Smith & Waugh Talk About Satire
By Talk About Satire
An award winning* podcast in which Drs Adam J Smith and Jo Waugh talk about the form, function and future of satire. They also talk about the history of satire, but that doesn’t alliterate.
Adam and Jo are joined by a series of special guests who will also talk about satire.
* 'Best Pedagogical Project', The YSJSU Awards 2019
Adam and Jo are joined by a series of special guests who will also talk about satire.
* 'Best Pedagogical Project', The YSJSU Awards 2019
EP47. Harry & M3GAN: Truth, Todgers, Artificial Intelligence & [Spare] Satire
Satirists ricochet, take their aim, and fire away, fire away at Harry, Prince Andrew, MFA students and horror writers. This month, Adam and Jo discuss Spare and M3GAN, and discover a surprising amount of parallels with two other satirical novels: Garth Marenghi's "Terrortome" and Mona Awad's "Bunny". Truth, todgers, AI, and the creative process feature throughout the show. Also, what would the podcast sound like if it were scripted by ChatGPT? Host One and Host Two find out.
January 30, 2023
EP.46. Christmas Special: The Crown, I'm A Celeb, Elf(ish) Behavior & Satire.
Would you like to hear a (satirical) Christmas story? Then wrap yourselves up warm, settle down, and listen as Mama Satyre tells a heart-warming festive tale that has to be heard to be believed... That's right! It's that most magical time of year: time for the annual Smith & Waugh Christmas Special! Join us for the story of Snarky, the human boy inexplicably raised as a Satyre (a male nature spirit with ears and tail resembling those of a horse and a permanent, exaggerated erection), a thorough investigation into whether or not The Crown and I'm A Celebrity are in any way satirical and our host's recommendations of two books to buy that satirical person in your life this Christmas: Christopher Wilson's Hurdy Gurdy and Rutu Modan's Tunnels. Merry Christmas to all and to all: Sit Up, Shut Up and Eat Our Satire! Ho ho ho.
December 13, 2022
EP.45. Satire & The Brontës
Forty-five episodes into the podcast, the focus finally turns to Jo’s specialist trivia subject: the life, work and legend of the Brontë sisters. Best known for their novels, poetry, their tragic and untimely deaths and for inspiring a song by Kate Bush, Jo reveals that the Brontës also have a fascinating (and entertaining!) relationship with satire. Charlotte, for instance, bitingly satirised her brother Branwell in her infamous juvenilia. The sisters and the biographical myths they inspired also been the targets, some of which are surveyed here. Adam and Jo also discuss the recent film Emily (not actually a satire, though you’d be forgiven for thinking it might) and Jo shares her vision for a new instalment in the Real Housewives franchise.
November 21, 2022
EP44. Satire & Irony on TikTok (with Leigh Stein)
Jo and Adam take on the big questions: what is TikTok? What is irony? Is rain on your wedding day more ironic than ten thousand spoons when all you need is a knife, or not as ironic as that? Once this is sorted, they chat to novelist, poet, and regular SAWTAS guest, Leigh Stein, about her recent adventures on TikTok and her observations about the way its users respond to irony and satire (or don't). We chat about Colleen Hoover, Flowers in the Attic, and Leigh's forthcoming novel. Then Adam and Jo finally deliver their long-awaited Big Summer Satirical Read Round-Up, where they evaluate Julia May Jonas's Vladimir, John Boyne's The Echo Chamber, and Jean Hanff Korelitz's The Plot. Isn't it satiric - don't you think?
October 10, 2022
EP43. Satire & The First Days of Liz Truss
From the moment Joe Lycett appeared on Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg on 4 Sept and (ironically) offered the incoming Prime Minister a ringing endorsement, a veritable Tsunami of satire was unleashed across the UK. Wave after wave of satire swept through the internet. From the bin bag stuck on a the podium outside 10 Downing Street, to the This Morning Energy Bills themed Wheel of Fortune, to Chris Pine’s disassociating face — suddenly everything was a once in a generation meme making opportunity. Jo and Adam are here to pick through it all in what was very nearly their most topical episode ever. [This episode was recorded on 8 Sept 2022].
September 09, 2022
EP42. Comedy, Controversy & Cancelling
This was going to be the Smith & Waugh Satirical Summer Reading Challenge episode, but after the summer news cycle was flooded with comedy headlines – almost all in someway dealing with controversy or cancellation – Jo and Adam have put their satirical fun in the sun on hold to think about one of the biggest questions in contemporary comedy: is it funny to say the unsayable? And, more to the point, is it satire? Together, Adam and Jo try to salvage some meaning from a series of fascinating events: Mock the Week is terminated, Jerry Sadowitz is cancelled [from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival], Frankie Boyle is triumphant [despite joking about sexual violence] and South Park celebrates 25 years on the air. Also featuring quick visits to Adam’s “18th-century Observation Corner” and Jo’s brand new “Gen Z Corner”.
