Every week, Ted and Zach talk publishing, cigars, caffeine, and whatever else comes up.
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Episode 78, “Sultans“ (7/11/2017)

Back in the states, Ted, Zach, and Johnny Sheks debrief the Israel trip.


Episode 77, “Loose in the Roose“ (6/21/2017)

Israel, part 3. Terrible audio meets spectac content in the final Israel Bootleg Ep (this one not-so-live). Ted and Zach talk with Cliff Graham, Jay Casten, and a host of others. Excluse to the Roose!


Episode 76, “Unshekeled“ (6/4/2017)

Israel, part 2. Ted and Zach sit down on the shores of the Sea of Galilee with Cliff Graham and Jay “Johnny Shekels” Casten to discuss Israel and work through some interpersonal stuff.


Episode 75, “FERPA“ (6/1/2017)

Israel, part 1. Ted, Zach, and Kristin talk live in Tel Aviv about international travel, New York, and Marshalls.


Episode 74, “All Out of Sorts“ (4/26/2017)

In this episode:
  • Energy Drink Review: Mossy Oak Pursuit Orange
  • Movie Review: Code of Honor (2016, Lion's Gate, 106 minutes, but only 90 minutes when you skip the strip club scene)
  • An opportunity lost
  • Scholarly white paper
  • Penultimate chapter of re:raptured


Episode 73, “Can We Take You Higher?“ (3/24/2017)

In this episode:
  • Ted is an angsty teenaged girl and also a young, relevant dad
  • Smoking book hard cover
  • Cover reveals and dustjackets
  • Movies and shows that don't hold up
  • Reaching today's youth with the Nineties
  • Feminist deconstruction of children's shows


Episode 72, “Screenwriting 101“ (3/14/2017)

In this episode:
  • Bromancing the 'Trogges
  • Buddy Cop Movies
  • The Shack movie
  • #TedLetsUsDown


Episode 71, “Sprechen Sie Talk“ (2/14/2017)

Ted Kluck and Zachary Bartels are two authors/business moguls. In this podcast, they chat about cigars, energy drinks, Israel, movies, white papers, bad internet connections, heartwarming stories, and writing.


Episode 70, “Podcasting 101“ (1/17/2017)

In this episode, Ted has Zach Skype in as a guest for his J-term podcasting class, which they then record and call an episode.


Episode 69, “Men of Letters“ (12/22/2016)

In this episode:
  • Gut Check Anniversaries
  • @TedKluckQuotes
  • New Die Hard Observations
  • The etymology of “Butt-hurt”
  • Webis Contest winners

Episode 68, “To and Far“ (12/13/2016)

In this episode:
  • Cliff Graham talks Israel tours
  • Old phones and waterbeds
  • Lashing Update
  • Bad ear days
  • ’Trogges podcasting rollercoaster
  • Ted’s podcasting class
  • Gut Check Literacy Month

Episode 67, “Sold Out” (11/23/2016)

In this episode: We run the gamut of human emotion and indeed the entire human experience.

Also, Webis is giving away some used books.


Episode 66, “The One with the List” (11/14/2016)

In this episode:
  • Nothing about the election
  • The Magnificent 7 is the perfect movie
  • Ted eats produce
  • Things get weird
  • Are Ted and Zach complimentarians?

Episode 65, “Seedy Guys” (11/1/2016)

In this episode:
  • CDs, VHS, and Beta Max
  • Ranking the Die Hard Movies
  • Energy drink review: Amp Strawberry Limeaid
  • Halloween costumes as a grownup
  • Ted is 109% heterosexual
  • Frank Turk: In Memorium
  • Re:raptured chapter 28, “The New Cool”

Episode 64, “Is It DEAD?” (10/21/2016)

In this episode:
  • Old man habits
  • Review: RIP IT Sting(er) Mo
  • Gut Check conquers Sweden
  • TV Crossovers
  • Awkward Silence
  • Return of the Randomizer
  • You’re a mysoginist pig

Episode 63, “Tactical Lashing” (9/27/2016)

