Listen to Episode 442 – “Geek Challenge: Sunset Blvd. vs. My Favorite Year”

Top: William Holden and Norma Desmond in Billy Wilder’s ‘Sunset Blvd.’ (1950) / Bottom: Peter O’Toole and Mark Linn-Baker in Richard Benjamin’s ‘Final Year’ (1982)

Gobbledygeek episode 442, “Geek Challenge: Sunset Blvd. vs. My Favorite Year,” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

For Norma Desmond, the pictures got small when words stole her mystique; for Alan Swann, it was when his drunken antics got him downgraded to the boob tube. They’re both stand-ins for larger-than-life stars past their prime, Norma in Billy Wilder’s scathing Sunset Blvd. (1950) and Alan in Richard Benjamin’s cozy My Favorite Year (1982). In our latest Geek Challenge, Paul and Arlo discuss these fallen idols and how their respective movies take much different approaches to a mentor/mentee relationship. The boys break down the ways in which both films echo real-life Hollywood legends; praise Gloria Swanson’s arch turn as Norma and Peter O’Toole’s thinly veiled take on Errol Flynn; pine for dead monkey funerals; and wonder what things would be like if Jessica Harper ruled the mob.

NEXT: on this month’s Four-Color Flashback, we conclude the post-apocalyptic adventures of Gus and Jeppard in Deluxe Editions 2 and 3 of Jeff Lemire’s Sweet Tooth.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:40  –  Intro / Guest
  • 00:06:28  –  Sunset Blvd.
  • 00:52:15  –  My Favorite Year
  • 01:28:56  –  Outro / Next

LINKS

MUSIC

  • “Mama Said Knock You Out” by LL Cool J, Mama Said Knock You Out (1990)
  • “Celluloid Heroes” by The Kinks, Everybody’s in Show-Biz (1972)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 435 – “Who’s With Me? (feat. Austin Allan James)”

Ryan Sherrill in Who’s With Me? (2021), directed by Austin Allan James

Gobbledygeek episode 435, “Who’s With Me? (feat. Austin Allan James),” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

We’ve all been isolated, to some degree, for the last year. Austin Allan James’ debut feature Who’s With Me?, available for free on YouTube, perfectly captures the sense of loneliness and paranoia to which many of us have become accustomed. His film was also almost entirely finished pre-pandemic. Paul and Arlo talk with Austin about his clairvoyant powers, working on a shoestring budget, the inspiration he draws from filmmakers such as David Lynch and Joel Potrykus, how much of a fee turtles can demand, and what it all means, man.

NEXT: at long last, we go undercover with Wesley “Wezzo” Mead for a discussion of The Americans season 1.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:52  –  Intro / Guest
  • 00:04:40  –  Main Topic
  • 01:08:25  –  Outro / Next

LINKS

MUSIC

  • “Locked Inside” by Reef, Rides (1999)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 434 – “The Shorter Stick Up Arlo’s [Bleep]”

Kurt Russell in Escape from New York (1981), directed by John Carpenter

Gobbledygeek episode 434, “The Shorter Stick Up Arlo’s [Bleep],” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

This is a freestyle episode, so you better believe Paul and Arlo talk about all manner of goofy shit, but–there’s also kind of a topic too? Look, we make this stuff up as we go along, get that look off your face. Arlo watched John Carpenter’s 1981 cult classic Escape from New York for the very first time, and he absolutely loved it. He and Paul rave about the movie, its highly relatable cynicism, and its amazing music…which leads Arlo to proffer a shocking apology. The stick up his ass, it’s gotten a little shorter over the years. Plus, an in-depth breakdown of This Is Us’ timeline and an exploration of why roasts suck. Sponsored by the adult toy purveyor of your choice!

NEXT: indie filmmaker Austin Allan James joins us to discuss his debut feature, Who’s With Me?

MUSIC

  • “Escape from New York (Main Title)” by John Carpenter, Escape from New York (Original Film Soundtrack) (1981)
  • “Bandstand Boogie” by Les Elgart (1954)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 432 – “Two Crucifixes in the Logo”

Ned Flanders (voiced by Harry Shearer), by far the most likeable evangelical I’ve ever met, in ‘The Simpsons’ 4×19, “The Front” (1993)

Gobbledygeek episode 431, “WandaVision (feat. Michael Holland),” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

When we’re not contracting coronavirus, we’re contracting people to work on our houses. And sometimes those people, too, can be a plague. Paul and Arlo commiserate over uncomfortable contractor experiences, uncomfortable evangelicalism, and the uncomfortable intersection of those two very uncomfortable things. In other news, baby-faced Paul got his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and had to deal with some folks getting way too up in his personal space. Are we ready for a return to normal? No. No, we are not. Plus, we remember to talk pop culture and chat about the Oscar nominations.

NEXT: Paul decides on air during this very episode that next week will be this month’s Four-Color Flashback, discussing Vols. 1 & 2 of Daniel Warren Johnson’s Extremity.

