New Thing #20: Stuff You Should Know (The TV Show)

SYSK_TVI can't remember the first podcast I listened to. I do know that "Stuff You Should Know" was among the first.

I went to iTunes with the express purpose of finding a podcast that would help me learn something new.

I saw "Stuff You Should Know", from a website called, on the Top 10 list and tried it out.

I quickly got hooked, and like I do with all things that hook me, I had to go back and listen to all of it.

Luckily there wasn't much that I had missed and it didn't take me all that long to catch up (although I probably spent more time on it than I should admit), and I've listened as it grew from a podcast to, now, also a television show.

Saturday night "Stuff You Should Know", the TV show, debuted on the Science Channel.

Here's a quick rundown of the podcast - Josh (pictured, left) and Chuck (pictured, right) tackle a question that was researched on their site, and banter as they talk about the research.

The podcast went from 4-5 minute tidbits with Josh and a couple of other different people before Chuck became the permanent co-host and the show extended to 18 minutes to 40 minutes per episode.

It's all so simple, but it's very, very good. A lesser man might get jealous because of how simple the formula is and how successful that formula has been...but Josh and Chuck are so likeable  that you root for them to succeed with whatever venture they're involved in.

And now it's a TV show.

My biggest fear going into the show was how the podcast would translate - in other words, there's a loyal following of the podcast, but I'm sure for a TV show like this to succeed it needs to develop a larger following. So does the TV show cater only to the existing fans, or is it universal enough so that anyone can watch and be entertained?

After two episodes, I'm leaning towards the latter. (Although I think that remains to be seen, because I'm looking at it through biased lenses.) I hate to admit it, but I wasn't expecting the show to be great - I thought it would be cringe-worthy at times. It wasn't.

The theme song was somewhat cringe-worthy. At the very least it may be a verse too long. But everything else was pretty good - the shows were funny, the plots were well-written - true to the podcast and drawn out into a half-hour episode, and Chuck and Josh were really good actors. Surprisingly good. That was my biggest takeaway.

If I've sold you on it, "Stuff You Should Know" now has its own website, with all kinds of extra information. The Science Channel airs "Stuff You Should Know" Saturday nights at 10pm. The episodes will also be available the next day on-line...and the first show, a funny one about Alien Hand Syndrome, is being offered now for free.