The Best Show on WFMU—quite possibly my favorite comedy radio show/podcast of all-time—will, like so many other things in this world, forever in my mind be tied to the world of comic bookery. I first heard the show on a trip to Chicago a few years ago (odd considering that I had to leave the greater New York metropolitan area to be exposed to a Jersey City-based radio show).
A Quimby’s employee was playing the podcast over the store PA, with host Tom Scharpling going off on an upcoming Brian Wilson project called Pleasure Island, which, thankfully, has yet to see the light of day. As fellow Beach Boys nerd, the thing was love at first listen—and I haven’t missed a single episode since.
Upon discovering that Scharpling himself is also something of a comics nerd, we asked if he might be interested in submitting himself to a quick interview for the site. Never shying away from a little self-promotion, he happily obliged.
In the past couple of years, I’ve discovered a massive amount of overlap amongst comics fans and FOTs (Friends of Tom). In retrospect, it’s not a huge surprise, really—good taste is good taste, right? Plenty of artists also include themselves in the FOT ranks—take Michael Kupperman, who has both appeared on the show and designed a Best Show t-shirt for a WFMU “Emergency Marathon.” Really, if you spend spend 12 hours a day alone in front of a drawing board, there’s a lot to be said for a weekly three-hour podcast.
I’ve covered the Best Show pledge drive for the past two years for The New York Press. Sadly, I won’t be at the station this year, so hopefully this post will suffice. And the comics tie-in certainly doesn’t hurt. As ever, Scharpling has put together an amazing giveaway for everyone who pledges above $75.
A seven-inch featuring Ben Gibbard, The Mountain Goats, Fucked Up, Ty Segall, and Ted Leo doing G.G. Allin covers is probably worth the price of admission alone, but toss-in a limited edition Best Show poster designed by Charles Burns (artwork not yet available, sadly–but it’s Charles Burns, so you know it will be great), and you’d be stupid not to pledge. Also, you’re supporting public radio, blah, blah, blah.
Scharpling’s show is tomorrow (Tuesday) 9 to midnight on WFMU. Pledge then for the aforementioned package. In the meantime, I’d love to get some Best Show loving indie comics fans to sound off below.