MUSIC

  • “Comfort Eagle” by Cake, Comfort Eagle (2001)
  • “Burning Down the House” by Talking Heads, Speaking in Tongues (1982)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 430 – “FCF: American Vampire”

Art from American Vampire: Vol. 1 (2010) by Rafael Albuquerque and Dave McCaig

Gobbledygeek episode 429, “Geek Challenge: Wolf vs. The Insider,” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

What’s more American than ruthless bastards sucking dry the poor, hardworking souls that make this country what it is–all in the name of progress? We’re not just talking about capitalism here, we’re also talking about the bloodthirsty monsters at the heart of Scott Snyder and Rafael Albuquerque’s American Vampire. For this month’s Four-Color Flashback, Paul and Arlo sink their fangs into the first two volumes of Snyder and Albuquerque’s (with an assist from Stephen King) decades-spanning Vertigo series. The boys discuss how Snyder charts the path of American history through three distinct time periods; the seriously cool vampire taxonomy; Albuquerque’s ghastly, gorgeous art; the way King cusses; and, yes, what the book says about capitalist conquest. Plus, Paul chills with three very different Netflix projects: Moxie, Ginny & Georgia, and Behind Her Eyes.

NEXT: Michael Holland, post-production supervisor on American Horror Story and ABC’s For Life, joins us to discuss Disney+’s first MCU series, WandaVision.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:50  –  Intro
  • 00:07:14  –  American Vampire
  • 01:34:36  –  Outro / Next

MUSIC

  • “American Girl” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers (1977)
  • “Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and the Waves, Walking on Sunshine (1985) 

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 429 – “Geek Challenge: Wolf vs. The Insider”

Left: Christopher Plummer in Wolf (1994), directed by Mike Nichols / Right: Christopher Plummer in The Insider (1999), directed by Michael Mann

Gobbledygeek episode 429, “Geek Challenge: Wolf vs. The Insider,” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

In honor of the late Christopher Plummer, Paul and Arlo host a Geek Challenge with two films featuring one of Canada’s greatest. First, Paul has Arlo watch Mike Nichols’ 1994 horror (?) film Wolf, starring Jack Nicholson as a middle-aged book editor who finds the beast inside courtesy of a wolf bite (with a five-minute cameo from a scenery-chewing Plummer). Then, Arlo makes Paul watch Michael Mann’s 1999 ripped-from-the-headlines thriller The Insider, with Russell Crowe as a scientist taking on Big Tobacco, Al Pacino as the journalist trying to tell his story, and Plummer doing one hell of a job as Mike Wallace. Plus, Paul tries to get Arlo to watch Craig McCracken’s new animated series Kid Cosmic.

NEXT: the boys sharpen their fangs on a Four-Color Flashback discussion of the first two volumes of Scott Snyder, Stephen King, and Rafael Albuquerque’s American Vampire.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:55  –  Intro / Kid Cosmic
  • 00:10:29  –  Wolf
  • 00:55:45  –  The Insider
  • 01:49:45  –  Pointless tangent about the term “bucket list” (We’re sorry.)
  • 01:52:54  –  Outro / Next

MUSIC

  • “Wolf Like Me” by TV On The Radio, Return to Cookie Mountain (2006)
  • “Iguazu” by Gustavo Santoalalla, Ronroco (1998)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 428 – “FCF: Prince of Cats”

Art and dialogue from Prince of Cats (2012) by Ronald Wimberly

Gobbledygeek episode 428, “FCF: Prince of Cats,” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

Two hosts, unalike in dignity, in fair Gobbledygeek, where we set our podcast. For this month’s Four-Color Flashback, Paul and Arlo pull out a boombox blasting Romeo and Juliet side B. In Prince of Cats, Ronald Wimberly passes the mic to Juliet’s cousin Tybalt, a sideways entry point into the events that lead to and inform the soapy classic. Oh, and did we mention this version stars a Black cast living in an ‘80s NYC where everybody participates in an underground samurai swordfighting ring? The boys discuss Wimberly’s ingenious distortion of Shakespearean language; his manga-influenced art; how the book enriches (perhaps even improves upon?) the play; and what it means to tell this story from a race-conscious perspective.

NEXT: oh hey, it’s that Christopher Plummer Geek Challenge we promised. Mike Nichols’ Wolf and Michael Mann’s The Insider go head-to-head.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:48  –  Intro / Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet
  • 00:23:00  –  Prince of Cats
  • 01:03:45  –  (Interlude: Paul reads NSFW Shakespearean dialogue from Prince of Cats)
  • 01:55:08  –  Outro / Next

LINKS

MUSIC

  • “Step Off” by Grandmaster Melle-Mel & The Furious Five (1984)
  • “Sucker M.C.’s” by Run-DMC, Run-DMC (1983)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 427 – “Derek DelGaudio’s In & Of Itself (feat. Wesley Mead)”

Derek DelGaudio in In & Of Itself (2020), directed by Frank Oz

Gobbledygeek episode 427, “Derek DelGaudio’s In & Of Itself (feat. Wesley Mead),” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

I am a podcast. This week, Paul and Arlo are joined by Wesley Mead to unravel the mystery of Derek DelGaudio’s stage show In & Of Itself, now available on Hulu in a filmed version directed by none other than Frank Oz. Truth be told, if truth is a concept you believe in, the gang doesn’t do much unraveling. No, that would be beyond the point. Instead, they discuss how the show makes them feel and what it reveals about the relationship between one human being and another. Magic, wolves, self-identity, and the communal experience all make an appearance. Plus, Wezzo tells us how the UK is faring with lockdown, and Arlo raves about Merawi Gerima’s stunning feature debut Residue.

