Go Fact Yourself

Twice a month, host J. Keith van Straaten and co-host Helen Hong bring together the smartest celebrities they know and make them look dumb...and then smart again! Recorded before a live audience in downtown Los Angeles, this game show features comedians, actors and musicians answering arcane questions on topics they claim to be experts in. But don't worry, if they slip up, there are real experts on hand to give us the facts!

If you're in the Los Angeles area and would like to be in the audience for a podcast taping, get your free ticket at http://www.gofactyourpod.com!

Ep. 45: Go Fact Yourself with Peter Sagal & Rebecca Makkai

| 0 comments
Bob Schwartz, Helen Hong, Peter Sagal, J. Keith van Straaten, Rebecca Makkai
Guests: 
Peter Sagal & Rebecca Makkai
Guests: 
Gov. Madeleine May Kunin & Bob Schwartz

It’s another helping of Go Fact Yourself in Chicago, now more delicious and savory than ever!

Peter Sagal is the host of the NPR program "Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me!" But his experience with trivia shows goes all the way back to when he was a contestant on “Jeopardy”… and quickly found himself in the negative dollars. That doesn’t mean he’s bad at trivia; he’s just bad at pressing buttons. He’ll tell us about that and why he’s so dedicated to disrupting the narrative of Chicago deep-dish pizza.

Opposite Peter is author Rebecca Makkai. Her book The Great Believers earned her the distinction of being a finalist for the Pulitzer prize. It’s a truly special accomplishment -- but she had an even bigger dream as a child: teaching dogs how to talk.

The guests will discuss the local food scene, whether or not a hot dog is a sandwich and, yes, a lot of discussion about the windy city.

What’s the Difference: The Windy City

What’s the difference between a hurricane and a typhoon?

What’s the difference between a tornado watch and a tornado warning?

Areas of Expertise

Peter Sagal: Chicago food culture, James Cameron movies and running

Rebecca Makkai: The film Clue, the state of Vermont and the furnace girl murder of Lake Bluff, Illinois

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Peter Sagal and Rebecca Makkai

Peter Sagal
Rebecca Makkai

With guest experts:

Gov. Madeleine May Kunin, author, ambassador and three-term governor of Vermont.


Peter Sagal and Bob Schwartz

Bob Schwartz, Senior Vice President of Vienna Beef and author of the book Never Put Ketchup on a Hot Dog.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at Sleeping Village in Chicago.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Come to our next live tapings in Los Angeles on Sunday, October 13 -- Go to gofactyourpod.com for FREE tickets!

Ep. 44: Go Fact Yourself with Bill Kurtis & Sarah Spain

| 0 comments
John Ullinskey, Helen Hong, Bill Kurtis, J. Keith van Straaten, Sarah Spain
Guests: 
Bill Kurtis & Sarah Spain
Guests: 
Jill Sweeney & John Ullinskey

It’s the first episode of Go Fact Yourself from Chicago!

Two-time Peabody Award winner Bill Kurtis is a news anchor with one of the most famous voices in television and radio. You may have heard him as the scorekeeper for the program "Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me!", but he’s also known for his narration in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. He’ll explain how that role changed his life forever and share other stories from his extensive career.

Bill will compete with his fellow broadcaster and fellow Peabody Award winner Sarah Spain, host and contributor for ESPN. She’s often seen on the sports debate show "Around the Horn." She’ll tell us how she crafts an effective argument on the show and how she’s battling the negativity that comes with being a woman in the sports industry. Also, doggies!

The guests will answer questions about war veterans, improv comedy characters and the windy city.

What’s the Difference: Cubs & White Sox

What’s the difference between a Cub Scout and a Boy Scout?

What’s the difference between stitching and darning?

Areas of Expertise

Bill Kurtis: Frank Sinatra’s big band music, World War II in Okinawa and the prairie

Sarah Spain: Rescue dogs, 90’s "Saturday Night Live" characters and grammar.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Bill Kurtis & Sarah Spain

Bill Kurtis
Sarah Spain

With guest experts:

Julia Sweeney, actor and comedian who’s appeared in four seasons of "Saturday Night Live."


