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A world-famous jock chats with some nerds

The best podcasts for the week of March 22-28

Podmass comments and suggestions for future coverage can be directed to podmass@avclub.com. 


“On Thursday, the Museum Of Forbidden Technologies will open their new exhibit, called ‘Thought Crimes.’ Anyone who attends the exhibit is obviously interested in learning about forbidden technologies, and will be arrested immediately.” —Cecil, Welcome To Night Vale

“I’ve watched Shark Tank before, but watching it high, it made me want to be more aggressive when I’m negotiating business deals now. ‘Hell yeah, 85 percent all the time, motherfucker!’” —Hannibal Buress, Nerdist

“Do you remember when we stole that tapestry of the Virgin Mary from the Hunt Museum and I fucked on it for a year?” —Patrick McMahon (Andy Daly), The Andy Daly Podcast Pilot Project

“That feeling of ‘This isn’t right. I just want to go and I can’t stand this one more minute.’ I can’t imagine what that’s like. The closest I can come was sitting through Oliver Stone’s last movie.” —Paul Gilmartin on the struggles of motherhood and Savages, The Mental Illness Happy Hour

“Easy does it, buddy! Some day, you’re going to get punched.” —John Hodgman, Judge John Hodgman

“She smells like my mim mim’s tater-tot casserole." —Pick-up artist Randy on host Andrea Silenzi, Why Oh Why

“There are meatheads [in sports], but there are meatheads in film or dentistry or whatever else too.” —Jonah Keri, Nerdist

“I was about to be Kirstie Alley’d.” —Australian comedian Magda Szubanski after discovering tabloid photos of herself at the beach, The Moth

“I’ll take a ‘zippity-dip-dip-dap’ any day. Puts me in a good mood.” —Pete Holmes on the timelessness of Bill Cosby impressions, You Made It Weird

“She could be like Joey Pants in Memento.” —Josh Clark on the wife of famous amnesia sufferer Clive Wearing, Stuff You Should Know

“I don’t know how much it’s my job to report on the deaths resulting from past weather. I’m more of a forecaster. A bunch of people died, but it’s going to be sunny tomorrow.” —John Gemberling, Improv4Humans

“You can’t just say your vagina is a house and then change the subject.” —Julie Klausner, How Was Your Week?

“So many great films of the golden studio era kept going back to the ocean liners because they were playgrounds, and kind of universes, unto themselves.” —Michael Phillips, Filmspotting


Why Oh Why?
Countless programs have attempted to follow WFMU stalwart Seven Second Delay in the past 20 years. For a time, it seemed like Andrea Silenzi was just another talented radio producer whose vision was doomed to crash and burn in the station’s unintentionally cursed Wednesday night 7 p.m. slot. And then Silenzi met Randy, a comically conservative, salt-of-the-Earth pick-up artist/Quizno’s ad man with a meticulously kept “do it journal” who lets Silenzi document everything from him calling her puffy to the intricacies of his relationship with his escort. The program exploded from there, as a healthy contingent of displaced Friends of Tom rushed to crown Silenzi the new champion of radio no one believes they can hear.

Silenzi has covered Midtown Manhattan gang bangs and let the tape run while couples talk about cooking and eating one another’s decomposing bodies. She’s doled out dating advice courtesy of hyper-articulate radical feminist communists and her own Grandma Phyllis. She’s appeared on NPR’s Planet Money to prompt a discussion of the economics of online dating and subjected her listeners to hearing her attempt at getting an IUD. With the devoted following she’s attracted—including a nearly record-setting performance in her freshman fundraising marathon—there’s no sign of the weirdness slowing down, either.

Why Oh Why is Savage Love for people who can’t stand the mouth on that guy, This American Life for those who’d prefer Mike Birbiglia harass Ira Glass on it’s-not-a-dates at Bubba Gump’s Shrimp Company. Silenzi’s success thus far at WFMU has positioned her at the forefront of a new generation of radio producers and consumers, whether she’ll concede to it or not. Viva la revolución. [NJ]


Biggest Fan
Biggest Fan bills itself as “the podcast where two guys are the biggest fans of a topic for a week.” That’s an interesting premise, but unfortunately it’s not really brought to fruition. Instead, it’s more of a show about two guys who discuss a topic they kind of know a bit about, with a lot of digressions and banter. Which is fine, actually. Kyle Fergusson and Brockett Vola have a fantastic rapport, and they’re capable of filling 90-minute conversations about beef jerky or red wine with rapid-fire quips and interesting observations, even if their podcast isn’t quite living up to its premise. What it lacks in substantive insight, it makes up for in entertainment value. [DD]


