The Bugle Wiki

Resistance is Futile


Offical Bugle Headline

The Bugle, Audio Newspaper for a Visual World, is the greatest work of comedic, political podcastery ever created. Misters Andy Zaltzman and John Oliver put out an issue each week, that will inevitably change the world radically.


Putting aside those nearly momentous points in history where early man had the epiphany of the “audio newspaper” concept and did nothing, there have been two examples of Bugles that may be seen as precursors to the current Bugle.

Audio Manuscript for an Illiterate World[]

In London, England circa 1150, one Sir Edmond Cornwallis Olive IV and local monk Arnie “The Stammerer” Zolts met and decided to try to educate the masses on world events. Because they knew most people were illiterate, they shouted their satirical conversations in the style of the most popular liturature of the time; manuscripts. Unfortunately most of these manuscripts were in Latin, which the average person didn’t know, (thereby negating the innovative manner they presented it in), and the establishment had a notoriously low view of critical free press. Despite their argument that their audio manuscript didn’t constitute press, the great endeavor was finished. Olive was not given a trial but was swiftly executed based on his comment regarding the Queen’s “spectacularly British rump” (the concept of a nation had yet to develop at that point and it scared many nobles). Zolts was excommunicated and exiled to a glacier in the Arctic Circle by the Pope, where he went on to unite and lead the seal population in a daring but ultimately futile attack on the dreaded wolf-polar bear coalition.

But the legacy of the Olive-Zolts audio manuscript continued thanks to a Latin speaking listener who thought their bit about how the Pope would probably be personally disemboweling anyone who didn’t take up the cross for the upcoming crusade, and consequently wrote most of it down, which is the only record of the whole deal we have. The man was Italian scribe Thomas d’Oregano, and he would take the transcribed audio manuscript with him on an unforeseen trip to the savannas of Africa; land of the Impala hoards. A minor group of Impalas that converted to Catholisism called themselves Cathimpalas would be greatly influenced by the work of Olive and Zolts.

Socialist Hate-Cheese[]

The other innovation that can be counted as a forerunner to the modern Bugle appeared in the 1890’s. At a Socialist Newspaper Convention in Cairo, the leader of a small delegation from Sweden, named Bartholomew Daniels Ignatius Magee, was inspired (his word) to start his audio socialist newspaper by a spirited debate with fellow journalists. This may be a bit of a stretch as the debate was more in the vein of Magee and his Cyclopsites (named in reverence to Magee’s single glaring eye, having lost the other in a tragic pick-up-sticks accident at age 7) being forcefully removed from the convention.

B.D.I. Magee and his followers, consisting simply of a deaf Lithuanian cartographer named Lennie and his cocker spaniel named Mr. Barkers, took to standing over the socialist writers, belittling their attempts to convert the masses to communism with the pen. After several hours of this, the soviet critic known as Boris the Bear, who was approaching 85, knocked Magee to the ground and told him, “Like you could do any better... goddamn Swede.” Magee was then dragged from the convention grounds by a group of radical German poets, never to return.

Magee then traveled to the Balkans, rented a shop over a dairy shop, and took to standing outside in the street yelling socialist propaganda at the passer-bys. Like the creation of Olive and Zolts centuries earlier, BDI shouted his audio paper entirely in Latin, though he didn’t have any reason to do so and by many accounts spoke the tongue poorly. At any rate the Bulgarians to whom he was urging to overthrow their capitalist oppressors didn’t understand him, and they probably wouldn’t have listened anyway due to Magee’s unfortunate choice to rent from a dairy shop whose name roughly translates to “The Aristocratic Haven” and also due to the well known fact that Bulgarians distrust those who don an eye patch.

BDI Magee died two years later, embittered and a failure, from a bad batch cheese from the dairy shop whose name was only translated for him on his deathbed. Lennie and Mr. Barkers on the other hand went on to write the famous work, Fantastical Frogs of Finland: the Opera, and developed the modern bowling pin.

The Birth of The Bugle[]

Andy Zaltzman and John Oliver, with the help of the comedy double act Oily and Schmaltz, first created the Bugle in the 1910’s, bringing two major innovations that hampered the earlier incarnations of the audio newspaper; an audio recording technology and English. These were added to the political and social satirical pillars of the others, while continuing the Audio tradition, to create a dynamic product that could be understood by the populace as well as listened to multiple times. Unfortunately the vestiges of the old Victorian society and the Catholic-Impala alliance kept success from Oliver and Zaltzman’s hands. The world just wasn’t ready for The Bugle, and the reactionary lobbies of the Pope and Impala ensured it remained that way.

But several things happened that made it possible for the Bugle to return. Firstly John moved to New York to work on the television show, the Daily Show with Jon Stewart, a move that was destined to happen after John accidentally spelled amour the American way, armor, during his primary school days. Then came the writers strike by the WGA, which gave John a great deal of free time. Finally the Catholic-Impala anti-bugle bloc became stressed to the breaking point with the alleged Catholic incursions into the traditional Impala grazing grounds. With the opposition distracted, John and Andy revived the concept of an audio newspaper for a visual world, this time in the innovative podcast format. The rest is history.

Sections of the Bugle[]


For more information regarding the effect of the Bugle on the physical world, see Buglology.

Fuck you Chris