John Ullinskey & Bill Kurtis

John Ullinskey, WWII veteran who served aboard the USS Arikara and participated in the D-Day Invasion and the Battle of Okinawa

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at Sleeping Village in Chicago.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Ep. 43: Go Fact Yourself with Jena Friedman & Jack O’Brien

| 0 comments
Tracy Newman, Jena Friedman, J. Keith van Straaten, Jack O'Brien, Phyllis Katz, Helen Hong, Carl Gottlieb
Guests: 
Jack O'Brien & Jena Friedman
Guests: 
Tracy Newman, Phyllis Katz and Carl Gottlieb

This episode of Go Fact Yourself features quick wits and facts about hit flicks!

Jena Friedman is a comedian and longtime contributor to television, perhaps her best known work was as a producer on "The Daily Show." She’ll talk about how she was so dedicated to her work on the show that she was willing to risk her life if it meant getting the shot that she needed. Jena’s new series "Soft Focus" is on Adult Swim.

Jena’s opponent is Jack O’Brien, co-host of "The Daily Zeitgeist" podcast. Before that, he was the co-founder of Cracked.com. How did he turn the website into such a success? Well, he decided to take everything that worked about the original Cracked magazine… and completely ignore it. He’ll explain.

The guests will take a deep dive into the lore of the Jaws franchise, the history of comedy and why it is never a good idea to take a bath at a funeral.

What’s the Difference: Emergency

What’s the difference between a fire engine and a fire truck?

What’s the difference between a pandemic and an epidemic?

Areas of Expertise

Jena Friedman: The TV show "Ghostwriter," the history of improv and the ebola virus.

Jack O’Brien: The film Jaws 2, the film Rocky IV and Wu-Tang Clan solo records from 1993 to 1997.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong
Jena Friedman
Jack O’Brien

With guest experts:


Tracy Newman, Phyllis Katz and Jena Friedman

Phyllis Katz and Tracy Newman, original company members of The Groundlings improv theater.


Jack O’Brien and Carl Gottlieb

Carl Gottlieb, Screenwriter of Jaws and author of The Jaws Log.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Go Fact Yourself with Jim Rash, Jill-Michele Melean, Adam Conover & Jenny Jaffe!

| 0 comments
Date: 
10/13/2019 - 17:00 - 21:00
City: 
Los Angeles
Venue Name: 
Angel City Brewery

216 Alameda Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Tickets are free when you RSVP HERE.

Join us for a live taping of Go Fact Yourself, a game show podcast from J. Keith van Straaten, Jim Newman, and Maximum Fun. Go Fact Yourself features comedians, actors and musicians answering arcane questions on topics they claim to be experts in. But don't worry, if they slip up, there are real experts on hand to give us the facts!

Hosts: J. Keith van Straaten & Helen Hong!

Guests:

5:00pm: Jill-Michele Melean and Adam Conover

7:00pm: Jim Rash and Jenny Jaffe!

Please note, lineup is subject to change.

Go Fact Yourself with Greg Behrendt & Quinn Cummings!

| 0 comments
Date: 
09/30/2019 - 20:00 - 21:30
City: 
Los Angeles, CA
Venue Name: 
Center for Inquiry West

2535 W Temple St
Los Angeles, CA 90026

Tickets are free when you RSVP HERE.

Join us at the Center for Inquiry for a live taping of Go Fact Yourself, a game show podcast from J. Keith van Straaten, Jim Newman, and Maximum Fun. Go Fact Yourself features comedians, actors and musicians answering arcane questions on topics they claim to be experts in. But don't worry, if they slip up, there are real experts on hand to give us the facts!

Hosts: J. Keith van Straaten & Helen Hong!

Guests:

8:00pm: Greg Behrendt & Quinn Cummings!

Please note, lineup is subject to change.

