Published Sep 25, 2016Dana Gould recently got himself in some hot water on Twitter. It wasn't a firestorm of controversy, rather a blip of heated debate. It's something that was addressed at the Second City today, at a live JFL42 taping of The Dana Gould Hour Podcast.
It's unclear exactly what it was, but it definitely involves Caitlyn Jenner. The podcast guests were Carmen Esposito and Margaret Cho, and it triggered a bigger picture conversation. There's something going on in comedy these days — the world for that matter — and it's the notion of correctness.
To an extent, Gould represents the aging white guy that tries to get his head around such things. He agrees that his observations are sometimes made from "Mount Whitey," but the Jenner thing? He explains how Bruce Jenner had at one time, epitomized the American male, winning medals, plastered on Wheaties boxes. Isn't it interesting, with that in mind, to see the emergence of Caitlyn Jenner? Right now that doesn't sound so bad, but some people thought it was.
This is arguably one of the best things about a podcast medium. Even in a small room full of people, participants are disarmed. It can be a powerful forum in which to have real discussion, and The Dana Gould Hour Podcast presents itself in its purest form — a three-way conversation. No gimmicks or bits. Just straight talk.
Cameron, proudly lesbian, is less tolerant of these observations than Margaret is. She's the chattier of the three, but committed. She would know, after all. There are undeniable challenges she's had as a comedian. Margaret lightens the load a bit. She recalls with Dana about their time in San Francisco (they came up together), and the weird shit comedians do.
Inevitably, that's what they come back to. Comedians. Comedy. It's what unites them. Can rape jokes be funny? Anything can, they all agree, and that depends on context. Dana demonstrates — "Have you ever wanted to rape a clown, so you follow him into his car, and you end up having to rape, like, 40 clowns?"
The "podcast show," especially this format, depends entirely on holding interest. This one, more or less, does. You can't really miss with three smart people on stage, who happen to be accomplished comedians. They are the philosophers of our time, after all. That can occasionally get a little dry, even boring, but the nuggets of wisdom are worth it.