Hi, I’m Dax Shepard, and I love talking to people. I am endlessly fascinated by the messiness of being human, and I find people who are vulnerable and honest about their struggles and shortcomings to be incredibly sexy. I invite you to join me as I explore other people’s stories. We will celebrate, above all, the challenges and setbacks that ultimately lead to growth and betterment. What qualifies me for such an endeavor? More than a decade of sobriety, a degree in Anthropology and four years of improv training. I will attempt to discover human “truths” without any laboratory work, clinical trials or data collection. I will be, in the great tradition of 16th-century scientists, an Armchair Expert.
Fred Savage (The Wonder Years, The Princess Bride, The Grinder) is an American actor, director and producer. Fred sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss being a child in the public eye and his singular goal of finding the emotional underpinning in all projects. Dax wonders about Fred’s decision to go to college amidst a burgeoning career and Fred talks about emulating Ron Howard. The two discuss being in the dead dad club, Fred gives his trick to auditioning and Monica and Dax coin a new word in the fact check.
Andy Richter (Conan, Madagascar, Andy Richter Controls the Universe) is an American actor, voice actor, writer, comedian and late night talk show announcer. Andy sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his childhood, the idiosyncrasies of growing up in a small town and the importance of being vocal about mental health. Dax talks about the first time he saw Andy at a bar and Andy talks about his experience as a winner on Jeopardy. The two talk about their different journeys through drugs, Dax wonders if the term “sidekick” is triggering and Andy talks about finally feeling content.
Jennifer Newsom is an American documentary filmmaker and actress. Jennifer joins us on this episode of Experts on Expert to discuss her documentary The Mask You Live In, the value of teaching empathy at a young age and the fear surrounding the toxic masculinity conversation. Dax wonders what it’s like to travel with secret service and Jennifer discusses the increasing need for “feminine” traits in business. The two talk about conscious capitalism and the role both genders play in building stereotypes.
Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live, Barry, Trainwreck, Skeleton Twins) is an American comedian, actor and producer. Bill sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss growing up surrounded by females, his experience as a production assistant in LA and his struggle with intense anxiety at SNL. Bill talks about the first time he met a movie star and Dax questions Bill on why he has so much sexual rhythm with women. The two discuss how growing up in a small town ingrains self-deprecation and Bill repeats sage advice he learned from Jeff Bridges.
Steve Madden is an American fashion designer and businessman. Steve sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss feeling different from an early age, his experience going to prison and the surreality to watching his life on the big screen. Dax is excited to learn Steve is sober and Steve talks about managing his ego. The two talk about the trap of narcissism and Steve discusses growing his business from $1100 to over a billion dollars.
Aubrey Plaza (Parks and Recreation, Legion, Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates) is an American actress, comedian and producer. Aubrey sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her desire to disrupt the norm, her experience in same-sex education and her journey after a love that got away. She talks about the unsavory elements of working at a video store and Dax convinces her she is great on talk shows. The two talk about their medical histories, her draw to improv and Monica and Dax go to Detroit for the fact check.
Dr. Alex Katehakis Ph.D., MFT, CSAT-S, CST-S is the Clinical Director of Center for Healthy Sex in Los Angeles and the author of Erotic Intelligence: Igniting Hot, Healthy Sex While in Recovery from Sex Addiction, Sex Addiction as Affect Dysregulation: A Neurobiologically Informed Holistic Treatment and co-author of Mirror of Intimacy: Daily Reflections on Emotional and Erotic Intelligence. Dr. Alex sits down in the attic to discuss the role shame plays in sexual dysfunction, the indicators of love addiction and the practice of tantric intimacy. She talks about the multiple factors that lead to disassociation and Dax believes dolphins are very sexual. The two discuss the different types of relationships young people are engaging in and they talk about the impact of pornography on developing minds.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Saturday Night Live, Seinfeld, Veep) is an American actress, comedian, producer and queen of the Armchair Expert’s heart. Julia sits down in the attic to discuss her childhood, her intense fear of horror films and her naivety surrounding Seinfeld’s popularity. Julia talks about her attraction to cynical people and Dax hopes to become Julia’s stepdad and husband. The two chat about the trap of raising children in Los Angeles and Julia remarks on the ways having breast cancer rightsized all her priorities.
Jeff Garlin (Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Goldbergs, Arrested Development) is an American comedian, actor, producer, director, and writer. Jeff sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the pursuit of being humble, utilizing respect as a parenting philosophy and his unconventional process in creating stand up. Jeff talks about the torment of unrequited love and Dax asks about his partnership with Larry David. The two discuss the trap of negativity and Jeff dissects the way he uses food to regulate emotions.
Elizabeth Gilbert is an American author best known for her books Eat Pray Love, Committed and Big Magic. Elizabeth sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss growing up on a Christmas tree farm, her highest moment during the Eat Pray Love process and she talks about a tragic moment that led to a deep realization. Elizabeth recalls getting her first short story published and Dax dissects his young attraction to rogue writers. The two discuss methods of female empowerment and Elizabeth talks about her positive relationship with fear.
Will Ferrell (Anchorman, Saturday Night Live, Step Brothers) is an American actor, comedian, producer and writer. Will sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the impetus for Anchorman, his reverence for being on a team and his love for Sweden. Will gives the backstory of when he dressed as security at a Lakers game and Dax questions Will about the ways in which he contradicts comedic stereotypes. The two talk about childhood moments that led to careers in comedy, Will discusses his compulsion to put himself in stressful situations and Dax admits to occasionally getting angry at Will’s creative genius.
Erin Lee Carr is an American documentary film director, writer, and producer. She sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her journey to sobriety, her interest in complicated humans and growing up with parents who are addicts. Dax asks about Erin’s relationship with her father and Erin talks about creating boundaries in her filmmaking. The two talk about process-oriented work, her need to speak for those who are silenced and how AA meetings taught her how to listen.
Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick, Silicon Valley, Adventure Time) is a Pakistani-American stand-up comedian, actor, podcast host, and writer. Kumail sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his path to overcoming undiagnosed anger, he talks about the moment he realized his childhood cuteness had disappeared and he gives the backstory to why he stumbled in his SNL monologue. Dax wonders what it’s like to be married to a relationship therapist and Kumail talks about his journey to gain 20 lbs of muscle in 5 months. The two debate whether feeling excluded is universal, Kumail talks about his complicated relationship with Pakistan and he teaches Dax the difference between Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic hamburgers.
Samin Nosrat is an American chef and food writer. She is a regular food columnist for the New York Times magazine and has a docuseries on Netflix called Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. Samin visits the attic to discuss how community is tied to food, her first experience at Chez Panisse where she eventually worked and her realization that mistakes lead to growth. Dax describes some of his favorite at home recipes and Samin talks about how she cried in every episode of her documentary series. The two talk about food systems, the importance of asking for help and Samin wishes Americans had more words for “restaurant”.
