Pop My Culture



The Thrilling Adventure Hour on Pop My Culture Podcast

Cole, Vanessa and some of the outstanding cast of The Thrilling Adventure Hour–writers Ben Acker and Ben Blacker, and actors Marc Evan Jackson (“Funny or Die Presents…”), Colin Hanks (“The Good Guys”) and James Urbaniak (“The Venture Bros.”)–talk insensitive Twittering, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, The Real Housewives, Drones, KWOD 106.5, The Bachelor, Racehorses vs Indie Bands, Tom Leykis, getting a case of the “Shreves,” outer space Rom-Coms, Sparks Nevada: Marshal on Mars, a dramatic reading from the book of Rebecca Black, and Urbaniak’s decade-old Aflac audition.

Tell us your answer to the “Firsts” question (the first radio program or show you were really into) in the comments section for a chance to win:

THIS Thrilling Adventure Hour poster signed by all five of our guests plus the rest of the cast from the April 2nd, 2011 show–that’s right, you get John Hancocks from:

Ben Acker / Ben Blacker / Colin Hanks / Marc Evan Jackson / James Urbaniak / Ed Helms / Joshua Malina / Linda Cardellini / Dana Gould / Andrew Daly / John DiMaggio / Busy Phillips / John Ennis / Mark Gagliardi / Hal Lublin / Aaron Ginsburg / Sara Watkins / Sean Watkins / Craig Cackowski / Annie Savage / Andy Paley!

Freshly Popped



Ben Acker, Ben Blacker, Marc Evan Jackson, Colin Hanks, and James Urbaniak on PMC Podcast


  • Comment by Mattamatics — March 23, 2011 @ 10:57 am

    Great show – had me laughing in my cubicle the whole time!

    The first radio show type thing I can remember REALLY enjoying was the BBC radio broadcast of Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

  • Comment by Brian — March 23, 2011 @ 11:53 am

    Without a doubt, “The Dr. Demento Show” was the first radio I was excited each week to listen to.

    I begged my mom to stay up for it, and it somehow seemed to matter to me what position “Pencil Necked Geek” or “Existential Blues” might be week to week.

    Still have a soft spot for novelty records since.

  • Comment by Tim — March 23, 2011 @ 2:37 pm

    Definitely the Dr. Demento show. It didn’t even air in my area, so I had to listen to the garbled internet feed. This was back in ’96, too, when RealAudio was the lone online streaming service (meeeemoooriiieeesss…). I even joined his fan club, and got an autographed headshot of the man himself and copies of his Basement Tapes (basically a yearly “Greatest Hits” compilation). In retrospect, not only did it really help to establish my love of comedy, it also introduced me to independent record labels (since most of the folks Demento played self-distributed). Without Dr. Demento, I probably wouldn’t have gained an appreciation for the smartassed and bizarre in music that led me to discover bands like DEVO and the Dead Kennedys (when everyone else my age was listening to the Backstreet Boys and NSYNC).

  • Comment by Rob — March 23, 2011 @ 8:52 pm

    The first radio show I was really excited about was “Those Were the Days” it was a show that played old-time radio shows. It played everything to “The Jack Benny Show” to “Our Miss Brooks” and “Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar”. I listened to this in grade school. It was taken off the air a few months later. Thanks to the Internet I can hear the classic audio theater as well as the ones companies like “The Thrilling Adventure & Supernatural Suspense Hour” are making.

  • Comment by Frank Pulaski — March 23, 2011 @ 11:01 pm

    My 1st radio show would also be “A Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy”, which I listened to with a stinky hippie in a stinky van in Portland(OR), on cassette tapes, circa 1997. In 2005 I found recordings of the original series (1 & 2) and the 2003-4 series(3, 4 and 5). I have listened to them 42 times each 🙂 and listen to them at least once a year. My favorite of all time.

    I would also like to submit X-Minus One, a 1950’s science fiction radio drama series (it was called Dimension X for it’s initial run). Also a very favorite. Since 2004, I have listened to every episode in it’s 3 year run multiple times…treat yourself if you have not.

    “The Thrilling Adventure Hour” reminds me of these shows and the art of the radio drama of the 50’s. I am ecstatic that us outworlders can enjoy the show. Also, loved the episode! Duh, Winning!

  • Comment by NL — March 24, 2011 @ 11:46 pm

    Great episode! I love that the most recent eps have had a more pop culture-y focus.

