In the past couple of years, podcasts have skyrocketed in popularity. From celebrities to social media to influencers to regular people, anyone can make a podcast on any topic they’d like. However, it’s no surprise why some of the top-performing podcasts are from people we already know.
Dax Shepard is known for his comedy and goofy personality, but in his podcast Armchair Expert, he takes a more serious approach with his interview-style format. Shepard and co-host, Monica Padman, interview celebrities on serious topics such as mental health, addiction, life issues, and more.
Armchair Expert is one of the most successful podcasts to date, and there’s good reason for that. Let’s talk about how Armchair Expert began and what you can expect to hear on the show!
The Hosts Behind Armchair Expert
Dax Shepard hosts Armchair Expert with long-time friend, Monica Padman. Monica Padman initially met Dax Shepard and his wife, Kristin Bell, through various social circles including being casted as Bell’s assistant on House of Lies. Additionally, Bell actually hired Padman to babysit her and Shepard’s children, so it’s clear that she’s a close friend of the two actors.
Dax Shepard and Monica Padman host their podcast infamously in “the attic,” which is coincidentally just the attic of Shepard’s home.
Premiering in February of 2018, Dax Shepard and Monica Padman started their podcast in the infamous “attic,” which is coincidentally just the attic of Shepard’s home. Within the year, Armchair Expert became the most downloaded new podcast in 2018.
Types of Content on Armchair Expert
In Dax Shepard’s personal life, he has struggled with addiction and other mental health issues. Although we see him as this funny and goofy guy, he has a serious side which he has chosen to showcase on his podcast.
Armchair Expert is an interview-focused podcast, and it focuses on serious life issues and subject matters that his interviewees are facing. Of course, you’ll still hear the occasional joke from both Shepard and the guests on the show, the entire premise of the show is to explore mature subject matters pertaining to life and being a human.
Interview with Anna Kendrick
On a recent episode of Armchair Expert, Anna Kendrick was a guest on the show. On the episode, she talked about her experience being in a toxic relationship and her thoughts on the word “gaslighting.” Popular from her roles in Pitch Perfect, Trolls, and more, she talks a little bit about her experience as an actor in these roles and the pressures placed on her while doing so.
Interview with Lauren Graham
On one of the first episodes of Armchair Expert, Dax Shepard had Lauren Graham on the show which was a fan favorite initially due to their sibling roles on the show Parenthood. On this episode, Graham dives into both her childhood and maternal thoughts as well as some fears she has while growing older. They also touch on social media issues and their mutual gratitude for Parenthood.
Interview with Leslie Odom Jr.
In August of 2020, Dax Shepard and Monica Padman interviewed Leslie Odom Jr. which was a fan favorite episode due to his role in Hamilton. In this episode, Leslie Odom Jr. talks about his fear of being viewed as a “token” and his beginnings as a grocery store employee. Additionally, the three talk about their different perspectives on cancel culture.
Armchair Expert currently has 11.9K followers on YouTube, 735K followers on Instagram, and is not currently active on TikTok.
As the show is now only available on Spotify, it appears that the podcast has an average number of almost 20 million monthly listeners.
As of January 2023, Armchair Expert was ranked in the number 5 spot on Spotify, and the show is not currently being broadcasted on Apple Music due to a recent multi-year deal made with Spotify.
Based on this analysis we estimated that the Armchair Expert podcast receives 3 to 5 million listens each time an episode goes out across Apple, Google, Youtube and Spotify podcast networks.
The Format of Armchair Expert
The majority of the episodes on Armchair Expert are formatted as interviews, as the premise of the show is to showcase people’s different life experiences. Each episode is about 2 hours long on average, but they can range anywhere from just under an hour to 3 hours long depending on the episode.
This is a very ad-heavy podcast, so you’ll often hear an ad at the beginning, in the middle, and at the end of every episode.
In addition to the guests listed above, some other reputable guests featured on the show include:
- Bill Gates
- Hillary Clinton
- Lena Dunham
- Seth Rogan
- Judd Apatow
- Alicia Keys
- Zoe Kravitz
- John Legend
Armchair Expert has had an overwhelming amount of success since first starting with some of the most influential and popular guests being interviewed on the show. Currently, Armchair Expert has landed a multi-year deal with Spotify, so that will be the only platform it’s available for listening.
With Spotify dominating the podcast market, Dax Shepard views this partnership as a step in the right direction, and we can expect to still keep listening to this show for many years to come.