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Week of Feb. 23-Feb. 29

Hey, you like podcasts? Make sure you check out Reasonable Discussions, the A.V. Club podcast, which posts bi-weekly. Podmass comments can be directed to podmass@avclub.com.


“When he sticks his finger up my ass, I’ll prove I should be the star of Our Town!” —Mike Birbiglia, on being accused of “theatrics” during his first prostate exam, The Moth

“I don’t really have a type, but I’m actively looking for someone that looks like my ex-girlfriend.” —“Overheard,” Stop Podcasting Yourself

“I guarantee if I took you to bed, you’d get demolished.” —Ben Schwartz to an antagonistic Björk (Matt Besser), Comedy Bang Bang

“We were falling like Gandalf.”
“And the idiot Hobbits we were talking to?”
“Ourselves.” —Tom Cavanagh on Michael Ian Black, on their descent into the pitfalls of snack-podcast fame, on Mike And Tom Eat Snacks

“Where is Skee-Lo now? I think maybe Cee Lo ate Skee-Lo.” —Dave Shumka, Stop Podcasting Yourself


The Partially Examined Life
“A philosophy podcast by some guys who were at one point set on doing philosophy for a living and then thought better of it,” The Partially Examined Life is one of the most popular philosophy podcasts on iTunes—and with good reason. Hosts Mark Linsenmayer, Seth Paskin, and Wes Alwan were all graduate philosophy students at the University of Texas at Austin before dropping out and pursuing other (more practical) careers. This accounts for two of the best elements of the show: the chemistry from long-term friendship among the hosts and a cynicism toward the snobbery of academic philosophy. The hosts select a significant philosophical text for each episode and enthusiastically explain and debate the merits of the main ideas presented in each, all in terms any layperson can understand. Episodes are a bit long—usually between 90 and 140 minutes—and they demand attentive listening, but they are pretty rewarding, especially if listeners take the time to read the text at hand.

Episode 50 tackles Robert Pirsig’s 1974 best-selling philosophical novel Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance, which poses questions about the relationship between science and technology and value judgments. The discussion touches on the story of Pirsig’s life, his view of human perception, and how and why humans judge the quality of things in the world. Recent host addition Dylan Casey and guest David Buchanan contribute a great deal to the conversation, which can get a little confusing at times, but, then again, no one should go into a philosophy podcast looking for clear-cut answers to some of life’s biggest questions. [CG]


Titanium Physicists
Inspired by Iron Chef, theoretical physicist Ben Tippett regularly gathers his team of champion physicist friends, along with a special guest,ts to discuss the strange and fringe ideas in physics. Some of the topics come straight out of science fiction, and the hosts try to make big ideas like time travel easy to understand by using cultural references like Doctor Who. Inevitably, though,, but at some point in each episode the issues get become so complicated that the discussion can seem incomprehensible to the uninitiated. Episode nine covers warp-drive spaceships, including their misrepresentation in fiction, and the recent discussion among physicists about how they may be theoretically possible. This episode serves as a good introduction to the show, because Star Wars and Star Trek have given people a basic idea of the concept. Fifteen minutes in, however, the math starts getting gets more increasingly complicated complex and it becomes hardharder to understand, though still fascinating. Potential listeners would be smart to have Google at the ready for quick references to equations they have likely never heard of. [AJ]


The Best Show On WFMU
Here’s a question to ponder before discussing this week’s #TomThon: How did Gary Tha Squirrel usurp Vance The Puppet as the most popular puppet on The Best Show? How is a weird, green, multi-eyed, prog-loving puppet less loveable than a rodent with a perpetually nervous countenance? His appearance practically sparked Beatlemania among Best Show fans on Twitter. This week: A.P. Mike sounds sober, and Tom Scharpling re-establishes himself as the Grinch by ranting against Pancake Day. (Who objects to free pancakes?) Ted Leo plays a live version of the excellent “Under The Hedge” (from 2001’s now out of print The Tyranny Of Distance), and Patrick Stickles from Titus Andronicus also plays some acoustic jams. It’s all great listening, and here’s an idea: Klausner, Scharpling, and Leo should just start a podcast together instead of appearing on each other’s various shows seemingly every other week. Make it happen, guys. [JD]

