Reply All: #99 Black Hole, New Jersey

After the recent Uber/hacking episodes, I’m starting to notice a theme in a subcurrent of Reply All episodes –> start off with an easy villain (Uber, Russian exporters), do your best to paint them in the shadiest light possible, outright accuse them of screwing people over…and then spend the rest of the episode clearing their name, even though their name was really only tarnished because how they chose to begin the episode. For this episode, though, it works must better than the Uber episodes (which spent way too much time playing the Uber-as-villain card before finally and completely clearing them of wrongdoing*).

*BTW, that’s probably Reply All‘s greatest crime of all…making Uber look good.

Reply All: #17 The Time Traveler And The Hitman

From March 21, 2015
In 1997, John Silveira wrote a joke classified ad in a tiny publication called Backwoods Home Magazine asking if anyone wanted to travel back in time with him. A lot of people took him seriously. What do you do when everyone wants you to fix the worst mistakes they’ve ever made.

Eric’s Thoughts:

This one’s from the back catalog of Reply All. I listened to it because some stuff from this specific episode came up at work. Kinda disappointed they go into the whole story that “inspired” the movie Safety Not Guaranteed without talking about the fact that the story became the basis for a movie in the first place. I have so many questions about that. (For a while, I assumed this must’ve been made before the movie came out, but a brief plug for the movie at the end of the segment shows that’s not the case.)


Reply All: #98 Fog of Covfefe

The last person on earth who has not heard about covfefe walks into a studio, and a strange journey begins.

Eric’s Thoughts:

The guys’ unwillingness to give Hillary Clinton a pass that they so quickly give themselves stands out as a major sour spot in this episode. Hearing men pile on H-Clint over tiny things is soooooo 2016. (Especially since a. they must know she doesn’t curate her own twitter feed and b. her tweet was SUPER popular, even for  a tweet from someone with her following.)

Reply All: #95 Silence in the Sky

The first half of this episode deals with all the signals we earthlings send into space intentionally to try and get the attention of aliens…and whether that might be a very bad idea.

It was interesting and right up my alley.

The second half is — what feels like — their 1 millionth episode dealing with people who return emails for other people. I know it was in honor of Email Debt Forgiveness Day, but it still felt like a repeat…

Also interesting, because these guys are just so good at making these things sound interesting, but I really hope it’s the last of this kind of story we’ll hear from a while on Reply All.

Reply All: #3 We Know What You Did

I jumped onto the Reply All bandwagon mid-stream, so there are a lot of episodes I’m still catching up on (in no particular order). It’s weird listening to this very early one. Even the way PJ Vogt pronounces the name of the show in the intro (over-emphasizing, just a bit) feels a bit different. Or maybe it’s just my ears.

As for content…it’s a pretty straight-forward episode about the guy who inadvertently changed the internet by inventing (quite innocently) the pop-up as. Feels a lot like their old TL:DR podcast.

Reply All: #39 Reply All Exploder

I have mixed feelings about podcast episodes that are just episodes of another podcast.  Sometimes the “fill in” podcast doesn’t feel connected enough to the one you actually subscribe to (either in content or style). Sometimes it feels like you’re just listening to a really long advertisement for something else you wouldn’t otherwise be interested in.

This episode of Reply All — which is really just two episodes of another podcast titled Song Exploder — doesn’t have those problems.  There’s a direct tie-in between Reply All and Song Exploder, the styles of the two podcasts mesh well together, and the makers of Reply All reap no benefit from people who choose to listen to Song Exploder.

That said, did they really need to include TWO different episodes of Song Exploder? The 2nd one felt like gilding the lily a bit, just to fill time. Music lovers will dig it, but sadly, I listen to podcasts mostly because I’m not much of a music guy…