Craig T. Nelson (Coach, Poltergeist, Parenthood) is an American actor and the Armchair Expert’s TV dad. Craig sits down in the attic to discuss his struggle with aging, his journey to sobriety and he talks about the period in his life when he left LA for something simpler. Dax asks Craig to regale us with some of his epic drug stories and Craig reflects upon his relationship with his father. The two talk about their time on Parenthood together, the bond over their mutual love of racing cars and they discuss the power of the ego.
Justin Long (Jeepers Creepers, Dodgeball, Alvin and the Chipmunks) is an American actor and comedian. Justin sits down in the attic to discuss growing up in a religious family, feeling protective of his older brother and he shares the moment he realized adults can be wrong. Justin talks about his relationship with men who are physically larger than him and Dax is blown away by Justin’s Vince Vaughn impression. Dax as Justin talk about the rare experience of dating someone in the public eye, Dax lists reasons why he is jealous of Justin and Justin talks about getting abducted in Michigan.
Listen and subscribe to Justin’s podcast Life Is Short: http://wondery.fm/lifeisshort
Bill Nye (Bill Nye the Science Guy) is American science communicator, television presenter, and mechanical engineer. Bill sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the importance of facts, the pros and cons of shooting Bill Nye the Science guy in Seattle and he declares all kids love science. Dax wonders if Bill has any taste buds left after eating too many frozen marshmallows and Bill talks about his parents' fascinating journeys. The two discuss the Wright brothers, the impact of Steve Martin and the future of Science.
Hasan Minhaj (The Daily Show, Homecoming King, Patriot Act) is an American comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, and television host. Hasan sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss feeling overwhelmed by the balance of life and work and the effect of trends and forces in his life. Dax wonders if Hasan is attracted to people who resemble his mother and Hasan wants Monica to speak up. The two talk about Dax’s relationship insecurity, the current excitement around diverse cultures represented in art and Hasan gives the secret sauce to The Daily Show magic.
Esther Perel is a Belgian author and psychotherapist. Esther sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the true definition of eroticism, the unrealistic expectations we put on our partners and how the status of a couple affects the whole family. She finds the current lack of sex education unacceptable and Dax wonders if Esther’s husband is intimidated by her. Esther delineates the complexities of infidelity, she insists we break societal labels and she talks about the residual effect of growing up with parents who survived the Nazi concentration camps.
Stephen Merchant (The Office, Extras, The Ricky Gervais Show) is an English writer, director, radio presenter, comedian and actor. Stephen sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the pros and cons of being tall and his philosophy on directing. Dax and Stephen reminisce on the pre-internet era when it was impossible to find answers to bizarre questions. They talk about the differences between English and American standards on alcohol consumption and mental health and Stephen talks about the success of The Office and its lasting impact. In the fact check, Monica and Dax reflect on past indiscretions at the bowling alley and they hope the statute of limitations is up.
Dr. Eric Topol is an American cardiologist, geneticist, digital medicine researcher and the director and founder of Scripps research institute. The good doctor sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the benefits of applying Artificial intelligence to our healthcare system, he talks about the concept of deep leaning and he relays the importance of human to human interaction in medicine. Dax wonders if we are spending too much money on end of life care and Eric debunks the notion that AI will fully replace humans. The two talk about the futile search for pain relief and the doctor gets everyone excited about the advent of a smartphone full body scan. Also, Monica and Dax get a special surprise call in the fact check.
Norah Jones is a Grammy award-winning American singer, songwriter, and pianist. She sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the trajectory of her career, her commitment to music and dealing with public criticism. Norah admits she is attracted to musicians and Dax, in response, declares his rudimentary knowledge of drumming. The two talk about the value of relationships pre and post-fame, they bond over having powerful single mothers and Norah plays music for Dax and Monica making them feel like their live in a matrix.
Michael Gervais is a high-performance psychologist and co-founder of Compete to Create. In this episode of Experts on Expert, Michael sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss working on the RedBull Stratos project, the nuisance of overcoming mental obstacles and his work with Microsoft employees to maximize work performance. The two talk about the mindfulness revolution, optimal coaching techniques and steps to train your mind.
Will Forte (SNL, MacGruber, Nebraska, The Last Man on Earth) is an American actor, comedian, writer and producer. Will sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss turning down SNL, living with OCD and the experience of creating his own show. Dax has mastered the Irish goodbye and Will remembers shooting his first scene of an Alexander Payne movie. Will recalls his SNL audition characters, he talks about getting fired from Letterman and Dax thinks MacGruber is a perfect comedy.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta is an American neurosurgeon, medical reporter and CNN medical correspondent. He sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss wanting to change his name to Steve as a child, performing surgery in a wartime environment and he breaks the misconception that brain size is the primary factor in intelligence. Dax and Sanjay share a Michigander past and they discuss some of the failing components of our current healthcare system. He talks about recent findings in CTE and leaves us with advice on ways to maximize health and prolong life.
Adam Pally (Happy Endings, The Mindy Project, The Presidents Show) is an American actor, comedian, producer and writer. Adam stops by the attic to discuss feeling bitter toward the industry, loving the feeling of losing and his newfound look on Judaism. Dax wants Adam to stop burning bridges and Adam talks about the one takeaway he gained from acting school. The two note the specific placement of movie billboards, they discuss different kinds of recognizability and Adam recalls a piece of advice he learned from Jimmy Kimmel.
Chelsea Handler (Chelsea Lately, The Chelsea Handler Show, Chelsea Does) is an American comedian, actress, writer, television host, producer, activist and bonafide baller. Chelsea sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her very odorous experience on iowaska, her need to escape her family and her realization that her patterns with men are the result of a childhood trauma. Dax asks about her relationship to substances and Chelsea is hoping to find a skiing buddy. The two talk about the root of her intimidating nature, censorship in comedy and how old men love Chelsea.
John Kim is a licensed therapist, life coach and author. He sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his commitment to redefining masculinity, why he created The Angry Therapist blog and his view on expired relationships. John talks about the deep communication barrier with his parents and Dax wonders if John's marriage was a result of feeling "other" his whole life. The two talk about living in a fatherless nation, they discuss what it means to live a "through me" life and John tells a notable story involving sexual exploration and a stone fruit.
Chris D’Elia (Whitney, Undatable, The Good Doctor) is an American stand up comedian, actor, writer and podcast host. Chris sits down in the attic to discuss his relationship patterns, his young obsession to resemble Luke Perry and his terrible memory. Chris talks about his desire to have a family and Dax wonders why Chris has never done drugs. The two talk about the different ways comedians are perceived, Chris wishes he has been born with the name Damian Monroe and it remains unclear as to whether or not Chris and Kristen (Bell) had sex in college.
Armchair Expert Live from Los Angeles at the Theatre at Ace Hotel. January 17th, 2019.
