Wednesday, April 29, 2015

HMOTD 005: Hot Blooded

Rob & Mike discuss the WKRP episodes "Mama's Review" and "A Date With Jennifer" with special guest star Chris Tatro.

Full show notes appear at Hold My Order Terrible Dresser two days after each episode is released. All audio clips are the property of their owners/creators and appear in this work of comment and critique under fair use provisions of copyright law.

Check out this episode!

Monday, April 27, 2015

What "Love Returns" Wrought

After launching with considerable fanfare, WKRP in Cincinnati's ratings declined steadily over the first half of the first season. After the creative and ratings nadir of "Love Returns," CBS pulled WKRP from the schedule for retooling. The Wall Street Journal, which had carried a piece promoting the show's premiere, now described it as "temporarily cancelled."

(Click through for PDF.) (If for some reason you need a PDF of this.)

No hiatus for us, though! At least not yet. We'll have a new podcast this Wednesday, revisiting "Mama's Review" (a clip episode designed to onboard new viewers after the show returned two months later) and "A Date With Jennifer."

Friday, April 24, 2015

Show notes for HMOTD 004: I Thought Turkeys Could Fly

Listen to HMOTD 004: I Thought Turkeys Could Fly.

0:00 Listen. Some will say we went too far in this episode, maybe even reached a little bit in our conclusions about the Big Guy and the occult underpinnings of WKRP. My model for this sort of pop culture overanalysis has always been this little throwaway line in Douglas Coupland's Microserfs, which I read at a very crucial time in my life. Protagonist Dan is relaxing in his Microsoft-geek house in Redmond with roommate "Bug Barbecue" and watching TV:
Bug is here in the living room watching "Casper the Friendly Ghost" cartoons on the VCR, "looking for subtext." I can't believe it, but I'm getting into it, too. ("Wait, Bug - rewind that back a few seconds - wasn't that a Masonic compass?")
I also know both Rob and I are heavily influenced if not outright indebted to the great Ken Hite and his own series of close readings of history for those with an occult/conspiratorial bent, Suppressed Transmission. We've both shamelessly ripped the Suppressed Transmission format off in past and in present, so to Ken, just a quick note of acknowledgement and thanks for the inspiration for all those Livejournal posts and for this episode of HMOTD and our ongoing Cincinnati Triangle segment. As we are not Avram Davidson, we are stealing Ken's bit.

The uncollected Suppressed Transmissions are diabolically hard to get hold of in this fallen age, but you can get a regular dosage of Hitean weirdness from Ken's excellent podcast Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff (with the also great but perhaps less demented Robin Laws) or from his bimonthly column, Ken Writes About Stuff. Again, we swear we're not ripping you guys off with this one Canadian, one American, two-man podcast format.

tl;dr version: We seek the Grail, what can I tell ya? *shrug*

02:40 "There's something cool about the confidence to wait until minute 17 to drop the joke on you." Let's just call that Meta Moment #1 for this podcast.

07:30 Richard Sanders even says "Get this, Johnny, can you get this, Johnny?" or an equivalent (I can't hear over the studio audience) in his turkey drop narration, a reference to Morrison desperately making sure his engineer Charlie Nehlsen is getting the sound.

08:38 Herbert Morrison's real voice was considerably deeper than what you hear in the famous broadcast of the Hindenburg disaster--his recorder was running slow. You can find corrected versions on YouTube; they actually sound less like Richard Sanders' pastiche.

09:15 If I may again take our occult weirdness close reading for a ride: the Pink Floyd track "Dogs" made me think on second viewing, after all our Fisher King silliness, of the Irish culture hero CĂș Chulainn, a.k.a. the Hound of Culann, who slayed the hound who was guarding the smith Culann's house and then offered to serve in the hound's place. Watch this later as we talk about Johnny.

