Alison Leiby and Halle Kiefer co-host ‘Ruined,’ a podcast all about horror movies.
The duo has conflicting views on horror movies; Kiefer is a horror film aficionado, whereas Leiby is unable to watch spooky movies but is fascinated by them anyways. In every episode, Kiefer shares the plot of a different horror movie with Leiby, and then the two discuss the film, “ruining” the movie. They talk all things slashers, home invasions, creepy creatures, the supernatural, and more.
Alison Leiby is a writer and comedian. Her work includes writing for The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, The President Show, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, and executive producing Ilana Glazer’s first stand up special for Amazon. As a comedian, Leiby’s stand up work has been featured on Comedy Central, and her humor writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Onion, Glamour, and more.
The Knockturnal had the pleasure of speaking with Alison Leiby about all things Ruined.
The Knockturnal: Where did you come up with the idea for your podcast Ruined? What was your inspiration?
Alison Leiby: I have always been someone who is squeamish and terrified of horror movies, but also someone who is dying to know what happens in them. Horror movies have great twists! And I want to know what those are! Thankfully, Halle is one of my closest friends and we talk all the time, so she would just tell me all about whatever movie she just watched and I wouldn’t mind at all that she was spoiling it — I was never going to watch it. And since most people are either avid avoiders of horror like me, or big time fans like Halle, we figured other people might be into it, too. In podcast form!
The Knockturnal: What is your least favorite thing about horror movies? What is your least favorite horror movie of all time?
Alison Leiby: I really can’t stand an actually scary monster/corpse/demon. I know that many of them are cheesy or not that bad, but the bad ones are…very bad. Stuff of nightmares. I actually enjoy suspense, but gore and dread are a big no thanks from me. Because I haven’t, in fact, seen many horror movies, it’s more trailers and posters that stick with me. And the trailer plus Halle describing The Babadook to me had me up all night in terror!
The Knockturnal: How has hosting a podcast differed from your experiences writing for shows like The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, The President Show, etc.? How have the experiences been similar?
Alison Leiby: The podcast is a place where I get to just be myself, which I don’t get to do as much when I’m writing for shows and characters. I can react and make jokes from my own perspective, which is ultimately the most satisfying comedy for me. And while of course the podcast from my end is more improvised and mostly reactions to Halle’s storytelling, I still use the same tools I do in a writers room to find funny conversations or responses to the games we play.
The Knockturnal: What is your favorite part about hosting a podcast?
Alison Leiby: First of all, I could listen to Halle tell me a story about literally anything, but I’m lucky enough to be friends with her and get that in real life. I feel a lot of comedy for me is done alone — either doing stand up or even writing on shows sometimes. But the podcast is something I get to do with someone super funny and we get to goof around on mic. It’s just really, really, really fun to do.
Ruined airs Tuesdays at 3:00 AM ET/ 12:00 AM PT. Each week they focus on a different movie, covering films old and new for horror fans, horror haters, and everyone in between.
Image courtesy of Ruined podcast.