Episode 71: A Place So Foreign by Cory Doctorow (Part 1)

James Nicholson is a young boy living rural Utah in 1898. His father got a new job as an ambassador. Not an ambassador to France, but to the year 1975. His family moves out of town and into the future. But when his father has an unfortunate accident, his life is thrown into turmoil. Now he’s back in 1898, and he’s never seen a place so foreign…
Also, Rish and Big announce the beginning of the Broken Mirror Story Event for 2010. Listen in and find out what this year’s premise is.

Special thanks to Julie Hoverson and Josh Roseman for lending their voices to today’s episode.

Right click HERE to download the episode, select Save Link As, and save the file to your hard drive.


Related Links:
Electronic Frontier Foundation
Boing Boing
Josh Roseman’s Site
Julie Hoverson’s 19 Nocturne Boulevard
Some sound effects were provided by freesound.org.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.


9 Responses to “Episode 71: A Place So Foreign by Cory Doctorow (Part 1)”

  1. Wow. great job, guys. Looking forward to part 2!!!!

  2. STORY: Well, it’s Cory Doctorow, so you know there’s going to be something cool… but as the story dragged on after they returned to 1901, I kept wondering what it was. I had no idea what the big reveal was going to be, and James’s constant emo-ness — like a 1990s goth dropped into 1900s Utah — really started to annoy me. I’m actually more interested in how Jules Verne became the only SF writer in this universe — is he some sort of villain who went back in time and stole the work of Doyle, Burroughs, and Wells? I’m hoping that gets addressed in part 2. I did like how Doctorow worked in a little dig against test-score-based education (getting better grades because you learned, not because you regurgitated).

    PRODUCTION: Other than the fact that I feel you guys are kind of overusing that little guitar clip (I swear I’ve heard it in other western stories you’ve done), it was good.

    COMMENTARY: Not much to comment on yet. I heard a couple of places where I think the story could’ve been cut in half earlier on — when James was at his bleakest — but I agree with your decision.

    As for the BMSE… I really hope another Mike Doughty song comes along that gets me inspired like “27 Jennifers” did last year. Although I did have an idea last night that’s bouncing around the old brainpan…

    • That song was the story’s theme music. It had to come up each time there was a scene break. Maybe you thought we overused it because the story ran for 30 mins longer than most of our other stories. Usually you don’t have as much chance to get sick of it. It was also just a simple loop I grabbed off Soundtrack Pro instead of a real song from Jamendo. I couldn’t find a song on Jamendo that fit what I was after in the time I had allotted to spend searching. Sometimes you’ve got to count in the opportunity cost.

      • I understand that. What I meant is, I think I’ve heard that particular sound clip before in other Western stories you’ve done. I may be wrong; you would probably know better than I. But it sounds VERY familiar.

        • Oh, well, I guess that’s possible. I have used other loops from Soundtrack Pro before, so I may have used this one. I don’t keep close track. I rejected several ones that I know I used in “Demon Shadow,” but I could have used it elsewhere, or even in that story for that matter.

  3. Good to see another Dunesteef in the cue. I think I’ll wait for part II and listen to both of them together.

    I’ll look forward to it.

  4. Cambodia Carl Says:

    You know, I didn’t really feel the length of this story as I was listening to it. It just sort of breezed by. I think you four could’ve stuck the whole thing into one episode and it would have been fine.

    • Sure, I could have…but then we’d all still be waiting for the episode, because I’d still be working on it.

      If it weren’t for the computer crash, I might have, because I could have taken advantage of the extra time Bryan producing the last two episodes gave me. But instead I was busy getting my stuff back in order.

      Maybe next time we do a long one I’ll do it all as one episode again, like we did with “Casts A Demon Shadow.”

      I’m glad it didn’t seem long to you though. That means it was interesting, and that’s what we’re shooting for, after all.

  5. not Nigel Says:

    I didn’t want to wait any longer for my Dunesteef fix and listened to the episode. What a great job. Should have trusted you guys. The place where you ended part I was perfect. I suppose it was a cliffhanger, but it felt like a cliffhanger at the end of a 1 hour episode as opposed to cliffhanger at the end of a 30 or 20 minute episode. So many important developments and resolutions had already occurred that there wasn’t that sense of frustration. Similarly to one of your other listeners, the self-styled ‘Nigel’, I’m glad that you broke it into two parts so that we could get the episode sooner.

    Apart from that, it was really well-produced and enjoyable. That musical choice (the recurrring theme that opens out the story) was perfect. The voice acting was superb. Doctorow’s story was nice to begin with, and I think you really added something to it.

    The Broken Mirror song, what can we say? ‘Powerfully Inspiring, Jarringly Redemptive and yet Strangely Context Specific’ :-)
    It lacked, however, the grungy street-level credibility of the October Scary Story theme song. It’s hard to choose between the two. In short: we’re talking ringtones here people.

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