Tis the season for year-end shit! Fa-la-la-la-la and the rest of it. It's that exciting time of year when Giant Electric Penguin picks its favorites. Then it's off to Twitter to tag the winners in a tweet they can ignore from now until Christmas and beyond!
Naturally, I've decided to share My Favorite 10 Podcasts of 2013 first. I say naturally, because as most of you know, I require the sustenance only podcasts can provide for my continued existence. Something happened to my body earlier this year--it may have been during the third hour of a You Made It Weird--but now I can absorb nutrients through my ears, nutrients provided by not only the 10 amazing pods on this list, but all 23 of the ones I listen to on a regular basis. It's sick.
So, without any further what-have-yous, the list!
10. The Horror: Put out twice each week by Relic Radio, The Horror re-airs horror plays from the good old days, when, following a dinner of mutton and pearl onions in white gravy, a family would put on its Sunday best, gather around the radio box and listen to creepy stories about infidelity, murder and offensive stereotypes. Mom would dab at her brow with a lace hankie; the children would sit huddled together, quite certain that another night of horrifying nightmares awaited them; and Daddy drank. Ah, the American dream. I've been giving The Horror a lot of ink on the pages of GEP lately and for good reason. The Horror presents a slice of Americana that I kind of miss retroactively. I'm glad Relic Radio is keeping it alive.
9. Go Bayside: Comedian and fellow Morrissey acolyte, April Richardson, watches an episode of Saved by the Bell and picks it apart with a funny friend. As a huge fan of both Saved by the Bell and funny people, Go Bayside seems perfectly catered to my podcast needs. The fact that Richardson is so passionate about the show (and has access to people like Paul F Tompkins, Howard Kremer and Jake Fogelnest, among many others), makes it even better. Also, I've been meaning to write her an e-mail about the whole "door-leading-from-the-hallway-directly-into-Mr.-Belding's-office" thing. My wife knew a principal who had a back door, of sorts, that led directly into one of the school's hallways. Apparently, he used it to make a quick escape when someone he didn't want to talk to was coming.
8. The /Filmcast: You'll find as this list progresses that I listen to a lot of movie-related podcasts in which bad movies are poked, prodded and generally shit upon. The /Filmcast offers a more serious take on film, though not so serious that the proceedings are dull and laugh-free. A typical episode finds host Dave Chen, co-host Devindra Hardawar and a special guest discussing what films and TV shows they've been watching, then talking about the latest film news and ending with an in-depth review of a current release. It's entertaining, as well as, insightful, and Chen and Hardawar have a good chemistry. And speaking of chemistry (BOING!), Chen used to do a pretty great Breaking Bad podcast, called The Ones Who Knock, that I particularly enjoyed listening to as I navigated that show's final season.
7. Extra Hot Great: Extra Hot Great returned this year after a little hiatus and I couldn't be happier. EHG is a podcast concerned with all things TV. Highlights include: Is This Worse Than Jazz?, without which I would have never known how absolutely abysmal The Mindy Project's theme song is; The Canon, a growing list of the best episodes of television ever; and Game Time, which consistently distracts me from my work duties.
6. Bloody Good Horror: I remember I wanted to find a podcast that focused on horror films, as it is a genre I am very passionate about (obligatory reminder that I intended Giant Electric Penguin to originally be a horror-focused blog that wasn't call Giant Electric Penguin). The first pod to pop up in my search was Bloody Good Horror. Turns out, it was all I needed. The horror talk is top notch, but what keeps me coming back are the hosts of the show. They have a rapport that is difficult to beat, and they are quite gracious to their listeners as well. And I'm not just saying that because host, Eric, liked one of my pictures on Instagram. They seem like nice dudes.
5. We Hate Movies: Some more nice dudes, who are equally gracious to their listeners (and not because of all the RTs I've gotten from them, OK?!?), the gang over at We Hate Movies do what I like and they do it well (and with copious amounts of wonderful swearing and mock anger!). Simply put, the WHM crew watches a movie that sucks, then they painstakingly, and hilariously, kick the shit out of it.
4. Doug Loves Movies: DLM has been around for a good long time and it remains one of the best podcasts in the pod-o-sphere, which is probably a real thing by now, right? In fact, I like all of Doug Benson's podcasts (DLM; Dining with Doug and Karen; Getting Doug With High: the forthcoming Doug Loves Sleeping). Doug Benson is awesome!
3. Comedy Bang Bang
I've been listening to Comedy Bang Bang since the beginning, when it was Comedy Death Ray and it played goofy comedy tunes rather than Stamps.com ads between segments), and it just gets better and better. Highlights in 2013 included: the introduction of new Earwolf intern, Gino Lambardo (Please put Lambardo and Marissa Wompler together as soon as possible! PLEASE!!!); a visit from Michael Jackson, on vacation from Hell; Marissa Wompler's 17th Birthday Party; Paul Rust's Creepies; several memorable visits from 2013 CBB MVPs, Lauren Lapkus and Horatio Sanz; and Jon Daly and Zach Galifinakis' deep appreciation for the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
2. The Best Show on WMFU
Last month, Best Show host, Tom Scharpling, announced that he's ending his show after 13 years. I'm bummed, but I get it. Doesn't mean I gotta like it, but I get it. I, of course, will follow Tom to whatever he does next (Check out My 10 Favorite TV Shows of 2013 later this month for proof, not that I owe any of you proof, ya jerks!). People who know me know that The Best Show is pretty much my favorite thing. Period. I once made the mistake of saying that to someone in front of my wife. A friend asked me about the Best Show t-shirt I was wearing and I responded, "It's a radio show out of New Jersey. It's basically my favorite thing ever." "That's nice," my wife said, rolling her eyes. I quickly amended my statement, placing The Best Show second, after my family. So, yeah, it's second, but it's a strong second, I mean, it's right there pushing hard on first, letting first know who's boss. [I'll post more about The Best Show next week.]
And finally, my very favorite podcast of 2013 is...
1. The Flop House
Take two writers for the Daily Show, the world's coolest dude, a bad-ass house cat and Hollywood's dumbest movies and you have The Flop House, my favorite podcast of 2013. Dan McCoy, Elliott Kalan and Stuart Wellington (seen above not in that order) are three of the funniest dudes around and the Flop House fan community on Facebook is pretty awesome. I usually don't get into all that (posting on podcast's FB pages, interacting with other fans, etc), but Flop House listeners are a funny, intelligent and accepting bunch, and I'm glad to count myself among them. Flop on, Peaches!