Comedy podcasts are booming. What are some of your favorites?

marc_maron

Image Credit: Cassie Wright/WireImage.com

These are heady times to be a comedy nerd with an Internet connection. The past couple of years have seen an explosion of comedy podcasts, and in this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly (on stands June 24), we profile the man behind one of the best and most-buzzed-about ones out there: stand-up comedian Marc Maron, whose twice-weekly podcast, WTF, features fascinating and often astonishingly raw and intimate conversations with some of the biggest names in comedy (including Ben Stiller, Robin Williams, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, and Amy Poehler, among many others) — nearly all of them done in Maron’s cluttered garage in Los Angeles. And WTF is just the tip of a very large iceberg. The fact is, there are so many comedy podcasts now, comedians could spend virtually all of their time just bouncing between them. “It’s like the new comedy circuit,” Patton Oswalt (who frequently shows up as a guest on his friends’ comedy podcasts and really ought to start his own) tells EW. If you’re a newbie to the podcasting universe, here are a few of the biggest and best out there:

1. WTF. Some comedy podcasts are all about jokes. Maron’s podcast is not one of those. He goes deep with his guests, exploring career ups and downs, relationship troubles, neuroses and fears, and the joys and sorrows of a life in comedy. Asked for his thoughts on WTF, Aziz Ansari (who’s been a guest in Maron’s garage) offered this to EW: “Honestly, just stop reading this and download a few episodes of Marc’s show right now. If you like comedy or just human conversation, you will enjoy it. You don’t need to read some quote from a ding dong like me.” ‘Nuff said. Check it out on iTunes or here.

2. Comedy Bang! Bang!. Scott Aukerman, a former writer for Mr. Show and producer of Zach Galifianakis’ “Between Two Ferns” web series, hosts an eclectic group of his alt-comedy friends (recent guests include Andy Samberg, Andy Richter, and Rob Corddry), who often show up in character and bust into improv. Often strange, consistently hilarious, always unpredictable. Check it out on iTunes or here.

3. The Adam Carolla Show. The Guinness Book of World Records title holder for the most downloaded podcast (who knew they kept track of such things?), Carolla’s unscripted show is not for the easily offended. But you knew that already. Check it out on iTunes or here.

4. Doug Loves Movies. Stand-up comedian Doug Benson is well known as a great lover of marijuana (see: Super High Me), but he also loves movies! Recorded in front of a live audience, Benson’s podcast features him and his panel of guests talking about whatever flicks they’ve seen recently. If you love comedy and you love movies (not to mention if you share Benson’s other enthusiasm), what are you waiting for? Check it out on iTunes or here.

5. The Nerdist. Amiably hosted by nerd-in-chief Chris Hardwick, The Nerdist takes a comedic look at all things of interest to nerds. Technology, comic books, Doctor Who, zombie flicks — it all goes into the geek-out hopper for a freewheeling discussion with Hardwick, his sidekicks, and his guests. Check it out on iTunes or here.

6. The Pod F. Tompkast. Paul F. Tompkins’ free-form, absurdist podcast is hard to explain and impossible to pigeonhole, but if you’re a fan of alternative sketch comedy like the legendary Mr. Show (on which Tompkins was a featured player and writer), you should definitely give it a listen. Check it out on iTunes or here.

7. Jordan, Jesse, Go!. Hosts Jesse Thorn and Jordan Morris and their comedy friends engage in funny and brainy riffing on pretty much anything they find interesting and humorous, with a particular focus on life in your 20s. Check it out on iTunes or here.

8. SModcast. If you’re a hardcore fan of writer-director Kevin Smith, you already know he lords over his own podcasting empire, of which SModcast (which Smith co-hosts with Scott Mosier) is but one piece. But if you’re just a moderate fan or simply curious to hear Smith stonily extemporizing in his inimitable fashion on movies, hockey, or whatever else pops into his head, surf on over to iTunes or to here.

There are many more we could mention (among others, respect must be paid to Ricky Gervais, who helped blaze the comedy-podcasting trail). But for now we’ll throw it over to you. Have you explored the world of comedy podcasts? If so, which are your favorites?

Comments (311 total) Add your comment
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  • mike

    My personal favorite is Jimmy Pardo’s Never Not Funny. Jimmy’s a great interviewer and a very funny guy.

    • Chaddogg

      There never will be anything funnier than the original….The Ricky Gervais Show (which, before they were cartoons on HBO, were ridiculously hysterical podcasts)

      • MattChance

        OK, so that blanket statement is the only right answer, according to you.

        You haven’t heard any other podcasts is what your problem is.

      • Gupta

        Actually Matt, Chaddog was dead on so shut the f*ck up you unfunny loser.

      • Gupta Smells

        Actually Gupta, Your a gupta and a smelly potty mouth. Ricky Gervais is only funny in Bollywood and England. Check out anyone other than Gervais and you will see comedy and humour…kinda like I see yo mamma!

      • matt

        Jimmy Pardo is great. Up there with Scharpling, Thorn, and Maron as the guys who dominate comedy podcasting.

    • Andy Baker

      I’m with you, Jimmy is the best.

    • Terry

      I’m stunned that Never Not Funny didn’t make this list. Are you kidding me? I only became aware of all these others because Jimmy Pardo brought them to my attention. Ricky Gervais then Jimmy Pardo. WTF?

