Helen Hong

Ep. 48: Go Fact Yourself with Jenny Jaffe & Jim Rash

| 0 comments
Dr. David Kersey, J. Keith van Straaten, Jim Rash, Helen Hong, Jenny Jaffe
Guests: 
Jenny Jaffe & Jim Rash
Guests: 
Dr. David Kersey & Jonathan Lynn

Mysteries will be solved and species saved on this episode of Go Fact Yourself!

Jenny Jaffe is a comedy writer who grew up with an obsession for 90’s Nickelodeon animated shows. Her career has now come full circle: she’s landed a gig to writing for the upcoming version of "Rugrats!" She’ll tell us about that and some of her other obsessions that haven’t been a part of her work.. yet.

Jenny will take on actor/writer Jim Rash. Jim is a pretty accomplished guy. He’s known for his role as Dean Craig Pelton on NBC’s "Community." He’s also won an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for the film The Descendants. But in spite of his success, he’s still not above searching for some quality advice on Instagram… even if he has trouble following it. You can hear Jim now as the voice of Gyro Gearloose on the new version "DuckTales."

This week’s trivia topics include moisturizing, basket weaving and cuddly critters.

This episode is sponsored by Fake Radio: America’s premier old-time-radio comedy troupe. To find out more about their show and how to attend their live performances, visit fakeradio.net/gofactyourself.

What’s the Difference: It puts the lotion in the basket

What’s the difference between lotion and ointment?

What’s the difference between rattan and wicker?

Areas of Expertise

Jenny Jaffe: 90’s Disney movies, anxiety disorders and phobias, and pandas

Jim Rash: Sid and Marty Krofft shows, The movie Clue, and giving advice to others that he doesn’t take.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Jim Rash and Jenny Jaffe

Jenny Jaffe
Jim Rash

With guest experts:


Dr. David Kersey and Jenny Jaffe

Dr. David Kersey, professor of veterinary sciences and giant panda reproduction expert.

Jonathan Lynn, director of the film Clue.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.

Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.
Go to gofactyourpod.com for information and tickets to the next recording of Go Fact Yourself!

Ep. 47: Go Fact Yourself with Adam Conover & Jill-Michele Melean

| 0 comments
Jeff Ryan, Helen Hong, Adam Conover, J. Keith van Straaten, Jill-Michele Melean, Shauna Cross
Guests: 
Adam Conover & Jill-Michele Melean
Guests: 
Shauna Cross & Jeff Ryan

This week on Go Fact Yourself, it’s not just a game of trivia: it’s a game of hardcore roller derby AND a game of Super Mario!

You probably know Adam Conover from his TruTV show, "Adam Ruins Everything," where he uncovers the complicated, and often problematic, backstories behind topics like voting, football, Hawaii and more. He’ll also tell us about his own complicated backstory: as the only member of his family without a PhD. Adam can also be heard on the podcast "Factually!".

Adam’s opponent is comedian and writer Jill-Michele Melean. She was the first (and last) Latina cast member on “MADtv.” She was known for her celebrity impressions, most notably for Britney Spears and Drew Berrymore. And don’t worry… she’s happy to demonstrate. Jill-Michele can be seen in her stand up special "White/Latina" on Amazon Prime.

The guests will also discuss topics like clean eating, public transportation and the value of tasteful plastic surgery.

This episode is sponsored by Trivia Con, happening April 3-5, 2020 in Las Vegas.

What’s the Difference: Clang, clang, clang

What’s the difference between a bell and a chime?

What’s the difference between a tram and a trolley?

Areas of Expertise

Adam Conover: Western philosophy, the TV show "Succession" and the history of the Nintendo video-game character, Mario.

Jill Michele-Melean: Eating clean, being the best aunt ever, everything Drew Barrymore.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong
Adam Conover
Jill-Michele Melean

With guest experts:


Jill-Michele Melean and Shauna Cross

Shauna Cross, novelist, screenwriter and roller derby athlete.


