I didn’t mean to do two, semi-related podcasts in a row. While How Did This Get Made? (HDTGM) is quite different to Hollywood Babble-On (shameless plug), they are both heavy on movies. However, HDTGM focuses on one movie, which is examined, dissected, and reviewed. The kick is, the name of the podcast is the theme. It doesn’t so much insist they aren’t entertaining, it more so points out the absurdity.
The three main hosts are all interconnected (whether professionally or personally), and their history and backgrounds in improv shine through for an entertaining, and sometimes down right hilarious, podcast. There is a fine line between mocking and reviewing with the content matter they chose, and they tackle it well.
This one is pretty straight forward, and also has some listener interaction. They watch a movie which might not be exactly worthy of any awards, except a Razzie maybe. They tweet it out ahead of time, so the listener also has time to watch, which makes it easier to follow. They really give the movie a chance though, and break it down how you would any movie, which is where a lot of the humor stems from, questioning how the involved parties came to the conclusions they did.
The main podcast, where they breakdown a movie, occurs every two weeks, with a “Prequel” episode in between. I first thought this wasn’t enough, however, I have found its perfect. You don’t get saturated, and find yourself pleasantly surprised when you realize you’ll have a new one for a trip or gym visit. The Prequels are hit or miss, and are one of the hosts reading listener emails, going over corrections, or anything they missed.
Each movie breakdown episode usually features a guest to go along with the three main hosts: Paul Scheer, June Diane Raphael, and Jason Mantzoukas. They mix in lives shows every now and then, however, I don’t feel like it adds nor subtracts anything from the show. Also, if one of the main hosts is out, they are supplemented with an extra guest host, but it still works fairly well.
I don’t think I have ever heard one where the guest brought down the show. They can range from lesser known (mainstream wise) comedians, to big name actors (Anna Faris), and even the makers of the movies they skewer (Brian Taylor, Writer/Director of Gamer and Crank). They will also have an occasional bonus episode, which features a one-on-one interview, with the likes of Taylor.
As mentioned the three hosts work well together, and have diverse backgrounds of acting, writing and directing: Paul Scheer (The League, Human Giant), Jason Mantzoukas (The League, The Dictator), and June Diane Raphael (Anchorman 2, Grace and Frankie). All three have much larger credits than what I listed, and very diverse in terms of acting, writing, and producing. Paul and June are married, and both have worked with Jason a lot, so the chemistry is very good, and they work really well together.
The real strength is their improv though. All three have backgrounds in it, so the show’s foundation is making jokes on the fly, based off of what each other and the guest says. It makes the show feel fresh, unique, and genuinely funny. They will also take questions at a live show, which gives them more ammo which is never a bad thing.
You have to really be into movies, and movie making, because they go deep into movies. I would argue they have one of the best research teams of any podcast, in any topic. They always have clips, notes, and even stories from the set, or interviews from those involved, allowing you a deeper insight into the though behind some very questionable movies. With the humor, frequency, and pure enjoyment, I highly recommend this for movie lovers, or people just looking for a different type of comedic podcast.