Ep. 42: Go Fact Yourself with Jim Beaver & Erica Rhodes

| 0 comments
Dr. Betsy Bogart, J. Keith van Straaten, Erica Rhodes, Helen Hong, Jim Beaver
Guests: 
Jim Beaver & Erica Rhodes
Guests: 
Dr. Stephen Brumwell & Dr. Betsy Bogart

C’est l’heure pour un nouvel épisode de Go Fact Yourself*! (In case your French is a little rusty: It’s time for a new episode of Go Fact Yourself!)

Jim Beaver is an actor who’s known for his roles in TV shows like, "Breaking Bad," and, "Justified," where he’s earned a reputation as a "tough guy"-type who’s usually associated with guns. He’s also done a lot of research on major Hollywood figures from other eras. He’ll explain why he didn’t let the technological limitations from his youth get in the way of his research of actor John Garfield. Jim Beaver can be seen in the final season of "Supernatural".

Jim will face off against Erica Rhodes, who’s currently tearing it up on NBC’s "Bring The Funny" and who had a memorable turn on "Modern Family". She’s been involved in show-business since she was 10 as a voice on the radio-drama "Prairie Home Companion". Erica’s newest comedy album is "Sad Lemon" and she’ll explain how she settled on the title after a little crowdsourcing.

The guests will discuss classic musicals set in France, American traitors and the finer aspects of going Dutch.

What’s the Difference: Going Dutch

What’s the difference between Holland and The Netherlands?

What’s the difference between a levee and a dike?

Areas of Expertise

Jim Beaver: Benedict Arnold, movies based on Raymond Chandler novels and "Adventures of Superman"

Erica Rhodes: The film The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, philosopher Friedrich Neitzsche, and the poet William Wordsworth.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Jim Beaver and Erica Rhodes

Jim Beaver
Erica Rhodes

With guest experts:

Dr. Stephen Brumwell, award-winning author of several books on American history.


Dr. Betsy Bogart and Erica Rhodes

Dr. Betsy Bogart, singer and Film Studies teacher at UCLA.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Ep. 41: Go Fact Yourself with Jamie Kennedy & Melissa McQueen

| 0 comments
Jamie Kennedy, J. Keith van Straaten, Melissa McQueen, Helen Hong, Grant Rosenmeyer
Guests: 
Jamie Kennedy & Melissa McQueen
Guests: 
Brian Dunning & Grant Rosenmeyer

Go Fact Yourself is coming to Chicago! Join us on August 9 & 10 at Sleeping Village. Visit gofactyourpod.com for tickets and details.

Our patented mind-control techniques compel you to hear this episode of Go Fact Yourself!

Jamie Kennedy is a comedian and actor. He’s spent most of his life working in film and television with some big names like Frank Oz and David O. Russell. But how did he decide that he wanted to spend his life in Hollywood? It all goes back to his minor background role in a classic Robin Williams film. Jamie Kennedy can be seen in the upcoming film Ad Astra.

Jamie will face off against a frequent collaborator of his: comedian Melissa McQueen. These days, she’s known for wearing sequins and sparkly outfits while performing on comedy stages across the country. But she’ll tell us about how she used to work to help other people perform on stage… as a karaoke KJ.

The guests will chat about government secrets, child-actors and the value of passing on deceased relatives' clothing.

What’s the Difference: Impostors

What’s the difference between "duplicate" and "replicate?"

What’s the difference between a robot and an android?

Areas of Expertise

Jamie Kennedy: The MK Ultra conspiracy, pacemakers and lyrics to the Big Bopper song "Chantilly Lace."

Melissa McQueen: Lyrics from the Hall & Oates album Rock & Soul Part 1, the film The Royal Tenenbaums and The Pizzagate Conspiracy.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Jamie Kennedy and Melissa McQueen

Jamie Kennedy
Melissa McQueen

With guest experts:

Brian Dunning, science writer and host of the award-winning "Skeptoid Podcast".


