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"All About Steve"

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Why am I posting a trailer for a Sandra Bullock movie? The answer, at least for MaxFunsters in the know, is around the 1:50 mark.

David Malki ! Creator of "Wondermark" Interview on The Sound of Young America

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Show: 
Bullseye


David Malki ! (who really spells his name with an exclamation mark) is the creator of the comic strip Wondermark. He isolates woodcuts and engravings from 19th century periodicals, then alters them to create a surreal and hilarious gag strip. His first collection of the strip is called "Beards of Our Forefathers," and features extensive context for the strips, including faux advertisements and more.

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If you enjoyed this show, try these:
Chris Onstad
Tony Millionaire
Jack Handey

"The Noises Rest"

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"The Noises Rest" from lonelysandwich on Vimeo.

Our friends at You Look Nice Today have created a truly spectacular short film for a little institution called The Museum of Modern Art in a little town called New York City.

Gymkata, Starring Two-Time World Champion Kurt Thomas

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"WHEN GYMNASTICS AND KARATE ARE FUSED, THE COMBUSTION BECOMES AN EXPLOSION."

Gymkata is a movie in which World Champion Gymnast Kurt Thomas is locked in a Deadly Game in the nation of Parmistan, to save the life of his father, who was in the CIA or something. He has to fight a lot of Crazies in The Village of the Crazies, but the good news is, there's a pommel horse at the end of the alley, so that helps a lot.

If you are a person who wants to see an amazing film with a group of great pals who are high or drunk, this is an excellent choice. It was recently re-released on Digital Versatile Disc, which is a great way to enjoy the film.

Patton Oswalt Writes Jason Statham Into Prestige Pictures

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Patton Oswalt has identified a key issue with America cinema: not all films feature Jason Statham, the bad-ass bald guy behind The Bank Job and a lot of movies I haven't seen, but which I bet are cool.

Patton has stood up and done something about this, using his standing in the world of Hollywood script doctors to write Statham-included versions of this year's Oscar bait.

CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON: Jason Statham injects the backward-aging man-freak with a Sino/Chilean rage compound, and they fight in lava pit.

Sino/Chilean? The man's a genius.

Chris Onstad, Creator of Achewood: Interview on The Sound of Young America

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Show: 
Bullseye

Chris Onstad is the creator of the web comic Achewood, which chronicles the lives of a group of 20-something stuffed animals. It's a surreal and hilarious strip, once named the best graphic novel of the year by Time Magazine, despite not being a graphic novel. Onstad has just published his first book collection of the strip with a major press, called "The Great Outdoor Fight."

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If you enjoyed this show, try these:
John Hodgman
Kenny Mayne
Ben Karlin

Podcast Coyle & Sharpe Episode 51: Tongue Removal

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Welcome to season two of Coyle & Sharpe: The Imposters! In the early 1960s, James P. Coyle and Mal Sharpe roamed the streets of San Francisco, microphone in hand, roping strangers into bizarre schemes and surreal stunts. These original recordings are from the Sharpe family archive, which is tended by Mal's daughter, Jennifer Sharpe. You can learn more about Coyle & Sharpe on their website or on MySpace. Their recent box set is These 2 Men Are Imposters.

On this episode: Coyle and Sharpe try to convince a man to undergo experimental surgery that would remove his tongue and exchange it with a foreign person’s in order to get rid of their accent.

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A new listening option for donors

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If you're a donor to MaximumFun.org, I've added a new way to listen to The Sound of Young America.

I've created a CD-quality feed of the show as it appears on the radio. An hour long, every week (reruns, sometimes), with intros and sometimes bits and the whole nine yards. That's how we used to do the podcast, but we switched to one-guest-at-a-time podcasting at the start of 2007. Some folks prefer the hour-a-week format, so I thought I'd offer it as a special bonus for those of you who support the shows.

If you're a donor, I just sent some information on the feed to the email address on your paypal account. If you don't use that email, drop me a line and I'll share the feed address with you.

If you're not a donor, I encourage you to give, even if it's only two bucks a month.

Podcast: Jordan, Jesse Go! Ep. 85: The Penguin Thief

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Jesse and Jordan discuss insane Japanese prank shows, Kubiak from Parker Lewis Can't Lose and more.

ACTION ITEMS:
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Call 206-984-4FUN to share your thoughts on these ACTION ITEMS.

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Our theme music: "Love You" by The Free Design, courtesy of The Free Design and Light in the Attic Records

Special sponsor this week: Simpsons Tumblr Eye on Springfield

Podthoughts by Colin Marshall: "The Dinner Party Download"

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Perhaps most Max Funsters are already bona fide dinner party animals. Your Podthinker counts himself as one — or aspires to, in an case. What better way, then, to climb the ladder toward over-the-top gourmand status than with the first podcast geared specifically toward the dinner partier: KPCC's The Dinner Party Download [iTunes link], "the show that helps you win your next dinner party." (Yes, they can be won.)

Each episode of The Dinner Party Download adheres strictly to a format. First comes the "ice breaker," a corny joke. (Personal favorite: "How do you turn a duck into a popular soul singer? Microwave it until its bill withers.") Then, in "small talk," hosts Brendan Newnam and Rico Gagliano talk to reporters — usually the ones across the hall at Marketplace — about which events of the day make for the best hors d'œuvre conversation. After that, it's "time for cocktails," where they talk about an event from the week in history and then ring up a bartender to find out how to make a drink kinda-sorta related to it. They then converse with the "guest of honor," some famous interviewee like M.C Frontalot [MP3], Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh [MP3] or filmmaker David Fincher [MP3], who seems to have fallen on creative hard times. In the "main course" that follows, they talk to foodmakers about food: fancy peanut-butter sandwiches [MP3], rare-bird delicacies [MP3], that sort of thing. Finally, there's "one for the road, a song to play on your way to or departing from your dinner party."

A pretty solid set of features, to be sure, but what's most fascinating is, in this jungly world of podcasts, how... public radio-y the show sounds. It's got everything public radio stations seem convinced will attract new blood to the listenership — young, just-laid-back-dudes hosts; semi-ironic pop cultural references; chats with artists that those twentysomethings seem to love — but it also retains the trappings that, unconsciously included, identify it to other, non-public-radio podcasts as Not One of Us. First and foremost, every segment noted in the above paragraph is crammed into about fifteen minutes, causing that rushed-along feeling one knows (and probably doesn't love) from all stripes of traditional radio. This takes a serious toll on the interviews, which feel as if they run about twelve seconds and are conducted using the same two questions every time ("What are you sick of being asked?" and "Tell us something we don't know about yourself"). As a hardcore fan and creator of the interview form (and one who considers the sub-30-minute interview to be essentially worthless), your Podthinker is pained by this.

Second, after having listened to hundreds of honest, mumbly podcaster voices, the interaction between Rico and Brendan — indeed, between most professional public radio hosts — sounds suspiciously polished, like it's the fifth or sixth rehearsed take. And third: please, public radio producers, take this to heart: there's no need to wedge a music bed under everything. There are many answers to your problems; music beds are not among them.

Vital stats:
Format: cultural variety
Running since: July 2008
Duration: ~15m
Frequency: biweekly, roughly
Archive available on iTunes: four months

[High-priced Podsultant Colin Marshall accepts all offers at colinjmarshall at gmail. Discuss Podthoughts on the forum here or submit your own podcast for the next by-Max-Funsters column here.]

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