August 22, 2022
EP41. Satire, Public Emotions and The Clownfall of Boris Johnson
After a thoroughly uneventful week in British politics Jo and Adam struggle to think of any topical satire that they can meaningfully talk about... NOT! In the immediate wake of the "Pincher Affair" and the revelation that he met - unaccompanied - with a former KGB agent during his time as Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson is hit with a world beating volume of government resignations: over 50 in less than 48 hours. What a lot of churn! Surrounded by speakers blasting the Benny Hill theme into 10 Downing Street, Boris Johnson finally decides to call it a day... or does he? He appears at the podium and delivers a bombastic self congratulatory speech which sounds a little like a resignation, but then returns to duty, later revealing that he will remain in place for the time being as a "care-taker" PM. Seconds later, Rishi Sunak, who had been among the very first to resign mere days before, publishes his campaign video to be the next leader of the Conservative party. Suffice it to say, there was plenty to chew on for amateur and professional satirists alike, as an unprecedented wave of surreal, incredulous and downright farcical gifs, memes, tweets and sketches subsumed the internet. In this episode, Adam and Jo pick through and discuss some of the satirical highs and lows of this weird week in politics, before calling upon the expertise of Professor Robert Phiddian, author of Satire and the Public Emotions (CUP) to try to understand what all of this might tell us about satire's relationship to what neuroscience names the CAD Triad of Emotions: Contempt, Anger and Disgust. And finally, they also launch the Smith & Waugh Satirical Summer Reading Challenge.
July 15, 2022
EP40. Royal Satire: Platinum Jubilee Satire Review Special
Did you have a good street party this weekend? Did you get tangled up in bunting? Did you wrestle with a gazebo? Did your neighbor try to start a conga? Did you encounter a Platinum Pudding Maker? No, neither did Adam and Jo. As the nation is strongly encouraged to partake in a frenzy of patriotic worship and monarchical affirmation, Jo and Adam consider the long tradition in British Royal Satire (dating back, of course, to the eighteenth century) before picking out a couple of key satirical moments from the jubilee celebrations (and their immediate aftermath).
June 08, 2022
EP39. Satirical Hoaxing in the Time of QAnon: TikTok, Trolling & the Culture Wars
Jo and "Adam" bring listeners up to speed on some shocking backstage drama in the land of Smith & Waugh before taking a deep dive into the weird world of satirical hoaxing. On a quest to clarify the difference between a regular hoax and a satirical hoax, your intrepid hosts gloss the history of literary hoaxes before examining a series of mind-bending modern examples of the form. Did a stand-up comedian called Liam Evans really advocate for "problematic" comedians to be prosecuted using hate crime laws? Did Gwyneth Paltrow really try to sell a diamond-encrusted disposable "diaper" for $200? Are second grade teachers in Austin Texas really teaching young students about the "Furries" as part of a week celebrating sub-culture? Did an activist really believe he could bring peace to the Berkley Protests by giving away free cans of Pepsi Cola? And is there really a movement in America dedicated to proving that all birds have been replaced by deep state surveillance robots? Adam and Jo also welcome onto the show their new unpaid intern, Human Geographer and Music-Maker, Dr Benjamin Garlick.
May 30, 2022
EP38. Satire, Rage & Originality (with Sam Riviere)
Jo and Adam are joined by poet, author and academic Sam Riviere for a wide ranging conversation about satire, originality, plagiarism, the inherent challenges of existing in a world where performance and genuine participation have become indistinguishable and, well, just about all of the problems with everything really... In addition to being a celebrated, award-winning author, Sam is also often described as writing satire "fueled by genuine rage." Adam and Jo talk about the long-standing relationship between satire and rage (or at the very least, the performance of rage) before asking Sam if he feels like "genuine rage" is really the engine of his own satire, with particular reference to his recent debut novel Dead Souls. Dead Souls appears, on the surface, to satirize the contemporary poetry/small art publishing scene but, as the novel progresses its satirical impulses spiral outwards to skewer almost everything about life in later-stage capitalism including but not limited to: the culture sector, higher education and social media. Elsewhere in the episode Jo and Adam offer the internet's very last take on Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars (is it a useful analogy for how satire works???) and reflect on their recent experience of interviewing the viral internet comedian and animator Alistair Beckett King.
April 28, 2022
EP37. WW3 & IWD: Satire, Women & War (International Women's Day 2022)
As Russia invades Ukraine, Jo and Adam ponder the most pressing question: what does the first European conflict in decades will mean for satire? They also reflect on the unlikely backstory of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy who, in the ultimate case of satire imitating life, fronted a satirical sitcom in which he played a man who surprisingly became the Ukrainian President in the years immediately before he surprisingly became Ukrainian President. Then they discuss a recent Guardian AMA with (close personal friend of the podcast?) Armando Iannucci. And then, at last, after talking about all those topical men, they finally mark IWD22 by forging visibility for women by celebrating the achievements of two satirical women: Eliza Haywood (and her periodical The Parrot) and Dorothy Parker.
March 07, 2022
EP36. Satire & The Law: Libel, Censorship & Freedom of Speech
Happy Anniversary to SAWTAS! It’s been three years to the day since Adam and Jo first took to the airwaves. In this episode, they reflect on their tremendous and unlooked-for success, and take a moment to consider whether it’s possible to talk about satire without being pretentious (spoiler: yes). Once that’s established, they talk to special guest Dr Andrew Bricker from Ghent University about satire, libel, and the law, and the ways that all of those things were connected in our very favourite century, the eighteenth one. We explore how the law responded to satirists, and how satirical work shaped libel laws in that period, and consider the legacies of that relationship today. Along the way, we hear about a fascinating addendum to the Jonathan Swift/Lady Mary Montagu dressing-room-based scrap, talk about cancellations, comedy, and a little bit of Brontë business too. From twenty-first century pseuds (not us, we’re talking about Private Eye) to eighteenth-century feuds - it’s our anniversary and we’ll talk about satire if we want to. Andrew, author of Libel and Lampoon: Satire in the Courts 1670-1792 (Oxford University Press, 2022), will also be joining us at the York Literature Festival in March.
