Archive 81: Episode 2: A Night At An Opera
April 20, 2016 9:59 AM - Subscribe

Tanya calls to check in on Dan. Mr. Davenport disapproves of this. And Melody hears an otherworldly opera that speaks to her very soul.
posted by robocop is bleeding (3 comments total)
That lady's "music" really was genuinely disquieting. She was creepy, and I wanted out of there right along with interviewer lady whose name I can't remember right now.
posted by yasaman at 10:26 AM on April 21, 2016

I hope that the composer's music is a symptom of weirdness, not the cause for future weirdness. We've already had two podcasts, The Message and The Black Tapes, that have a Cursed/Killing Music plotline.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:53 AM on April 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

Okay, I'm sold. This was really engaging.

The composer interview was beautifully written: just enough of the absurd to be funny, but close enough to reality that one wouldn't immediately recognize it as parody out of context. That's a hard line to follow, and they did a great job. It has some of the same feel as Joe Frank's early mock-intellectual discussions (Either/Or, or A Call in the Night.) I loved it.

Like most of these programs, it still feels a bit tightly scripted, with a 1940's "now we join our hero" radio play tone that I have to work pretty hard to get past. (Especially the boss character in Archive 81. It's hard to imagine letting him improvise a bit wouldn't improve the performance.) But, it's worth getting past. And it's clearly mostly a conscious choice on the part of the producers, even if it's not one that appeal to me, personally.

So far my experience with the Black Tapes, Tanis, and Limetown has been something of a mix. I find the first couple episodes sound very artificial and a bit off-putting. Then I get used to the production and sink into the story and really enjoy it. Then toward the end of the season I get lost in a sea of half-remembered names that were mentioned briefly six weeks ago and suddenly become an important part of the plot and find that I'm not actually following the story at all.

I suspect I'd enjoy them all a lot more if I'd waited a year and listened to them all in one sitting, rather than trying to keep up with them in serial form. Hopefully in a couple years I'll have forgotten enough to do that with fresh ears.
posted by eotvos at 10:35 AM on April 24, 2016

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