We have so many great podcasts participating in the 5th annual Philadelphia Podcast Festival, so we're highlighting some of them in this Q&A series. You can find the full schedule of live shows here, and purchase tickets for The Flop House's live recording on July 16 at 8:00pm at the Trocodero here.
How did your show come about? How did you meet your co-hosts?
Elliott: Dan and I met through performing at a basement comedy theater in New York called Juvie Hall that a mutual friend of ours ran. We became good friends pretty quickly, and it was through Dan that I met the ray of overpowering sunshine that is Stuart Wellington.
Stuart: Dan and I met at Earlham College, where we both went for undergrad. When we both ended up in Brooklyn, Dan and I started hanging out regularly and watching bad movies together. The show grew out of that. I met Elliott when Dan dragged me to Elliott's show in that basement.
Dan: Everyone has already answered the question, but I just wanted to say that I started the podcast in part because I wanted to get Stuart on tape, because I thought he was hilarious, and he wasn’t interested in performing comedy, so he’d never be introduced to the world without a little push. When Elliott joined, he was the motormouthed secret sauce we needed to complete the equation.
Are there episodes you consider your “greatest hits?” Which ones are good “entry” points for new listeners?
Elliott: A lot of people start with episodes for movies they’ve already seen. But I’d recommend the episodes for Bullet to the Head, Foodfight!, and The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure as personal favorites that might provide good entry points.
Stuart: Folks seem to like our Mirrors episode. I really enjoyed watching Easy Rider 2: The Ride Home, and I think that's a really fun episode.
Dan: I think the top ones have been mentioned already, but people also mention Jonah Hex as a favorite. Maybe Fateful Findings too.
What do you appreciate most about this medium?
Elliott: I love a lot of things about the podcasting medium. There’s an intimacy and immediacy to podcasts that really makes listening to them a more valuable experience. You get the feeling that you’re in a conversation (a one-sided one, sure, but still) with the people you’re listening to, and that you inhabit a kind of special private space with them for the duration of the show. A lot of people tell us that listening to our show makes them feel like they’re hanging out with their friends and that they feel closer to us than they do to people on, say, television. It’s an intimate medium, which means you can get away with being both really earnest and emotional and super random and goofy and stupid, often in the same show.
Dan: I couldn’t have said it better.
What do you most look forward to when doing live shows? How does the show change?
Elliott: The thing I look forward to the most is the immediate reaction from the audience, which energizes me to no end. I don’t have to wonder if a bit will go over well or flop, and I have a better sense of when to stop talking (not a strength of mine normally) if I’m losing the audience. It’s a real thrill to have people sitting there in front of you, enjoying the nonsense jabbering we do.
Stuart: It definitely adds a bit of urgency to our conversation. And I love any excuse to mug for an audience.
Elliott: The change to the show is 1) we do visual presentations before the show that don’t get recorded and only the live audience sees, which are fun to put together and perform and 2) instead of reading listener letters at the end of the show we take questions from the audience. Which can be more fun because you can interact with the fans and also more unsettling and frightening because you can interact with the fans.
Dan: I look forward to being terrified ahead of time, and then suddenly feeling totally comfortable the moment I step on stage. It’s a weird bit of psychological magic that happens every time. I also just look forward to seeing the crowds – knowing that this silly thing I started as a kind of a lark has grown into something that’s genuinely important for a lot of folks.
What are you hoping to do in Philly other than record a live podcast?
Elliott: For me nothing beats seeing the Duchamp collection at the Museum of Art. He’s been one of my favorite artists since I was a teen, and Philadelphia is lucky to hold all his major works in one place.
Stuart: My wife and I will definitely make a stop over at the 4th Street Deli, which feels like a little slice of Brooklyn away from Brooklyn. I will probably hit up The Reliquary to go record and tabletop game shopping afterwards.
Dan: I was in Philly to cover the political convention for The Daily Show recently, so I might spend my extra time checking out other podcasts at the festival.
Where can people find your podcast and hosts?
Stuart: You can find me in Brooklyn at Hinterlands Bar, a bar that I own with my wife. I'm on Twitter as @flophousecat.
Dan: I’m @dankmccoy.