The comedy podcast universe is ever expanding, not unlike the universe universe. We’re here to make it a bit smaller, a bit more manageable. There are a lot of great shows and each has a lot of great episodes, so we want to highlight the exceptional, the noteworthy. Each week our crack team of podcast enthusiasts and specialists and especially enthusiastic people will pick their favorites. We hope to have your ears permanently plugged with the best in aural comedy.
We Should Have a Podcast - A Very Special Episode
Leigh: We’re only a week into 2016 and I’m pretty confident in saying this is the most important podcast you’ll listen to all year. But let’s backtrack for a second before we get to that. About two weeks ago, Beth Stelling posted a picture on Instagram of her legs covered in bruises, along with a brave and honest message about an abusive relationship. By now, if you missed the original post, you’ve no doubt seen it reposted by the tons upon tons of comedians and fans supporting her. In the post, she also states “an ex-girlfriend of this ex-boyfriend came to me and shared that she experienced the same fate.” That ex-girlfriend was Courtney Pauroso, one of the hosts of We Should Have a Podcast.
Courtney, along with help from co-host Corey Podell, comes forward in support of Beth to share her experience and expose the truth about her abusive relationship with the same guy. She opens up about what went on during their three years together, what made it hard to speak up, and eventually connecting with Beth. While Beth and Courtney were both careful not to use the guy’s name, others in the comedy community were quick to identify Cale Hartmann. Hartmann has since posted a response on Facebook in an attempt to explain himself? I’m not really sure what exactly to call it. What I am sure of, is that it’s probably the one place on the internet where people in the comments have done and are continuing to do a great job.
The episode is incredibly honest, emotional, and moving, and by recording it, she’s helping so many others see how powerful sharing your story can be.
Doug Loves Movies – Andree Vermuelen, Patton Oswalt, Bert Kreischer and Geoff Tate
Marc: I’m kicking off the year reviewing one of the staples of podcasting, Doug Loves Movies, as a reminder that the old adage “out with the old” doesn’t necessarily always apply. This year marks DLM’s 10th anniversary, making it one of the longest running regular shows out there in Podcastland. And with this installment it’s clear that the formula that host Doug Benson cooked up back in 2006 still makes for fresh laughs. The usual lineup is tweaked just a bit this show, with four guests instead of three — Andree Vermuelen, Patton Oswalt, Bert Kreischer, and Geoff Tate. Three of them are veterans of the show, while Vermuelen is making her debut. But make no mistake, she’s no shrinking violet — when the comic zingers start…zinging, she’s right there in the thick of it. And most of the zingers seem to aimed Kreischer’s way, starting with his outfit and harping on many of his answers to host Benson’s opening questions to his guests. Maybe it’s out of the desire to see how many times they can get Kreisher (host of his own podcast, the Bertcast) to give out his weirdly contagious high-pitched laugh. Or maybe it’s just that comic’s instinct for fresh blood and going in for the kill. Funny as the assembled crew is, Benson included, Oswalt is like some comedy ninja, dancing around a platoon of slower-moving samurai. Pulling out riffs using references both common and arcane, it feels like he’s pulling his punches a little bit just to give everyone else a chance to stay in the scramble. There’s so much funny in this show that’s there’s only time to get off one of games the show has become known for, “Last Man Stanton.” And when the dust clears at the end, comedian Geoff Tate emerges the winner, movie senses honed by opening for Benson on the road at a number of gigs during the last year or so. Doug Loves Movies definitely rings in the laughs for 2016.
The K Ohle - Get Lost with Jon Glaser
Elizabeth: After an absence of several months, Kurt Braunohler returns to The K Ohle, recording from New Jersey, where he has been taking care of with his mother who is battling cancer. The episode starts with a few stories about growing up with his single mom from the experience of hanging out at the pediatric ward where she was a nurse to his mom’s incredible kindness to an aging coworker. Later, an initially nervous Jon Glaser packs up his snacks, gets blindfolded, and goes outside his comfort zone for a new installment of “Get Lost.” Jon talks about his latest project, Neon Joe, Werewolf Hunter, now airing on Adult Swim and online, which came about from a bit he did on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Kurt and Jon discuss the writing process of the show, the eclectic cast, which features dramatic, comedic, and musical talents, and the importance of making it feel different from Delocated. After narrowly avoiding some police activity, they arrive at the secret destination. I won’t reveal it, but I will say that it left both Kurt and Jon in awe.
Other Podcasts We’re Listening To:
The Fix - That New Holiday Boo
You Made It Weird - Lauren Lapkus
Paul Mecurio: 2 Chairs & A Microphone - Adam McKay
Ronna & Beverly - Zoe Bell
Got a podcast recommendation? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Leigh Cesiro is a writer living in Brooklyn who only needs 10 minutes to solve any Law & Order: SVU episode.
Elizabeth Stamp is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York.