Author Topic: Podcast recommendation  (Read 3472 times)

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Offline mjtoal

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Podcast recommendation
« on: January 28, 2015, 03:56:12 PM »
http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/timc

The Infinite Monkey Cage is a BBC Radio show and podcast which is a comical look at scientific stuff. It is really good, funny and informative.

It is hosted by Robin Ince, a comedian and rationalist, and Prof Brian Cox, a popular science broadcaster and particle physicist (who was once in a pop band which had a number 1 record in the UK). They have interesting guests, mostly from the UK but invariably worth listening to.

Start with the Christmas special, which will give a flavour of the show.

Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2015, 10:55:38 PM »
I've been listening to it since its first episode. Highly recommended.
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Offline Plastiq

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2015, 02:20:23 AM »
I fucking love this show. Just the right mix of fascinating information, and skilled humor (especially from Ince—admittedly sometimes members of the panel engage in a type of indulgent, lame humor that I'm really not fond of).

Offline starnado

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2015, 04:22:43 AM »
I wish I enjoyed it. The content is right up my street. However, the 'indulgent, lame humour' that Plastiq mentioned gets on my nerves.

I find the hosts particularly smarmy and superior. I wrote a diatribe about Brian Cox (or Brain Cox as I called him then) two crashes ago that has been lost in the mists of time. I love his television shows but at times he has a sneering, elitist edge. Robin Ince is even worse.

Not everybody is an intellectual. It is the same problem I have with Skeptics with a K. Lets laugh at the stupids. I love the way the SGU talks respectfully about how culture and society can foster ignorance in individuals without mocking the individuals themselves (unless they are profiting from lies or the stupidity of others in which case they give them both barrels).

Of course, ymmv. I can definitely see why many like it. I have chuckled at times and also enjoyed many sections but the smarminess is a big ol' fly in the ointment.
'The little, stupid differences are nothing next to the big, stupid similarities'
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Offline Plastiq

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2015, 09:10:00 AM »
I wish I enjoyed it. The content is right up my street. However, the 'indulgent, lame humour' that Plastiq mentioned gets on my nerves.

I find the hosts particularly smarmy and superior. I wrote a diatribe about Brian Cox (or Brain Cox as I called him then) two crashes ago that has been lost in the mists of time. I love his television shows but at times he has a sneering, elitist edge. Robin Ince is even worse.

Not everybody is an intellectual. It is the same problem I have with Skeptics with a K. Lets laugh at the stupids. I love the way the SGU talks respectfully about how culture and society can foster ignorance in individuals without mocking the individuals themselves (unless they are profiting from lies or the stupidity of others in which case they give them both barrels).

Of course, ymmv. I can definitely see why many like it. I have chuckled at times and also enjoyed many sections but the smarminess is a big ol' fly in the ointment.

I don't think we're talking about the same thing. My issue is with the type of humor that probably derives from the same thoughts that lead someone to think slapstick is a good idea. [God I loathe slapstick.]

Alan Davies off QI is the living embodiment of it.

Offline starnado

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2015, 02:01:53 PM »
I get you, it is a different thing, you are right.
'The little, stupid differences are nothing next to the big, stupid similarities'
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Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2015, 07:51:05 PM »
Cognitive Dissonance is a lot more "laugh at the stupids" than Skeptics with a K is.
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Offline mjtoal

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2015, 03:14:42 AM »
I don't see an elitist, sneering edge to Brian Cox. I think he is pretty fair minded, and if he gets a bit pissed off at some stupidity, it is usually well deserved and he probably constrains his more appropriate responses.

Ince is quite funny and quick witted and knows a fair bit for a civilian but is clearly the sidekick to Cox's expert. But that is OK. The guests inevitably vary, some being brilliant, others not so much. I thought recent episodes were good with great guests in the last episode on Fierce Creatures, and Richard Wiseman and Chris Hadfield in other episodes.

Offline starnado

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2015, 05:14:17 AM »
You know what, I am nothing if not fair. I will give IMC another go.

I think it just a) caught me at a bad time and b) some small comment probably rubbed me up the wrong way.

