Personal Podcast

Terry Short’s Podcast Proposal

Podcast Title:
The Delacourte Report

Categories:
Entertainment, Comedy, Humor, News, Current Events.

Concept Summary:
The Delacourte Report is a personality-based perspective on the news, taking pages from predecessors as diverse as Paul Harvey and Steven Colbert. The podcast is hosted by ostensible newsperson, T.R. Delacourte (as played by myself) and features both sober and humorous commentary on news and topical events, spoof news items a la SNL’s Weekend Update and Leno/Letterman monologues, interviews with real and fictional newsmakers, and topical songs, a la Tom Lehrer and “That Was the Week That Was,” the topical satirical show of the 1960s.

T.R. Delacourte is a news personality who, not unlike Steven Colbert, straddles a fine line between dead-serious and over-the-top to make listeners wonder, “Is this guy for real?” and “Did he really do that did he make it up?” For example, the pilot podcast concludes with Delacourte playing what he says is a song by a Folklife busker that he recorded, and then purchased all rights to by tossing a dollar in the busker’s guitar case. As it’s recorded here, most listeners will figure out that the premise is a ruse before the song is over, but the “is this for real” ambiguity could be exploited with all of the podcast’s segments, from the news headlines to the interviews.

Objective:
Initial objective is to use The Delacourte Report as a showcase for my creative capabilities and feature it on my soon-to-be overhauled advertising portfolio site at http://www.cornerofficecom.com. I would be credited as “Writer/Producer,” and would aim to make it a fun point of engagement with prospective clients, who, I’d expect would quickly figure out that T.R. Delacourte is my alter ego. Any blue-sky objectives beyond this, e.g., sponsorships, content licensing, commissions to write a topical musical with Andrew Lloyd Webber, etc. will not be entertained until I have at least a dozen episodes in the can.

Target Audience:
News and current events junkies of all ages and ideologies. A potentially good audience is adolescent and teen-aged males who read Mad Magazine and who might be a very receptive and viral audience for the topical songs.

Promotional Campaign
Initial strategy is to link The Delacourte Report to the primary podcast hubs, guides and communities such iTunes, Podcast.com, Podcast Alley, etc. By including a content summary or excerpts in the show notes featuring names and events in the news, and with proper tagging, I hope to have some SEO success. Homerun attempts would be to get it featured on the NY Times Laughlines http://laughlines.blogs.nytimes.com and mentioned in the Huffington Post. A second-tier campaign would be to actively comment on news-related blogs. The podcast also gives me a good incentive to more aggressively promote my portfolio site where the podcast will be prominently featured.

Concept Viability and Production Challenges:
A bi-weekly production schedule is ambitious but achievable and, I believe, the minimum frequency for a topical news podcast of any stripe. A length of 4 to 6 minutes with at least 4 rotating features (news headlines, commentary, interviews and topical songs), would be a flexible format that would prevent what I suspect is a frequent podcast-killing mistake: format rigidity that results in the producer growing bored, burdened and uninspired.

The obvious challenge with this concept is quality control: being consistently entertaining, with the added challenge of maintaining non-wince-provoking production values for the musical and interview components.

I undertake it while being fully mindful of the theatrical axiom: “Satire is what closes on Saturday night. “

Link to The Delecourte Report

(Creative Commons license on site)

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