Movie podcasts aren’t new. There are podcasts about specific movie franchises, say Marvel, or Star Wars, or Harry Potter. There are podcasts that review the latest movies. There are podcasts that help spread awareness around indie films. However, there is only one podcast that turns a random roll of the die to decide the fate of three hosts and determine which movie they go see to discuss on the podcast. 2/3 of the hosts get to see a movie they’re genuinely excited and interested in, the lone loser has to go see a “punishment” movie. This is the premise of See You Next Wednesday.
This off-the-wall format turns See You Next Wednesday into a wholly unique movie podcast that brings part movie review, part schadenfreude, and a lot of comedy.
I got a chance to speak with Dan, one of the three hosts of See You Next Wednesday, about the fun podcast premise, some of the punishment movies to date, and where he thinks podcasts are headed. See below for our full Q&A.
Discover Pods: What’s your podcast about?
Dan: Movies and Popular Culture
DP: What’s unique about your podcast?
Dan: Our three hosts roll a die, and the two high rollers go see a movie we are excited about in theaters right now, and the low roller has to watch the “Punishment Film” we have picked each week.
DP: What have some of the punishment movies been so far? Any that turned out to be surprisingly good?
Dan: In terms of punishments, usually we will pick something that has been getting poor reviews in theaters (Grown Ups 2, Gods of Egypt, Boss Baby, etc.) or we will look for something to pair up thematically (i.e. pairing up a brand-new superhero movie with a dud from the past, or War of the Planet of the Apes with an old Planet of the Apes TV movie.)
As for movies surprising us, absolutely! It’s actually pretty great when you watch something that you are expecting to be a poor experience but ends up being very surprising. I think all three of us honestly live for that moment where you are truly and genuinely surprised – it’s something you don’t get to feel all that often as you get older.
DP: How do you try to differentiate yourself from other movie-focused podcasts out there?
Dan: I think something that differentiates us from movie-mocking podcasts is that we ultimately are life-long film fans who want movies to be great. It can be fun to do the fish-in-a-barrel thing from time to time, but when one of us, say, sees The Last Witch Hunter and ends up actually engaging with it on the level that it is likely intended to (in this case, a super-silly but entertaining piece of cheese) it is a great change of pace. We try not to go into the punishment movies with “let’s see how I can trash this movie” but to engage with it and give it a chance.
I also think – or at least, from our listener feedback – that our ability to jump between silly and immature comedy and back to thoughtful commentary or analysis is a strength of ours. All of us come from some kind of film or acting or production background, so we like to at once whip out a super goofy joke or go on riffing tangents, but then pull back and discuss a movie in more detail and really dig into it when we can.
DP: What are your top 5 favorite movies?
Dan: I can’t speak for everyone, but personally some of my favourite movies are Five Easy Pieces, The Monster Squad, Wendy & Lucy, Evil Dead II, Real Genius, Seventeen (1984) and many, many others.
DP: Do you think we’ve reached “peak podcast”
Dan: Absolutely not; it’s easy to take wide swaths of popular culture and proclaim them dead – punk is dead! hip-hop is dead! horror is dead! But honestly, there will always be innovators, there will always be people pushing back against what the mainstream trends are in podcasting.
I don’t think the technology has advanced in podcasting to the point where it is able to die yet – I think we’re still hovering on that edge where things are very sporadic, there’s a million tools, apps, indexes, sites etc. devoted to podcast discovery and creation, and yet the big one (iTunes) still feels antiquated (though they’re getting there with some of their new tags, etc.)
I still think there’s going to be something on the horizon that will crack the industry open even more, I just don’t know what it is – haha. You hear a lot about “when will the YouTube of podcasting arrive,” and I’m not sure about that, but I know that change will likely come in the area of technology and accessibility.
DP: Where can listeners find you?