Last week Raging Bullets celebrated 6 years of podcasting and in around 1 weeks time the show will will hit its landmark 300th episode, which is quite a remarkable number of shows for a podcaste that’s been running for 6 years. I am a big fan of this show and I cannot recommend it too highly to anyone, so below is my small tribute to one of the best podcasts out there.
So please gather round and I will tell you tales of a show host, a man who's enthusiasm and love for comics shines out like the lantern of Oa. How his friend and co-host who in the face of overwhelming odds, still to this day will sing songs for all who will listen and to those that don’t want to listen as well.
What is this strange world I hear you cry, why it’s the world of Sean & Jim the world of The Raging Bullets Podcaste.
I enjoyed that I have always wanted to write a dramatic intro, so I'm glad I got it off my chest.
However, there is another reason that I introduced the show in this way, and that’s because the show has never taken its self too seriously. By that statement I don’t mean that hosts Sean & Jim aren’t serious about comics and what they talk about, quite the contrary they are two of the most dedicated comic fans you could ever hope to meet. What I mean is that they do the show in such a fun, light-hearted and enthusiastic way that it comes over as exactly what it is, two guys with a love of comics who just want to share that love with as many people as possible. When I listen to the show, I always picture the two of them sat in some Cheers type bar talking comics over a few beers. That’s how the show comes over to me; the truth on how the show is put together is probably far from what I picture in my head. But I don’t need to know that, I just have to listen and enjoy, and I have done that week after week for around 4 years now.
The format of the show when it first aired was for Sean the comic fan, to talk comics with Jim who at the time was a lapsed comic fan. They would discuss comics that they had both read, and give their opinions on what they thought of each book. However the format changed as Jim became lapsed no more, and was drawn back into the world of comics. Like many of us Jim was bitten by the comic bug, and was back buying comics on a regular basis. From that point on the shows format was established, two guys talking about comics and comic related topics. They don’t always agree with each other, but they both respect each others opinion. And just as importantly they both love what they were reading or watching, and get that point over to the listeners of the show.
Beyond the world of comics Sean and Jim also talk about TV shows, films, DVD releases and games as long as they have a comic connection they will be included in the show.
Guest interviews have also played a big part of the show over the years, with some of the biggest names in the comic business coming on to the show to talk about their work. There have been many memorable interviews over the years, and it would be unfair to single out just one of them as they all have their own unique merits. However, one that sticks out for me due to its own uniqueness is when Gail Simone interviewed Sean & Jim, while they were attending a comic convention, how cool is that.
Going back to my point of not taking its self too seriously, the guys can sometimes go off on a tangent to places even they werent expecting to go. I have listened to the casting of a Muppet Secret Six, talk on what dead superhero or superhero's body part you would want to own, learned of Jims phobia (I wont give it away) and laughed out load as the merits of the Colgate adds slipped into the spine of comics was debated.
Another of the show unique strengths or some may say weakness’, is Jims willingness to sing at the drop of a hat and by that I mean any hat. I would love to say that Jim had the voice of Sinatra or even a Springsteen, but in all honesty I can’t. But you have got to love the guy because he doesn’t let the fact (dare I say), that he cannot sing stop him. If I’m honest the show would be a lot poorer if Jim didn’t throw in the odd tune, every now and then for us to listen to. For me Jims crowing glory will always be his rendition of New York-New York, from the floor of the New York comic con. I had it as a ring tone for around a year, and its something that will stick with me for years to come (in a good way)
The final piece of the jigsaw that makes Raging Bullets stand out, is its interaction with the shows followers.
Not only during the podcast via voice mails, but also through other social media.
However, it is not enough to be out there on social networks you have to interact, which is where Shaun particularly excels. He is always answering comments left on the pages of the show blog, Facebook and Twitter. This is not an easy thing to do considering he holds down a full time job as a teacher, which in its self must be demanding as well as rewarding. Throw in to the mix his home life (wife), friends and family, and I’m amazed that he is able to balance all of this as well as run a podcast. If he ever decided to write a book about how to manage your time, I will be at the front of the queue to buy it and get it signed.
The show also actively promotes and crosses over with other podcasts and blogs, another of the shows strengths. Below is a list of people all whose shows I listen to and blogs I now read, due to hearing about them on Raging Bullets.
Martin Gray – Too Dangerous for a Girl – blog
Ian Levenstein – Comic Timing – podcast & blog
Bill Giancoli - The Podcast of Oa
Darrell Taylor – The Taylor Network – more podcasts than you can shake a stick at.
Mike Faber - Earth Station One – Podcast.
These are all people I have never met but in one way or another, they have all interacted, advised or helped me in a variety of ways.
These are all people I may not have even heard of, if I hadn’t listened to Raging Bullets.
So I raise my glass of JD & Coke (it is after 6pm) and I salute both Sean & Jim, on reaching the milestone of not just 300 shows but 300 quality shows.
Thank you guys for the last 6 years, may there be many more years and shows to come.