Every now and then a show will come along that so ground breaking, so amazingly revolutionary that it baffles the mind of the general public and only a minute group of people understand its genius. In terms of television it was once Arrested Development until Netflix came along and ruined it. Outside the realm of television, The Shawshank Redemption was a sleeper hit that became more popular on home release. Of course the one you are mostly interested in, since you clicked on this article is the podcast. Today’s choice is my pick for the podcast collection that will one day be hailed as the Arrested Shawshank Redemption Development of podcasting or at least deserves that convoluted title.
The Ray Peacock Podcast
Ray Peacock began his podcast empire in 2007, which in terms of podcasting is only a few days after Jesus was born, coincidence? Well it depends on what you believe, because if you don’t believe in Christianity or religion then on the podcasting time scale, that’s about the time the dinosaurs died out. Either way, this is one of the earliest podcasts of my recommendations. The Ray Peacock Podcast consisted of Ray Peacock, Ed Gamble and to give him his full title, Little Raji James Who Used To Be On Eastenders But Ruined It. As for the concept of the show, it mainly involved teasing Raji, who was (I’m assuming they are no longer friends) one of Ray’s acting friends, having acted on The Bill, Doctor Who and of course Eastenders. Some of the more memorable segments include, Raji’s Autobiography (written by Ray and Ed), Letters for Raji (written by Ray and Ed), Raji’s Beef, a segment where Raji just complained and one very memorable but vulgar segment that I’m sure I can’t even describe on this site but let’s just say Ed didn’t always have fun on the show either (I realise that sounds worse than it is, as far as I’m aware, he had his clothes on the whole time). Unfortunately this mature juvenility has since been removed from iTunes but if you are sneaky you can generally find a few links online, such as this one.
Much like British television, Ray and Ed soon realised that they no longer needed Raji and moved on to their own project, Peacock And Gamble. Capturing the same mischievous school boy humor as their last podcast, this show was hilarious from the start. This show was incredibly tight and it gave the feeling that a lot of work had gone into it. The show’s length was cut to around half and hour, keeping you on edge every week waiting for the next release. Each segment of the show was hilarious from Ed’s Amazing Births to Ed’s Amazing Deaths, not to forget Ray Says A Food OR DRINK That You Might Not Have Had For A While And You Now Want It (I may not have got that exactly right but you get the gist). Arguably the most popular segment was the complaint letter segment in which the boys would talk turns writing complaint letters to companies in the vain attempt to be rewarded with complimentary products. Each week would see their imaginary son Fraser getting into more and more ridiculous scrapes as a result of either that product, his parents’ or his own stupidity. By the time Edinburgh’s 2012 comedy festival had rolled around, the show had evolved into an interview show with Ray and Ed interviewing a different comedian every day of the festival. Some very big names made their way onto the show including Lee Mack, Matt Lucas, Sarah Millican and Greg Davies among a multitude of other hysterical comedians from the comedy scene.
Take a look at this picture on the left and have a guess at who you would think believes in the paranormal. If you thought it was the man with the long hair and the beard, you would be incorrect and that will teach you not to judge a book by its cover. The Parapod is Ray Peacock’s latest foray into the podcast world. This time he is joined by Barry Dodds, while Ed Gamble is off becoming almost famous in Hollywood or something like that. The show’s theme is quite simple, Barry Dodds is a comedian that believes in the world of the paranormal or bollocks as it is more commonly known and Ray Peacock is the show’s much needed voice of reason. Originally I was going to hold off recommending this podcast since it is only two weeks old and I was waiting to see if it was worth a recommendation. Of course now I realise how stupid I was and The Parapod is already the most anticipated podcast in my iTunes collection. Each week Barry will attempt to provide some evidence of the supernatural that Ray quite quickly refutes as nonsense. After a ghost story, Barry will explain a ghostly ritual to the audience and tries to make his way into the listeners’ homes in the aptly named, “PD Files”. If that’s not enough, The Parapod releases a weekly extra in which, to directly quote the podcast; “Barry gets his equipment out and I (Ray) have a good look at it”. Like the podcasts before it, The Parapod has some excellent audience interaction and the show’s website is filled with pictures and videos of the dead and/or imaginary. So whether you believe in world of the abnormal or not, you should subscribe to The Parapod so you can listen to these two hilarious men bicker about the existence of Casper and his mates.
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