This episode features “Sisyphus” by Andrew Bird off his new album “My Finest Work Yet” and “Oopsies” by Bob Mervak & Kristen Bell.
Gwyneth Paltrow (Shakespeare in Love, Emma, Seven, Iron Man) is an American actress and owner of a natural health company, Goop. Gwyneth sits down with the Armchair Expert in this special crossover episode to talk about her relationship to fear and control, intentional parenting and her profound relationship with her father. Gwyneth promises Dax a BIG birthday present and Dax deems Gwyneth the one person with whom he'd like to trade lives. The two discuss Gwyneth's propensity to trigger peoples insecurities, they talk about the current social climate of seeking fame as a career and in the fact check Dax makes a grave mistake involving Monica and Gwyneth's handbags.
Johann Hari is a Swiss English author and journalist. Johann sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the many factors that have impacted his research on addiction and mental health, he explains why he is disillusioned by the idea that addiction is purely chemical, and he talks about the importance of community and love in depressive people. Johann talks about his own personal experience with anti-depressants, trauma and familial addiction that led him to his exploration. Dax debates Johann about the importance of tough love and he wonders if models of rehabilitation in other countries can be mapped on to America.
Johann is the author of Chasing the Scream and Lost Connections: Uncovering the real causes of depression and the unexpected solutions.
Evan Rachel Wood (Thirteen, Across the Universe, Mildred Pierce, Westworld) is an American actress, activist, and musician. She sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her childhood growing up amongst adults, her young foray into the entertainment industry and she shares her experience with domestic abuse. Dax asks about the sustainability of dating when having a child and Evan thinks we’re definitely living in a matrix. The two chat about the benefit of psychedelic drugs, they discuss the nuisance of victimhood and they unpack a past twitter fight between the two them.
Reshma Saujani is an Indian American lawyer, author, politician and founder of the tech organization Girls Who Code. She sits down in the attic to discuss how she spent her childhood trying to assimilate, what it felt like when she reached a lifelong status goal and she talks about her mission to promote bravery. Dax asks Reshma about what she learned from two failed elections and Reshma discusses her relationship with religion. Dax and Reshma debate the roles of biology and culture on gender differences and Dax wants to go back in time and visit Monica’s grandma.
Pete Holmes (Crashing, The Pete Holmes Show, You Made It Weird with Pete Holmes podcast) is an American comedian, actor, writer and podcaster. Pete sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his three-way marriage with comedy, the book that got him sober and how his life resembles the biblical story of Jacob and Esau. Pete decides Dax’s mom would be played by Francis McDormand and Dax predicts fatherhood will rightsize Pete’s problems. Dax and Pete talk about the different tactics men use to appear attractive to women, how modesty is an equally alpha move to being ostentatious and the two have different takes on the fatherly nature of Bob Vila.
John Gottman is an American psychological researcher, an award-winning speaker, author, a professor emeritus in psychology and co-founder of the Gottman Institute. John sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his research on thin slicing and predicting marital success. He notes how having a daughter turned him into an instant feminist and He talks about the different ways men and women view sex. The two talk about a father's crucial role to a child, they delve into the four horsemen of the apocalypse and John urges couples to foster curiosity.
Jake Johnson (New Girl, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Let’s Be Cops) is an American actor and comedian. Jake sits down in the attic to discuss his early misconception of school, he pinpoints a career moment where he felt humbled and talks about his process mending a parental relationship. Jake describes the discomfort of being a public person and Dax admits that books he used to worship have lost a lot of societal value over time. Jake and Dax discuss choosing family over work, they delve into addiction and Jake tells the story of how he got stuck at Natalie Portman’s house.
Chelsea Peretti (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Parks and Recreation, The Sarah Silverman Program) is an American writer, comedian and actress. Chelsea sits down with the armchair expert to discuss her resistance to ambition, the intrigue behind successful siblings and how biology is anti-feminist. Dax admits that he desperately wants Chelsea's approval and he can't discern whether or not she likes him. The two talk about parenting as public figures, she describes feeling very unprepared when she started Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Dax thinks Chelsea is from Long Island.
Jason Mantzoukas (The League, The Dictator, Parks and Recreation, How Did This Get Made Podcast) is an American actor, comedian and improviser. Jason sits down in the attic to talk about Bostonian culture, his early goal of being on The Daily Show and his year abroad studying how cultures use music for medicinal purposes. Dax asks about his deathly food allergy and Jason thinks we are on the brink of a paradigm shift in comedy. Dax wonders if Jason ever feels resentful for his place in the industry, Jason talks about how he never expected to be single in his 40s and Monica feels like a fangirl.
Dr. Phil McGraw is an American television personality, author, psychologist, and the host of the television show Dr. Phil. Dr. Phil comes to the attic after accidentally going to the wrong house and happily surprising a nice woman. He sits down to discuss growing up around an alcoholic father, he talks about his 10-7-5 theory on life and he reflects on his career before the Dr. Phil show. Dax asks how he handles negative misconceptions about him and Dr.Phil talks about his first meeting with Oprah. The two dissect why they often feel emotionless, they discuss what it’s like to be both fallible and in an advisory position and Dax wonders about the mechanics of sun tea.
Ryan Hansen (Veronica Mars, Party Down, Ryan Hansen Solves Crimes in Television) is an American actor, comedian and best friend of the Armchair Expert. Ryan sits down in the attic to discuss his insecurity about coming on the show, his time as a party pumper and he talks about what it was like to get married at a young age. Dax thanks Ryan for being such a source of joy and light in his life and Ryan commends Dax on his growth as a man. The two travel down memory lane and re-hash Ryan’s spectacular crash on an alpine sled, Ryan remembers the moment Dax met Kristen and Ryan insists he is 6 feet tall despite Dax’s skepticism.
Todd Rose is the co-founder and president of the Populace, author of multiple books and a faculty member at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Todd sits down in the attic to discuss his research on dark horse achievers, he talks about his low point when he was employed giving enemas, and he stresses the importance of finding your motivation. Dax wonders if we live in a world that is able to support this kind of evolved attitude and Todd praises Dax's correct pronunciation of "attic". The two share a visceral memory of the smell of the great salt lake, they delineate the 4 steps to realizing your potential and Dax offers Monica a generous 2019 Christmas present in the fact check.
Michael Peña (Crash, End of Watch, Ant-Man, The Martian, CHiPs) is an American actor and musician. Michael sits down with the armchair expert to discuss his love of rehearsal, feeling like a man without a country and his experience overcoming the lack of Latino roles as an early actor. Dax wonders if he robbed Michael of the "actors bond" during CHiPs and Michael gives the backstory on his character in Observe and Report. Dax and Michael discuss how parenting methods have changed, Michael refuses to believe he's a movie star and Dax accuses Monica and Michael of having rhythm.
