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Episode 9.2 — Time Crunch: Day 2

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LDDC's clip this week is the funniest one I've heard of any in the challenge, and the first one that's really made me want to check out some full episodes.

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LDDC's clip this week is the funniest one I've heard of any in the challenge, and the first one that's really made me want to check out some full episodes.

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After last week, where both judges knew a lot about each podcast, this weeks judges seemed weirdly judgemental having only heard this weeks submissions. On yesterdays show Besser mentioned that LHR deserved to have a kind of handicap because of their format but on today's show that seemed to be thrown out the window. Both Never Not Funny and Walking The Room are great podcasts but the way they compared themselves to other shows seemed really elitist, like they don't even enjoy other podcasts.
I said yesterday that I hoped the shows would just use this submission to complain about being screwed on this challenge and TLDDC hit that one out of the park. I thought LHRs sketch was pretty good for what little time they had, their editing and post production was still somehow really good. I definitely feel like TL somehow skirts by each week on it's cute factor, not actually being funny. They seemed to be really reliant on their guests for comedy.

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After last week, where both judges knew a lot about each podcast, this weeks judges seemed weirdly judgemental having only heard this weeks submissions. On yesterdays show Besser mentioned that LHR deserved to have a kind of handicap because of their format but on today's show that seemed to be thrown out the window. Both Never Not Funny and Walking The Room are great podcasts but the way they compared themselves to other shows seemed really elitist, like they don't even enjoy other podcasts.
I said yesterday that I hoped the shows would just use this submission to complain about being screwed on this challenge and TLDDC hit that one out of the park. I thought LHRs sketch was pretty good for what little time they had, their editing and post production was still somehow really good. I definitely feel like TL somehow skirts by each week on it's cute factor, not actually being funny. They seemed to be really reliant on their guests for comedy.

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Ok, I didn't really agree with the judges this week. Totally Laime was the least funny for me. I don't care that it was an "honest conversation" like the judges said, I just didn't like the conversation. It's one of those conversations that people always seem to have that's really only interesting if you know the people involved. It always comes off as shallow to me, maybe even a little self-important. Would it have been better if it was posed to Zach Galifinakas? Maybe, but it all depends on if he wanted to make it funny & interesting. Listening to a married couple or anyone talk about how & when they lost thier virginity is pretty annoying, and TLP didn't bring anything to the conversation that I couldn't hear from literally anyone else. Yes, it was personal, but personal doesn't always mean funny or engaging.

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Ok, I didn't really agree with the judges this week. Totally Laime was the least funny for me. I don't care that it was an "honest conversation" like the judges said, I just didn't like the conversation. It's one of those conversations that people always seem to have that's really only interesting if you know the people involved. It always comes off as shallow to me, maybe even a little self-important. Would it have been better if it was posed to Zach Galifinakas? Maybe, but it all depends on if he wanted to make it funny & interesting. Listening to a married couple or anyone talk about how & when they lost thier virginity is pretty annoying, and TLP didn't bring anything to the conversation that I couldn't hear from literally anyone else. Yes, it was personal, but personal doesn't always mean funny or engaging.

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Totally agree that LHR's sketch was mediocre, but it was unfair to hold it against them that they didn't write a sketch about the situation at hand. LHR's format definitely worked against them this week, too bad.

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Totally agree that LHR's sketch was mediocre, but it was unfair to hold it against them that they didn't write a sketch about the situation at hand. LHR's format definitely worked against them this week, too bad.

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Just a note for thought about process:
You have a chat show with two people. You discover you have to deliver 5 (or fewer) minutes of content in 30 minutes. Pretty clear you just sit down and talk.
You have a sketch show with five people. You discover you have to deliver 5 (or fewer) minutes of content in 30 minutes. The amount of options and choices you have are mind blowing. And you have 5 people to have this discussion with. I don't care how well adjusted of a team you are. 30 minutes is NOTHING when trying to get 5 people to agree on something.

Super big props for LHR for sticking to what they do and doing it in 30 minutes.

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My biggest frustration with this series has been the constant refrain from judges "Listening to that 3 to 5 minute piece, I don't get a sense of what type of show it is." Except for the time the challenge was "Give us 5 minutes that demonstrates what your show is" that has not been the challenge. While it is great to have different judges each week, there is a huge benefit of having the same core set of judges each week with ONE guest judge. Or educate the judges ahead of time. Or make the challenges and what the challenge is actually supposed to demonstrate much much clearer.