The Bugle #184: Wangderlust 
John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman swing in the other direction from last week by talking a lot about penises. Oliver’s opening stories are always better when they don’t feature whatever celebrity he just met, and this week’s entry confirms that rule with one of his more brilliant tales of being alone on the road. Another rule should be that The Bugle has more great euphemisms for penises than anyone else; catching them all in this episode could make a fun party game. Former producer Tom Wright adds another sausage to the party fest in the middle of themid- episode, inciting adoring screams of “Fuck Tom!” from long time Bugle fans and giving a solid assist to Zaltzman’s weekly pun run. The non-wang-related stories that wrap up the last 10 minutes are less inspired than their phallic brethren, but the change of pace prevents penis dick jokes from (somehow) getting old. These theme episodes are quickly becoming the best The Bugle has to offer. [AJ]

Comedy Bang Bang #146: Climbing The Ladder: Reggie Watts, Ben Schwartz, Matt Besser
As if to compensate for last week’s family-friendliness, Comedy Bang Bang offers one of its filthiest episodes in recent memory: Matt Besser (as Björk) merrily leads Scott Aukerman, Reggie Watts, and Ben Schwartz down an X-rated path that goes, at one point, to Besser suggesting that Schwartz could cause pregnancy by farting semen from his butt into a woman’s vagina. That joke floors an exhausted-sounding Aukerman, whose life (and, by transitive property, podcast) continues to be dominated by the Comedy Bang Bang TV show. Watts plays a significant part on that show, Aukerman asked Schwartz to come down at the last minute, and Besser’s probably always down to goof around, but this quickly assembled episode works a little better than its similarly shambling predecessors. Besser’s Björk character is obnoxious, but his interaction with Schwartz creates some of the episode’s best moments. Watts can’t help but be pushed to the background in the process, but for the most part, episode 146 works—though it may be another “for diehard fans only” one. [KR]

Hang Up And Listen: The How Reasonable Is Your Doubt Edition
The HUAL crew doesn’t talk about NASCAR much, so it’s little surprise that when they do in this episode, they talk about the thing everyone talks about: Danica Patrick, the most visible driver in the sport, who to this point has an Anna Kournikova-like gap between her marketing power and her actual accomplishment. But with a little help from Slate culture editor and unexpected NASCAR enthusiast John Swansburg, the gang pivots nicely into other areas of the sport, like the pros and cons of restrictor plates in limiting speed to reduce horrible accidents. Elsewhere, Josh Levin pokes holes in the ridiculous spectacle of NL MVP Ryan Braun trumpeting his innocence following a successful appeal of his 50-day performance-enhancing drugs suspension, and Sports Illustrated dunkologist Chris Ballard offers good insights on the sad spectacle of the Slam Dunk competition. [ST]

How Did This Get Made? #31: Birdemic Live: “Weird Al” Yankovic, Whitney Moore
“Weird Al” joins Jason Mantzoukas and Paul Scheer at the top of the episode to rip into the Birdemic’s first 47 bird-less minutes, with Mantzoukas establishing the story as an “autistic man’s pursuit of a beautiful woman for purposes, I believe, of murder.” Said beautiful woman, c, joins the panel along with “Weird Al,” whose personality fits in perfectly. Once June Diane Raphael shows up, the birds enter the discussion, triggering an exhaustive list of frustrations, many of which Moore explains. A good indicator of director James Nguyen’s process: For her role as a Victoria’s Secret model caught in the middle of a “birdemic,” Moore auditioned in a high school parking lot. She never received a full script because it was put together as the production trudged along for seven months. Moore’s most telling story is Nguyen’s response to whenever actors complained about the illogical story and asked why their characters behaved so idiotically: “Because it’s a movie.” And now it’s a movie that’s about to get a sequel. [OS]