February 14, 2022
EP35. Satire, "Party-Gate" & The End Of The World
As the fabric of the social contract in Britain further disintegrates in the wake of increasingly outrageous revelations about behaviour behind closed doors at 10 Downing Street during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, Jo and Adam talk about the one divisive topic that's really gotten everyone really raging in this cold, miserable month of January: Adam McKay's Netflix original movie Don't Look Up! Is it too smug? Is it too simple? Is it too self-satisfied? Is it too satirical, or not satirical enough? These are the questions that polarised everyone over the holidays, and they're the questions Adam and Jo are wading into in this episode, which takes as its theme the end of the f*cking world. They also talk about Ben Elton's 1989 satirical novel Stark, which tackles very similar ground to McKay's film only with "total toxic overload" as the catastrophic and unstoppable threat to human civilisation rather than a huge flaming meteor that everyone can literally see coming. And, of course, they'll also reflect on satirical responses to Party-Gate. They just hope the PM can hang on long enough for this episode to come out and still be relevant...
January 20, 2022
EP34. Smith & Waugh’s Big Satirical Christmas “Gathering”
Christmas isn’t Christmas until everyone is dead of a new mutant variant! Only kidding. Christmas isn’t really Christmas until Jo and Adam have dropped their self-indulgent Christmas episode, and this year they’ve pulled out all of the stops and thrown a big illegal party in 10 Downing Street during a national lockdown and the police are refusing to investigate. Only kidding. It isn’t a party, it’s a gathering. It’s cheese and wine. Ok, it’s not really any of those, it’s a podcast, but as you can imagine the question of whether a party quacks like a duck, and whether that duck can be satirised, is occupying a lot of Adam and Jo’s headspace this Christmas. But never mind that now. All you need to know is Jo and Adam are here with some Christmas consumer advice on what to get the satire fan in your satirical fam: Armando Iannucci’s mock-epic satire on COVID-times, Pandemonium, and Sam Riviere’s multi-layered satire on the creative arts, Dead Souls. Merry Satirical Christmas, one and all.
December 20, 2021
EP33. (Bonus!) Satire, Kidneys & The Bad Art Friend
In a special bonus episode Adam and Jo are joined once again by novelist and culture writer Kat Rosenfield for a deep dive into one of the strangest literary scandals of recent years, and that is the scandal of the Bad Art Friend Scandal. If you haven’t heard about this yet, fear not, because Jo, Adam and Kat explain all before returning to the short story at the heart of this scandal, Sonya Larson’s The Kindest, and ask: could it be satire?
November 17, 2021
EP32. Satire, Murder & Young Adult Fiction (with Kat Rosenfield)
Jo and Adam are joined by culture writer, podcaster and novelist Kat Rosenfield to discuss the challenges faced by the satirist in 2021, the state of satire in young adult fiction and Kat’s brand new novel No One Will Miss Her, which The Washington Post has described as “amusingly satirical and darkly bloody.” Kat has reported for MTV News and her work has appeared in such outlets as Wired, Vulture, Entertainment Weekly, Unherd, Playboy, The Spectator (USA) and Reason. She’s the author of many novels, including Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone (2012) and Inland (2014), she collaborated with Stan Lee on The Alliances and she is co-host of the hit podcast Feminine Chaos.
November 15, 2021
EP31. Satire (Legit Reboothed): Bo Burnham, Chris Morris & the Limits of Satire
In this momentous episode, Jo and Adam finally return to their trusty recording booth for the first episode to be recorded in-person and on-location since March 2020. Once back in the booth Adam and Jo mark the anniversary of Chris Morris's Brass Eye Special, "Paedogeddon!", which remains one of the twenty-first-century's most polarizing and controversial works of satire twenty years later. They're joined by Dr Robert Edgar, Senior Lecturer in Film and Media and fellow member of the York Research Unit for the Study of Satire (YRUSOS), who helps them determine whether or not Morris is a classic satirist in the Juvenallian tradition of Jonathan Swift and Alexander Pope or indeed, as he was branded by the tabloid press at the time, some kind of demented "media terrorist." Jo and Adam also revisit their discussion of Bo Burnham's Inside from the last episode and add a few further, qualifying reflections. This is satire, reboothed.
October 04, 2021
EP.30. Satire & Moral Purity: Cancelling, Karens & Covid-19 (with Leigh Stein)
In the second half of Adam and Jo's wide-ranging conversation with poet/novelist/journalist/satirist Leigh Stein, they turn their attention to the target's of satire in Leigh's latest collection: What To Miss When? (Penguin, 2021). Did the "cancel culture" phenomenon intensify during the pandemic because a lot of people were locked down with nothing to do but manufacture outrage and demand moral purity? Is there a difference between a Karen and a B*tch? And was there more to our intense but fleeting obsession with Tiger King than met the eye? Jo and Adam also take a look at Bo Burnham's Netflix musical special, Inside, and wonder whether or not they've missed something crucial... Check out the episode show-notes.
