Comedian and Nerdist ambassador Chris Hardwick is helping fans everywhere discover their "inner geek" this week with the help of YouTube's first annual Geek Week, and the host of the AMC shows Talking Dead (a live recap of The Walking Dead) and the brand-new Talking Bad (a recap of the final season of Breaking Bad) is giving ETonline his take on both hugely popular series, plus sharing his top picks for Geek Week!
Of Talking Bad, premiering on AMC this Sunday right after Breaking Bad, Chris says, "It'll probably be a little more retrospective than 'here's what happened each episode.' … [Breaking Bad creator and exec producer] Vince Gilligan is the first guest this weekend, and we're getting cast and other cool guests, and so it'll be a fun way to say goodbye to the show. It's hard to say goodbye to a show you love."
As for the highly anticipated fourth season of The Walking Dead, premiering October 13, Chris offers, "I'm excited about [new showrunner Scott Gimble coming on board] because he's a good guy and he's fantastic, and the titters that I'm hearing are that his episodes are -- the word 'insane' has been thrown around. The blessing and the curse of a show like Walking Dead is that when you start the show at 100, then every show has to build up, so they're constantly having to top what they've done previously, be it stories, or character arcs, or effects, or whatever, and they've managed to do that for the last few seasons. … They constantly have to keep upping the stakes, and so from what I'm hearing they're doing that. … People are genuinely excited."
A true fan of the apocalyptic zombie saga, Chris does not watch any episodes ahead of the day that they air, explaining, "I'm very strict about it. I don't want to know anything before I see it the day that we do the shows, because A) I don't like to carry it around B) I don't want to accidentally blow something out; you know, our show's live, and C) I think we've become kind of spoiled because we can binge-consume things, and remembering a time when you couldn't do that, it's sort of fun to get excited about something and build anticipation and look forward to it, rather than satisfy a whim when you feel like it." He adds, "I accidentally found out about a major character death last season and I had to sit with it for three months."
As for Geek Week, currently on YouTube, Chris observes, "I love those kind of social experiments where everybody gets a theme and you see how they're going to express that. … The lifeblood of YouTube is sharing … so the idea was to come together with a handful of likeminded channels to essentially create programming around stuff that we like, and share each other's audiences and turn it into a 'thing.'"
Two of his recommended videos up this week:
1) "We did these series of Grammar Corrections videos with CM Punk, he's a huge wrestler; he came on my podcast a couple months ago and it turned out he said I'm a grammar Nazi and the Internet infuriates me because there's so much bad grammar on it … He shot five of these and they were hilarious because of the rage -- he deconstructs their horrible grammar."
2) "We did this one that was like Choose Your Own Adventure, which was a collaboration of a bunch of other channels. You would start on one channel, and then at the end of the video you would get to choose what you wanted the character to do … and I think that was my favorite overall because that was a collaboration in the true sense of the word; we were basically sharing all of our channels to create this linear story. So I think that one's pretty fantastic."
Chris also hosts an entertaining podcast on his Nerdist.com that has featured a slew of celebrity guests, most recently with the likes of Michal C. Hall, Joss Whedon, Jeff Bridges, Rick Moranis, Joe Manganiello, Billy Crystal and Seth Rogen.
"Basically it's an excuse now to meet people that we’re huge fans of and hang out with them for an hour," says Chris, who always ends his podcasts with the cryptic, yet Zen-like mantra, Enjoy Your Burrito.
He adds of all the fun he and his comrades are having, "It kind of feels like someone's going to tell us we're not allowed to do that anymore."