In this episode:
  • Trogges the Circlemaker
  • Impetus to Tweet
  • Cliff Graham Training Debrief
  • Gut Check Army Forced Relocation
  • Silvedome vs. Gettys

Episode 62, “A la Carte Blanche” (9/9/2016)

In this episode:
  • Ted is wasting away
  • Energy Drink Review: Celcius Sparkling Cola
  • Smoke Room Update
  • Silverdome Movie Update
  • 'Trogges Update and Speculation
  • Speed Round Topics
  • re:raptured chapter 26, “I Believe I Can Touch the Sky”

Episode 61, “You’re One of Them” (8/16/2016)

In this episode, Ted and Zach:
  • Get Busey analyzing Die Hard knockoffs
  • Savage Brain Toniq Tropical
  • Oughtta be hosting a podcast with that accent
  • Interview Bill Clay about Westwood Roastery
  • Read a chapter from their bestselling, award-winning, end-times novella re:raptured—now a major motion picture!

Episode 60, “Asian Dawn?” (8/2/2016)

In this episode:
  • Yerba Mate Culture
  • Chris Walken reads some tweets
  • Cigar review: Rocky Patel The Edge a10
  • Naming the new Cigar Room
  • Would it kill you to smile?

Episode 59: “Card Table Time Machine” (7/29/2016)

In this episode:
  • Thighs Not Touching
  • Rasta Energy Drink Review
  • All Kidding Aside, Ted Wishes There was Time Travel
  • Some Raw Publishing Talk
  • The rest of re:raptured chapter 23, "Dispen-Sensational"

Episode 58: “Lack of Plot” (7/8/2016)

In this episode:
  • Writing Awards
  • A Negative Review of Swingers
  • Where is Chris O’Donnel?
  • @GutCheckLegal is Hilarious.
  • #getTedonTwitter
  • Monster Gronk
  • re:raptured chapter 23, “Dispen-sensational”

Episode 57: “Overkill” (6/28/2016)

  • A masterpiece of a one-star review
  • A super-confusing five-star review
  • Introducing classic movies to your kids
  • Introducing Ted to John Calvin
  • re:raptured chapter 22, “Overkill”

Episode 56: “When Straw Men Attack” (6/21/2016)

In this episode:
  • Praying and Podcasting
  • Podcast Deja Vu
  • James King Lays into Gut Check
  • Dusting off the Randomizer
  • Gut Check-Themed Wedding

Episode 55: “The Opposite of Umbros” (6/7/2016)

In this episode:
  • Villages debrief
  • Listener Tweets
  • Contest Winners
  • Umbros Update
  • Literacy Month

Episode 54: “Diving In, Going Deep” (5/23/2016)

  • OliveTree Gets Up in Zach’s Kitchen
  • Babylonian Rejection Slips
  • Exit 59 Update
  • Ted looks into the dead eyes of his former self

Episode 53: “Through the Transom” (5/18/2016)

  • Grown-up Birthdays
  • A love story from Down Under
  • James King attacks Gut Check
  • Potentially Sad Book Events
  • Nineties Movie Review
  • re:raptured chapter 19, “On the Run”

Episode 52: “Mass Media Literacy” (5/8/2016)

  • Stranded in JoAnn’s
  • Finding new ’90s music
  • Tiny houses
  • Ideal man caves
  • re:raptured chapter 18, “Enraptured”

Episode 51: “Podcast Reclaimers” (4/18/2016)

  • Trying to be Moleskin journal guy
  • The Happy Rant and These Go to 11
  • Church website sins
  • Gut Check Literacy Month, week 18

Episode 50: “Radio, Not Television” (4/13/2016)

  • Failed attempt at using basic technology
  • Chuck Webis's Randomized Retrospective 50th Ep Remix
  • The holy grail of old electronics
  • Pomp and Circumstance
  • Fuller House gets the Downton treatment
  • Modest centerfolds
  • re:rapture Chapter 16, “When You're Teddy Strongbow, the Game Slows Down Considerably”

Episode 49: “Yellow and Black Attack” (3/29/2016)

