Down and Nerdy podcast

IN WHICH a font is appreciated, and a man walks through walls while snappy music plays.

Briana’s pick: Helvetica

Helvetica is a very popular type face. So popular in fact, that it has a documentary AND a fake metal band dedicated to it.  The documentary is very insightful—you’ll be amazed how many places you see the font utilized. You are bombarded on a daily basis with Helvetica; from corporate logos (Gap, Crate & Barrel, American Airlines, American Apparel, Jeep, Toyota), all over New York City via the Metropolitan Transit System, and Helvetica is even the font of choice for NASA.

The documentary (aptly titled “Helvetica”) debuted in 2007, has appeared on PBS and is available on DVD. You can find out more info by clicking here. Makes a perfect gift for people obsessed with typography and graphic design.

James’ pick: 4D Man

4D Man” is an indie sci-fi film from 1959, about a scientist who is obsessed with being able to pass solid objects through one another. He is convinced this can be done by bringing those objects into a “four-dimensional state,” and sets out to build the infernal machine to do it.

The movie is notable for two reasons: It is the film debut of Lee Meriwether (rowr), and it has a totally out-of-place, what-were-they-thinking smooth swanky jazz soundtrack that feels so wrong and yet so very, very right.

Here’s an appreciation of the music in the film:

Audio MP3