For a country with a relatively small population, we have produced some very fine comedians. Oh woah, is anyone else feeling a sense of deja vu? Anyway the likes of Hamish and Andy, Tim Minchin, Corrine Grant, Nazeem Hussain and Celia Pacquola put Australia right up there along side the very best of international comedy. Unfortunately whether it’s down to bias in the media or a limited number of vacancies under the spotlight, not all worthy comedians have quite made it to household name status yet. That’s not to say they aren’t working the circuit and this week’s podcast is the perfect example of the hard yakka (just so you know I’m Australian too) that goes into the Australian stand-up scene.
The Shelf is arguably Australia’s biggest live comedy show and regularly pulls in the big names such as Tony Martin, Denise Scott, Tom Gleeson and Clare Hooper. Hosted by Adam Richard and Justin Hamilton, it is billed as “The comedy show you won’t see on TV” which goes a little way to explain the show’s ah shall we say, style. As if that wasn’t enough, in 2011 a podcast version of the show began trickling its way onto iTunes.
Now I am not stupid, I do know that this podcast is essentially an add for the live show but even if it is, what an ad! The Shelf podcast has built itself a life of its own and the purpose of that particular life; geek chat. Adam and Justin gather around a microphone, static or on the move (don’t worry it’s not as annoying as it sounds) and just nerdgasm all over the place. Topics range from Doctor Who to Marvel, Doctor Who, DC, The Walking Dead and oh yeah, Doctor Who. Scattered in and around the talk of current television and movies are funny anecdotes and insights from the life of the two comedians.
Before you go off in a huff over the fact that a bunch of comedians think they know enough about pop culture to talk about it on a podcast, step away from the Twitter keyboard and let me explain. Adam or Mister Bitch as he was once know is a regular on Australian television, having been a team captain on the new Spicks And Specks (but we don’t talk about that any more) and creating the harshly underrated ABC1 sitcom, Outland. Whereas Hammo has reviewed movies for the likes of Triple M and Mix FM, not to mention his other podcast with Peter Helliar, Helliar And Hammo Dig Flicks.
I know I said “not to mention his other podcast” but now that I have I must talk about the multitude of other podcasts that these two are involved with apart from The Shelf. Justin Hamilton’s biggest podcasting endeavor has to be Can You Take This Photo Please but he also hosts the aforementioned Helliar And Hammo Dig Flicks and has made an appearance on almost every other Australian comedy podcast. As for Adam he gets around the Australian podcast scene as well but is also one of the three hosts of The Poofcast along with Scott Brennan and Toby Sullivan.
The podcast feed is infrequently updated but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t come without a few surprises. Every now and then a recording of live show finds its way into the feed. As well as that The Shelf website has a backlog of all the episodes plus a few links to where you can buy tickets for the live show when it returns. So if it’s a funny podcast concerning nerdy topics you are after than give The Shelf a shot. Otherwise if you want to listen to Australia’s biggest live comedy show in the privacy of your own home then give The Shelf a shot. Even if you are just another disgruntled Whovian that wants some more opinions to disagree with, all I’m saying is give The Shelf a shot.
There isn’t much in terms of The Shelf content on Youtube and just because I really think this show deserves some more attention, here’s the trailer for Outland.