What a delightful experience! So, I had never heard an episode of the podcast “Stuff You Should Know,” (hosted by Josh Clark and Charles “Chuck” Bryant) before I went to the live show on January 25 by the same name.
I didn’t know what to expect going in blindly, but quickly discovered the show is basically like having two wonderful people find and explain an obscure but fascinating Wikipedia page to you, including their own comedic asides and opinions along the way.
This episode (stop four on a six-city tour) revolves around the only unsolved sky-highjacking case, the “DB Cooper Case.” Josh and Chuck relayed it to us in a digestible amount of detail and allowed humorous tangents to run their course. (Josh bonded with someone in the audience over the HBO original movie Caveman, they both called me out for snorting when I laughed, etc.).
Over the course of an hour we learned all the details of this case, then at the end we heard the different speculations and possible suspects (as it remains unsolved) and were able to process them with a degree of informed wherewithal.
It was like binge-watching a crime drama but condensed and with someone (Two someones. Two endearing someones!) guiding you through the whole thing. Like if someone explained all the facts of The Jinx or Making a Murderer to you while drinking a Cabernet and cracking jokes about the police’s names.
Also, it must be said, the hosts were both so GENUINELY funny and charming. Their dynamic was wonderful. Josh was so sharp with such an unassuming delivery. So many times he would get a joke out and move on before people even caught it to respond. And his sweet demeanor (he looks like you might imagine ‘Stuart’ from Mad TV would look in high school) coaxed an avowal you didn’t even remember giving. At one point he hypothesized that a little boy danced while counting money on the grave of his dead father, and it just sounded so sweet when he said it.
Charles/Chuck was more unabashed and drunk (his own admission), announcing at the beginning of the show, “Josh you’re gonna have to carry this one.” After saying he didn’t have his first page of notes, he explained that he couldn’t use Josh’s because he “couldn’t read his handwriting.” There was a pause, then they both said at the same time, “They’re typed.” But despite that he was great too, still incredibly sharp and very funny.
It was such a wonderful show, their chemistry was great, the subject matter was mostly fascinating, and they’re both such genuinely smart, funny guys (both head writers at How Stuff Works). All the information delivery was interesting and engaging. I would definitely recommend trying to see a live show, and check out the podcast because it has to be good!