09:37 What you're hearing here is the original version of this episode, with Pink Floyd's "Dogs." (Fair use! But don't tell Roger Waters.) On the Shout Factory DVD, a close soundalike has been used, and a bit of dialogue has been cut ("What's the name of that orchestra?" "Pink Floyd." "Ooh, is that Pink Floyd?"). But it's not bad.

11:11 A callback to episode 2, in which we took the band Detective's name in vain.

12:50 Skinny Bobby Harper's life is super interesting (I want my wake held at a Dave and Buster's: skeeball, beer, and mourning for all!), as is Jerry Blum's. And this oral history of "Turkeys Away" will do the best to de-bisociate all the versions of the turkey giveaway story.

15:30 ChickieNobs! Also, the venerable urban legend of "Animal 57." That is some kibo Usenet realness right there.

16:20 Rob, Sarah Palin thinks we're BOTH wimps. Also, how depressing is it that video from as recent as 2008 can look this blurry to 2015 eyes?

17:50 "It gets pretty strange after that." And that (at minute 17, mind you), is this podcast's Meta Moment #2.

19:00 So yeah. You do something outrageous or transgressive and you do it well, and it becomes legend. Luckily, there are Wikipedia pages for both "Chuckles Bites the Dust" and "The Contest." But not one for "Turkeys Away." I suspect history erasure thanks to the Turkey Working.

21:00 Not to go to the Wikipedia well one too many times, but the Fisher King legend is so multi-dimensional and has been told and retold so many times that we need a little bit of, well, encyclopedic-ness. Wikipedia does warn us that this article has multiple issues.

24:10 The three issues of Sandman I cite here are the ones with the Emperor Augustus, Emperor Norton, and Caliph Haroun. And, of course, here's Henry V in disguise.

28:00 He's history's greatest monster!! Transcript here. Can you imagine a President having the guts to say stuff like this today? "These wounds are still very deep. They have never been healed." Indeed, JC. Indeed.

30:00 Our source for all things ritualistic related to the turkey is Karen Davis's More Than a Meal: The Turkey in History, Myth, Ritual, and Reality.

30:45 Ben Franklin on the turkey (you'll need to click through the disclaimer). And this... this is one of those facts that creeps even ME out. This reference to the turkey being superior to the bald eagle was made on the occasion of a society presenting medals (medals on which the bird was apparently so badly sculpted that it resembled a turkey, which led to jokes and Franklin's timely defense of the humility of the turkey) to American allies in France after the Revolutionary War's conclusion. That society's name?

The Society of the Cincinnati. (Named of course for the Roman who wisely laid down his arms after he was needed by his nation.)

Sometimes... sometimes, this podcast.

33:00 Ronald Reagan, Oliver North, and turkey pardoning.

34:10 I can't be the only one whose blood ran cold hearing this jolly anecdote about a bleeding turkey from the Gipper. I immediately thought of this. And we're back to man-made chickens.

37:24 Southern Ontarians of the right vintage will recognize the great Vincent Price, on Hamilton, Ontario's own CHCH-TV's beloved, demented kiddie show Hilarious House of Frightenstein. Hammer kids, represent!

38:00 Our mentions of the "Turkey Working" is yes, more or less an explicit reference to Jack Parsons, L. Ron Hubbard, Aleister Crowley and the Babalon Working.

Thank you, Hugh Wilson.

39:13 "That doesn't make a lick of sense!" And that would be Meta Moment #3.

40:45 The story of Linda Ronstadt and Jerry Brown. Former AND current Governor of California, by the way.

43:19 We got the subtitle confused, but Rob's referring here to Michael Kassel's America's Favorite Radio Station, one of our go-to sources for WKRP history and trivia.

43:52 This curiously lukewarm introduction ("I guess it's good enough for me") comes from Jose Feliciano, on Burt Sugarman's The Midnight Special.

45:30 Linda Ronstadt and Philip K. Dick.

