When I was in High School I was a nerd. There, I said it, and if I’m honest, I’m still a nerd but the difference is that I’ve realized it’s not something to be ashamed of but rather to be celebrated. I spent time in the library, I learned sleight of hand, I played a significant amount of cards, and yes, I played dungeons and dragons. For the longest time the stigma of D&D players (as well as AD&D) was that… well, perhaps it’s just better to show you:
As I went from high school to college and into The Real World (tm), I had forgotten about my D&D days but about a year ago I discovered an online, video podcast called Critical Role where a group of professional actors get together and play D&D. I was hooked on the way these actors brought their characters to life - it was amazing and it’s no longer solely attached to the geek subculture. At one point I looked at the viewership for the 9/28 episode and there were over 24,000 viewers!
I feel like I should mention the actors (and some of the guest players) since I’ve made such a big deal of them above:
- Matthew Mercer, the Dungeon Master, is best known for his voice acting role in Overwatch).
- Travis Willingham
- Marisha Ray
- Taliesin Jaffe
- Ashley Johnson, best known (to me) for her role as Chrissie Seaver in Growing Pains.
- Liam O’Brien
- Laura Bailey)
- Sam Riegel Guests:
- Felicia Day
- Wil Wheaton
- John Heder (pictured above as Napoleon Dynamite)
- Darin De Paul
- Joe Manganiello, best known for his role as Alcide Herveaux on True Blood.
Matt Mercer also DMs for a Nerdist show called CelebriD&D which has featured such celebrities as Vin Diesel, Joe Manganiello, and John Bradley (best known as Samwell Tarly in Game of Thrones) playing D&D.
In short, Dungeons & Dragons is not just for nerds anymore!