“Hello and welcome to My brother, My brother and Me, an advice show for the modern era. I am your oldest brother, Justin McElroy.”
“I am your middle brother, Travis McElroy.”
“And I’m your sweet baby brother and 30 under 30, media luminary Griffin McElroy.”
These are the three wise brothers and hosts of the podcast “My Brother, My Brother and Me” (aka MBMBaM or Ma-Bim-Bam.)
MBMBaM is a comedy advice show where the McElroy brothers, Justin, Travis and Griffin, answer both audience-submitted questions and Yahoo questions, “turn[ing] them alchemy-like into wisdom.”
There are also several other segments interlaced into the program, such as Haunted Doll Watch (Justin reviews a haunted doll from eBay), Munch-Squad (Justin reads a wacky food related press release) and Farm Wisdom (the brothers take turns reading listener submitted wisdom), though these are few and far between.
With the first episode having been released on April 12 of 2010, these brothers have gone through a lot in eight years with two weddings, four children and several projects chronicled in the hour-long episodes, eventually becoming apart of The Maximum Fun Network.
“My Brother My Brother and Me” does not have an overarching plot which makes it, in my opinion, easier to binge overall. It’s just a fun little chuckle-fest you can have in the background while you write your finals paper.
When you’re done with those and you want to kick back and actually watch something, there is also a six-episode mini-series that is like the show, with a one question per episode format. Originally released on the now shutdown SeeSo network in September of 2016, the MBMBaM television show was filmed in the boys’ hometown of Huntington, West Virginia. Each episode focuses on one question, with the brothers running around town having fun and making jokes while they do stuff to find an answer to said question. Examples of their shenanigans include becoming the mayor for “like a minute,” calling the Knights Templar about joining and conducting a “Ranco” parade.
On occasion, they also have “guestperts” to talk about specific topics. Some guests include Lin-Manuel Miranda (Ep 193), Elizabeth Gilbert (Ep 210) and Jimmy Buffet (Ep 383). For the television show, they only have brothers as guests, notably Hank and John Green (Ep 4) and The Property Brothers (Ep 1). They also have their father, Clint McElroy, and for the last episode, Lin-Manuel Miranda narrates.
To Binge or Not to Binge:
In short, Yes. Here’s why.
There is very little effort that needs to go into listening to this show. It’s just a fun time-killer and has definitely made family car trips bearable. Listening to the McElroys goofing off and giving advice makes me look forward to Monday afternoons. All of the questions are never extremely serious, usually just uncommon, such as, “What do I do?” “There’s been a bike sitting outside of my apartment complex for three weeks now, what should I do?” or “Someone in my math class, took a whole lemon out of his backpack, began to peel it, then asked me for the time, before putting the half-peeled lemon back into his bag.” The Yahoo questions can be a little crazier. “What is your favorite wizard swear?” or “nightmare about a nut head …?”
Most of the time, the question leads to a story or shenanigan, probably both, but they usually answer the question. Every episode is a self-contained comedy hour that is a great time for most. With that being said, not everybody can get into the show, and that’s alright, but if you do fall in love with the show, why not binge it? I know I did. Twice.
The Best Episode:
It’s hard to say. Each episode is so varied and different, especially with 400+ episodes, but my personal top five are:
“Blast my Cache.” (Ep 126)
“Glass Shark” (Ep 215)
“The Ballad of Tit Liquid” (Ep 265)
“No Gods, No Kings, only McCheese” (Ep 315) and
“Bean Freak” (Ep 354)
I would suggest starting with episode 10 “Pluto Jesus vs The Sex Hydra.” This is when they start to get comfortable with the format, but once you get in the show, feel free to jump back to the first nine. As for the TV show, my favorite episode is Ep 2 “Resumes & Jamiroquai’s Dad.”
Where to Listen:
- iTunes / The Podcast app
- Google Play
- Maximum Fun.Org
- VRV.co (You do NOT need the premium version.)
5 out of 5
Similar shows: “Sawbones” (Podcast), “Monster Factory” (YouTube), “Jordan Jesse Go!” (Podcast) and “The Adventure Zone” (Podcast)
Language, sexual themes and minor drug references
~400 Episodes → ~1 hour each = 400+ hours.
(Roughly 16 days of nonstop listening, or over a year if you listen to one a day.)