My Top 5 Favourite Podcasts

May 23, 2020

I’ve always been a big fan of podcasts.  When I used to commute back and forth to an office job, I’d listen to them on the journey and often during the day when I was trying to block out distractions. Most of the podcasts I listen to are related to my job as a freelance content marketer or my movie blog The Book, The Film, The T-Shirt.

Now in week 1000 of lockdown (it feels like), I listen to them while I’m working on my blogs or doing client work. They’re also handy for when I want to block out the sounds of the endless Paw Patrol episodes my son likes to watch.

So, these podcasts below are the ones I listen to no matter what and look forward to them popping up on my podcasts feed on my iPhone.

The Bugle

Andy Zaltzman of The Bugle Podcast

Image Courtesy of The Bugle Podcast

Styling itself an ‘audio newspaper for a visual world’, I started listening to The Bugle not long after it launched in 2008 on the recommendation of my brother. Created and hosted by comedians John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman.  It’s a left-wing satirical podcast and anyone that knows me knows that this is exactly my kind of humour.

Every week the podcast satirizes the week’s news and I have often found myself crying with laughter.  Originally part of The Times Online’s stable of podcasts, The Bugle was cancelled after the duo went after The Times, News International and Rupert Murdoch as part of the phone-hacking scandal.

Luckily the podcast was resurrected as an independent production but John Oliver left after he became mega-famous hosting Last Week Tonight in the US.  Now Andy Zaltzman continues to present with a rotating series of guests from all over the world including Nish Kumar, Alice Fraser, Hari Kondabolu, Anuvab Pal, Wyatt Cenac, Nato Green, Tiff Stevenson and Jenna Friedman.

I’m also the proud owner of a Bugle Fuckeulogy mug.  Something they do when someone truly terrible dies such as Saddam Hussein, Colonel Gaddafi or Osama bin Laden.

Alice Fraser also hosts a daily spin-off podcast The Last Post, which is a short show featuring special guests (often that week’s Bugle co-host) and features news and headlines from an alternate reality.  Though in today’s crazy times, it’s difficult to know when they’re being sarcastic.

They often do live Bugle’s at venues up and down the country (they’ve even been to The Stand in Newcastle) and last week did their first-ever YouTube live stream.

Mayo & Kermode’s Film Review

Image courtesy of BBC

Hello to Jason Isaacs!

Another podcast I’ve listened to for well over a decade, actually, now I come to think of it, over 15 years (I feel old).  I listen to a lot of movie podcasts as that’s my passion, I studied film as a postgrad and I run a review site too.  It’s a great excuse for just wanting to watch as many films as I want at any time.  Well, it was until I had kids, now cinema trips are rare and as I said before, Paw Patrol.

Mayo & Kermode’s Film Review has gained a cult following over the years, with their own shorthand and terminology they use.  In the end, though, it’s a very good movie podcast and because of its popularity, they get to interview some of the biggest actors and directors in the world.  Occasionally, Mark Kermode will go on an epic rant about how awful a movie is.  It’s genuinely hilarious to see how upset he gets about it.

Shagged. Married. Annoyed.

I was lucky enough to meet Chris Ramsay a couple of times when he did gigs at Northumbria Students’ Union, where I was marketing manager.  He is, without doubt, one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet.  I’ve followed his career since then and it’s great to see him doing so well and finding the success he has.

In the podcast, Chris and his wife Rosie talk about all things kids, relationships and life.  It’s genuinely funny, mostly because anyone in a long term relationship, or with kids can totally relate to what they are saying.  It’s a genuinely, funny, warm show which is just what the world needs right now.

The Guilty Feminist

I discovered this podcast when it did a crossover event with The Bugle.  The Guilty Feminist is hosted by the very funny Deborah Francis-White.  As you’d expect, the show discusses issues and causes related to women and is not afraid to pull feminism up when it threatens to undermine itself.  A really refreshing show that discusses serious issues but doesn’t take itself too seriously.  I recommend everyone listens to this, not just women.

Trypod (The Try Guys)

If you spend any time on YouTube, you’ll probably remember the Try Guys.  They started out on BuzzFeed making popular videos where they would do things like enduring a pregnancy simulator, wear high heels for a day or try on sexy Halloween costumes (spoiler alert – not sexy).  A while ago they went independent and have been releasing a ridiculous amount of content.  At the moment, they’re all isolating by themselves or with their partners and are slowly losing the plot.

Trypod is their weekly podcast that goes deeper into certain topics.  For all they are known for doing humorous videos, they’re all nice guys and through the podcast, they’re also dealing with issues around mental health, self-esteem, LGBTQ and relationships.

If you follow the Try Guys on YouTube, then you definitely need to listen.

Honourable Mentions

We Have Ways of Making You Talk
The Allusionist
Off Menu
Pilot TV



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