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Just a note for thought about process:
You have a chat show with two people. You discover you have to deliver 5 (or fewer) minutes of content in 30 minutes. Pretty clear you just sit down and talk.
You have a sketch show with five people. You discover you have to deliver 5 (or fewer) minutes of content in 30 minutes. The amount of options and choices you have are mind blowing. And you have 5 people to have this discussion with. I don't care how well adjusted of a team you are. 30 minutes is NOTHING when trying to get 5 people to agree on something.

Super big props for LHR for sticking to what they do and doing it in 30 minutes.

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My biggest frustration with this series has been the constant refrain from judges "Listening to that 3 to 5 minute piece, I don't get a sense of what type of show it is." Except for the time the challenge was "Give us 5 minutes that demonstrates what your show is" that has not been the challenge. While it is great to have different judges each week, there is a huge benefit of having the same core set of judges each week with ONE guest judge. Or educate the judges ahead of time. Or make the challenges and what the challenge is actually supposed to demonstrate much much clearer.

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I'm going to be so disappointed if, as seems likely, Left Handed Radio is done for this week.
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First, I thought their sketch was hilarious. Just the concept of a Borat robot is extremely funny.
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Second, its very impressive that they managed to improvise, edit, and produce that sketch in the time they had. That is far and away more impressive than the other contestants, who had half an hour to bullshit around.
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I have liked LDDC generally more than TL lately, but I don't see any question that they had the worst submission. The other podcasts DID something.

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I'm going to be so disappointed if, as seems likely, Left Handed Radio is done for this week.
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First, I thought their sketch was hilarious. Just the concept of a Borat robot is extremely funny.
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Second, its very impressive that they managed to improvise, edit, and produce that sketch in the time they had. That is far and away more impressive than the other contestants, who had half an hour to bullshit around.
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I have liked LDDC generally more than TL lately, but I don't see any question that they had the worst submission. The other podcasts DID something.

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To me, Totally Laime presented what was by far the most compelling segment of the podcast, which means that they fully deserve their certain victory. Was it the funniest thing that I've ever heard? Perhaps not, but I was a hell of a lot more interested in listening to that conversation than I was in sitting through the other material submitted this week. Nice work, Totally Laime podcast.

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To me, Totally Laime presented what was by far the most compelling segment of the podcast, which means that they fully deserve their certain victory. Was it the funniest thing that I've ever heard? Perhaps not, but I was a hell of a lot more interested in listening to that conversation than I was in sitting through the other material submitted this week. Nice work, Totally Laime podcast.

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This is shaping up to be the most divisive week ever, especially if LHR leaves. And with good reason. Was this challenge Time Crunch or Riff About Getting Faked Out? I'd be interested to hear Scott's assessment on what the contestants turned in vis a vis his original thoughts.

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This is shaping up to be the most divisive week ever, especially if LHR leaves. And with good reason. Was this challenge Time Crunch or Riff About Getting Faked Out? I'd be interested to hear Scott's assessment on what the contestants turned in vis a vis his original thoughts.

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Besser's furious introspection seems to be a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing. Was it really so surprising that LHR handled the challenge as they did? What were they supposed to do, transform into a chat show and complain for 5 minutes like the other two?
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At a certain point there has got to be some sense from the host of this show that he understands the rules and can plan ahead accordingly. I'm not writing to trash Matt, I love his work and his criticism is oftentimes incisive. But these weekly eliminations are beginning to seem like random chance when he can't straighten out even basic misunderstandings before it's too late, and that's death for a reality show of this type.
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I'll join the chorus: I didn't laugh once at Totally Laime. Honest conversation? That conversation could have *become* honest in any number of ways, but instead it stayed in the shallow water of amusing and meaningless personal anecdotes.
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TLDDC was funny, at least, but I got the impression that they thought even 30 minutes of planning was too much time. It sounded like they flipped the mics on as soon as they got word of the switcheroo and just let'er rip. I had a distinct "my kid could paint that!" sensation.
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At the end of the day, Earwolf has a chance to diversity its podcast lineup by offering a real sketch show, or it can pick up yet another chatfest. This particular challenge changed no part of this fundamental reality, so it's really a shame that LHR seems destined for the ax. I can't help but think a lackluster year for the winner of EC season 1 (as seems inevitable for LDDC or TL) will dim anticipation for future challenges.
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And I don't mean that as an affront to those two shows, by the way. Both of them have their charms. I just don't see how they'll do well as part of Earwolf, where any number of more famous, more established names are already doing the same schtick.
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Also, based on the rumors in the comments, I tried to listen to Walking the Room to find out who got cut. Literally couldn't get through it. A bunch of guys I've never heard of saying 'fuck' a lot and complaining about the zoo? Riveting stuff!

