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“The McElroy brothers are not experts and their advice should never be followed,” is how the podcast, My Brother, My Brother, and Me, opens every episode. I was introduced to the McElroy family’s content through watching Griffin McElroy's YouTube videos. Little did I know that would lead me to discovering My Brother, My Brother, and Me, or MBMBAM. I soon found out that the McElroy brothers had a large array of podcasts on various topics, one of the most famous ones being MBMBAM.
The podcast is an “advice” show. The boys take questions sent in from users or questions that were submitted to Yahoo! Answers and answer them. Some of the topics they have tackled are: “Why do so many people buy Lunchables?” “How do you tell someone they are bad at Yu-Gi-Oh?” and “Do Sonic characters have last names?” The brothers offer their insights on the questions, and the answers are hilarious and rarely serious. I haven't laughed this hard in a while. Fair warning, the podcast has swearing and some mature themes, as the intro says, “This show is not for kids, which I mention only so the babies out there will know how cool they are for listening.”
Some of the other regular bits on the show are “Munch Squad,” “The Money Zone,” and “Haunted Doll Watch.” “Munch Squad” is a bit where the boys talk about a press release from a fast food company promoting their products. This segment features in-depth conversations on topics such as McDonald's Artisan Sandwiches and Applebee's Topped and Loaded specials. “The Money Zone” features the boys promoting sponsors in a strangely entertaining and charming way. They also read Jumbotron messages, which are messages that listeners pay to have the boys read out loud on the show. One of the running jokes on the show is that the brothers are always comically late to deliver “Happy Birthday” messages. “Haunted Doll Watch” is a segment where the brothers read out listings for haunted dolls for sale online. They once read a listing where the seller detailed how they could feel the paranormal energy of the doll because they were sensitive.
The McElroy brothers have cultivated a unique comedy podcast, but who are they? “Your Oldest Brother”, Justin McElroy is an editor at the website Polygon and one of the three hosts of MBMBAM. He is known for originating “Munch Squad” and his obsession with Jimmy Buffett. He is also the “canary in the mine” for children's movies, since he sees most of them in the theaters with his daughter. He recently shared a passionately negative review about The Emoji Movie and was so fond of Trolls that he started to campaign for his brothers and himself to be in the sequel to Trolls. He is featured in Sawbones, a podcast where Dr. Sydnee McElroy and Justin talk about medical history, and a video game review podcast with Polygon called Quality Control. “Your Middlest Brother,” Travis McElroy, is recognizable by his beard and painted nails. He started "Sad Libs," a bit where Travis reads a Mad Libs while his brothers yell at him. He hosts a podcast with his wife, Teresa, called Schmanners where they discuss everyday etiquette. Other notable podcasts that feature him are Trends Like These, Interrobang with Travis and Tybee, and Surprisingly Nice. “Your Sweet Baby Brother,” Griffin McElroy, is a founding editor at Polygon. He was named one of Forbes “30 under 30 Media Luminaries” in 2016. He is a part of some of Polygon’s popular YouTube series’. For example, Griffin and Justin host Monster Factory, a show where they play with the character creation settings in video games until they come up with the most ridiculous-looking character possible. Griffin and Nick Robinson host a podcast called Cool Games.Inc, where they create theoretical video games, and he also created a fancast about The Bachelor with his wife, Rachel. Griffin is also the DM for The Adventure Zone, a podcast where the three brothers and their father, Clint McElroy, play a Dungeons and Dragons campaign.
With their powers combined, they created a podcast for giving people bad advice, and there is a great appeal to the comedy of My Brother, My Brother, and Me that has nothing to do with getting helpful advice. The hilarity of the show doesn’t stem off of stereotypes or making fun of others. In fact, the tone of the podcast gives off a friendly vibe, as the brothers try to make sure their content is inclusive and open to everybody. The comedy is simply created by the brothers being silly and handing out bizarre suggestions to funny questions. This take on comedy is refreshing and leaves the listener in a good mood. The popularity of the McElroy brothers has spread far and wide. They hold popular live shows from Seattle to Boston where they take audience questions. They recently filmed the first season of ‘My Brother, My Brother, and Me’ the TV show, on Seeso. It’s easy to see why the McElroys have been creating successful content once you start listening to the podcast. I highly recommend My Brother, My Brother, and Me to everybody. You can find MBMBAM and the McElroy brothers’ other podcasts at mcelroyshows.com.
MBMBAM always ends with a question that the audience can ponder on until next time. I would like to end this with one of my favorite ending questions, “Can I hire someone to do vape tricks at my son’s birthday party?”