The Andy Daly Podcast Pilot Project #8: Kiss Me, I’m Patrick McMahon LIVE!
The season finale of The Andy Daly Podcast Pilot Project is unique from the first seven episodes in a couple noticeable ways, but it somehow provides a perfect ending to a brief but brilliant series. Aside from being the only installment recorded during a live show, it’s also far more upbeat than anything that preceded it. Struggling Irish storyteller Patrick McMahon is quintessentially Daly (a slightly dark but unfortunate soul you can’t help but root for), but the intoxicating (if not intoxicated) energy from the audience and the authentic ditties of the Irishmen lend a welcome air of celebration to the proceedings. Brimming with inspired performances and iffy accents from Paul F. Tompkins, Scott Aukerman, and Sean Conroy, “Kiss Me, I’m Patrick McMahon” is perhaps the most consistently hilarious pilot Daly and Matt Gourley have produced. Now begins the wait for a potential second season. [TK]

The Bugle #264: Making Nothing Out Of Something
During another week with no shortage of news signaling the world’s unavoidable descent into darkness, John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman are in top form as they point out the media’s continued efforts to focus on all the wrong things. The pair assembles a convincing theory about Putin’s true motivation to invade Ukraine, and it may or may not involve a secret army of elite killer dolphins. Oliver in particular, however, is especially entertaining as he marvels at the worldwide lack of journalistic integrity that went into covering unsubstantiated reports of a state-mandated rule in North Korea to adopt the Great Leader’s “business in the front, famine in the back” haircut. Toss in easy jabs at the Catholic Church and vague imagery of Pope Francis as Tony Montana, and you’ve got another episode that’s still a more reliable news source than anything on basic cable. [TK]

Comedy Bang! Bang! #278: Only Tones: Matt Berninger, Old 97’s, James Adomian
When an episode has this many people, it’s bound to be a bit of a mess, and “Only Tones” bears that out as expected: The National’s Matt Berninger and Rhett Miller of the Old 97’s guest—the rest of Butler’s band joins to play a few songs from their new album—but James Adomian is really the agent of chaos. First he appears as Men’s Wearhouse’s George Zimmer (who frequently sounds like Tom Leykis and even Jesse Ventura), but the character doesn’t go anywhere—well, besides down on the other guests. His Russell Crowe, who appears later, is far funnier with his hostile calm and confrontational dismissiveness. As Scott Aukerman tries to push Adomian away from his continual blow job sound effects, Adomian only escalates, which is both funny and tiresome. The episode still offers plenty of funny moments, though. [KR]

The Cracked Podcast #27: Why You Don’t Know What You Look Like
This week, Jack O’Brien convenes with writers Tom Reimann and Jason Pargin to discuss the disconnect between how we as individuals view ourselves versus how the world views us. As usual, Pargin dominates the conversation with his nuanced insights into human behavior and perception. It’s refreshing to hear some conversation about the motivations behind plastic-surgery addicts like Heidi Montag and Michael Jackson that doesn’t make them sound like sideshow attractions. There’s also an enlightening conversation about foreign health-care systems that pay for patients to undergo gender reassignment surgery. The conversation is just as interesting when it covers such mundane topics as why the zits and bad-hair days we as individuals stress over are largely unnoticed by others. [MS]

Doug Loves Movies: Greg Proops, Joe Swanberg, Rory Scovel, and Samm Levine
Part of the Doug Loves Movies listening experience involves tuning in to how invested Doug Benson’s audience gets into the format. First-time guest and filmmaker Joe Sawnberg learns this the hard way when he accidentally reads the shithead off the back of a name tag he receives at the top of the show. The audience lets out such a pained moan that if listeners didn’t know better, they’d assume that the each audience member was individually punched in the gut. Otherwise, Benson assembles another great panel, particularly when it comes to The Leonard Maltin Game. This edition of gets particularly heated when aggressive player Lil’ Wolverine finds himself in some tight strategic spots. [MS]

