It takes a very special person to defy the odds and expose corruption in big industries. It takes a brave person with the patience of a nun that doesn’t mind the occasional stonewalling. In this case that person is Brian Thompson, when he is not caring for terminally ill rodents at his local animal hospice Brian acts as an investigative journalist to dive into the one of the world’s most troubling mysteries. The mystery? Why McDonald’s suddenly stopped serving pizza in the mid to late 1990’s. His investigative journalism program Whatever Happened to Pizza at McDonald’s? focuses strictly on that; although he does occasionally discuss murders that could potentially be connected to the McDonald’s cooperation. Why did McDonald’s stop serving pizza? Why does nobody remember it? How did it taste? Follow Brian on his thrilling quest where he enlists the help of unsuspecting McDonald’s employees, spiritual advisers, ghosts and even the President’s secret service to discover the potential conspiracy behind McDonald’s pizza.
It didn’t take very long for me to get hooked to this hilarious podcast, with its mockumentary style and the host’s unwavering determination to solve a fairly simple question. Investigative journalism at its finest, the first ten or so episodes consist of Thompson calling up McDonald’s restaurants all over the world to calmly ask if they serve pizza. This quickly leads him down a rabbit hole of conspiracy and satire that leave the listener feeling like that one meme from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (you know the one) while trying to figure out where the hell this guy comes up with this stuff. I think what I love most about the entire thing is how polite Thompson always is. Time and time again McDonald’s employees, who are unamused with Brian’s antics will often get annoyed as our host presses for details and always ends each interview with a courteous “Thank you for your candor.”
All in all it’s a great, unique podcast that I love with every fiber of my being, I genuinely feel like anyone not listening to this is doing themselves a disservice and it should be quickly corrected. It’s a real treasure that deserves way more attention, I mean, can you imagine if this guy got so popular he was able to do live shows? Thompson calling up poor, unsuspecting McDonald’s employees? Entertainment at its finest. Whatever Happened to Pizza at McDonald’s currently has 80 episodes, each ranging from 6 to 20 minutes long, that is perfect to listen to on a commute or at work or when you’re eating lunch at your local McDonald’s. I insist people looking for something new in a podcast consider Whatever Happened to Pizza at McDonald’s, the build up is slow but well worth it and (spoiler alert) you’ll get to discover how McDonald’s pizza tasted.