Showcase from Radiotopia: The Polybius Conspiracy #1 – The Player
October 16, 2017 9:18 PM - Subscribe

Introducing our new Showcase series! In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game that is purported to have briefly appeared in Oregon arcades for a few weeks in 1981 before abruptly disappearing.
posted by latkes (9 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Hi guys! In my ongoing quest to talk with people about the millions of podcasts I listen to, I'm hoping to find others listening to Showcase, specifically this latest series.

1) Love the idea of Showcase: Some podcasts dont' lend themselves to going on forever, but do work as a mini-series of sorts. I enjoyed Ways of Hearing (here's to crotchety old punk rockers!) and I'm liking this one a lot too.

2) This series has a lot of interesting elements so far, touching on nostalgia (for me, as an 80s kid), nerd-culture, alienation, and possibly sexual abuse (that's my vibe so far although that hasn't been said).

As a straight ahead mystery, ie: Was there a Polybius Conspiracy, this episode seems to be leading to an obvious conclusion of, no there was not. But it does seem to be suggesting a lot of other kind of sad stuff going on for this one individual, and is a kind of thought provoking way of framing this story. I like it so far: I think it's creative and engaging and I'm definitely excited to hear more.
posted by latkes at 9:22 PM on October 16, 2017 [1 favorite]

I don't know what to make of this one. (Hello, I am a high-volume podcast consumer as well!) Like, I can't decide if it's metafiction? I recognize some of the "talking heads" as real actual people who have really actually done research about the Polybius urban legend but the "characters" are just pinging as off to me.
posted by soren_lorensen at 1:26 PM on October 17, 2017 [2 favorites]

did the Polybius arcade game kill JFK?? I guess we may never know
posted by roger ackroyd at 2:51 PM on October 17, 2017

Hmm well.. now that I've heard episode 3 I also wonder if this is fiction. However, I'm hooked. Maybe when it's done I'll post a "whole series" post about it if anyone wants to talk more - not sure each episode merits a post.
posted by latkes at 6:49 PM on October 23, 2017

Now that I've heard episode three, I know it's fiction. I don't like fictional podcasts, so I'm just annoyed.
posted by soren_lorensen at 3:54 AM on October 24, 2017

Yeah, uncanny conspiracies are a lot less compelling as a narrative device when it’s clearly fiction
posted by DoctorFedora at 1:40 AM on October 28, 2017

I just finished the whole thing, and had been holding off searching for it on the internet in case of spoilers...and it's confirmed fake!

I'm so annoyed. I really enjoyed it, but I'm still so annoyed. Argh!
posted by inertia at 4:36 PM on November 18, 2017

Yeah, it was clearly fake by episode two or three
posted by DoctorFedora at 5:15 PM on November 18, 2017

Hmm. . I really liked it. I thought the acting and writing were very good and that made it feel very real. I wish though it has landed on one story at the end. The way 80s video game (and heavy metal) hysteria was a dark mirror inversion of the real abuse and neglect of teens IS a compelling story, and I wish they'd committed to that story, but still, I really enjoyed it.
posted by latkes at 7:10 AM on November 20, 2017

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