Daily Review Challenge, Days 11-19: TV, Podcasts, Music and More

My friend, the awesome Tristan Tarwater of Back That Elf Up, has suggested an alternative to NaNoWriMo for those of us that don’t participate. Her recommendation is, “Every day this month, write a review…” I haven’t really stayed on topic, but I have accepted this challenge.


Schmebs, I’ve really fallen behind. I intended to do this every day. Then I thought it was acceptable to do it FOR every day. Now I have over a weeks worth of reviews to write! The good news – I HAVE SO MUCH TO WRITE ABOUT!

Below the cut you will find reviews of the following: (TV) Gravity Falls, (TV) Steven Universe, (Podcasts) Monster Factory, (Music) Public Service Broadcasting – The Race for Space, (Misc) Chillin’ with a room full of ladies, (Podcasts) The Try Guys, (TV) America’s Next Top Model, (Music) Foster the People – Torches, and (Podcasts) Jordan Jesse Go!

Day 11: Gravity Falls

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First of all, Gravity Falls is where the term “Schmebs” above comes from. You see, in the very first episode there is a gnome named Schmebulock (seen above). All he says is “Schmebulock.” It might be argued that since seeing this episode, I haven’t said much more than “schmebulock.” Schmebulock schmebulock. I’ve started to use “Schmebs” as a genderless replacement for “dude.”

However, that has precious little to do with the actual show, which is amazing by my count. It focuses on a set of twins, Mabel and Dipper, who go to stay with their Great Uncle Stan (aka Grunkle Stan) at his Mystery Shack in Gravity Falls, Oregon. Soon they find paranormal activity happening around them. Each episode is a bit of a mystery that you soon discover is part of a much larger plot. Season one ended with a BANG, and I’m so glad that Season 2 is now on the air. I WOULD LIKE THE NEXT EPISODE NOW PLEASE!

Day 12: Steven Universe

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Steven Universe is the newest show in my to-watch roster, and I’m only a few episodes in. I have heard from EVERYONE however that this show starts out great and only gets better. I can’t imagine that it can get much better, but I’ll take it.

The show is about a boy who’s mom was part of a super hero team called The Crystal Gems. She was defeated in battle, and now he lives and trains with the other Crystal Gems. It also addresses his complicated relationship with his dad, who lives in a van. I know this doesn’t sound like the happiest show based on my description, but I leave every episode with the warmest of fuzzies.

Day 13: Monster Factory

You didn’t think I’d go a whole week without something related to the Brothers McElroy, did you? This time its Monster Factory, featuring the oldest and youngest McElroy brothers, Justin and Griffin. In Monster Factory, Griffin uses the character builder portion of a video game to make the most fucked up creation he can, and then plays the game. Justin is pretty much there as a sounding board. This show has jokes. SO MANY JOKES. Hilarity ensues. There’s not a bad one in the group, but Failing to Clone The Rock in WWE 2K14 might be my favorite.

Day 14: Public Service Broadcasting – The Race for Space

I first heard of Public Service Broadcasting when a friend of mine posted the video above on Facebook. The song has hooks, the video is awesome, and also… history! Upon some research, I discovered their music is made by incorporating archival video footage, and that these videos are also a part of their performance. Check out this Tiny Desk concert!

After diving into the PSB rabbit hole, I downloaded all of their albums that I could get a hold of, but my very favorite is the new one, The Race for Space. It is entirely space themed, in case you couldn’t guess. It is super great music for listening to when I’m out in my workshop.

Day 15: Chillin with a room full of ladies

For those of you who don’t know, I’ve recently created a group called the Spitfire Scouts as I was feeling a lack of women in my life. The group is based on the Girl Scouts, but is intended for radical adult feminist women. On Sunday we had our first meeting, a self care swap. And Schmebs, it was awesome.

Not only did I leave the swap with a handful of chocolates, essential oils, massage bars, teas, and more, but I also got to sit in a room full of women who are hilarious, caring, and endearing. We shared stories about all sorts of stuff including how we take care of ourselves. I left there feeling lighter, empowered, relaxed and happy. I’m still talking about how great it was. I love my ladies and can’t wait for the next meet up!

Day 16: The Try Guys

Are you Schmebs familiar with The Try Guys? I was first exposed (ha!) to them through their video The Try Guys Try Childhood Ruining Costumes. Go ahead, check it out. I’ll wait.

I think my favorite thing about these guys is that not only do they manage to make a hilarious video of them doing ridiculous things, but each one also had a pretty decent moral like ‘get your prostate checked’ or ‘don’t wear sexy disney costumes around little kids.’ These are things I can get behind.

Bonus points: They’re super cute and mostly naked a lot of the time.

Day 17: America’s Next Top Model

Go ahead, judge me. I don’t even refer to it by name around the house. I just wait until a time when Emil is otherwise occupied, and announce I’m going to watch “my program.” But I love it.

I’d seen it before, but I started watching it in earnest last season, when I heard on MBMBAM (surprise surprise!) that in the Makeover episode, they gave one of the guys a beard weave, and I was like ‘what sort of ridiculousness am I missing out on!?’

Turns out I was missing a lot of ridiculousness. But I was also missing a lot of people being offered really interesting opportunities. These people get to live in an amazing house, travel, meet top designers and photographers, and participate in creative challenges that are fun to watch. And sure, there are usually some douches early in the season, but the cream truly rises to the top. In this season we’re down to 4 models, and I’m rooting for all of them.

On top of that, Tyra is an amazing business woman. She’s made an empire for herself and it’s really kind of cool to observe.

Also, I might want to be Kelly Cutrone when I grow up.

Day 18: Foster the People – Torches

I’m not sure why I got this album, because I remember first seeing Foster the People on SNL and being like “who are these pretention dickbags?” But somehow, shortly thereafter I was bumping Torches non-stop. This is a go-to album when I want to get stuff done. Cooking, hanging in the workshop, whatever. It’s dancy and upbeat and makes me feel good. Sadly, I am much less impressed with their more recent album. If you want more Foster the People, I recommend buying Torches twice.

Day 19: Jordan Jesse Go!

From the network that brought you My Brother My Brother and Me, it’s Jordan Jesse Go! This is one that I listened to religiously a long time ago. Then Jesse(‘s wife) had a baby, and I was like NOPE because I was not interested in hearing about kids at all, at the time. Time passed. I was commuting a lot. I wanted more podcasts to listen to, so I decided to give JJGO another try. Schmebs, it was silly of me to ever stop.

Jesse has a soothing radio voice, which he puts to good use in his other show, Bullseye. JJGO is more about being silly with his friend Jordan, and the guest of the week. There isn’t necessarily a rigid format. Just talented personalities having a chat. It is a treasured part of my daily commute.

One thought on “Daily Review Challenge, Days 11-19: TV, Podcasts, Music and More

  1. Pingback: December Links | Gunter and Bean

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