STORY WRITTEN BY DUTCH GODSHALK
John Hodgman, best-selling author and host of the wildly popular “Judge John Hodgman” podcast, brought his “fake internet courtroom” to The Trocadero Theatre last night for an evening of oddball social justice.
In front of a packed house, Hodgman, shrouded in black judicial robes and a cowboy hat, spent roughly two hours ruling on the outlandish personal disputes of Philadelphia locals, including (but not limited):
- Whether or not a dog with dreadlocks should wear a raincoat;
- Where a beekeeping couple should build their marital hive;
- Whether a grown man should wear a Bush Gardens bucket hat in public;
- The best way to ride a triceratops.
Also featuring bailiff Jesse Thorn, musical guest Cynthia Hopkins, and expert witness Robert Hicks, director of Philadelphia’s Mütter Museum, the live episode of “Judge John Hodgman” was surprisingly multi-faceted, more like a variety show than an installment of the comedic mock-trial podcast.
Peppered with musical breaks (Hodgman and Hopkins’ ukulele rendition of The Handsome Family’s “So Much Wine” was pure Americana delight) as well as an interview with Hicks on his museum’s super-creepy medical oddities, the event was a highly improvised, bizarrely educational, and exceedingly charming experience.
The hilarious and talented “Judge John Hodgman” crew are now heading overseas for a series of shows at the London Podcast Festival, Sept. 22 to 26, where they will commence with banging gavels emphatically and punishing British audience members for various minor social crimes.
For more information on the “Judge John Hodgman” podcast, check out our Sept. 1 interview with the judge himself.