  • Minecraft is the new Pokemon
  • Sitting in rooms and listening to talks
  • CCM Where Are They Now?
  • Terry Crews can do anything
  • Loving bad movies
  • re:rapture Chapter 15, “Carhartt”

Episode 48: “Isn’t It Ironic?” (3/15/2016)

  • Ted’s new sport
  • Listener reviews
  • Is Altrogge the most interesting man in the world?
  • A musical relic from Zach’s past
  • Final Downton debrief
  • re:raptured Chapter 14, "Things Get Real"

Episode 47: “Beautiful-Baby” (3/7/2016)

  • Gut Check Dog tags
  • Pronouncing black Reformed names
  • Brittany Spears mics
  • A gross energy drink, reviewed
  • A Beautiful-Baby Baby Joins the World
  • Being post-evangelical
  • Gut Check Literacy Month, week 13
  • Do writers talk about writing too much?

Episode 46: “Context” (2/25/2016)

In this episode:
  • Soul-sucking conference
  • Bad Audio
  • Fawning Reviews
  • Football and nostalgia
  • Basketball, youth group, and gangs
  • Penultimate Downton Debrief
  • . . . Oh, and it's Rob Gordon.

Episode 45: “Downer” (2/15/2016)

In this episode, Ted and Zach are bummed and try to cheer each other up. It's honestly not that funny until they read Chapter 11 of re:raptured.


Episode 44: “Hackers” (2/7/2016)

In this EXCITING episode:
  • Zach does some “computer hacking”
  • Ted and Zach hack together segues
  • What/who is Cliff Graham hacking right now?
  • re:raptured chapter 10, “Seriously, Don’t Call Me Josh”
  • Plus, Ted DIES!
  • Or . . . Does He??

Episode 43: “The World Is a Vampire” (1/31/2016)

In this episode:
  • Ted and Zach again talk at length about Downton Abbey, while also being two men.
  • Donald Trump is scared of Megyn with a Y.
  • Bowling after sushi
  • Dueling Randomizers
  • Is Billy Corgan a Christian?
  • re:raptured chapter 9, “Hold That Thought”

Episode 42: “This Is How the Sussage Is Made” (1/18/2016)

In this episode:

  • What's lashed to Zach's bike?
  • Ted's movie project
  • New book and new promotion
  • End-of-year Booklists (unintentional Happy Rant overlap)
  • Making men talk vs. making men reflect
  • RIP Hans Gruber
  • Coining “impoignant,” “sadvy,” and “hacklashing.”
  • re:raptured chapter 8, “The Call”

Episode 41: “Guess Who’s Back (Again)” (1/9/2016)

In this episode:

Episode 40: “The Jacob Hale Ep” (12/24/2015)

In this episode:
  • A holiday celebration of some members of the Gut Check Army
  • The Gut Check Ball
  • A free cigar bonanza!
  • Speculation about Lightning7Wolf
  • A sobering realization about music and copyright
  • Zach gives Ted some pastoral advice
  • re:raptured chapter 6, “Rabbi Pastor”

Episode 39: “The Ear Infection Episode” (12/15/2015)

In this episode:
  • The unfortunate audio effects of Zach’s dying hard drive
  • Ted's rating on ratemyprofessors.com
  • Ground rules for hugs
  • Gut Check Podcast turns one!
  • re:raptured Chapter 5, “Human Interest”
  • Is Jack Chick still alive?

Episode 38: “Magnets” (12/7/2015)

In this episode:
  • Creepy vs. Legit Outreach Techniques
  • Bob the Tomato loves Ted
  • Shaping the Culture
  • Mission Statement Magnets
  • re:raptured Chapter 4: “What Are Your Options, Really?”

