Every gift you give is actually two gifts. The first gift is the thing itself, something the recipient needs or want. The second gift is the vetting of the item. It’s a gift of time, in other words; you’re saving the recipient valuable hours they’d otherwise spend conducting their own research to ensure they’re getting something good.
Boy, do I have a gift for you.
What is Talking Joe?
I’ve just finished episode 8 of Talking Joe: A G.I. Joe Podcast, which is a show with a narrow focus. Talking Joe is a podcast focused entirely on the incredibly popular GI Joe comic book from the 80s.
Each episode covers just a few issues of the series. While some issues are the comic are standalone, most comic book stories are written as arcs, so a single episode of Talking Joe will discuss that particular storyline.
Issues are then given a rating of 1 to 10 Yo Joe! Colas.
Who is Talking Joe?
The strength of Talking Joe are the hosts, Chief and Ben. Normally, “two guys talking” is my least favorite podcast format, ’cause c’mon, like the world needs more nerds who love to hear themselves talk.
But Chief and Ben are excellent. Chief presents as the crusty, opinionated nerd, while Ben plays his foil as the enthusiast. In fact, a weekly segment is Chief talking about some trivial, petty matter that cheeses him off, yet a couple episodes in and you realize that–plot twist!–the crust on Chief is wafer-thin and inside he’s the biggest GI Joe enthusiast of us all.
Meanwhile, Ben is sunny and no nonsense. He adds wonderful color while he also keeps the podcast moving at an engaging clip. More than once, Ben has injected a light-hearted prompt that moves the discussion to the next issue.
Childhood friends, the two play wonderfully off of each other. What’s more, both are wonderfully likable. Listen, if I’m going to spend an hour each week listing to two nerds talk, I want to like the hosts. For an hour each week, Chief and Ben make great company.
Why Talking Joe?
The GI Joe comics of the 80s were an integral part of the childhood of millions. I’ve written before about the importance of GI Joe and my respect for Larry Hama, the writer of the comic. Talking Joe taps into that nostalgia. Anyone who even dabbled with the comics or owned a few Joe action figures will enjoy the podcast.
In addition to the nostalgia factor, Talking Joes is a well-done podcast. Audio quality is good and the transitions, segments, and editing is perfect for what is–two guys geeking out over something they love–without trying too hard or attempting to be too clever like too many podcasts do. It’s straight-forward quality.
But it ultimately really is the nostalgia factor. Talking Joes has been a gift to me. I’ve had an ABSOLUTE BLAST re-reading the old GI Joe comics so I could track along episode-by-episode as Chief and Ben go through them.
I’ve remembered Scarlett and Snake Eyes, and I’ve remembered the introduction of new Joes like Gung-ho, as well as new villains like Zartan and his obnoxious Dreadnoks. I feel like Talking Joes is a little hour-long gift to me each week, so now it is a gift I am sharing with you.
So, now you know about Talking Joe. And that’s half the battle. The other half is for you to go check it out for yourself. Here’s the link. Yo Joe!