46:30 All credit to filmmaker and YouTube personality Anna Kay Akana and her, um, "BonerBookClub." Yes, Anna, PKD was indeed craaaaazy.

47:30 Cheesy late-night record compilation commercials seem to be a universal constant for people raised in the 70s or 80s. Not only do Rob and I (a Canadian and an American) remember these, but so does my British wife AND the creators of Blackadder, so apparently it was a Thing in the UK as well.

48:20 Linda Ronstadt, of course, owning Warren Zevon's "Poor Poor Pitiful Me."

50:00 "No way for a figurant to win. No possible voice or focus for the encaged figurant. Gately speculates briefly about the suicide statistics for bottom-rung actors."

52:40 *wink* *WINK*

52:58 That's Dave Thomas' rather unfortunate character "Lin Ye Tang" on SCTV's "Doorway to Hell." "I ruined this whole episode." And that's Meta Moment #4. Thanks, everybody!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

HMOTD 004: I Thought Turkeys Could Fly

This is the big one! Rob & Mike go deep into WKRP in Cincinnati's famous Thanksgiving episode, "Turkeys Away"! Plus we spare a few minutes for the existential horror of "Love Returns."

Full show notes appear at Hold My Order Terrible Dresser two days after each episode is released. All audio clips are the property of their owners/creators and appear in this work of comment and critique under fair use provisions of copyright law.

Check out this episode!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Cincinnati Beat

Fellow babies!

So I listen to a lot of podcasts, and I admit I often roll my eyes at how the hosts of fledgling podcast always seem to be hustling for love "engagement," in the form of email, comments, feedback, and the like. But now that I have a fledgling podcast of my own, I get it. Because it is SO EXCELLENT that people are actually listening to this thing, and it is SO FUN to get email, comments, feedback, and the like. So thank you. Thank you. You are awesome and I hope you keep listening and enjoying and commenting for as long as this little ride goes.

There are a few running themes in the emails, comments, and conversations I've had about last week's episode. To wit:

Joyce Armor

Some of the hardcore KRP experts among you pointed out that Joyce Armor, the name of the real-life writer of episode 6, "Bailey's Show," is also the name of a character on a later episode of WKRP. What can I say? We're watching these in order so the fourth-season episodes are really not on my radar yet. It just goes to show: 99.9% of the world would say Mike and I are dangerously obsessed with this show, but at least two of my good friends are giving me grief for not being obsessed enough. Anyway, yes. I admit I had forgotten this, but in the fourth-season episode "An Explosive Affair" (aka the one with the Phone Cops), Jennifer's predecessor as the station receptionist is named Joyce Armor! Crazy. Is it a shout-out to the real-life Joyce Armor? An inside joke? I'm sure we'll talk about all that when we get there. In the meantime, enjoy our buddy Chris' theory that WKRP is some kind of hyperfictional metatext riffing on Grant Morrison's The Invisibles.

Were we too hard on Team Bailey?

Several people, including my wife*, have said we were too tough on Bailey fans in our last episode. (* Who is beautiful, bespectacled, smart, and sometimes underappreciated at work. Hmm...) Let me be clear on this: we still love Bailey! We just don't claim that ours is a minority opinion. If we were tough on Team Bailey, it's because we were being tough on our own selves.

To make it up to you, here are several early pictures of Jan Smithers. See if you can look past her awkward exterior to appreciate the beauty within.

Close Encounters was Not Scary

I have to agree. Man up, Mike!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Show notes for HMOTD 003: Speed Kills, Del

0:00 The title of this week's podcast not only refers to Del's seemingly dexedrine-aided loquaciousness (and the motto of the methamphetamine awareness campaign started by Dr. David E. Smith of the Haight-Ashbury Free Clinic), but may also be a more oblique reference to the very current-in-1978 controversy over the much-maligned National Maximum Speed Law in the United States. I had always thought that the speed limit was a Carter initiative but no, it was Nixon, during the first oil crisis!

