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Dicktown's John Hodgman Says Posting Wordle Scores Is Like Whistling

On CNET's I'm So Obsessed podcast, Hodgman goes deep on his animated FXX show Dicktown.

Patrick Holland Managing Editor
Patrick Holland has been a phone reviewer for CNET since 2016. He is a former theater director who occasionally makes short films. Patrick has an eye for photography and a passion for everything mobile. He is a colorful raconteur who will guide you through the ever-changing, fast-paced world of phones, especially the iPhone and iOS. He used to co-host CNET's I'm So Obsessed podcast and interviewed guests like Jeff Goldblum, Alfre Woodard, Stephen Merchant, Sam Jay, Edgar Wright and Roy Wood Jr.
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  • Patrick's play The Cowboy is included in the Best American Short Plays 2011-12 anthology. He co-wrote and starred in the short film Baden Krunk that won the Best Wisconsin Short Film award at the Milwaukee Short Film Festival.
Patrick Holland
3 min read

The first thing you need to know about the FXX animated series Dicktown is that it's brimming with nonsense and ridiculousness. The show follows a former star boy detective turned less-impressive adult John Hunchman, played by writer, comic and podcast host John Hodgman. In each episode, Hunchman and his former high school archnemesis turned friend David Purefoy, played by comic and cartoonist David Rees, solve a mystery in their hometown of Richardsville, North Carolina, which is nicknamed Dicktown.


Along with David Rees, John Hodgman created and stars in the FXX animated series Dicktown.


The next thing you need to know about Dicktown is that the mysteries are as silly as they are satisfying. Each episode's title, like The Mystery of the Missing Pimento Cheese Recipe or The Mystery of the Marauding Mascot, reflects the rather straightforward task the two detectives must unravel. But it's Hunchman and Purefoy's approach and the inevitable obstacles they endure that make Dicktown a true gem.

The last thing you need to know about Dicktown is that it's made by Floyd Studios, which is behind the series Archer. Dicktown's animated style draws on '80s cartoons like Scooby-Doo, Inspector Gadget and Danger Mouse. I love that Hunchman and Purefoy are drawn to look similar to the actual Hodgman and Rees.

Lucky for me Hodgman was my guest on CNET's I'm So Obsessed podcast to discuss all things related to Dicktown. And as much as the show features Hodgman and Rees as a duo, there are some amazing people helping them out.

"It's not just me and David Rees. We've got Stephen Tobolowsky in here playing my dad. Kristen Schaal comes back in season 2 as Kendra the psychic. Jean Grae, my dear friend and an occasional guest bailiff and incredible polymathic artist, comes back as Monica cosplaying expert. Amy Sedaris is in this season. Jamie Lee Curtis is in this season," said Hodgman. "There's just an incredibly talented voice cast. Paul F. Tompkins and Janie Haddad Tompkins. We got to work with all of our friends, and they're also brilliant."

New episodes of Dicktown are out on Thursday nights on FXX, and you can watch the first season as well as any available episodes for season 2 on Hulu. Listen to my full interview with Hodgman in the podcast player at the top of this article. He talks not only about Dicktown but also his life as a podcast fake judge, what his former Daily Show character the Deranged Millionaire would be up to and how a lesson he learned from the boom mic operator on Apple's Mac and PC TV ads applies to Wordle.

"To me, it [Wordle] comes down to the insight that was afforded to me by the boom microphone operator on the set of the Apple ads. One day I was whistling between takes. I was whistling a wonderful tune, some kind of diddy. I whistle very well. And he said -- he came down between takes and he said, 'You know, John, the thing about whistling is the only person who enjoys whistling is the one who's whistling,'" said Hodgman. "It's especially true if it's your job to have me in your ears all day long. I think that sharing the Wordle score is a little bit like whistling. But the fact is everybody gets to whistle."

Subscribe to I'm So Obsessed on your favorite podcast app. In each episode, Connie Guglielmo or I catch up with an artist, actor or creator to learn about work, career and current obsessions.

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