Bret Weinstein is an American biologist and Evolutionary theorist. Bret sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the boundaries of empathy, the concept of metaphorical truth and the bonding dynamics between males and females. Dax and Bret advocate for the protection of intellectual discourse and the two agree that there isn't a universally effective human diet. Bret talks about the evolvement of monogamy, the trajectory of gossip over time and Dax teaches Bret about the mechanics of the hall pass.
Jay Leno (The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Jay Leno Show, Jay Leno's Garage) is an American comedian, actor, writer, producer, television host and true legend. Jay sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his early years as a comedian, he recounts the moment Rodney Dangerfield had a stroke on his show and he deems Letterman a master wordsmith. Dax is stunned by Jay's car knowledge and he commends Jay's ability to reach out a helping hand to those in need. Jay tells the story of how he tricked his dad into buying a souped-up car when he was young, he remembers a time when he turned a bad situation into a positive one with the help of Taylor Swift and he pinpoints the sole moment he got nervous before performing.
Sarah Silverman (Saturday Night Live, The Sarah Silverman Program, Wreck-It Ralph, I Smile Back) is an American stand-up comedian, actress, producer, writer and benevolent goddess. Sarah sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the sexual double standard between male and female comics, she talks about her experience as a teenage bed wetter and she touches on her commitment to empathy. Sarah reflects on a moment where she used sexuality to gain power and Dax wonders if her attractiveness was a hindrance in the comedy community. The two have a discussion about the curliness of pubic hair, they dissect Sarah’s misophonia and Dax apologizes for a past interaction that still haunts him.
Scott Harrison is the founder and current CEO of the non-profit charity, Charity: Water. Scott sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his unconventional childhood and his career as a club promoter turned philanthropist. He attempts to disarm Dax's skepticism and he explains why giving begets giving. Scott delves into his mothers' struggle with the world, he talks about his feelings of powerlessness and he explains the rare financial model behind Charity: Water.
Josh Hutcherson (Zathura, The Kids are Alright, The Hunger Games) is an American actor, producer, director and prodigal son to the Armchair Expert. Josh sits down in the attic to discuss his brother's obsession with Ken Jennings, why it’s easy to fall in love in love with fellow actors and the joy of living in a foreign country. Josh reveals that he is, in fact, a colonel and Dax is intrigued by Josh’s sexual grandfather. The two talk about some of the negative experiences of fame and they reminisce on a moment when Dax drove a little too fast for Josh’s liking.
Josh Duhamel (Transformers, NBC's Las Vegas, When In Rome, Love, Simon) is an American actor, model and director. Josh sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his dad's breed of tough love, his struggle to become less of a people pleaser and how Steven Spielberg changed his life. Josh recounts the time he beat Ashton Kutcher in a modeling contest and Dax commits to objectifying Josh's body. The two talk about soap opera acting, how men prove their friendship and Dax and Monica reveal the most epic white elephant gift in the fact check.
Sean Hayes (Will and Grace, The Bucket List, Sean Saves The World) is an American actor, comedian, producer and worlds most lovable human. Sean sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss diffusing hardship with humor, he examines the bedrock for his people-pleasing nature and he reveals the advice Dax gave him that led to his public coming out. He talks about his affinity for matching pajamas and Dax tells the story of how he had butterflies after the first time he met Sean. Sean talks about his journey to Will and Grace, Dax wants Sean to have a baby and Monica and Dax debate why all old people are short on the fact check.
Sophia Bush (One Tree Hill, John Tucker Must Die, Chicago P.D.) is an American actress and activist. She sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her love of stunt driving, her experience being a woman in Hollywood and the steps she's taken toward self-fulfillment. Dax gives a solid piece of advice to young actresses and Sophia unknowingly drops Monica and Dax's favorite vocabulary words. The two talk about the path to learning from your previous mistakes, Sophia discusses reaching fame from a locational distance and in the fact check, Monica and Dax entertain the notion of Barack Obama fathering Monica's hypothetical child.
Jonathan Haidt is an author, moral psychologist and Professor of Ethical Leadership at New York University's Stern School of Business. He sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss moral panic on college campuses, the benefits of independence in childhood and the inherent difference in moral attitudes between the political left and right. The two talk about the failure of American systems, the ways in which we are breeding a generation of anxiety/depression and Monica and Dax pontificate on whether incest is immoral in the fact check.
Jonathan Haidt is the author of The Righteous Mind, The Happiness Hypothesis and The Coddling of The American Mind. Subscribe to Experts on Expert: http://bit.ly/exponexp
Andrea Savage (Step Brothers, Veep, I’m Sorry) is an American actress, comedian, and writer. Andrea sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her family of teeth, her profound realization after getting cut from the Groundlings and her physical resemblance to Julia Roberts. Andrea talks about a cat-centric traumatic event in her household and Dax wonders if Andrea remembers the time he arrived at her house on ecstasy. The two travel down memory lane about their previous romantic encounter and they talk about recent deaths in their respective families and what they gleaned from the experience.
Conan O'Brien (Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons, Late Night, Conan) is an American television host, comedian, writer, and producer. Conan sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the sad truth of bicycle accident funerals, his propensity for kindness after having consumed alcohol and how he has let humility become a guiding principle in his life. Dax is sad Conan never went to the playboy mansion and Conan corrects Dax's grammatical indiscretions. The two talk about the duality between control and chaos, they defend the idea that all parents should be slightly addicted to alcohol, they declare the certain fate of class clowns and Conan denies Monica's request to be friends.
Sam Harris is an American author, neuroscientist and podcast host. As the most referenced person on Armchair Expert, Sam enters the attic with an unparalleled reverence. On this special Thanksgiving episode of Experts on Expert, Sam makes our podcast dreams come true. The two discuss Sam’s commitment to honesty, they talk about the country’s political polarization and they consider the idea of separating art from the artist. Dax wonders if Sam operates out of fear, Sam talks about his battle with Batman and Sam attempts to take his foot out of Dax’s mouth.
Debby Ryan (The Suite Life on Deck, Jessie, Insatiable) is an American actress, singer and the youngest guest thus far on Armchair Expert. Debby sits down in the attic to discuss her childhood in Germany, her struggle with body dysmorphia and her experience as a Disney star. Debby talks about how she uses boxing as an outlet and Dax thinks Millie Bobby Brown looks like Tom Wilkinson. The two wonder if there is an onslaught of victimhood occurring in young people, they discuss Debby's lack of romantic interests and Debby impresses Dax with her first car purchase.
Ira Glass is an American public radio personality and the host and producer of the radio and television show This American Life. The armchair experts travel to NYC to record in the esteemed This American Life studios. In this special remote episode, Ira discusses the psychology behind affairs and why he is drawn to monogamy, he talks about his journey as a radio personality, and he contemplates his sense of control in his work. Dax wonders about what it feels like to be the conduit for other show’s success and Ira reveals what he deems is the best podcast right now. Dax tells Ira that being a part of a This American Life story was a career highlight and Ira can’t decide if he likes Kristen or Dax more.