6:00 The Squeaky Fromme assassination attempt on Gerald Ford is the strange mid-70s coda to the already-strange saga of the Manson Family.

6:30 Here's another great Wikipedia summary for D.B. Cooper. Sorry about the mistaking "Dan" for "Don." Obviously too excited about that Don Draper theory.

7:30 I very enthusiastically recommend The Skies Belong To Us. Just a great, riveting read.

9:00 My esteemed collaborator was apparently as tickled as I was by David Lynch's portrayal of an old-timey agent on Louie.

14:45 Oh man, can I just say? I spent one year in Toronto in grad school in the late 90s. I took two pilgrimages to Suspect Video and it was indeed as good as its reputation indicated.

16:15 AFSCME! The Amalgamated... F-Federalizat... hey, apparently I, too, don't know what the fuck it means (NSFW!).

20:30 Unsurprisingly, if you listened to Del's on-air monologue, Hamilton Camp later became a very prolific voice actor. All you 90s Kids will know him from Darkwing Duck as Gizmoduck and all of you 80s Kids will know him as Greedy Smurf AND Harmony Smurf.

22:00 "Don't. Praise. The machine." Also, here's a capsule history of radio automation.

25:00 What the crap, Samsung. Seriously.

26:40 Michael Kassel's book is fast becoming an indispensable concordance for this podcast. Yeoman work, Mr. Kassel, bravo.

28:00 Joyce Armor's IMDB. After you've worked on WKRP, Love Boat, and Remington Steele, what else is there?

31:45 Excerpts from Newsweek's "The Teen-agers" issue here, including the Jan Smithers cover.

36:35 This is from the fantastic second season Mad Men episode "Maidenform."

38:17 Here's Dawn Wells (Gilligan's Island's Mary-Ann) on forty years of the the question, "Ginger or Mary-Ann?" She's good-natured about it, but immediately sees it is all about the male ego. "A boy could go to the prom with Mary-Ann. You had to be a man to court Ginger."

40:15 I dropped the Good Will Hunting reference, so it's up to me to post the video, and I'll just pretend Robin Williams is telling me about this Bailey vs. Jennifer-at-20 thing, "It's not your fault, Mike. It's not your fault."

44:00 Extraterrestrials. Magic and Witchcraft. Missing Persons. Myths and Monsters. Lost Civilizations. Special Phenomena. My six dream Jeopardy! categories.

46:00 C'mon son. C'MON SON.

47:15 Here it is. UFOs Are Real (1979). I want you to watch this and pretend you are 6 years old watching this on WSBK-TV 38 in Boston in 1981. Betty Hill first appears at 1:06:45. Oh, and here's the movie poster. Pleasant dreams.

49:00 Black triangle UFOs. Project Mayflower. Mrs. Woodruff's business card above. IT'S ALL RELATED PEOPLE

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

HMOTD 003: Speed Kills, Del

Rob & Mike discuss the WKRP in Cincinnati episodes "Holdup" and "Bailey's Show," along with hijacking, unions, the great Bailey vs. Jennifer "debate," and UFOs.

This episode is rated PG-13 for foul-mouthed teamsters and scary grey aliens. All audio clips are the property of their owners/creators and appear in this work of comment and critique under fair use provisions of copyright law.

Check out this episode!

Monday, April 13, 2015

The Cincinnati Triangle

In last week's episode, we talked about Johnny's hoax story about "the Cincinnati Triangle" and how it fits into our overall mission with Hold My Order, Terrible Dresser to expose the conspiratorial weirdness that exists beneath the surface of WKRP in Cincinnati. I've been thinking, if I ever did get the chance to interview Hugh Wilson as a result of putting together this podcast, the one question I would absolutely need an answer to would be, "How much did you and the other writers dig all this late-70s weirdness, and how much of it was just in the air at the time?"

