Arlington man beats hundreds of others for chance to create WBUR radio show pilot

Chris Monks will produce a radio version of his humor website, McSweeney's Internet Tendency.

Arlington resident Chris Monks.
Arlington resident Chris Monks. –Courtesy WBUR

An Arlington resident beat out nearly 400 other nationwide contest entrants to land his own WBUR show, the public radio station announced Thursday morning.

Chris Monks will produce “McSweeney’s Presents,” a radio version of his humor website, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency.

“I am thrilled that WBUR chose my idea for the Next Great Show contest,” Monks said in a press release. “I look forward to making a radio version of McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, and the challenge of not bringing shame upon my family of avid WBUR listeners.”

The “Next Great Show Contest,” which ran from March 19 to April 20, offered five finalists a chance to refine their show pitches with “Car Talk” producers David Greene and Catherine Fenollosa before presenting their final pitches to a judges panel that included WBUR producers and “Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me” contributor Alonzo Bodden.

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According to WBUR, “McSweeney’s Presents” will be “a satirical look at the world, from pop culture, to politics, to the playground, featuring work of the country’s best established and up-and-coming writers and comics,” who will be drawn from a pool of current McSweeney’s contributors. Monks and the station will produce a pilot episode for the “upper-middle brow” show, which will air this fall.

“We’re excited by the opportunity,” McSweeney’s Publishing’s Executive Director Kristina Kearns said in the release. “Chris Monks is a genius and we’re so happy he and the site’s contributors will have new formats to deliver comedy. The pilot can’t happen soon enough.”

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