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Episode 42: Thrilling Adventure Hour
Beyond Belief- “White…

Thrilling Adventure Hour, Now On Nerdist! Episode #42: Beyond Belief- “White Hunter, Drunk Heart”

Starring Paul F. Tompkins and Paget Brewster as those married mediums Frank and Sadie Doyle. Also starring Mark Gagliardi, Hal Lublin, Scott Aukerman, Patton Oswalt, Dana Gould, and Chris Hardwick. Recorded October 1, 2011.

A message from the creators:

Blacker: Hi, everyone! We are so excited to join Nerdist Industries! If you’re interested in why we made this decision, read this short essay we wrote to our current fans and subscribers (

Before we get into specifics about this week’s podcast, we should likely introduce you to the Thrilling Adventure Hour. The stage show plays monthly at Largo at the Coronet. We moved to Largo in March of 2010. Most of the podcasts come from those Largo shows. Before moving to Largo, we ran for five years at a 100-seat club here in Los Angeles. You likely won’t hear anything from those shows, as the room wasn’t really set up for optimum sound recording. The live show is about 75 minutes. Every show begins with an episode of our space western, Sparks Nevada, Marshal on Mars, and generally ends with Beyond Belief. The middle bit changes monthly.

The podcasts are culled from the live shows. So, the audience you hear is really there. If the actors flub, and it’s funny, we keep it in. We have a terrific engineer at Largo and a wonderful, patient podcast producer who makes everything sound great. We have a core cast of about 12-15 actors, some of whom have been with us from the very beginning. All of the music is live. If you live in LA, come see the live show. It’s a lot of fun.

We’ve also been lucky enough to get these amazing guest stars. Acker made our Wikipedia page (, which is pretty current and lists every guest star we’ve ever had in the nearly seven year run of the show.

The guest cast for this episode of Beyond Belief is a dream team of comics that Acker and I used to see perform at the old Largo on Fairfax, 12 years ago, on their Monday-night comedy shows. Besides the amazing Paul F. Tompkins — who has been a part of our cast from the very first show — we are thrilled to have as guests Patton Oswalt, Dana Gould, Scott Aukerman (who, as we were beginning to flirt with podcasting last year, gave us some invaluable help and suggestions), and the nerd-father, Chris Hardwick.

We’re offering an episode of Beyond Belief to you, Nerdist fans, as our first podcast through Nerdist Industries because, more than any other segment we feature in TAH, Beyond Belief is not-at-all reliant on continuity. We try to design every piece of show to be enjoyed on its own merits — if you haven’t been following Sparks Nevada since his first pod appearance (pod #2!), you’ll still have fun in his episodes. But your enjoyment of Sparks and his world will run deeper if you’re invested in his ongoing story.

Beyond Belief has no such strict continuity. There are characters that occasionally return, but you can go into any episode without knowing anything about their world. All you need to know is that PFT and Paget Brewster (Criminal Minds; Huff) play married mediums who love each other and booze and who tangle with the supernatural. We hope you have as much fun listening to the show as we do making it!

Acker: Hello and welcome to my commentary track! Just like regular, non-podcast commentary tracks, please enjoy the show first before reading this or it may not make any sense at all.

Some Stuff

I think I’ll use these commentary tracks to point out trivial things about the episode, give behind-the-scenes info and pat-on-the-backs for actors, but for this first one, I want to precede that by saying what a pleasure it is to write Beyond Belief. Paul F. Tompkins and Paget Brewster are dazzling. They are hilarious and their chemistry is joyful. As a writer, it is not just satisfying to see actors perform better than you imagined it, it is thrilling. And that’s what Paul and Paget do. Every single time.

Another Thing

This episode features with the song “Here’s To Us,” a collaboration with our composer Andy Paley. He is a mad genius who has a storied past that will surely make for an implausible movie someday. Someone should interview Andy Paley for an interview-type podcast. This is one of my favorite songs we’ve ever done. It just swings. Newcomers please note: it is not a theme song.


Not much trivia for this episode. The pantheon of African gods, their names, their respective godly fortes were all diligently researched. And by “researched,” I mean “made up.” Their names are all African names. I make no guarantees on the pronunciations of those names.

Back Pats

Oh, man, the actors are so great.

I love Paget’s performance of Sadie’s list of animals to shoot. Once we realized that Sadie pronounced the word “sure” with no “r” sound and two syllables, it became a challenge to find words that are suitably silly to throw at Paget just to hear how she’d say them.

I also love Scott Aukerman’s gleefully goofbally performance as Age, God of the Beasts. Blissfully dumb is my favorite kind of dumb.

I am a giant fan of the comedian guest stars in this episode. I enjoy them in this Beyond Belief and I have enjoyed them for years. You know the kind of commentary track where the behind-the-scenes people just gush over everyone in the film? Well, this is that part. Chris Hardwick, Dana Gould, Patton Oswalt — these guys are great. Some of the best guys working in comedy. Seek them out if you don’t know them. I love working with them.

