Cat Chat was a radio talk show run in the NCR from 2277-2280. Originally conceived by the NCRPR as a talk show to appeal to the "younger demographic", what Cat Chat actually turned out to be what you might expect when you let two young people host a talk show with little to no restrictions.
Cat Chat was originally pitched in 2273 by two old NCRPR producers trying to figure out how to make a program pandering to the NCR's younger generation. After bouncing several ideas back and forth, they formed the basic premise: a talk show for young people made by young people! The two old producers drank to that, reveling in their perceived brilliance.
In late 2273, the show was greenlighted under the name Cool Chat and was handed over to Charles Brick. Busy with one of his other shows, Brick shelved Cool Chat until 2276 when he farmed the program out to a radio station in the Boneyard. That station was owned by one Avery Banks, the younger daughter of the Boneyard's senator who had no producing experience. Charles Brick would be credited for the program, but Banks had to do all the heavy lifting, like the actual casting and producing. Also, she had to have the pilot out by January 2277, or the show would be canceled.
Desperate to make a good impression and give her career the boost it needed to get her into the higher ranks of the NCRPR, Banks spent the better part of a year looking for her two young hosts. She found both by 2277. One, named Patagonia Flats, was a freshman dropout of the Follower's Boneyard Medical University and a "philosopher". The other, named Frederick Napier, used to be a bouncer at a club but also claimed to be very vocal on "the issues". Exactly what issues he was vocal about were unclear to Banks.
In the November and December of 2276, Flats and Napier became familiar with each other and started their first recording sessions, mostly scripted, trivial stuff. That they didn't like.
On Christmas 2276, both Flats and Napier mailed scripts to Banks, written separately, for approval. Afraid they might walk out if she didn't approve their scripts, Banks okayed them without looking over them fully. Also, Flats wanted the program renamed Cat Chat, or he legitimately threatened to walk out. Banks okayed that as well, seeing it as a necessary sacrifice.
On January 12, 2277, the pilot episode of Cat Chat was aired on schedule to little fanfare. But as it turned out, that would be one of the few normal things about the show.
Cat Chat was, at its core, an afternoon talk show. The only supposed difference was the fact that it was made "for youth, by youth". However, it was the two hosts, Patagonia Flats, and Frederick Napier, that made the show popular.Patagonia Flats was an existentialist (although he did not ever publically state it) and it showed during his time on Cat Chat. Flats often wallowed in self-indulgence as well as discussing hot button issues and the occasional seditious topic. Also, Flats was a casual chem user but did not take them to excess.
Frederick Napier, as loudly announced in the pilot episode, was a nihilist and made it known every opportunity he could. This made Napier especially blunt when talking about controversial topics, making him unintentionally hilarious to many people. For someone who claimed not to care about anything, Napier most commonly criticized corruption in the central government, calling the NCR "a virtual oligarchy" on several occasions. This led Flats to claim Napier was actually a libertarian, a claim Napier vehemently denied.
The show's basic formula was supposed to be that the two hosts, Flats and Napier announce the latest news and discuss it accordingly, with the occasional sponsored content and "special". However, the two often ignored this and went off on a tangent on something that they either really liked or disliked, as well as Flats sometimes "trying new things".
Pilot Episode (January 12, 2277) - The pilot episode of Cat Chat that was notable for being the first time Flats and Napier went off script as well as the containing a fifteen minute long rant by Napier on the "evils of oligarchy". Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
From the Bear's Mouth (January 13, 2777) - The first "real" episode of Cat Chat, discussion, on current political climate in the NCR. It is notable for being the first episode where the hosts disagreed on a topic with the two disagreeing on the legitimacy of Aaron Kimball's presidency. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
Settling the World (March 11, 2277) - Supposed to be a "helpful" episode first pitched by Banks, the topic was run with briefly. That would soon degrade into an impromptu discussion of what instrument should be your first priority to make upon killing an animal. Flats may not have been under the influence of chems but was drunk.
Disguises and Raiders (March 18, 2277) - Another topic pitched by Banks, it was intended to discourage people from joining raider gangs and to drum up support for the NCR military. Ended up talking about what faces are the best and worst to make during funerals, speeches, and sex. Notable for a fake commercial that the hosts snuck in during a break. Flats may have been under the influence of chems during the broadcast.
Get off the Vote (April 19th, 2277) - Originally intended to help educate the citizens of the NCR about voting and proper procedure for elections, the hosts instead talked about the unfair nature of the NCR's democracy and how the frontier couldn't truly vote freely with a strong military presence overseeing the voting. Napier would even go so far as to burn an NCR flag on set, though it isn't distinguishable. Almost immediately denounced by Warhawks in the Senate, though hailed by intellectuals, reformists, and small communities around the region. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
Farming and You (May 8, 2277) - The first sponsored content episode of Cat Chat about the Brahmin industry, Napier absolutely rips apart the sponsored content as Flats idly "sniffs". The later part of the episode consisted of an "interview" with a caged feral ghoul who Flats claimed was a veteran of the Sino-American War. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
To Be or Not to Be (September 22, 2277) - A topic pitched by Banks featuring a reading of several surviving copies of Shakespeare's plays, including Taming of the Shrew and Romeo and Juliet. This episode is notable for being the first appearance of reoccurring guest Mona the (Gen. II) Super Mutant as the voice of Juliet. Flats may have been under the influence, and Napier may have been drunk during the broadcast.
The Strongman's Ghost (October 12, 2277) - This episode was originally meant a piece of cross-studio fluff for a new Holotape. Flats instead began questioning the director's stance on the Enclave, and the treatment of their non-involved relatives by the NCR. Napier was more than eager to join in, stopping any hopes the studio had for a regular program. It is rumored that Flats actually used Psycho on-set to do his "meathead warhawk senator" voice, a claim NCRPR vehemently denies.
