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Episode 28: The Indoor Kids
Growing Up Nerd (with Chris …
The Indoor KidsThe Indoor Kids

The Indoor Kids #28: Growing Up Nerd (with Chris Hardwick)

Grandmaster Nerdist himself, Chris Hardwick, drops in to discuss growing up nerdy, obsessing over things and how he learned to use those obsessive qualities for good rather than evil: for instance, using them to save Hyrule or Skyrim from Ganon and the dragon threat, respectively. He also shares tips on how to game while still being productive in other aspects of your life. It’s Chris Hardwick! What, are you not gonna listen?

And email us at [email protected]!

Special thanks to Carvin for supplying us with the equipment we need to record this podcast! Check out for more information on recording equipment, guitars, amps and more!

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  1. Jo says:

    In my mind that comment sounded so much more cohesive…*sighs* my apologies. 😛

  2. Jo says:

    So…I have been a somewhat regular listener of the podcast since a little before the hostful episodes started. I have never made a comment before, merely content to soak in the nerdtastic audio in my ears. I was about to listen to this podcast for the first time, because of the presence of Mr. Hardwick. But now I have changed my mind after reading the comments. I am a Christian, I try to be a tolerant one…I have taken the profanity and compare it to what I hear at work, so I ignore it while enjoying all the geeky humor.

    I too have noticed a general feeling of disdain towards religious people. This has bothered me recently, especially as I try to share with my boyfriend. “Well if you ignore the profanity, dear…”
    I was not surprised at all the conversation that ensued with Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, I have seen videos of him on Youtube making his opinions quite evident. I still respect him immensely for the scientific work he has done, and how well he promotes science to the general public.

    All this being said, I appreciated the kind comment from Mr. Hardwick. I do plan to listen to the main podcast and a few of the other ones for a long time. Or at least as long as I have working internet…and my conscience allows.

    P.S. I also wanted to thank for making me a budding Whovian. I had seen a couple episodes with the 9th Doctor when I was on vacation and never saw it again, until recently. I blame that on a mixture of, Craig Ferguson, and my boyfriend (mostly my boyfriend). 🙂

  3. Zachary Cole says:

    Christian backlash? Oy. Interesting to see how popular podcasts balance discussing reality with trying to appease a mass audience (an audience that, at least in the US, is almost entirely religious). Good luck, Nerdist!

  4. Jodester says:

    I feel so bad that people have had such bad church experiences. I think that God is less about control and more about love. We are all hypocrites. There are idiots in any belief system. I wish that media would highlight amazing things not only the idiots and their loud ramblings.

  5. Nich Hustler says:

    Thanks for popping in to say what you said Chris. I myself was getting a little bit upset over the comments and trying to remain neutral for the exact reasons you just mentioned. Obviously it’s tough because faith is maybe more personal than say, the clothing you where. Or maybe it’s not to some. So yeah, that’s that really.

    Indoor Kids Team, please keep up the good work. Love the show lots and lots.

  6. Phil Medoc says:

    Reading these comments just rolled the eyes out of my head.

    Good podcast folks, thanks.

  7. Walter says:

    *Spoiler* Skyrim* I am done with Skyrim. The game has major flaws. I love what they tried to do, but in the end it was a flawed unfinished game. There is no continuity with anything you do. You can be involved in major story line events with a NPC, but as soon as you start a different quest chain with that same NPC they act like they are meeting you for the first time. Most accomplishment in the game are ignored and will get only a passing reference by guards if you’re lucky. There doesn’t seemed to be consequences for the major choices you make. You can still join the imperials even if you followed the storm cloak guy at the beginning. And no one seems to care after you save the world from the dragon Apocalypse! Also, way too easy to level up and get the best gear in the game, which also no one seems to notice. I was still getting the “You don’t look like much” from NPC while I was in full Daedric armor. Full Daedric armor, Dragon born, leader of the companions, negotiated a temporary peace between the storm cloaks and imperials, saved the world from the dragon apocalypse, CAN BREATH FIRE… yet none of that acknowledged by the the Storm cloaks when I wanted to join their ranks and ask to kill an Ice wraith to “prove myself worthy”. Overall give it a “C” for effort, but as a RPG it fails miserably with the story continuity.

  8. Blappy Mason says:

    “I think it’s just been coming up a lot lately, all over Nerdist industries, in a not-totally-jokey fashion. I think there was an assumption that most listeners aren’t religious, and that sort of “talking about it like they’re not in the room” kinda feel might be what incited these feelings about it all.” -Reed

    I think more than anything else thats the issue. Not that Religious Nerds are easily offended, or being pussies etc, its that overall, the perception at nerdist industries is: there is a general “Understanding” that anybody that is religious is silly and hey lets humor them but we all know they’re crazy right?

