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.
Dumb People Town - Scott Aukerman - Too Spicy to Put in Print
Marc: It’s been about a year since the Sklar Brothers (Jason and Randy) and Daniel Van Kirk threw open the gates of Dumb People Town and, in that time, they have ripped the lid off some straight-up dumbassery. This week they welcome Scott Aukerman to sit in judgment with them as Van Kirk makes his way through three deliciously dumb news stories. These things already read like they feature some of the characters that have wandered into the Comedy Bang Bang studio, and Aukerman is a pitch-perfect fourth commentator to marvel over the idiocy on display. There’s a dude who gets his head stuck in a microwave oven filled with cement (no lie!), a British woman who lost her fiancé because she was canoodling with a ghost (or so she says…), and a Pizza Hut customer who wasn’t happy with the joke scrawled on her pizza box that got delivered to her door (how good is a gag from the Hut going to be?). As Aukerman says, it isn’t that people are getting dumber, “it’s that the gap between dumb and smart is widening.” [Apple Podcasts]
Doughboys - Carl’s Jr./Hardee’s 3 with Alana Johnston
Mark: As any diehard fan of Doughboys knows, the show operates in waves. Burger Boy and Spoonman’s trademark animosity fluctuates from playful valleys to “Wiger hates fries” peaks. Maybe it’s the recent release of Star Wars Episode VIII, the close-quarters Texas tour with Gabrus, the recent Feral Audio drama, or all of the above, but the recent run of episodes feels like we’re due for another big blow-up. There’s no one more suited to slice through the tension than perhaps the most underrated Doughboys guest, Alana Johnston AKA “The Knife.” Her memorable appearance on the Patreon-only Double left fans wanting more, and unlike most Carl’s Jr./Hardee’s locations, she delivers. Wiger is in rare form as throughout the show he trips balls on Turkish coffee. Listening to three people read their text chain aloud may sound terrible – because it is terrible – but it’s exactly why Doughboys is as personal and funny as any podcast out there. Also, shout out to Star Wars month on the Doughboys Double, in case you were begging to hear Mitch complain about Disney Star Wars on yet another outlet. [Apple Podcasts]
Homophilia - Fortune Feimster
Elizabeth: After celebrating Dave Holmes’s HQ win and processing Riverdale and American Crime Story, Dave and Matt McConkey are joined by comedian and actress Fortune Feimster, who shares the story of her recent engagement, from her original plan being foiled by fires to an overly enthusiastic waiter who nearly spoiled the surprise. They break down the power dynamics and personalities of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and then Fortune, who stars in the new Mindy Kaling show Champions – which has not one but two LGBT characters – talks about the representation she saw as a kid growing up in the South and how she eventually learned about her sexuality thanks to her Fairy Gay Godmothers. They also discuss why she never made it onto SNL, her gold star status, dates with a Mormon man, and her awesome, supportive mom, Ginger. [Apple Podcasts]
Bitch Sesh - Unfashionably Late with Riki Lindhome
Kathryn: This week on Bitch Sesh Danielle Schneider and Casey Wilson are joined by Riki Lindhome, creator and star of Another Period, one half of musical comedy duo Garfunkel and Oates, and loyal Housewives fan. Together they mourn the passing of founding New York house-husband Bobby Zarin, which sparks a broader meditation on grief and remembrance. If death is a loss then life must be a gift, and so too sadness often contains within it an element of joy, or at least relief. In this case relief takes the form of Casey’s father Paul, who makes another shocking secondhand appearance in one of the most bizarre, unbelievable stories ever told on the podcast. It should be heard in its entirety, but the climax involves Casey being brought in to do additional dialogue recording for her own mother’s funeral. Paul Wilson, the Fifth Beatle of the Bitch Sesh universe, has that rare strength of character that continually tops itself without him even being physically present. This anecdote alone carries the entire episode, and if you have any interest in Vanderpump Rules the remainder of the runtime will only serve as a bonus. [Apple Podcasts]
Sawbones - Don’t Eat Tide Pods
Marc: Is there a family more invested in hosting podcasts than the McElroys? My Brother, My Brother, and Me; The Adventure Zone; Schmanners, and so forth. Sawbones, A Marital Tour of Misguided Medicine, features McElroy brother Justin and his wife, Syndee, delving into the myth, mystery and truth of medical issues. The better half of this McElroy couple is a doctor, so has some authority on these matters. Justin is just pretty much a wise ass. It makes for a fun combo, especially as they delve into the latest idiot craze: Popping Tide Pods. If you’ve missed this one so far, it seems teens and college dopes are sticking laundry detergent pods in their yaps and hoping to get them out before the coating dissolves completely and they end getting rushed to the ER. Big fun. The McElroys talk about the ingredients in these things, why they’re harmful, and what damage they can do. This leads them into other confounding challenges that kids have been doing in recent years, including the Milk Gallon Challenge (try as one might, it’s pretty much impossible to down a gallon of moo juice in an hour), and the Frostbite Challenge (put some salt on your arm, then cover it with ice. Voilà! Instant frostbite. Isn’t your mom proud?) Too bad the only people likely to listen to the McElroy’s lively banter on these topics are those who already know these shenanigans are bad for you. [Apple Podcasts]
Other Podcasts We’re Listening To:
Keep It - Mo’Nique Money, Mo’Nique Problems
With Special Guest Lauren Lapkus - Conan O’Brien: Wild Horses Live at Largo
That’s My Story Period - Amy Albert, Megan Lera, and Angie Greenup
Fact Up! - Episode 100
The Hilarious World of Depression - Rachel Bloom Finds Her Voice, Then Uses It To Sing About Stealing Pets and Moving to West Covina, California
Got a podcast recommendation? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Elizabeth Stamp is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York.
Mark Kramer is a writer, comedian & human boy from Staten Island, New York, but please don’t hold that against him.
Kathryn Doyle is a science writer from New York.