Episode 37: “Homeschool Saves Lives” (11/30/2015)

In this episode:
  • White Baby Boomers talking street
  • Happy Rant insider
  • Chaz Marriot update
  • re:raptured Chapter 3: Ironsides

Episode 36: “It’s Monday” (11/23/2015)

In this episode:
  • Hipster health food
  • Kayak Guy
  • Nigel Feaver
  • Sophomoric Indignation
  • Classic film adaptations
  • Ted's new book, Past Time
  • re:raptured Chapter 2, “Black Eyes”

Episode 35: “Strongbow” (11/15/2015)

In this episode:
  • ANOTHER huge announcement!
  • Kayaking for the indoorsman
  • Ted’s interview of Zach, without Zach
  • Ronnie Martin Happy Rant debrief

Episode 34: “Relaunch” (11/6/2015)

In this episode:
  • The Last Con relaunch
  • Michael Hyatt's hilarious tweets
  • Free writing as "promo"
  • Zach's failed attempt at tough love
  • Ted's failed attempt at boots
  • Smug Veteran Editor
  • New recurring segment

Episode 33: “You Take the Bad” (10/23/2015)

In this episode:
  • Bifurcated personas
  • The Rocky IV White Paper
  • The mystery of Blair on Twitter
  • Groundbreaking interview with The Church Curmudgeon
  • Cover options for the Gut Check Guide to Publishing

Episode 32: “Passion Fruit Is the Street Name” (10/16/2015)

In this episode, Ted and Zach discuss:
  • Men and their personas
  • Guru pomegranate energy water
  • Fruit (like, in general)

Episode 31: “Cover that Face” (10/11/2015)


In this episode, Ted and Zach talk with Joe Thorn about:
  • Beards and tattoos
  • Cigars
  • Guns
  • New Calvinism
  • Church planting

Episode 30: “Guru Energy Drink” (10/3/2015)


In this episode:
  • Dead books on Amazon
  • A “Latin back tattoo” energy drink
  • Swanky gala debrief
  • Gauging podcast success (raw numbers & famous devotees)
  • Publishing 101: The life-cycle of a book proposal
  • Blue collar work and the artist's muse

Episode 29: “Say Anything” (9/27/2015)


In this episode:
  • Dead books on Amazon
  • A “Latin back tattoo” energy drink
  • Swanky gala debrief
  • Gauging podcast success (raw numbers & famous devotees)
  • Publishing 101: The life-cycle of a book proposal
  • Blue collar work and the artist's muse

Episode 28: “Huge in Germany” (9/18/2015)


In this episode, Ted and Zach discuss:
  • Webis as benevolent patron
  • West Coast energy drinks
  • The Ill-fated Gut Check Comic
  • Reviews of re:raptured
  • Why Turk is no longer a public person, but is still a snake-killing ferret (his words)

Episode 27: “Orbit with Us” (9/11/2015)


In this episode, Ted and Zach discuss:
  • What to discuss
  • Putting the pub back in publishing
  • Coffee bars in church
  • Is Ted a hipster? Is Ted on HuffPo?
  • Publishing 101: Right of First Refusal
  • A return celebrity tweet reader
  • Space Church

Episode 26: “How You Like Us Now??” (8/28/2015)

In this episode, Ted and Zach discuss:
  • Being a “storyteller”
  • New books galore!
  • Proper award ceremony etiquette
  • Odd pronunciations
  • The return of Mark Driscoll

Episode 25: “Rebirth of GCP, Mach 2” (8/21/2015)

Our twenty-fifth episode starts a new chapter in the Gut Check Empire; you are all present for the re-birth of Gut Check Mach 2 (and puppet show).

In this ep, Ted and Zach reveal:

  • That Ted is, in fact, an old man with old man hobbies
  • That Zach is, in fact, a 52-year-old woman
  • That 85 degrees is the new definition of “brisk”
  • That there's no shame in a grown man watching HGTV


Episode 24½: “Testing . . . ” (8/19/2015)

Test Call: Ted and Zach test out some new call-recording software with mixed results.
Real episode coming this Friday, 8/21..


Episode 24: “The Cliff Graham Episode” (7/31/2015)

The Cliff Graham Episode: Ted and Zach interview modern day legend Cliff Graham about the Christian music festival circuit and the glamorous life of the road author.