    “You made it weird”, “Indoor Kids” “Nerdist” and “Sexnerd” have had shows where an unmistakable anti-religious slant is assumed. I’m not crying or anything like that, just noticed a consensus. Thought it was just me, but, after reading Reed’s comments I realized someone else noticed. also, and this probably isnt even what was intended but, saying how you really feel and then falling back on “I’m a comic, its an exaggeration” isnt really fighting fair, lol. regardless…

    People are free to believe whatever, and it LITERALLY doesnt affect me much. I am Christian and I enjoy almost ALL of nerdist industries’ content, I just wonder if being called delusional for my beliefs ‘pretty often’ is worth the extremely entertaining show content.
    I still LOVE Chris, Kumail, Emily, Sarah, Jonah, and Matt, and cant wait to hear the new episodes of your respective shows!!!!!!

  9. Reed says:

    “how about you toughen up and quit caring instead of expecting others to be more sensitive”

    Totally fair, as long as you’d say that to people of any background, religion, race, or sexual orientation who feel they’re being condescended to or treated unfairly.

    “Evidenced perfectly by the this show comment thread notably look how christians take offense as always assuming they are the ONLY religion in the country.”

    Making the SAME generalizations that Christians make about other religions and secularists.

    Thanks for your kindness, Chris, Kumail, and Emily. Goodbye internet, you mostly suck.

  10. warship satin says:

    how about you toughen up and quit caring instead of expecting others to be more sensitive

  11. Jim says:

    Honestly there shouldn’t BE debate of science vs religion. Religion doesn’t use logic, and science cares little for the metaphysical. The whole stupid topic rises from a lay debate, and quite honestly from the religous quarters which lash out when anything, they percieve as dangerous, rolls in front of them.

    Evidenced perfectly by the this show comment thread notably look how christians take offense as always assuming they are the ONLY religion in the country.

    SAecularist ftw.

  12. Matt10 says:

    People get all upset at right wing religious folks and the candidates who cater to them, but there’s really no need. Here in the Western U.S. there is a growing number of atheists. There’s no one recruiting them, people are just becoming atheists. Soon we will see atheist candidates running for office in this country.

    As an agnostic Christian I’d rather see an atheist government quite frankly. The leaders in religions and the government leaders who cater to them seem so doom and gloom these days that their radical ideas just drive more young folks to atheism. Atheists will work for a better, cleaner world for the future while the radical Christians who are outspoken in the media are looking forward to the apocalypse. All I have to do is wait and as the Christian voting block that somehow either deadlocks Congress or tries to unsuccessfully save the souls of Americans through oppressive legislation will sour more people on religious dominance.

    The conservatives who try to pretty much break down the separation between church and state in this country will eventually alienate so many people that a better future is certain. You can’t ever get through to a Republican when you try to talk sense to them so just let it erode their own movement.

    Anyway, on video games I thought that there would be whole episodes dedicated to Skyrim at this point. Or Arkham City. At least one on movie-licensed games (or a couple) would be neat ideas.

  13. AlphaCentauri says:

    TRS80!!! That brings back some fond memories. I still remember visiting the local Radio Shack and picking up the latest text game. They were on a cassette tape in a big ziploc bag with a one page graphic like you would see on the front of a adventure fiction novel. So much fun and frustration at the same time. Pick up the stick. Kill the snake with the stick. WTF! What do you mean I can’t pick up the stick!!!

  14. Kumail Nanjiani says:

    Thanks for listening, everyone! I want to echo what Chris said here. It was never our intention to marginalize anybody. We were generalizing because that’s what comics do, and I am sorry if you felt left out or were offended. The vast majority of religious people are obviously kind and loving and non-judgemental, and there is a very vocal minority that uses religion to divide people. I guess that’s what we were talking about.

    Again, we welcome people of all religious beliefs & faiths. The good that religion has done far outweighs the bad, in my opinion. And I am sorry if you got anything other than that impression during the episode. I thank you guys for understanding, & for calling us out on this. You being honest & frank with your feelings & criticism makes hosting this podcast so satisfying, whether they be about videogames or religion or the Mario Bros. Movie.

    You guys rock!


