I am a passionate yet fickle lover of things. Halloween is my favorite holiday…until it’s time for Christmas, and summer is the best season ever…until I see an adorable pair of suede knee-high boots. And sure enough, here we are in the middle of my alleged favorite season, and I’m already creating my fall bucket list. Spoiler: it’s mostly food.
Some of the things that have been putting me in the mood for autumn are spooky, intriguing, and downright weird stories. This dark sci-fi thriller I’m reading makes me want to cozy up with tea and a fuzzy throw. Even on the bright screen of a kindle, a good book makes me feel like I’m tucked away in a mahogany-paneled library.
I’ve also been binge-listening to the Welcome To Night Vale podcast, a delightfully off-beat fictional public radio show, broadcast from the quaint yet danger-plagued desert city of Night Vale. Its lovable host Cecil guides listeners through everything from an all-mighty glow cloud taking over the town’s school board to his blossoming love affair with a scientist named Carlos. Welcome To Night Vale is charming, creepy, and enthralling — imagine if Special Agent Dale Cooper had broadcast live from Twin Peaks, and you’ll start to get the idea.
Radio drama (re-vitalized as podcast drama, as it were) is a unique genre of world-building that people have loved for nearly a century. With nothing but a soundscape, the listener has the chance to create the entire story in their own heads. It adds to the mystery and suspense if you are left without any visual cues as to what will happen next. Discovering podcasts was one of the few good things to come out of the ninety-minute commute to my first real job. I always love finding ways to squeeze more stories into my life.
Other podcasts in the intriguing-sometimes-creepy landscape include fictional alien/sci-fi podcast The Message, as well as Lore and Invisibilia, non-fiction shows that deftly weave fascinating stories. It’s a wide, aural world out there.
Do you have favorite radio shows or podcasts? Great vintage radio plays? Let me know in the comments!
Love and theatre,