Ricky Gervais – worlds top podcast?

I don’t know where the Ricky Gervais podcast got that ‘World’s #1′ status from (probably invented it themselves a la Chris Moyles’ ‘Satan Saviour of Radio 1′) so I went and had a listen to episodes 4, and some of 5 and 6.

I must say I can’t see what the fuss is about, it’s terrible and rambly – the average ‘indie’ podcast has more humour and is more topical and on-point, and the Carl Pilkington character is mind-numbingly (intentionally?) dumb and is obviously setup as the fall guy of the jokes, and the others aren’t adding much.

Although it’s good that the talents of Ricky Gervais and Steve Merchant and Guardian should put their time and money behind podcasting, thankfully there will be only 12 episodes – I think Ricky should stick to his much better and funnier TV shows.

Also the legalese at the ending seems a bit, well , stupid:

You may not copy, reproduce, alter, republish, broadcast, make available to the public or otherwise use the podcast except for your personal, non-commercial use.

Most of podcasting has cross-polinated and publicised itself via podcasts mentioning and playing bits of other’s podcasts, saying ‘this is really cool – have a listen’. And people will actually do what the hell they please with the media anyway – it’s freely available on the Net. So having a standard non-reproduction clause on the internet is a little silly and strangely authoritarian – maybe they should have released it as Creative Commons? Now that would be revolutionary.

To be honest if you think the Ricky Gervais show is the be-all and end-all in podcasting, then you REALLY need to check out these shows, or any shows in the comedy or speech categories at any of the podcasting directories.

They are far funnier and better, even on ‘ramble’ random mode:

  • Top of the Pods – cover a lot of the same territory as the Gervais show when they go off topic, but far funnier for it, and have the lists to fall back on to keep it in check. And they’ve been doing it longer than them!
  • Ken And Squip Show – from the US, still very topical and have far more chemistry that the Gervais show
  • Tracks up the Tree – ostensably a music show, but they discuss various topics and have a much funnier chemistry between Ben and Josiah, and Funtime Diane
  • Yeast Radio – from a more shocking perspective, and funnier with good politics. Got bored with daily podcasts (far too frequent for me and I think the quality drops a little), and especially the eating on mic and schvitzing so I’ve currently unsubbed, but it’s worth listening in, and still far better than the RG show
  • Feast of Fools – good on a pink/shock level, sometimes very funny, sometimes serious. Currently unsubbed (see daily podcast comment above) but still quality.

Loads more podcasts out there. especially of a more serious/music bent (see my recommendations to the right) but it annoys me when someone uses their fame to jump on the podcasting bandwagon; but don’t seem to be adding any more than what you could hear on zoo morning radio here. Maybe with less tunes, but existing podcasters do it far better – with less attention and less audience sadly.


  1. January 19

    Hey Tim,

    Thank you for articulating far better than I could exactly how I feel about the Ricky Gervais podcast.

    Though, I can see one positive thing to come from his podcast and that it will bring more awareness to people that normally wouldn’t listen to podcasts discover Ricky’s might go out of their way to find other podcasters that aren’t celebs and are doing this to be heard, for their enthusiasm and or just cause it’s fun. Hopefully they will realise that the Chris Moyles and Ricky Gervias podcasts are actually not that great and there are other people out there podcasting, not needing producers and writers to put together their shows and show far more talent.

    They might be few and far between but one person that digs that little deeper, I guess the fact that these podcasts exsist wouldn’t be in vain.

    Scott x

  2. Thanks for the words of priase, we really appreciate it when folks write about us in their blog/podcast show notes.

  3. Antonio
    February 3

    what a bunch of crap!!!

    the author clearly needs to get laid

    go ricky!

  4. February 4

    The ‘author’ says:

    What has getting laid got to do with it?

    Obviously you’ve listened to too much Ricky Gervais and think not taking the piss out of people is somehow funny, or apparently not getting enough sex makes my argument wrong.

    ‘Bunch of crap?’ Wow, great critique! wooh! Go teh Antonio!!!!111111

  5. Neilan Naicker
    February 5

    You have to realize that the Gervais podcasts are pretty much designed as a vehicle for Karl Pilkington (listening to any episode will tell you that; 95% of the humour is derived from him). It seems that he really is that naive. But if you consider that he *must* be aware of this after his time with Ricky and Steven at XFM, I don’t think of it as laughing at his expense.

    I for one thoroughly enjoy the podcasts, and I’ll admit that Gervais is the weakest thing about them. I find both Karl and Steven far funnier. As for the “#1 podcast” thing, I believe it refers to the phenomenal number of downloads the show has received. Also bear in mind that the three worked together before on London’s XFM, and the new podcasts are just a reinvention of the old show. They’re going back to a format they loved, one that launched their careers. Were you aware of that before you accused them of “using their fame to jump on the podcasting bandwagon”?

  6. February 5

    yeah I guessed it was a vehicle for Karl, just his views are so mind-numbingly annoying

    I did know they had shows befoer this – I live in London and they used to do the Breakfast show on a radio station here, as well as XFM which I listen to – hard to avoid Ricky and Steve with posters everywhere.

    I remember that being just Ricky and Steve, and it’s mainly the Karl bit that annoys me about the podcast….

  7. February 5

    ohthe Number 1 thing is false – unless all podcasters are sharing info on how many downloads they get (whichthey don’t) then it’s a false statistic – many big podcasts aren’t big on say iTunes and vice versa…

    I guess it’s an iTunes statistic (then again several podcasts like me aren’t on iTunes, making that statistic incomplete) but it’s like me saying I’m a Number 1 podcast – difficult to prove either way ATM, there’s no complete central chart or log of what each podcast gets.

  8. Antonio
    February 6

    #1 Gervais was number on Itunes, like or not, and that was a great conquest

    # you do need something, i guessed sex…maybe its a brain then…

  9. February 6

    Disagreeing with me is cool, insulting me or anyone else is not.

    Please do not comment here again, or at least until you show some maturity and learn how to express yourself without insulting people.

    Ad hominem atacks just show you are not really ready for conversing on the Internet yet.

  10. shane
    February 12

    your grammar and spelling uncannily match your critical capabilities.

    you are a nitwit. you know nothing of comedy and less of radio

    a pro

  11. February 12

    Hey Ricky – with fans like these who needs enemies?

    OK you’re email is apparently sgb7@leeds.ac.uk but you’re posting from IP address which is The University of St. Andrews? Hmm, I trust your ‘pro’ statement now…I really do.

    And of course, grammar and spelling on t’Internet is of course just like Chaucer and Billy Waggledagger; it’s all received pronunciation and thou shalt erudite in obseqious, accurate and elaborate verbage, oh mater! Of course if you write informally and quickly and not like The Times you must be an idiot…and all your ideas are automatically stupid.

    Yes I think it so logically follows, that one. It’s like, totally, obvious!!!111 (and I never ever use phrases or grammar in an ironical way, like, ever)

    Or to say in normal Net-talk – Student pwned!

    I’m fed up with this stupid catcalling (hey kids! look up ‘ad hominem’ in the dictionary! You might LEARN something) and this argument has devolved. This thread is locked, comments elsewhere about this will be nuked.

    Have a extraordinarily rumbunctious day!

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