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Besser's furious introspection seems to be a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing. Was it really so surprising that LHR handled the challenge as they did? What were they supposed to do, transform into a chat show and complain for 5 minutes like the other two?
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At a certain point there has got to be some sense from the host of this show that he understands the rules and can plan ahead accordingly. I'm not writing to trash Matt, I love his work and his criticism is oftentimes incisive. But these weekly eliminations are beginning to seem like random chance when he can't straighten out even basic misunderstandings before it's too late, and that's death for a reality show of this type.
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I'll join the chorus: I didn't laugh once at Totally Laime. Honest conversation? That conversation could have *become* honest in any number of ways, but instead it stayed in the shallow water of amusing and meaningless personal anecdotes.
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TLDDC was funny, at least, but I got the impression that they thought even 30 minutes of planning was too much time. It sounded like they flipped the mics on as soon as they got word of the switcheroo and just let'er rip. I had a distinct "my kid could paint that!" sensation.
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At the end of the day, Earwolf has a chance to diversity its podcast lineup by offering a real sketch show, or it can pick up yet another chatfest. This particular challenge changed no part of this fundamental reality, so it's really a shame that LHR seems destined for the ax. I can't help but think a lackluster year for the winner of EC season 1 (as seems inevitable for LDDC or TL) will dim anticipation for future challenges.
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And I don't mean that as an affront to those two shows, by the way. Both of them have their charms. I just don't see how they'll do well as part of Earwolf, where any number of more famous, more established names are already doing the same schtick.
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Also, based on the rumors in the comments, I tried to listen to Walking the Room to find out who got cut. Literally couldn't get through it. A bunch of guys I've never heard of saying 'fuck' a lot and complaining about the zoo? Riveting stuff!

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It's real shame to see the judges shit LHR like this. I actually preferred them to not mention Zack not being there. That shows more professionalism than whining about it. I enjoyed their sketch very much.

Well I guess we say goodbye to the most original podcast left in the competition.

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It's real shame to see the judges shit LHR like this. I actually preferred them to not mention Zack not being there. That shows more professionalism than whining about it. I enjoyed their sketch very much.

Well I guess we say goodbye to the most original podcast left in the competition.

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Well it's clear that discussion is getting more heated since we're so close to the end, but it's unfortunate that instead of debating each show's merits, we're still debating the format and structure of the challenge itself. Rather than showcasing each show at its strength and letting them really display their best attributes, we get one last artificial challenge that handicaps one or another contestant. Matt Besser alluded to the fact that the remaining podcasts were the rightful top 3; why couldn't we just let 'em go and deliver the goods? I guess they're saving that for next week's finale, but this challenge just seems like a misstep. Maybe if it had appeared as an earlier challenge, it would've been received better.
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By now, though, season-long listeners, as well as Matt and the producers, if not the guest judges, know the style and format of each remaining podcast. This week's challenge seems needlessly unfair, and, more importantly, very difficult to set parameters for judging. Several posts have criticized the harsh judging, but (aside from the unnecessarily mean "bullshit" comment) I think Matt and Dave were put in a very very precarious position as judges. Not only did they lack familiarity with the shows - which directly informs their ability to judge how LHR dealt with this particular challenge versus how LDDC or TLP - but they also weren't given any guidelines as to what terms they should judge the challenge. Maybe that's always been the case, but it was really glaring this week that there was no set criteria, as each podcast seemed to be discussed by different parameters.
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With only 3 left, I think there's only 1 overriding factor that should be considered - how entertaining each podcast is. Obviously many factors contribute to it (including professionalism, audio quality, flow, etc.) but we have three distinct contestants and it's a shame that one is going home not because they aren't entertaining, but because they couldn't meet a very steep challenge.
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I'd like to end on a positive note though, and say that as polarizing as this week has been, the Earwolf Challenge overall has been engrossing and entertaining. We wouldn't be so passionate if we didn't care, so kudos to everyone involved.