August 17, 2021
EP.29. Satire, Poetry & the Global Pandemic (with Leigh Stein)
Jo and Adam are joined by returning guest, poet/novelist/journalist/satirist Leigh Stein for a discussion of her new collection of satire-inflected pandemic poetry, What To Miss When (Penguin, 2021). In a wide-range discussion, Adam and Jo also talk about: the power and purpose of poetry and its potential as an effective medium for satire; the challenges that confront anyone hoping to represent the first year of Covid-19; and what kind of satirical poem they themselves would write if ever they were required to do so. Tune in again tomorrow for part two of this interview with Leigh, in which everyone talks about cancellation, Karens and Bo Burnham. Read the shownotes.
August 16, 2021
EP.28. Satire & Horrible People
Popular Edgelords Jo Waugh and Adam Smithare joined by Nicole Graham to talk about the popular card game 'Cards Against Humanity.' The game's own promotional materials claim that is it intended as a work of satire, but is it really? Nicole discusses her recent book chapter 'Laughing with Horrible People: Reaffirming Ethical Boundaries Through Laughter' in which she applies an eighteenth-century framework for understanding humour to the famously offensive card game to determine how it works and who is culpable for the cards played during a game should they cause upset or offense. Jo and Adam also talk about their own relationship with board games, CAH's imminent cancellation and what happened when the government decided to use a very familiar font when sending out their important announcement about Coronavirus.
July 30, 2021
EP.27. Satire & the Between Times: Borat, Alan Partridge & "Juvenile" Satire at The Foundling Museum
As the temperature finally rises, but so too do infection rates, Adam and Jo take an episode to reflect on satire released during the between times: that is, the time between lockdown and the often-promised full easing of restrictions. These include: the second season of This Time with Alan Partridge, Borat’s American Lockdown and Borat Debunked and a recent exhibition of juvenile satire on display at the Foundling Museum. Along the way Jo and Adam also think about “cancel culture”, whether it exists and what its relationship might be to comedy and satire. Read the full show-notes here.
June 24, 2021
EP.26. Satire, Comedy & Mental Health
Do you ever wonder... what's the point? Liars and cheats prosper and gain power, the hypocritical, the criminal, the venal, the self-interested, the arrogant and the cruel seem to get away with whatever they want. Statistics and figures are cynically manipulated for cynical ends. The average person has no voice and no power, no real chance to change anything or be heard. Everything gets worse and worse, we’re all afraid, nothing really seems stable, and nobody with power can be trusted. Well, satire can help! Adam and Jo are joined by Dr Dieter Declercq, author of Satire, Comedy and Mental Health: Coping with the Limits of Critique, to talk about the extent to which satire can help sustain good mental health in a trouble socio-political world. We mention: 1984 A Bit of Fry and Laurie A Modest Proposal Alexander Pope Animal Farm Balms Bernard Williams Bon Jovi Boris Johnson Brass Eye Brexit anxiety Catharsis Climate change and climate grief Covid Depression Dominic Cummings Dustin Griffin Hello Tushie Bidets Horace John Dryden John Wright Jonathan Swift Juvenal Medical models of satire Michael Gove Mock the Week Nietzsche Political burnout Rain Rishi Sunak Satire and magic Satirical poetry The Handmaid’s Tale Theme tunes (US sitcoms) Trump blimp Read the full show-notes.
May 28, 2021
EP.25. Satire: Left Wing & Right Wing
Is satire fundamentally left wing or right wing? Does the BBC now have a right wing agenda? Can right wing comedy actually be funny? And was all this really the reason The Mash Report got cancelled? Jo and Adam talk about all of this and more (including their own shocking Political Compass Results!!!) in this all new episode, also featuring a chat with recovering stand-up comic and scholar of comedy, Seb Bloomfield. Read the full show-notes.
April 30, 2021
EP.24. Satire On International Women's Day
Jo and Adam #ChooseToChallenge this International Women’s Day by seeking out and celebrating some of their favourite female satirists from literary history: Mary Leopor and Stella Gibbons. Especially devoted listeners may also choose to stick around after the closing music for an extra treat. Read the full show-notes.
March 08, 2021
EP.23. How To Live Well The Satirical Way (with Oli Grant)
Stop talking about Valentine’s Day and start talking about Smith & Waugh Talk About Satire Day! That’s right, this episode marks exactly two years since the first episode dropped on 14 February 2019. For this very special anniversary episode Jo and Adam are joined by author Oli Grant to discuss his book How To Live Well The North Korean Way, a satire on the nature of self-help books and their efforts to selectively appropriate, repackage and commodify aspects of other cultures. They also ask whether or not Jo has any authority here or if Adam has read the script and understood it. Read the full show-notes.
February 14, 2021
EP.22. Satire: Social Media, Identity Politics and Woke Ideology Part 2 (with Andrew Doyle)
In the second part of this wide-ranging interview with satirist, comedian and cultural commentator Andrew Doyle , conversation turns to touch on cancel culture and the culture wars as Andrew explains what is at stake in his satirical project. Jo and Adam also take time to reflect on Charlie Brooker’s latest production, the Netflix mocumentary Death to 2020, and Jo reveals her clever idea for a new kind of national service.
