Check-In: Video Games

Nov 20, 2020

Jonathan Coulton's been playing The Last Of Us Part II, which puts players in a post-apocalyptic world of isolation and disease. It must be nice to be able to escape reality like that.

Heard on Rachel Bloom: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Sane Current Guest.

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This is Ophira Eisenberg from NPR's ASK ME ANOTHER.


EISENBERG: Is this Jonathan Coulton?

COULTON: Yeah. This is Jonathan Coulton from NPR's ASK ME ANOTHER.


COULTON: How you doing?

EISENBERG: You know.

COULTON: Yeah. You caught me right in the middle of something.

EISENBERG: Oh, I'm sorry. Should I call back?

COULTON: No. I was playing a video game.

EISENBERG: Oh (laughter).

COULTON: It's actually fine that you interrupted because I have already spent too much time playing this video games.

EISENBERG: How - is this one of these video games that goes on forever?

COULTON: So it's called The Last Of Us, or I guess...

EISENBERG: Oh, I've heard of this. People are talking about this.

COULTON: Yeah, it's a great game. It's The Last Of Us Part II, actually. It's the sequel...


COULTON: ...To another game. But it's one of these games where, you know, you're in a sort of post-zombie apocalypse world. So you're wandering around all these ruined cities and trying to kill zombies and not be killed by zombies.

EISENBERG: This sounds not relaxing.

COULTON: This is the problem - is I'm disappearing into a place that is so much more stressful. You know...

EISENBERG: I know. That's the thing...

COULTON: (Laughter) As stressful as things are...

EISENBERG: ...That's so funny.

COULTON: ...My fantasy world is even worse.


COULTON: So I don't know what I'm doing. Why didn't I start playing a game where you just sit in a garden and look at flowers?

EISENBERG: I mean, I play gardening life. I have flowers.


EISENBERG: And I get very stressed by them.

COULTON: Well, you have a big - you're an orchid person.

EISENBERG: Yes. I have many orchids. You know, five of them are looking good. One is testing me. One is testing me.

COULTON: (Laughter) One is seeing how far it can push it.

EISENBERG: (Laughter) Yeah. Every time I water it, we have a conversation of, hey. I go like, do you want me to throw you out?

COULTON: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: It's your move. It's your move, orchid.

COULTON: I'll do it. I'll do it.

EISENBERG: (Laughter) Yeah. Well, hey. I have a great idea - something relaxing. Why don't we play some games?

COULTON: (Laughter) OK. Here we go.


COULTON: From NPR and WNYC coming to you from our respective homes in beautiful Brooklyn, N.Y., it's NPR's hour of puzzles, word games and stealth zombie-fighting action, ASK ME ANOTHER. I'm Jonathan Coulton. Now here's your host, Ophira Eisenberg.

EISENBERG: Thanks, Jonathan. Today on ASK ME ANOTHER, we're joined by Rachel Bloom from the show "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend," and she's here to talk about her new book called "I Want to Be Where the Normal People Are." And we'll play some challenging games with "Late Night With Seth Meyers" writer Karen Chee and her friend, writer and illustrator and Twitter phenom Jonny Sun. But first, we get two steps further into our continued quest to have every single cast member from "Orange Is The New Black" on our show. So let's play some games.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.