Sickboy

Sickboy is a weekly comedy podcast hosted by Jeremie Saunders, Brian Stever, and Taylor MacGillivary of Halifax, Nova Scotia. The three hosts interview worldwide guests living with various chronic illnesses. The interviews are often conducted in a lighthearted, and hilarious way.

The inspiration behind the podcast stems from Saunders’ own experience living with cystic fibrosis—a currently incurable disorder that affects many of the body’s major organs. The three hosts are long-time friends who have said that the podcast was originally created as a way for them to talk and make light of  Saunders’ condition.

Sickboy has evolved into a regular series that brings awareness to the stories of those living with chronic illnesses. One of the podcast’s goals is to fight the stigma surrounding health and disease by approaching such topics with vulnerability and humour.

The format of the podcast is normally freeform. Though the hosts provide guiding questions,  the conversations usually go off on tangents. Guests discuss everything from their childhood to their sex lives and often punctuate their stories with jokes and laughter. Those who like more straight-forward or segmented podcasts may find this format a bit difficult to follow, but those who like to listen to more casual and organic conversations will love it.

When the podcast dives into the grimmer aspects of chronic illness, listeners hear frank discussions regarding death, discrimination, and life’s meaning. One of my personal favourite episodes is the seventh in the series with guest Layton Reid, who has end-stage melanoma and multiple brain tumours. This episode was originally recorded with the intention of providing Layton something that he could put in a memory box for to his two-year-old son. In the episode, Layton discusses his hopes for his family’s future, seeking alternative treatments, and trying to document his life for his son. I love the open portrayal of emotion in this episode and it highlights a common thread of vulnerability and candidness.

For anyone looking to broaden their worldview, Sickboy is a fantastic podcast that provides humour, emotion, and is an easy-listen.