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The J.B Podcast

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J.B (given and surname currently unavailable) makes me feel very British. After all, our ancestry is British. The difference is that he lives in England whereas I am a Canadian who descends from English stock. Still, he is as self-effacing as I would be if I hosted my own podcast.

J.B.’s Britishness serves as a stark reminder of how different American podcast hosts are from those hosted by English-speaking personalities from countries like Canada and Australia. Even neurotics like Marc Maron still deliver with unassailable confidence while they’re on the mic. Maron’s self-esteem may rest on shaky ground, but there is a marked lack of upspeak, and though he is honest about his shortcomings, he expresses no doubts about his ability to host his very popular podcast.

J.B. was upfront in his interview with mentalist Banachek that he was uncomfortable with talking about himself when Banachek inquired about J.B.’s personal details after having dominated the interview for its entire 58 minute run-time. In fact, J.B. could have edited himself out out of the episode entirely and it would have sounded more like a Banachek monologue than an interview. Banachek’s British accent has been streamlined from all the time he has spent in the United States and he has apparently also developed the same comfort Americans have with talking about themselves.

Such narcissism has eluded J.B. This would suit you just fine if you are unfamiliar with the host and listen for his roster of guests, for the show is guest-driven. If you want to hear an interview with Banachek and want the episode to focus on Banachek, you’ll get your money’s worth. J.B is a human spotlight; it is his guests who shine.

Banachek’s guests don’t seem to mind. After all, they wouldn’t have gotten into show business if they didn’t want to be seen and heard. Celebrities who expect gratitude for their time and don’t want to be interviewed by somebody reading a Wikipedia page would not be disappointed by J.B. The J.B Podcast is a show by a fan, for fans. J.B represents fans effectively, capturing the curiosity and awe of spectatorship that we commonly feel so acutely. That, and J.B hands his guests the steering wheel, whereupon they direct the journey with the stories of their lives. Won’t you take a ride?


About Morgan Rector

I am a podcast critic. There are more enough music and film critics. This medium could use some kind of yardstick to indicate podcast greatness where it appears. I will write reviews of podcasts new and old on every conceivable subject (if I can get to them all). The following is a key to understanding my rating system of 1-5 Ms: M: If my ears could puke... MM: Wake me up when it's over. MMM: You've got something good there, kid. Keep it up. MMMM: Bravo! This is one fine podcast, one I would recommend and listen to with regularity. MMMMM: Podcast historians will remember this show fondly and will always name-drop it in future documentaries on the medium. How does it feel to be a genius?

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