Did a “tragic server crash” really claim the first six episodes of Peter Baynham and Jeremy Simmonds’ new podcast, Brain Cigar? Just like the world events and cultural moments the writers imagine in the series, it may never have happened.
Either way, it doesn’t matter. The podcast picks up where episode six would probably have left off – lost and confused in their realm of glorious nonsense.
The duo abandon logic and linearity to present a hotchpotch of ludicrous stories with the utmost seriousness. Think Baynham and Chris Morris’s surrealist satires such as The Day Today and Brass Eye.
Just moments into the first episode and Simmonds extols the virtues of an “upstairs basement flat” he has found when house hunting: “You get the benefit of natural light but the security of being underground... I think it’s for people with very serious emotional problems.”
Or very serious memory problems, as both go on to reminisce about all sorts of events and products that never existed. So clearly do they remember “Bowie Dinners” (David Bowie’s early 1990s range of microwaveable meals), they can even quote the advert: “After a tough day in the studio, I need something quick.”
Joining them are cameos just as hilarious and cognitively challenged, such as Julia Davis’s Heather Woodley. Heather goes on air to promote her charity Loneliness Action UK only to reveal that she allowed her own father to suffer from loneliness to the point of suicide, despite living three doors down the road from him.
So why not tune in, turn off your brain, and have a riotous wander around the “upstairs basement” that is Brain Cigar.