When we heard that the witty and brilliantly educational podcast Stuff You Should Know was coming to London, we bought our tickets straight away and think we were even in the first 20 to book. Just saying.
My boyfriend introduced me to Stuff You Should Know (SYSK) about a year ago and I now listen to Josh and Chuck most mornings as I get ready for work. However, I didn’t really know what to expect from a live show.
After a little research, I realised they’d be live recording a podcast which would then be added to their site here, for everyone in the online world. They’d also organised a really unique venue in their choice of The Union Chapel, Islington. The working church also helps the homeless and part of the ticket cost supports renovation. It’s also only ten minutes from a Five Guys.
We joined a queue of like-minded fans from around half six in the evening to wait for the doors to open. As the venue has pews for seating, it’s first come for the best seats and most people wanted the aisles to avoid the awkwardness of troubling people to get out. #BritishProblems.
Choosing a side aisle seat at the back, we crept upstairs for a G&T before taking our seats. I was briefly very jealous of Will as he got to shake Chuck’s hand as he did a friendly meet and greet before the show. Luckily, once I was back from the loo I was able to have a quick chat with the man himself and he was nice enough to let me have a selfie:
The show: Grave robbing
The atmosphere was very friendly and Josh and Chuck treated the sell-out crowd to a bit of stand-up before the live recording, mainly detailing how different Manchester can seem to visitors! After apologising to God in advance for discussing the sordid business of grave robbing in a church, it was a great experience to hear their intro live and in person!
“Hey and welcome to the podcast Stuff You Should Know. I’m Josh Clark and this is Charles W ‘Chuck’ Bryant, live from London…” (insane applause from the crowd)
From here on in the topic was told in a way to make you laugh, learn and feel a bit disgusted in equal measure. Being in the room with them and listening was just like being in conversation and it all felt very relaxed and natural.
Some top facts from ‘grave robbing’ would be that this activity had a golden age, that UK law technically allowed it and the practise resulted in riots and a mistrust of medical professionals.
Q & A
The show itself lasted a bit longer than the average podcast – which allows for editing and all the extra audience input – and was followed by a Q & A. This final part of the evening was just as fun and lighthearted with ten or so audience members going up to the stage with their questions. It was also a chance to learn a bit more about Josh and Chuck; Chuck’s high school friend happened to be in the crowd!
End of the night
Darting out of the venue after the last applause to catch our tube, I felt more entertained and hyped-up than from most West End shows. Following their podcast for so long and being really thankful for the content they put out just added to the experience and I’m so glad it was even better live.
After all, how could grave robbing not work? At the start when this topic was announced, I turned to Will and said, “Yes! This is going to be good!”
Doors open: 7pm
Ticket price: £30.00
Seating: No reservation, surprisingly comfy pews
If you haven’t listened to Josh and Chuck before, check out their website and find even more great podcasts from How Stuff Works. The Facebook page is where I hear about new shows going live and you can also download the app.
Were you there or couldn’t get tickets? Have you listened to the show online since? Let me know below!