I love podcasts. Much of my audio-listening time is split between podcasts and audiobooks, and that split is about 70/30 in favor of podcasts. I’d prefer it were closer to 50/50, but the recurring nature of podcasts means that, each time I step away to listen to an audiobook, the podcasts stack up. I really shouldn’t care about that, but there’s a little voice inside of me that wants things to be completed, and a stack of unlistened-to podcasts is anathema to that.
All of which is to say that, while I love podcasts, I was not looking to add anything to my existing subscriptions - I have enough to keep up with. But then John Hodgman tweeted about Bubble...
Many podcasts -and certainly most of the ones I listen to of late - are just a couple, or a few, people talking, often around a loosely defined theme. That theme might be a movie review, a sport, or an historical or cultural phenomenon. But there are cases where people have decided to tackle the ambitious feat of putting together an honest to goodness, scripted radio play (or perhaps we should just say “audio play”, since there’s no radio involved).
Bubble is a new, eight part audio series from Maximum Fun. It is written by Jordan Morris, and each episode (thus far) runs about a half hour. When I say new, I mean it - the first episode dropped on June 12th, and the second on June 20th. This is brand-spanking new.
There are multiple voices in the play, some perhaps familiar to the entertainment and podcast savvy. This is set in our time, but in a different place - in a world where the outside world is a harsh environment full of monsters - “Imps” who want to kill you, but where there are cities (or at least one city - Fairhaven) under protective domes, or if you prefer, in a bubble.
What quickly becomes clear, however, is that Fairhaven’s bubble is perhaps not so secure as one might think. And this is where the tension, and your lead characters - Morgan and Mitch - come in.
That description, of course, suggests this might be sci-fi horror, and I suppose it could be considered that, but with a hearty, healthy nod to shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer with a little Portlandia thrown in. The dialogue is fun and fast, and the characters are a lot of fun - you know these people already, and you enjoy hanging out with them. Well... with some of them...
I always prefer to refrain from spoiling much of what is to come when you listen to or watch a thing, so I’ll stop here with the description. Suffice it to say this is now on my regular listen list - its a weekly release, and I really could not wait for episode two to drop. And given that it’s only slated for eight episodes, it promises to be the sort of show you keep in your pod catcher for repeated listening (I’ve already listened to the first episode twice).