Filmspotting #483: Noah / Top 5 Movie Boats
Like the God of the Old Testament, the two hosts of this week’s Filmspotting showed mercy to their audience and chose not to commemorate the theatrical release of Darren Aronofsky’s Noah by counting down their top five lists of Biblical epics—nor prehistory tales, nor morality plays, nor performances by Russell Crowe’s facial hair. Instead, they chose to discuss narratives that play out on the contained and fragile safe havens of boats. The subject must recall a bygone era, because the majority of Josh Larsen and Michael Phillip’s choices—which include Sergei Eisenstein’s Battleship Potemkin and Preston Sturges’ The Lady Eve—were filmed decades before either man was born. Although, it’s a safe bet that plenty of listeners groaned when Phillips put a certain unsinkable Academy Award-winning melodrama in his number five slot. [DD]

The Flop House #148: Gangster Squad
A combination of absurdity and silliness is the lifeblood of The Flop House, and the hosts are exacting in their ability to find instances of both in most every bad film they watch. While no rational person expected Bratz or Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter to be anything but silly, Gangster Squad stood a chance at turning out to be a good film considering all of the talent involved. There is almost something singularly absurd, then, that it was so unbelievably bad, and listeners can’t help but wonder how, exactly, it came to be so, with its baffling directorial choices and inexplicable fixation on the injuring of hands. This is the sort of absurdity that the Flop House hosts revel in, and with Gangster Squad that reveling results in one of their finest hours yet. [CG]

Freakonomics: Why Everybody Who Doesn’t Hate Bitcoin Loves It
Most people with an interest in economics have read something about Bitcoin in the past couple of years. The online currency has earned vocal champions and detractors since its inception, and this week’s episode dives into the debate, explaining Bitcoin and why people love or hate it so much. For computer scientists, Bitcoin solves a particular problem: How can you establish trust on the Internet (i.e., among people who’ve never met one another but need to make transactions)? Right now, banks and companies like Paypal are middlemen to those transactions, but Bitcoin eliminates the need for those, making transactions faster and cheaper. Bitcoins can also be tagged for specific uses, so that they can only pay for what its owner wants it to pay for (like food or charity). Host Stephen Dubner seems more pro-Bitcoin than con, but he does rightfully stress that predicting the future of this currency is a fool’s errand. [NC]

Hang Up And Listen: The Silver’s Mettle Edition
When Grantland launched in 2011, it was immediately criticized for its weaknesses and derided for silly and pompous analysis at the intersection of sports and pop culture. Now Nate Silver’s ESPN offshoot FiveThirtyEight is going through the same troubles, bombarded by takedowns of its format, mission statement, and initial stories. The HUAL panel at least waited a week to prey on the new site, offering reasonable critiques while noting that, just like Grantland, it will most likely improve significantly over time. The recap of the first weekend in the NCAA tournament is immediately dated, but the third segment on Major League Baseball’s attempt to globalize the sport to match up with the NBA is another insightful look into American professional sports ravenously seeking new revenue streams. [KM]

Harmontown #96: Swan Of Durg-A-Durg
After the 826LA benefit, this recording of Harmontown is significant for two reasons. First, Dan Harmon invites an actual psychologist onstage to talk about what she does when a new patient seeks her out, and what warning signs—however innocuous—point to a need for therapy. It’s a lot of Harmon’s introspection about his insecurities played out in a public forum—which is what some may say he’s been doing with Community since it debuted. The second notable event is Erin McGathy trying her hand at being the Dungeon Master during D&D. That doesn’t go so well, but it’s entertaining enough not to derail the episode. [KM]

How Was Your Week #160: Tiffany Haddish “God”
For her last week in L.A., Julie Klausner gives up the comparisons with New York and focuses on the strange particularities of life in Southern California—to spectacular effect, especially in a hilarious description of visiting the Magic Castle. The second half of the long monologue drags a bit, but a wonderful interview with comedian Tiffany Haddish more than makes up for it. Haddish dominates the conversation, surprising Klausner with news of her divorce, relating anecdotes about Arsenio Hall, and telling a very funny, very explicit story about a yeast infection. [AH]

Improv4Humans #126: Their Name Is Korn: David Bazan, Brian Huskey, Horatio Sanz, John Gemberling, Michael Delaney
There were mixed results the last time Improv4Humans used a musician as the sole inspiration throughout an episode. This time around, the affecting music of singer-songwriter David Bazan lends itself perfectly to the show’s tone. The songs are straightforward enough for the improvisers to take hold of a central idea from their first listen, which means listeners unfamiliar with Bazan’s work are able to do the same. “Their Name Is Korn” has a stacked roster of veteran improvisers, with Horatio Sanz, Childrens Hospital’s Brian Huskey, Broad City’s John Gemberling, and UCB all-star Michael Delaney. Huskey and Gemberling pull the most weight of the guests, but the week’s top honor belongs to Besser after he takes an otherwise cl scene ripe for closure into the fantastical lost city of Atlantis. Such unexpected moments like that make Improv4Humans a must-hear week after week. [MK]

