For the first time ever, fewer podcasts are safe than are up for elimination. Who blew the judges away, and who confused and bemused them? We're more than halfway done, so hold on tight as we finish up the search for Earwolf's next great podcast!
Episode 7.3 — Original Content: Day 3
Posted 24 August 2011 - 01:33 AM
To the judges: I have not listened to any of the 10 contestants' full episodes. Ever. Why is that important? I was not so lost with The F+, and I shared their frustration with the criticisms levied and how that conflicted directly with those of PFT. While I have differed in opinion over 'bottom 3' selection before, I think this is the first episode where I really felt like the wrong show was eliminated in the end.
To me, F+ was the best of the 3, though definitely not as strong as the top 2 (Left Handed Radio FTW!!!!). In fact, I genuinely believed Totally Laime was the weakest submission, and I felt the judges really nailed the right criticisms. I guess I just disagree with how important those criticisms were. To explain: In the end of the episode, Kulap went a bit self-deprecating and said she did "giggle commentary," which is absolutely true of Who Charted?. BUT, she always does so at the most appropriate times, and her giggling is often what finds the exact really funny essence amid Howard's amazing free-associating, which gives each moment the right amount of reflection to help the listener join in the laughter over concepts that would have been tragically glossed-over otherwise. It's probably one of my favorite characteristics of Who Charted?. Elizabeth Laime, on the other hand, bogged the clip down with giggling, and deflated so much of the funny potential. I think of the 5 clips, it was the only one where I never found myself actually laughing out loud.
I don't mean to sound so anti-Laime, and with the exception of these past 2 weeks, I always found it fair to call them a "front-runner," as they normally handle the challenges pretty well. I just feel like their submission this week was so egregious in its errors, while feeling that the ultimately-cut show suffered for a problem I never felt. But maybe that's why I'm not a judge, who knows? However, I do agree that B&D had a rightful close-call with elimination. I just feel F+ and TL should have body-switched for the results this week.
Finally, I wanna let Matt Besser know that he has been and continues to be one of my favorite (top 3, even!) working comedic talents. Just thought I'd dilute some of the hate I keep hearing about.
Posted 24 August 2011 - 01:38 AM
Like Matt said, the F Plus aren't the least funny show of the top 5, but they sure were the least suited to three minute clips.
Good luck lads and lasses of the F Plus. Onwards and upwards.
And what Jordan said near the end of the episode about how Bob & Dan are comedic reference machine guns made me consider that Bob & Dan are kind of like Jordan Jordan Go Faster. Or at least they were for their three and half minutes of this round. From the three or four full eps I've heard from them they let things breathe more most of the time.
Posted 24 August 2011 - 03:59 AM
Honestly I'm conflicted on F+. On one hand they have a solid concept down and they've showed over and over again that they have a LOT of material to go on. Having an hour of material is also much more indictive of the quality of the show than these 3 minute clips, so it's hard to compare.
On the other hand, as it has been said, is it just going to be them riffing on a sexual fetish for x minutes? Unless they bring something besides reading forum posts in funny voices, I don't know if I'll stick around. There's a reason why that kind of comedy is usually in written form and not read aloud with laughter along side it. They say that they go into discussions and the reasons behind it, but they've never really demonstrated that, have they? Why not use a 3 minute clip of them having a discussion on adult sissies instead of reading something weird off the internet and expect everyone to "get it"?
That said, Bob & Dan was by far the weakest of the bottom 3. I don't need more videogame references in my life and I sure as hell don't need them spouted out like a lightning round of "Catch that Reference".
Posted 24 August 2011 - 06:36 AM
The F Plus were submitting entries that were leaps and bounds ahead of what we heard from them the first week, but I think they just ran out of time to tinker with their format. Other than Television Zombies, I don't think any of the contestants worked harder to process and incorporate the judges' criticism. I hope they keep going and keep improving the podcast.
Bob & Dan were at the bottom again and I still don't understand why. Every week I hear the judges laughing during their clip but somehow it isn't enough. I understand that they don't have the power of a gimmick, but does that really matter in this context? Why are we judging marketability first?
I also acknowledge that Bob & Dan aren't everyone's taste-- The podcasts I listen to most are The Best Show and Pod F. Tompkast, which are based on extended, e-x-t-e-n-d-e-d riffing, so maybe this is just closer to what I like to hear. It's weird that everyone seized upon one fleeting reference to Earthworm Jim as being this big negative.
Posted 24 August 2011 - 06:56 AM
I think the Judges missed this one. While I am a listener and enjoyer of the Totally Laime Podcast, the past two weeks have been poor showings for Elizabeth and Andy. I didn't like that they threw a "plug" in at the end of their submission talking about being on the Challenge and welcoming their new listeners. I think they are coasting on their past performance but will only be able to do that for so long.