Jeff Ryan and Adam Conover

Jeff Ryan, author of Super Mario: How Nintendo Conquered America.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at the The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.

Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.
Go to gofactyourpod.com for information and tickets to the next recording of Go Fact Yourself!

Ep. 46: Go Fact Yourself with Quinn Cummings & Greg Behrendt

| 0 comments
Dean Torrence, J. Keith van Straaten, Greg Behrendt, Helen Hong, Quinn Cummings, Mike Hollingsworth
Guests: 
Quinn Cummings & Greg Behrendt
Guests: 
Mike Hollingsworth & Dean Torrence

Whether you’re in the mood to surf some waves or binge some TV, this episode of Go Fact Yourself is for you!

As an actor, Quinn Cummings saw success at an early age. She was nominated for an Oscar for her role in the film The Goodbye Girl. It was a great experience, but one that put a bit of a strain on her relationship with her mother… and her hair. She’ll explain. Quinn can be heard on the podcast "Quinn Cummings Gives Bad Advice".

Like Quinn, Greg Behrendt also has experience giving others advice, especially with relationships. He’s written several books about love, including He’s Just Not That Into You and serves as a private life coach. What exactly are his qualifications? Just a 30-year comedy career, multiple books on the New York Times bestseller list and the fact that he survived cancer (twice).

The guests will compete to answer trivia questions about surf music, animated Netflix shows and their respective expertise on cats and dogs.

This episode is sponsored by Spencer Marks’ new science-fiction novel Living History. Go to livinghistorynovel.com and enter the promo code "HELEN" to purchase the book for a discount and to have it personally autographed.

What’s the Difference: wasted

What’s the difference between liquor and liqueur?

What’s the difference between trash and garbage?

Areas of Expertise

Quinn Cummings: High fashion, the Netflix series "Bojack Horseman" and domestic cats.

Greg Behrendt: Surf music, dog shows and Dots candy

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong
Quinn Cummings
Greg Behrendt

With guest experts:


Quinn Cummings and Mike Hollingsworth

Mike Hollingsworth, Emmy-nominated producer and supervising director of "Bojack Horseman."


Dean Torrence and Greg Behrendt

Dean Torrence, one half of the surf-music duo Jan and Dean.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at the Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan theater at The Center For Inquiry in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.

Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.
Go to gofactyourpod.com for information and tickets to the next recording of Go Fact Yourself!

Ep. 45: Go Fact Yourself with Peter Sagal & Rebecca Makkai

| 0 comments
Bob Schwartz, Helen Hong, Peter Sagal, J. Keith van Straaten, Rebecca Makkai
Guests: 
Peter Sagal & Rebecca Makkai
Guests: 
Gov. Madeleine May Kunin & Bob Schwartz

It’s another helping of Go Fact Yourself in Chicago, now more delicious and savory than ever!

Peter Sagal is the host of the NPR program "Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me!" But his experience with trivia shows goes all the way back to when he was a contestant on “Jeopardy”… and quickly found himself in the negative dollars. That doesn’t mean he’s bad at trivia; he’s just bad at pressing buttons. He’ll tell us about that and why he’s so dedicated to disrupting the narrative of Chicago deep-dish pizza.

Opposite Peter is author Rebecca Makkai. Her book The Great Believers earned her the distinction of being a finalist for the Pulitzer prize. It’s a truly special accomplishment -- but she had an even bigger dream as a child: teaching dogs how to talk.

The guests will discuss the local food scene, whether or not a hot dog is a sandwich and, yes, a lot of discussion about the windy city.

What’s the Difference: The Windy City

What’s the difference between a hurricane and a typhoon?

What’s the difference between a tornado watch and a tornado warning?

