An insightful but not too serious look at the Marx Brothers films and careers from three guys who've spent way too much time thinking about them. Hosted by Matthew Coniam ("The Annotated Marx Brothers", "That's Me, Groucho!"), Noah Diamond ("Gimme a Thrill: The Story of I'll Say She Is") and Bob Gassel (he'll write a book someday). Featuring guest appearances by Marx experts, authors and notable fans. Inspired by The Marx Brothers Council Facebook group. New episodes post monthly.
Check out our blog: marxbrotherscouncilpodcast.com
Follow us on Twitter: @MarxBrosPodcast
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30 "K&R vs K&R” (featuring Nick Santa Maria)
A holiday extravaganza because we say it is!
Actor/writer Nick Santa Maria returns for an examination of the Marxes’ two principal writing teams, George S. Kaufman & Morrie Ryskind, and Bert Kalmar & Harry Ruby. We compare their styles and strengths, and go off on numerous unrelated tangents. But first, we detour to Kalmar & Ruby’s original vision for the finale of “A Night at the Opera”, featuring another performance by The Not Ready For Online Players...augmented by Kathy Biehl and Pete Lutz.
Name-checked in this episode: Parkyakarkus, Carroll O’Connor (twice), Paul Harvey
WARNING: Due to Matthew’s overly-festive mood, this episode contains a moment of adult language.
29 "Make That Three Hard Boiled Eggs” (featuring Andy Marx)
In our NEW longest episode yet, we welcome Groucho’s grandson, Andy Marx, for a deep dive into “A Night at the Opera”, and a whole lot more…
Andy recalls growing up with Groucho during the time he went from being a game show host to a legend. We learn about his curious connection to rock stars and speculate on his politics. We also hear about Andy’s other famous grandfather.
Finally (at 28:40), we turn our attention to what most Marx fans agree is their first film for MGM. We try and make sense out of why this reinvention of the team works so well…all while doing the unbearable nitpicking we have become famous for!
Name-checked in this episode: Elton John, Richard Nixon, Scott Alexander
28 “Flywheel, Shyster, and Tefteller”
In our longest episode yet, we barely scratch the surface while talking to archivist John Tefteller. John has spent more than four decades accumulating rare Marx Brothers audio, and is producing a collection of the long-lost radio series “Flywheel, Shyster and Flywheel”.
John details how, as a high school sophomore, he was hired to be Groucho’s personal recording engineer and archivist. His stories of rare finds, heartbreaking misses, and colorful personalities will entertain you more than we ever did. You’ll even get to hear about John’s days as a teenage relationship counselor to Zeppo, and then Erin Fleming.
Yes, your three hosts are present…but about as much as the Marxes are in “The Story of Mankind”
Name-checked in this episode: Bill, Clinton, Perry Como, Ed Begley, Jr.
BONUSCAST The Jay Hopkins Interviews: Volume 5 - Nat Perrin
In our final trip into the vault, we are treated to Jay’s never-before-heard 1984 chat with writer Nat Perrin. Perrin talks about his 50 year association with the Marxes, from contributing gags to “Monkey Business” all the way to Erin Fleming’s legal challenge to Groucho’s estate.
You’ll hear about Nat’s work on the “Flywheel, Shyster and Flywheel” radio series, and his later contributions to “Go West” and “The Big Store”. Perrin also discusses some of his non-Marx films and later TV work.
27 “A Compilation, a Sandwich, and You”
In the spirit of the great comedy compilation films of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s, we’ve decided to create our own “Best of the Marx Brothers” money-grab.
To be precise, the three of us have each compiled our own films…hamstrung by the constraints of our in-house Irving Thalberg. We’ll discuss our scene choices and come up with a final tracklist, all before realizing the whole exercise was pointless.
Did your favorite scene make the cut? Listen and find out, unless you’re an Eve Arden fan, in which case don’t even bother….
Name-checked in this episode: W.C. Fields, Kristen Schaal, Jay Hopkins
26 “The Marx Brothers In A Nutshell” In A Nutshell
Our long overdue look at the definitive Marx Brothers documentary, with special guests, producer/meme Robert B. Weide, and writer/editor Joe Adamson.
The guys take us on Nutshell’s long journey, full of roadblocks and last minute scrambling. How did they get both Paramount and MGM clips when told it was impossible? Why did PBS viewers not see Woody Allen, and no one see Betty Marx? What happens when you ask Gene Kelly to do a retake? These and other questions you never asked will all be answered...
Oh, and if you want to watch “The Marx Brothers in a Nutshell” before listening, you can purchase a dvd at: http://duckprods.com/store.html
Name-checked in this episode: Kurt Vonnegut, Lauren Bacall, Mort Sahl