The notorious wave pool at Action Park in Vernon, NJ.
Gobbledygeek episode 413, “Action Park: Everything Is Legal in New Jersey,” is available for listening or download right here and on Apple Podcasts here.
As Hamilton taught us, everything is legal in New Jersey. So we shouldn’t be surprised that it was once home to Action Park, the most dangerous amusement park in the world. Eugene Mulvihill’s vision of a lawless hellscape with pleasure as its only principle is the American Dream in miniature, with a guest appearance by Donald Trump himself! Paul and Arlo discuss the new HBO Max documentary Class Action Park, which brought the Mulvihill legend to their attention; some ancillary material available on YouTube, including one insane post-credits sequence; how Paul would love to bean somebody with a flaming tennis ball; and their respective childhoods, one as a latchkey kid in the ‘70s/’80s and one as a cowardly nerd in the ‘90s/’00s. Will they emerge unscathed? Tune in and find out!
Next: another episode of your favorite podcast. No, not that one. This one. Wait. Come back.
Total Run Time: 01:24:00
- 00:00:30 – Intro / Main Topic
- 01:21:07 – Outro / Next
- Action Park commercial (1983)
- “Don’t Talk to Strangers” by The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Turtle Tunes (1994)
Original art ‘Sam-Chan’ by CrispyToastYT.
Gobbledygeek episode 401, “Texed,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
We’re all responding to quarantine (semi- or otherwise) in different ways. Paul seems to be practicing some sort of immersion therapy, living out the post-apocalypse in games like The Last of Us and shows like The Leftovers. Arlo, meanwhile, reaches for the comfort of old reliable favorites like the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie or the modern classic sketch comedy series Key and Peele. Have you ever realized they’re different people? The boys discuss texting syntax, Paul’s genuine repulsion at a certain aspect of The Leftovers, Arlo’s journey through old superhero comics, and so much (or at least a little) more.
Next: TBD, as per ush.
Total Run Time: 01:58:01
- 00:00:27 – Intro
- 01:55:00 – Outro / Next
- “Gunfight Epiphany” by Robert Duncan, Gunfight Epiphany (Theme from Terriers) (2010)
- “Let the Mystery Be” by Iris DeMent, Infamous Angel (1992)
Regina King in HBO’s ‘Watchmen’ (2019).
Gobbledygeek episode 396, “FCF Bonus: HBO’s Watchmen (feat. Greg Sahadachny),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
No one, especially not Alan Moore, ever really wanted a Watchmen sequel. Which is exactly why handing the reins to Damon Lindelof, who has a history of disorienting and upsetting expectations, is a stroke of genius. Last year’s HBO series, spearheaded by Lindelof, is a bold, startling continuation of Moore and Dave Gibbons’ graphic novel masterpiece–so of course, after talking about the book, Paul, Arlo, and reformed podcaster Greg Sahadachny had to discuss the TV show. The gang talks about the ways in which Lindelof subverts and pays tribute to Moore and Gibbons’ work; how Lindelof built a writers’ room with people who were not like him; the show’s provocative exploration of race and authority; whether or not the show sticks the landing; and much, much more.
Next: due to one scheduling kerfuffle after another, we’ve got another Four-Color Flashback for you! Paul and Arlo will discuss Jeff Lemire and Dean Ormston’s Black Hammer.
Total Run Time: 02:32:50
- 00:00:30 – Intro
- 00:05:40 – Sturgill Simpson’s A Good Look’n Tour
- 00:28:28 – Watchmen
- 02:28:25 – Outro / Next
- “Turtles All the Way Down” by Sturgill Simpson, Turtles All the Way Down (2014)
- “Best Clockmaker On Mars” by Sturgill Simpson, Sound & Fury (2019)
- “The Case for Reparations” by Ta-Nahesi Coates, The Atlantic
- “Watchmen Gave Us All the Answers” by Kathryn VanArendonk, Variety
- “HBO’s Watchmen Captures the Spirit of the Graphic Novel Better Than Anything Else” by Princess Weekes, The Mary Sue
- “The Real Black History Hidden Within HBO’s Watchmen” by Karama Horne, SyFy Wire
- “The Incendiary Aims of HBO’s Watchmen” by Emily Nussbaum, New Yorker
- “Stephen Williams goes behind the scenes of the emotionally devastating and technically dazzling ‘This Extraordinary Being.’” by Joanna Robinson, Vanity Fair
- “How ‘Watchmen’ Pulled Off One of the Best TV Seasons of the Decade” by Adam B. Vary, Variety
- “Olivia Hooker, one of the last survivors of the 1921 Tulsa race massacre, dies at 103” by Deneen L. Brown, Los Angeles Times
- “Following Watchmen, 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Added to Oklahoma Curriculum” by Adreon Patterson, CBR
- The Official Watchmen Podcast – website – iTunes
A Shakey’s Pizza in the wild.
