The Daily Rock Hatch: Tom Scharpling

Categories:  The Daily Rock Hatch


In which members of the entertainment community tearfully reveal their geeky comic obsessions, beneath their hardened irony-based exoskeleton.

A great man in our industry once famously proclaimed, “I’m the best there is at what I do, even though what I do isn’t very nice.” In a certain sense, those words can be applied to Tom Scharpling’s career. His public radio show, which boasts the understated title, ‘The Best Show on WFMU,’ is not a mere case of posturing or hyperbole—rather, it’s something of an honest, level-headed assessment of the facts. Even if it isn’t always all that nice.

The Best Show airs every Tuesday at 8PM EST on Jersey City’s WFMU (simulcast on the Web and later converted into handy podcast form for consumption at your own leisure). Over the course of three hours, Scharpling spins records and takes phone calls on an assortment of guests, both real and fake (the latter of which is nearly always performed by ex-Superchunk drummer, Jon Wurster).

I first discovered Scharpling’s show whilst browsing minis at Quimby’s in Chicago. The cashier was playing that week’s podcast over the loudspeaker, Scharpling well into a rant, discussing the merits of the forthcoming Brian Wilson concept record, Pleasure Island. The setting was rather fitting, as turns out. Scharpling, god help him, is big fan of sequential art, regularly reminding his listeners that he could be doing something better with his time, generally involving a large stack of comics.

We put Scharpling through the Daily Rock Hatch paces earlier this week. Check out his responses, after the jump.

Who are you?

My name is Tom Scharpling. I am the host of The Best Show On WFMU, a radio show on WFMU. You can hear the station at 91.1 FM in the NYC area, or anywhere on the planet at My show is on Tuesday nights from 8-11 PM EST. By day I am a writer and executive producer for the TV show, Monk.

You should totally be my Myspace friend because:

Because it is literally the least you can do. But I’m more juiced about Twitter right now anyway–I’m posting my legendary SCHARPLING’S TWITTER TITTERS daily, and I am going to be writing a novel on Twitter, three words at a time.

What are you reading [comic-wise, naturally]?

I just read three issues of Kick-Ass, which I am not sure what I think of. It might be really terrible. Is it? I have been enjoying Jeff Smith’s RASL, I liked Jenny Finn by Mike Mignola, the Brubaker Captain America, and I am re-re-re-reading Rob Schrab’s SCUD in its exciting complete collection The Whole Shebang. SCUD is my favorite comic book of all time and Rob Schrab is our Jim Henson!

Your favorite comic shop?

I like Jim Hanley’s on Staten Island and JC Comics in North Plainfield NJ.

This time next year, I hope to be penning the major motion picture adaptation of which comic:

I would give my left ear to do whatever it took to make SCUD into a movie. And I think that Allred’s X-Force would translate more to the silver screen than Watchmen will. Or how about a DR. Strange movie?

Assorted Tom Scharpling-related comic fun facts:

The most fun fact is that my goal is to write comics. It is something that I want more than anything. Every time I have tried to get something going or make some connections, I have been treated like a common street urchin. Do you people not know who I am?! Seriously. Someone hook me up here! I’ve got idears!


Tags: , , ,

One Comment to “The Daily Rock Hatch: Tom Scharpling”

  1. The Daily Cross Hatch » Charles Burns Designs Poster for The Best Show on WFMU