2017 is coming to a close, and with it I’m left to reflect on what was an incredibly challenging year for me, personally. For me it was a year where I faced setbacks at every turn, had numerous family members die, and watched my son go in for brain surgery; and that was just the last three or four months! While it was a trying time for my home and business, there were a few things that got me through it…
So, here we go with the start of my looking back at 2017 series, all titled “A ‘Best Of’ List”. So join me as we start things off with a look at my favorite podcasts not produced by Constantly Calibrating of 2017:
Right out of the gate we do have a special little caveat: Chris Hernandez, host of Casting for Two is one of Constantly Calibrating’s Featured Personalities (more info on that program in 2018). That being said, his show is not currently a part of Constantly Calibrating’s productions, so I’m going to shout it out, because it’s absolutely stellar. Chris’ style is one that I wish I could emulate, as he gives off confidence while asking questions few people think to ask. His interviews with Nick Scarpino & Sugar Pine 7 border on being works of art, even if the latter was less interview and more beautiful insanity.
Simply put, you need to add this show to your lineup of podcasts. It doesn’t matter if you know nothing of a guest or topic, give the show a listen and find something new to appreciate.
Originally I discovered Josiah Renaudin’s show, originally about freelance video game writing, due to my friend Vanessa Marie making an appearance. Honestly, I listened to the show because she and I weren’t BFFs yet & instead of asking her how she built Gamer Assault Weekly I figured I’d listen to someone else do it. From the opening theme song, which I’ll go on record as saying is the second best podcast theme song right after our own, I was focused in on the show. Josiah’s speaking style and ability to lead a guest on a conversational journey is one that I’m constantly impressed with, even after 125+ episodes.
From his chats with Mike Laidlaw, formerly of BioWare, to Nick Scarpino (again) he has pulled off an incredible run of guests in 2017. His 2018 looks equally impressive, and one I can’t wait to tune in for.
What can I say about Always Open that I haven’t rambled off either on Twitter or directly to Barbara Dunkelman at RTX? The addition of the podcast to Rooster Teeth’s already girthy stable of shows was a breath of fresh air. Rooster Teeth’s content as always had an openness about it, but Always Open was something different. It was a safe place, without being directly called such, where the company’s personalities and friends could talk about anything. From sexuality to goofy stories to dealing with mental or physical illness, the show covered it all.
I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t initially tune in because my wife and I wanted to hear Barbara discuss sex or masturbatorial habits, but that’s not what pulled me in as a longtime listener. The show was very interesting, and insightful, but it wasn’t until the 15th episode with Kati Morton that I felt inspired. In that episode they took a look at mental health issues, the benefits of therapy, and other topics, and after listening I felt different. It was that episode, in part, that inspired me to explore my own mental health show; a show that would become The Mental Health Breakdown. That episode alone may have helped, to an extent, to save my life this year, and I’ll always be grateful for that.
It’s also my 2018 pipe dream goal to contribute to the show in some capacity, so there’s that.
It’s no secret that at Constantly Calibrating we’re fans of Kinda Funny. We interview Greg Miller at least once a year, I became irrationally giddy when Tim Gettys “connected” with me on LinkedIn, and when Greg announced he was married on Twitter while we were recording the podcast we had an impromptu discussion of the man. (I’ve also had a weird reoccurring dream of what the Internet will be life when Greg eventually announces he and his wife are pregnant.)
The combination of personalities, from Tim’s eternal optimism to Nick charming perviness (yes, I’m admitting here that I have a crush on him) to Greg quite possibly being insane — and one of the best humans I know — they have put together one hell of a show. Them, alongside their ever-growing crew and frequent guests put out the best constructed topical show on the Internet. Part of me wants to refer to it in the same way as we do our own, a “geek & gaming show”, but that would be inaccurate. The GameOverGreggy Show is so much more than that in that it offers fresh outlooks on every conceivable topic.
The departure of Colin Moriarty was a major shift in 2017 for Kinda Funny, but honestly, I think it was for the best. Colin was and is a phenomenal personality who puts out amazing content, but styles were greatly shifting at Kinda Funny, and it was making the content stiffer than it needed be. Now the team and specifically GOG are open to be the true powerhouse they need to be.
2018 will without a doubt be the Year of Kinda Funny, mark my words.
Well, there you have it, the best podcasts of 2017, at least in my opinion. What were your favorite podcasts or podcast episodes in 2017? Give me some new stuff to listen to or watch.