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. Also, we'll keep you posted on the offerings from our very own podcast network. We hope to have your ears permanently plugged with the best in aural comedy.
Comedy Bang Bang #191– 2012 Holiday Spectacular
LINDSEY: All I wanted for Christmas this year was a stocking full of foam, and CBB made my dreams come true. Bjork sang some carols (along with Neil Young and Billy Bragg) and Bill Cosby-Bukowski caught us up on the lives of his kids while telling a new Christmas jelloem that is sure to bring a tear to your eye. Seriously, these X-mas episodes of Comedy Bang Bang are probably some of my favorite hours of podcasts, and this one ranks right up there with the best. And we got a Womptacular? Oh, Scott Aukerman, you shouldn't have. Oh yeah, to make things even better, PFT and Nick Kroll stop by. There were way too many funny people in one room. I loved every minute of this thing and cannot wait to give it another listen. I don't even like Christmas and this got me in the spirit. Foam and jelloems will do that to a girl. I love you, Comedy Bang Bang. Thanks for the greatest present ever.
The Gentlemens' Club with Caleb Bacon #154 – The Goodbye Show
MARC: If you've never caught The Gentlemen's Club with host Caleb Bacon, now's your chance to download the latest and last edition with his guest, PodCRASH's Chris Gore. The only way to catch more is to work your way back through the archives because Bacon's moving on. It's been a good run, with a retinue of comedians, show biz folk and porn stars parading through his Los Angeles apartment. He's funny and has been gracing writers' rooms on such shows as Sullivan & Sons. And with a guest like Gore, Bacon set the stage perfectly – since Gore uses HIS appearances as the basis for his own PodCRASH podcast – and his guest abruptly turns the tables and begins pulling details out of Bacon. Questions not just about most memorable and embarrassing moments during the show’s history but also more personal matters: Having had a couple of dozen porn stars parade through your pad, Caleb, did you ever get lucky? (Spoiler alert: Yes.) In its earliest days, The Gentlemen’s Club was a double act, and this farewell episode ends with a goodbye from Caleb’s former podcasting partner Tim Hammer. Fans of the Bacon don’t despair — he returns to the podwaves in February with a new venture: Man School.
The Adam Carolla Show 12/14 – Mark Hamill and Dave DameshekJAY: The Force is strong with this podcast. You can't do much better than booking the great Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill. However, this episode of The Adam Carolla Show begins with sound effects man Bald Bryan announcing his upcoming book deal. Next in studio is Adam's former radio show sports guy, Dave Dameshek, who is an uber-Star Wars nerd himself. They discuss Barbara Walters' Most Interesting People, fat Presidents, sports news, and what people should do to let others know they are pulling out of a parking spot. But enough burying the lead. Mark Hamill is in to talk about his new movie, Sushi Girl. He explains what it was like growing up as one of seven children, going to high school in Japan, and of course, Star Wars. He talks about the audition process, working with George Lucas, and some behind the scenes trivia. Hamill is a good sport about the film and even runs some classic lines with Dameshek, clearly fulfilling one of Mark's lifelong dreams. Then its on to the news with Alison Rosen. You'll be amazed by how much Hamill knows about African American sitcoms from the 80's. For those of us of a certain age, Star Wars is synonymous with childhood. It is nice to hear Mark Hamill reminisce about his part in the cultural phenomenon. I wish him success with his new film in the only appropriate way: May The Force be with you.
Doug Loves Movies #626 – 12 Guests of Xmas III
ELISE: The third annual Doug Love Movies' 12 Guests of Xmas starts out with a barefaced lie, as 15 guests are methodically introduced onto the UCB LA stage for an episode that will border on three hours. "What the fuck is going on right now?" Scott Aukerman asks less than 15 minutes in. It's added the list of usual questions for these packed episodes – Who will be eliminated first? Who will be the guest everyone gangs up to hate? Which seemingly-lighthearted jokes will actually be kind of mean? Who will fuck up the Leonard Maltin game this year? And who will win it all, thus qualifying for the next from-the-sound-of-it-never-gonna-actually-happen Tournament of Champions? With more than a dozen comedians on one tiny stage, there are constant distractions and sideshows, and eventually the attempts to explain physical gags or off-mic jokes to the listeners are abandoned. "The best stuff is not gonna happen in your ears," even Doug admits. Nonetheless, it's a fun marathon and perfect company during tedious holiday travel, featuring more Bane impressions than anyone would want and the intriguing statement "I could totally see your penis and not care." Who could ask for anything more?