Judge John Hodgman #153: God Save The Teen
Teenage anglophile Callum wants to forsake Wisconsin and attend university in the UK. His older brother, Will, says he should just stay home, where everything is not only less alien, but less expensive. Monty Python fans and Whovians will enjoy the lengthy validation of their cultural orientation, and those sympathetic to the plaintiff will appreciate Hodgman’s reasonable ruling (if they stay tuned for the entire hour). The xenophilia theme continues with a ruling on a theoretical American version of the British telly phenomenon QI, and Hodgman closes with a brief hearing on a case a wife brings against her husband, who insists on treating strangers to the same prop-magic gag everywhere they go. [DXF]

The Mental Illness Happy Hour #162: Monica Little
Few shows have the potential to be more thoroughly engrossing than when Paul Gilmartin connects with his guest on The Mental Illness Happy Hour. That connection is clear from the beginning of Gilmartin’s talk with chef Monica Little, who tells the host about being sexually abused as a child, her struggles with intimacy, anxiety, and the difficulty of being a mother. It’s the kind of MIHH episode that covers a lot of ground, but doesn’t sacrifice depth in service of detailing each chapter of the guest’s life. Little sounds more relaxed than most of the non-entertainer guests who appear on the show, even while being completely vulnerable and honest about her darkest moments and ongoing battles. MIHH lacks the mass appeal of a show that can serve as background noise, but episodes like this are worth the time and emotional energy. [TC] 

The Moth: Millionaire Hot Seat, Monkey, Assassin
The Moth is all about representing voices from different walks of life, so it’s no wonder that international episodes are some of the most satisfying. This week’s full hour comes entirely from Australia, and the different regional colloquialisms (Catherine Burns does a short vernacular “cheat sheet” interview with comic Magda Szubanski) add an extra layer of authenticity to the whole thing. In a sobering story that sheds light on Aboriginal heritage, author Melissa Lucashenko chronicles her family’s move from an Aboriginal paradise to an impoverished neighborhood following a divorce. Szubanski opens up about her father’s icy but necessary emotional reservations, and in this week’s funniest, most heart-tugging story, Paul Carter talks about his odd but sort of perfect friendship with a monkey aboard an oil rig. [DJ] 

Nerdist #496: Arnold Schwarzenegger
It’s a major coup for a podcast that calls itself “Nerdist” to book the actual Terminator as a guest. Plus, any guest who has the credentials “blockbuster action star” and/or “former Governor of California” on his résumé is clearly a get. Sure, Chris Hardwick played a small role in the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie Terminator 3: Rise Of The Machines, but still, it’s a big deal. What’s also noteworthy is how well Schwarzenegger takes to the loose, open-ended podcast format. He seems more than willing to talk at length about any aspect of his career, particularly his struggle to be taken seriously as an actor and leading man. Fortunately, the conversation focuses more on Schwarzenegger’s film career than his politics, but his discussion of how his entrepreneurial spirit led to him acquiring financial independence before his acting career took off provides insight into his conservatism. [MS]

Nerdist #497: Jonah Keri
Chris Hardwick is fairly open about his indifference toward sports, which makes him a fascinating interviewer for sports journalist Jonah Keri. Thankfully, the Grantland writer turns out to be a big Nerdist fan, and he and Hardwick are able to find some common ground about what it means to be a fan—even if they direct their fanaticism toward different things. Keri is a self-proclaimed extrovert, and he seems entirely comfortable whether chatting about media platforms with Hardwick or discussing the Red Sox with Matt Mira. Rather than delve into the specifics of any one game, the trio discusses sports as a whole; the episode touches on everything from the emotional to the financial side the industry without feeling (pun intended) too inside baseball. Hardwick smartly asks broad questions—such as what draws fans to specific sports teams—which keeps the sports-centric conversation accessible. [CS]