Areas of Expertise

Peter Sagal: Chicago food culture, James Cameron movies and running

Rebecca Makkai: The film Clue, the state of Vermont and the furnace girl murder of Lake Bluff, Illinois

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Peter Sagal and Rebecca Makkai

Peter Sagal
Rebecca Makkai

With guest experts:

Gov. Madeleine May Kunin, author, ambassador and three-term governor of Vermont.


Peter Sagal and Bob Schwartz

Bob Schwartz, Senior Vice President of Vienna Beef and author of the book Never Put Ketchup on a Hot Dog.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at Sleeping Village in Chicago.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Come to our next live tapings in Los Angeles on Sunday, October 13 -- Go to gofactyourpod.com for FREE tickets!

Jordan, Jesse, Go! Episode 603: River Rat with Helen Hong

| 0 comments
Guests: 
Helen Hong

Helen Hong (Go Fact Yourself podcast) joins Jordan and Jesse for a discussion of Helen's White Claw withdrawal and how it led to her boozy night at the Sound of Music Singalong at the Hollywood Bowl, Jesse's all-time favorite food and beverage luxury upgrade, and Jordan's truly epic quest to Bakersfield to fulfill his longtime dream of tubing down a river.

Ep. 44: Go Fact Yourself with Bill Kurtis & Sarah Spain

| 0 comments
John Ullinskey, Helen Hong, Bill Kurtis, J. Keith van Straaten, Sarah Spain
Guests: 
Bill Kurtis & Sarah Spain
Guests: 
Jill Sweeney & John Ullinskey

It’s the first episode of Go Fact Yourself from Chicago!

Two-time Peabody Award winner Bill Kurtis is a news anchor with one of the most famous voices in television and radio. You may have heard him as the scorekeeper for the program "Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me!", but he’s also known for his narration in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. He’ll explain how that role changed his life forever and share other stories from his extensive career.

Bill will compete with his fellow broadcaster and fellow Peabody Award winner Sarah Spain, host and contributor for ESPN. She’s often seen on the sports debate show "Around the Horn." She’ll tell us how she crafts an effective argument on the show and how she’s battling the negativity that comes with being a woman in the sports industry. Also, doggies!

The guests will answer questions about war veterans, improv comedy characters and the windy city.

What’s the Difference: Cubs & White Sox

What’s the difference between a Cub Scout and a Boy Scout?

What’s the difference between stitching and darning?

Areas of Expertise

Bill Kurtis: Frank Sinatra’s big band music, World War II in Okinawa and the prairie

Sarah Spain: Rescue dogs, 90’s "Saturday Night Live" characters and grammar.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Bill Kurtis & Sarah Spain

Bill Kurtis
Sarah Spain

With guest experts:

Julia Sweeney, actor and comedian who’s appeared in four seasons of "Saturday Night Live."


John Ullinskey & Bill Kurtis

John Ullinskey, WWII veteran who served aboard the USS Arikara and participated in the D-Day Invasion and the Battle of Okinawa

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at Sleeping Village in Chicago.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Ep. 43: Go Fact Yourself with Jena Friedman & Jack O’Brien

| 0 comments
Tracy Newman, Jena Friedman, J. Keith van Straaten, Jack O'Brien, Phyllis Katz, Helen Hong, Carl Gottlieb
Guests: 
Jack O'Brien & Jena Friedman
Guests: 
Tracy Newman, Phyllis Katz and Carl Gottlieb

This episode of Go Fact Yourself features quick wits and facts about hit flicks!

Jena Friedman is a comedian and longtime contributor to television, perhaps her best known work was as a producer on "The Daily Show." She’ll talk about how she was so dedicated to her work on the show that she was willing to risk her life if it meant getting the shot that she needed. Jena’s new series "Soft Focus" is on Adult Swim.

Jena’s opponent is Jack O’Brien, co-host of "The Daily Zeitgeist" podcast. Before that, he was the co-founder of Cracked.com. How did he turn the website into such a success? Well, he decided to take everything that worked about the original Cracked magazine… and completely ignore it. He’ll explain.

