Alistair Campbell and Rory Stewart are old news. What programmes woud Gary Lineker's Goalhanger Productions commission if human mortality were no object?
John Donne and Tupac Shakur interview up-and-coming wordsmiths over Mediterranean sharing plates. Only lasts for one series – the pair get on famously, but the wealth management ads don’t come close to compensating for the first-growth claret and Hennessy expenses.
Bill Buckley and Fernando Alonso discuss the moral decline of Western civilisation and troubleshoot listeners’ automotive problems. Hits the big time when the hosts change language to target the Spanish-speaking market, though Buckley has to be repeatedly talked out of inviting on Latin American military dictators as guests.
No Cap, Flat Cap
Matthew Goodwin and George Orwell tour the north of England, sampling local food and pointing out the region’s many points of superiority to the effete south. Production is slowed down by the pair’s frequent trips back to London to fulfil prestigious media commitments.
A Bloom of One’s Own
Lessons in horticulture with Virginia Woolf (in partnership with Freddie’s Flowers). Goes down a treat with London’s literary women and, in contrast to her haughty reputation, Woolf is a dream to work with: she even insists on buying all the flowers herself.
Thomas Edison and Jack Dorsey discuss the routines that power history’s most prominent inventors and CEOs. Gets slapped with a content warning by Spotify due to Edison’s insistence that humans need no more than four hours.
Waugh on Woke
Evelyn Waugh picks apart the latest exploits of the ludicrous leftie snowflakes – for about the first 10 minutes of each episode. This is followed by nearly two hours of in-depth, thoughtful discussion on Catholic theology. Dasha Nekrasova from Red Scare is a frequent guest.
An Ick Universally Acknowledged
Jane Austen tackles listeners’ dating and relationship conundrums. A mixed success: she refuses to address anything to do with premarital sex, but is so adept at decoding DM slides and emoji reactions that she soon sets up a Hinge profile-optimisation consultancy.
Famed mathematician Alan Turing is paired with ChatGPT hooked up to a speech generator. He spends most of the series talking quite happily with his eloquent, well-read, seemingly human co-host – until he asks about its favourite jokes. This prompts him to rush back to Bletchley Park with a jerry can of petrol and a box of matches, muttering about ‘stopping the machines while I still can.’
Jean-Paul Sartre and his wife Simone de Beauvoir discuss sex, society and literary salons. A vertiginous mix of delicious anecdote and bleak reflections on mortality (advertisers end up emailing the producer to check if the next episode ‘is one of those three-hour ones about death?’). Cancelled, in both senses, after an ill-advised ‘Age of Consent Special’.
Lawrence on Lawrence
Blockbuster podcast whereby DH Lawrence bullys TE Lawrence in increasingly amusing and inventive ways. Plagued by technical issues, with TE insisting on recording from a tent in the middle of the Arabian desert and DH frequently punching his microphone during fits of rage.
Let Them Bake Cake
Marie Antoinette and Gregg Wallace on the making, and eating, of pastries and puddings. Mostly the eating. Takes a turn when Marie Antoinette discovers TikTok and begins delivering lengthy on-air rants about the inability of the Versailles kitchen to produce adequately fluffy cloud bread.
Sad Boys Society
William Blake, Nick Drake, Drake and James Blake tackle men’s mental health, with meanderings into Christian mysticism, reviews of Moroccan hashish, reviews of various Nobu branches and complaints about the sub-bass capabilities of the studio speakers.
It’s Elementary, Babe
Arthur Conan Doyle and Coleen Rooney team up to investigate cold cases. Episodes include ‘Who murdered the Marchioness of Blandford’s valet at the Kurhaus spa, Baden-Baden, during the 1890 season?’, and ‘Who stole my fucking sunglasses at Garibaldi’s Bar, Baden-Baden, during the ’06 World Cup’?