With Season One of The Earwolf Challenge under our belt, we're ready to go back and see what worked, what didn't, and how we can make Season Two even better. This serves as both an episode of The Wolf Den and The Earwolf Challenge as Jeff Ullrich, Frank Capello, and Matt Besser talk to three of our vocal forum participants to find out how we screwed up and what we did right. If we left anything out, be sure to let us know in the forums!
Episode — Earwolf Challenge Epilogue
Posted 29 September 2011 - 03:44 AM
oh no, frank... thanks for being awesome, and doing some amazing work for us nerdy (grateful or un) fans. thank you to matt and jeff as well, this was an enlightening episode. my only comment belongs to the question of a non comedy season 2. i dont think its apples and oranges if you decide on a general theme, like comedy was. i guess you can take one of the general categories from itunes, so tech or hobbies or music, its still a centered idea. i think its a cool idea, jeff, because i think it could open the doors to a new stable of guests, whether its underground musicians or the comic book artists. some of my favorite episodes of the other shows were when ted leo was on cbb or when warren from the vandals was on who charted, its a fresh voice from what we are used to. in the end, as well, i think it is a positive product to bring in new ears and help grow the earwolf family of listeners. a lot of us are excited for earwolf no matter where it goes, and just happy to be a part of it from the begninning. blah blah, its early, sorry
Posted 29 September 2011 - 04:03 AM
Thanks for this extra episode, although it's kind of like someone offering you heroin after you've been in rehab for weeks.
Regarding the coaching sessions, I think you touched on this anyway, but perhaps the contestants need to be given more time to come up with an idea before the session so that they know what they're going to do. It could be a rule that they have to have come up with a proposal for what they're going to do, before the call. That way, the advice Matt gives would be specific to each podcast, rather than being general thoughts on the weeks challenge.
Regarding Left Handed Radio's exit, I still feel like the sketch they submitted that week was the best contribution of that challenge, even though I still didn't think it was particularly great and I felt strongly that Totally Laime had made by far the worst submission that week, and I think that's why there was such anger over it. Not only was the challenge much harder on LHR, but they still came up with a better clip regardless. Obviously you can't really do much to argue over subjective opinions, but I was pretty shocked at the time that the judges all thought it was by far the worst clip.
I really hope you do season 2, I'd still prefer it to be a challenge for comedy podcasts, and I'd hope it would be a similar format to this year, but just with some of the changes you've been discussing. I agree with Matt on the idea of doing genre's of podcasting, that it's too apples and oranges. If you want Earwolf to branch out into other areas of podcasting, I'd start out with a more professional show. Thanks again to everyone involved in working on The challenge, I really did enjoy the show.
Posted 29 September 2011 - 07:33 AM
My suggestion for Season 2 of the Earwolf Challenge would be to shift the focus away from talking about how bad our bad sketch was.
Not that we can't keep having the discussion, but just that it pains me that we went out on a submission that died so horribly in the room that it echoes across time. Talk about it all you want, but know that it's gutting to keep hearing about how bad it was.
Please know, Earwolfists, that our regular show is funny.
Posted 29 September 2011 - 08:53 AM
My advice for season 2: Don't change a thing! Trying to please everyone would take away what was so great about season 1! The show got people talking, and it gave more exposure to the shows that deserved it. Reality competition shows were designed to be divisive, and The Earwolf Challenge was much more real and fair than anything on TV. BESSER. MUST. HOST.
Posted 29 September 2011 - 10:21 AM
I like the idea of a non-comedy focused season 2 but Matt is right in thinking that alone is too apples vs. oranges. The subject theme should be more narrowly defined. Also, the criteria for evaluating a political/government debate/talk show are already established but hearing this kind of talk and getting into the political feelings of Earwolf and guest judges is going to turn off some people.
Posted 29 September 2011 - 11:16 AM
I thought my voice on the podcast sounded a little like Brady's. I hope folks could tell the difference between us. I got a little amped up for this and probably violated a couple of the goals I set for myself before recording this. The goals:
1. Don't talk too much
2. Don't try to be funny - let the funny people be funny
3. Be honest - if somebody says something I disagree with, then disagree - it will only make the show more interesting.
I was honest, so at least I got the last one right. I think I only left out one thing - that if people want a season two of the Earwolf Challenge, then providing a donation wouldn't hurt the cause. In fact, it would most definitely help. Donation forms are on every podcast's home page and I bet the tech guys know which show is initiating the most donations. If I were Jeff Ullrich, the decision of whether or not to have a season two would be relatively easy if the show was bringing in a bunch of money.
Posted 29 September 2011 - 12:42 PM
Don't feel bad, Chris and Brady. I felt like kind of a dumbass too. I think the conversation sounded better than it felt.
To Frank, Matt and Jeff - You guys have gone above and beyond in discussing the fan's criticisms (which are themselves a testament to the show's success), and I'd like to say thanks for doing so, and for putting on a really entertaining show. I hope to see it continue, in whatever form you choose. Nice job.
Adam - We're talking about it so much because we like you guys :) I found the judging fair, but you guys had a tough challenge that week, and producing something competitive in a half hour is not easy. I've listened to all nine of your episodes - some more than once - and really enjoyed them. Keep up the good work!
Late in the episode, I brought up the idea of replacing the "coaching session" with "the pitch," and Matt's concern was that he doesn't want to coach and judge - which makes sense (although that's essentially how Season 1 worked). If you add a host, maybe that person could take on the advisor role. On any other competition, the coaches are separate from the judges, for the very same reasons Matt is uneasy about it. I think Matt made a great coach for the shows that actually brought ideas to the table, and he made a great judge, but it would be best if he was only doing one of the two.
Posted 29 September 2011 - 11:10 PM
Getting rid of the coaching segments? That was one of the few interesting things about this show. This is getting more and more half-assed by the episode.
Not surprised you had to talk Little Dum Dum Club into doing it, I'm sure they knew they were going to get dicked over because they were in Australia.
Why would any podcast want to waste their time on a season 2?