How Was Your Week? #51: “HWYW Live”: Sandra Bernhard, Tom Scharpling, Ira Glass, Joe Mande
Julie Klausner hosts an all-star panel for her latest live show, which means the television shows she talks about in the opening are a few weeks old, but it’s okay, because she has Tom Scharpling, Joe Mande, Ira Glass, and Sandra Bernhard as guests. There’s a lot to learn from this live show: Ted Leo ends up being the funniest person on stage, especially when he grills the Peanut Chews guy on the ingredients of his product. Scharpling seems like a much nicer guy when somebody else is in charge of the hosting duties, and he and Klausner have a funny discussion about what Barbra Streisand and Sam Kinison would talk about over dinner. Mande plays his favorite Andy Rooney clips, which don’t quite translate to audio, but still generates some laughs. Like the previous live recording of HWYW, this one can be difficult to follow, but the live format also introduces an enjoyable element of chaos. (Bonus points for Leo having a member of Nation Of Ulysses in Ted Leo’s house band, making How Was Your Week? punk as fuck.) [JD]

The Mental Illness Happy Hour #49: Nikki Glaser
Comic Nikki Glaser and host Paul Gilmartin make this episode of Mental Illness Happy Hour go down rather easily, even as they confront eating disorders and suicide. Still, neither tries to fool anyone into thinking that the problems at hand are all settled: Although she seems hesitant at first, Glaser gives listeners an almost up-to-the-minute update n her struggle to exercise self-control around food. This episode lies in that broad middle ground between the podcast’s more mellow guests and the brutally traumatized ones, but that’s where Gilmartin does some of his most constructive work. [SG]

Mike And Tom Eat Snacks #50: Devil Dogs
Michael Ian Black and Tom Cavanagh celebrate their 50th episode with plenty reminders of why anyone would do a silly thing like listen to a snack podcast for 50 episodes. During the first half of this week’s MATES, they spin self-fiction about the fame going to their head, and an even more elaborate story about Cavanagh hanging around during the shooting of Downton Abbey. As they bite into their creme-filled devil’s-food snack cakes, Black discovers he’s a “tantric Devil Dog eater,” and there’s a lot of highly detailed inanity about whether milk improves the snack. Factor in some talk about their favorite fonts, and the episode hits MATES’ sweet spot. [SG]

Nerdist #172: Ellie Kemper
Once a viral video star and now a strong supporting player in stuff like The Office and Bridesmaids, Ellie Kemper has an affable personality that gels with the Nerdist crew’s. The chemistry among the four of them keeps the episode light and breezy, as they bounce from topic to topic, from Moby to the dangers of Reddit’s “Ask Me Anything.” Kemper admits to not being the most technologically savvy Nerdist guest—she even cops to having a Twitter-phobia—but her improv experience allows her to participate in any topic the crew covers. The episode runs a bit long, but the playfulness keeps it flowing naturally, and in the end justifies the length. [DA]

Never Not Funny: #1012 Locking It In With Dwayne Perkins
One of the benefits of Never Not Funny’s loose format is the freedom to devote the necessary time to mine a single topic for all its worth. Sometimes it’s merely a stage for Jimmy Pardo’s wit, and sometimes it’s because the crew landed on something meaty and inherently engaging. Intern Dan Katz’s disclosure of the reasons of a recent break-up earns him a spot on-mic, and gives the crew a chance to dissect Katz’s morality for the entirety of the first half. It’s a touchy subject that welcomes guest Dwayne Perkins to offer some funny advice and ease his way into the episode. Perkins comes off a little sleepy at times, but his way with subtle understatements, an endearing ignorance of his own TV career, and dry bits on justifying frugality all contrast well with Pardo’s manic questioning. Credit goes to the crew for not dwelling on the fact that Perkins is the first black male guest; as we saw in Aisha Tyler’s episode, it’s an open invitation for hackwork. [SM]

