"Spirits and Chat with Jon and Matt" is a podcast hosted by real-life married couple Jonathan Emerson and Matthew Pohlman. Each week they watch an episode of a classic television show where a character is involved in a play (like the time Marge Simpson was in "Oh Streetcar!" or when Jackie Harris was an understudy to lead role in "Cyrano de Bergerac") and break down what the show got right and wrong about life in the theater.
Who should have won the Best Musical Tony in 1999: Fosse, Parade, or Yetta's letters? This week we sip on refreshing Fresca (which Jonathan "absolutely" recommends with a splash of delicious Absolute Vodka for a quick Summer cocktail) and then fall in love with everything Yetta on The Nanny. Join us as we deep dive all that is wrong with the production timeline of turning Yetta's Letters from actual letters into a broadway musical in six weeks, why Fran Drescher is a comedy goddess, and debate whether Yetta should have chosen Richard or Joe.
If you were ever looking for a cartoon that could touch on pretty much all of theater's tropiest tropes, look no further than Family Guy. This week we sip on Spice Professors' delicious golden starfruit tea (our first non-alcoholic beverage featured on the show. Also apparently we are loose leaf tea people now. Who would've thunk it?) and talk about all of the other amazing tea and spice treasures we found at the Bryant Park Winter Market. Then we enter stage right with the season two Family Guy episode "The King Is Dead", and tread the boards with Peter Griffin as he slowly turns Lois' production of The King and I into a weird mashup of Flashdance, Flash Gordon, and Dune.
In every generation there is born two snarky gay men to talk about your favorite television episodes where the characters "put on a play." We are talking about ourselves of course! This week we the we sip on Blue Moon (which was delicious and has not turned us into neanderthals...yet) and chat about the season one, episode nine episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer: "The Puppet Show." Listen to us deep dive the humor and the horror of school talent shows, debate whether Principal Snyder or Sid the Dummy is creepier, and review the scoobies performance of Oedipus Rex.
We're going back to the 90s this week and watching that episode of "Saved By The Bell" where the kids put on a rap version of "Snow White and Seven Dwarves" and Jessie and Zack may or may not have feelings for each other. We sip on Svedka and Sprike (something that Zack may have concocted while raiding his parent's liquor cabinet) and enjoy that gang's antics as they predate "Hamilton" by taking a well known story and infusing it with a hip hop beat. This is a rare episode in which Zack Morris ISN'T complete trash and where Kelly and Slater need to grow up and trust their respective partners. And as always, Lisa Turtle gets all the good lines.
In this week's episode the boys deep dive The Office and in particular the episode that explores the Scranton, PA community theater scene. We start off by tasting the classic cocktail the 7&7 (made with the delicious Tullamore Dew Irish Whisky we found in the locked bottom drawer of Meredith's desk), discuss The Office and its take on Sweeney Todd, and of course no discussion about theater would be complete without multiple references to the legendary Patti LuPone.
Jon and Matt discuss that episode of "The Golden Girls" where the ladies are in a production of Picnic (er, or a play that is loosely kinda based on Picnic. Let's call it Not-Picnic) with super handsome womanizer Patrick Vaughn. From Sophia in an adorable pirate costume to a familiar love triangle with the girls all vying for Patrick's attention, this episode is more concerned with slapstick shenanigans than accurately portraying life in the arts. Nevertheless we can't help but laugh at all the familiar community theater tropes this episode portrays. Thank you for being a friend and listening!
Jackie Harris faces the classic actor's nightmare of having to go onstage without knowing any of your lines in this season three episode of Roseanne. The guys sip on Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (something Roseanne and Dan might enjoy on a night out at the Lobo) and discuss Cyrano De Bergerac, the thankless jobs in community theater, and how everyone in Lanford needs to cut Jackie some serious slack.
On the season three premiere, Jon and Matt discuss the classic Simpsons episode where Marge is cast as Blanche Dubois in a musical version of A Streetcar Named Desire. From passive aggressive directors, to non-existent fight calls, to leads that are cast solely on their looks, this episode goes deep into life in the community theater. Also we take a detour to the weird world of Ayn Rand when Maggie is forced to attend an objectivism-inspired daycare (Maggie is a total ninja).
Jon and Matt chat with Courtney Reardon (Travel Channel's Portals to Hell and Ghost Adventures) and Andrew Hill from Seadside Shadows Haunted Tours in Mystic, CT. Courtney describes her experiences growing up in an actual haunted house and what led her to create the tour company, and Andrew shares the mystical event that changed his view on the paranormal forever. For more info about Seaside Shadows and to book tickets for upcoming tours, please visit https://www.seasideshadows.com/
We wrap up this nightmare of a year by talking about the darker figures in holiday lore (such as Krampus, Belsnickel, and La Befana), the Christmas films that gave us chills, and why Home Alone is the most disturbing movie of all time.
This week we are joined by Nancy Mades-Byrd. Nancy is a tour guide with Salem Historical Tours in Salem, MA and host of the podcast "Witch Hunt." We discuss with her the history of witch persecution in the United States and also her personal paranormal experiences while leading tours.
For more information about Salem Historical Tours, please visit their website at www.salemhistoricaltours.com.
In this episode we welcome season two's very first guest, Miriam Cole. Miriam is a tour guide at the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum in Weston, WV and shares with us the history of the asylum as well as her first hand experience with its ghosts.
