Monday, November 23, 2009

Not Safe for Work

Written by guest star Adam Higgins of Kick the Squirrel improv and countless other stand-up and comedy theater collaborations before he moved to Chicago to teach his wares, this is the video short that made audiences most squeamish. Though absurd, something about the animated humping wireframe "jumped the shark." Thanks, Adam!
Get the latest video podcast here: Sodomy

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Job Interview

Nick Wells, the Phantom Hillbilly, wrote this comedy short while acting as a human resources director for Marketing Decisions. His contempt for authority is palpable, yet his sympathies for those who are gatekeepers for desirous hirees are perceptible too. Directed and edited by Danny Norton, starring Lydia Carrigan, shot after hours in Portland State University's student newspaper offices. The making of this film, which was recast halfway through production, was a comi-tragedy in itself.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Baby Sushi

A man returns from a business with a most unusual confession to his wife. Written by Adam Higgins, performed by Nathaniel "Hub" Hubbard and Laura Patterson live at Portland, OR's historic Jasmine Tree tiki lounge.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Bozar: Clown from the Future

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is visited with a warning message from the future. When he refuses to take heed, violence, profanity and a coerced sexual favor ensue. Some of Nicki Toma's most inspired weird sketch writing, and a genuinely bizarre turn by Scott "Hecktow" Klatt as Arnold and The Phantom Hillbilly, Nick Wells, as a media makeover mogul.
Get the first video podcast here:Bozar: Clown from the Future

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Baby Jack

Longtime friends and cofounder of Extra Medium Nicki Toma and Tatyana Zaytseva delivered sporadic delerium to the online video ether and are poised to do so again soon. This bizarre parody of Jack in the Box and other advertising features Fogotron and Danny Norton and a cast of hilarious kid's meal toys.

Get the latest video podcast here: Baby Jack

Monday, June 1, 2009

Nightly News

The Phantom Hillbilly and Danny Norton were once frequent contributors to Independent Tuesdays, a Portland filmmaker showcase with monthly themes and challenges hosted by Jef Draubaugh. After changing venues from Nocturnal to ACME to The Standard then finally, Someday Lounge, so many new alliances had been made and broken and so much attrition, that it seemed the only salvation of the scene would be to hand it over entirely to another generation, another breed of filmmaker. Which we did. They're all HD, better cinematographers and often sharper writers than we were. Here's an example: when challenged to make a short along the theme of nightly news, I had the goofy idea of lifting audio from news and dubbing it over the actions of a couple having dinner. Brilliant?

Get the latest video podcast here: Nightly News

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Cokey Monster

Mr. Children's Television Workshop gives Cookie Monster some time off to hone his craft. Cookie recommends that his brother fill in during his absence, but brother Monster does not have a predilection for cookies.

Get the latest video podcast here: Cokey Monster

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Ground Charlie - Shampoo

Nicki Toma and Tatyana Zaytseva collaborated on what they often called an acoustic Tenacious D tribute duo. I always thought they beat Jack and Kyle in the clever lyrics department, but that's just my hip, disaffected "Tenacious D is too popular to be cool" side talking.

Get the latest video podcast here: Ground Charlie - Shampoo (live)

Monday, March 2, 2009


Nicki T made this make-up commercial parody with Jihad Qutub at the camera and edit with her best performing compatriot Tatyana Zayseva. It features not one, but two rubber masks of former presidents. Which is creepy.

Get the latest video podcast here: Lashes

Friday, February 27, 2009

Two Minutes to Midnight

What Phantom Hillbilly could accomplish with a couple of industrial lamps from Home Depot and iMovie always impressed me. Here he manages to spin a yarn about protagonist Sage Negadeth going to hell, precisely where he's always thought he'd go when he dies. Why? Because he's so metal!

Get the latest video podcast here: Sage: Two Minutes to Midnight

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Revenge of the Sage

Longtime collaborator Nick Wells, AKA The Phantom Hillbilly produced a series of shorts for independent Tuesdays, which soonafter reran at Extra Medium's multimedia comedy showcases to a new audience. Their odd pacing and heavy metal humor were so well received that he wrote the screenplay for a Sage Negadeth feature, shot a trailer and is still pursuing budgeting it's eventual fruition.