Sklarbro Country #83: Living On A Edge: Ben Schwartz, Chris Cox, Dan Van Kirk
Jeremy Lin is understandably a hot topic of conversation on Sklarbro Country, even before fan favorite Racist Vin Skully (Chris Cox) spreads fear about an imminent Chinese invasion of sports that leads to images of Chairman Mao being flashed subliminally on scoreboards to indoctrinate fans. Cox is hilariously hateful in his paranoid vision of a “stir-fried nightmare” of Lin “bounding around like a Shaolin acrobat,” but guest Ben Schwartz of House Of Lies and Parks And Recreation is equally entertaining discussing with the Sklars what Lin would need to do to squander the goodwill he’s accrued (something terrible to a baby?) and what he’s meant to Schwartz and his Knicks-loving, penny-pinching father. As he acknowledges, the Lin story transcends sports to appeal to anyone who likes a heartwarming tale of the triumph of the human spirit, but this fast-paced, quick-witted podcast also excels in less timely bits like extended riffs on Morganna the Kissing Bandit and the perversity of Foot Locker’s referee uniforms. [NR]

The Smartest Man In The World #147: Homunculi
Even considering Greg Proops’ speeding, all-terrain-vehicle approach to stand-up, it’s impressive how frequently he returns to the subject of punctuation this week, even talk-singing the first line from Vampire Weekend’s “Oxford Comma.” This episode’s voice impersonations range from a suave Bela Lugosi to a choking David Bowie singing “Young Americans,” or in other words, from terrific to unfortunate. Of course, The Smartest Man In The World is habitually all over the place, but at this show, recorded in Raleigh, North Carolina, Proops sounds especially hungry, not even losing steam during a lengthy summary of assorted civil-rights cases. [SG]

Sound Opinions: #326: Dessa
Minneapolis singer and MC Dessa isn’t a household name, but as a member of the Doomtree collective she’s an important player in hip-hop’s cutting edge. This interview offers a really good introduction, as Dessa proves to be smart and articulate not just about her own music but the conservatism of the rap scene. As an artist who mixes genres as well as singing and rapping, Dessa has resisted pressure to put her music in any one niche, confident that listeners won’t care about labels as much as hip-hop purists. Here’s hoping she’s correct. [SH]

Stop Podcasting Yourself: #206: Kulap Vilaysack
This week, Stop Podcasting Yourself starts slowly, but develops a hilarious momentum as Who Charted? co-host/Children’s Hospital actor Kulap Vilaysack joins Graham Clark and Dave Shumka for a wide-ranging riff-fest that covers Cee Lo, Skee-Lo, J-Lo, and faux pho. This week’s Hulk Hogan News—a recently added, not-as-incongruous-as-it-sounds feature—starts in the squared circle, picks up a golden-era tag team, and goes halfway around the world to culminate in a zinger Lord Of The Rings reference. A no-filler “Overheard” segment reports a squirrel story, a drive-by busking, some unusually placed and proportioned lady parts, and the cross-cultural appeal of Bryan Adams’ signature ballad. The episode requires your full attention, but if it doesn’t make you laugh at least once, you may be clinically dead. [DXF]

Stuff You Missed In History Class: The Fairy Tale Life Of Hans Christian Andersen
It wouldn’t be surprising if Hans Christian Andersen had strange formative years, considering the surreal fairytales he wrote, and his life story doesn’t disappoint. A creative child obsessed with puppets, he was the son of a shoemaker and lost his grandparents to insanity or prison (for having too many illegitimate children—normal grandparent stuff). As he grew, he became a gangly young performer with strange features, crashing parties to show off his singing and dancing skills. That he didn’t end up in an asylum too is a little surprising, but Andersen always had benefactors to save him, meaning he had something in his personality that’s not especially obvious in his writing. [DT]