Jerry Buting (Making A Murderer) is an American criminal defense attorney and author. He sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the mechanics of the justice system, his perpetual desire to root for the underdog and his recent book- Illusion of Justice. Dax asks Jerry about stereotypes in jury selection and Jerry breaks down the necessity of burden of proof. The two talk about the secret skills of an attorney, ethics in justice, false confessions and how the Steven Avery case catapulted him to dreamboat status.
Subscribe to Experts on Expert: http://bit.ly/exponexp
Mark Duplass (The Puffy Chair, Jeff Who Lives at Home, The League) is an American film director, film producer, actor, musician, screenwriter, author and old buddy of the Armchair Expert. Mark sits down in the attic to discuss his happiness living in the B+ range of his industry, he talks about a recent conscious uncoupling with his work partner/brother and he contemplates the reasons behind his workaholic sensibility. Dax details his writing routine and Mark reveals the trick Ray Romano taught him of how to make a joke land. Dax and Mark reminisce on a joyous time in their life when they would get together, watch old movies and dissect the male form.
Lena Dunham (Girls, Tiny Furniture, Camping) is an American actress, writer, producer and director. Lena sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss body image in Hollywood, how she handles haters on social media and the series of events that led to her showing Brad Pitt her underwear. Dax and Lena commiserate over their autoimmune disorders and they discuss the process of relationship growth. Lena talks about her recent path that’s led to deep self-exploration and Dax tells of the time he rescued Lesley Arfin from the basement of the Maritime hotel.
Rob McElhenney (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Fargo) is an American actor, director, producer, writer and one of Dax’s idols. Rob sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss raising young boys, he ponders celebrities role in social media and he details the multiple times he’s drastically changed his body. Dax exalts Rob’s discipline and in response Rob explains why he often sees that trait as a vice not a virtue. Rob and Dax talk about Brazilian jujitsu, they mutually gush over Kaitlin Olson and Dax is obsessed with Rob’s gym.
Dr. Drew Pinsky (Dr. Drew on Call, Loveline, Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew) is a board-certified internist, addiction medicine specialist, and media personality. On this episode of Experts on Expert, Dr. Drew discusses balancing ambition and family, how gut instinct is linked to the brain, and his reasoning for advocating the 12 step program. The two talk about monogamy and sex addiction, they list the myriad effects of suboxone and they chat about our ego's inability to separate self and family. Dr. Drew details some of his public blunders, he talks through the criticisms of Celebrity Rehab and Monica and Dax engage in a strange Foley exercise in the fact check.
Amy Schumer (Inside Amy Schumer, Trainwreck, I Feel Pretty) is an American stand-up comedian, actress and Queen of all things. Amy sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss body confidence, how she met her husband and her general contentment with death. Amy talks about the ubiquitous fear women harbor and Dax is excited they both share the title of Class Clown. The two veer into a conversation about gender differences that left Dax feeling regretful after the recording. Monica and Dax discuss the aftermath and resolution of that moment during the fact check.
Seth Meyers (Saturday Night Live, Late Night with Seth Meyers) is an American comedian, writer, political commentator, actor, and television host. The Armchair Expert travels to 30 Rock to discuss being beta to their female alpha counterparts and the uncomfortable competition that happens among friends in a sketch environment. Seth talks about the time Brad Paisley saved him from having to dance at his wedding, he discusses the balance between work and family and he details the highest moment during his day. Dax puts Seth at the top of the "hardest workers" list and Seth reveals the secret to getting Lorne Michaels to like you.
In this episode of Experts on Expert, the Armchair Expert speaks to author, professor and Israeli historian, Yuval Noah Harari. In this far too brief episode, Yuval discusses the differences between our experiential and narrative selves, he talks about a not so distant future in which AI will drastically alter the workforce and he theorizes on why the technological evolution could potentially warrant the return of communism. The two discuss the idea of myths, virtual reality and security. Dax and Monica mourn the fact that they only had an hour with Yuval and Dax takes an armcherry song request in the fact check.
Yuval Noah Harari is a tenured professor in the Department of History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is the author of the international bestsellers Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow, and 21 Lessons for the 21st Century.
Wendi McLendon-Covey (Reno 911, Bridesmaids, The Goldbergs) is an American actress and comedian. Wendi sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss their time at the Groundlings together, she talks about her family’s initial disapproval in her career and she reminisces on the horror of commercial auditions. Wendi talks about her decision to not have children and Dax tells of the time a hotel had to change their protocol due to one of his sexual encounters. The two touch on the topic of monogamy in Hollywood, they speculate on why there hasn’t been a sequel to Bridesmaids and Monica and Dax go on a field trip for the fact check.
She’s BAAAAAACKKKKK!!!!!! Kristen Bell rounds out The Good Place week by sitting down with the Armchair Expert (again) to discuss stereotypes, she gives advice on how to handle aggravating situations and she talks about why season 3 of The Good Place is the best yet. Dax asks Kristen to name the times he’s embarrassed her and Kristen refuses to wear headphones. Kristen and Monica name the reasons they love each other and they detail the layers of their baby/mother/wife relationship.
Episode 3 of The Good Place week shines a light on the man behind the curtain, Mike Schur. Mike (The Office, Parks and Recreation, Brooklyn 99) sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his philosophy on always “punching up”, he breaks down white privilege, details the many facets of showrunning and he gives a sweet anecdote that sums up Regis Philbin’s character. Dax and Mike discuss the virtues and pitfalls of Andrew Dice Clay, they talk about Mike’s attraction to equality and they come to the conclusion that Ted, Mike and Kristen would be the perfect threesome to pickpocket.
The Good Place week episode 2 is brought to you by American actress, comedian, and most lovable robot, D’Arcy Carden. D’Arcy sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her epiphany about confidence, she reveals which bodily function made her husband fall in love with her and she talks about the struggle with making a non-human character resonate with humans. The two talk about the ethical dilemma of student/teacher relationships, D’Arcy perfects the O’Reilly jingle and Dax, as to be expected, loves D’Arcy’s dad.
The Good Place week commences with American actor, producer and National Treasure, Ted Danson. Ted sits down with the Armchair Expert to reminisce on his early years in an unconventional upbringing, he explains the juxtaposition between playing a cool guy on TV despite feeling profoundly uncool in life and he discusses his ride through life on the back of a pickup truck. Dax refers to the first time he met Ted on the street in 1996 and he laments being unable to pronounce Ted’s name. Ted reveals the secret behind being deemed MVP and the two of them share an undying love for Kristen Bell.
