John Hodgman: Ragnarok

John Hodgman: Ragnarok
Genre Stand-up comedy
Written by John Hodgman
Directed by Lance Bangs[1][2]
Starring John Hodgman[1]
Scott Adsit[1]
Cynthia Hopkins[1][3]
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
Location(s) The Bell House, Brooklyn, New York
Running time 67 minutes[1]
Distributor Netflix
Original network Netflix
Original release June 20, 2013 (2013-06-20)
External links

John Hodgman: Ragnarok is an American Netflix original comedy special starring John Hodgman and directed by Lance Bangs.[2][3][4] The special features music from Cynthia Hopkins.[2][3]


In 2012, John Hodgman toured the United States promoting his book That Is All as well as performing an apocalypse-themed stand-up comedy routine revolving around his interpretation of Ragnarök, the Norse end of the world.[3][4]

On midnight of December 21, 2012, Hodgman performed his last Ragnarok show to a full house at The Bell House in Gowanus, Brooklyn.[3][4]

Netflix, an American streaming media website, aired the special on June 20, 2013.[2][4][5][6]

"My main goal initially was to take this show that I had developed rather accidentally on the road. What had begun as a literally presentation from my book had grown into a true one man stand up comedy show with a beginning, middle and end that I liked a lot. I felt extremely lucky that right away, before anyone even had a chance to express interest, Netflix said they would want to air it, and from my point of view, that was perfect."

 —John Hodgman[4]


In promotion of his comedy special, Hodgman has appeared on Boing Boing's Gweek,[7] CNET's The 404 Show,[8] The Huffington Post's HuffPost Live,[9] People's Chatter,[10] WBEZ's Morning Shift with Tony Sarabia,[11] WCKG's Mancow's Morning Madhouse,[12] WNBC's Talk Stoop,[13] WFMU's The Best Show on WFMU with Tom Scharpling,[14] WNYC's The Leonard Lopate Show,[15] and You Made It Weird with Pete Holmes.[16]

Hodgman has also buzz-marketed John Hodgman: Ragnarok on his podcast Judge John Hodgman.[17]

Ragnarok Survival Kit

Contents of John Hodgman: Ragnarok.

In December 17, 2013, John Hodgman made available a special DVD package (designed by Jessica Hische) limited to 500 that contains an extended cut of John Hodgman: Ragnarok as well as:[18]

The extended cut includes scenes featuring Ira Glass, Tom Scharpling, and Andrew Sullivan; and a scene where Hodgman calls Greenfield, Massachusetts "a shit-hole."[18] In December 21, 2013, the newspaper The Recorder published his apology to the town.[19]


Tuyet Nguyen of The A.V. Club gave it a "B+" calling it "unconventional" citing "Despite this complicated setup, Ragnarok boils down to Hodgman doing what he does best: acting pompous."[22] Marah Eakin of The A.V. Club ranked John Hodgman: Ragnarok first in their list of "best comedy albums and specials of 2013."[23] Mark Frauenfelder of Boing Boing said he "enjoyed very much."[7]

Eric Limer of Gizmodo called John Hodgman: Ragnarok "no Arrested Development Season 4, but awesome little gets like this are what stand to make Netflix a real powerhouse of cool, but slightly offbeat content."[24] IGN's Joey Esposito listed John Hodgman: Ragnarok among "10 Great Netflix Original Stand-Up Comedy Specials" remarking that it is the "epitome of Hodgman’s offbeat character and a nice blend of observational humor and far more out-there laughs."[25] Chris Higgins of Mental floss called John Hodgman: Ragnarok "both smart and funny, and come on -- it's Hodgman."[26] The Oklahoman said they found John Hodgman: Ragnarok "more one-man show (with assists from friends such as Scott Adsit of 30 Rock) than traditional standup," and "fits within the Venn diagram sweet spot between This American Life, McSweeney's and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart."[27] The Oklahoman also notes that having the special on a streaming video service "makes total sense" since John Hodgman "has a specialized appeal and he devotes equal time to both highbrow and lowbrow material, which might make him a hard sell in arenas where subtlety is a rare commodity."[27]

Sam Gutelle of Tubefilter said "had the apocalypse arrived that evening, we would’ve gone out laughing" stating that John Hodgman: Ragnarok "has enough content beyond simple stand-up to make it worth checking out."[28] Aaron Frank of The Village Voice ranked John Hodgman: Ragnarok "#9" in their list of "Top 10 Stand-Up Comedy Specials of 2013."[29] Frank praised that Hodgman's "elegant command of language is particularly unmatched in the comedy world" but critiqued "the theme seems to limit the scope of material presented, and having seen Hodgman a couple times since Ragnarok was taped, I can say with certainty that he has some better jokes up his sleeve for the future."[29]