Stuff You Missed In History ClassBessie Coleman: Daredevil Aviatrix
Bessie Coleman was the first licensed black pilot and a woman, meaning she overcame a lot of barriers in the early 20th century. A bright child, Coleman watched her family leave to fight in World War I and became enamored with the advancements in airplane technology. When her brother returned from the war, she began applying to flight schools, assisted by an influential customer at the barbershop where she worked. Coleman was eventually accepted to a progressive French flight school, so she learned French and headed overseas. Although she died tragically during a flight at a relatively young age, her accomplishments were considerable. That she was a pilot in particular makes her story rife with inspirational metaphors, and this is episode is one of the best in this year’s Black History Month tradition. [DT]

Stuff You Should Know: How Spies Work
Hosts Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant break the news gently: Spies do massive amounts of accounting. There’s no point in masking it up Ethan Hunt-style, because spies are usually dull working stiffs nobody has ever heard of, establishing trust with people over months and years. The upshot is that some of the gadgets are cooler than you might expect: Digital spy cameras have been sending wireless images over radio for decades, and for 50 years spies could point a laser at a window vibrating from a conversation, and the vibrations could be translated into dialogue. Spying’s not confined to government organizations by any stretch; private organizations and pretty much everyone with a gadget fund is collecting data and analyzing it. The weird part seems to be what they do with the information, and this episode has examples from cola to the Battle Of Midway. It does get a bit overwhelming, but the stories don’t end up becoming the unfiltered white noise that so much espionage chatter becomes. [DT]

The Todd Glass Show#33: Jen Kirkman, Daniel Kinno (Part 2)
Todd Glass was exposed to a whole new audience when he publicly came out on a standout episode of WTF With Marc Maron. The show was notable for its idealistic intensity, but Glass’ impassioned turn on the popular podcast provided only a vague hint of the inspired frivolity, improvised shenanigans, and madcap antics to be found on his consistently delightful podcast The Todd Glass Show. On the podcast, the host specializes in unrepentant silliness, often with a musical bent. Episode #33 offers particularly distinguished variations on some of the show’s running jokes, like a homemade jingle for guest Jen Kirkman from the show’s ostensibly heroin-and-coke-addled jingle composer, which begins conventionally enough but rapidly devolves into profane, drug-addled lunacy. Elsewhere, Glass and Kirkman illustrate that Boots Randolph’s “Yakety Sax” and the closing music from Family Guy can make anything sound zany, even stories involving a suspiciously Benny Hill Show-style Holocaust. The Todd Glass Show is traditionally much longer than most comedy podcasts (and that’s not even including the occasional “after show”), but on another stellar episode, Glass, his very game guest, and sometimes sidekick Daniel Kinno make nearly 140 minutes of high-energy, gloriously goofy comedy fly. [NR]

Who Charted?: #65: Dubstep On The Grass: James Adomian
For this episode, hosts Howard Kremer and Kulap Vilaysack don’t use the charts to get to know guest James Adomian. Rather, the charts are merely a jumping off point from which Adomian can launch into his many impressions, making liberal use of the Jesse Ventura impression that he established as a fan favorite on Comedy Bang Bang. (An argument between Ventura and Adomian’s spot-on Michael Caine provides one of the episode’s highlights.) Adomian also tackles many members of the L.A. alt-comedy scene, with pitch-perfect impersonations of Marc Maron, Andy Kindler, and Eddie Pepitone, but his Todd Glass almost makes Vilaysack collapse a lung from laughing so hard. Adomian is one of those impressionists that seems to get entirely lost in his characters, and his commitment to the bits makes this episode particularly enjoyable. [MS]

