Blank Check with Griffin and David Wiki

Podcast News is a miniseries focusing on the films of James L. Brooks. It is most definitely NOT called As Pod As It Casts.


James L. Brooks was a television writer with a terrific run of critical success in that medium, creating shows like "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and "Taxi." Finally in the early 80's, with virtually no prior experience on a movie set, "Canyon Jim" directed his first film Terms of Endearment which he also wrote and produced.

I'll say that again so it sinks in: Terms of Endearment was his first time directing a movie. Whoa. Somehow this cancer drama made crazy money, won award after award, and earned him blank check director status practically right out of the gate.

So how did it happen? How did he invent a visual style practically sui generis with his very first film directing job? And more importantly, how did he use the blank check that he earned so quickly? He might have made a masterpiece his second time out, is what he did. Then he went off the rails so suddenly, completely, and spectacularly that #TheTwoFriends needed two episodes to talk about that disaster. He picked up the pieces for a bit but then dove right off the track again. What is going on here?

He often took several years between directing... how did that affect the end results? His movies are mostly trying to be character studies, diving in deep for personal drama based in specific sociological situations. Those kinds of stories have a shelf life, seemingly, so did he find ways to mitigate that - or did he lose his way as the world evolved around him? How did the most expensive rom-com budget ever, for How Do You Know, ever get approved?

Regardless of what Griffin and David discover in terms of the wax and wane of his movie career, Brooks shepherded "The Simpsons" onto TV and into the record books with 27 seasons and counting. So, you know, he'll always have that.

This miniseries is preceded by the Podship Casters miniseries on the Hollywood films of Paul Verhoeven. It is followed by The Podcastibles miniseries on the films of Brad Bird.


# Title Audio Guest(s) Blank Check? Length Date
153 Terms of Endearment ๐Ÿ”Š Valorie Curry The Guarantor 2:09 3/18/2018
154 Broadcast News ๐Ÿ”Š Katey Rich Yes 1:57 3/25/2018
157 I'll Do Anything ๐Ÿ”Š Esther Zuckerman Yes 1:56 4/8/2018
158 I'll Do Anything: The Musical Cut ๐Ÿ”Š 0:59 4/12/2018
159 As Good As It Gets ๐Ÿ”Š Chris Gethard Yes 2:20 4/15/2018
160 Spanglish ๐Ÿ”Š Richard Lawson Yes 2:11 4/22/2018
161 How Do You Know ๐Ÿ”Š Yes 1:40 4/29/2018

Ranking His Filmography[]

  • After the conclusion of the miniseries, the blankies' ranking order was compiled from the Reddit voting thread found on the r/Blankies sub-reddit. As you can see, with a short list there's not a lot of room for major differences of opinion. That is, except for...
  • The bootleg musical cut of I'll Do Anything was included though it is unavailable to watch for the majority of blankies. It doesn't matter too much, since those who saw it and ranked it anywhere other than last seemed to do so because its awfulness seemed to cross over into novelty and fascination. A true train wreck.
Rank Griffin David blankies
1 Broadcast News Broadcast News Broadcast News
2 Terms of Endearment Terms of Endearment Terms of Endearment
3 As Good As It Gets As Good As It Gets As Good As It Gets
4 I'll Do Anything How Do You Know How Do You Know
5 How Do You Know I'll Do Anything Spanglish
6 Spanglish Spanglish I'll Do Anything
666 I'll Do Anything (musical cut) I'll Do Anything (musical cut) I'll Do Anything (musical cut)