Gobbledygeek episode 390, “Freegobble: Return to InfoPrison,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Ever have a job so shitty, it haunts you years (or even decades) down the line? Paul and Arlo have, and it’s called Gobbledygeek! Hey-o! In all seriousness (?), Paul recounts a traumatic experience at Shakey’s Pizza and Arlo is filled with regret over his time at the right-wing call center InfoCision. Cue flashbacks to high school football teams ravenous for wings and evil televangelists separating the faithful from what little coin they carry. Speaking of the latter, Arlo laments Kanye West’s evangelical turn on Jesus Is King. Elsewhere, Paul watches TV, including Succession, Primal, Daybreak, Watchmen, and Modern Love; and braves crowds of drunken revelers at shows for Bastille, Joywave, Trampled by Turtles, and The Avett Bros.
Total Run Time: 01:39:58
- 00:00:33 – Intro
- 00:01:12 – We are NOT sponsored by the Gobble meal delivery service
- 00:07:30 – Cold pizza and really, really hot wings
- 00:14:43 – Way too much about InfoCision
- 00:43:48 – Not nearly enough about some great new TV shows
- 00:54:08 – More than a little bit about Succession
- 01:07:20 – Unfortunately, we discuss the new Kanye album
- 01:15:30 – A Popeye’s chicken sandwich interlude
- 01:17:15 – Back to Kanye (and controversial comments on Beyoncé)
- 01:24:31 – Lastly, Paul’s been to some concerts
- 01:37:05 – Outro / Next
- “This Fucking Job” by Drive-By Truckers, The Big To-Do (2010)
- “Blastoffff” by Joywave, Blastoffff (Single) (2018)
He only looks innocent.
Gobbledygeek episode 378, “The Dog Ate My Sleep,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
We’re tired. So tired. That’s what you want to hear when you’re about to fire up a podcast, right? You are reading this, aren’t you? Buried among such illuminating subjects as the coffee Arlo’s drinking, Paul’s underhanded behind-the-scenes manipulations, and the boys’ general unprofessionalism, there is indeed some pop culture palaver and parley. The boys are digging HBO’s troubled teens drama Euphoria despite being approximately 400 years too old to say things like “that’s a mood”; Arlo is losing faith in The Handmaid’s Tale; Paul remembers Yesterday; and they both are in awe of Toy Story 4 being so much more than a cynical cash-grab.
Next: Toby Maguire now vanquished, Jake Gyllenhaal finally makes his way into a Spider-Man movie, donning a fishbowl for Spider-Man: Far From Home.
(Show notes for “The Dog Ate My Sleep.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 314, “Wonder Woman: Amazon Prime (feat. Hallie Prime),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
This week, the lasso of truth compels Paul and Arlo to tell you all about their thoughts on Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman, the fourth film in the DC Extended Universe and the first major female-led superhero movie since freaking Elektra. Joining them on this Themysciran horseback ride is friend of the show Hallie Prime. The gang discusses Gal Gadot’s note-perfect performance, Chris Pine’s frighteningly large eyebrows, whether or not the film’s villains live up to its hero, and if there’s still hope for the DCEU yet. Plus, Arlo gets all evangelical about The Leftovers.
Next: after a week off, Paul and Arlo will take a look at The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford ten years on.
(Show notes for “Wonder Woman: Amazon Prime.”)