NEXT: I’ll meet you in another life, when we are both cats. This month’s Four-Color Flashback is all about Ronald Wimberly’s take on Romeo and Juliet, 2012’s Prince of Cats.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:55  –  Intro / Guest
  • 00:23:37  –  Derek DelGaudio’s In & Of Itself
  • 01:52:12  –  Outro / Next

LINKS

MUSIC

  • “Dog and Wolf” by Green Dolphin Street, Boozekilla (2017)
  • “I Am” by AWOLNATION, Run (2015)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 426 – “Geek Challenge: Hawk the Slayer vs. The Adventures of Robin Hood”

Top: Bernard Bresslaw, John Terry, Patricia Quinn, Ray Charleson, and W. Morgan Sheppard in Hawk the Slayer (1980), directed by Terry Marcel / Bottom: Herbert Mundin, Errol Flynn, and Alan Hale, Sr. in The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938), directed by Michael Curtiz

Gobbledygeek episode 426, “Geek Challenge: Hawk the Slayer vs. The Adventures of Robin Hood,” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

Ah, merry old England. A land of many fine tales as well as some pretty crummy ones. This week, Paul and Arlo explore both sides of English mythmaking in a Geek Challenge that hearkens back to the Middle Ages; i.e., the 1930s and 1980s. First up is a movie Paul has been trying to get Arlo to watch literally as long as they’ve been podcasting: Terry Marcel’s 1980 sword-and-sorcery epic (?) Hawk the Slayer, featuring John Terry and Jack Palance as improbable brothers warring over the power of the Mind Sword. In return, Arlo has Paul watch Michael Curtiz’s 1938 classic The Adventures of Robin Hood, starring Errol Flynn as the screen’s most iconic Robin. The boys discuss Hawk as Paul’s Rosetta stone; Robin Hood as one of those movies you just sort of absorb by osmosis; gloriously cheesy synth scores; Daffy Duck becoming a friar; and more. Plus, Jonathan Hickman’s X-Men!

NEXT: to celebrate the career of the late, great Christopher Plummer, we’re doing another Geek Challenge featuring Wolf and The Insider.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:30  –  Fade In / Intro
  • 00:06:34  –  Hawk the Slayer
  • 00:52:10  –  The Adventures of Robin Hood
  • 01:24:37  –  Outro / Next

LINKS

MUSIC

  • “Hawk the Slayer” by Harry Robertson, Hawk the Slayer (Original Soundtrack) (1980)
  • “Duel, Victory and Epilogue” by Erich Wolfgang Korngold, The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)

GOBBLEDYCARES

Listen to Gobbledygeek Episode 425 – “evermore (feat. Joseph Lewis)”

Taylor Swift in the music video for ‘willow’ (2020), directed by herself

Gobbledygeek episode 425, “evermore (feat. Joseph Lewis),” is available for listening or download right here, on Spotify, and on Apple Podcasts.

‘Tis the damn season. Last summer, we convened the Three Heathens–Paul, Arlo, and A/V writer-director Joseph Lewis–to discuss Taylor Swift’s first surprise album of 2020, Folklore. It was surprising not only for the nature of its release but for the folk pop/singer-songwriter shift it marked, becoming the finest achievement of Swift’s career. On her second surprise album of 2020, Evermore, she may have equaled that achievement. The Heathens are back to discuss the progression of Swift’s Joni Mitchell phase, as her lyrics become more reflective and complex. They’re strengthened by producer/co-writer Aaron Dessner’s sonic palette, introducing new sounds to Swift’s oeuvre. It’s true, the boys go a little off the rails into Lynch references, but one thing is undeniable: the more we say, the less you know. Plus, a discussion of the Disney+ making-of/concert film Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions.

NEXT: it’s Hawk the Slayer vs. The Adventures of Robin Hood in a Geek Challenge.

BREAKDOWN

  • 00:00:37  –  Intro / Guest
  • 00:03:40  –  Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions
  • 00:16:47  –  Evermore
  • 02:36:36  –  Outro / Next

LINKS

MUSIC

  • “Willow” by Taylor Swift, evermore (2020)
  • “Champagne Problems” by Taylor Swift, evermore (2020)
  • “‘Tis the Damn Season” by Taylor Swift, evermore (2020)
  • “Should’ve Said No” by Taylor Swift, Taylor Swift (2008)
  • “No Body, No Crime (feat. HAIM)” by Taylor Swift, evermore (2020)
  • “No Body, No Crime (The No Hugo, No Stiglitz Remix)” by Joe Lewis
  • “Coney Island (feat. The National)” by Taylor Swift, evermore (2020)
  • “Ivy” by Taylor Swift, evermore (2020)
  • “Cowboy Like Me” by Taylor Swift, evermore (2020)

GOBBLEDYCARES