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 "John Hodgman: RAGNAROK - Netflix". Netflix. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  2. 1 2 3 4 John Hodgman (10 June 2013). "JOHN HODGMAN: RAGNAROK ON NETFLIX". Tumblr. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 Samantha Abernethy (12 June 2013). "Interview: John Hodgman Talks About John Hodgman: Chicagoist". Chicagoist. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 Terri Schwartz (11 June 2013). "John Hodgman on his Netflix comedy special 'Ragnarok' and what comes next". Zap2it. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  5. John Hodgman (14 June 2013). "John Hodgman Picks His 5 Favorite TV Thingies of the Year ... From the Future". Vulture. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  6. Bradford Evans (7 June 2013). "John Hodgman's Live Performance 'Ragnarok' to Debut on Netflix June 20th". Splitsider. Retrieved 2013-06-20.
  7. 1 2 Mark Frauenfelder (20 June 2013). "Gweek 099: John Hodgman: RAGNAROK Netflix Special - Boing Boing". Boing Boing. Retrieved 2016-01-14.
  8. Justin Yu (7 June 2013). "The 404 1,284: Where we're judged by John Hodgman (podcast)". CNET. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  9. Camilleri, Ricky (20 June 2013). "John Hodgman LIVE - HuffPost Live". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2013-06-23.
  10. People (23 July 2013). "The World According to John Hodgman - YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2013-08-03.
  11. "Morning Shift: Hawks madness...or is it?". WBEZ. 13 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  12. Mancow Muller (14 June 2013). "Twitter / MancowMuller: How does it get better? ...". Twitter. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  13. Talk Stoop (2 August 2013). "John Hodgman on New Book "That Is All"". WNBC. Retrieved 2013-08-03.
  14. "The Best Show on WFMU with Tom Scharpling: Playlist from June 11, 2013". WFMU. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  15. "The Leonard Lopate Show - A New Economy; "The Comedy of Errors"; John Hodgman; "Fatal Assistance" in Haiti; the History of Privacy". WNYC. 20 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-06-23.
  16. "You Made It Weird #163: John Hodgman « Nerdist". The Nerdist Podcast. 26 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  17. John Hodgman (5 June 2013). "Judge John Hodgman Episode 113: Uniform Code of Podcast Justice". (Podcast). Maximum Fun. Event occurs at 42:42. Retrieved 2013-06-27. External link in |website= (help)
  18. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 John Hodgman. "John Hodgman, RAGNAROK SURVIVAL KIT". Tumblr. Retrieved 2014-01-10.
  19. 1 2 3 4 5 6 David Rainville (20 December 2013). "Hodgman recants". The Recorder (newspaper). Retrieved 2014-01-10.
  20. 1 2 3 4 5 Barbara Chai (2 January 2014). "What John Hodgman Did After the World Didn't End - Speakeasy - WSJ". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2014-01-10.
  21. 1 2 Marah Eakin (20 October 2014). "Deranged millionaire John Hodgman answers our 11 questions · 11 Questions · The A.V. Club". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2014-10-20.
  22. Tuyet Nguyen (21 June 2013). "John Hodgman: Ragnarok - The A.V. Club". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2013-06-23.
  23. Marah Eakin (3 December 2013). "The best comedy albums and specials of 2013 - The A.V. Club". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2014-01-10.
  24. Eric Limer (20 June 2013). "Witness Ragnarok Tonight on Netflix". Gizmodo. Retrieved 2013-07-12.
  25. Joey Esposito (23 December 2015). "10 Great Netflix Original Stand-Up Comedy Specials". IGN. Retrieved 2016-01-14.
  26. Chris Higgins (22 June 2013). "John Hodgman's RAGNAROK Now on Netflix". Mental floss. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  27. 1 2 George Lang (24 June 2013). "Static: Netflix takes comedy stand with John Hodgman special". The Oklahoman. Retrieved 2013-06-29.
  28. Sam Gutelle (20 June 2013). "John Hodgman's 'Ragnarok' Celebrates End Of The World On Netflix". Tubefilter. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
  29. 1 2 Aaron Frank (20 December 2013). "Top 10 Stand-Up Comedy Specials of 2013". The Village Voice. Retrieved 2014-01-10.
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