Five Podcasters Who Might Actually Be Geniuses

Brace yourself for bristling intellects, mad imaginations and a whole load of outspoken opinions

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Dan Carlin

Who is he? Snarling chronicler of humanity’s darkest days.

Why is he a genius? Imagine if your history teacher had stood in front of the class and shouted at you about how “THE AMOUNT OF DEATH THAT THE MONGOL HORDE INFLICTED WAS ON A SCALE NONE OF YOU CAN EVEN COMPREHEND!” Imagine how great that would have been. That’s basically what Dan’s Hardcore History is. Your man also does a show about politics called Common Sense but the name sort of scared us off.

Five Podcasters Who Might Actually Be Geniuses

Griffin McElroy

Who is he? One third of a trio of funny American brothers who, between them, churn out about a bajillion podcasts a week.

Why is he a genius? As evinced by the prodigious scale of his output (including Till Death Do Us Blart – an annual review of the film Paul Blart Mall Cop 2), Griffin’s got a ceaseless, child-like need to create stuff. Good stuff. If you can stand the idea of three brothers playing Dungeons & Dragons with their dad (funnier than it sounds, we promise) check out The Adventure Zone, for which Griffin writes all the stories and composes all the cool, synth-y music.

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Neal Brennan

Who is he? Skinny white guy who earned infinite Cool Points by being friends with Dave Chappelle and co-creating the legendary Chappelle’s Show TV series.

Why is he a genius? Among the morass of teeth-grindingly lame, Radio 4-ready comedy/chat podcasts, Brennan’s The Champs stood out by dint of being both funny and relevant. There aren’t many guys who can hold their own while talking hip hop to a far-from-sober Danny Brown one week and then racism in comedy with Jordan Peele the next.

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Elliott Kalan

Who he? Formerly the head writer on Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show. Co-host of The Flop House film podcast.

Why is he a genius? You’d be right to turn your nose up at another show on which a few chuckling men make fun of bad films. Unless said show contained Elliott Kalan. A borderline-hysterical presence whose mouth can barely keep up with his brain, Kalen would be incredibly annoying were it not for the fact he’s smarter than anyone we’ve ever met.

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Joseph Fink

Who is he? A deceptively normal-looking bloke who co-created the game-changing Welcome To Night Vale series. War of The Worlds meets Twin Peaks would be the most obvious comparison.

Why is he a genius? Anyone that can turn a bi-monthly news broadcast from a fictional American desert town into a live-touring, money-making phenomenon is probably a genius. Fink’s also launched a new series, Alice Isn’t Dead, that continues in the same laudably weird vein.

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