WTF With Marc Maron: #256: Diablo Cody
People who find Diablo Cody insufferable will find ample justification for their disdain during her appearance on WTF With Marc Maron, whether the Juno screenwriter is discussing a beloved coffee table book of vintage menus or describing Juno as “outsider art.” But the episode also offers plenty of reasons to admire the controversial, divisive screenwriter, TV show creator, and soon-to-be-director. Cody is compelling and candid discussing the slippery barriers separating different forms of sex work, her past as a dilettante stripper/memoirist, the creative process for her brilliant Young Adult screenplay, and especially her complicated relationship with her eccentric and brilliant black-sheep brother, who would make a fascinating WTF guest himself. After a rocky beginning and unedifying opening monologue, this episode improves as it goes on, and at just over an hour, leaves plenty of room for a repeat visit to the Cat Ranch. [NR]

WTF With Marc Maron: #257: “Weird Al” Yankovic
As usual, “Weird Al” Yankovic comes off as one of the nicest, smartest, most genuine celebrities around in his chat with Marc Maron. What’s amusing about this installment of WTF is Maron’s incredulousness that Yankovic legitimately likes his fans and enjoys playing all-ages shows at state fairs. Maron’s comments and questions could come off as backhanded (especially in regards to the “silliness” of Yankovic’s humor and his young, male first fans) but it’s clear that Yankovic’s personality and attitude come as something of a revelation to Maron, who seems to secretly envy his happy nature. Maron does take Yankovic to a dark place with a discussion of the tragic and sudden death of his parents, but despite itself, even that segment of the conversation has its positive, inspiring notes. [CZ]

You Made It Weird: #26: Dave Holmes
The meeting of the Holmeses gets off to an unremarkable start, with a solid half-hour of mostly skippable trivialities, including several minutes of dry shoptalk. Once Pete finally gets to the first “weird” thing about his guest, though—that he placed second in MTV’s Wanna Be A VJ contest in 1998—things start to pick up. The tale of Dave’s one-off with cocaine follows, as does some music talk that’s interesting enough, but the episode really hits its stride when they discuss Dave’s homosexuality. The two compare childhood stories—Dave dealing with his sexual orientation and Pete dealing with his innate effeminacies—all while trying to sort out their relationships with religion. Some of it is heartbreaking, and all of it is engaging. It’s a truly great episode past the 30-minute mark. [CG]

You Made It Weird: #27: Hannibal Buress
Hannibal Buress has enjoyed a fast rise to cult stardom and modest fame as a comic’s comic, former 30 Rock staff writer, and critic’s darling, but his visit to You Made It Weird focuses compellingly on some of his professional and personal failures. The episode’s most fascinating segments focus on Buress’ disastrous year-long stint as a Saturday Night Live writer who never quite got into the show’s rhythm or matched the success of fellow newcomer and critics’ darling John Mulaney. Buress is equally candid conceding the less-than-genius nature of his earliest attempts stand-up (though he’s quick to point out that almost no 21-year-old has a hilarious, well-developed stand-up act) and some of his more disastrous would-be romantic flings. Plus, Buress offers easily the sweetest podcast-closing recitation of “Keep it crispy” to date. Holmes’ catchphrase is an intentionally idiotic homage to early Pauly Shore, but damned if Buress’ deadpan cadence doesn’t make it sound cool. [NR]


Doug Loves Movies: Sean Cullen, Brody Stevens, Brad Williams, Brett Gelman
If you enjoy Doug Loves Movies but wish it had more loud, improvised singing, then this is the episode for you. Canadian comedian Sean Cullen’s off-the-cuff movie theme songs are only mildly impressive, but they at least liven up this otherwise sleepy, overlong (90 minutes!) episode recorded at the Vancouver Comedy Fest. Everyone on stage seems game, but for some reason—Canadian politeness? Festival fatigue?—the show feels more subdued than usual, especially The Leonard Maltin Game, which is over and done so quickly it barely registers. [GK]

Doug Loves Movies: Morgan Spurlock, Joe Lynch, Kevin Pereira, Sean Jordan
This week’s second episode, recorded back at DLM’s normal UCB stomping grounds, is long on pre-game chit-chat and short on gameplay. It features what might be the least-impressive Build-A-Title outing in the show’s history (Gordon And The Whale?!), prompting Doug Benson to admonish filmmaker Joe Lynch, “I thought you’d be better at this.” The Leonard Maltin Game fares a little better, but the panel this week never quite seems to gel, perhaps because Morgan Spurlock tends to take up most of the air in the room. [GK]

