'Small Town Murder': The True Crime Comedy Podcast Phenomenon
Two self-professed a**hole comedians tell meticulously researched true crime stories.
Murder can't be funny, can it? These two a**holes disagree and prove that a horrible story can be told with wit and levity whilst still respecting the victims. The comedy flows from the surreal madness of tiny towns, bungling police forces and most of all EVIL MURDERERS who deserve to be taken down a peg or nine.
Who is behind the show?
At the heart of the show is the unique bromance of the two presenters, James Pietragallo and Jimmie Whisman. One a towering New Yorker, the other the cream of American White Trash (and proud of it). Pietragallo researches and tells the tales with the dedication and skill of a homicide agent and Whisman is the voice of the audience, joining the listeners in hearing the horrors for the first time. Each week, the boys tell a story of a murder that took places in a Small Town. Most of their tales take place in the US but they have also been set in Canada, Australia and the UK.
Tiny towns are peculiar places and the boys realise this keenly. Jimmie and James rejoice is the nudnickery and white-trashery often overflowing in the towns. They paint vivid images of just how far-fetched life is in these secluded places and why the murders that take place in them are so intriguing.
- Santa Clause, Georgia where the streets are named after reindeer.
- Philips, Oklahoma named after Lou Diamond Philips.
- Golden, Colorado founded during the gold rush by a gold digger named Golden.
Once the stage is set, James begins the story. Some weeks it begins with a body, others they follow the life of a young man and track his development into a brutal serial killer.
- A Nurse inducing heart attacks in hundreds of elderly patients.
- A Cult leader forces his flock to torture a murder a member who tried to escape.
- A wealthy young girl kills her parents for disapproving of her criminal boyfriend.
The unqualified and inexperienced police investigators are ripe for comedy in these small towns. But sometimes there is genius there as well.
- A suspect confesses after police pretended to do a lie detector test using a photocopier.
- Police allow a murder suspect to keep his rifle while he shows them where he buried his wife.
- After a boy’s disappearance, an entire town is told to search their own houses for him. One man chose not to look, that man was the chief of police. The bones were found in his sons’ room over a decade later.
Once the murderer has been apprehended, it’s time for trial and judgement. The Jimmy's delight in the idiocy and incompetence of the criminals and their lawyers.
- A lawyer citing 'White Trash Subculture' as a mitigating factor for their client’s crime.
- A murderous farmer who wears overalls to his own court case.
- A killer landlord whose final words to the court were from a Celine Dion song.
The sentences vary from decades in prison to the death penalty. Murderers being brought to justice is the perfect opportunity for two comedians to rip into them.
- A death row inmate whose last meal was a pizza and a raw onion.
- A murderer sentenced to over two centuries in prison.
- A serial killer called the Mad Slasher complaining that he doesn’t like his nickname.
Small Town Murder has carved out a niche for those fans of true crime who are fed up of deadpan recounting of grim stories of mutilation and horror. The comedy allows them to share awful stories in a far more palatable and enjoyable fashion.
This is the future of true crime and you should join the Jimmy's on their next adventure.
If you're in the US over the winter, you are a lucky so-and-so because Small Town Murder is touring the country so you can see the Jimmy's tearing it up right in front of you. (Just google it for ticket details.)
Where to Listen
The boys can be found on iTunes, Spotify, Podcast Addict and almost anywhere else that podcasts are found.