Because in the late 70s, America was experiencing a golden age of conspiratorial, occult, and otherwise Weird subjects. Science fiction was having one of its periodic breaks into the mainstream, not just from the overwhelming success of Star Wars, but also the success of the ur-text of late-70s pop culture UFOlogy, Close Encounters of the Third Kind (also released in 1977). Television shows like In Search Of..., itself launched as a result of the success of a couple of ancient astronaut documentaries earlier in the 70s, were successful and ubiquitous on syndicated TV.

Why all this weirdness? Well, certainly a big part of it was the maturing and entry into the mainstream of various Aquarian ideals left over from the 60s. The human potential movement had broken out of the hot tubs of Big Sur and gone into the mainstream in a big way, in ways both benign and sinister. The counterculture ethos, long intertwined in America with movements like alternate religions and Theosophy, had found new and fertile ground in the societal change that continued into the 1970s, so much so that stuff like the Bermuda Triangle could be successfully mined for humor in a network sitcom; recognition by the mainstream audience at home and in the studio could occur without much explanation.

The Cincinnati Triangle, then, will be the name of our regular feature on the eliptony at the fringes of WKRP's humor, the existence of an unearthly and unheimlich reality underneath the homely and familiar at a middle America radio station. We'll be diving very deeply into this in the Cincinnati Triangle segment of this Wednesday's podcast.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Show notes for HMOTD 002: Scum of the Earth

6:45 I first read of the "benign violation" theory in the pages of Slate; this article summarizes the theories of Professors Peter McGraw and Caleb Warren, and this page has some of their published work on the idea, as well as a TEDx talk. Yes, the name of their humor research lab is HuRL.

10:00 Here are the details of the groundbreaking case that won women journalists access in locker rooms (in theory) and here is the sad story of the Lisa Olson case from Wikipedia. The Olson case loomed large in my own history, as a New Englander, a Patriots fan, and at the time, as an aspiring journalist. I was editor-in-chief of my high school newspaper and I remember the details of the case being debated VERY intensely and fiercely by the editorial staff of my very Catholic all-boys' high school newspaper. I should also add that a large part of Lisa Olson's decision to relocate to Australia (by the way, sorry Australia, I did make a cheap shot at you there) was the Boston sports fans' harassment and threatening her after the story broke. There is sadly a long history of this in Boston sports fandom; sometimes it's really embarrassing to be a Boston sports fan.

14:10 Steve Buckley's excellent coming-out article is sadly now behind the Boston Herald's paywall, but this article from competitor the Boston Globe offers a good summary of the reaction.

I'd be remiss if I also did not mention two recent, very tragic stories around how badly the sports world and specifically the sports journalism world treated trans issues: the story of trans sports journalist Christine Daniels and Grantland's horrific handling of the case of "Dr. V," Essay Anne Vanderbilt.

17:30 The Golden Age of Dramedies! Listener Len McCain reminded us in an email this week about Hugh Wilson's late-80s project with Tim Reid, Frank's Place, which sits squarely in the dramedy movement of that period.

17:40 TVTropes is the best. Also... yes, in this first season of WKRP there is certainly a whole lot of humor at the expense of the mentally ill. Hello, 1978.

18:30 Abe Vigoda: still alive.

19:30 Rob's theory that sitcoms line up with the ages of comic books is entirely sui generis and all credit should be given to him. The various ages of comic books Rob discusses here can be unpacked and explored in more detail here. Or you could just read Grant Morrison's Flex Mentallo.

23:20 That Dilbert cartoon can be found here. And that just goes to show you... man. I was reading Dilbert VERY early in its existence.

26:30 Check Rob's post from earlier in the week on The Wall Street Journal article about the birth of WKRP In Cincinnati.

28:30 I regret citing Silly Election and not The Upper-Class Twit of the Year Show.


31:15 Erratum 1: Rob of course meant to say Quincy M.E., for "medical examiner."

32:10 Am I crazy, or is Quincy's interlocutor here indirectly quoting or referencing Plato's Republic on music?

