The Toy Department – Episode 96

In Episode 96, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky have a prettty, prettttttty, prettttttttty good opening before discussions about:

  • Joe Morgan’s letter to the Baseball Hall of Fame (2:10) and how misguided his views on “steroid users” and “cheaters” are…
  • The Martin McDonagh film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (18:05), where it succeeds and where it maybe misses the mark…
  • Netflix’s new western series Godless (28:40) and how it elevates tropes from western films but still doesn’t appeal to Madden…
  • USA’s Mr. Robot (38:10), just what the hell is going on and how an increase in action has not led to an increase in Madden’s enjoyment of episodes…
  • Netflix’s new Spike Lee TV joint She’s Gotta Have It (45:30) and how it hits all the Spike Lee high notes with a great cast and thoughtful commentary…
  • Homework for this week (53:40), including: new albums from both Noel and Liam Gallagher, the Amazon Original show The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, the Netflix/Joe Swanberg show Easy and the Netflix documentary Jim & Andy about Jim Carrey’s performance as Andy Kaufman in Man on the Moon…

By the way, if you like this podcast, TELL A FRIEND!! And if you want to subscribe via iTunes/Stitcher/Google Play/etc. you can just click on the link below the player (and don’t forget to leave us a review!!)… 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 92

In Episode 92, Matt Kolsky and Derek Madden waste no time with pleasantries as they jump directly into:

  • A heated debate over the second season of Netflix’s Stranger Things (0:45) and whether it is in fact any good at all…
  • The new Noah Baumbach film The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) (27:15) and whether it qualifies as bad-time entertainment or somehow rises above that distinction…
  • Madden’s experience at the Arcade Fire concert (38:40) and how all things must end…
  • The 2017 World Series (48:10), the compelling storylines and the future of baseball…
  • The series finale of HBO’s The Deuce (58:55), Kolsky’s confusion over the length of the season and the storytelling style of David Simon and company…
  • The first two episodes of season eight of The Walking Dead (1:06:30) and how the show seems to have lost its direction and momentum…
  • Homework for next week (1:13:30) including: the new (apparent) network sensation The Good Doctor, the also-about-an-autistic-character Atypical, and finishing Netflix’s Mindhunter before an interview with Stacey Roca, the actress who plays Nancy Tench…

By the way, if you like this podcast, TELL A FRIEND!! And if you want to subscribe via iTunes/Stitcher/Google Play/etc. you can just click on the link below the player (and don’t forget to leave us a review!!)… 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 91

In Episode 91, Matt Kolsky and Derek Madden lament the suddenly crowded entertainment landscape before soldiering on to actually talk about some of it, including:

  • Netflix’s new David Fincher-produced series Mindhunter (7:30) and whether it stands up to the impressive Fincher filmography…
  • Another new Netflix show, American Vandal (21:30) and how it plays to a fan of real crime shows versus someone who does not watch them…
  • Beck’s new album Colors (32:20) which surprised both Madden and Kolsky but only really appealed to one of them…
  • MLB’s World Series (41:30) because yes, it is happening RIGHT NOW, and baseball playoffs are pretty entertaining…
  • The NFL season (48:15) and how it has failed to produce any really good teams or much good football so far… Is this the “parity” we’ve been hearing about?
  • Homework for next week (1:09:00) including: Season 2 of Netflix’s Stranger Things, the Netflix film The Meyerowitz Stories, the return of The Walking Dead and catching up on all the many, many TV shows that have gotten underway this month…

By the way, if you like this podcast, TELL A FRIEND!! And if you want to subscribe via iTunes/Stitcher/Google Play/etc. you can just click on the link below the player (and don’t forget to leave us a review!!)… 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 64

In Episode 64, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky discuss Madden’s delightful social life before jumping into:

  • Last week’s homework: the remainder of the Amazon pilots (4:45), Jane the Virgin (14:30) and Mistaken for Strangers (24:05), the movie featuring The National…
  • The season finale of The Walking Dead (38:20) and where the guys stand with the show moving forward…
  • Baseball is back! (49:00) That may or may not be exciting…
  • Tony Romo’s retirement (1:02:20) and jump to the broadcasting booth…
  • Homework for next week (1:12:00): the new Louis CK special on Netflix, the new IFC show Brockmire (starring Hank Azaria as a baseball announcer), and the season premiere of Better Call Saul… plus hopefully Madden finally listens to Kweku Collins…
  • Some final thoughts on Legion (1:15:50) on the way out the door…

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 60

In Episode 60, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky kvetch about their various ailments like the couple of aging Jews that they are before jumping into deep discussions of:

  • The diverse television landscape (1:55) including chats about: FX’s The Americans & Legion (10:30), NBC’s The Good Place (12:45), the new Ryan Murphy series Feud (16:25), the new CW Archie adaptation Riverdale (22:10) and the reboot of Must-See-TV’s Will & Grace (27:45)…
  • A week at the movies!! Kolsky saw Logan (32:45) and gives a quick review before an in-depth discussion of the new horror darling Get Out (35:30) which both guys saw and enjoyed…
  • Cleaning up some old homework (49:40) as Madden failed to listen to the new Loyle Carner album but both guys are ready to discuss the new Cloud Nothings album Life Without Sound, which was the previous week’s homework assignment…
  • The World Baseball Classic (57:55) and exactly what the hell baseball is trying to do here… with a little bit of discussion about international sporting tournaments in general…
  • Next week’s homework (1:07:05) wherein Madden promises to listen to Loyle Carner and a couple of new TV shows will be back on the table as well…

