Podcasting has taken on a life of its own in recent years, with vast swathes of comedians coming forward with new interview, anecdotal and improv show formats. As this medium has grown, it has become saturated with assorted comedic content. Podcast Picks is a place for MoodyComedy’s comedy podcast recommendations.
Comedians Stevie Martin and Tessa Coates are on the long road to adulthood. Aren’t we all? Regardless of age, the feeling that we are imposters in a world where everyone else seems to know what they are doing is certainly a common phenomenon. Stevie and Tessa get it; they’ve been there, and they’re not out of the fog yet (is anyone, ever?).
Nobody Panic is a podcast that aims to take big, scary, mysterious adult topics and dismantle them into manageable, less heavy chunks to be addressed.
They approach some really difficult topics, from break ups to problems in the work place, with a light-hearted, can-do attitude. And where their advice in these areas is well-researched and reinforced by genuine personal experience, this makes room for their discussion on lighter topics to delve slightly into the realm of madness. The listener is drawn into this pair’s longterm friendship, and hearing the two crack each other up to the point of hysterics is often an episode highlight.
Both comics relish being the idiot in any given situation, and this ability to laugh at themselves is a huge selling point for the podcast. The pair are both motivational and supportive, and yet neither claims to have all, if any, of the answers.
Nobody Panic is the perfect podcast to listen to if you’re in need of a pick-me-up or simply require a dose of motivation to do that thing you said you were going to do. Martin and Coates shine a light of positivity on topics that might usually make you sigh or even shudder, with sharp wit and playful humour.
Stevie Martin is a stand-up comedian, journalist and podcaster. Fresh from performing her latest show, Hot Content,at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, Stevie is here to shed light on her first forays into comedy and writing, as well as share her opinion on video games…
1) When did you first encounter comedy?
When I was little my parents used to play The Goons tapes in the car, and when I got a bit older I’d watch videos of Reeves and Mortimer obsessively. I had a very absurdist sense of humour for a six year old and once sang ‘My Rose Has Left Me’ at a school talent show which included bellowing the line ‘She wasn’t immunised – THAT’S A LEGAL REQUIREMENT’, so it’s not surprising I got heavily bullied if I’m honest.
2) What do you really not care about?
I don’t care about video games. I really don’t think I could give less of a shit about them. I’ve tried to get into a range, you know, even fun ones like Crash Bandicoot. Or story-led ones like Red Dead. Or classic ones like Goldeneye. I think they are a massive waste of time and I get bored after a few minutes. It has nothing to do with the fact that I’m terrible at them in case you’re wondering. I downloaded that goose game yesterday and my boyfriend had to calm me down because I couldn’t pick anything up with my beak. On second thoughts it sounds like I care too much.
3) Where is your safe place?
Reading a book on the chair in my living room that my grandma gave to me. It is black leather and so in the summer if I’m wearing shorts my legs stick to it and I have to rip my skin off to get up but it’s worth it. Or reading Harry Potter anywhere. I also like being anywhere with no wifi that means I absolutely can’t continue to check my fucking phone which I do every 3.4 nanoseconds.
4) What motivates you to work hard?
Looking back aged 70 being like ‘WHY DID YOU SPEND SO LONG TRYING TO GET INTO GOLDENEYE WHEN YOU COULD HAVE WRITTEN A BOOK OR SOMETHING?’ Also when someone says something mean to me. That’s such a motivator. Once when I was a waitress, one of the regulars who apparently worked in counter-terrorism said ‘You don’t know what you’re doing, you’ll never be a writer’, so I quit waitressing and started house-sitting for a friend’s mum while looking for writers jobs. At one point I couldn’t afford food so I ate nothing but eggs out of their fridge for two days, but I got a writing job SO THERE, STUPID COUNTER TERRORISM MAN.
5) Why is comedy the right job for you?
To be honest it isn’t! I do a lot of different jobs, not just comedy, and am terrified by performing live so it sort of gives me a kick up the arse in other areas. I just like making and creating things, whether that’s an hour of comedy or a podcast (I have one called Nobody Panic) or an article (I’m a journalist) or trying to get stuff made for TV. I also want to write a book. Basically I have zero attention span and am just attempting everything that will keep me out of a 9-5 office. One day I might open an aquarium. WHO KNOWS.
6) Are you avoiding anything right now?
Yes, I’m doing a monthly new material comedy night and I need to write ten minutes and so far I’ve written the word ‘worms?’ so very excited to see how the comedy pans out. It’s incredible what I can get done when I have to write new material. My bedroom is so tidy and I’ve ironed everything.
7) Are you at all similar to your parents?
Yes. My parents like to ‘joke’ that I received all of their worst qualities combined. I worry a lot and don’t ever feel like I’m good enough, which is apparently something they recognise in themselves. There are good things though – my mum has incredible skin, is incredibly creative, and is the kindest, silliest person I’ve ever met, and my dad is the most hard-working, generous and funny person I’ve ever met so I hope and pray I have received even a tenth of those genes.
For more information, visit Stevie Martin’s website and follow her on Twitter
The popular live game show, Werewolf: Live, has recently undergone a dramatic transformation. Contestants this year are the Fringe’s own comics, rather than members of the audience (as had been the case in previous years).
It’s a truly refreshing palate cleanser from all of the straight stand-up, but audience members are still treated to their comedy fix. This evening in particular there are seven comics taking to the stage: John-Luke Roberts, Nathan Roberts, Andy Field, Cam Spence, Eshaan Akbar, Stevie Martin and Adam Rowe.
Front man Jon Gracey revs up the suspense of the game, whilst also reminding us just how ridiculous the whole concept is. Amongst this group of seemingly innocent villagers lie two hungry werewolves, who will be picking off the villagers one by one until they are found out, or until there are no longer enough villagers left to stop them.
This is a game where emotions run high. Stevie’s extreme exasperation at being called out despite not being a wolf, and Eshaan’s disappointment about being a villager for the sixth time are particular highlights. That’s not forgetting John-Luke’s interesting tactic of randomly calling out someone from the start, and then sitting quietly and stroking his moustache for the rest of the round.
A huge bonus is that the comics really know what they are doing. They know the concept so well that they are able to develop tactics and use their previous experiences to inform their play. They’ve also built such a strong rapport that their interactions begin to shed light on their relationships off stage, adding an interesting social element to the play.
With three games per show, the audience are able to really immerse themselves in this sinister fantasy world. The only problem is, an hour simply doesn’t feel like enough. Catch Werewolf at Underbelly, Bristo Square at 9.05pm throughout August.