Plunging into podcasts

I am a voracious media consumer.  Anyone who knows me, in real life or online, would not be shocked by this revelation.

While I enjoy music, I will choose a podcast over an album  any day of the week.  There’s something about listening to a conversation between two (or more) engaged people that really plugs into my brain specifically when it traces an artist’s process or journey.  I am fascinated by the creative process regardless of the medium and would much rather hear about it than the final product.  This preference may be peculiar but I have been exposed to things I would not have come across in another sphere.  Curiosity didn’t kill the cat, it feeds the brain.

Podcast Recommendations:

WTF podcast

While I can find comedian Marc Maron’s schtick a little bitter and self-centric for my taste, I do think he’s a superb interviewer.  There’s something about his frankness of his own mistakes that allow his guests to unleash, unwind and allow listeners to better understand them.  There are new podcast episodes every week.  Stay clear of the musician interviews (he’s too fangirly to keep them on track) but definitely check out his episodes with Dick van Dyke, Aubrey Plaza and others to dig a little deeper with people who excel at their craft.

Nerdist podcast

Host Chris Hardwick is all over the place like a smooth talking puppy on a sugar bender but this energy can result in some buzzy conversations. Sometimes it doesn’t.  It’s inconsistent and loopy which makes for a potluck of experiences twice a week.  I recently listened to his bizarrely random (and yet fascianting) discussion with Buffy’s Amber Benson, a delightfully sassy conversation with the luminescent Connie Britton (FNL) and a great one-to-one on comedic process with Tina Fey.  There seems to be a theme of female guests here…and I won’t apologise for it.

Firewall and Iceberg podcast

I am obsessed with American television and nothing quite hits the spot like the weekly melding of Alan Sepinwall and Dan Fienberg’s minds.  Television critics for HitFix they articulately breakdown TV with great insight into the history, process and creators of the form.  For those that are spoiler-phobic they mark their episodes according to subject matter so fragile minds cannot be broken.  I love their interplay  –  Alan’s occasional silliness and need to go for the obvious joke sometimes making Dan respond in grating terms – it’s a dynamic that works.


While nowhere near the great heights of his previous Creative Screenwriting Magazine podcast, host Jeff Goldsmith’s Q&A is a good (if inconsistently released) alternative.   Centred primarily around the screenwriters (and occasional directors) of independent and mainstream films, at its best it is a brilliant insight into the minds of those who write screenplays.  Goldsmith asks great questions always beginning with the all importnat ‘how did you start out?’ but the effectiveness of the episodes is always dependant on the screenwriter under the microscope.  My favourite will always be the 2010 Easy A’s Bert V Royal who is HILARIOUS and irreverent about writing Olive’s tale (serious, it’s brilliant).


I keep trying new film podcasts but /filmcast continues to dominate.  Regulars Dave, Devindra andAdam  have a great rapport and very different viewpoints on the medium.  They don’t position themselves as experts on the form, rather healthy appreciators of it and the many guises it comes in.  There is the same level of thought and excitement invested in a limited release independent title as there is a big, brainless blockbuster and I love them for it.  There are occasional female guest hosts, something they seem to be increasing of late, which I appreciate.

  • Length: approximately 60 mins
  • Link:
  • Newest episode: The Heat

I am always on the look out for podcasts I should be listening to.  You tell me, what am I missing out on and should rectify asap?



1 Comment

  1. I already enjoy some of these. Will have to try firewall & iceberg. One of my favourite podcasts is “Brad ‘n’ Laremy On Movies” as the name implies two guys Brad and Laremy discuss a lot of things movie related.

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