thoughts on pop culture

Better YouTube Filter: Web Soup or Tosh.0?

Despite all the hours I spend on the computer each week, I do my best not to get sucked down the ultimate web time warp, YouTube.  Understand, I don’t think YouTube is stupid or pointless, I just know that intending to watch one video often ends two hours later with very little to show for it. Just pulling up a few of the clips that were mentioned this week almost led me down the rabbit hole. This has inspired my quest to find a filter to do this for me, leaving me with only the videos that are actually entertaining. Enter Web Soup and Tosh.0.

Web Soup (G4, Sundays 9/8c, premieres June 7th)  
From the creators of The Soup, this show features Chris Hardwick instead of Joel McHale, and is focused specifically on web video instead of Tyra Banks and Flavor Flav. Not surprisingly, the style of humor on the show is very similar to it’s mother-program. I’ve seen Hardwick on other shows, including a recent appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, and he actually seems much less comfortable on his own show than he does as a guest on someone else’s program. Sure, it could have been pilot jitters, but that’s what the editing room is supposed to be used for. Hardwick notes on his blog that he is not trying to do a McHale impression, and I think that’s true. I take him at face value when he says he’s using the same style he’s had since his first tv gig at MTV in the 90’s. Those MTV/90’s comedy roots are evident. It seems to me that his delivery is a mix of Kurt Loder and Carson Daly, with a hint of Jerry Seinfeld. Frankly, I think loyal viewers of the original don’t need to watch Web Soup since McHale’s version already includes some pretty entertaining web video alongside the latest creepy shit Willard Scott has done. The best call was putting the show on a network other than E!, giving Web Soup a chance to capture a different demographic at G4. You can view the promo video here.

Tosh.0 (Comedy Central, Thursdays 10/9c, premiered June 4th)
Comedian Daniel Tosh is the host of this show, that seems to me like a mashup of The Daily Show and The Soup, but again rooted in web video.  Tosh’s style is a bit more unique than Hardwicke’s, although I’ll admit that could be because I had never seen him before the premiere episode aired. What I really enjoyed about Tosh.0 were the differences in delivery, even on the first episode. Instead of “clip, joke, clip, joke, repeat”, Tosh mixes in an interview with the Afro Ninja as well as his own attempt to complete some of the web’s funniest challenges. It seems the later time slot also allows Tosh to be edgier with his jokes, which appeals to me as well. The Afro Ninja spot is available on the website if you missed it. 

I’m sure it’s no surprised based on my comments that I have decided to keep Tosh.0 on my DVR playlist and drop Web Soup. Ultimately, I think each person’s choice will depend on which host appeals best to their sense of humor.

Afro Ninja

Cinnamon Challenge

June 7, 2009 Posted by | New Series, Premiere, Reality, Technology, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Summer TV Preview Part 4: Thursday, Friday, Saturday

Here is part 4 of my Summer TV Preview.  Most of this is focused on Thursday, and I also included Friday and Saturday as well since there isn’t much going on.




NBC – I have zero interest in The Peacock’s sad attempt at reality tv, but I strongly recommend catching up on the repeats of The Office and 30 Rock if you didn’t catch them during the season. There is also one new show I’m going to check out–The Listener is about an EMT who can hear people’s thoughts. The show originally aired in Canada, and stars newcomer Craig Olejnik as main character Toby Logan. It reminds me of several other shows I have enjoyed in the last couple years, with one man using his unique knowledge to try to save people or prevent wrongdoing. Think Eli Stone or Journeyman.


Comedy CentralTosh.0 is a new show featuring comedian Daniel Tosh that takes the internet to task with segments on viral videos, tweeting, blogging, vlogging, poking, and everything else we spend so much time doing. Based on the clips, the show looks like what would happen if The Daily Show got The Soup pregnant. Tosh.0 premieres on June 4th at 10/9c.


Lifetime – You’ll have to wait until August 20th, but Project Runway has finally emerged from pissing contest between Bravo & Lifetime. This sixth season will air at 10/9c, and both Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn will be back. No one has to point out to me that I’m hooked on the new flagship show for the “#1 Network for Women”. I enjoy watching these eager young designers create each week, while simultaneously proving I know absolutely nothing about fashion.


Showtime – Penn & Teller are back with more Bullshit! on June 25th at 10/9c. As for this season’s topics, I’ve only seen the topic for the first episode–Orgasms. I think it’s safe to say P&T won’t have any trouble working some of their trademark gratuitous nudity into the premiere episode.


USA – I haven’t watched it, but I keep hearing about how good Burn Notice is. I don’t think I’ll take the time to catch up, but I am planning to check out the third season premiere on June 4th at 9/8c. On new series front, Royal Pains stars Mark Feuerstein (The West Wing, What Women Want) as shunned New York doctor Hank Lawson and Paulo Costanzo (Road Trip) as his younger brother Evan who convinces him to take a weekend in The Hamptons after Hank gets fired. I find Costanzo hilarious, so I’m looking forward to this one.




SyFyEureka returns for a third season on July 10th at 9/8c. I’ve never watched the show, but I know my fellow geeks enjoy it.


USA – Your Tony Shaloub and Dule Hill withdrawal will be gone on August 8th as new seasons of the popular Monk and Psych premiere at 9/8c and 10/9c respectively. Cherish the 16 episodes of Monk, because they are the last ones you’re going to get.




ABC – The alphabet network runs out the clock on Pushing Daisies, Eli Stone, and Dirty Sexy Money in the 10/9c timeslot starting May 30th. Don’t look for any of these shows to be tied up with a pretty bow though since these episodes were all in the can before the shows were cancelled. Good news for Daisies fans though, as an upcoming comic book mini-series will give us some closure.


Look for the final part of my summer preview to be posted later today.

May 31, 2009 Posted by | Cancelled, Comedy, Drama, New Series, Premiere, Reality, Renewed, Scifi, Season Finale, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Summer TV Preview Part 4: Thursday, Friday, Saturday