    • Lagitha

      Neer Not Funny will always be the original podcast. Listening to seasons 1 through 9 shows that they were outstanding at it from the get-go, and continue to develop a much more sophisticated podcast as the years go by.

      • ChrisT

        your all morons

      • pat

        *you’re

  • Tara

    I love the Nerdist! so funny.

    • Brian K

      Nerdist is good but The Bugle is the best.

      • elysedc

        Absolutely! Can’t believe “The Bugle” didn’t make it, it’s one of my faves. Started listening in 2008, didn’t even find the Nerdist until a couple months ago, but it definitely deserves to be up there (along with WTF.) Scott Aukerman is great- all the earwolf podcasts are awesome. They should have added: Mike Detective (earwolf), Wait wait don’t tell me (NPR), and How did this get made? (Paul Scheer & friends, not sure if it’s through anyone else…)

      • Jessica

        I adore the Bugle!!! It has been the cause of more awkward laughter at work than any other I listen to.

      • Steve

        Huge fan of The Bugle here, too! They do a great job of creating absurd motifs that are funny as he**. Also love the response whenever Pippa is mentioned: “Oh…Pippa.” And on what other podcast would Pippa ever be mentioned?

    • Churble

      I like the Nerdist when he has guests on. Now that they’ve started doing episodes with just the three of them there is WAY too much Jonah for my taste. That man is not funny.

  • John

    WTF and The Nerdist are really good but the only can’t miss comedy podcast for me is Sklarbro Country. Jason and Randy Sklar are absolutely hilarious.

    HENDERSON!

    • Shasta

      HENDERSON! I rotate among The Nerdist, Sklarbro Country, and Who Charted? I love them all SO MUCH. (Although I’m not a fan of the Nerdist when the guests are non-comedians, to be honest. And who has time to keep up with the hostful/guestless episodes?) Who Charted? makes me laugh ridiculously while I’m sitting in traffic. I highly recommend it to anyone with a bad commute.

      • bastarddutronc

        I’m a HENDERSON guy as well, G*d bless the Sklar Bros. – have to say, their random diss of the late 90s sucess of Sue Costello was one of the funniest things I’ve ever heard.

  • Amanda

    Adam Corolla is my favorite. I download his show every day, he is my hero. If you were a fan of his radio show than you will enjoy his podcast and it is free, too. Get it on, got to get it on, no choice but to get it on, mandate…get..it…on!!!

  • Sean

    The fact that The Monday Morning Podcast with Bill Burr and The Joe Rogan Experience aren’t on here is a travesty.

  • AJS

    1. Rogan
    2. Carolla

    End of list

    • T

      For me, Comedy Bang Bang is the pinnacle. Consistently great guests who always surprise. After that, I like Doug Loves Movies and How Did This Get Made. And WTF is amazing when Maron’s interviewing someone I’m interested in. When he isn’t, I tend to skip it.

      • T

        That wasn’t meant to be a reply. Oh well.

      • lvl38beard

        I am agreement. Except switch Doug love Movies, only because i enjoy film games alot. How did that get made is amazing as well.

      • Churble

        I love How Did This Get Made. Bad movies are always fun.

    • antigeneric

      AJS is right. End of list.

  • Mr. Holloway

    Totally agree about Oswalt.

    He’s a great guest (have caught him on Bill Simmons’ BS Report a couple of times) and he really should have his own podcast.

  • Ida

    The Mike O’Meara Show podcast (mikeomearashow.com). Spun off of a one-time nationally syndicated hot talk radio show, is consistently professional and entertaining.

    • GHII

      I agree. I never miss an episode!

  • Bill

    “My Brother, My Brother and Me” or MBMBaM is amazing.

    • matt

      Too true. Laugh upon laugh on that show. The sort of show you have to pause to die laughing so you don’t miss anything.

  • Jenny

    The Nerdist and Doug Loves Movies are my weekly must-hears, but How Did This Get Made? can also be great…

  • Nicole

    All of the podcasts on the list except Adam Corolla and Kevin Smith are ones that I listen to regularly. Plus, I second Sklarboro Country (you don’t have to be a sports fan to enjoy it). Also, Pop My Culture gets great guests sometimes, and How Did This Get Made? is a really funny look at terrible movies. I have a really long commute to and from work, and I swear comedy podcasts have helped curb my road rage.

    • Josh

      I second everything you just said. In addition, The Smartest Man In The World with Greg Proops is also exceptionally funny.

  • Corey

    WTF is pretty great.

    There’s an improvised one that I love called The Mustache Rangers. It’s surreal and fun. Check it out on iTunes!

  • goose

    You are all missing one of the best stand ups out there today, Bill Burr’s Monday Morning Podcast

    • Katie D.

      YES, goose!!! Bill Burr and his Monday Morning Podcast are easily the best part of my week!

  • NPP

    Mike and Tom Eat Snacks or MaTES to the fans!

    • shelsby

      Yes! I love MATES!!! Perhaps because I loved them on Ed so much…where are the darn DVDs already?!?

  • John

    Big O and Dukes is my favorite

    • Jeff

      Greg Fitzsimmons does a great podcast – Fitzdog Radio

      • todd

        Walking the room is the saddest funniest podcuddle out there

    • Sandwich

      Yup, love Big O and Dukes. Smodcast, Nerdist, and Carolla are my other must listens.

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