"The most bizarre and often saddest talk show in New York City."
June 1, 2016 12:06 PM   Subscribe

I'm nearly done with his WTF interview and I'm really excited to dig into this. I've been hearing about his show for a long time now from friends that watched it during its Public Access days, and I'm really sorry I kept dismissing it. Thanks for compiling all of these!
posted by lownote at 12:25 PM on June 1, 2016

Never heard of him, but loved the WTF. Thanks.
posted by C.A.S. at 12:34 PM on June 1, 2016

He also has a great podcast called 'Beautiful Stories from Anonymous People', where he takes a phone call from a stranger who stays anonymous and talks with them for up to an hour. Chris is not allowed to hang up, but the stranger is. And oh, the stories are beautiful.
posted by katta at 1:02 PM on June 1, 2016 [5 favorites]

I've been watching a lot of this lately. The trying-hard-twee-ness makes me hold my nose a little, but Gethard clearly understands that sometimes a positive mental attitude is a matter of life and death, and I respect that. Also this show really does make it to gates of True Weirdness at times, and I respect that, too. After all, you don't make it if you don't try. Beautiful / Anonymous is really good, too. Very uncomfortable but oddly reassuring at the same time.
posted by zchyrs at 2:20 PM on June 1, 2016 [1 favorite]

Got the chance to be on his show playing w/ Wheatus back when he was doing cable access. It was a weird but fantastic experience. That dude is something else.
posted by grumpybear69 at 2:51 PM on June 1, 2016

Hey, my college-era roommate works on this show! Glad to hear it's actually good!
posted by rorgy at 3:26 PM on June 1, 2016 [1 favorite]

I have only seen excerpts of the new show, but for a period I watched the original public access show religiously, because I deeply appreciated Chris Gethard's dedication to improvisation. You can see this in Episode 127 in which the first 15 minutes is some of the best live television I've ever seen.

You should watch it, really, although I will understand if you give up, because that first 15 minutes is a litmus test. If you have a penchant for the truly weird, like I do, you will find it amazing.

In brief: Right after the initial introduction, someone in the audience begins a chant before Chris can introduce the program. Rather then try to quiet them down, he sits and lets them chant, in fact he encourages them. Although he appears to regret this decision a few times, he is committed to seeing it through, which I admire. The thing is, it totally pays off as the musical act of the night decides to run with it, and well . . . you should just see it for yourself is what I'm saying.

Btw, the rest of that show is a pretty fine example of his "style", I'm glad it is continuing, albeit in a different format.
posted by jeremias at 7:46 PM on June 1, 2016 [1 favorite]

Interesting that both this show and Beautiful / Anonymous seem to sometimes dip into Gethard giving therapy publicly to strangers. It obviously comes from his history with depression and therapy, but it's been an unexpected use of the media. Nice to see comedy in a voice that's positive/genuine, as well as a refreshing use of "reality."

(Chris also has a great appearance on This American Life about him being a child psychopath from ages 2-5.)
posted by little onion at 8:14 PM on June 1, 2016

Also maybe worth hearing the Diddy story: When the show was still very small and done in the basement of UCB, Gethard started a year-long Twitter campaign to get Diddy on his show. It was supposed to be a ridiculous, funny, over-the-top goal, but then they stuck with it, and eventually Diddy replied on Twitter that he would come on. (And then he didn't, and then Gethard talked his way into getting to see him when he was on SNL, and asked him in person and then he came on the show.) Diddy's appearance and the ensuing press really helped the show.
posted by little onion at 8:20 PM on June 1, 2016

I saw this guy perform with The Stepfathers so many fucking times, and each time he was so goddamn funny. Honestly, I've never seen funnier improv than The Stepfathers, and he was abso-fucking-lutely the centerpiece of that troupe. And yet ... I've never thought any of his non-improv stuff was particularly funny (except for possibly his cameos on Broad City). I feel like he's sort of destined to be forever skirting the edges of fame. But I really do wish him success in everything that he does.

Because man, is that dude fucking funny. I'm not even using hyperbole here. You should fucking see him.
posted by panama joe at 8:35 PM on June 1, 2016

The Sleep Deprivation one is amazing. If you don't start with the Broad City one, the sleepy one is a good starter. You feel like you're seeing these people at their absolute worst, and they're still pretty great.

Zchyrs, to me "twee" suggests a falseness, and I think falseness is something Gethard is desperate to avoid. You could say he's over-earnest, that he tries too hard to be "real," but... I don't know, I'm really impressed by the guy. I get the feeling like this weird little cult show is the kind of thing he really wants to do, it's no stepping stone. He doesn't want to host a more mainstream show someday, he's not dreaming about becoming the next Jay Leno. He wants to make TV for weirdos.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 8:58 PM on June 1, 2016 [1 favorite]

He has a video game, Chris Gethard's Hug-Out! (It doesn't like hugging iPads. 😔)

Also, Rolling Stone is on board.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:10 PM on June 1, 2016

Metafilter's own Capnsue on the show with her band War On Women.
posted by josher71 at 7:52 AM on June 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

« Older In Defense of Unlikable Women   |   “Yeah, and it’s big-a-me, too.” Newer »

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