One of the best things about Succession was Geoff Lloyd and Sara Barron’s watch-along podcast, Firecrotch & Normcore.
The two formed a double act to rival Tom and Greg, as hilarious in their marital banter as they were rigorous in their analysis, and far less toxic than the self-proclaimed Disgusting Brothers – but maybe just as bawdy.
It says a lot that HBO had its own official podcast for the show but that, come the final season, Lloyd and Barron were seemingly landing interviews with whomever they fancied.
Although I’m surprised that Jesse Armstrong braved an appearance after all of Barron’s creepy love letters to the unsuspecting showrunner.
After mourning the loss of a drama that warranted such a deep dive, they returned with a new podcast that’s more of a sift through this tsunami of series we find ourselves in. True to form, They Like to Watch is another great name, and one just as salacious.
If anything, Lloyd and Barron’s eclectic taste will give you some unique recommendations. I’m all for their advocacy of sleeper hits such as the idiosyncratic obs-doc How To with John Wilson and the hipster’s hitman, Mr Inbetween.
Having said that, their unfavourable views of The Bear are downright criminal.
They also admirably incorporate documentaries – a genre that doesn’t always receive the cultural clout it deserves, bar the odd sensationalised true-crime-of-the-day. Check out their passionate discussion of Once Upon a Time in Northern Ireland.
I haven’t even mentioned the interviews yet, which are often both enlightening and a hoot. Sarah Phelps was fascinating on the painstaking process of writing her sensitive true-crime hit The Sixth Commandment; Greg Davies and Alex Horne were on riotous form in a recent episode on Taskmaster.
Often, their listeners and interviewees recommend series that the couple then watch in the following weeks – it was Phelps who introduced them to Mr Inbetween. And they devote the last 10 minutes of each episode to fan mail, sent to their still brilliant email address that doubles as a legacy of the late Logan Roy: email@example.com.
It is touches like these that lend the podcast a kind of intimate book club feel, albeit one that stays much more on topic (it’s my experience that book clubs tend to be little more than an excuse for a day-drink and a chinwag).
To butcher a catchphrase of Barron’s that, thankfully, has not caught on, They Like to Watch is one hundy P listeny listeny (100%).