Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
"The Most Interesting Man In The World" Dos Equis commercial

“The Most Interesting Man in the World” is the first stop for Tagline, a new podcast about iconic ads

"The Most Interesting Man In The World" Dos Equis commercial
Screenshot: YouTube (Fair Use)
PodmassPodmassIn Podmass, The A.V. Club sifts through the ever-expanding world of podcasts and recommends the previous week’s best episodes. Have your own favorite? Let us know in the comments or at podmass@avclub.com.

SmartLess
Brad Paisley

Illustration for article titled “The Most Interesting Man in the World” is the first stop for Tagline, a new podcast about iconic ads
Screenshot: Apple Podcasts

Will Arnett, Sean Hayes, and Jason Bateman have come together to host SmartLess, a podcast in which they each take turns bringing in a surprise guest only revealed to the other two once the recording starts. As a trio, the actors’ conversation is natural, funny, and refreshingly casual, and that continues on in this episode: Arnett is responsible this time around for bringing in the mystery guest, who just so happens to be country superstar Brad Paisley. A successful musician with loads of accolades, Paisley is just as recognizable to non-country fans, too, thanks to his role as spokesperson for Nationwide Insurance, starring in commercials alongside Payton Manning. As a guest on SmartLess, Paisley is charming and holds his own among the professionally funny co-hosts, chatting with them about everything from baseball to life on tour. The conversation casts four celebrities with decades-long careers in entertainment in a humanizing light, and it’s interesting to hear Paisley talk about how the music industry has changed over the years since he first broke onto the scene. [Jose Nateras]


Tagline
Dos Equis “The Most Interesting Man in the World”

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Screenshot: Apple Podcasts

The inaugural episode of this new podcast from The Clio Awards celebrating great moments in the history of advertising chooses an appropriately commanding subject: The Most Interesting Man in the World, the longtime mascot of Dos Equis beer. Over the course of the hour-long episode, everyone from writers to executives are interviewed about the inception of the campaign featuring a straight-faced and sultry Jonathan Goldsmith and voiceover lines from Frontline’s Will Lyman. Listeners are reminded of just how many dozens of people are involved in the production of a single commercial—there’s even an anecdote involving a not-insignificant bear attack while shooting the first 30-second spot. The pair of twentysomethings who came up with the initial concept on the fly after a week spent procrastinating in Mexico on the company dime are given a lot of airtime here, but their recollections are refreshingly absent of bravado; they are writers who consider themselves lucky to have been part of an unforeseen phenomenon, just like Goldsmith himself, who had already retired by the time he first uttered the line, “Stay thirsty, my friends.” Let’s hope that future episodes of Tagline are similarly heavy on context and light on back-patting. [Marnie Shure]


The Boo Crew
Fede Alvarez (Evil Dead / Don’t Breathe / CALLS)

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Screenshot: Apple Podcasts

As the official podcast for iconic horror genre website Bloody Disgusting, The Boo Crew is hosted by Trevor and Lauren Shand and Leone D’Antonio. The trio starts things off discussing Stay Out of the F**king Attic (recently released on horror-streaming channel Shudder), but the meat of this episode is an interview with talented horror director Fede Alvarez. The major topic of conversation is Alvarez’s latest project, an Apple TV+ series simply named Calls—it’s a fresh take on suspenseful storytelling that relies on phone calls and videos, not to mention a loaded cast that includes Nick Jonas, Lily Collins, and Jennifer Tilly, among many others. In terms of the process, Alvarez describes his approach as working to create something that sounds and feels like real phone calls in an attempt to recapture the feel of watching The Blair Witch Project back in the day. The podcast has great production quality, featuring the audio of old school horror trailers edited in alongside the usual podcast ads, making The Boo Crew a can’t miss for horror fans. [Jose Nateras]


The War Report w/ Gastor Almonte-n-Shalewa Sharpe
We Don’t Believe You Prince Charles

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Screenshot: Apple Podcasts

In a world with 900 million morning pop-culture/news/sports roundup podcasts, The War Report projects a fun-ass energy and a swaggy countenance. As the two hosts, comedians Gastor Almonte and Shalewa Sharpe, run down the events of the week, they create a facetious vibe and make you as the listener feel like they have tuned in to the running commentary in your brain. This is a bonus episode, and thank god for that, because a lot can happen in a week. Where else can you get the scoop on Pepe Le Pew getting booted from the Space Jam franchise? With lots of ground to cover, the conversation bobs and weaves through the intimacy of Zoom parent-teacher conferences, what to do with old hard drives, and some moves over at Triller network. The best part, though, is imagining the conversations The Firm had while navigating the fallout from Meghan Markle’s Oprah interview. Did Prince Charles prove he has Black friends? How potentially miserable were the Black health workers at Jesus House as they posed with him? We’ll never know, but Almonte and Sharpe sure as hell make it fun to imagine. [Morgan McNaught]

Marnie Shure is editor in chief of The Takeout.

pop-culture critic, multi-disciplinary artist, playwright @ Columbia University, they/them