Phil Plait (aka Bad Astronomer) took approximately ten minutes to drop some science (and the mic) on the “Paul and Storm Talk About Some Stuff for Five to Ten Minutes (on Average)” panel, Friday at 11:30 AM in the Hilton Grand Ballroom East. Recording their podcast of the same name in front of a live Dragon Con audience, Storm (of Paul and Storm) threw out the first topic, stating his theory that we are living in the third great age of American beards. Plait quickly jumped in, labeling Storm’s statement as a hypothesis, not a theory. Lucky Yates and Molly Lewis also participated in the podcast. Paul and Storm devised random topics and the panelists weighed in as they desired.
The conversation about the third great age of American beards included a listing of what the previous great ages were. According to Storm, the first great age was during the American Civil War era where, “Suddenly we went from powdered wigs to beards. There was nothing in between.” The second great age was defined to occur during the beatnik era in the1950s and 1960s.
The panelists then tried to decide what exactly had kicked off the first great age. An audience member suggested that Will Riker’s beard in Star Trek: The Next Generation may have been the catalyst. Plait and Storm disagreed, suggesting that Riker was ahead of his time. Lewis suggested that Zach Galifianakis may have been the early progenitor of the age. Yates noted that Galifianakis hosted a short-lived talk show on VH-1 and was beardless during that time, before the beard frenzy. Paul quipped that Beard Frenzy should be the name of his and Storm’s ZZ Top cover band. (A reference to their ongoing cover band meme.)
After addressing a few more random topics, Storm asked the panelists to respond to some, “Who would win?” questions.
For instance, if The Hulk and Thing from Fantastic Four were artists, who would get more money for their art in a show? While the opinions wildly shifted, in the end the prevailing feeling was that buyers would pay more for art from The Hulk.
Another battle scenario asked, “Who would win in a fight between Cartoon Mr. T and an asteroid?” Yates then showcased his voice acting talent by providing a voice for the asteroid. Storm played his part as the voice of Cartoon Mr. T.
Paul is already drawing up the contract in his head for the two of them to do the Cartoon Mr. T Versus Asteroid podcast, as Lewis suggested.
The light banter kept the audience laughing throughout the hour, though some of Paul’s jokes seemed to either go over the audience’s head or land a little flat. Naturally, Paul concluded that It Was Funnier in My Head would be the perfect name for his Paul and Storm cover band.