Before listening to The Storage Papers, I never thought a podcast could scare me as much as The Magnus Archives. That the mind-melting, the dark-is-dangerous thrill it gave me was the peak of horror storytelling.
If you’ve been reading some of the more recent reviews, then you know we’ve pivoted to basically only looking at podcasts and books until the Hollywood strike finishes. And, while I have reviewed podcasts previously, I really dived into the medium over the past month or so. This has given me a much better feel for this medium of storytelling. It opened my eyes to the variance and breadth that’s available with audio-only narratives.
The Legacy Saga taught me an interesting lesson about tropes, genre conventions, and storytelling methods that I simply cannot enjoy. In the grand scheme, there’s nothing terribly wrong with The Legacy Saga, no glaring sin, but it was a slog to listen to for any amount of time. The minor issues stack up quickly, and what could’ve been a fun experience turned into a malaise.
We said this story would be whimsical, and let it never be said we don’t deliver on whimsey. Unlike last week’s tale of magic and a lost cellphone, this story will take a few parts to tell.
Black Tide was a different sort of book than I expected. The premise of a cosmic horror-style alien invasion was interesting by itself, but Black Tide marks the first “bottle episode” book I’ve ever read.
Much like last set’s Tom Bombadil, Eriette of the Charmed Apple begs for someone to build around her. But there was a problem right out the gate: Auras are almost universally known as the worst card type in Magic. They have a long history of not being played.
This is a silly one, folks. We’ve done many serious, intense, or frightening stories, but this is resolutely not one of them. This is a low fantasy, low-stakes comedy. Because even in a world with a unique form of magic, there are still very human, day-to-day problems. Problems I’m sure a lot of us have had.
Campfire Radio Theater is an anthology horror series tied to no apparent central themes, no reoccurring characters, and as a bit of foreshadowing: not a consistent approach to storytelling. I picked the episodes semi-randomly, going mostly off if the title or premise seemed interesting.
Civilized is a first for me as a reviewer: it’s an improvisational podcast. Meaning the actors are just playing off each other. And as such, I can’t really judge it on its plot progression. Narrative, themes, writing quality: all out the window. There really isn’t even a storyline to speak of yet, just a premise.
I screamed for longer than I thought I ever could. I screamed until I was sure I was about to die from suffocation if the bugs didn’t take me out.
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