Introducing IWU’s podcast “Slightly Underwhelming”

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Slightly Underwhelming is Illinois Wesleyan’s first podcast, a show that takes a satirical look at current events happening on campus and in pop culture, powered by the Argus newspaper. 

Since our formation last year, we have released 10 episodes, producing over 300 minutes of content that have featured more than 40 students from different backgrounds on campus. 

Past episodes have included interviews with the president and vice-president of student senate, comedy sets from Illinois Wesleyan’s improv troupe JM7, a true-crime parody, and discussion based on current events on campus

Slightly Underwhelming has provided comedic yet heartfelt entertainment to a niche community, and given students who normally remain quiet a chance to speak and be heard in a new medium on campus. 

We are thrilled about what we’ve accomplished in our brief existence, and our goal to keep growing and producing better and better content.

What started as a team of two clueless students just over a year ago, has grown exponentially into a team of eight writers, our returning host, our producer, and most importantly, a new Sound Guy™. 

“This is my favorite thing I’m involved in on campus- I love the people, the writing process and what we get to produce together” Slightly Underwhelming founder, Jon Recchia, said.

This year’s process has consisted of Wednesday night brainstorming sessions, focusing on current events, holidays, and happenings around campus. 

Most times, our brainstorming sessions can be heard from outside our usual classroom, as we laugh too hard at our own corny jokes. 

Some of our episodes are scripted by the writing staff, while other segments are improvised by guiding discussions with a few prompts. 

The whole writing process is somewhat casual, and the group this year has been consistent in bringing ideas to the table to form semi-coherent episodes, which are then released two weeks later. 

Once all of this is accomplished we record the episode.. 

The recording process itself is electric, and usually takes place on Thursday nights. 

We stack microphones on a pile of books in someone’s dorm room, perch ourselves in uncomfortable chairs like vultures over a carcass and hope for the best as our incoherent ramblings begin. 

It usually turns out halfway decent thanks to Sound Man™ using his mystical powers of editing to allow us to sound coherent.

The Slightly Underwhelming schedule for when we meet is pretty flexible, and we write scripts on our own time, usually being about one hour before we start recording. 

We try and get ideas from everyone involved. One of our new writers, Paige McLaughlin, said “I appreciate these people taking a chance on me […] This podcast gives me a place to be an awkward, little nerd who’s literally never done something like this before, and I love it.” 

As universities begin to adapt to the growing world of podcasts, it’s important that Illinois Wesleyan is following suit. 

This podcast is a testament to the entrepreneurial spirit of our students, and how our school supports new opportunities to not only expand our artwork but ourselves in the process.

If you’ve ever wondered what tiks your tok, wanted to discuss the horse problem or assert exactly what will happen when Nick Cage actually steals the Declaration of Independence, drop by for a brainstorming session, SFH 110 at 6 pm on Wednesdays. 

Interested in being a guest? Reach out to Jonathan Recchia, at [email protected] 

Most importantly, listen to us anywhere you get your podcasts, by searching “Slightly Underwhelming”- look for the forgettable logo with the big circle.