Gobbledygeek episode 311, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2: Those Who Dance, and Those Who Do Not,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Family is family, no matter how much they might piss you off. It’s fitting that while the ragtag band of losers at the heart of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 learn this lesson, Paul and Arlo are relearning it. That’s right, kids, the boys’ miraculous and unprecedented string of agreements is over: Paul is tail over paws in love with Vol. 2, while Arlo rides the good ship Kelly McGillis into a sea of disappointment. Are the film’s various character pairings emotionally satisfying? Does Vol. 2 merely rehash everything you loved about the first? Is Michael Rooker a goddamn gift to humanity/Centauriankind? Plus, Paul mind-melds with Sense8 season 2, and Arlo wants to believe with The Leftovers season 3.
Next: after a week off, Ensley F. Guffey will join the boys for the next installment in their (woefully unappreciated) Four-Color Flashback exploring Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man. This time, they’ll slip on the Ring of Truth for Y: The Last Man – Vol. 5.
(Show notes for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2: Those Who Dance, and Those Who Do Not.”)
Listen to Gobbledygeek episode 305, “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 3: One Small Step (feat. Kenn Edwards),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Hallelujah, it’s raining men! As Yorick Brown discovers he may not be the last man in the universe thanks to a space shuttle carrying two others, Paul and Arlo invite Kenn Edwards to join them on their year-long Four-Color Flashback discussion of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man. With Vol. 3: One Small Step, the gang discusses the book’s self-referential devices, the prominence of fiction as a theme, and how Yorick’s progression from boy to man is coming along. There’s also talk of guest artist Paul Chadwick, who fills in for Guerra on the two-issue departure “Comedy & Tragedy”; depending on who you ask, the story is either a Gaiman-esque delight or the height of masturbatory self-indulgence. Fun times! Plus, Arlo and Kenn discuss Dave Chappelle’s new Netflix specials, Jerrod Carmichael’s 8, and, you know, the role of comedy in modern society. Meanwhile, Paul twiddles his thumbs.
Next: throw out your meds, drop the needle on The Dark Side of the Moon, and get ready for a discussion of Noah Hawley’s brain-breaking FX/Marvel TV series Legion.
(Show notes for “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 3: One Small Step.”)
Last week, we brought you our favorite movies of last year (finally saw Inside Llewyn Davis, by the way, and yes, it would have made the cut). This week, we change channels to focus on TV. We’re doing things a little differently this time out, with separate top 10 lists for new shows and returning favorites. Though there were a lot of new shows I enjoyed over the past year, I’ll admit I couldn’t stretch them to 10; instead, I’ve got 8, while Paul’s just crazy enough to have a full 10.
As always, there are shows we couldn’t get around to: I haven’t seen Rectify, Top of the Lake, Broadchurch, or The Wrong Mans, all of which I’d hoped to see in time for this list. Oh, and to absolve him of all guilt, I should mention that Paul has never seen Breaking Bad. Wait, I don’t think that absolves him.
PAUL: 10. HANNIBAL (NBC)
I wasn’t particularly interested in a television adaptation of the Thomas Harris characters. But names like Hugh Dancy, Mads Mikkelsen, and Bryan Fuller pulled me in. It’s one of the most visually stunning and hauntingly…haunting shows ever to make it to network television. It’s also one of the most shockingly violent and grotesque. All positives in my book. But I can’t put it any higher on my list because it’s crushingly depressing.
On this, the eve of 2013, Paul and I begin to look back at some of our favorite things of 2012. First up, our ten favorite TV series.
Also, let’s give a slow clap to Paul, who struggled through severe illness just to get these words to you, dear reader. A speedy recovery to you, sir!
PAUL: 10. PARKS AND RECREATION (NBC)
Season 5 gets out of the office a little bit, with Ben and April in Washington D.C. (with an evil robot congressman). Ron gets a new love interest (the always lovely Lucy Lawless). Tom starts a new business. And Andy finds a new career.
AJ: 10. GAME OF THRONES (HBO)
What Game of Thrones did in its first season was nothing short of exceptional, a 10-episode narrative that goes down as one of the finest accomplishments the medium has seen thus far. And while the second season struggled at times to recapture that majesty, it certainly wasn’t for lack of trying. The scope and breadth of George R.R. Martin’s world remains impressive; the cast, especially Peter Dinklage as the kind of noble imp Tyrion Lannister, continues to knock out high fantasy material that would crush lesser actors; and thrilling hours like “Blackwater” remind us that this is the closest thing we have to a Lord of the Rings on TV. And it’s a whole lot nastier and sexier, too.