Cody Johnston's "Some More News" Is Essential Quarantine Content
Watching him slowly lose his mind might be the only way to keep your sanity
Cody Johnston is a news dude.
That's the official title listed on screen in each episode of his (almost) weekly YouTube series Some More News. It conveys the tongue-in-cheek formality of the videos which play on conventions of traditional TV news, with an anchor desk, lots of flashy graphics and sound cues, and increasingly absurd segment titles.
It's a format that Johnston and his producer—fellow Cracked alum Katy Stoll—carried over from the previous iteration, Some News, which ended along with the golden era of Cracked.com, when the new owners slashed the site's staff. Fortunately, their work has only gotten better since they were forced to become independent, relying largely on patreon donations for funding.
Maybe We Should Fix The Impeachment Process? - SOME MORE NEWSwww.youtube.com
While Johnston's disheveled appearance and rambling delivery intentionally undermine the trappings of self-serious journalism, that shouldn't be taken as a sign that the work they're doing is a joke—far from it. The self-deprecation and humor of Some More News are just there to take the edge off Johnston's well-researched and passionate commentary—to make the medicine go down a little smoother.
With the possible exception of episodes that delve into the threat of super-powered wild boars and the shifting political landscape of Star Wars universe, Some More News delivers more thoughtful, rigorous, and cutting commentary than most of the cable news shows it parodies.
With episodes ranging from around 10 minutes to over an hour, Johnston highlights figures and issues that shape the American political conversation, with deep dives into people like Jared Kushner, Michael Bloomberg, and Tucker Carlson and insightful breakdowns of topics from gun control to climate change and sex trafficking.
Throughout the Trump era his measured perspective and sardonic wit have been a source of catharsis and a way to stay informed without fully dissolving into a puddle of despair. He and the Some More News team even made an episode of only positive stories called "Some Good News," last August… about seven months before John Krasinski ripped off that title like the loveable CIA prankster he is.
The Anti-Sex Trafficking Law That Made Sex-Trafficking Worse - SOME MORE NEWSwww.youtube.com
In short, Some More News has always been great, but since pandemic lockdown orders went into effect in Los Angeles, it has somehow only improved. While staying true to its format, the show—or Cody's Showdy—has embraced the limits of quarantine and the devolving mental state that way too many of us are suffering from in prolonged isolation. While it's clear that when Johnston talks to his sock he's playing up his loneliness and the broken state of his mental health, it's also clear that he's not entirely making it up.
While his unkempt appearance and exhausted demeanor have always communicated his struggle to cope with the collapsing neoliberal order and the rise of fascist ideology in the absence of a true left movement in America, the conditions of quarantine have elevated that aspect of the show to a new significance.
There is something so sincere and relatable about the haphazard way in which the cloth map is hung behind him for a background and in the crazed desperation of his eyes as he compares Jared Kushner to the doll from The Boy and discusses the inability of capitalist institutions to respond appropriately to the COVID-19 crisis.
Jared Kushner: Coronavirus Hero Boy - SOME MORE NEWSwww.youtube.com
Increasingly, watching Cody Johnston slowly lose his mind as he breaks down the state of the world might be the only way to safely/sanely stay informed. It's what you need—what we all need right now. So go watch. And if you can't get enough, you can hear Cody Johnston and Katy Stoll discuss current events in their accompanying podcast, Even More News.