Nerdist #498: Hannibal Buress
Comedian Hannibal Buress has the uncanny ability to make even the most mundane stories hilarious through his deadpan delivery. That skill serves him well on Nerdist as he’s able to transform a fairly standard chat about comedy into something much more entertaining. As befits Buress’ observational style, the conversation at first jumps all over the place—from Buress’ paranoia when he smokes pot to his weird interactions with fans at comedy clubs. He also shares a particularly funny story about getting a haircut at a black barbershop with a penchant for nerd culture. As he does with most stand-ups, Chris Hardwick keeps the conversation fairly comedy-focused, which gives Buress a chance to talk about his process. While his low-key performance style sometimes makes his act feel thrown together, this in-depth chat reveals just how much thought and effort he actually puts into his “effortless” performances. [CS]

Never Not Funny #1408: Matt Braunger
Everyone’s on thin ice this week with Jimmy Pardo: Eliot Hochberg (naturally), Garon Cockrell, Matt Belknap, even tardy guest Matt Braunger. Well, Hochberg more than the others (again, naturally), but Pardo’s faux (or mostly faux) ire finds multiple targets in this episode. Once comedian Braunger arrives, there’s a good bit of business, as Pardo would say, about a child mocking Braunger’s jowls, Pardo’s real-life Hangover experience, and weird people at health clubs. Braunger’s quite funny, making for another solid episode. [KR]

99 Percent Invisible #107 Call Now
Everyone’s seen lawyer commercials on late-night TV, but 99 Percent Invisible does the unthinkable this week and actually takes those ads seriously. Reporter Sean Cole dives into whether the commercials “work,” who they’re ostensibly for, and the 1976 Supreme Court case that made legal advertisements like these, well, legal. As 99PI interestingly explains, there’s an arcane network of laws regulating each state’s ads, meaning that while Tennessee solicitors can use talking cars to look for personal-injury plaintiffs, Florida lawyers have to be able to prove that, if they call themselves “The Hammer,” that they can actually “hammer” defendants. (There are at least three lawyers making commercials that call themselves “The Hammer,” by the way.) It’s a fascinating topic, and one that’s perhaps better served by watching the commercials on the 99PI page, but Cole does an interesting job investigating that world all the same. [ME]

Sound Opinions #435: The Allman Brothers Band Legacy
Anyone who ever picked up a subscription to RollingStone or had a mild obsession with the stories that inspired Cameron Crowe’s Almost Famous can glean the vaunted status of the Allman Brothers Band in the history of rock music. Although not as overtly influential in modern music as the band was a few decades ago, there’s still plenty of intricately outrageous history to parse. Alan Paul, a senior writer at Guitar World and author of the Allman biography One Way Out, offers the same expertise as the episode on The Beatles a few months ago. This is only an integral music history lesson for a very specific type of rock fan, but it’s a great one. [KM]

Stuff You Missed In History Class: Elizabeth Blackwell, America’s First Female M.D.
Tracy V. Wilson and Holly Frey have found a particularly compelling case in Elizabeth Blackwell, who in 1849 not only became the first woman to graduate from medical school in America, but was reluctant to become one. As a child, Blackwell had diverse dreams about music and language, but never medicine. As an adult, she resisted coming into contact with human bodies in marriage or in medicine, but felt compelled to reclaim the phrase “female physician,” which in the 1800s had become synonymous with abortionists. Blackwell’s diverse education and desire to elevate women’s place in society that make her character so enjoyable. Blackwell was even encouraged by supposedly sympathetic male colleagues to disguise herself as a man for the rest of her life in order to continue her studies. Thankfully history benefits from Blackwell’s ability to write about her own career, as well as Frey and Wilson’s perspective on it. [DT]

Stuff You Should Know: How Amnesia Works
As mysterious as it is compelling, amnesia actually encompasses a variety of diseases and disorders that include anterograde (not being able to form new memories after a trauma) and retrograde (not being able to access a bank of memories). Musician Clive Wearing famously suffers from both, and he’s Clark and Bryant’s gateway into discussing the science and human elements of the disease. Despite the potential for melancholy in such stories, Clark and Bryant keep things light. Their signature tangents also serve the science, including Bryant’s suggestion that different people’s neural pathways might perceive Clark’s silent gas differently. But the episode is also nearly twice as long as most, and stories like Wearing’s make the hour well worth the investment. [DT]