33:40 Erratum 2: Mike of course meant to say "Subaru" and not "Volkswagen." Jeremy Davies still remains guilty.

36:50 Much like Apple Records, look upon Swan Song Records' works, ye mighty, and despair.

37:40 The secret history of Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa.

39:25 What You Want Is in the Limo: On the Road with Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper, and the Who in 1973, the Year the Sixties Died and the Modern Rock Star Was Born. Good title.

40:30 We are going to officially christen the Weirdness segment of our show, "The Cincinnati Triangle." Also, let's be sure to note that a scant couple of months after this episode aired, Ohio State football coach and local legend Woody Hayes had his infamous on-field incident at the Gator Bowl and was dismissed summarily. JOHNNY FEVER IS THE DEMIURGE

42:30 Charles Fort. Charles Fort is the best, guys.

43:30 We come full circle with Slate with this article about order vs. chaos muppets.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

HMOTD 002: Scum of the Earth

Mike and Rob unpack WKRP in Cincinnati episodes 3 and 4, “Les on a Ledge” and “Hoodlum Rock.” Discussed: gender panic, hilarious suicide attempts of the 1970s, unconvincing rock star debauchery, and the punk rock car.
All audio clips are the property of their owners/creators and appear in this work of comment and critique under fair use provisions of copyright law.

Check out this episode!

Monday, April 6, 2015

WKRP in the WSJ

Hey, check this out: The following article was published in the Wall Street Journal on September 18, 1978, the day that WKRP in Cincinnati premiered on CBS. The article discusses WKRP's debut and describes the filming of WKRP's fourth episode, "Hoodlum Rock." We discuss that episode, and this article, in our second podcast, which comes out this Wednesday.

(Click through for the full article in PDF.)

Click through for the whole article in PDF. It's a great picture of the show in embryo, and a funny snapshot of the TV business at that time--it took 25 million viewers to be "on the way to becoming" a hit!

I'm happy to say we won't need those kind of numbers to consider ourselves a hit. As of this writing, our pilot podcast has been downloaded 200 times, which is humbling and kind of ridiculous. Thanks so much for checking out the show, and please continue spreading the word. Our next podcast, featuring WKRP episodes 3 & 4, "Les on a Ledge" and "Hoodlum Rock," will be posted here on Wednesday morning. But remember that you can subscribe and get every episode automatically by plugging the address of our RSS feed into the podcast app of your choice: 

Friday, April 3, 2015

Show notes for HMOTD 001: Booger

Note: all audio clips in this podcast/still images in this blog are the property of their creators and owners and appear in this work of comment and critique under fair use provisions of copyright law.

Also note: These show notes do contain spoilers for our podcast. They're intended for those who've already listened.

4:30 Greil Marcus’s The Dustbin of History can be found here.

7:00 I don’t have $80 to blow on this, but just LOOK at this thing. For a TV nerd, that looks like an endless source of never-wases and couldn’t-bes.

9:30 But you should blow ~$80 on Shout! Factory’s WKRP boxed set. Other than TV sitcoms and great animated series, Shout! has kept MST3K alive on video for over a decade. As a BIG MSTie, this pleases me.

12:05 In the 1981 Grey Cup, the Edmonton Eskimos defeated the Ottawa Rough Riders, 26-23. Edmonton scored only one rouge, in the second quarter. #CanCon

12:30 A Wikipedia article about the loss of Doctor Who episodes mentioning the ephemeralness of videotape in the 1960s and '70s.

21:00 When I think about iconic sitcom objects, I’m naturally thinking of the Smithsonian’s exhibits on American TV.

25:00 People have been mocking Lawrence Welk for being square since the FIFTIES. Thank you, Stan Freberg.

30:20 Wally Schirra played by the legendary Lance Henriksen in The Right Stuff. No reason to mention this, other than I love Lance Henriksen.