Ike Barinholtz (Mad TV, The Mindy Project, Neighbors, Blockers) is an American comedian, screenwriter, actor and most likable human. Ike sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his time on Mad TV, he recalls lying to his parents about dropping out of college and he details a demoralizing job as a telemarketer. Dax attributes his current sense of humor to a young encounter with men on work release and Ike is too tired to make love at night. Dax and Ike do impressions of nearly every human and they both agree that the most terrible experiences make the best stories.
Kathryn Hahn (Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Step Brothers, Bad Moms, Transparent) is an American actress, comedian and special soul. Kathryn sits down with the Armchair Expert to talk about her early experience with facades and vulnerability, she discusses the different facets of monogamy and she enlightens us on her young obsession with the Amish. Dax and Kathryn fall in love with each other over their shared taste in music, they discuss defensiveness in the current political climate and they find closure and healing on a previous awkward interaction. Monica battles some demons while Dax battles some gas in the fact check.
Listen to an exclusive preview of Ellen on the Go: http://www.wondery.fm/dax
In this episode of Experts on Expert, the Armchair Expert speaks with broadcast journalist and Dateline correspondent Keith Morrison about the difference between Canadian journalism and American journalism, his reluctance to appear self-aggrandizing and his most haunting experience as a journalist. Dax praises Keith's spectacular ability to craft language and Keith tells the story of how he cut off his thumb. The two discuss the impossible role of a step-parent, the correct way to evade spousal homicide and the duality of career ambition.
Matthew Lillard (Serial Mom, Scream, Scooby Doo, The Descendants, Good Girls) is an American actor, voice actor, director, producer and human lighthouse. Matthew sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his early experience as a mime named TTAM, having to reinvent his life after an inexplicable period of not working and he labels his ultimate pursuit to remain artistic. Dax decides Matthew was the right man to date the love of his life and Matthew tells the story of how he was cast as the man who stole George Clooney's wife. The two of them travel down memory lane in a sweet recount of their love affair despite Matthew's insistence that they would never remain friends after Without A Paddle.
Jason Bateman (Arrested Development, Silver Spoons, Juno, Ozark) is an American actor, director, producer and longtime friend of the Armchair Expert. Jason sits down with Dax to discuss tales of sobriety, parenthood and the formula for a deadpan delivery. Jason reveals his many idiosyncrasies and Dax credits Jason for proposing to Kristen. The two of them chat about their mutual ex-scumbaggery, they reminisce on Dax's nude scene in This is Where I Leave You and Dax defends his unique style of wiping his butt.
In this special FARGO combo episode of Armchair Expert, Colin Hanks (Orange County, King Kong, Life In Pieces) and Allison Tolman (Downward Dog, Krampus, Good Girls) sit down with the armchair expert to discuss one of Dax and Monica's favorite TV shows, Fargo. Colin discusses the balance between work and family, how he was almost cast as Dax's role in Zathura and the misconceptions people assume about his life and childhood. Allison talks about what it was like doing press with an animal, her relationship to fame and she shares her experience with depression. Monica and Dax fact check out of Austin, TX where they discuss the world record for treading water.
Seth Rogen (Freaks and Geeks, Knocked Up, Superbad, Pineapple Express, Steve Jobs) is a Canadian actor, voice actor, comedian, writer, producer, director and one of the most prolific humans to walk into the attic. Seth sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss how karate gave him an incongruous level of confidence, he talks about his relationship to marijuana and doing stand up comedy at the age of 13. Dax commends Seth's healthy relationship with money and Seth shares his personal feelings on the Sony hack. The two of them discuss working with their wives, Seth details the benefits of not procreating and Dax shares a story in which he passed up an opportunity to audition for The 40-Year-Old Virgin.
Vincent D’Onofrio (Full Metal Jacket, Daredevil, Law & Order: Criminal Intent) is an American actor, producer and one of Dax’s acting heroes. Vincent sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his struggle during childhood, the series of events that led to Full Metal Jacket and his aversion to sports metaphors. Dax refuses to accept he wasn’t cast in Vincent’s movie and Vincent is disturbed by the dog print in the attic. They talk about their mutual reluctance to owe others in any capacity, Dax implores Vincent to move into his house and Monica loves magicians.
Jon Favreau an American political commentator, creator and co-host of Pod Save America and the former Director of Speechwriting for President Barack Obama. In this chapter of Experts on Expert, Jon discusses his heartbreak on the 2004 Kerry campaign, his devotion to the democratic ideal of persuasion and he details his farcical experience sharing a name with the other Jon Favreau. Dax chooses to see America as two spouses in a rocky marriage and Jon shares the story of his first meeting with Barack Obama. The two debate whether it's productive to be inundated with current events, they pinpoint what distinguishes an average speech from a great one and Dax wonders if Jon is the Ma Anand Sheela to Obama's Bhagwan.
David Harbour (Stranger Things, The Green Hornet, Revolutionary Road) is an American actor and the man Dax deems the most masculine man to walk into the attic. David sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his proclivity for denouncing intellectuals, his fear that we are losing our empathy and his experience with bipolar disorder. David debunks the misconception that affliction is necessary for creativity and Dax details the mechanics of the microwave oven. Dax and David bond over the benefits of AA, their mutual feelings of self-loathing and Monica teaches Dax a new phrase in the fact check.
Mila Kunis (Black Swan, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, That 70’s Show, Friends with Benefits) is an American actress, producer and self-proclaimed armcherry. She sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her immigration to America at the age of seven, her commitment to exploring various roles and her personal evolution to knowing her worth. Mila talks about her decision to openly embrace her flaws and Dax is shocked by Mila’s startlingly high level of adjustment. The two discuss Mila’s relationship with her family, they share tools on how to avoid conflict and per Mila’s request, Dax shares a very intimate story involving Jello and an STD clinic.
Nick Kroll (Kroll Show, The League, Big Mouth) is an American actor, comedian, writer, producer and Dax’s favorite person to run into on the street. Nick sits down with the armchair expert to discuss his inability to stay awake, his first game night at Kristen Bell’s house and how his family’s wealth informed his current relationship to money. Nick talks about his most informative working experience and Dax shares his run-in with Mike Tyson. The two bond over a shared proclivity to say the exact wrong thing, they debate which car Nick should be driving and they discuss puberty in all its glory.
In this episode of Experts on Expert, the Armchair Expert speaks to author and humorist, David Sedaris about behavioral tics, and value of writing without preciousness and his provocative encounters at book signings. David talks about the authors he is inspired by and Dax tells a story about why he can't drink Pellegrino. The two of them breakdown the dilemma of sharing family stories, the current culture of sensitivity and their mutual path to sobriety.
David Sedaris -- is the author of Barrel Fever, Naked, Holidays on Ice, Me Talk Pretty One Day, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, When You are Engulfed in Flames, Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk, Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls and Theft by Finding. He is a contributor to The New Yorker and BBC Radio 4.