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Well it's clear that discussion is getting more heated since we're so close to the end, but it's unfortunate that instead of debating each show's merits, we're still debating the format and structure of the challenge itself. Rather than showcasing each show at its strength and letting them really display their best attributes, we get one last artificial challenge that handicaps one or another contestant. Matt Besser alluded to the fact that the remaining podcasts were the rightful top 3; why couldn't we just let 'em go and deliver the goods? I guess they're saving that for next week's finale, but this challenge just seems like a misstep. Maybe if it had appeared as an earlier challenge, it would've been received better.
.
By now, though, season-long listeners, as well as Matt and the producers, if not the guest judges, know the style and format of each remaining podcast. This week's challenge seems needlessly unfair, and, more importantly, very difficult to set parameters for judging. Several posts have criticized the harsh judging, but (aside from the unnecessarily mean "bullshit" comment) I think Matt and Dave were put in a very very precarious position as judges. Not only did they lack familiarity with the shows - which directly informs their ability to judge how LHR dealt with this particular challenge versus how LDDC or TLP - but they also weren't given any guidelines as to what terms they should judge the challenge. Maybe that's always been the case, but it was really glaring this week that there was no set criteria, as each podcast seemed to be discussed by different parameters.
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With only 3 left, I think there's only 1 overriding factor that should be considered - how entertaining each podcast is. Obviously many factors contribute to it (including professionalism, audio quality, flow, etc.) but we have three distinct contestants and it's a shame that one is going home not because they aren't entertaining, but because they couldn't meet a very steep challenge.
.
I'd like to end on a positive note though, and say that as polarizing as this week has been, the Earwolf Challenge overall has been engrossing and entertaining. We wouldn't be so passionate if we didn't care, so kudos to everyone involved.

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I was initially excited by the concept of this challenge, but as many have said, the result was a huge disappointment. This was absolutely not a "challenge of professionalism" as someone else stated earlier - it could have been if the producers had stuck with the challenge idea by telling the podcasts Zach had cancelled. Instead they revealed that it was all a lie before the podcasts produced their content - which makes zero sense to do. This challenge shows us nothing about how these podcasts would deal with a cancelling guest - it shows how comfortable the chat shows are with shitting on the Earwolf Challenge. If this were actually a test of professionalism, there's no way LDDC could get away with shit-talking (humorously) the guest and the competition. Completely useless submission from LDDC in terms of demonstrating their ability to deal with an abrupt change of plans - and it's not their fault, but the Earwolf Challenge's. I'd love for you guys to address why the "lie" was revealed before the submissions were created - as a listener it's baffling.
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Left Handed Radio is the clear winner of this challenge in terms of dealing with a cancellation and producing a competent segment in a very limited amount of time. I am a fan of all three of the remaining competitors, but TL's segment was uninspired to say the least and LDDC's completely useless in any context but this insane, mishandled challenge. It's actually infuriating that LHR are most likely being eliminated. I am infuriated by the assumed outcome of this free audio entertainment program. Infuriated!
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On a positive note - I do enjoy listening to the Earwolf Challenge and appreciate that this week's presumed outcome made me upset enough to spend the time writing this comment at work, so, thank you, I guess!

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I was initially excited by the concept of this challenge, but as many have said, the result was a huge disappointment. This was absolutely not a "challenge of professionalism" as someone else stated earlier - it could have been if the producers had stuck with the challenge idea by telling the podcasts Zach had cancelled. Instead they revealed that it was all a lie before the podcasts produced their content - which makes zero sense to do. This challenge shows us nothing about how these podcasts would deal with a cancelling guest - it shows how comfortable the chat shows are with shitting on the Earwolf Challenge. If this were actually a test of professionalism, there's no way LDDC could get away with shit-talking (humorously) the guest and the competition. Completely useless submission from LDDC in terms of demonstrating their ability to deal with an abrupt change of plans - and it's not their fault, but the Earwolf Challenge's. I'd love for you guys to address why the "lie" was revealed before the submissions were created - as a listener it's baffling.
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Left Handed Radio is the clear winner of this challenge in terms of dealing with a cancellation and producing a competent segment in a very limited amount of time. I am a fan of all three of the remaining competitors, but TL's segment was uninspired to say the least and LDDC's completely useless in any context but this insane, mishandled challenge. It's actually infuriating that LHR are most likely being eliminated. I am infuriated by the assumed outcome of this free audio entertainment program. Infuriated!
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On a positive note - I do enjoy listening to the Earwolf Challenge and appreciate that this week's presumed outcome made me upset enough to spend the time writing this comment at work, so, thank you, I guess!

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I don't know if it was fair to call LHR's sketch a Borat riff, because while it had references to the character, for me it was about someone's passion project aging to a sad stub when they finally finish it. About desperation. Also, even if they pulled the sketch out of the files an recorded it anew, like Dave Anthony claimed they did, I don't know if that's the worst thing. From what I gather, almost every podcast which relies on guests seems to have a backlog. (But I guess such was not the warrior's call of the "challenge"!)

EDIT: I must be the change I want to see in the world, like a Gahndi who just consumes and consumes entertainment. I'll subscribe to Left Handed if I so oppose this!

EDIT 2: Actually, seeing as how their sketch was about people working very hard for a long time towards a worthless goal, maybe its much more about Galifinakis "cancelling" on them then it seems on the surface...

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