Get the latest video podcast here: Revenge of the Sage

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


As the cast of Extra Medium dwindled, were replaced, dwindled again, the final throes consisted of guest appearances at other sketch ensemble's showcases and dredging the deepest crevices for funny video. This embarrassing nugget is one of the first I made using analog 8mm tape-to-tape decks.

Get the latest video podcast here: Little Green Men

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Against Free Speech

The cast of Extra Medium were so anxious to support Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry in 2004 that we made our own signs. We were then whisked away to a "free speech zone" far away from where supporters with official John Kerry signs culd see Leonardo DiCaprio and John Bon Jovi up close and personal. "Grrr," we thought. "This free speech thing isn't so free after all. Let's protest free speech with new signs!" We confused people, as would be expected. Four years late for a big, Democratic sigh of relief.

Get the latest video podcast here: Kerry Rally

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Help! A Bear is Eating Me!

Friend of Extra Medium Mykle Hansen performed a glorious reading from I Heart Everything at their final live performance in December, 2006 @ Portland's Bagdad Theater. Since then, musical collaborator in The Golden Greats, Danny Norton, worked with him on a book trailer to promote his latest comic novel "Help! A Bear is Eating Me!" Mired in pathos, the timeline follows a Seattle ad executive pinned under his Rangerover for 13 chapters, being eaten slowly feetfirst. This installment sheds light on author Hansen's panache for tall tales and misinformation.

Get the latest video podcast here: Help! A Bear is Eating Me!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Punk'd Lite

It's like MTV's practical joke show, only with safer, risk-free pranks. Danny Norton's first foray into editing with Final Cut Pro @ Portland State University saw him working up an idea of Star Can't Dead's Jihad Qutub into a digital short for their multimedia comedy showcase at nearby Jasmine Tree tiki lounge.

Get the latest video podcast here: Punk'd Lite

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Sex Therapy

Laura Patterson and Scott "Hecktow" Klatt have a counseling session facilitated by Adam Higgins. Performed live at Portland's historic Jasmine Tree tiki lounge, now a level plain of grass upon which cranes erecting a new student recreation center can entertain you.

Get the latest video podcast here: Sex Therapy

Saturday, December 6, 2008

James Bond: Cookiepussy

The final cast of our multimedia sketch show included Adam Higgins, who traveled East to study with Second City in Chicago and teach improv. He was reticent to play a "mentally different" character until it became clear it could be pulled off a a simple goon. Masterfully written by Nathaniel "Hub" Hubbard, who also stars as James Bond a la Connery brogue.

Get the latest video podcast here: Cookiepussy

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Polls Part 1

We know it's SO November 2, 2004, but this series of videos was shown on election night 4 years ago to cheer people up. We anticipated that every vote "would count" and that the election would have a happy ending.
Get the latest video podcast here: The Polls Pt.1

The Polls Part 2

We know it's SO November 2, 2004, but this series of videos was shown on election night 4 years ago to cheer people up. We anticipated that every vote "would count" and that the election would have a happy ending.
Get the latest video podcast here: The Polls Pt.2

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Polls Part 3

We know it's SO November 2, 2004, but this series of videos was shown on election night 4 years ago to cheer people up. We anticipated that every vote "would count" and that the election would have a happy ending.
Get the latest video podcast here: The Polls Pt.3

Monday, October 20, 2008


In one of our most elaborate live sketches (OK, Condos and Lawyers had real costumes), a boardroom of company cronies must answer the CEO's demands for new marketing strategies. Written by Nathaniel "Hub" Hubbard, with Steve Libbey, Scott "Hecktow" Klatt, Laura Patterson and Danny Norton.

Get the latest video podcast here: Custard

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Escape from USA

November 2, 2004 was a dark day for liberal-minded Americans anxious for John Kerry to turn the political future around. And he should have, too. Diebold delivered an empty victory as promised, so this short follows a disgruntled ex-pat who immigrates as a mail order husband.