The guests will take a deep dive into the lore of the Jaws franchise, the history of comedy and why it is never a good idea to take a bath at a funeral.

What’s the Difference: Emergency

What’s the difference between a fire engine and a fire truck?

What’s the difference between a pandemic and an epidemic?

Areas of Expertise

Jena Friedman: The TV show "Ghostwriter," the history of improv and the ebola virus.

Jack O’Brien: The film Jaws 2, the film Rocky IV and Wu-Tang Clan solo records from 1993 to 1997.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong
Jena Friedman
Jack O’Brien

With guest experts:


Tracy Newman, Phyllis Katz and Jena Friedman

Phyllis Katz and Tracy Newman, original company members of The Groundlings improv theater.


Jack O’Brien and Carl Gottlieb

Carl Gottlieb, Screenwriter of Jaws and author of The Jaws Log.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Ep. 42: Go Fact Yourself with Jim Beaver & Erica Rhodes

| 0 comments
Dr. Betsy Bogart, J. Keith van Straaten, Erica Rhodes, Helen Hong, Jim Beaver
Guests: 
Jim Beaver & Erica Rhodes
Guests: 
Dr. Stephen Brumwell & Dr. Betsy Bogart

C’est l’heure pour un nouvel épisode de Go Fact Yourself*! (In case your French is a little rusty: It’s time for a new episode of Go Fact Yourself!)

Jim Beaver is an actor who’s known for his roles in TV shows like, "Breaking Bad," and, "Justified," where he’s earned a reputation as a "tough guy"-type who’s usually associated with guns. He’s also done a lot of research on major Hollywood figures from other eras. He’ll explain why he didn’t let the technological limitations from his youth get in the way of his research of actor John Garfield. Jim Beaver can be seen in the final season of "Supernatural".

Jim will face off against Erica Rhodes, who’s currently tearing it up on NBC’s "Bring The Funny" and who had a memorable turn on "Modern Family". She’s been involved in show-business since she was 10 as a voice on the radio-drama "Prairie Home Companion". Erica’s newest comedy album is "Sad Lemon" and she’ll explain how she settled on the title after a little crowdsourcing.

The guests will discuss classic musicals set in France, American traitors and the finer aspects of going Dutch.

What’s the Difference: Going Dutch

What’s the difference between Holland and The Netherlands?

What’s the difference between a levee and a dike?

Areas of Expertise

Jim Beaver: Benedict Arnold, movies based on Raymond Chandler novels and "Adventures of Superman"

Erica Rhodes: The film The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, philosopher Friedrich Neitzsche, and the poet William Wordsworth.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Jim Beaver and Erica Rhodes

Jim Beaver
Erica Rhodes

With guest experts:

Dr. Stephen Brumwell, award-winning author of several books on American history.


Dr. Betsy Bogart and Erica Rhodes

Dr. Betsy Bogart, singer and Film Studies teacher at UCLA.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Ep. 41: Go Fact Yourself with Jamie Kennedy & Melissa McQueen

| 0 comments
Jamie Kennedy, J. Keith van Straaten, Melissa McQueen, Helen Hong, Grant Rosenmeyer
Guests: 
Jamie Kennedy & Melissa McQueen
Guests: 
Brian Dunning & Grant Rosenmeyer

Go Fact Yourself is coming to Chicago! Join us on August 9 & 10 at Sleeping Village. Visit gofactyourpod.com for tickets and details.

Our patented mind-control techniques compel you to hear this episode of Go Fact Yourself!

Jamie Kennedy is a comedian and actor. He’s spent most of his life working in film and television with some big names like Frank Oz and David O. Russell. But how did he decide that he wanted to spend his life in Hollywood? It all goes back to his minor background role in a classic Robin Williams film. Jamie Kennedy can be seen in the upcoming film Ad Astra.