Earwolf Presents #19 – The Christmas Womptacular
It's been a long wait since we were first promised a one-off Marissa Wompler podcast on a Comedy Bang Bang episode in July
, but the show is finally here and it was totally worth it. For the uninitiated, Marissa Wompler is Comedy Bang Bang
's incompetent teenage intern, played by the very funny Jessica St. Clair, who's become one of the show's most popular characters. In "The Christmas Womptacular," Wompler appears alongside her demented mentor and teacher Miss Listler (another popular Bang Bang
character played by St. Clair's comedy partner Lennon Parham) to host a Christmas show that quickly goes off the rails. Wompler and Listler are joined by guest Scott Aukerman, Wompler's longstanding straight man, Eric "Gutterballs" Gutterman (voiced by Jason Mantzoukas), Wompler's much-talked-about love interest who was never heard until now, and her stepdad Seth (Brian Huskey). The result is an incredibly funny podcast that wisely puts one of Comedy Bang Bang
's best characters front and center. Hopefully, there are more Womptaculars to come!
The Dana Gould Hour #13 – "Poll to Pole" with Mike Murphy, Eddie Pepitone, John Ennis, Tom Kenny, Andy Paley
ROGER: Republican political consultant Mike Murphy was the surprising comedic star of the latest edition of The Dana Gould Hour. Murphy – a frequent Meet the Press commentator – had been on the podcast before, but received significantly more air time in this politics/Christmas themed episode, taking advantage with many witty lines about the media and his own party's recent candidates for President. The admitted friendly acquaintance of Mitt Romney's obvious gift of language, combined with the host's admission that Jay Leno has always been a nice person to him may turn off listeners who prefer to not think of their enemies as human beings, but they would be missing out on the fun TDGHstaples, like the always entertaining, kind of sad, and amusing biographies about old showbiz actors, and Political Talk with Two Guys from Boston, which gleefully strays more and more from the topic the characters claim they are going to be talking about with every episode. ("This isn't a very yule tidey question, but why do dildos have balls?") Gould's take down the sacred Rankin/Bass classic Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer by convincingly pointing out its utter lack of tolerance, and the segment where school children read the top JFK assassination theories to holiday music, were admitted attempts to stay on course and graft the two themes together, which would had been awkward if they weren't so amusing.
This Week in the Splitsider Podcast Network:
The Complete Guide to Everything – Richard Marx
This week Tim proposes all December holidays be boiled down into a 1 hour surprise celebration and Tom goes to a Richard Marx concert. We also discuss The Hobbit, commercial jingles, remarking when brothers look like each other, and Tom has trouble accepting that Regis Philbin isn't coming back. Additionally we solve a problem about a man's fear of flying.
The Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin Show – Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin 2012 Year-End Jefftacular
This week on the Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin Show I am very pleased to present The Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin Show 2012 Year-End Jeff-tacular. I have gone back and asked nearly all of 2012's Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin Show guests to spend five minutes describing their favorite thing of the year. Answers ranged from movies to music to software to once-in-a-lifetime days.
A Funny Thing – Ophira Eisenberg Beds Half a U2 Cover Band
Our story this week: Ophira Eisenberg, host of NPR's Ask Me Another, is torn between two members of a highschool U2 cover band called B4. How does it end? In blood and humiliation of course. Oh Ophira, how long must we sing this song?
Left Handed Radio – "Too Late"
On this episode: We get trapped in the Inescapable Death Box, Skeleton Warehouse has a Christmas sale, a man donates too much blood, "Letters to Santa," Michael quits drinking, College Basketball Round-up, a commercial for Gold Ribbon dog food, a woman looks for jetpack parts for a new project.
Photo credit: Earwolf
Lindsey Allen lives in Austin, TX. She has perfect teeth and a nice smell. A class act, all the way.
Roger Cormier was set up as a patsy.
Elise Czajkowski is a freelance journalist in New York City.
Bradford Evans is Splitsider's Associate Editor.
Marc Hershon is host of Succotash, the Comedy Podcast Podcast and author of I Hate People!
Jay Kuperstein is a writer, founder of ComedyK.com, and attorney working in Washington, DC