Spoon, the world’s leading audio live stream platform, has announced a new interactive horror talk show, Down in the Basement with Graham Skipper, that goes live this Wednesday, December 16th at 8 PM PT!
The Spoon Original program aims to set itself apart from other genre shows by not only having an insider at the helm but by being completely interactive. Graham Skipper is a well-known triple threat actor, director, and screenwriter within the industry who plans on having the audience participate in an ever-changing slew of trivia, games, celebrity interviews, and exclusive behind-the-scenes information.
Skipper knew what he wanted the moment Spoon approached him. “My vision for this show is that it’s not only for insiders and superfans – it’s for them too, yes, but I also want to be a welcoming place for the casual fan who may know they like these movies but haven’t yet delved deeper. It’s a gateway into horror – a wild, communal listening experience, where part of the fun is interacting with other members of the genre community and me, including celebrities and professionals.”
“I think more than anything this show exemplifies what our brand represents. We are tearing down the barriers between audience and creator in real-time.”Fernando Pizarro, Vice President of North America for Spoon
The show is being developed by Spoon’s Showrunner and veteran genre screenwriter and producer Clint Sears. “I joined Spoon because I truly think this is the future. Our interactive platform is going to be the next wave of entertainment and fan engagement, and I couldn’t think of anyone better to help lead the charge than Graham. He’s just a crazy loveable, super fun, and intelligent guy who oozes charm. He not only embodies everything you look for in a host, but he’s just someone you want to spend time with, which is pretty much how I think we settled on Graham’s title, ‘Down In the Basement.’ More than anything, this is going to be a fun weekly hangout with like-minded people.”
Apparently, Hollywood agrees, the guest roster already includes Saw helmer Darren Lynn Bousman, blockbuster screenwriter C. Robert Cargill (Sinister, Dr Strange) actress, writer and director Brea Grant (Heroes, Dexter, 12 Hour Shift), fan-favorite George Wendt (Cheers, Tales from the Crypt, The Twilight Zone, Masters of Horror) as well as director Joe Begos (Bliss, VFW) just to name a few. The guests will jump in and out and rotate as often as the segments.
Graham said he wanted each show to feel fresh and new and not grow stale with a strict format. He’s constantly thinking about exciting new ways to try and engage his audience. He breaks into laughter as he explains, “occasionally we could even have an additional live hour or two where, say, I go visit a haunted location in the real world and report everything that I’m experiencing… Oh God why did I suggest this?”
Graham Skipper Talks Horror and Down in the Basement
Wealth of Geeks chatted with Graham Skipper about what fans of the horror genre can anticipate from Down in the Basement.
Maggie Lovitt (ML): You have been in several horror films and you even wrote and directed the horror film Sequence Break last year. What is it about the horror genre that has captured your interest?
Graham Skipper (GS): When I was a kid, probably 10 or 11 years old, I watched The Exorcist for the first time. It absolutely wrecked me, scared the hell out of me. But that night, as I lay awake terrified that a demon was going to possess me, and haunted by the images I'd seen on screen, I was battling with the knowledge that a director, and actors, and a writer, that they had put all of this together with the express purpose of scaring me. And it had worked!
So how could I reconcile being so afraid with also knowing that it was all fake? That started me on a path of dissecting horror films, finding ones that really scared me and asking myself “why?” “How did they do that?” And that gave me an appreciation for what horror was capable of, and the artistry involved. I think, too, that horror is the one genre that really affects people in a visceral way, for life! I don't often think about Shakespeare In Love, or The English Patient, but I think about Jaws every time I see the ocean. There's power in that.
I also discovered early on that horror could be fun! And cathartic! There's a lot that horror does for me that other genres often don't quite achieve, and so I find it endlessly fascinating to continue to explore horror and all of its intricacies.
ML: If you had to choose just five horror films to watch for the rest of your life, which five would you choose?
GS: This list probably changes daily, but I'd have to say: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre ('74), Evil Dead II, Alien, Re-Animator, [and] The Thing.
ML: How did Down in the Basement come into existence?
GS: Clint Sears with Spoon reached out to me with the idea of doing a weekly horror show, and explained about all the possibilities that Spoon provided in terms of interactivity, and it seemed like such a fun idea and a great way for horror fans to really communicate with each other in a way that other platforms don't necessarily allow.
We brainstormed for all of five minutes before we realized we had a show, and now here we are, a couple weeks later, about to launch! It was really an example of things falling into place serendipitously, and two concepts converging seamlessly into something new and exciting.
ML: What are some of your plans for taking full advantage of the interactive aspect of the show?
GS: The overall concept of this show is to be a platform for horror fans to get together and talk about horror live, with one another. So for example, I'll start every show talking about what types of horror I've been consuming, perhaps reviewing new releases, or just discussing a horror novel I'm revisiting this month, and the floor is open for everyone listening to chime in with what they thought of whatever it is I'm talking about, or perhaps offering up recommendations to me and to the others of something fun that maybe we haven't heard of yet.
We'll also have trivia contests where people can try to answer to win prizes, or when we have some of our guests on, people can really have a dialogue through the chat with that guest, asking them questions that perhaps wouldn't have gotten answered in a traditional Q&A, or that people don't have time for in a Con setting.
The possibilities are endless, and we're constantly coming up with new, fun ways for the audience to interact with me, our guests, and each other. Every show will be different and unpredictable for that reason. The listeners really will drive the discussion as much as I do,
ML: You have an incredible list of upcoming horror-related guests, who would be a dream guest to have on a future episode?
GS: Oh gosh, I could give you a list of fifty dream guests (some of whom are already confirmed!). I suppose top tier for me would be Clive Barker, Stephen King, and John Carpenter – all absolute heroes of mine.
ML: P.S. I know in the press release you joked about doing a live stream at a haunted location. Please do this on Halloween! I could suggest over a dozen haunted locations for you to visit.
GS: Please suggest away! I'm totally serious about wanting to do this!
To take part in the weekly live stream, audience members can download the Spoon app spoonrad.io/basement and tune into “Down in the Basement with Graham Skipper” Wednesdays at 8 p.m. P.T. starting December 16th.
Listeners can also find a streamlined version of the show after the fact, distributed anywhere podcasts are available, including Apple Podcasts and Spotify. Be sure to send Graham recommendations for haunted locations over on Twitter!
Maggie Lovitt is a writer at Wealth of Geeks where she covers her favorite topics: Star Wars and pop culture nerdery.
In her free time, she is also a novelist, screenwriter, actor, and member of the Screen Actors Guild.