It's dead, Jim
I can’t write a hook for my life right now so I’m not even going to try.
Giant Bomb has been my primary source for gaming news for a long time. I’ve been listening to and watching the people who work(ed) there since the early 2000s when they were working at Gamespot. The online personas of people like Jeff Gerstmann, Vinny Caravella, Alex Navarro, Ryan Davis and Brad Shoemaker have been a constant presence for most of my life.
During pre-COVID times but especially during it, Giant Bomb lost/fired person after person after person. I don’t know why but that’s just what happened. A place like Giant Bomb is nothing without its people so this was a clear sign of them imploding internally.
A few months ago, Vinny, Alex and Brad split from Giant Bomb to start their own gaming podcast/video thing called NextLander (it’s pretty dayum good, you should check it out).
I’m not going to link to Giant Bomb in its current state, it doesn’t deserve any clicks. If you’ve been following that “brand” for as long as I have, then taking a look at their current homepage will reach across time and space and make you pre-emptively roll in your grave.
Giant Bomb is dead.
Current Affairs was a leftist magazine/podcast I discovered during quarantine and quickly fell in love with. Their podcasts were informative, quirky and well-produced. The writing in the magazine was some of the most eloquent and interesting I’ve ever read. It inspired me to actively engage in my passion for writing and become a better writer and I’m grateful for that.
In August 2021, Current Affairs’s founder Nathan J. Robinson attempted to fire staffers for attempting to organize the magazine as a worker-owned co-op. This completely destroyed the “leftist” credibility of the magazine and in one fell swoop killed it dead. I haven’t read an official statement saying that it is or isn’t dead but… no podcast episodes have been posted since July 28th, 2021 and I haven’t received the issue of the magazine that I bought and paid for.
Current Affairs is dead.
There was a time when I considered the Dad and Sons podcast to be my favorite podcast. Every week, I would listen to it, and enjoy what felt like a raw and honest conversation between friends about video games.
The podcast stars resident Youtube man George Weidman of Super Bunnyhop, independent game developer Liam Edwards forged in the hellfire of Rockstar’s QA department and video editor extraordinaire / NFT enthusiast Matt Visual.
Hear ye! Hear ye! I hereby declare that the Dad and Sons podcast is no longer my favorite podcast (check out the Play Watch Listen podcast if four game industry insiders talking about anything and everything sounds interesting to you).
Ignoring that there hasn’t been an episode released in over a month and that this particular episode was particularly shit (we’ll get back to that), over these past few months I’ve enjoyed the podcast less and less.
Liam is busy making his game (wishlist Cursed to Golf today!). Matt is working hard, NFTing after hours and playing all the games in his own personal Hyperbolic Time Chamber. George is trying to be the very best Youtube man he can be so that he can pay the bills (the content machine must be fed).
And it shows.
The most recent episode titled “He Had a Massive Assive” (yes that’s the title, I’m not kidding) was released more than a month ago.
In it, the titular Dads and Sons talk about games, some news and some life stuff (probably, I mean that’s what they always do, I don’t want to listen to this episode again).
Matt and George also “discussed” NFTs. Listening to that part of the episode felt like listening to my parents fight in the other room when I was kid (I don’t read Youtube comments usually but this episode’s comments actually shed some light on what made this episode difficult to listen to).
It’s not a great episode but we could have easily just recorded another one and moved on?
Right? He said desperately.
Right? He said even more desperately.
Apparently not. One week passed, no episode. Another week passed, no episode. Another another week passed, no episode. Another another another week passed, no episode.
George writes a message on the podcast’s Discord server saying that the podcast is on hiatus until further notice without going into details.
Let’s pretend we’re hedge fund managers for a moment here and SPECULATE.
My best guess is that one or more (probably just one) of our hosts has decided to quit the podcast.
- We all witnessed a “real” verbal fight between Matt and George during the episode on the subject of NFTs.
- After the episode’s release, Matt has been getting shit on publicly (and I would guess privately too) about his take on NFTs.
- Matt recently left the Discord server.
It doesn’t take a genius to extrapolate from those facts and guess that the podcast is on hiatus because Matt doesn’t want to participate anymore.
Assuming that this guess is correct, the remaining Dad and Sons (Who are the dads? Who are the sons? Matt is neither!) have to figure out two things:
- Can the podcast survive Matt leaving?
- If the podcast can survive Matt leaving, how?
The Dad and Sons Podcast (as we knew it) is (probably) dead.
One part of me is a voracious consumer telepathically screaming at the screen: “Dance for me monkeys! Dannnnnnnnnnnce fooooooooooooor myyyyyyy pleeeaaaassure… YEeeeeeeeeeesssssssss.”
Another part of me, acknowledges that these entertainers have lives and don’t cease to exist the moment I stop watching or listening to them.
Despite that, there’s something that happens when these people stop dancing for me. Reality collides with fiction. I experience parasocial dissonance when I’m forced to confront the fact that my parasocial relationships are just that… parasocial.
To be clear, these people don’t owe me anything. I’m not mad at anyone. What’s interesting to me is that there’s a, small, portion of my well-being tied to people who I have never met or spoken to in any meaningful way.
I’m glad that barely anyone reads my writing on here (I love you if you do though!). I don’t think I’ve cultivated enough of a following for anyone to care if one day…
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