Picking favorites is not something I’m good at. I would never be able to, say, rank the cheekbones of Benedict Cumberbatch, Matt Smith, and Tom Hiddleston. I have 6 cats and my favorite changes on almost an hourly basis. And it’s always difficult for me to choose my favorite characters when we get to that part of the discussion on every Educating [Geeks] podcast. So I was shocked (and I’m sure the other ladies were as well!) that I knew immediately which episode of Educating [Geeks] was my very favorite of 2013.
Here is where I insert a flashback sequence to 2012, when I was asked by Phoenix Comicon staff if I wanted to participate in any of a list of panels that were needing additional panelists. I jumped at the chance to participate in an American Horror Story discussion with one of the Horror Department staff members, a moderator, and everyone who attended our panel. I was asked the following year to return for American Horror Story: Asylum and knew that I had to invite the rest of the Geekhosts and turn the panel into a podcast.
At our planning meetings, we all are very guilty of letting our ideas for guest Geekhosts get away from us. If we had all the people we wanted to invite on each podcast, we’d have several dozen Geekhosts at once and it would be chaos. But we were able to bring additional voices into our American Horror Story: Asylum discussion because of Phoenix Comicon. These friends and strangers alike brought a lot of great insight and analysis. With the audience participation, we were able to get into some really deep stuff, like the themes of identity, mistrust, ambition, and the many faces of evil on AHS: Asylum.
The format of American Horror story showcases one of our favorite things: watching actors act. With the actors recast as completely different characters (even with different accents!) for each season, we get to see how great their talents really are. In addition to the actors demonstrating their versatility, AHS shows the flexibility of creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk. Not only have these guys been bringing us 3 years now of sexy horror programming, they are also responsible for all the teenage angst and schmaltzy fun of Glee. How’s that for range?!
Highlights of the podcast:
- The record scratch during our intro music and the start of “Dominique” by The Singing Nun. We had the song playing on repeat during the panel as attendees filed into the room and I really loved how our genius editor and Geekhost Megan was able to translate that experience into something the podcast listeners could also enjoy
- Before Bri did the official intro, Alice and I had a very sweet “you look beautiful!” “I like your new necklace!” exchange that gives a behind-the-scenes glimpse of our actual relationships to each other. It could have been easily edited out for the podcast release, but I love that it was left in. We don’t just play nice for the podcast, we are all very fond of each other in real life.
- Megan’s Tom Cruise bit. “Tom Cruise in Tom Cruise’s movie starring Tom Cruise: ‘Tom Cruise.’” I get the giggles pretty bad every time I hear it.
- Megan complains about the Monsignor genuflecting backwards (Anglican way vs Catholic way) and we realize that we still haven’t figured out what gets Bri “bunched up” as she put it. I have the hypodermic needle thing (the angles at which IV needles are stuck is just so completely unrealistic in most shows), and Alice has her gun thing (any experienced gun owner would NEVER just walk around with their finger on the trigger). I’m sure when we figure out what Bri’s thing is, it will be front page news on our blog.
- When polling the audience to see whether AHS: Murder House or AHS: Asylum was their favorite, Megan says, “It’s hard to choose, right? Because they’re so very different.” SEEEEEE!!!!! I get teased by the other Geekhosts all the time for never being able to pick my favorites, so I am glad to have Megan back me up on this.
- And my favorite audience drinking game rules suggestion: “Keep drinking until you think you’re as drunk as the writers were when they came up with the plot twists.”