With Brian Cox - I love most of his output. I watched Wonders of... with great interest and enthusiasm. It was when they did Starwatch Unplugged that he showed a different side. The scripted stuff was great but the unplugged section was pretty much just riffing and chatting that seemed a bit, erm, sneering and elitist. It left a bad taste in my mouth. So I am judgemental... probably. I may give Infinite M C another go. Like I said, it is the sort of thing I usually like.

Skeptics with a K - well, I had just listened to Jay describe a conversation with a cab driver who had several woo-based opinions. Jay was so nice to this guy and spoke of him in respectful terms despite his obvious disagreement with the man's opinions. Then I listened to S with a K where they relayed several similar stories, about everyday encounters with paranormal believers, that verged on mocking the elderly. These stupid old people! hah hah hah! They will believe anything! My one data point was irrevocably distasteful. I should know better but I moved on to other, less self-satisfied podcasts. This may have been a one-off event.

Also, maybe I am more judgemental about British podcasts due to their accents? Maybe it is a question of taste, a poorly-defined and nebulous set of impressions and opinions? Maybe I am wrong? I have been known, on occasion, to be wrong. Just don't tell my staff team.  ;)

Having said that, I love No Such Thing as a Fish. I even love it when they are mistaken about something (which is not that uncommon). They always seem to be laughing at themselves, at the world and at humanity in general. It is irreverent and funny.
'The little, stupid differences are nothing next to the big, stupid similarities'
Bart Simpson

Offline mjtoal

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2015, 02:06:26 PM »

Also, maybe I am more judgemental about British podcasts due to their accents? Maybe it is a question of taste, a poorly-defined and nebulous set of impressions and opinions? Maybe I am wrong? I have been known, on occasion, to be wrong. Just don't tell my staff team.  ;)



Cox has a Manc/Lancashire accent, which is actually pretty working class sounding. The humour is quite British, so greater use of sarcasm than US stuff usually has, but I think it strikes the right balance.

Offline starnado

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2015, 05:03:03 PM »

Also, maybe I am more judgemental about British podcasts due to their accents? Maybe it is a question of taste, a poorly-defined and nebulous set of impressions and opinions? Maybe I am wrong? I have been known, on occasion, to be wrong. Just don't tell my staff team.  ;)



Cox has a Manc/Lancashire accent, which is actually pretty working class sounding. The humour is quite British, so greater use of sarcasm than US stuff usually has, but I think it strikes the right balance.
I am from London and I went to Manchester Uni so yeah, I agree, he has no airs and graces. It was just a feeling, a sense of a superiority complex. The first time I wrote about it I presented it as if I was actually just jealous of his brain. It was half in jest but I still find him just a tiny bit irritating. And I am jealous of him.
'The little, stupid differences are nothing next to the big, stupid similarities'
Bart Simpson

Offline Friendly Angel

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2015, 07:31:44 PM »
I am from London and I went to Manchester Uni so yeah, I agree, he has no airs and graces. It was just a feeling, a sense of a superiority complex.

Brian Cox reminds me of a young Peter Noone from Herman and the Hermits.





Can't you just hear the ukelele?

Amend and resubmit.

Offline starnado

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #12 on: January 31, 2015, 04:14:16 AM »
Classic!
'The little, stupid differences are nothing next to the big, stupid similarities'
Bart Simpson

Offline starnado

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2015, 04:59:19 AM »
Eating my words  :words: :munch: :fu:

Alright, so Infinite Monkey Cage is really good, mmmkay? I have got over myself. Brian Cox is fab, Robin Ince is not smarmy at all, the guests are well chosen and generally quite erudite. Good podcast. Sorry for the aspersions.

I have run out of other stuff for the moment so I am caning their back catalogue.
'The little, stupid differences are nothing next to the big, stupid similarities'
Bart Simpson

Offline Plastiq

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Re: Podcast recommendation
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2015, 07:04:58 AM »
Eating my words  :words: :munch: :fu:

Alright, so Infinite Monkey Cage is really good, mmmkay? I have got over myself. Brian Cox is fab, Robin Ince is not smarmy at all, the guests are well chosen and generally quite erudite. Good podcast. Sorry for the aspersions.

Fuck that—the prerogative to inappropriately rail against stuff when you're in a bad mood or something, then change your mind, is one of the joys of life. :D

I have run out of other stuff for the moment so I am caning their back catalogue.

I smashed through it depressingly quickly. Really one of the better shows on my list.