Melissa McQueen and Grant Rosenmeyer

Grant Rosenmeyer, producer and actor who’s appeared on Broadway, film and television.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Go Fact Yourself live in CHICAGO with guest Peter Sagal!

| 0 comments
Date: 
08/10/2019 - 21:00 - 22:00
City: 
Chicago, IL
Venue Name: 
Sleeping Village

3734 W. Belmont Ave.
Chicago, IL 60618

Tickets: http://bit.ly/FactU2

DOORS: 8PM | SHOW: 9PM | 21+

Join us for a live taping of Go Fact Yourself, a game show podcast from J. Keith van Straaten, Jim Newman, and Maximum Fun. Go Fact Yourself features comedians, actors and musicians answering arcane questions on topics they claim to be experts in. But don’t worry, if they slip up, there are real experts on hand to give us the facts!

Hosts: J. Keith van Straaten & Helen Hong!
Guests: Peter Sagal + TBA

Please note, lineup is subject to change. Seating is limited and first come, first served.

Go Fact Yourself Live in CHICAGO with guests Bill Kurtis and Sarah Spain!

| 0 comments
Date: 
08/09/2019 - 21:00 - 22:00
City: 
Chicago, IL
Venue Name: 
Sleeping Village

3734 W. Belmont Ave.
Chicago, IL 60618

Tickets: bit.ly/FactU

DOORS: 8PM | SHOW: 9PM | 21+

Join us for a live taping of Go Fact Yourself, a game show podcast from J. Keith van Straaten, Jim Newman, and Maximum Fun. Go Fact Yourself features comedians, actors and musicians answering arcane questions on topics they claim to be experts in. But don’t worry, if they slip up, there are real experts on hand to give us the facts!

Host: J. Keith van Straaten & Helen Hong!
Guests: Bill Kurtis vs Sarah Spain

Ep. 40: Go Fact Yourself with Anthony Rapp & Jessica McKenna

| 0 comments
Helen Hong, Stephen Park, J. Keith van Straaten, Anthony Rapp, Cristela Alonzo, Jessica McKenna, Rory O'Malley
Guests: 
Anthony Rapp & Jessica McKenna
Guests: 
Rory O'Malley, Stephen Park & Helen Hong
Guests: 
Cristela Alonzo

Go Fact Yourself is coming to Chicago! Join us on August 9 & 10 at Sleeping Village. Visit gofactyourpod.com for tickets and details.

Cristela Alonzo is a comedian and former guest on Go Fact Yourself. This week, she’s stepping in as the co-host! Her new book "Music to My Years" will be out in October.

Jessica McKenna is known for the podcast "Off Book" where she and her co-host Zach Reino improvise a full musical with special guests… even if the guests aren’t totally aware of what’s going on when they first join the program. Jessica is also a voice-artist who’s cornered a very specific portrayal: scrappy ten-year-old boys. She’ll explain what’s behind her expertise.

Jessica will face off against someone who also knows a lot about musicals: actor Anthony Rapp. He was part of the original cast of Rent and now stars on the CBS show "Star Trek: Discovery." You could say he’s a pretty accomplished guy, but he’ll tell us about his formative years where he got some unsolicited advice from legendary stage actor Yul Brynner.

The guests will also discuss American presidents, contemporary films and denim jackets.

What’s the Difference: Pay me back

What’s the difference between "loan" and "lend?"

What’s the difference between a charge card and a credit card?

Areas of Expertise

Jessica McKenna: American Presidents, the musical Hamilton and Christmas & Christmas movies

Anthony Rapp: The Coen Brothers movies, the Chicago Cubs baseball team from the early 2000’s to the present and the Mass Effect video-game series.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Cristela Alonzo
Jessica McKenna
Anthony Rapp

With guest experts:


Jessica McKenna and Rory O'Malley

Rory O’Malley, Tony Award-nominated actor who’s performed in the stage shows Hamilton and The Book of Mormon.


Helen Hong, Stephen Park and Anthony Rapp

Stephen Park, actor who’s known for his performances in the films Fargo and Do the Right Thing.

Helen Hong, comedian and actress who appeared in the film Inside Llewyn Davis and who’s the regular co-host of Go Fact Yourself!

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.