Jamie will face off against a frequent collaborator of his: comedian Melissa McQueen. These days, she’s known for wearing sequins and sparkly outfits while performing on comedy stages across the country. But she’ll tell us about how she used to work to help other people perform on stage… as a karaoke KJ.

The guests will chat about government secrets, child-actors and the value of passing on deceased relatives' clothing.

What’s the Difference: Impostors

What’s the difference between "duplicate" and "replicate?"

What’s the difference between a robot and an android?

Areas of Expertise

Jamie Kennedy: The MK Ultra conspiracy, pacemakers and lyrics to the Big Bopper song "Chantilly Lace."

Melissa McQueen: Lyrics from the Hall & Oates album Rock & Soul Part 1, the film The Royal Tenenbaums and The Pizzagate Conspiracy.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Helen Hong


Jamie Kennedy and Melissa McQueen

Jamie Kennedy
Melissa McQueen

With guest experts:

Brian Dunning, science writer and host of the award-winning "Skeptoid Podcast".


Melissa McQueen and Grant Rosenmeyer

Grant Rosenmeyer, producer and actor who’s appeared on Broadway, film and television.

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Ep. 40: Go Fact Yourself with Anthony Rapp & Jessica McKenna

| 0 comments
Helen Hong, Stephen Park, J. Keith van Straaten, Anthony Rapp, Cristela Alonzo, Jessica McKenna, Rory O'Malley
Guests: 
Anthony Rapp & Jessica McKenna
Guests: 
Rory O'Malley, Stephen Park & Helen Hong
Guests: 
Cristela Alonzo

Go Fact Yourself is coming to Chicago! Join us on August 9 & 10 at Sleeping Village. Visit gofactyourpod.com for tickets and details.

Cristela Alonzo is a comedian and former guest on Go Fact Yourself. This week, she’s stepping in as the co-host! Her new book "Music to My Years" will be out in October.

Jessica McKenna is known for the podcast "Off Book" where she and her co-host Zach Reino improvise a full musical with special guests… even if the guests aren’t totally aware of what’s going on when they first join the program. Jessica is also a voice-artist who’s cornered a very specific portrayal: scrappy ten-year-old boys. She’ll explain what’s behind her expertise.

Jessica will face off against someone who also knows a lot about musicals: actor Anthony Rapp. He was part of the original cast of Rent and now stars on the CBS show "Star Trek: Discovery." You could say he’s a pretty accomplished guy, but he’ll tell us about his formative years where he got some unsolicited advice from legendary stage actor Yul Brynner.

The guests will also discuss American presidents, contemporary films and denim jackets.

What’s the Difference: Pay me back

What’s the difference between "loan" and "lend?"

What’s the difference between a charge card and a credit card?

Areas of Expertise

Jessica McKenna: American Presidents, the musical Hamilton and Christmas & Christmas movies

Anthony Rapp: The Coen Brothers movies, the Chicago Cubs baseball team from the early 2000’s to the present and the Mass Effect video-game series.

Appearing in this episode:

J. Keith van Straaten
Cristela Alonzo
Jessica McKenna
Anthony Rapp

With guest experts:


Jessica McKenna and Rory O'Malley

Rory O’Malley, Tony Award-nominated actor who’s performed in the stage shows Hamilton and The Book of Mormon.


Helen Hong, Stephen Park and Anthony Rapp

Stephen Park, actor who’s known for his performances in the films Fargo and Do the Right Thing.

Helen Hong, comedian and actress who appeared in the film Inside Llewyn Davis and who’s the regular co-host of Go Fact Yourself!

Go Fact Yourself was devised by Jim Newman and J. Keith van Straaten, and produced in collaboration with Maximum Fun. The show was recorded at The Angel City Brewery in Los Angeles.

Theme Song by Jonathan Green.
Maximum Fun's Senior Producer is Laura Swisher.
The show is edited by Julian Burrell.

Syndicate content