February 02, 2021
EP.21. Satire: Social Media, Identity Politics and Woke Ideology Part 1 (with Andrew Doyle)
18 months after he first appeared on the podcast (Episode 8. Satire: Woke Politics and Political Tribalism), Jo and Adam welcome satirist, comedian, writer and cultural commentator Andrew Doyle to discuss life as the man behind Titania McGrath during 2020, and to discuss Titania’s latest book: My First Little Book Of Intersectional Activism. Access the full show-notes here.
February 01, 2021
EP.20 - Christmas Consumer Advice Special
Sometimes, a phrase pops into your head that seems too good not to use, even though sometimes it was plenty weak enough to leave alone. So it is in this episode of the 9th best satire podcast with ‘Karen and Gammon Talk About Salmon’, Adam and Jo find out as they labour the joke to be sure it won’t work. They then talk about satirical books at Christmas time, Christmas itself, and some of the adverts that have happened this year. Read the full show-notes.
December 16, 2020
EP.19 - Have We Got Satirical News For You
Poor Unfortunate Adam is trapped in his flat with only his memories for company, having been outed as the Saboteur in CBBC’s Trapped – or possibly just been near too many phones. Jo has decorated her study with subversive prints and a Jane Area, but has now run out of things to do as lockdown looms: what to do? The only way out of their own Infernos is to chat about some recent satire, including Spitting Image and some good stuff as well. There’s been plenty emerging recently, so it’s time for Adam and Jo to take centre stage as the main event, and talk about it. They also muse on the inconsistencies of Serco’s Track and Trace app, their respective failures to impress Cambridge Admissions Tutors, and the impossibility of telling whether someone is a ghost or not when you can’t touch people any more. Join us in our personal Bly Manors. It’s our podcast! Read the full shownotes here.
November 10, 2020
EP.18 - Satire, Social Media & Identity Politics (with Leigh Stein)
Jo and Adam are joined once again by novelist Leigh Stein for the second half of an interview about Self-Care, Leigh’s new satire on the wellness industry. This time, they talk about offence, cancel culture, privilege, the presentation of victimhood on social media, and Leigh’s approach to navigating (and skewering) all of these factors and more. Adam and Jo also talk about ‘Lockdown Sceptics’ and the bizarre dating site: Love in a Covid Climate. Read the full show-notes here.
October 13, 2020
EP.17 - Satire, Wellness & Woke Capitalism (with Leigh Stein)
Jo and Adam are joined by Leigh Stein, author of the new satirical novel Self Care, to talk about the wellness industry, women, forms of feminism (or things that look like feminism), social media, soundbites, and the relationships between wellness, wokeness, and capitalism. So, give yourself permission to listen to our intuition. Read the full shownotes here.
September 17, 2020
EP.16. Satire, Social Justice & Offence (with Dr Sharon Lockyer)
In this long awaited and highly anticipated episode, Adam and Jo discuss comedy, humour, offence, a fence, and much more, with very special guest Dr Sharon Lockyer. Is social justice a legitimate target for satire, or can comedy promote its causes? When it comes to crossing the line, how far is too far? Should Fawlty Towers be cancelled? Was Little Britain ever funny? Is it satire to imply Sir Keir Starmer has a lot of underpants? View the full show-notes here.
August 04, 2020
EP.15 - The Bonus Mail Bag Episode
After pestering listeners to give them a yell for the past 18 months, Jo and Adam finally take a minute (or rather 63) to respond to all of the comments, questions and queries that have either landed in their satirical inbox (firstname.lastname@example.org) or hit them up in socials. Some are real, some are fictional, but each inspires a compelling, controversial or comedic discussion of the form, function, history and future of satire. And, since this is a bonus episode, Adam and Jo also take this opportunity to homage two of their own favourite podcasts. Check out the show-notes here.
July 22, 2020
EP.14 - Satire in Lockdown 2: Staying Alert
As unprecedented times become the new normal, Jo and Adam return for another unprecedented episode which follows the precedent set by the last unprecedented episode they released in May. That's right, it's time for another Satire in Lockdown Round-Up! With the government's new and confusing message proving almost as viral as the virus, the PM's chief advisor flagrantly breaking the rules he helped to write and everyone else communicating almost exclusively through Zoom, there's been plenty of fodder for the satirists. Check out the show-notes to see a full list of everything talked about in this episode.
June 15, 2020
EP.13 - Satire in Lockdown
In an unprecedented episode for unprecedented times, Jo & Adam "meet" in Zoom to reflect on the role of satire in the Age of Covid-19. From Animal Crossing to 'gramming endless loaves of sourdough, from PE with Joe Wicks to Yoga with Adrienne, the world has changed an awful lot since episode 2.6 was released just 6 weeks ago. One thing that hasn't changed, though, is satire, and the way it placates the people in times of tremendous distress. Join us for a run down of the refuge and assistance satire and comedy have provided the people in recent weeks. Stay safe, remain indoors. Visit our website for shownotes. Find us on Twitter @SatireNoMore
May 01, 2020
EP.12 - Satire, Context & Curation
In episode 6 of season 2, Jo and Adam talk to Dr Sarah Burnage, curator of Fairfax House, about the peculiar challenge of presenting historical satire to contemporary audiences. Is satire more dependant on context than other literary forms, comedic or otherwise? What happens when satire is severed from its moment of production? When does satire becomes propaganda or misinformation? Sarah talks about her longstanding interest in eighteenth-century art history, and how she came to forge a career in the heritage industry. She also shares her experience curating an exhibition all about the savage satire of James Gillray in the summer of 2019. Full a full list of everything Adam, Jo and Sarah talk about, check out our show-notes.
