Podcast Idea: Smellovision
A podcast about the organ that sticks out of the middle of your face.
Description: Close your eyes. Block out the sounds around you. Take a deep breath. What do you smell? Nothing? Try harder. There are scents all around you, and it’s time we tried to sniff them all out. Every episode of Smellovision would explore some aspect around scent, how we sense it, why we manipulate it, and why it exists in the first place. What actually are pheromones? How do spaces use smell to secretly manipulate us? Who invented deodorant (and does it actually cause cancer)? Why don’t we have smellovision yet? How do you train a sniffer dog? Why does poop smell bad? How did skunks evolve their smell-attack?
Hosts: Rachel Herz*, smell researcher and author & Eva Longoria*, celebrity and STEM advocate. (Fun fact, Longoria wrote her masters thesis on the barriers facing Latina students entering STEM)
Executive Producer: Michael J. Ritchie **
Sample Episode 1: Jason Sudeikis* can’t smell. He was born with congenital anosmia, a condition that renders a person’s schnoz non-functional. The condition isn’t all that rare, about 1 in 10,000 people have it. And on this episode, Rachel & Eva take Sudeikis on a tour of his own nose and brain to explore what it’s like to live without a sniffer, and how something like anosmia happens.
Sample Episode 2: Joy Milne* smells too much. She was born with hypersomia, the opposite of Sudeikis’s problem — her nose works too well. She has to avoid the grocery store aisles with soap and makeup. In fact, Milne might be able to detect the scent of everything from Alzheimers to cancer. But how legit is “super smelling” really? Rachel & Eva try to understand what it’s like to live with an extraordinary nose, and how helpful people like Milne can actually be to science.
Sample Episode 3: What does Mariah Carey smell like? According to reviews of her perfume “M,” not great. "M” is “"the nastiest, cheapest smelling perfume you have ever smelled,” one reviewer wrote. But how does a celebrity decide what they want their signature perfume scent to be? On this episode, Rachel & Eva tag along with Chrissy Teigen* as she creates her own celebrity perfume.
Audience: People who are curious about the world around them, but also like to hear poop jokes and celebrities trying to sniff gross stuff.
Merch idea: Every season, Smellovision produces a special scratch-and-sniff booklet to go along with the episodes. Smell along as you listen! A true trans-media experience.
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* Hosts and guests have not signed on in any way. I’m making stuff up here!
** This newsletter is for fun. Ideas belong to their initial creator, credited here as Executive Producer. Don’t be a dick and don’t steal these ideas. If you love a show, and really want to get it made, get in touch with the person who came up with it.
Long live independent podcasts. Long live bad ideas.