    When I was a little girl, I listened to Tom Schnieder’s radio show as I fell asleep. I don’t remember what he was like or talked about, I just liked the sound of his voice, I suppose.

    My dad had a pretty long commute. If Mom wanted the car for the day, we all had to get up pretty early (5:30 ish) to take Dad to work then get home before school. We would listen to the Don Squad, hosted by Don Vogel. (This was a radio show in Milwaukee.) I don’t remember much about the show — it was a basic “wacky morning show.” The theme music was “Louie Louie” — when I heard the song as a normal song, I was blown away. (Context!)

    I never really listened to radio “shows.” As a teen, I listened to Top 40 with Kasey Casem, and the shows on the cool alternative music station (99X, Atlanta). And Mom would make me listen to Dr. Laura.

    This was a fun question!

  • Comment by Brett Dyer — March 26, 2011 @ 11:49 pm

    This was an amazing episode.(as always) The first radio show I remember listening to was Todd-n-Tyler in the morning when I was in middle school. Not only was it funny, it was basically all there was… Kansas radio lacks.

  • Comment by Marc Hershon — April 5, 2011 @ 1:05 pm

    Loved this ‘cast! First radio show I was hooked on was “The Old Time Radio Hour” on KSFO in San Francisco back when I was in junior high. I was about 12 or 13 and had no idea that there WERE old radio shows like The Shadow, X Minus One, Escape, etc. This was back in 1971-72 and the show was on at 11 PM, so I had to listen to it via a transistor radio shoved under my pillow. That, and Comedy Hour which preceded it, are the two shows that got me on a path to a radio career, which I was in for six years before moving into the world of comedy.

  • Comment by Trish — April 5, 2011 @ 1:18 pm

    Don’t know if this counts, but I’d listen to WLW sports radio shows. I loved to fall asleep to the play-by-play of Cinci Red’s games, The Big Red Machine, by the soothing voices of Joe Nuxhall and Marty Brennaman. I can’t believe I remember their names!
    After that, Prairie Home Companion, classic.

  • Comment by Greg — April 5, 2011 @ 1:42 pm

    The CBS Radio Mystery Theater was the first radio show that really grabbed my interest — both interesting and imaginative, it had a quality and range that were astonishing, considering the number of episodes they put out. E.G. Marshall was a terrific host. It was my gateway into Old Time Radio. Thrilling Adventure Hour does with comedy what CBSRMT did with suspense and the macabre. It will be long and lovingly remembered!

  • Comment by Brendan — April 5, 2011 @ 4:28 pm

    Oh boy, here goes nothing. My first “radio program” I dug the shit out of was on Radio Disney. I’d only listen in the car on days my mom picked me up from school. It’d be like an audio drama of old Disney movies. Week by week they’d describe a little bit of 101 Dalmatians and others. I kind of want to listen to it now. Wish I knew the name!

  • Comment by Mary — April 5, 2011 @ 6:18 pm

    I still want to hire James Urbaniak to follow me around and narrate my life, but a poster would be fantastic!
    I am AFRAID to answer this question because it will make me sound like SUCH A PERV but I was a prisoner of private school and it was like Christmas every night when I discovered Sexually Speaking with Dr. Ruth Westheimer was on regular radio late at night when I was 13 or 14! I would put it on verrrry quietly and feel all decadent and evil even though I had NO IDEA what she was even talking about. I just loved her little voice and the fact that this lady who sounded about 80 years old was talking about sex in a thick accent on the RADIO. I still remember “Hhello! This is Dr. ROOSE VESTHEIMER and ZIS! is SEXUALLY SPEAKIG!” Basically I knew about sex before I even knew about sex. Go, me!

  • Comment by Lisa — April 5, 2011 @ 10:38 pm

    Great show! Okay, I can’t possibly win the contest on this, but just because I’ve never admitted it in a public forum: I grew up in ’80s Iowa with parents who only listened to country music or “oldies” from the ’50s and ’60s. I did not know radio could be anything BUT that until I was a teenager and discovered the likes of Ace of Base and Savage Garden on nightly pop music popularity countdowns. By then I was clearly on a downward spiral.

    Anyway, literally the only person I remember ever speaking over the radio waves and not singing — throughout my entire youth and possibly young adulthood, mind you — was Paul Harvey. My parents listened to him every time he was on, and I thought he was the only person ever allowed to tell stories ever, like the nation just collectively sent its stories in to Paul Harvey every week and said, “Here. You’ve got an okay voice. Convey them to the people, k?”

