Robert Ashley's new podcast, A Life Well Wasted might be the best single gaming podcast I've ever listened to. I mean it. I don't mean this to denigrate all of us who have done it before and continue to do it. All those other gaming podcasts we love are still great.
But what Ashley has done here, to use a cliche I absolutely abhor, is..."take it to the next level." Here we have what has the makings of being the "This American Life" of gaming podcasts. Anyone who's ever listened to that NPR podcast knows that I mean this as the highest possible compliment, as "This American Life" is a must-listen, consistently brilliant piece of audio journalism that is always as entertaining as it is informative. "A Well Wasted Life" sounds very much like "This American Life", complete with appropriately-timed music edited in with the talking, and Ashley narrating and guiding the program with wit and intelligence like a deeper-voiced, stoned Ira Glass.
Ashley's debut show is about the death of EGM---and if you think you're sick of this topic by now, listen anyway, because he interviews tons of great people with all sorts of memories and insight unlike anything that's come out since that shitty day.
It's an astounding first episode. Ashley was always hilarious on the Brodeo. But you have to go back to his writing in the magazines and the website to realize that he had something this professional and high-quality in him.