I agree with JW about Bob & Dan being enjoyable. They are like the bizzaro Totally Laime in that they are totally great to listen to but lack the name guests and ability to market themselves. I think Matt was correct earlier this week to get them thinking about their hook and I hope they figure it out because they make me laugh every week.
I was fine to see the F+ go. I like them but don't see myself able to listen week to week. I thought their 3 minute chunk was fine but was a little dismayed that it so closely mirrored their last couple submissions with the odd-sexual content. I get that there is a dearth of that type of content out there, but I would have liked to see them change it up a little more.
Another great week Earwolf Challenge. Thanks for the hard work contestants and judges!
Posted 24 August 2011 - 07:50 AM
Too bad for F+ ... I guess I can understand why some people like the podcast, but from the beginning, I just couldn't get into it. As some fans said yesterday, it may be easier to keep up and differentiate among all the different voices and nicknames and all that if you listen regularly. Having said that, there's a pretty high barrier to entry there that honestly keeps me out. It was made even more difficult for me to get into because of the audio quality. That weird, warbly "Skype-ness" makes it even harder to tell who's talking, and makes the inevitable "overtalking" all the more confusing. They did have a great attitude the whole time, and I have to say I really did appreciate all the work they did for the challenge.
TL better step it up and soon. The Dum Dums are really killing the "chat with guest" category right now, and TL would be hard-pressed to beat them one-on-one if it came down to that.
Bob and Dan are almost certain to be eliminated next week, unless they really kill the challenge. I personally love those guys, and they're one of two challenge entrants that I've added to my regular podcast rotation. I can understand why they're not for everyone, though. That rapid-fire pop culture reference and riff action could be a turn-off to people who don't share the same sensibilities.
Finally, I just love Jordan Morris. He was a great judge, bringing the funny but also being thoughtful and working through the notes and ideas for each contestant. He needs his own podcast, right now. Get rid of that dead Jesse weight, Jordan! Fly! Be free!
Posted 24 August 2011 - 11:19 AM
I have enjoyed the couple of full episodes of F Plus I've heard - especially when Besser's favourite, Bunnybread, is on the mic - but both of those eps featured fetish forums and gave me the creeps almost as much as they made me laugh. They're a funny show, but they're a little on the disturbing side to seem like a good fit at Earwolf, even moreso with their dodgy sound quality.
Bottom line though is that they submitted an entry which clearly confused all three judges. So did Bob & Dan. Totally Laime's was easy to follow.
Posted 24 August 2011 - 01:33 PM
I think the judges' conflicting critiques of the F+ (too much reading, throw in some commentary vs. too much commentary, can't tell when someone's talking or reading) and their struggle to offer up a good solution to marry the two was an interesting conundrum.
Listening to their clip, I too was confused. When they did role call at the beginning part of me thought they were just introducing themselves, but then I caught that waitaminute- they're casting the parts that will be read from the source material of the forum. Then when it started I did get confused as to when someone was reading and someone was commenting, especially because the thing being read wasn't one entry of text, but a dialogue between two people on a messageboard.
So to me, the solution would be to read it like either a read through of a script or a court document, where the character's name is stated before their dialogue is read, and maybe the whole thing is supervised by a narrator or director of sorts for the scene. That way the director can start and stop the action and give way for people to leave comments in those pauses. (at least for a shorter clip this would seem to be a clear, concise way for the information to be doled out and digested by the judges).
This way it could marry PFT's critique and this week's judges' critique.
Having not listened to a full episode of the F+, I understand that once you get into the swing of things with a full-length podcast you will begin to grasp the show's shorthand, but it depends on how much patience you have to decode that shorthand that can make or break subscribing to a podcast.
Posted 24 August 2011 - 03:56 PM
I was introduced to the F+ Podcast through the Earwolf challenge, and I found it to be familiar in style and tone to things I've greatly enjoyed in the past. I've rooted for them since the beginning, but I was fairly certain that they wouldn't make it to the end... not because what they do isn't funny, but it isn't as accessible to a wide audience. Not everybody is going to enjoy hearing about the madness and perversion that lies in the murky depths of the internet.
That said, I'm glad that I was introduced to them by Earwolf, and I will definitely see them at their live show!
Posted 24 August 2011 - 06:32 PM
I think the reason The Little Dum Dum Club hasn't been threatened with elimination and the reason THEY WILL WIN, is because simply put THEY ARE THE FUNNIEST, and I get the feeling Matt and the judges have been able to hear that regardless of the particular challenge.
Posted 24 August 2011 - 08:07 PM
I am super sad to see F+ go, over the time of hearing them on this competition i have grown to fall in love with them. I WILL continue to listen to them even if they aren't on the Earlwolf network, even though i will have to go through the fucking horrible process of opening another tab. Fuck this gay earth.