    I pictured him as looking like Santa Claus. I am still traumatized that he did not. Yes, I was sheltered. Good day.

  • Comment by Valorie — April 6, 2011 @ 6:54 pm

    The first radio show I was into was a college radio show called The Miles Longer and Naked Dave Show. It was just a couple of college dudes talking to their friends and bullshitting around. Not really sure there was a premise, except the first episode I ever listened to, they talked about religion and then decided to see how long they could do the show. I think Naked Dave ended up just going home.

    RIP Miles Longer.

  • Comment by Pam — April 6, 2011 @ 7:24 pm

    My first radio show was This American Life. I love the different themes that are discussed each with with each story. They either make me laugh, cry, get angry, and everything in between. Each act I feel like I’m learning something new. The show was my first and still one of my favorite radio shows.

  • Comment by Shannon — April 8, 2011 @ 1:01 pm

    I first got into comedy via my dad’s Firesign Theatre records, which are basically radio dramas on vinyl. But that led me to Doctor Demento, of course. The original, incomparable Dr. Demento.

    I enjoy “A Prairie Home Companion,” but it’s a little dry for my taste, which is why I’m glad I found TAH on iTunes. So daggum good!

  • Comment by Sarah — May 9, 2011 @ 1:02 pm

    I was obsessed with the radio as a kid — specifically, 102.5 in Sacramento, which at the time played a lot of Boyz II Men and TLC. A guy named (I think) Davey D did a show at night which got “pretty deep;” my 11 year-old self listened to it religiously.

  • Comment by Debi Henson — May 9, 2011 @ 1:11 pm

    I was raised in a two language household, and the only radio I heard was “A Voz Portuguesa” until I was 12 or 13. I had a portable transistor radio where I discovered Rock ‘n’ Roll: The Carpenters, etc. My favorite radio show had to be Dr. Demento, which I discovered while ‘parking’ with my boyfriend at night. We picked it up from an L.A. station (AM radio). Having been raised in a very strict, conservative home, I was blown away when I heard Weird Al Yankovic for the first time! A poster of y’all would be a nice addition to the garage wall…

  • Comment by miss dapper — May 9, 2011 @ 1:24 pm

    The first radio show I really liked was Nights with Alice Cooper. I didn’t care about the music much, as it was the same dull mix of classic rock that I’d been forcefed since childhood, but it was actually a very funny and joyful show, full of the splashy, winking delight in the macabre that Alice Cooper was famous for. They would even play the audio of the scene in Freaks & Geeks where the guidance counselor played “I’m Eighteen,” which was the coolest thing because I loved that show so much when I was a preteen and had no way to access it until I was several years older. Nights was especially great on Halloween, because Elvira would show up.

  • Comment by t2ed — May 9, 2011 @ 1:25 pm

    I was really into the Star Wars radio productions. Yes, the geek doesn’t fall far from the tree.

  • Comment by BoxingMarco — May 9, 2011 @ 1:31 pm

    Well, the first program I got into is TalkRadar. It’s basically a hillariously drunken podcast about video games, each week they would discuss about what has happened that week and get progressively more hammered as it goes on. I still listen to it!

  • Comment by John John The Bastard — May 9, 2011 @ 2:01 pm

    The first radio show I fell in love with was called “Knock On Wood” It starred Steve Charney and his ventriloquist dummy named Harry. They used to broadcast on WAMC, which was amongst other things our local NPR affiliate in West Stockbridge, MA. I was 6 or 7 at the time so it all sounded perfectly logical to me.

  • Comment by Shari — May 9, 2011 @ 2:15 pm

    While certainly a Demento devotee, I discovered radio plays as a kid listening to the KNX Drama Hour which played all sorts of stuff from yesteryear (til it went off the air!) Used to fall asleep to it except the really scary ones which kept me awake. As a result I now get a huge kick out of Thrilling Adventure Hour as it mixes comedy and quirk and lovely actors with radio plays… Which I can go see live!! Hooray!! only wish I knew it existed before this year! Thank you to podcasts circuitously leading to other podcasts which led me to the discovery!

  • Comment by Micheal "the acehole' Hunt — May 9, 2011 @ 4:50 pm

    First radio program I heard was Bob and Ray! Love the old stuff!

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