Podcast Reviews

As I've hinted at in recent entries, I've been delving a bit into podcasts. For the uninitiated, a "podcast" is just a fancy word for pre-recorded radio shows that you can subsribe to on the internet (people often download podcasts to listen to on their iPod, hence the name - though the term really is a misnomer, as you don't need an iPod to listen to a podcast, and it's not broadcast either).

In any case, my short commute actually doesn't lend itself to listening, so I haven't listened to that many podcasts and all of the ones I've listened to are at least tangentially movie-related. So here are a few short reviews of podcasts that I've listened to (again, mostly movie related):
  • The CHUD Show: A few months ago a friend of mine recommended CHUD's podcast to me. I've always been a fan of the site (which features lots of movie news, etc...), so it was the first podcast I checked out, and I was quite happy with it, though I have to admit, it's got limited appeal. Once you realize that the name of their site (Cinematic Happenings Under Development - CHUD) is partly an homage to a cheesy 80s horror flick (in which CHUD stands for "Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers"), you get the idea. I'm a strange guy, so it doesn't bother me much, but the CHUD folks seem to have an affinity for really bad jokes and obscure movies (which most would also consider bad, but people like myself don't mind much). It's not the highest quality audio, and they appear to be released only sporadically (there's only 5 podcasts in 3-4 months), but they are extremely long (1 hour+) and for fans of cheesy horror and obscure actors, it's a real treat. If you hear the plot for the movie Castle Freak (a topic of discussion in one of their shows) and think it sounds like your type of movie, you'll probably love CHUD. I like it, but it's not for everybody...
  • Cinecast: A much more polished and slick podcast, Cinecast is also great and it has a broader appeal as well. This podcast is almost the polar opposite of CHUD. It's orderly, regularly published, and it usually features more mainstream fare. They release two 40 minute podcasts a week, and in each episode, they start with a movie review (each week they review a current release and an older film which is usually part of some genre that they're studying - they're currently watching horror films, much to my pleasure), they talk about comments they've received about previous podcasts, and they give a top 5 list (i.e. top 5 war movies, top 5 actors, etc...). It's quite entertaining, and the high frequency of new episodes helps greatly (much like a high frequency of blogging helps in that realm). Naturally, whether you'll like it or not greatly depends on if you've seen the movies they're talking about, but as podcasts go, this is probably the most professional I've heard yet.
  • Cinemaslave: I really wanted to like this one, but I just can't get into it. Reading through the topics on each podcast got me really excited to listen, but it ended up being quite disappointing. I think the biggest problem here is that it's just one guy talking the entire time (CHUD and Cinecast have at least 2 commentators) and the lack of interplay really takes its toll.
  • Bleatcast: I already wrote about this one, but it's worth mentioning again because Lileks is a fascinating fellow. If you enjoy the Bleat, chances are that you'll also enjoy the bleatcast.
So that's it for now. Do you have any podcasts that you enjoy (or that you think I'd enjoy)? Drop a comment below...