March 27, 2020
TRAILER: EP.12 - Satire, Context & Curation
In episode 6 of season 2, Jo and Adam talk to Dr Sarah Burnage, curator of Fairfax House, about the peculiar challenge of presenting historical satire to contemporary audiences. Is satire more dependant on context than other literary forms, comedic or otherwise? What happens when satire is severed from its moment of production? When does satire becomes propaganda or misinformation? Sarah talks about her longstanding interest in eighteenth-century art history, and how she came to forge a career in the heritage industry. She also shares her experience curating an exhibition all about the savage satire of James Gillray in the summer of 2019. Visit our website to view the full show-notes.
March 22, 2020
EP. 11 - Satire, Women & Elitism (with Janey Godley)
In episode 5 of season 2, Adam and Jo talk to comedian Janey Godley, about satire, swearing, and elitism. Janey hit the headlines in 2016 when she held a sign stating that “Trump is a C*nt” during Donald Trump’s visit to the Turnberry Golf Resort, but she’s also been a successful stand-up comedian for over 20 years, as well as a regular on Have I Got News for You and Radio 4’s Just A Minute and the maker of comedy voice-over clips which she posts on Twitter. So – can anyone do satire? Well, one of the three of us in this episode definitely can: the other two try their best. Visit our blog for the full show-notes.
February 14, 2020
TRAILER: Ep.11 - Satire, Women & Elitism
Many of our guests have talked about the need for satire to 'punch up', but do you already need to be quite far up to punch with satire? Why are so many figures associated with satire and its illustrious history not only men, but privately educated ones? Jo and Adam speak to comedian Janey Godley about her booming career as a female comedian from Glasgow and the role social media has played in her success.
February 06, 2020
Ep.10 - 2019: A Year In Satire
In the first episode of 2020, Jo and Adam pick out the biggest moments of satire from the past 12 months. This was the year that saw Alan Partridge return to the small screen, Chris Morris return to the big screen and Stewart Lee return to the stage. In the news, it also gave us #Hairgate, Fact Check UK and a Brexit that was always just around the corner. For full episode details, visit our blog.
January 23, 2020
EP.9 - It's a Satirical Life: Satire & Christmas (with Creepjoint's Matthew Colbeck)
In their very first Christmas episode, Jo and Adam take a break from asking whether satire is dead, and imagine what it might have been like if it had never been born at all. No expense has been spared on members of the cast, as they take a rollercoaster ride through a very partial history of satire. They then discuss the satirical possibilities of Christmas itself, and are joined by Dr Matt Colbeck of the virtuoso Math Rock band, Creepjoint to ponder this. View the full show-notes here.
December 19, 2019
TRAILER: EP.9 - It's a Satirical Life: Satire & Christmas (with Creepjoint's Matthew Colbeck)
In their very first Christmas episode, Jo and Adam take a break from asking whether satire is dead, and imagine what it might have been like if it had never been born at all. No expense has been spared on members of the cast, as they take a rollercoaster ride through a very partial history of satire. They then discuss the satirical possibilities of Christmas itself, and are joined by Matt Colbeck of the Stoke-based Math Rock Virtuoso Guiar trio Creepjoint to ponder this. Listen to the full episode on Thursday 19 December 2020.
December 12, 2019
EP.8 - Satire: Woke Politics & Political Tribalism
In episode 1 of season 2, anonymous Twitter account DM Reporter commented that you can't be a satirist if you write for the Daily Mail. In this episode Adam and Jo talk to Andrew Doyle about that argument, and about Andrew's own satirical Twitter account, "Titania McGrath." Who are his targets, and how does he hope to change their minds? Is there any hope for the future? And exactly what was wrong with Frankie Boyle's "joke" about Katie Price and her son? Listen to the trailer! Listen to the episode! In this episode Adam, Jo, and Andrew talk about: Aaron Banks Alexander Pope Boris Johnson Codes of Conduct Countryfile Cultural Appropriation Daily Express Daily Mail/ Scottish Daily Mail DM Reporter Dear Joan and Jericha The Eighteenth Century Feminism Frank Skinner Frankie Boyle Georges I, II, III, and IV Gender Pay Gap Grammarly Greta Thunberg The Hanoverian Period Horrible Histories Identity Politics Impact Agenda It's A Wonderful Life Jonathan Pie Jordan (Katie Price) Joseph Addison Just Eat Laurie Penny Mail on Sunday Mail Online Martin Luther King My Dad Wrote A Porno No-Platforming The One Show Owen Jones Pepsi Podcast Sponsorship Political Tribalism Richard Steele Rosamund Irwin Safe Spaces The Scourge Shropshire Farm Foods Snowflakes Sodexxo Square Space Titania McGrath Tories Twitter Virginia Blackburn W.H. Auden Whigs and Whig Ministries Woke (Andrew Doyle writing as Titania McGrath) Wokeness and Woke People World War II (bomb shelters and dogfights) Zip Recruiter
November 14, 2019
TRAILER: EP.8 - Satire: Woke Politics & Political Tribalism (with Andrew Doyle)
When people are deciding who is or isn't a satirist, how much of that decision do they base on the actual content being produced and how much on perceived political or intellectual bias? How do you satirise a target who believes themselves to be virtuous? And does Adam Smith really think everyone is a massive snowflake? Find out on the 14 November, when Adam and Jo will be joined by comedian and satirist, Andrew Doyle (close friend of Titania McGrath).