Portugal. The Man (John Gourley & Zachary Carothers)
John Gourley and Zachary Carothers are members of the American Rock Band, Portugal. The Man. They sit down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the pressure of following up a Grammy, dog sled culture in Alaska, and the value of paying homage to other artists. Zach and John give insight into recording artists they admire and Dax is baffled at their general lack of jackassery. They talk about the elusiveness of a pop hit, the highs and lows of being "known" and Monica and Dax reach new levels of indecency in the fact check.
Laura Labo (Dax's Mom) is an American entrepreneur, businesswoman and Dax's #1 love of his life. In this special episode, Laura sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her life story, the mistakes that made her and the struggle of raising a family as a single mother. Dax describes the many reasons he loves her and Laura talks about the recent death of her husband. The two of them travel down memory lane in a delightful and endearing lovefest in which they talk about Laura's bouts with depression, the impetus for Dax's love addiction and the exact degree of ugliness to which Dax was as a baby.
Mae Whitman (Parenthood, Perks of Being a Wallflower, Hope Floats, Good Girls) is an American actress and singer, but paramount to all of that she is Dax's sweet bebe. Mae sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her 28 year long career as an actress, how she juggled acting and childhood, and she doubles down on her undying love of Taylor Swift. In this lovefest, Dax gush's over Mae's superior personality and Mae talks about her experience doing full nudity on stage. The two of them reveal their salacious plot to have more scenes together on Parenthood, they reminisce on a very specific facial expression that brought the two of them together and Monica and Dax debate the tired topic of how to pronounce Caribbean.
Kaitlin Olson (It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Finding Dory, The Mick) is an American actress, producer, comedian and one of Dax's first friends in Los Angeles. Kaitlin sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss a childhood accident that sparked years of insecurity, her need for perfection and her struggle with balancing motherhood and work. Dax and Kaitlin speculate on why they got kicked out of the Groundlings, their mutual undying love for Rob McElhenney and a drug-induced adventure that ultimately resulted in Dax getting bit by a seal. Dax waxes poetic on the character qualities of Kaitlin's father and Monica and Dax debate the color of Lori Loughlin's hair.
Talib Kweli is an American hip hop recording artist, entrepreneur and social activist. He sits down with the Armchair Expert where they have an honest debate about many social issues plaguing America today. They touch on all of the topics one would generally avoid at the dinner table including race, gender and religion. In addition, Talib talks about his place in the hip-hop world, his parents' emphasis on education and his counterview to Sam Harris. Dax and Talib reminisce about an altercation they teamed up on, they talk about their mutual worship of Jay Z and Monica discusses the gender patterns she's observed from working on the podcast.
In this inaugural episode of Experts on Expert, the Armchair Expert speaks to author and child psychologist, Dr. Wendy Mogel about human patterns of behavior, the impact of social media on the family and the importance of free-reign grandparenting. Wendy gives advice on how to speak to children and Dax asks for reassurance on his parenting strategy. The two of them breakdown the moral dilemma of behavioral diagnoses, the role of fear and Wendy discusses a study that uncovered the one thing every child wishes they could tell their parents.
Dr. Wendy Mogel is a practicing clinical psychologist in Los Angeles, New York Times bestselling author and international public speaker.
Erika Christensen (Traffic, Swimfan, Parenthood) is an American actress and one of Dax's most beloved TV sisters. Erika sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss her journey as a child actor, her emphasis on clarity and recall, and the areas in which Scientology has informed her worldview. Erika details her days as a cyclist and Dax talks about his favorite scene on Parenthood, They discuss some of their earliest memories of one another, the importance of B vitamins and how bystanders could easily have mistaken them for lovers. Dax, also, reveals the location of the best grilled cheese on planet earth.
Johnny Knoxville (Jackass, Jackass The Movie, Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa, The Ringer) is an American actor, producer, screenwriter and stunt performer. He sits down with the Armchair Expert to discuss his early relationship with hospitals, his love of hillbilly culture and the mindset he enters before attempting a stunt. Johnny details some of his notable injuries and Dax reveals why he thought Johnny didn't like him. The two talk about the power of children to save their parents, the importance of discretion when picking your heroes and Dax and Monica discuss why it's okay to put your feet on the couch.
Marc Maron (WTF with Marc Maron, Maron, Glow) is an American comedian, actor, podcast host and the impetus for Armchair Expert. In this episode, Marc discusses his trajectory toward success, the license that comes with playing flawed characters and the particularly intimate connection between podcast hosts and their audience. Dax and Marc hash out an uncomfortable text exchange they had a few months back and the two of them question whether achieving success has the power to heal wounds. They discuss the importance of having a flexible identity, the emphasis stand ups place on paying your dues and Dax warns of the dangers of chess.
Bob Mervak is an American pianist, vocalist, songwriter and studio writer. He sits down at his keyboard to share some music and conversation with the Armchair Expert. Bob discusses his childhood best friendship with Kristen Bell, the experience of composing a movie score and what it was like to play music for George Clooney. Bob talks about the importance of enjoying music regardless of its technical proficiency and Dax serenades us with a very blue rendition of Silver Bells. The two question whether young platonic relationships are possible, they unpack how to navigate jealousy among friends and Monica deems Bob the most talented person she's ever met.
Joel McHale (The Soup, Community, The Joel McHale Show with Joel McHale) is an American comedian, actor and television host extraordinaire. Joel sits down with Dax to discuss his childhood diagnosis of “slow starter,” the trap of overcommitment and the hang up’s that come from working in reality TV. Joel impresses Dax with his stature and Dax opens up a controversial conversation about societal punishment. The two talk about the evolutionary benefit of dyslexia, their mutual experience with short-term memory loss and it is revealed (spoiler!) that they are actually the same person living in two bodies.
Chris Hardwick is an American stand-up comedian, actor, voice actor, television host, writer, producer, podcaster and king of the world. Chris takes time out of his impossibly busy schedule to sit down with the Armchair Expert and discuss his road to sobriety, the Dunning-Kruger effect, the entrapment of confirmation bias and why we should all be referring to bowling alleys as bowling centers. Chris reveals why calculating data is the trick to betterment and Dax unfairly accuses Chris of having high self-esteem. The two of them debate whether or not we are currently living in a matrix, the reason humans gravitate toward conspiracy theories and Monica adds Chris to her list of #MonicaLovesBoys.
Seth Green is an American actor, voice artist, comedian, producer, writer, director and one of Dax's true loves of his life. Seth sits down with the Armchair Expert to travel down memory lane and discuss how Seth got Dax cast in Without A Paddle, why Seth was the worst mark in Punk'd history and Seth's affinity for zero gravity. Seth talks about his experience as a first time director and Dax chronicles the 72 hours he spent on their press tour that ultimately led to his relapse. They talk about their mutual experience working with a real bear, Seth's fame as the Rally's Cha-Ching guy and Dax commends Seth for his unmatched integrity.
