Giant Bomb Food

We all have that thing that brings us a bit of peace, joy, and comfort. For some folks, it’s video games. For others, it’s movies. Some people like to go for a walk when they need to mentally check out. For me, it’s often pro wrestling. Over the years, though, my figurative comfort food has changed. More specifically, I have more than just one figurative comfort food. Sometimes it’s gaming, watching Blade Runner 2049, or reading. Other times it’s cooking — it’s funny how figurative comfort food and actual comfort food can go hand-in-hand.

For more than 10 years, though, podcasts have been my source of comfort and security. There are a few that I listen to regularly: Da Sharpshooters Wrestling Podcast, Monster Candy Podcast, and the Giant Bombcast — also, the Giant Beastcast, which was the east-coast spinoff.

On May 4, 2021, Giant Bomb veterans Vinny Caravella, Brad Shoemaker, and Alex Navarro announced they would be leaving the site at the end of the week. It was a heartbreaking moment to watch as the podcast was livestreamed on Twitch, and it resulted in an outpouring of support from fans and Giant Bomb alumni.

It seems that everyone has their own “what Giant Bomb means to me” story. Mine isn’t any more special than anyone else’s story, but I thought I’d share some thoughts anyway.

First, I’d like to briefly mention that I got to meet a few of the Giant Bomb crew members (namely, Jeff, Brad, Alex, and the late, great Ryan Davis) over the years at different E3s, which will always be a highlight and something I’m glad I experienced. I won’t get too into that here, though. Instead I’d like to talk about what made Giant Bomb in its current, soon-to-be-dissolved iteration so important to me. And I imagine that some folks might feel the same way.

To start, it’s important to talk about how Giant Bomb helped popularize personality-driven gaming media — the Bombcast, Quick Looks, and even their written content, which, aside from game of the year, was slowly phased out in favor of video. Whether you followed these folks from their days at GameSpot or just appreciated them for their work on Giant Bomb, it simply cannot be overstated that the reason so many of us love the site is because of the personalities.

Giant Bombcast

For someone like me who has bouts of anxiety and doesn’t like change, Brad, Vinny, and Alex’s work at Giant Bomb was comforting. I won’t sit here and tell you that I listened to every single episode of the podcast, but then again, I don’t eat a plate of birria (a dope Mexican stew) or a donut, which are actual comfort foods for me, every single day. That said, I know that when I need them, birria and donuts will be there for me.

That’s what the Giant Bombcast and the Beastcast were for me. Even if I didn’t tune in one week, I knew that the next week, those same shows with those same people would be there for me. I’d listen to them while cooking, walking my dog, exercising, and driving. I’d listen to those shows while editing blogs and images at my 9-to-5 job. It didn’t matter if I was having a crappy day or a great day — Giant Bomb ensured that I’d have a few hours of emotional security and a lot of laughs.

Now, no one really knows what’s going to come of Giant Bomb. Site founder and the baddest man to ever wear a tracksuit, Jeff Gerstmann, is staying. But with Brad, Vinny, and Alex leaving, it definitely feels like the end of an era. Beyond that, it feels like a band that you’ve followed for so long is breaking up — and it’s rough, I tell ya.

The fan in me who looks up to these influential games-industry pioneers hopes they go on to form a successor to Giant Bomb — because you can bet I’ll follow and see what they’re up to next. That fan in me also hopes that maybe one day Jeff can rejoin them — oh, and bring Jeff Bakalar and Abby Russell, too. (I’d love to see Ben Pack join, too, but he’s made his intentions to stay out of the gaming spotlight clear, so I respect that.)

No one really knows if this is the end of Giant Bomb as a name and entity, but it’s definitely the end of Giant Bomb as we know it. Because of that, I guess I’ll end this piece by saying thank you to Giant Bomb for being that figurative comfort food that was there for me when I needed it for so long — and thanks to Vinny Caravella, Brad Shoemaker, and Alex Navarro for being a part of that. I personally can’t wait to see what these duders do next!

I really wish I had a donut right now.

Donut Bun
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x