Visual Elements

What doesn’t translate from staged performance to the radio show include the following: Paul and Paget wore Safari gear. When Age, God of the Beasts was shot, Scott lay on the stage until his resurrection.

Where Did This Episode Come From?

I’m glad you asked. In a post-rehearsal foolaround, Hal Lublin, Dave (Gruber) Allen and John DiMaggio riffed made up Ladysmith Black Mambazo at each other. It was so funny. I am not describing it funny, I am just telling you what happened. In the writing of it, Ladysmith Black Mambazo became more Lion Kingy, but their riff sent us looking for a story to tell in Africa.

Thank You!

Tommy Wiseau and Greg Sestero in THE DARK KNIGHT Interrogation Scene

Tommy Wiseau and Greg Sestero in THE DARK KNIGHT Interrogation Scene


Toto's "Africa" Gets a '50s-Style Cover from Postmodern Jukebox

See Joaquin Phoenix in Full JOKER Make-Up

See Joaquin Phoenix in Full JOKER Make-Up



  1. mface says:

    This was worse than I expected it to be. Tip: the point of an old time radio show is that no one needs to see the action.  I constantly felt like I was missing what was happening.  I’m sorry to be a troll; this just sucks.

  2. Geebsy says:

    I do not know what brush with wimsy had me click on TAH, but I have been gobbling up episodes like crazy. I am so happy Nerdist made these available. Thanks for the many laughs and cheers! *tink* –yes I am holding two glasses.

  3. Duey says:

    I am planning on quitting my job, moving to LA and volunteering to help out on every single upcoming TAH episode unitl the end of my days. I just need a couch to sleep on and the occasional “Good job, Kid”.

  4. devophill says:

    I was very confused when the Nerdist audio id popped up at the beginning of this episode, but this post has made things clear. Huzzah, I say!

  5. Gillian says:

    As a die-hard listener to both Nerdist & TAH, I’m supremely happy to see them join forces. Is this the beginning of a Podcasting Superalliance?!? Will Nerdist Industries soon rule over all things aural?

    I certainly hope so.

  6. Nick Collier says:

    Yes!! 🙂

    The Masters of the Modern Radio Drama – you guys need to load up some Jefferson Reid, Ace American 😀

  7. I have never heard of this but after listening to this episode, I love it! I’m glad Nerdist has expanded. We’ve got several quality shows to listen to now and it’s awesome! More Thrilling Adventure Hour!

  8. anon says:

    (PS: this was from searching iTunes via an iPhone)

  9. anon says:

    This podcast doesn’t show up in the list when you do a search on Nerdist Industries. Maybe it takes a while to process this stuff on iTunes, or maybe it’s an oversight. Figured it wouldn’t hurt to mention it just in case…

  10. Jb says:

    I’ve never heard of Thrilling Adventure Hour before this. This is amazing. I look forward to future listenings.

  11. Allie Goertz says:

    Very excited to see Thrilling Adventure Hour here. I can hear myself laugh after every joke.

  12. JE Smith says:

    Chris, you should get Paget Brewster on the Nerdist podcast – she is awesomeness personified.

  13. Jen K says:

    Hooray! This is awesome. I’ve been wanting to start listening to this for some time now, and it’s soooo much easier to listen to stuff over here on Nerdist. Bags you did!

    Also, Bonus! I thought I recognized Brian Stack as the announcer. That guy is fantastic.

  14. Andrea Shelton says:

    This is AMAZING!!!! My boyfriend and I are dressing up as Frank and Sadie Doyle for Halloween, that’s how much we love Beyond Belief. I simply could not be more *thrilled* about this news!!!

  15. Tim says:

    Looking forward to listening but the iTunes link doesn’t work; says it’s not available in the US store.

  16. Jennifer says:

    Yay! I love Thrilling Adventure Hour, but Beyond Belief most. Paget Brewster is hilarious and the more drunk-ass Sadie Doyle, the better!

  17. Old Doctor says:

    @Brian Tatosky – Is there teleportation that you have to pay for? Where can I find it and how much?

  18. Zach says:

    I, for one, welcome our new podcast network masters.

  19. Dean says:

    This sounds cool

  20. Louis says:

    Thanks Ben+Ben.

    This is perfect(the Soundcloud feed was very awkward)

  21. Justin says:

    Wowzers, I love being a witness to all the podcast history that has been unfolding over the past year. All the greats are slowly uniting to become the most powerful podcast alliance the world has even seen. You shall rule with a mighty, yet entertaining fist. May I be the first to pledge my allegiance to the oligopolies that entertain, keep me sane, and rescue me from the mundane on a daily basis.

  22. It’s such a joy to see Thrilling Adventure here.

    The WorkJuice Players are awesome to see perform each month, and everyone should see them and their amazing line up of guest stars in person. But until free teleportation is invented, at least there’s these podcasts to give you a taste of some people really having fun performing in front of a live audience of addicted fans.

    The crew made a good call by inviting them in, and the Nerdist empire just got a little bit more magnificent! 🙂