  15. Matt C. says:

    I totally get what Chris was saying with religions being a set of beliefs that people follow because they’re easy to understand and require less work on your part to think through everything yourself from scratch. I was raised Roman Catholic but my family was never really religious, we’re Catholic but outside of church we never really let it affect our normal lives (besides my stereotypical super religious aunt). I pretty much took all my beliefs as they were taught to me in Catholic school, with the liberal twist my parents raised me with (example: gay marriage is against our beliefs, but who are we to push our beliefs on others.) When I hit senior year of high school however I really started to look at the ideas I was taught and now I have my own ideas of morality, religion, God, and the afterlife. I do still identify as a Catholic for the convenience and ease of already knowing where and how to attend a service and I do still hate Catholic stereotypes, but I recognize the legitimate problems with the Catholic church and disagree heavily with some stances from the church and christians in general.

  16. Zach Coty says:

    On the note of playing everything: That’s the really cool thing about the podcast and the nerdist network as a whole. Everyone getting together and listening to the shows, and you all having all these different shows with different focuses and all these guests allows collectively everything to be covered. That’s pretty cool

  17. onReload says:

    It’s so bizarre how stark those 2600 carts are. I feel like they might as well say, “golf. it’s fucking golf.”

  18. btribble says:

    Interrupting the religious debate for something really important from the episode… 2600 cart label variations! The original (1978) label for Golf actually had the nice artwork from the box…

    While a later 1980 cart label update went for the more “minimalist” look…

    And we also can’t forget the Sears (SEARS!!!) distributed version, which is even less detailed…

    Of course, the cartridge makes sure the player knows to use the joystick, and not the “paddle” or “driving” controllers. They are all also sure to explain that the game is “9 holes”.

    I think the practice of “generic sports title” ended with Nintendo’s early entries for the NES. While we did have “Golf” (1985):

    While Atari later made “Realsports” 2600 games and Sega made “Great” Master System sports lines, the first game I remember really distinguishing itself is SNK’s “Lee Trevino’s Fighting Golf” (1988). Why “fighting” I don’t know. Probably a Japanese thing. The NES game was a port of the arcade game.

    By the time of the Sega Genesis / Mega Drive, the first sports games for the system already had licenses attached – “Arnold Palmer Tournament Golf” (1989).

    Interestingly enough, the Japanese version had a Japanese player licensed – “Naomichi Ozaki no Super Masters”:

    Okay, back to the religion debate. 😀

  19. Vincent S says:

    ^ XD Chris Hardwick as a hipster douchebag! Not even remotely close. :/ Jonah’s gonna have to find a new shtick. 😛

    Since I’m on the other side of the main topic (it’s going to be from these responses :/), I’ve been trying to be more tolerant of the other side. It’s kinda hard not to criticize/ point out observations since I’ve gorwn up catholic BUT I do realise that I’m criticizing people, that get hurt by comments… admittedly just comments (it’s not a baseball bat to the face). Oddly enough this attempt to be more socially tolerant to non-atheists has been brought up by Chris on Nerdist.

    Then again Chris is a comic, this is a comedian and funny person (new NerdMelt/ freelance tamborinist) hosted podcast and they can talk about whatever they want. If you’ve listened before to the more “controversial” episodes in TIK, you’ll know that Kumail, Emily and the guest can put out comments in a comedic and exagerrated light. They’ve talked about this before. If the people who are offended have listened to the TIK or Nerdist for this long they should have expected this because it is what comes with the episodes.

    The bigger problem here is that this wasn’t discussed in the intro of the show.

  20. newjerseyrefugee says:

    Much thanks and appreciation to Chris on weighing in. All forgiveness back at you. I think moderate Christians tend to be sensitive to over-generalizations since most of the worst members of our faith ruin our reputation through over-generalization.

    Seriously hoping my girlfriend gets me Nerdist Live tickets for my birthday.

  21. frank anon says:

    What’s with the hipster d-bag on TIK?

  22. Fausto rivera says:

    I forgive you grandmaster. Also I’m a fan of the Beatles. ROCK ON!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. Reed says:

    It’s all good… I think it’s just been coming up a lot lately, all over Nerdist industries, in a not-totally-jokey fashion. I think there was an assumption that most listeners aren’t religious, and that sort of “talking about it like they’re not in the room” kinda feel might be what incited these feelings about it all.

    I’m a comic too… But, heh… Not everything I say is a joke. ‘Sall.

  24. Chris Hardwick says:

    Religious nerds! Please don’t feel like I’m attacking you! I’m not! As comics, we generalize. That’s what we do because it’s just impossible to take every individual person/place/thing into account. You probably laughed at other stuff where things were generalized about other people but didn’t notice because it had nothing to do with you. Obviously, not all religious people are like that. We’re comedians and this is a comedy show so just remember it’s not a lecture. I wouldn’t take anything we say too seriously. You guys are super sweet so please forgive my trying to over-simplify and/or mis-categorizing your beliefs! I think everyone should get to believe whatever feels right for them. Except rapists. Not so much them.