Bicentennial (October 23, 2277) - This episode consists of Napier and Flats celebrating the two hundredth anniversary of the Great War and the death of pre-War America. It is the only episode to be censored by the NCRPR for its seeming disregard for the lives lost. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
Mojave Musings (January 1, 2778) - The episode followed the First Battle of Hoover Dam with Napier and Flats discussing the pros and cons of the groups in the Mojave. The episode was supposed to be sponsored content episode for the Gun Runners, but they were only mentioned in passing. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
Theoretical Chem Experiment (December 16, 2278) - Debatably the most infamous episode of Cat Chat, this episode featured the two hosts doing "theoretical" experiments with various chems. Both Flats and Napier may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
Household Dangers (January 23, 2279) - Pitched by Banks after the death of a toddler who ingested pre-War poison became national news. Flats and Napier introduced the topic seriously, but then began taking pre-War pills and describing how kids would know what ones 'to avoid.' One of the few episodes critics didn't immediate hate. Both Flats and Napier may have been under the influence.
The Quaintest Little Town in California! (March 5, 2279) - A sponsored content episode centering around the town of Swallow Hills. The representative from the town advertises for potential tourism and hopefully membership in the NCR but is laughed out by the hosts for his inflated sense of self-importance about his town and himself. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
The Black Peak Debate (April 28, 2279) - The hosts have a serious discussion on the morality of the Oregon Brushfire Wars and Stern's Raiders. The episode also featured the return of Mona the Super Mutant in an interview the topic of Brahmin and the Master, who she did not know and proceeded to bullshit stories about. Flats may not have been under the influence during the broadcast.
Followers Interview (June 5, 2279) - A sponsored episode for the Followers of the Apocalypse, notable that both hosts do the Followers justice and support them, although Flats seemed sarcastic at times. The episode includes a passive-aggressive interview with a doctor from Boneyard Medical School. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast.
Kimball the Loon (December 30, 2279) - The last episode of Cat Chat, Napier directly threatens President Kimball and calls him "G.I. Blow" during a rant that takes up the majority of the episode. Flats stays quiet most of the episode during Napier's rant. Flats may have been under the influence during the broadcast, but he wasn't stupid. On January 4, 2280, Frederick Napier was sentenced to fifteen years of hard labor for charges of treason.
Although the show was not a smashing success at its broadcast, Cat Chat has gained a strong cult following after its "temporary hiatus." Although Cat Chat was blacklisted by the NCRPR in most states, fans of the show are able to rebroadcast the show in independent radio stations in northern California and Oregon. Some people have even made copycat programs, but none have been very successful so far. There was even a petition made in 2281 to bring the show back upon Frederick Napier's release from the NCR Correctional Facility in 2295. However, Napier's whereabouts after the breakout are currently unknown. Some rumors say that Napier joined the Powder Gangers while others say he is currently making his way back to the NCR to become a domestic terrorist.
Cat Chat led to poor Avery Banks' radio station being shut down by NCRPR and her being blacklisted by the company. Meanwhile, Charles Brick managed to escape blame due to Banks taking the fall for him. That earned Brick the eternal enmity of Cat Chat's fans, with one even trying to mail him a pipe bomb.
After Cat Chat's cancellation, Patagonia Flats seemingly disappeared. While some say he just became another vagrant in the Boneyard, hardened wingnuts see this as evidence of a larger conspiracy. Most would be surprised to find that he has remained in radio, traveling north to the remains of Seattle. His first few months in the ruins are not much more than a rumor, but he would emerge in early 2281 as the new voice of the Crystal Truth Movement. He has retained his chem habit; a trait smiled on by his new patrons.
Speculation regarding the creation, content, and cancellation of Cat Chat is common among fans. Despite the edgy and controversial nature of the show, it was a production of NCRPR, made on their dime and their time. Most of the fan conspiracy theories work with the premise of the show being some kind of a false flag operation or a lure for people who shared the anti-establishment sentiments of the hosts. Where theories differ is in the complicity of Flats, Napier, and Banks; though Charles Brick is almost universally included. Some portray Brick as the puppetmaster of the operation while others say his "farming out" the program to Banks was his only involvement in the show. A small minority of theorists claim that Banks was the mastermind behind Cat Chat, although Banks herself has come out to refute these theories on multiple occasions.
From the Show
- "No chems were used in the making of this program *snort*."
- ―Patagonia Flats during the "Theoretical Chem Experiment" episode
- "Now for you hep cats out there wanting to get a wham in your Bear Day cakes here's a hot number straight from mamma Flats; pig-rat blood. I know, I know, its definitely not a 'recommended' ingredient, but give a guy a chance. You find a cup of pig rat blood, however, you want to do it, and instead of milk you mix that in with a ground up Mutfruit and you'll be the star of the show.""
- ―Patagonia Flats, during a special holiday episode
- "The Brahmin barons got even bigger teats than their herds, with four to five council members dangling off each one!"
- ―Frederick Napier during the "Farming and You" episode
From the Creators/NCRPR
- "NCRPR supports a chem free nation!"
- ―NCRPR's response to the media after the "Theoretical Chem Experiment" episode
- "The format works precisely as we intended it to."
- ―Charles Brick
- "I think the interns may be older than the hosts. I have no idea why they let the inmates run the asylum on this program."
- ―Patricia Featherstone
- "Those two made me age twenty years in three."
- ―Avery Banks on the two hosts
From the Fans
- "Charles Brick can go eat a dick!"
- ―Angry fan
- "Man, radio nowadays doesn't take any risks. Not like Cat Chat."
- ―Fan with his nostalgia goggles firmly on
- "They say that if you play Mona the Mutant's episodes backwards, then Napier will predict your death."
- ―A fan that imitated Flats too much