I listen to a ton of podcasts. I listen to them while I work. I listen to them while I do chores. I listen to them on long walks. Podcasts are a big part of my life. There are probably over a dozen podcasts I listen to with semi-regularity. Some of them I have been listening to for years. You go through peaks and valleys with them at times along the way. Over the last year, podcasting has been quite different, obviously. The pandemic changed the way almost every podcast was recorded. I have definitely noticed some changes in my favorite podcasts over the last stretch of time. Some have remained strong, while others have definitely gotten worse. So much so I felt compelled to write about it.
If I had a list of my top-five podcasts, The Flop House and Doughboys would definitely be in there. In fact, for many years I considered The Flop House my favorite podcast. All time, that is maybe still true, but it definitely isn’t the case currently. In truth, that has probably been the case for a couple years now. Ever since co-host Elliott Kalan left New York for Los Angeles for work purposes and had to start recording remotely it took a dip. They just can’t have the same chemistry they did once upon a time. On top of that, though, they’ve been regularly having guests on the show and, honestly, I don’t like it at all. Even if I like the guest, I don’t like guests on The Flop House. It’s not a guest-focused podcast. It’s three guys watching a probably bad movie and talking about it. Guests just disrupt the dynamic and lower the quality of the show. I don’t know if they decided to start having guests because of the pandemic or they just wanted to change things up because they felt like they were in a rut, but I hope they go back to guestless episodes soon.
Doughboys, meanwhile, hasn’t changed things up as much. Sure, they are on different sides of the country now, and also their guests aren’t with them, but that feels like less of the issue here. Honestly, this may just be two insane met going slowly more insane. Mitch and Wiger are completely ridiculous people in the best of times. It can be hard to tell how much the pandemic has affected them as a result. They definitely seem even more absurd now, though, and actively aggressive toward each others, their listeners, and the world at large with increasing fervor and frequency. Doughboys often threaten to stop doing the podcast, and they may frankly just be burnt out.
On the other hand, one of my favorite podcasts is just crushing it. That would be Stop Podcasting Yourself. It’s a Canadian podcast where two Canadian comedians interview guests who are also usually comedian. They’ve handled the changes excellently. The show is just as funny and just as sharp. Currently, it may be my favorite podcast. If you are also a podcast listener, how are your favorite podcasts going? Are they doing well? Are they struggling? What are your personal podcast power rankings like?