Episode 23: “We’re Out of Order” (7/17/2015)

In this final-but-not-exactly-final all-Michigan episode, Ted and Zach discuss:
  • The mysterious “Missing Episode”
  • Tim Tebow and evangelical hope
  • Whether “Mean People Suck”
  • A possible new Gut Check project
  • Setting their sites high for the first podcast sponsor

Episode 22: “Our Worst Episode” (7/2/2015)

Our worst episode ever!
Having been monumentally bamboozled and disappointed, Ted and Zach glumly:
  • Review a couple cans of Venom: Mojave Rattler
  • Let a perfectly good interview fall into the chasm of limited bandwidth
  • Simultaneously introduce and cancel a new segment
  • Provide commentary on a Carman/Petra Teamup from '91


Episode 21: “The Wind Beneath Our Wings” (6/17/2015)

On this episode of the Gut Chuck Podcast:
  • Ted and Zach speculate, weirdly, about Cliff Graham
  • Why Kevin Costner is the worst actor of all time
  • Ted’s solemn vow to get the wah-wah-nah back
  • A conversation with the one and only Chuck Webis (over an increasingly rough Skype connection)
  • The official Gut Check summer reading list

Episode 20: “Taco Tuesday!” (6/2/2015)

It's Taco Tuesday, and Ted and Zach are:
  • Drinking Surge!
  • Talking with Frank Turk about his Internet persona
  • Discussing publisher royalty statements
  • Loudly eating and reviewing one dozen tacos

Episode 19: “Caffeine x 2” (5/24/2015)

In this episode, Ted and Zach:
  • Review a bottle of Jolt Cola
  • Explore a variety of '90s Christian music
  • Excerpt another chapter of To Hell with the Devil
  • Avoid discussing the Sad Impending Event

Episode 18: “On the Road Again . . . ” (5/14/2015)

Ted and Zach are out on the open road, discussing:
  • A heavenly piece of fine art
  • Christian sports biographies of the '80s
  • A new Gut Check book
  • Terry Silver's even-worse worst movie

Episode 17: “Grizzled and Fresh-Faced” (5/5/2015)

In this episode, Ted and Zach:
  • Analyze the Mayweather/Pacquiao fight
  • Showcase some more content from Chuck Webis Studios
  • Discuss author photos
  • Provide commentary on a 1980s Christian music video
  • Consider the age-old question: are floppy disks the solution to mankind's problems, or the gateway to Hades?

Episode 16: “Wha-Wha-Nah!” (4/29/2015)

In this episode, Ted and Zach:
  • Bail on a disgusting energy drink
  • Introduce you to the one and only Chuck Webis
  • Make some Dad-puns
  • Listen to Frank Turk talk about superhero sexuality
  • Yeah, you read that right...superhero sexuality

Episode 15: “Praise and Arrows” (4/20/2015)

In this episode, Ted and Zach talk with bestselling author Cliff Graham about:
  • Publishing,
  • Amish novels and severed heads,
  • Manhood, and
  • Introducing himself as “the most polarizing man in Evangelicalism.”

Episode 14: “Walmart-Famous” (4/13/2015)

From a settee in a sunroom, Ted and Zach discuss:
  • Writing conferences
  • How to spot a predatory agent or editor
  • A little Chaz wisdom
  • An exciting upcoming guest
  • Being "Walmart famous"
  • The phenomenal success of re:raptured
  • Collecting the cell numbers of big-time authors

Episode 13: “It’s All Happening” (4/1/2015)

Gut Check, baby! In this episode, Ted and Zach:
  • Talk at length about the worst movie ever
  • Celebrate five years since their first book dropped
  • Announce the release of their newest book, re:raptured
  • Chat with internet legend Frank Turk about his latest piece on TeamPyro.

