Listening – The Hilarious World of Depression

hilarous-world-depression_tile@2When I first saw the title of “The Hilarious World of Depression” podcast I thought hmmm depression as comedy?  Well not really.  It’s more of a podcast about depression which features comedians.  There are definitely funny moments.  But there are also heart wrenching and potentially triggering discussions about personal experiences with mental illness, substance abuse, self-worth, and suicide.

The podcast is hosted by John Moe and created in partnership with the Make It Okay campaign.  Each episode features John Moe talking with a comedian about their professional practice and their mental health past.  It’s funny but filled with serious and real moments.  As the opening blurb for the podcast says, “Depression is a vicious cycle of solitude and stigma that leaves people miserable and sometimes dead. Frankly, we’re not going to put up with that anymore. The Hilarious World of Depression is…a chance to gain some insight, have a few laughs, and realize that people with depression are not alone and that together, we can all feel a bit better.”

It’s worth a listen but I would definitely put a trigger warning on this podcast and make sure you’re in a good head space when listening.

Listening – Web of Queer

I listen to a lot of podcasts.  The android app I use called “podcast addict” might be an apt description for my recent consumption of them.  A lot Almost all of the podcasts I listen to are Doctor Who related.  I’ve been listening to new and back catalogue episodes of Verity!, Radio Free Skaro, the Memory Cheats, and the Tin Dog Podcast for months now.  Despite all this fan inspired podcast listening I hadn’t stumbled on Web of Queer until fairly recently.

I’ve been binge listening to Web of Queer ever since this discovery. Web of Queer is comprised of a group of queer folks from a wide range of geographic backgrounds, ages, with varying experiences with Doctor Who and podcasting. The podcast is a great mix of reviews and discussions, often looking at bits of Doctor Who or media from a queer perspective. Reviews range from New to Classic to Big Finish to Books and the occasionally tangentially related media.

Some of my favourite episodes are the ones where the group has an in-depth discussion about queer representation on Doctor Who or about the use of gender and sexuality labels in fandom.  A lot of these discussions are also a great starting point for anyone who is interested in learning more about the importance of language, representation, and the queer community.  These discussions are also often accompanied by links to other relevant background reading. The episodes also include time stamps to you can skip to the discussion if you would prefer not to listen to a review as well. Some highlights include:

Listening: Verity and Doctor Who

While working on repetitive tasks I often listen to music, podcasts, or audio books.  One of my favourite podcasts is Verity! which features six women talking about Doctor Who.  Many episodes focus on a specific episode with the participants discussing their take, likes, and dislikes of the episode.  Recently, they re-watched and discussed “Rose” the first episode in the 2005 reboot of Doctor Who.  Much of this particular Verity! episode focused on reactions to the re-boot and reactions to seeing that first Doctor Who episode after the lengthy hiatus.

This got me to thinking about my personal discovery of Doctor Who.  Despite my love of all things fantasy, history, and sci-fi I came relatively late to the game.  I don’t remember ever seeing the show while growing up and I didn’t start watching immediately in 2005.  I came upon it by chance.  I was away for work and surfing channels in the hotel room.  Stumbled across a Christoper Eccleston era episode on TV and was enthralled. I have no recollection of what episode it was but I do remember that it was a two part episode.  While talking to Andrew on the phone that night I was like “I was watching this thing….can you please record the other half of this thing called Doctor Who.”  For me it was like discovering this brand new amazing thing.

For Andrew this moment wasn’t nearly as memorable and was more like “Oh, I know that show… it terrified us as children. But yeah, I’ll PVR it for you.  Which from what I’ve read Andrew’s response was fairly typical of a lot of people his age in Ontario.  Apparently Doctor Who aired on TVO for many years and often immediately followed children’s programming.  So the end of the Polka Dot Door would transition in the eerie sounds of the Doctor Who theme without much warning. The video below illustrates the terrifying blending of children’s programming with Doctor Who.  Seems a bit jarring.

TVO Polka Dot Door Outro Dr Who Intro by Retrontario