Get the latest video podcast here: Escape from USA

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Plastic Culture

OK. This is probably the strangest film collaboration in my recollection. Portland, OR's Bear Deluxe Magazine and parent environment watch organization ORLO host a yearly film competition. What possessed us to spin the theme "plastic culture" into the story of rock monolith Ted Nugent losing his hunting bow is anyone's guess.
Get the latest video podcast here: Max Gross

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Vader Vacation

Another great Animation Schmanimation short courtesy of Cinema Queso's John C. Meyer, shown at Extra Medium's multimedia comedy showcase near the final installment (we hope) of George Lucas' prequel trilogy, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith.
Get the latest video podcast here: Vader Vacation

Monday, August 25, 2008

Blind leading the Blind

About all I can say to introduce this short is that my blind roommate pretty much suggested the direction of this storyline, offering to do as many falling and rolling stunts as possible. I couldn't see much in the Scruffers costume either, so it was up to cameraman/director/conspirator Crispin "Credible" Rosenkranz to guide us across busy streets via his voice. So it's about a half-man half-dog/guy in a fuzzy car seat cover who is a terrible assistant animal. Don't get too offended. We had a lot of fun making it.
Get the latest video podcast here: Seeing Eye Scruffers

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Scruffers' Day in the Park

Scruffers was a half-man half-dog creation of Extra Medium's Danny Norton for one live sketch and two short films. Actually, it was just Danny in a furry carseat cover. Featuring Nicki Toma, Phantom Hillbilly and appearances by Scott "Hecktow" Klatt, Dax Jordan and Tatyana Zaytseva. The costume was very uncomfortable. The idea for this short came when Portland was experiencing a rash of animal poisonings in public off-leash dog areas, then shards of metal to cut animals' paws.
Get the latest video podcast here: Scruffers' Day in the Park

Monday, July 28, 2008

Off-Off Broadway

Three-part sketch filmed live at Portland's historic now-defunct Jasmine Tree tiki lounge. Man wants to do "something special" for his girlfriend on Valentine's Day, but can't afford Broadway or even Off-Broadway theatre tickets. An unscrupulous dealer in eclectic knock-offs of Blue Man Group, Cirque du Soliel and Shakespeare tries to recommend a budget alternative. Written by Tom Wolcott and Danny Norton, with Steve Libbey, Scott "Hecktow" Klatt, Adam Higgins and Laura Patterson. Ends in typical sound cue snafu, to awkward effect.
Get the latest video podcast here: Off-Off Broadway

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Zither Bit

Filmed using a Tyco Kidcam, this grainy, silent B&W short is based on Gilda Agostinone's "Zither Bit," which was originally performed live at a Tulsa, OK Mayfest. Audience response was so positive, I filmed it with a different actress five years later. I always gave Gilda credit, but felt like a bit of a plagiarist. Hopefully, my performance adds a modicum of my own original input.
Get the latest video podcast here: Un Film Sans Sonido

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Vader Monday

John C. Meyer of Cinema Queso loaned this gem to Extra Medium's multimedia showcase for our "tribute to Star Wars" installment. He and a few college friends animated this and other bizarre shorts under the moniker Animation Schmanimation. This short features Sith Lord Darth Vader having a bad day at work, unappreciated by his Emperor and getting no respect in traffic from the denizens of the Star Wars galaxy.
Get the latest video podcast here: Vader Monday

Sunday, April 20, 2008

G.I. Joe Reserves

Filmed live at Extra Medium's monthly multimedia comedy showcase at Jasmine Tree Tiki Lounge, Nathaniel Hubbard steps in to tell Scott "Hecktow" Klatt and Danny Norton a few anecdotes about military life. The two boys are playing with sort-of action figures, which have an unusual back story of their own.
Get the latest video podcast here: G.I. Joe Reserves

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Vatican's Next Top Pope

Inspired by the passing of Pope John Paul II and subsequent scramblings to replace him, Dax Jordan, D Emanuel, Scott "Hecktow" Klatt and Danny Norton play papal hopefuls confined to a small apartment and sent to converse in a hot tub after too much wine. Parody of religion and reality television in one short, somehow failed to revolutionize the web.
Get the latest video podcast here: Vatican's Next Top Pope

Friday, March 14, 2008

Verizon Masturbation Minutes

Parody ad for vibrating cell phone ringers, put to inappropriate use as sexual stimulant. With Nicki Toma, Dax Jordan, D Emanuel, Lauren Sands and Danny Norton.
Get the latest video podcast here: Verizon Masturbation Minutes