Episode 12: “Electric, Joy” (3/24/2015)

In this ep, Ted and Zach:
  • Experience energy drink déjà vu
  • Extend to you, the listener, the exclusive opportunity to send us crap from your basement
  • Interview music legend, author, and church planter, Ronnie Martin
  • Inexplicably don't promote any Gut Check books and, in fact, don't even mention the upcoming epic release of their new book, which drops on April 1

Episode 11: “Waaaaait For It . . . ” (3/17/2015)

As the Gut Check Army gains momentum, Ted and Zach:
  • Launch a fan sponsorship program
  • Discuss an upcoming title fight
  • Talk about Ted's first book, Facing Tyson and his newest book, The Drop Box
  • Receive some presidential visitors
  • Shamelessly pimp a couple Gut Check books

Episode 10: “Now I Have a Podcast. Ho. Ho. Ho.” (3/9/2015)

Ted and Zach:
  • Announce the official formation of the Gut Check Army
  • Interview the one and only Frank Turk
  • Talk author radio interviews
  • Discuss the initial germ of Zach's book, Playing Saint
  • Host a vice president of the Nakatomi Corporation
  • Review a disgusting energy drink

Episode 9: “Wow!” (3/4/2015)

Featured in this episode:
  • A terrible celebrity impersonation
  • A discussion of different author philosophies re: blurbs
  • Downton season wrap-up
  • An embarrassing accidental text
  • A catalog of crappy Nineties movies
  • Gut Check's financial non-policies
  • Our new favorite listener review

Episode 8: “Don’t Call It a Comeback” (2/24/2015)

In this episode, Ted and Zach:
  • Discuss winters in Michigan (i.e. depression, insomnia)
  • Interact with some fan (and not-so-fan) podcast reviews
  • Hear about Ted's latest (rather unusual) literary endeavor
  • Give a sneak peak at some Gut Check bonus content.

Episode 7: “The Gut Check Army Wants YOU!” (2/11/2015)

Ted and Zach are back in the capital city, at the luxurious Gut Check World Headquarters, which is in no way a dining room. This week, they:
  • Review a rather nostalgic-tasting energy drink
  • Take a rare look inside Zach's briefcase
  • Talk at length about Downton Abbey, while also being two men

Episode 6: “Road Trip, part 2” (2/6/2015)

In ROAD TRIP, part 2, Ted and Zach are still on location at Timothy's Fine Cigars in Bay City, Michigan, where they:
  • Demonstrate how annoying it sounds when you forget your headphones at home and turn the trim up way too high on the mic.
  • Interview their favorite tobacconist, Tim Socier
  • Knock out the second half of the Q&A from Ted Kluck's readers

Episode 5: “Road Trip, part 1 ” (1/29/2015)

We're back with ROAD TRIP, part 1. This week, Ted and Zach are on location at Timothy's Fine Cigars in Bay City, Michigan. There they cover:
  • What makes a good, solid cigar
  • What it's like to encounter 1-star reviews as an author
  • The first half of the Q&A from Ted Kluck's readers

Episode 4: “Happy New Year! ” (1/1/2015)

This week, Ted and Zach set out to solve a crime, but then get almost immediately sidetracked and talk about:
  • Zach’s ability to make energy drinks a grizzled old-man activity
  • A reboot of an old Gut Check project
  • The OWN network and what it is and what you can find on it and why that doesn’n't matter

Episode 3: “Shut it down. Shut it down NOW.” (12/13/2014)

Special “live remote” supplemental episode, from the Gut Check annual Christmas party in the Nakatomi Wing of Gut Check World Headquarters (i.e., a different side of Ted’s dining room table). Listen as Ted and Zach, with special guests Erin Bartels and Kristin Kluck (the Saucy Broad) talk about:
  • Their favorite Christmas movie, Die Hard!
  • Gut Check’s five-year anniversary and the five-year retrospective cheesy slideshow/video.
  • A new twist on an already-new classic segment


Episode 2: “What’s Your RQ?” (12/10/2014)

This week, Ted and Zach talk about:
  • Their flowery review of the "RockStar Bubbleberry" energy drink
  • Reformed white guys and Christian rap
  • How to figure your RQ (Reformed Quotient)
  • The best places to smoke cigars
  • How social media determines your actual value as a human being


Episode 1: “Platform” (12/1/2014)

This week, Ted and Zach talk about:
  • Indie publishing
  • The origins of Gut Check Press
  • The new “platform-building” satire, Mega: Get Noticed All the Time for Everything.