The Toy Department – Episode 76

In Episode 76, Derek Madden finds Matt Kolsky on vacation in sunny Portland, Oregon to chat about:

  • A check-in with the NBA’s insane free agency season (2:35) with special focus on the now-even-more-loaded Western Conference…
  • The romantic comedy film The Big Sick (29:35), its writer and star Kumail Nanjiani and some of the other excellent acting performances…
  • The action/crime adventure Baby Driver (41:25) and how well director Edgar Wright executed his unique and engaging vision…
  • Jay-Z’s new record 4:44 (53:20), how he fits into the hip hop landscape and what it reflects about his actual relationship with Beyoncé…
  • The 1973 album Betty Davis by Betty Davis (1:09:35), a powerhouse of funk that neither Madden nor Kolsky had heard of two weeks ago…
  • Some homework for next week (1:14:05): the FX show Snowfall, along with whatever else Madden and Kolsky decide on during the week…
  • A couple of final thoughts on the food scene in Chicago (1:15:30), where Kolsky will be for next week’s recording…

By the way, if you like this podcast, TELL A FRIEND!! And if you want to subscribe via iTunes you can just click on the link below the player (and don’t forget to leave us a review!!)… Some other links down there as well… And if you want to contact the Toy Department, it’s easy — find us at ToyDepartmentPod (at) gmail.com… or tweet us: @MaddenOnAir & @thekolsky.

The Toy Department – Episode 57

In Episode 57, Derek Madden allows Matt Kolsky to sneak in a bizarre tribute to Morris Day & the Time before diving in to:

  • General discussion of the Grammy Awards (2:10) and what an awards show is really for in our current popular culture landscape…
  • The new FX show Legion (23:55) and whether Madden was able to get past his anti-superhero stance and enjoy some high-quality new television…
  • The return of HBO’s Girls (33:20) and what exactly is going on with people who don’t like Lena Dunham…
  • The NBA’s recent twists and turns and soap operas: the return of Kevin Durant to Oklahoma City (40:10) and Charles Oakley’s tiff with the Knicks (49:10)

By the way, if you like this podcast, TELL A FRIEND!! And if you want to subscribe via iTunes you can just click on the link below the player… Some other links down there as well… And if you want to contact the Toy Department, it’s easy — find us at ToyDepartmentPod (at) gmail.com… or tweet us: @MaddenOnAir & @thekolsky.

The Toy Department – Episode 53

In Episode 53, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky fail to apologize for Kolsky’s degraded audio quality OR the day-late nature of this episode, so please accept this as an apology (sorry, y’all) as you listen to their discussions about:

  • Last week’s homework assignment: Scott Van Pelt’s SportsCenter (2:00)… The guys discuss how it stands out from other SportsCenter programming and whether it represents a new avenue for that brand moving forward…
  • College football’s National Championship game (11:30), but less about the game and more about Kolsky’s continuing distaste for NCAA pigskin in general… and the differences between college and professional football…
  • The NFL playoffs (25:30) specifically the games of Divisional weekend and how they project to be significantly more entertaining that last weekend’s Wild Card action…
  • Coachella!! (35:50) The lineup was announced (and it’s great) but the guys also discuss the controversy over the political contributions of AEG, the festival’s parent company…
  • The (relatively) new Netflix show Easy (54:25) – a show that both Madden and Kolsky enjoy, directed by Chicagoland native and Kolsky kindred spirit Joe Swanberg…
  • Some homework (1:01:15) for next week: including, but not limited to, watching some Oscar contender films, the Kids In The Hall classic movie Brain Candy, and the new FX show Taboo…

By the way, if you like this podcast, TELL A FRIEND!! And if you want to subscribe via iTunes you can just click on the link below the player… Some other links down there as well… And if you want to contact the Toy Department, it’s easy — find us at ToyDepartmentPod (at) gmail.com… or tweet us: @MaddenOnAir & @thekolsky.

The Toy Department – Episode 42

In Episode 42, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky briefly address Kolsky’s in-progress Yom Kippur fast before delving into:

  • The San Francisco Giants’ elimination from the MLB playoffs (3:50) and some discussion about baseball at large (10:20)…
  • Kolsky’s homework assignment for Madden – Netflix/Marvel’s Luke Cage (20:35) and Madden’s anti-superhero/comic book bias…
  • Madden’s homework assignment for Kolsky – the previously British and now Netflix-owned Black Mirror (32:40) and how it really inspires thought and discussion like few other television experiences…
  • HBO’s new comedy Insecure (43:50) and how it brings another original perspective to the increasingly diverse television landscape…
  • Madden’s experience at a recent Kanye West show (52:20) and the big stadium show experience in general…
  • A bit of talk about last week’s You’re the Worst (1:01:05) but MOSTLY just because it leads into Madden’s experiences at fancy, exclusive bars as a big time radio star in Los Angeles…
  • Homework for next week (1:08:05) wherein Kolsky assigns the new Solange album to Derek…

By the way, if you like this podcast, TELL A FRIEND!! And if you want to subscribe via iTunes you can just click on the link below the player… Some other links down there as well… And if you want to contact the Toy Department, it’s easy — find us at ToyDepartmentPod (at) gmail.com.

The Toy Department – Episode 20

In Episode 20, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky begin by lamenting their physical fitness – as all aging men are wont to do – before things get serious with Madden’s Beyoncé mea culpa (3:45). The conversation heads deeper into the music world with some discussion of Radiohead’s new single (17:10), which leads them into music release strategies for the modern world. Sports talk takes over  (30:10) with some breakdown of the wild final sequence of Game 2 between the Spurs and Thunder in the NBA Playoffs, and some resulting chatter about referees in general, before Madden and Kolsky address Fox’s hiring of sports “journalist” Skip Bayless (41:35). The show wraps with a little homework assignment from Madden (55:40) and a shout-out to our outgoing President.

Oh, and if you want to subscribe via iTunes you can just click on the link below the player… Some other links down there as well… And if you want to contact the Toy Department, it’s easy — find us at ToyDepartmentPod (at) gmail.com.

The Toy Department – Episode 19

In Episode 19, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky waste no time before going deep into a Prince tribute. After paying proper tribute to the Purple Gawd, they move on to another pop superstar with a discussion of Beyoncé and her Lemonade release (24:00) which leads some debate about what a pop star really is in the modern music world (around 48:00). Then some quick-hitters to finish the show: Game of Thrones Season 6 premiere reaction (57:15), the #MoreThanMean video and its important message about women on sports twitter (1:08:20) and the foul ball segment on HBO’s Real Sports (1:16:25).

Oh, and if you want to subscribe via iTunes you can just click on the link below the player… Some other links down there as well… And if you want to contact the Toy Department, it’s easy — find us at ToyDepartmentPod (at) gmail.com.

The Toy Department – Episode 10

In Episode 10, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky start with a quick post-Super Bowl debrief – did Kolsky survive? How did his dumplings turn out? (that’s a literal question) Then it’s the Great Coldplay Debate (9:00) as the gentlemen stake out their positions and duke it out. After probably too much of that (though not as much as existed on the original recording) the topic shifts to movie talk with a breakdown of the Oscar-nominated Spotlight (33:50), followed by a brief discussion of the Grammy’s and other assorted music stuff (42:00). Finally, a strong close where a purported tease to next week turns into a short conversation about JJ Redick’s new podcast (46:30).

Oh, and if you want to subscribe via iTunes (and you really should), just CLICK HERE!!  We are also part of the Google Play library of podcasts (and hopefully will have a link to that soon)… And if you want to contact the Toy Department, it’s easy — find us at ToyDepartmentPod (at) gmail.com.