Tuesday 10 October 2017

Podcast reccs: FistShark Marketing

Someone recently suggested check out the world of podcasts. I like audio drama, was their logic, and there are a lot of cool ones available for free (with an option to support them on Patreon, etc,.). I solicited suggestions from friends and have a list as long as my arm (but further suggestions certainly welcome). Wolf 359 is on the list, obviously, but that seems like a rabbit hole I'm going to want to put some real time into but another friend suggested something a little more digestible and from a talent I was already familiar with.

I've been watching Jim Sterling's video game current affairs show The Jimquisition since it was on The Escapist. Hey, remember that website back when it was more than a forum being kept alive by Yahtzee Crowshaw's shows? Yeah, me too, it was before the Nazis decided to make a comeback through the medium of gamer self-entitlement.
Anyway, Jim Sterling alongside Conrad Zimmerman and Paulson Sear (and Caitlin Cooke in earlier episodes) form the staff of FistShark Marketing, the world's most morally bankrupt PR firm. As you can imagine, that claim is up against some pretty stiff competition.

The show is available on iTunes and YouTube and it is hilarious. Each episode has two or three sketches, all improvised by the three actors playing executives of the titular firm. Between them they weave a surreal world of awful products; inexcusable exploitation of a hated co-worker called Craig; the scientific misadventures of company physician Doctor Nightscream as well as “Balthasar and the boys in the basement” who may or may not be Satanists; and Dean Cain.
That was one of the things that sold me on the series: an odd fixation they have with Dean Cain and presenting him in more and more bizarre ways. One episode had him living in the company's basement and bothering the staff because he had a wasp's nest inside his head. Miley Cyrus is also a “client” of the firm and somehow comes off worse.
I am not going to claim everything in the series is in good taste, it most certainly isn't, or that every sketch works because this is improv comedy and sometimes things just don't land. If you're interested in a rollickingly bizarre time I personally recommend the episodes Hello Dolly (featuring a doomed attempt to stop Richard Dawkins tweeting) and Viva Slaatvania (in which the team try to build a Biblical Ark to survive a teambuilding exercise). 

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