The Basement Yard podcast went viral on TikTok in October 2022. The comedy podcast, hosted by lifelong friends Joe Santagato and Frank Alvarez, has hundreds of episodes, but listeners found an exchange about Pop-Tarts to be especially funny. While the great Pop-Tart debate of 2022 was certainly hilarious, if you dig a bit deeper into the podcast, you’ll find that the co-hosts have had more than one battle over popular food items. We’ve collected a couple of the best examples.
Joe Santagato and Frank Alvarez argue over Pop-Tarts on ‘The Basement Yard’
In early October, TikToker, Ashley_Tropea offered commentary on an argument Santagato and Alvarez had over Pop-Tarts. In the clip, the user notes that the “build” of the argument made it special. Fans agreed. The video has amassed 21 million views. The clip went so viral that Today covered the story.
So, exactly what was the debate about? The conversation started calmly with Santagato asking Alvarez what his favorite Pop-Tarts flavor was. Alvarez noted that he liked strawberry frosted Pop-Tarts. Santagato found the answer unacceptable, stating it was a “basic” answer. From there, things went off the rails. Alvarez then said his actual favorite flavor of him was a limited edition Pop-Tart that was released in 2002 in conjunction with the Spider-Man movie, much to the chagrin of Santagato. According to CBR, the “Frosted Spidey-Berry” flavor was very much a real thing. A long argument between Santagato and Alvarez ensued. While it had fans talking, it was far from the co-hosts’ first food debate.
Joe Santagato and Frank Alvarez have argued about food on the podcast many times before
a month after The Basement Yard went viral for the Pop-Tart debate, Santagato and Alvarez found themselves embroiled in yet another food fight. This time, the co-hosts argued over what types of meats count as meat when added to a sandwich. In episode 369, “It’s Been Pee The Whole Time,” tempers flared when Alvarez shared that his preferred sandwich at Queens’ sandwich institution, Sal, Kris & Charlie’s Deli, was prosciutto and fresh mozzarella topped with oil, vinegar, and oregano. Santagato, whose preferred sandwich, the famous but incredibly gluttonous the bomb, argued that Alvarez’s sandwich “sucked” because there wasn’t enough meat. The argument continued when Santagato disparaged BLTs, claiming that bacon is a “supplemental meat.”
2022 is far from the first time the best friends battled over their food preferences. In September 2020, Santagato and Alvarez set out to have an entire discussion about cereal. In episode 258, “What’s Your Favorite Cereal?” Everything was civil enough until Santagato admitted it had been years since he regularly ate cereal. The disclosure set Alvarez off. He accused Santagato of “betraying” the cereal community. Santagato argued that the recipe hadn’t changed since he last ate cereal; therefore, he still had the authority to speak on the topic.
The co-hosts have also argued over fast food and candy before Alvarez became the show’s official co-host. A 2018 episode led to a disagreement between Alvarez, Santagato, and former co-host, Danny LoPriore, over Twizzlers and Hot Tamales.
How can you listen to ‘The Basement Yard’
Joe Santagato rose to fame on YouTube for his “Idiots of the Internet” series. Since then, Santagato has moved to podcasting. I have hosted The Basement Yard since 2015. In August 2020, Frank Alvarez joined the podcast as co-host. He replaced former co-host, Danny LoPriore.
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Santagato and Alvarez are childhood friends. Most comedy podcast episodes include stories from their early lives in Astoria, Queens. New episodes are posted every Monday on all podcasting platforms. Weekly episodes are also uploaded to the podcast’s YouTube Channel. Exclusive content and early-release episodes are offered to Patreon subscribers.