  25. garyancheta says:

    RE: the people who write the books…

    Something to consider for those of you who want to create video games…the best major you can get in college is a history, literature, or archeology major. In history, literature and archeology, you write papers about the past and you read a lot of first to second person accounts of the past. Video game creators love this because you can authentically write in a tone that sets your work in those events and create interesting books for the video game that are different than the guy who is just making it up based on movies, television, or fiction.

  26. Fausto Rivera says:

    I wish I could have been at that podcast because it feels like to me that they were saying that all religious people are the same. I believe gay people can marry because if they can’t who cares, we will only find out that and many answers in the afterlife. Also I am catholic because I feel happy by it’s simple rules, closeness to everything, and just the openness. Finally I hate the people in politics who take things word for word. P.s. I am a catholic of 16 years old who is generally liberal on some issues and moderate on others. P.s.s. I also believe that we evolved from lesser animals but jot from monkeys I want to say more but. I’ll stop

  27. Rob P says:

    its a indoor kids monday miracle !!!
    i love you guys i was waiting for hardwick to be on the show .

  28. Jeremiah Beyondurant says:

    I knew as soon as the topic of religion came up (as interesting as it was) there would be alot of comments on the subject… Listen everyone’s faith is weird… They didn’t mean anything by it

  29. Ben Clarkson says:

    Glad you guys are reading Ready Player One!

    I stayed up late and read DC Pierson’s book last night.

    I’d say fans of the show need to check that out as well.

    Very good.

  30. Reed says:

    (and based on the posts here, obviously lotsa people felt that way… so, yunno, maybe we’re blowing it up a bit, but obviously it wasn’t 100% considerate… Also, for an interesting discussion on being a “sensitive atheist,” listen to the last Never Not Funny that Andy Kindler appeared on… Season 9 I think… it may give you guys a different perspective to consider that’s not just us Jesus folk defending ourselves. ;))

  31. Reed says:

    AJ: I think there’s this idea that religious people listen to other religious people, so there’d be something we could do internally… But that’s not the case (at least in my experience.

    In my life, I’ve received varying levels of distaste/intolerance/hate from both atheists and religious people, Democrats and Republicans, and everything in between. I’m from a part of Christianity with very specific beliefs, and I’ve never felt any connection to other parts of Christianity.

    So, as far as doing more to stop extremism and encroachment on rights… Well all I can say is that, I’m part of an organized religion, and based on my religious beliefs, I don’t go to war, I don’t vote on who can marry who, I don’t target and attack other religions, I don’t rally for censorship, I don’t hold my own country over others (really appreciated Kumail’s distaste for overzealous nationalism last week)… And that’s all I can do, because lots of other religious people do those things, and I’ve never had the ability to change their minds.

    This is really an argument of the group vs. the individual being completely different discussions, because organized religion isn’t a single organization; it’s lots of very different ones, and I feel like we deserve recognition for that. So, I’m over here, good ol’ individual me, and still being essentially told that what I believe is dumb because of someone else. You may have not tuned in to it, but like Scott up there posted, it was pretty condescending (saying it’s an “easy way to live,” etc).

    So main point: We gotta make sure we’re bein’ nice to each other, doodz. That’s all it really is. Believe what you wanna believe about the merits of religion, but it sorta reveals what someone really thinks, to be so naturally sensitive to people of all ethnicities, sexual orientations, and tastes, but then be pretty condescending to people who believe in God. :/

  32. Aj says:

    Starship Titanic is one of my all time favourites! If you like point-click puzzle games (like Myst, Riven & the like) & agree that Douglas Adams was a genius; then it’s definitely something you’d enjoy!

    Re: Religious commentary, comedic hyperbole aside, I couldn’t see anything wrong with anything Kumail, Emily or Chris, were saying, particularly about the hypocrisy of organised religion (& they acknowledged that faith & faith based community were totally fine) just that encroachments of theocratic extremism (from any source) is a bad thing & maybe if the more “tolerant”/moderate christians spoke out against it, secularists wouldn’t sound so angry (because we’re tired of being the only people trying to deal with it).

  33. Robbie Keizer says:

    well its about time Hardwick was on this podcast…

  34. newjerseyrefugee says:

    Hey all. Love Nerdist. Enjoy most of the podcasts. Can’t wait for Nerdist Live in Chicago. That said, the less than compassionate discussion on Christianity and religion is tough to listen to. I’ve never seen my faith as motivated by hate, fear or control. I don’t want to get into a diatribe, but it is difficult for your Christian fans to listen to Nerdist podcasts sometimes without feeling alienated and unwanted. I don’t want you to censor yourself but please acknowledge that one can be a nerd, a Christian and a tolerant progressive individual at the same time.