Freakonomics Radio: The Days Of Wine And Mouses
This week’s hour-long episode is what host Stephen Dubner calls one in a series of “mashupdates”—mashups of earlier podcasts with updated information. But it really just feels like two tenuously related podcasts jammed together. The first half is a completely different subject than the second half, and no one would lose out missing the latter, which is a haphazard look into what companies can do to gain back customers’ trust if they’ve been wronged. The first half is still worth a listen, though, as it argues what many likely think: that good wine isn’t always the most expensive. [MM]

Monday Morning Podcast
Bill Burr admits at the top of this week’s episode that his brain is fried from doing two shows just before recording; unsurprisingly, that hinders the quality of the episode. There are a handful of decent moments, and Burr certainly seems to be having a good enough time—he couldn’t possibly be more tickled by his description of primitive colonic methods—but, as a whole, it never really gets off the ground. [CG]

The Moth: Mike Birbiglia: There’s Something In My Bladder 
Those who’ve watched Mike Birbiglia’s comedy become more story-oriented over the years will have already heard his anecdote about having a tumor in his bladder. So hearing it on The Moth won’t be new to everyone, but it’s good to hear him bounce it off an audience that’s a little removed from the stand-up world. [SG]

Nerdist: #173: Willem Dafoe
With a film career that stretches back 30 years, Willem Dafoe has an immense and impressive body of work—so much so that Nerdist’s Chris Hardwick and Jonah Ray spend their hour-long interview in awe of their guest. Consequently, the episode never takes off. There are interesting anecdotes here and there—namely Dafoe’s brief attempt at stand-up, where he crafted an incredibly creepy joke about his mother—but the bulk of the episode is just Hardwick and Ray praising Dafoe while being giddy about the fact they are speaking with him. [DA]

Stuff You Should Know: Fasting: Deadly Or Not?
This controversial topic has the hosts at unusually opposing positions early on: When Josh Clark explains how fasting can lead to the occasional hunger-hallucinations, Chuck Bryant interjects “Yeah, because you’re dying,” and for a moment it seems things are about to get passionate. Unfortunately it dies down almost immediately when Clark explains the “Western versus Eastern” views on hallucinations, then sputters down to dullness when they begin checking off the types of fasting and whether there’s anything mock-worthy about them. [DT]

The Thrilling Adventure Hour/Superego: #60: War Of Two Worlds, Part 1
The Thrilling Adventure Hour’s writing duo and Superego’s improvisers join up to create a rambunctious, partially scripted, partially improvised episode that moves fast and confuses faster, tackling some kind of outer-space event and NASA’s “going out of business party.” That said, Thrilling Adventure’s big, goofy ideas always offer a good jumping-off point for ad-libbing, and the episode’s phone-tree joke gag shows the promise of the collaboration. [SG]

Uhh Yeah Dude: #312
Last week’s technical difficulties persist in this especially phobic episode of Uhh Yeah Dude, which sees Seth Romatelli extolling the virtues of couch-potatohood, because it’s impossible to be trapped in an avalanche, catch a disease from a fountain, or fly into a mountainside when you’re tucked in a La-Z-Boy. Jonathan Larroquette’s fears, on the other hand, mostly revolve around that distracting line-noise. Aside from a spirited discussion of California’s threatened porn industry, however, the episode never quite finds its groove. [CW]

Walking The Room: #92: Nikki Glaser
Nikki Glaser, on her tour of various podcasts this week, finds herself in the odd position of Dave Anthony and Greg Behrendt telling her she’s messed-up. Still, the guest-host chemistry doesn’t quite reach Walking The Room’s usual levels until a mid-episode group riff on hip-hop, bridges, and rapping about bridges. [SG]