Katie Couric is an American journalist, author and general badass. Katie sits down with the Armchair Expert to talk about her new documentary series, the current societal emphasis on political correctness, the influx of confirmation bias and her personal experience losing a spouse. Dax debates the efficacy of empathy and Katie implores our listeners to rename her podcast. Dax and Katie discuss her watershed interview with Sarah Palin, the balance between work and motherhood and Monica and Dax, yet again, broach a fiery hot-button topic during the fact check.
Lauren Graham (Gilmore Girls, Parenthood, Bad Santa, Evan Almighty) is an American actress, author and is Dax's beloved TV sister. Lauren sits down with Dax to discuss her colorful childhood, the fear of slowing down and her lack of a maternal influence. Lauren expresses a reluctance to accept social media and Dax shares a method he implemented to curb addiction. They touch on their mutual appreciation for Parenthood, how Chaz Dean transformed the LA billboard scene, and Dax and Monica have an inane debate over the attractiveness of a capella performers.
Zach Braff (Scrubs, Garden State, Alex Inc.) is an American actor, writer and producer. In this doppelgänger episode, Zach and Dax discuss the unending hardship of being recognized as the other, the first time they were sexually aroused and their mutual love of Brad Pitt and Natalie Portman. Zach talks about his experience of growing up with therapist parents and Dax details his Shaun Of The Dead moment. The two of them discuss the emotional trap of dating “out of their league”, the uphill battle of being a writer and Dax regales the world with his Mike Tyson impression.
Anna Faris (Scary Movie, The House Bunny, Mom, Anna Faris is Unqualified Podcast) is an American actress, producer and comedian. Anna and Dax crack open a can of Redbull and discuss honesty in parenting, becoming the mayor of The Grove shopping mall and gender roles in partnerships. Dax reveals the details of his open relationship and Anna questions the potential negative effect of pornography. The two of them dissect the pay disparity between men and women, the expectations that come with being in a #couplegoals relationship and Dax tells the story of how they were both sent to Hawaii to eat a piece of chocolate.
Van Hunt is an American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer and one of Dax’s longtime obsessions. Van sits down with the armchair expert to discuss his colorful upbringing, his unconventional musical process and the connection between music and comedy. The two of them bond over a history of strong mothers and they ask the question scholars have been debating since the beginning of time: are blind people really blind? Van explains his acceptance of never fitting into a box and Dax practically croaks as Van sings live for the podcast. Monica and Dax debate a controversial topic during the fact check and yet they still like each other at the end of it. Thus, proving the impossible- respectful disagreement can exist!
Ellen DeGeneres (Ellen, The Ellen DeGeneres show) is an American comedian, daytime talk show host, actress, writer, producer and one of Dax’s true loves. Ellen sits down with Dax in her podcast debut to discuss getting invited to Johnny Carson’s couch, reinventing a career at age 45 and the fall out of her public coming out. Dax admits men are disgusting and Ellen reveals she questioned whether she would make it to adulthood. They talk about what its like to be an unintentional advocate for an entire community, the need to be free from secrets and Dax makes a public declaration that he’d like to kiss Ellen more.
Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation, Big Little Lies, Step Brothers) is an actor, producer and genuinely one of the nicest people Dax has ever hated. Adam sits down with the armchair expert to discuss how he fell backwards into comedy after seeking a career in dramatic acting, his hero worship of Spike Lee and the two of them discuss why they had a mutual unappreciation for the other before they met. Dax tells the story of how he unpredictably ended up on Letterman and Adam speaks about his struggle with self-worth and recognizability. They examine their differing perspectives on being a younger sibling, Dax commends Adam for taking on projects he loves and they both agree, unequivocally, that Will Ferrell is the greatest.
Pete Wentz (Fall Out Boy) is an American musician and the kindest rock star Dax has ever known. In this episode of Armchair Expert, Pete sits down with Dax to examine his journey as a young musician, he explains how his son pulled him out of a depression and he tells the story of how James Gandolfini accidentally promoted his new bar. Dax talks about hitting his rock bottom in Hawaii and Pete reveals his connection to Muhammad Ali. They explore what it’s like to be a normal person turned role model, the inevitable infantilization that accompanies fame, how to balance artistic integrity and supplying a product, and Dax struggles to uncover Fall Out Boy’s vice.
Jimmy Kimmel (Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Man Show, Win Ben Stein's Money) is a late night host, comedian and one of Dax's best friends who he never sees. In this episode of Armchair Expert, Dax and Jimmy discuss the origin of Jimmy Kimmel Live and why tomatoes are fascinating. Jimmy recounts how he accidentally learned to play the clarinet, the time he willed a tsunami into existence and he reveals Dax's next birthday present. Dax talks about his scariest adult moment to date and how Jimmy is getting better looking by the second. They discuss the experience of using their platforms for political exposure and Dax re-lives the moment when he realized with certainty: Jimmy Kimmel is mean.
Joy Bryant (Parenthood, Good Girls Revolt, Antwone Fisher) is an actress, writer, model and played Dax's TV wife for 6 years on NBC’s Parenthood. In this episode of Armchair Expert, Joy and Dax touch on their favorite subject: race in America. They also discuss their sense memory of government cheese, how humans code switch to match their environment, the sociological experience of doing drugs and how to reframe negative perspectives of their childhood. Most importantly they acknowledge their mutual appreciation for sleeping with celebrities.
Ashton Kutcher (The Ranch, That 70's Show) is an actor, investor and the prime person Dax credits for his break into Hollywood. In this episode of Armchair Expert, Ashton and Dax discuss their time on Punk'd together, feeling stuck in the cultural zeitgeist as one particular role and the sisyphean climb to satisfaction. Ashton discusses commerce, art, and the importance of social influence in entertainment. They, also, talk about what it's like to be married to powerhouse ladies, the difference between pity and compassion and they delve deep into their mutual struggle against balding.
Kristen Bell (The Good Place, Veronica Mars, Frozen, Bad Moms) is an actress, singer, philanthropist and married to the most handsome man in the universe. In this inaugural episode of Armchair Expert, Kristen and Dax discuss what makes their marriage work and Dax recounts why he assumed Kristen had breast implants for the first three months of dating. Kristen explains her life philosophy and how it dictates her every decision and she warns people of why they should never sit next to her in a movie. The two of them question their impact on social media and Dax reveals the worst thing he has ever done.
Hi, I’m Dax Shepard, and I love talking to people. I am endlessly fascinated by the messiness of being human, and I find people who are vulnerable and honest about their struggles and shortcomings to be incredibly sexy. I invite you to join me as I explore other people’s stories. We will celebrate, above all, the challenges and setbacks that ultimately lead to growth and betterment.
What qualifies me for such an endeavor? More than a decade of sobriety, a degree in Anthropology and four years of improv training. I will attempt to discover human “truths” without any laboratory work, clinical trials or data collection. I will be, in the great tradition of 16th-century scientists, an Armchair Expert.