November 07, 2019
EP.7 - Confessions of The Daily Mail Reporter
In the first episode of their second season, Smith and Waugh talk to the anonymous author of long-running Twitter parody @DMReporter. In this episode Adam and Jo (and @DMReporter) talk about: Alan Partridge Andrew Doyle Boris Johnson Brexit Carrier bags The Daily Mail Deliveroo Emma Thompson Extinction Rebellion Fox News George Orwell Guido Fawkes Have I Got News For You James Bond John O'Farrell, Things Can Only Get Worse? Jonathan Swift Krishnan Guru-Murthy Liz Jones Mail on Sunday Meghan, Duchess of Sussex Nazism Paul Dacre Piers Morgan Robert Webb Ron Perlman Sadiq Khan Spitting Image Titania McGrath Twitter Weekending York Research Unit for the Study of Satire
October 17, 2019
PREVIEW: Smith & Waugh Talk About Satire Season 2
Adam and Jo talk about their plans for season 2, who their guests will be and why it will be slightly different talking to practitioners than to scholars. This episode may or may not have been sponsored by Shropshire Farm Foods.* *It wasn't.
October 16, 2019
TRAILER. Smith & Waugh Talk about Satire Season 2
The new season drops on 24th October, featuring interviews with Andrew Doyle (Spiked journalist, comedian and creator of Titania McGrath), Janey Godley (comedian and person who approached Donald Trump with a sign saying "Trump is a C**t"), the anonymous host of popular satirical Twitter account @DMReporter and many more...
October 15, 2019
Is this secretly a podcast about the 18th century..?
With Season 1 wrapped, Jo wants to ask a question: Was this secretly a podcast about the eighteenth century all along? And if not, why are so many of our guests all of to the International Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies International Congress on the Enlightenment...?
September 04, 2019
EP.6 - Satire & Women
Has satire ever really been a “man’s game”? Does satire work differently when written by women? Or when women are the targets? How is sexuality treated by satire? Adam and Jo are joined by Professor Karen Harvey (University of Birmingham) to talk about satire, sex and gender. In this episode Jo & Adam & Karen talk about: Alexander Pope (The Dunciad, “Essay on Man,” “The Discovery”) Anne Radcliffe Aphra Behn “Eminent Ladies” Esther Lewis (“A Mirror to Detractors”) Frankie Boyle George I George III (and pooing in field) Jonathan Swift (“The Lady’s Dressing Room,” “A Beautiful Young Nymph Goes To Bed”) John Dryden Joseph Banks Mary Astell Mary Collier (“The Woman’s Labour”) Mary Leapor (“Essay on Woman”) Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (“The Reasons that Induced Dr. S. to Write a Poem Call’d the Lady’s Dressing Room”) Mary Toft Michelle Wolf The Norton Anthology of English Literature Stephen Duck (“The Thresher’s Labour”) Stewart Lee Student Evaluations Viv Groskop SMITH & WAUGH WILL RETURN...
September 02, 2019
TRAILER: EP.6 - Satire & Women
Has satire ever really been a “man’s game”? Does satire work differently when written by women? Or when women are the targets? How is sexuality treated by satire? Adam and Jo are joined by Professor Karen Harvey (University of Birmingham) to talk about satire, sex and gender. Episode available: Monday 2 September
August 28, 2019
EP.5 - Satire & Laughter
Should satire make us laugh? Is satire always funny? Why do we laugh at things anyway? Adam and Jo are joined by Dr Kate Davison (University of Sheffield) to talk about the social history of laughter, and the various satires of the eighteenth-century tavern keeper Ned Ward. In this episode Jo and Adam and Kate talk about: Adam’s Funny Game Adam Smith (from the eighteenth century) Appropriate/Inappropriate laughter Brexit Charles Dickens Disapprobation Disease Doctor, Doctor Jokes Edward (Ned) Ward Francisco Garcia Francis Hutchinson Friday Night Dinner Graphic satire from the eighteenth century Grub street John Dryden Incongruity (theory of laughter) Laughter Laughter as entertainment Laughing with/Laughing at Long eighteenth century Memes Print culture Puns Nish Kumar Social communication Stewart Lee Superiority (theory of laughter) Thomas Hobbes Vice (dir. by Adam McKay) 2EN606: Sick Novels (York St John University, Literature module) The Index of Laughter used in ‘Adam’s Funny Game’: No reaction Sympathetic smile Polite titter Genuine titter Gaffuw Sustained laughing out loud Roll on the floor laughing Laughing in your mind but no physical laughter Your smiling for no reason because you’re working hard to suppress a laugh Uncontrollable and inappropriate laughter you are unable to sustain Join Adam and Jo again for their big finale: Has satire ever really been a “man’s game”? Does satire work differently when written by women? Or when women are the targets? How is sexuality treated by satire? Adam and Jo are joined by Professor Karen Harvey (University of Birmingham) to talk about satire, sex and gender.