  35. Brandon says:

    whoo! I love that Chris was on the podcast!

    However, Im still waiting for the glorious day when I come home from work on a Monday, go to the site, and see that the special guest is Bagel.

  36. Stephen says:

    Starship Titanic was made by Douglas Adams, the author of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. He is my favorite author of all time and it made me super happy when Chris mentioned Starship Titanic! Just though I’d share that.

  37. Reed says:

    Please note that I’m really not “offended.” It’s not like I’m in an uproar. It’s kind of a little feeling-hurty thing.

    Also note that I wouldn’t say anything if Chris were just a hateful asshole (or even if his humor was based on playing a hateful asshole). There’d be no point in discussing this with a hateful asshole. It’s just that, in this case, seeing how positive and kind he is about most things… I.E. how nice he is about everyone’s right to their own taste in comedy that others may agree is awful… It just hurts to be seen as a part of the ONE thing such a nice person hates.

  38. Handy says:

    I’m also going to weigh in on the religion debate, but on the other side.

    Talk about whatever you want, it doesn’t offend me.

  39. SHOGUN says:

    Religion…”It’s for the burbs’ man”

  40. Gary Bravender says:

    Great Show! Entertaining as hell! Chris is brutally honest on so many things that too many gloss over.I commend him for speaking his mind.

  41. Reed says:

    I have to weigh in on the religion issue as well…

    Chris: You’re SO accepting of so many different viewpoints, so much more than many other comics, and your positivity and sincerity usually brightens my day. However, knowing that you’re so accepting of so many people makes it sting like HELL when you’re thoughtless (at best) toward religious people.

    I love science. By definition, I’m not a creationist (I don’t believe the earth was created in 7 days, and many natural Darwinian principles totally fit into my beliefs… I just believe humans were created on purpose). I don’t like this argument, but it’s true that so much of the science surrounding the origins of the universe is based on theory which can easily fall apart. Ultimately, atheist ideas about the origins of the universe are no more provable than religious ideas… I don’t see why that tips in favor of one or the other, but many atheists who bring that up seem to feel that it tips in their favor. I just don’t get that confrontational attitude…

    Now, me personally? I hate being lumped in with the Westboro Baptist Church, when my religion is what taught me to love people. It has nothing to do with that hateful nonsense. I’m part of a religion which is politically neutral; we just want the right to share our beliefs, because we feel it’s our responsibility… NOT to force them, but to make them available, using freedom of speech, and we defend our right to do so in the supreme court, and that’s the extent of our involvement in government. We don’t force our beliefs through legislature. Do you know how much good that does for the separation of church & state? A LOT. I wish we got credit for it, but instead, we get lumped in with a bunch of domineering egomaniacs who don’t realize that their principles have no value if the people forced to obey them don’t even believe in God in the first place.

    Anyway, I’m not responsible for the actions of Rick Santorum any more than you’re responsible for the atheist kids at Columbine. I love Nerdist so much, but the more religious talk that comes through here, I just get distant from it. There’s supposedly room for so many people in the Nerdist universe… but I’m starting to feel like the redheaded stepchild over here. I don’t like to get into “what about ME!” posts, but this was… hurtful. And not in the name of humor or video games. 🙁

  42. Scott says:

    Love the podcast but could you be a little more sensitive to your listeners who also happen to be religious? It’s incredibly frustrating and insulting to listen in on a conversation (that you can’t join in on) where you’re described as little more than a drooling neanderthal who desperately needs the easy approach to life.

    It’s especially funny to hear that the adoption of a faith or religious belief as taking the “easy way,” as doing so also burdens the believer with extra responsibilities that non-believers don’t have. Most of the religious people I know think it would be “so much easier” to live a life where God doesn’t factor in. It’s always strange to me when two groups on opposite sides of a conversation say the same thing about the other.

    Most Christians I know try to be respectful of others. We know there’s a lot of different ways to look at, and approach, life. Don’t let the idiots on the news make you think we’re all that way.

    Sorry. A bit rambly, I know. I just wanted to let you know I love what you guys are doing here, but the religious talk kind of stung.

  43. Ben Z says:

    I HAVE and play Skyrim, but you make me want to play it more! Stupid work keeps getting in the way of my Skyrim time.

  44. Spraynard Kruger says:

    An interesting cat. AND FUNNY! Great episode guys.

  45. TeriyakiUnknown says:

    Out of curiosity when will the live show be up?