Welcome To Night Vale #43: Visitor
Cecil discovers an adorable little animal in his studio, with “really large duck eyes” and “puffy fur like a bear cub,” but without “discernable arms or legs.” At first, Cecil coos over the little thing, while he provides an update on the mayoral race between The Faceless Old Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home and Hiram the five-headed dragon. But then the little guy bites him, and begins to terrorize the station with its increasingly violent tendencies. It all ties back to this episode’s sponsor, revealing the creature’s mysterious origin and temperament. It’s another gloomy and hilarious episode full of little asides about auditions for the community production of Into The Woods—don’t forget to bring night-vision goggles—and the opening of a new buzzed-about restaurant called Tourniquet. [KM]

Who Charted? #173: Doughnut Agree 
Although Kulap Vilaysack is essentially irreplaceable as Who Charted? co-host, comedian April Richardson does a more than competent job filling in. Sure, she’s more deadpan than the excitable, bubbly, and giggly Vilaysack, but she’s also a longtime friend of Howard Kremer and navigates his kooky non-sequiturs with poise. Frankly, listening to Richardson and Kremer interact is enough for an episode on its own, but guest Mike Lawrence comes armed with stories of interacting with crotchety customers during his days as a disgruntled McDonald’s employee (as if there’s any other kind). Plus, Kremer’s childish, dead-end conversation game “Jaws Is Better” is really evolving into something special, and it now has its own theme song. [MS]

WTF #481: Dan Vitale
Dan Vitale’s lack of name recognition is sad, considering he was briefly a cast member of SNL (for a season in the mid-’80s with Joan Cusack and Robert Downey Jr.) and he had a significant role in an unproduced pilot helmed by Lorne Michaels. But it makes more sense after all the self-destructive and self-defeating stories he tells Marc Maron about his life and career. It’s a shame he didn’t achieve greater success, too, because throughout the interview he comes off as immensely funny and endearing, but maybe he will take Maron’s lead and swing some substantial late-career success. [CG]

You Made It Weird #200 Live From SXSW 2014
Like any live episode of You Made It Weird, this one from SXSW has pluses and minuses. On the one hand, it’s lovely to hear Pete Holmes in his natural onstage environment, rapid-fire riffing a with a coterie of well-matched guests (in this case, Thomas Middleditch, Jim Breuer, Matt Braunger, Nicole Byer, and Andy Haynes). On the other, it lacks the intimacy and naked earnestness of the one-on-one studio conversations. But these live shows only happen occasionally, so who cares? It’s a lot of fun. Highlights include Breuer’s recounting of his surreal heart-to-heart with the sagely Bill Cosby and Byer’s tale of drunken, fence-climbing shirtlessness. [DD]


Book Fight! Writers Ask: Baby Detective
This episode advises those poor souls who have the desire, time, and opportunity to write, but aren’t working on anything in particular. The solution: “Free-associate for short bursts of time.” The hosts’ musing on the logistics of a Freaky Friday-style swap is fun, but a recurring bit about denim diapers goes on far too long. [ABa]

The Fogelnest Files #83: Go To Rhino Records: Harold Bronson
Jake Fogelnest’s interview with Rhino Records co-founder Harold Bronson starts off compelling, but Fogelnest’s enthusiasm for very specific origin stories eventually weighs the episode down. [ABe]

Professor Blastoff #148 Adoption: Peter Spuryt
The Professor Blastoff crew faces an insurmountable handicap as an adoptive parent waxes anecdotal about his experience. Try as the hosts might, the result is as middle of the road as the program has been in some time. [NJ]

Sklarbro Country #192: How I Met You Brothers: Josh Radner, Jason Nash
Josh Radnor stops by to talk all things How I Met Your Mother. He’s game and pleasant enough on his second visit, but the conversation gets a little bogged down in promotional talk for the series finale. [DJ]  

Stuff You Should Know: How Landslides Work
There’s interesting science that might make the episode worth a listen, such as the fact that lava can travel 450 miles per hour, but the surprising moments are few and far between. [DT]

WTF #482: Jason Isbell
Inspired spur-of-the-moment by a show Marc Maron did with former Drive-By Truckers guitarist Jason Isbell, this interview is part harrowing addiction story and part gushing music fandom. Maron can hit both notes well, but this episode doesn’t have much appeal for less-than diehard Isbell fans. [KM]

WTF #483: Patterson Hood
Marc Maron’s interviews divide nicely into current comedians/actors, comedy legends, and musicians (because Maron really likes music). That’s not to say this episode with Drive-By Truckers frontman Patterson Hood isn’t worthwhile. It’s just solidly in the least compelling category of WTF episodes, even as it attempts to map the history of southern rock. [KM]