As holiday cards begin flooding in, we all have a few that we look forward to. Maybe you’ll be getting cards with pictures of your neighbors’ adorable children, some cute wedding photos, and obviously some pets for good measure. But there’s always one card you look forward to even more: the yearly newsletter from a friend, family member, or distinctly not-friend reminding you of just how incredible the past year has been for them. Despite the fact that this newsletter could have been published as a novel, you read the whole thing, and marvel at this person’s willingness to blatantly lie to your face on Christmas. And that is what “It’s a Wonderful Lie” is here for.
Ashley Flowers (yes, Ashley Flowers of “Crime Junkie”) and her comedian friends Holly Laurent and Greg Hess have gathered these holiday newsletters to read aloud. From the humble-brags of just how incredible their year was, to sharing way too much information about their foot fungus problem, “It’s a Wonderful Lie” is either calling BS or cackling at the mess behind these perfect holiday newsletters.
While it premiered in 2020 with just 12 episodes, thankfully, “It’s a Wonderful Lie” did not stick to that original plan, because they are back in 2021 with even more unhinged Christmas newsletters. Episodes are a short and sweet 20 minutes, even though we often wish they were longer, and it’s truly one of the most unique podcasts you’ll ever come across.
Each episode starts as you would expect any podcast about the film It’s a Wonderful Life to start, which is probably confusing to anyone who read the title of the podcast wrong. A narrator begins the show in an old Transatlantic accent over twinkling Christmas bells before sarcastically introducing us to the premise of the show, which is to roast (or, honestly, fall in love with) the people who write Christmas newsletters.
It’s light-hearted, funny, and inexplicably filled with people trying to recruit for their pyramid schemes. Chuckle at the woman detailing her third divorce that only left her with a huge waterfront property right next to Soulja Boy. Fall in love with the family man who loves love, loves his son and his son’s new fiancee, and is letting his sister-in-law live with him (although he just wants some alone time with his wife, please). Absolutely lose your mind over the recently retired man who was inspired by The Sopranos to take up acting, created his own character within the show, and instead of repeating everyone’s lines to master the Italian accent (as his wife requested he stop doing), hear how he now responds to everything the mobsters say as his own original character! Oh, also, he has a new granddaughter.
“It’s a Wonderful Lie” has created the perfect holiday podcast from these perfect holiday newsletters. Hear our hosts read between the lines of these newsletters to find (or, in most cases, make up) the truths behind the perfect holiday facades. Some newsletters are boring, some are bragging, but they are all undeniably hilarious. “It’s a Wonderful Lie” is letting us all roll our eyes at them together, and that is the greatest gift we could ask for.