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 50

In Episode 50, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky open with an only moderately upsetting discussion of their respective ailments before getting to the real dope, including:

  • TBS’s binge-ready and binge-worthy show Search Party (4:15) and how it manages to succeed as a mystery despite not caring much about the plot of its own mystery… Leading to some thoughts on the way TBS is producing content (14:25) right now…
  • Following up on last week’s musical homework, as the guys continue to explore the differences in their musical taste: Kolsky listened to Metallica’s Hardwired… To Self Destruct (18:05) to please Madden… and Madden listened to Childish Gambino’s Awaken, My Love! (29:35) to please Kolsky… Spoiler Alert: they do not agree on either record…
  • A look at the National Football League (41:00) as it heads down the home stretch… Specifically, the league seems to have found the “parity” it has allegedly been seeking for some time now — but is this a good thing?
  • Major League Baseball’s new anti-hazing policy (56:10) and whether it marks a significant change in approach…
  • Some homework for next week (1:08:15): The Toy Department Takes On the Classics will return, as Kolsky and Madden will watch the documentary film Scratch (a true, if somewhat undiscovered classic) and revisit the classic Clash album London Calling…

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 45

In Episode 45, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky lament their rapidly-advancing age before diving into discussions about:

  • The World Series, briefly (1:15) acknowledging that the final results will be determined before anyone listens… The conversation tilts more towards the impressive future potential of the Cubs (3:05) and the Hall of Fame career of GM Theo Epstein (5:55)… Ending with a discussion of baseball’s place in the sports media landscape (11:10)…
  • Episode 2 of Netflix’s new Black Mirror season – Play Test (15:40) which had a very different effect on Kolsky than it did on Madden…
  • A quick stop on HBO’s Westworld, which Kolsky failed to successfully watch after a Phish show on Sunday night (29:05)…
  • ROCKTOBER continues, so more concert talk – Kolsky went to see Phish play a Halloween show (32:25)… Madden went to see Yelawolf (35:40)…
  • The season finale (and the first season in sum) of FX’s Atlanta (44:45)… How there’s not enough of it… How well executed it is in the end (45:50) and just in general in delivering a truthful narrative (48:43)…
  • Another FX favorite, You’re the Worst (51:00) and whether it’s struggling a bit in its third season…
  • A couple notes on homework for next week, which involves Bill Simmons’ show Any Given Wednesday (56:20) and the next episode of Black Mirror, “Shut Up and Dance” (58:25)…

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 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 40

In Episode 40 (hard to believe we’ve made it this far) Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky woke up extra early to talk to you about LOTS of television things and a bit of sports, including:

  • TV sitcoms in general (2:00) and the return/premiere of a few specific ones: The Good Place (4:40) and (following some digressions, like a few minutes about high school melodrama and a couple on The Voice) Brooklyn Nine-Nine (20:20) and New Girl (21:55)…
  • A little more on the achievement that is Donald Glover and FX’s triumphant show, Atlanta (30:15)…
  • The season finale of HBO’s Vice Principals (35:00) and whether the guys are on board with the surprising end to the season… Followed by a check-in with HBO’s less edgy comedy, Ballers (38:40)…
  • Some thoughts on the new Kiefer Sutherland vehicle Designated Survivor (42:20)… Which leads to a bit of meditation on the nature of show development in this over-populated TV landscape, particularly for major networks…
  • The San Francisco Giants and their wild second-half collapse (53:15)… They’ve been BAD since the All-Star break, and the guys try to figure it all out…
  • HOMEWORK!! (1:00:05) We have learned that Derek Madden is terrible at doing his homework… And yet he continues to assign homework to others!

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 39

In Episode 39, Derek Madden and Matt Kolsky return just a day late thanks to scheduling conflicts and bring you discussion of:

  • Their collective disappointment with USA’s Mr. Robot (1:15) and its apparent disinterest in moving the plot along…
  • The start of the NFL season, from Terrell Suggs’ amazing appearance on HBO’s Ballers (19:10) to the love they have for the return of regular season football (22:35) despite the discomfort some NFL issues cause to a quick look at a couple of specific teams and situations…
  • The end of the MLB season (32:10) and how it seems like almost nobody is watching it at all… Plus a little love for home-run-hitting machine Brian Dozier of the Minnesota Twins (41:50)…
  • A few thoughts on EPL Soccer (45:40) and it’s availability as a pregame show for NFL football…
  • CM Punk’s UFC debut (50:55) and whether he actually has any chance to make any progress in the new phase of his career…
  • FX’s new show Better Things (55:55) and how it allows Pamela Adlon to do what Louis CK did before her… and how it relates to Louie and FX’s other new show, Atlanta (57:00)…
  • An assorted mishmash of topics to end the show (1:03:15), including discussion of homework and Kolsky’s distaste for Fred Armisen…

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.