In a dark world ‘Forest Guide’ lights the way.

Forest Guide is a four-part magical realism fiction podcast from Crossroad Stations, written and directed by Jim Robbie and the Wanderers‘ Jack Pevyhouse. The show follows a night in the life of Shiloh (Pevyhouse), a bartending grad student (and ex-poet) who has lost his way in life. That is, until one night when the titular Forest Guide (Julia Schifni) shows up to get Shiloh back on track.

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Beach Too Sandy, Water Too Wet: reviewing the reviews.

Any time you click away from the page for a product or business on the internet without looking at the reviews you are doing yourself a disservice. While the rest of the world ticks along at its normal breakneck pace a beautiful, unappreciated artform matures with every passing second: the pissed-off reviewer. Beach Too Sandy, Water Too Wet is a new podcast purpose-built to read you some of the choicest examples.

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Mount Olympus University: Where Gods Have Midterms

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There’s a slight chance very few people will actually read this review in full. If you’re anything like me just hearing the mere premise of this show will cause you to lose focus in your scramble to subscribe and start listening to this delightful show.

Mount Olympus University is an audio fiction series set on a peculiar college campus where the student body and faculty all have unique abilities. That is, except for Pandora, who is there on a full ride scholarship (that she didn’t apply for). The show begins with Pandora stumbling across an abandoned student radio station deep within the ever-changing hallways of MOU.

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The End of Time & Other Bothers | First Impressions

EOT_promocard_apr15The End of Time & Other Bothers is an improvised role-playing game set in the fantasy universe of popular medieval fantasy podcast Alba Salix, Royal Physician. Launching the same day as this article’s publication, this role-playing game podcast is far closer to a traditional audio-drama at the DNA level than your bog-standard tabletop RPG podcast, and that is a fantastic thing.

Before I dive in, a quick disclaimer: This will probably be one of the more unique takes on The End of Time & Other Bothers.  Why? I’m one of the few people left alive who love quality audio dramas, have a soft spot for sword ‘n sorcery, and dig a diverse cast who hasn’t heard a single second of Alba Salix or either of its spin-off shows.  Continue reading

Feeling alone at ‘Station Blue’ | First Impressions

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It’s time to get cold, real cold. Today I’m talking about the new isolationist horror audio drama Station Blue. This will probably be the most first-impressiony-est of my first impressions as there are only two full episodes (and three prologue shorts) released as of this writing.

Station Blue is set in a location I’m quite shocked more podcasts haven’t taken advantage of yet: Antarctica. Not only that, but Antarctica during the harsh winter when no planes can get in or out in the event of an emergency. The idea of being completely stranded in a barren wasteland of snow and harsh winds is rife for horror potential, especially when one throws a creepy/mysterious research station into the mix.  Continue reading

First Impressions: The Phenomenon

Occasionally I come across certain podcasts worthy of discussion and critique, but the show in question doesn’t have enough published content produced to justify a fully-scored review. Early Impressions is a spoiler-free solution to fill this gap. 

I’m a sucker for well-edited scary things. Or at the very least, edited scary things. I remember as a teen lying in bed listening to the famed “first Star Wars horror” book Death Troopers on CD and getting the heebiest of jeebies from subtle usage of sound effects and music cues. All it took was a few well-timed clicking sounds and goopy flesh noises to get me binge-watching a sitcom or two for hours on end after to purge the spooky thoughts.

The Phenomenon hit this spot perfectly by trading on an imprinted fear of the Emergency Broadcast System. While it might not have the same impact in other parts of the world, I grew up on one end of an area known as “tornado alley.” Hearing that tone while a worried-looking weatherman tried to keep the county up-to-date was a summer fixture. That sustained tone is enough to make my blood run cold. Continue reading

Early Impressions: Magic Folk (Episodes 1-3)

Occasionally I come across certain podcasts worthy of discussion and critique, but the show in question doesn’t have enough published content produced to justify a fully-scored review. Early Impressions fills this gap. 

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Magic Folk is currently available on iTunes/Stitche

Magic Folk is a Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition tabletop actual-play podcast, much in the same vein as the D&D monolith that is The Adventure Zone*. The party consists of human druid (with an adorable owl friend), Claire the dragon-born wizard, humanoid bird barbarian Kiss, and human accordion-sporting bard Bernan. There’s also a human paladin NPC named Gomec, but we’ll get back to him.  Continue reading