I’m one of the last to add my voice to the chorus of supporters for the Ricky Gervais show. The round-headed object of ridicule on the show, Karl Pilkington, is the focus of a neat little Times piece. (signup required, or just bugmenot it)
Karl Pilkington has debated the merits of eating a kangaroo’s penis for breakfast, envisioned a wristwatch that counts down the time left in a person’s life and proposed a new population control system in which elderly women give birth at the moment of their deaths. He has mused on topics ranging from caveman “bear pants” to dishwashers on Mars, and reported “news stories” about the triumphs of chimpanzees as bricklayers and television talk show hosts. In so doing, Mr. Pilkington, a 33-year-old unemployed radio producer from Manchester, England, has become the object of a global Internet cult, a Guinness world record-holder and the unlikely harbinger of a technological revolution.
The Gervais show is going pay, and the success or failure of the gambit will be closely watched by podcasters like myself. Personally, I don’t have much interest in charging for The Sound, but I do have an interest in quitting my real-life job and working on the show full-time. Or even just making some money for it. Or even not losing so much money on it.
The trick of pay media, of course, is that for entertainment, you pretty much have to be famous first. So maybe I should get famous the way Neil Hamburger suggested on last week’s show. “Some sort of strangling, or poisoning, or maybe becoming a vegetable like that woman in Florida.”
Also… here’s a little audio interview of Gervais by Mark Ramsey of Radio Marketing Nexus, about how to make something great.