This week we're discussing the legendary cocktail named after a terrifying ghost, the Bloody Mary! Jon starts off the show by serving up the drink, which doesn't exactly go according to plan (Spoiler alert: it tasted terrible). Then we discuss the legendary ghoul herself, including Matt's unsuccessful attempts at conjuring her, Bloody Mary's connecting to British history, and why kids are so drawn to summoning her spirit.
Jon and Matt kick off their brand new season by serving up the vodka gimlet, one of the many drinks used to treat scurvy in the 19th century (seriously what as up with all the scurvy in the 1800s?). Then Jon tells not one, but two frightening stories from his childhood. One involving a Teddy Ruxpin toy that had a penchant for turning on by itself and another about an ominous nightlight casting demonic shadows on his bathroom walls. What causes these electronics to activate on their own? Could it be a simple circuit malfunction, or is there something more supernatural and sinister at play? Enjoy the new season, and maybe tonight DON'T leave the lights on.
Here's a sneak peek of season two of "Spirits and Chat with Jon and Matt"! This season we will be shifting gears a bit and focusing on the world of the supernatural. Have you ever had a ghostly encounter or witnessed something supernatural? If so we'd love to hear from you! Send us an email at SpiritsandChatPodcast@gmail.com or drop us a DM on Facebook or Twitter. Also enjoy a preview of our new theme song, written and performed by the fabulous Mikki Hommel!
We're in a New York state of mind this week as we serve the classic Manhattan. Next up we interview Brette Morningstar to discuss her life as a working actress in NYC. Finally we geek out over everyone's favorite Marvel super hero group, the X-Men!
This week we rummaged through our supplies and only came up with vodka and orange juice, so we combined them and made the delightful brunch cocktail known as the Screwdriver (which oddly enough is an iconic drink in LGBTQ history thanks to Miss Anita Bryant). Then it's time to discuss WarPaint, a new brand of makeup specifically created for men. Finally we talk about the trailblazing Nintendo game Super Mario Bros. 2 and how it made history by providing not only one of the first playable female heroes, but also introduced the first transgender character in video game history.
This week the boys turn on their southern charm to serve up the delightful bourbon cocktail known as the mint julep. Next up, they discuss the ways in which they're dealing with anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Finally it's time to discuss the Netflix sensation that everyone and their mother is obsessed with...TIGER KING (and also play a rousing game of "Tiger King or Drag Queen", where Matt asks Jon to identity if quotes come from either Tiger King or Rupaul's Drag Race).
SACWJAM is back after a brief hiatus to serve up the delicious Cuban sensation known as the daiquiri. Next up the guys discuss the trials and tribulations of dog ownership and answer the one question that is on everyone's mind...what breed of dog is the gayest? Then it's time to go back to gritty eighties New York and let Jon explain why "Highlander" is one of the best films of all time (and let Matt tell us why the film is pretty meh). There can be only one!
It’s a very green themed week at “Spirits and Chat” as we mix up the emerald concoction known as the grasshopper. Next we are shocked, SHOCKED I tell you, to learn that former congressman Aaron Schock finally came out of the closet. Then we ease on down the road to the Emerald City to discuss our favorite musical, “Wicked”!
Jon and Matt mix up the classic Old Fashioned, only to discover that it’s basically just bourbon with a whole lotta sugar. Next up they are joined by actress and director Christina Sheehan to talk about her work as a theater artist in NYC and to discuss her next project, “Pippin” (which also happens to feature the two hosts of this podcast). Last but not least, the fellas get their slay on and geek out over “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”
The boys are serving up the classiest drink out there, the martini (shaken not stirred of course). Next they discuss the problems that gay men face in regards to body issues and self esteem. Finally they wrap up the episode by gushing over the best animated movie of all time, “How to Train Your Dragon”!
Jon and Matt welcome their very first in-studio guest Joseph Sebring to discuss life as a television director while sipping on the most potent of cocktails, the Long Island Iced Tea! Then it’s time to dance into the danger zone and gush over “Flashdance”!
In their very first episode of 2020 the boys serve up everyone’s favorite tequila based sensation, the margarita! Next they chat about the complications of traveling as an out gay couple in the Caribbean. Then they dish about every gay man’s favorite sitcom, The Golden Girls!
In their last episode of 2019 Matt and Jon brew up everyone’s favorite tropical drink, the Mai Tai! They are then joined by professional lightning designer Michael Cole to discuss theater, growing up in Texas, and life as a gay geek in NYC. Finally they end the show by discussing the BEST VIDEO GAME OF ALL TIME...Final Fantasy 7!
In this very merry holiday episode the boys discuss everyone’s favorite (or least favorite) holiday drink...eggnog! Then they discuss their favorite holiday traditions such as cooking for friends, finding Christmas magic NYC, and everything that is wonderful and weird about the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Finally they geek out over Gremlins, which technically counts as a Christmas movie.
Jon and Matt serve up the Tom Collins while discussing its complicated history and perform some really bad improv along the way. Then they are joined by the fabulous La Tatoya Lewis to discuss what it was like growing up in NYC, life as an opera singer, and lessons learned while playing a nun three different times! Finally the boys discuss their love (and frustrations) with the musical RENT.
In their premier episode Matt and Jon serve up the classic cosmo and discuss its lengthy and disputed history. Then they are joined by the talented and hilarious Bloo Rodriguez to discuss theater, life in Texas, and explain what exactly a Katdashian is. Finally the boys geek out over Netflix’s new show “The Dark Crystal:Age of Resistance” before playing a spirited game of “Drag Queen or Gelfling?”