While I sometimes listen to podcasts that will make me cry, I also listen to podcasts that are informative about different subjects, that provide a fannish connection to favorite books or TV shows, that review good movies or terrible movies, or that make me laugh.  Since my recent “podcast appreciation” post was about the ones that make me cry, I promised that I would balance that out with a post about some of my favorite comedy podcasts.  So here we go, just in time to generate some happy thoughts for the new year.  If you ever need an emotional pick-me-up, here’s a good place to start!

Podcasts

The Adam Carolla Show

While I’m definitely a fan of the one-on-one interviews that Adam does with different guests, my favorite episodes are the ones featuring the rest of the crew reading and discussing the news, playing games, etc.  Sometimes the hilarity content will depend on the news topics, the general vibe in the room, or the personalities of the guests (Dana Gould and Larry Miller are two of my personal favorites).  I took my boyfriend to a live recording of this podcast earlier this year, and he got a big kick out of it even though he’d never heard the show before.  So I think that means that this podcast is pretty easy to jump into at any point.

The Bugle

John Oliver of The Daily Show fame and Andy Zaltzman put an international spin on the news of the day, which means that I’m more likely to hear jokes about Silvio Berlusconi here than anywhere else.  These guys spend a lot of time cracking each other up and making each other groan.  Speaking of which, watch out for those pun runs!

Comedy Bang! Bang!

This show is hosted by Scott Aukerman and features a variety of funny guests who play themselves or play different characters.  If you’ve seen the Comedy Bang! Bang! TV show on IFC, you’ll have some idea of the comedy dynamic but the structure of the shows are different.  On most episodes of the podcast, Scott starts by talking to one guest and then their conversation is interrupted by a “surprise” drop-in guest who is a comedian with great improv skills playing a famous or not-so-famous character.  There are a lot of great guests on this show, but James Adomian and Paul F. Tompkins are two of my personal favorites.

The Long Shot Podcast

Four comedians get together and make each other laugh while they talk about their lives, their experiences performing stand-up, and different topics each episode.  The dynamic is best when Sean, Eddie, Jamie, and Amber are all there at the same time, and especially good when they have a great guest who can keep up with them.   This is one of the few podcasts that I always try to listen to as soon as the episode is downloaded because I can’t wait to hear these guys again.

Stop Podcasting Yourself

Graham Clark and Dave Shumka are frigging hilarious.  They have different comedians visit them each week, and they have a great group dynamic together.  I enjoy the way they make me laugh, and I’m a fan of their segments, especially “Overheards” and “Hulk Hogan News.”  BTW, these guys are from Vancouver, so get ready for some Canadian accents, Canadian comedians, and Canadian humor!

This Week With Larry Miller

This show has been on hiatus for several months while Larry was on the mend after a fall, but I’m happy to announce that he’ll be returning with new episodes in January!  I’ve loved Larry since I was a teenager watching his appearances on stand-up comedy shows and late-night talk shows.  Then I thought he was enormously cool on his Law & Order episodes.  And then I loved his appearances on the Adam Carolla show, and I got in on the ground floor when he got his own podcast on Carolla’s network.  Anyway, Larry is great at telling stories about his family, about his experiences acting, and about the good old days when he and his friends were “baby comics.”  Larry is one of the best comedians out there, and his podcast is always worth a listen.  I would drink to him any time, but hey … Nominem Quid Geminus?

The Todd Glass Show

HEY … IT’S TODD!  This could be called The Todd Glass Show, or it could be called The Todd Glass Experience, or it could be called Todd Glass Laughs and Sings With His Hilarious Friends.  Now, I should warn you that once in a while Todd gets serious, for bits and pieces of an episode or even (once in a while) for an entire episode.  So if he’s in the mood to talk about bullies, or homosexuality, or child-raising issues it’s not going to be funny but it is going to be both emotional and informative.  But when Todd is in funny mode, he and his friends (especially Daniel Kinno and Rory Scovel) can make me laugh a LOT.  Oh, and this show is especially notable because of its use of music and jingles.  People have written in to complain that he uses too many jingles, but those people are wrong.  I swear to George Carlin, I’ll definitely never listen to the Golden Girls theme song the same way again!