August 26, 2019
TRAILER: EP.5 - Satire & Laughter
Should satire make us laugh? Is satire always funny? Why do we laugh at things anyway? Adam and Jo are joined by Dr Kate Davison (University of Sheffield) to talk about the social history of laughter, and the various satires of the eighteenth-century tavern keeper Ned Ward. Episode Available Monday 26 August!
August 21, 2019
EP.4 - Satire & the Visual Image
Do you need words to do satire? If a picture can say a thousand words, how much satire can it do? Adam and Jo are joined by Wendy McGlashan (University of Aberdeen) to talk about eighteenth-century print-maker, miniaturist and satire merchant, John Kay. In this episode Adam and Jo and Wendy talk about: Adam McKay Beavis and Butthead Boris Johnson Charlie Hebdo David Cameron Donald Trump George Osborne Henry Fielding Idiocracy Jacob Rees Mogg James Beattie (poet) James Gilray Jeremy Corbyn John Kay King of the Hill Mike Judge Private Eye Richard Herring Stewart Lee Steve Bell Theresa May The Day Today Vice During ‘Adam’s Little Game’, Adam and Jo discuss the following images: A Victory for the Common Man (Bob Moran) L’Amour Plus Fort Que La Haine (Charlie Hebdo) The Pen is Mightier that the Sword (Macleod) David Cameron Having a Good Old Fashioned Strangle Wank to Celebrate his Election Victory (Jim’ll Paint It) Adam and Jo and Wendy also discuss the work of John Kay. Explore the work of John Kay at the National Galleries Join Jo and Adam again at the same time next week for: 1.5. Satire and Laughter Should satire make us laugh? Is satire always funny? Why do we laugh at things anyway? Adam and Jo are joined by Dr Kate Davison (University of Sheffield) to talk about the social history of laughter, and the various satires of the eighteenth-century tavern keeper Ned Ward.
August 19, 2019
EP.3 - Satire & the Novel
What is the difference between a satirical novel and a novel with satire in it? Adam and Jo are joined by Dr Helen Williams (Northumbria University) to talk about one of the best known satirical novels of all time: Laurence Sterne’s The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gent. In this episode Adam and Jo and Helen talk about: A Cock and Bull Story Alan Partridge Alexander Pope Austen, Northanger Abbey Charles Dickens Charlotte Brontë Comedy Form François Rabelais George and Weedon Grossmith, The Diary of a Nobody Henry Fielding, Shamela Henry Fielding, Joseph Andrews Henry Fielding, Tom Jones Henry Mckenzie, Man of Feeling Jane Austen Jonathan Swift Jerome k. Jerome, The Men In a Boat Lady Mary Montagu Laetitia Pilkington Laurence Sterne Narrative Novels Political satire Reading and reading practices Reform Richardson, Pamela Robert Dodsley Samuel Richardson Sensibility Sterne, The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy Sterne, A Political Romance Sterne, A sentimental Journey Sterniana Steve Coogan Stewart Lee Tobias Smollett, The Diary of Humphrey Clinker The Trip William Thackeray York in the Eighteenth Century Join Jo and Adam again at the same time next week for: Satire and the ImageDo you need words to do satire? If a picture can say a thousand words, how much satire can it do? Adam and Jo are joined by Wendy McGlashan (University of Aberdeen) to talk about eighteenth-century print-maker, miniaturist and satire merchant, John Kay.
August 12, 2019
EP.2 - Satire & Celebrity
Jo and Adam are joined by Gráinne O’Hare (Newcastle University) and Katie Snow (University of Exeter) to talk about the relationship between satire and celebrity and consider the position of the woman as satirist and the subject of satire. In this episode Adam and Jo Talk to Gráinne O’Hare and Katie Snow About: Alexander Pope Bluestockings Breastfeeding Celebrity The Dunciad Eighteenth-Century Popular Culture Frankie Boyle Georgiana Duchess of Devonshire Instagram Jonathan Swift Lady Mary Montagu Mock the Week Motherhood Prostitute Memoirs Stewart Lee Taylor Swift Join Adam and Jo again next week for: Satire & the Novel What is the difference between a satirical novel and a novel with satire in it? Adam and Jo are joined by Dr Helen Williams (Northumbria University) to talk about one of the best known satirical novels of all time: Laurence Sterne’s The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gent. Release date: 11/4/2019
August 04, 2019
EP.1 - What even is satire?
Adam and Jo start at the very beginning with the biggest question of all: what even is satire? What did it used to be in the olden days and what is it now, in the age of Twitter, Trump and Brexit? In this episode Adam and Jo talk about: Alexander Pope Ali G Armando Iannucci A Modest Proposal Brass Eye Brexit Brexit 50p Chris Morris David Schneider Definitions of satire The Death of Stalin Donald Trump The Dunciad Fake News and spin Festival of Brexit George III doing a poo in a field John Dryden Jonathan Pie Jonathan Swift Ian Hislop ‘I Object’ Exhibition at the British Museum Lee Mack Michael McIntyre Penguins in the White House Piers Morgan Political correctness (mad?) Sacha Baron Cohen’s Who is America? Scriblerius Club South Park Stewart Lee Theresa May Twitter Next Week: Satire and Celebrity Jo and Adam are joined by Gráinne O’Hare (Newcastle University) and Katie Snow (University of Exeter) to talk about the relationship between satire and celebrity and consider the position of the woman as satirist and the subject of satire. Visit Jo and Adam's website for even more satire!
July 29, 2019