The Chris Gethard Show in The New York TimesThe Chris Gethard Show was mentioned in this NY Times article about anti-talk shows. Read the excerpt below and click the title for the full article.
The Rise of the Anti-Talk Show
By JASON ZINOMAN
Published: June 7, 2012
Mr. Aukerman and Mr. Andre always seem scripted, even when they are improvising. That’s not the case with “The Chris Gethard Show,” an often riveting experiment in seat-of-your-pants broadcasting that has been building a cult following over the past year. It isn’t a fake version of an amateurish cable access show. It’s the real thing. Besides appearing on Wednesday nights on the Manhattan Neighborhood Network, the show is archived on Mr. Gethard’s Web site, thechrisgethardshow.com.
Mr. Gethard is a short, unassuming fellow with the sneaky intensity of someone with a chip on his shoulder. A stalwart at the Upright Citizens Brigade, where he used to perform the talk show, he is a beautiful storyteller and maker of comedy videos with a masochistic streak. He once tracked down and interviewed an Internet commentator who wrote a brutal critique of his performance on a short-lived sitcom. While this exchange seems built for a cathartic strike back, the young critic repeated the same harsh sentiment. Mr. Gethard just took it, looking hurt.
On his show he stands in front of a crowd of friends and regular characters, asking questions, making small talk, stirring the pot. His persona is earnest, curious and resolutely decent, the sane Everyman at the center of a circus. Regular hangers-on include a guy in a banana suit and a hairy young man in a swimsuit and goggles known as Human Fish who meditates on questions like “Rabbis and rabbits?” Sometimes the show resembles a college dance party. Other times it’s just Mr. Gethard chatting with his mom. It can be boring, but its commitment to avoiding contrivance has its rewards.
Mr. Gethard takes many calls live on the air. In his first show about a year ago a perplexed caller asked him what the point was. Confidently, Mr. Gethard confessed that he had no clue. On the second show there was a similar question from a caller and, in what proved to be a turning point, Mr. Gethard responded by inviting her to drop by. She did, and she became a regular. By putting her on camera, he showed his audience just how bizarre and fun the ordinary can be.