Saturday, March 8, 2008


Scott "Hecktow" Klatt stuck with Extra Medium as wiriter, sketch and stand-up performer perhaps longer than anyone else. His oddball takes on troubled entertainers with problem material included a Russian Hawaiian singer, his Ken & Barbie "Jack & Diane" puppet theater and this imagination-challenged improvisational comic. Hilarious reactions to his audience's suggestions are a fond alternative to "Who's Line Is It" smug, competent professionals.
Get the latest video podcast here: Improv

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Original Gags

Painfully corny document follows two aspiring short filmmakers through writer's block to rolling on the floor laughing at their own mediocre ideas. First and probably best collaboration between The Phantom Hillbilly and Extra Medium's Danny Norton, guest directed by Crispin Rosenkranz with cameos by Eric Brockman, Wes Dilling and Jihad Qutub.
Get the latest video podcast here: Original Gags

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Condos and Lawyers

Performed live before a coctail-infused audience, this sketch turns the tables on Dungeons and Dragons' fantasy realm. A Barbarian, Elf and Wizard meet to role play and are chided for wasting their time "not doing anything real."
Get the latest video podcast here: Condos and Lawyers

Friday, January 18, 2008

Shirt Support

Phantom Hillbilly AKA Nick Wells' befuddled character gets new garment in the mail and must call tech support to figure it out.
Get the lastest video podcast here: Shirt Support

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Racism is Wrong

Extra Medium not only made a sizable collection of short films, they performed live on stage at historic, now-defunct Jasmine Tree tiki lounge every month for three years. Boy, those were the days, especially when dynamic writing duo Nathaniel Hubbard and Laura Patterson took the reins. This live sketch was a universal favorite, because it dared to be almost offensive without quite hitting any awkward "Ooh" moments.
Hub visits a long-lost relative, who by comparison is a sophisticate. He can't help but voice his bigoted opinions and gets all of his racial stereotypes wrong, to hilarious effect.
Get the latest video podcast here: Goat Racist

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Cannes Film Festival Documentary

Extra Medium cofounder Danny Norton once fancied himself quite the aspiring filmmaker, so much so that he jumped at the opportunity to intern at the world's premiere film showcase in 1999. That's him behind Roger Ebert, seated, eating lunch. What a goof. As part of the American Pavilion and Kodak's student program, interns served coffee, delivered newspapers, and in his case, care package courier.
Danny says, "Sure, we saw red carpet and stood next to celebrities at cocktail parties. The stars had nothing much else to do but stand next to the likes of us. If we weren't trying to photograph them or hand them a script, we were practically buddies."
Get the latest video podcast here: The Wrath of Cannes

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Darrel's Gone Wild

Longtime collaborator and gifted solo director Crispin Rosenkranz brought this docu-exploitation gem our way in 2004. Those who identify with Darrel's crude, bacchanalian lifestyle loved it. Others were confused and disgusted. But universally, the scene with his grandmother was hailed as pure genius.
Get the latest video podcast here: Darrel's Gone Wild

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Two Guys and a Drunk Girl

Extra Medium cofounders Nicki Toma and Danny Norton are joined by Portland stand-up comic Dax Jordan for a tale of excess and undress. One-half arty stills-film and the other half performed live on stage at historic, now-defunct Jasmine Tree tiki lounge.
Get the latest video podcast here: Drunk Date

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Drawing the Figure

Featuring stand-up comic phenomenons Dax Jordan, Richard Bain and Tom Wolcott, Danny Norton embellishes his life drawing class experience at Portland State University by appearing as his professor and coaching the class to draw the ENTIRE body. Weird entendres abound, and Nicki Toma and Tatyana Zaytseva made some really strange drawings.
Get the latest video podcast here: Drawing the Figure

Monday, October 29, 2007

B&W Horror from Ground Charlie's Nicki & Taty

Extra Medium cofounder Nicki Toma and longtime collaborator Tatyana Zaytseva produced this mindboggling parody to play during our monthly multimedia sketch, music and film showcses at historic, now-defunct Jasmine Tree tiki lounge. The Portland Development Commission leveled the 29-year-old business to make a fenced-in grass lot.
Get the latest video podcast here: Bee

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Blog is the New Black

After much contemplation, Extra Medium Sketch Comedy have decided to learn the dark art of podcasting their short film into the worldwide interweb, a series of tubes for the transmission of informative communiques.
We hope you enjoy this, the first, of what we hope to be many Media-Rich cyber-content digital mailings.