the next several months. During her campaign, Ragland is injecting a bit of humor, including a mini-fundraising goal of getting her father to cut his ponytail. Check-out the post for more details!
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I'm still living in the past it seems. A podcast highlight of the past week reflected the same remincing spirit. I picked the Pop My Culture part 1 2011 recap show for my Splitsider "Week In Comedy Podcasts" selection. It's an incredibly fun listen. Even includes your obligatory Paul F. Tompkins guest appearance, too. Here's the lowdown via my Splitsider excerpt:
Cole Stratton and Vanessa Ragland, the ever upbeat and often offbeat Pop My Culture hosts, take this whole intimate just-hanging-out-don’t-mind-if-we-do podcast thing up a notch with their first installment of their 2011 Year-In-Review show. They bring back five of their favorite guests from the past year for a jovial party to discuss their 2011 favorites and loathsome least favorite things pop culture-y. Part 1 focuses on the positive. Pop My Culture doesn’t take the easy way out and offer up some half-ass clip show with commentary. They basically recorded their own party. A party with lists! It’s a treat to listen in on an honest, adult and free-flowing conversation among a group of talented and fun folk. Don’t worry – Stratton and Ragland are still in charge, keeping the loose format from bursting into full party chaos. Their party/podcast guests for the night include: Tony Hale, Rob Paulsen, Meredith Salenger, Paul F. Tompkins and James Urbaniak. Each of them adds their own perspective to the proceedings. Above all, Stratton and Ragland’s force of personality and likeability again manage to make pop culture something grounded, adult and enriching. Go figure. Although, Part 2, turning to the what-I-don’t-like game, could always descend into a brawl.
Here's the complete list of the Splitsider episode picks from the other contributors. Special points for improv4humans going on a crazy good run of late. The Long Shot, too.
Jordan, Jesse Go! #206 - Eddie Pepitone
improv4humans #8 - Sean Conroy, Brett Gelman, Curtis Gwinn
Pop My Culture #64: “Pop The Cork: The Best of 2011, Part 1” - Tony Hale, Rob Paulsen, Meredith Salenger, Paul F. Tompkins and James Urbaniak
The Smartest Man In The World "Elbows"
Comedy Bang! Bang! #139 - Bob Odenkirk, Brian Huskey
Honorable mentions include: Fitzdog Radio (Andy Richter), The Long Shot #415 (Brett Gelman), The Nerdist #156 (David Cross), WTF with Marc Maron #224 (Russell Brand) and You Made It Weird #13 (Nick Kroll).
This week Cole Stratton and Vanessa Ragland announced Pop My Culture moving over to The Nerdist Network. According to their site, everything should stay the same for fans of the high-energy and always fun bi-weekly interview show. Stratton and Ragland continue to stand-out as one of the best podcasting duos working today.
Plus, they still have their regular site, too!
Cole Stratton and Vanessa Ragland are adding another trick to their pop culture bag. This past week, the always-fun podcast duo launched their new Culture Pops web series for Chinashop. The online magazine partnered up with Stratton and Ragland to produce an ongoing series of interviews with entertainment and regular folk, along with some cool venue visits and more. In their podcast blog, Stratton and Ragland promise to include plenty of Pop My Culture favorites in the web series, too. There's no word on the release schedule for Culture Pops.
The first Culture Pops episode featured a visit to the famous Roxy on Sunset Strip and interview with its owner, Nick Adler. There's also a fun web interview with Knight Rider's Deanna Russo.
A very cool Freaks and Geeks themed episode of Pop My Culture will be recorded live at The Improv Lab in Hollywood this Wednesday (March 30th). The live show will feature interviews with several cast members from Freaks and Geeks, the 1999 Paul Feig and Judd Apatow created show.
According to the A Special Thing posting, the current "scheduled to appear" list includes: Samm Levine (Neil Schweiber), John Francis Daley (Sam Weir), Sarah Hagan (Millie Kentner).
There's a lot of love out there for this 1-season cult favorite. It's exciting to see the Pop My Culture duo, Cole Stratton and Vanessa Ragland, put together such a fun show.
This show will be the debut Pop My Culture live show for the Los Angeles area. First of many, we hope.
UPDATE (3/28, 5:05PM PST): Steve Bannos (Mr. Kowchevski) & Natasha Melnick (Cindy Sanders) added to the lineup.
Everyone's friends! Or at least it seems that way in comedy podcast land much of the time. Guests and hosts are often jumping back and forth on each others' shows, serving as a some oddball closed-circuit guest loop. The kumbayah inner circle spirit can come off a tad clique-ish after awhile but it often leads to some of the more free-flowing playful been-there, done-that conversations on many of the shows.
Two podcasts with great group dynamics working magic - The Long Shot and Pop My Culture - did the host swap these past few weeks. The results of these crossover appearances highlighted the strengths of both shows: a great group dynamic. These shows ran effortlessly, like listening in on great playful nonsequiter conversations among funny friends.
The Pop My Culture crossover highlight included everyone riffing on the Detroit Robocop statue announcement. The Long Shot crossover featured some great reflection and eventual dark humored riffing on the late great Phil Hartman's death.
The delight of most episodes of The Long Shot's is the distinct personality of the four hosts - Sean Conroy, Eddie Pepitone, Amber Kenny and Jamie Flam. Each stakes out his own corner and there's lots of friendly tension at work, along with a great "giving-each-other-crap" vibe. This is highlighted by Sean Conroy's self-imposed mission to challenge Pepitone and Flam constantly.
While The Long Shot crew entertains through tension, the Pop My Culture duo, Cole Stratton and Vanessa Ragland, work as an effortless positive-no-matter-what team. Stratton and Ragland always seem to put their guests at ease right from the start. They embrace the "we're here to have fun" spirit no matter the guest, skillfully transitioning from standard interview segments to their playful pop culture discussions and games.
Check out these two crossover episodes for a fun glimpse into these two team-powered shows.