31:45 I can’t go off on a 1970s cults tangent, because I will be here all day, but you can watch Robert Stack beat up a bunch of cultists at the airport.

34:35 We got both Pulp Fiction and a Blue Album track onto this podcast. The dream of the 90s is alive on podcasts!

36:40 Apparently there are multiple commentaries out there on YouTube overlaid on KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park. Most by KISS fans, which I find somehow oddly endearing.

41:00 Here's an excellent WBCN oral history. And a nice note: the producers and creators of WKRP made sure to take the station down from 50,000 watts to 5,000 watts after the pilot.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

It is time for this town to get DOWN!

Some thoughts the day after our first episode went live...

First of all, thanks to everyone who's posted a link, downloaded and listened, or otherwise boosted our signal. We're very grateful and honestly pleasantly surprised at the response and reaction thus far.

Wednesdays are when our episodes will go live and be available for download, and on Fridays we'll present you with our collective "Directors' Cut" notes about references, errata, and other interesting facts about the episodes of WKRP we've just reviewed, so expect that tomorrow. These notes will contain spoilers for the episode just "aired," so keep that in mind if you plan to follow this blog.

I've just listened to my esteemed co-creator's edit of Episode 3 (due up on U.S. Tax Day, the 15th), and it is a doozy. A lot of stuff very near and dear to my own heart, and if you've liked our hazy, misty look at our respective childhoods in the late '70s, well, you're going to especially like this one.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

HMOTD 001: Booger

In our pilot episode, we discuss the pilot episode of WKRP in Cincinnati, along with the show’s cleverly-named second episode, “Pilot Part 2.”

Check out this episode!

A WKRP Podcast? Really?

Hell, yes! WKRP in Cincinnati was one of the great American sitcoms, underappreciated in its own time but kept alive in syndication and deeply loved by the kids and teenagers who grew up with it in the 1970s and 80s. The recent release of the entire series on DVD—in a great package from Shout Factory, cleaned up and carefully restored with virtually all the original music intact—is the perfect opportunity to rewatch the show and/or (re)discover it (again) for the first to third time.

Mike and I are your genial hosts. In each episode of the podcast, we’ll discuss two episodes of WKRP in Cincinnati, returning to our childhoods—not without trepidation—to see what holds up, what’s aged poorly, and what has changed since the days of Linda Ronstadt and the KISS Army.

You can watch along with us, but you don’t need to watch to enjoy the podcast. Each episode is really just a jumping-off point for a wide-ranging discussion of TV and radio history, the politics and culture of the Carter to Reagan years, Bailey’s unfortunate fashion choices, and whether Johnny was high. Not to mention the occult conspiratorial weirdness that seems to crackle just beneath the surface of the show. And besides loving WKRP, Mike and I are both Professional Historians with advanced degrees from Snooty Schools*, so you know our pop history riffs and rants are the real deal.

*This podcast is in no way endorsed by any Snooty Schools, though I occasionally borrow audio equipment from Western University’s world-class digital history lab.

So check out an episode or subscribe to our RSS feed. We'll be launching on iTunes and all the other fine podcast aggregating services once we have a few more episodes in the can. A new episode will come out every other Wednesday, with show notes, errata, and apologies on Friday. (That means our “Turkeys Away” episode comes out on April 22. Mark your calendars!)

Hold My Order, Terrible Dresser is a labor of love—nerdy, nostalgic, misguided love—so it’s unsponsored and absolutely free. But we do need you to boost the signal! I apologize in advance for the hustling we’re going to be doing for links, likes, tweets, and those all-important iTunes reviews. That’s how it goes in the Economy of Clicks. I don’t think we have any illusions about how many people are out there waiting for a WKRP in Cincinnati podcast, but we want to make sure that everyone who IS out there waiting for a WKRP in Cincinnati podcast gets a chance to discover HMOTD. So please let them know.

And yes, at some point we’ll explain our inane title.