Lost Terminal: 10.5 – Lev has made a discovery. I would also like an electronic birb, please. Seth has a lot to think about his own nature in this episode, as this little mechanical bird starts a train of thought about what’s real or not. How is he different from that bird, or from Nia’s radio at the end of the episode? He isn’t human, but he’s also not a simple piece of electronics. Seth’s dream in this episode unveils a very disturbing truth about Maddie and her nature since she was given a new body, in regards to a specific event from last season. Could the story be building up to a dangerous confrontation between the two?
Don’t Mind Cruxmont: Episode 14. It’s the conclusion to this first story in the Don’t Mind anthology series, and given the horrors only recently uncovered, the story wraps up with an ending that is surprisingly happy. As we discover in the post-credits scene, two of the main characters are now in situations which ultimately benefit them – as strange as one may be – and give them happier and more satisfying lives than they had before going to Cruxmont. It’s certainly not what I was expecting as we learned more and more about the true nature of this isolated town, but I found it an enjoyable and satisfying ending.
Within the Wires: Season 7, Episode 3: Tekapo. Anita has made it to Aotearoa, and I really enjoyed the focus on the country’s place in this dystopian world. There’s a positive side to the Reckoning depicted in this episode; the exclusive use of Māori names is the first suggestion, but Elena goes on to explain what happened to this colonised country as the new global Society was established. There’s a beautiful portrayal of love, as Elena talks about the time she and Rose spent in Aotearoa together. It’s a depiction of the quiet joy of everyday activities when you share them with someone you love, and how even the ordinary can become something wonderful.
InCo: Episode 63 – Distance. Things really are making a lot of sense, right Nova? A late night (or would that be early morning?) visit that’s part of her Big Plan to Bring Everything Down sheds a lot of light into the various schemes that had been going on on the planet of Eolara before her arrival. In the previous episode, Nova had found out that royal child Wilm had an unlocked tablet before he went missing – on a planet where information is tightly controlled by the powers that be, in a story where the price and value of information is everything. It turns out that he wasn’t the only one. Nova and Hatov’s digging keeps bringing up more disturbing information at every turn, as more pieces of the truth are added to the jigsaw puzzle.
The Goblet Wire: S1 E11 – The Goblet Graveyard. It’s so interesting how this player and their relationship with the Goblet Wire stand out as being so different to the others that we’ve met so far. There’s been an emphasis on how important the game is to others, their desperation to continue playing, but here there’s the complete opposite of that. Lacey_Hearts_XO has become frustrated with the game after years of playing, after searching for some kind of meaning to life and the world, and not accomplishing it. But the players are never in control here – the game’s GM is called the Dictator, after all – and even the choice to voluntarily leave the game isn’t one that can be made easily.
Kingmaker: Chapter Two – What the Hell is Blue? This second full episode of Kingmaker starts to establish Collette’s place in the trio, as we learn more about Eisen and Telesphore and their shady dealings. Of course, what really matters to those two is the kingmaker diamond, still embedded in Collette’s skull. I was fascinated by their strange vehicle, which gave me slight Howl’s Moving Castle vibes, and added so much to my understanding of the country of Valor and how unusual it is.
Afflicted is a new horror thriller created by Tonia Ransom (the creator of NIGHTLIGHT), set in a small Texas town. Hoodoo queen Mamma Cherrie’s white apprentice, Becky, makes a decision that has terrible repercussions on the town and its citizens, as a series of disasters are unleashed. It’s a tense and powerful season opener, and I’m very much looking forward to following this story.
Medieval fantasy The Fause Knight comes from Wired Cowslip (The Waystation). In Chapter the Fyrst The Storyteller introduces us to this bygone time, a world of magic and great forests, and to our protagonist, the Thief. The Thief’s journey starts to take a strange turn after she steals the armor from a dead knight.
Inn Between‘s Session Zero starts to build the foundation for a new season and its characters. Here we glance behind the curtain, to meet the people playing this fictional game of D&D which the characters of the show inhabit, and there are some familiar voices from the world of audio fiction. I loved how the episode added an extra layer of narrative to the story, and it was such a fun way of teasing new characters we have yet to meet.
Oblivity released a bonus episode this week, ahead of its return for its second season on the 16th of November. Away from Pluto and the chaos of Base Persephone, the two married interrogators, Reginald and Horace, attend relationship counselling. However, there’s more to this session than first meets the eye.
Moonbase Theta, Out released the first full episode of their fourth and final season, titled Contrary Moon. The five prologue episodes that had been released in the weeks running up to this new season had bridged the gap between seasons three and four, while establishing new locations for some of the story’s key players. The jump forward in time is quickly established in the opening scene, which also ties in with the All Your Base miniseries (which had been released between seasons 3 and 4) very nicely. The crew meeting also brings us up to speed with developments on the moon, and at this point, Alex seems to be something of an elephant in the room. While everyone else has been moving forward – with varying results – Roger has been standing still, not moving from his husband’s side.
Folxlore released a series of three shorts, in time for Halloween. There’s an exploration of queerness and the struggles of queer folk in both the distant and more recent past in two of the three episodes, while the third seems to tie in with stories from season one. Season two is due to launch in spring 2023.
Witchever Path made its return appropriately on Halloween, with a new story titled Second Course. It’s a return to the characters and settings of the show’s very first story, Squirrels, and some time has passed and much has changed since we first met John. The perspective has shifted from the outside to the inside, while still keeping the mystery about the Farm that was built in Squirrels.
Nine II Midnight is a collaborative project which returned for two sequel episodes this Halloween. Twelve different fiction podcasts were involved in the production of two episodes: Hell Gate City, Malevolent, Nowhere, on Air, Out of the Ashes, Parkdale Haunt, The Cellar Letters, The Dead Letter Office of Somewhere, Ohio, The Night Post, The Storage Papers, The Town Whispers, Wake of Corrosion, and WOE.BEGONE. On the Eve of Halloween, these storytellers sneak into the abandoned Darklight Carnival, and this year, the group splits into two to tell two different sets of tales. Terrors of the Real World, and Horrors of Our Dreams were both released simultaneously, one dealing with the horror that’s firmly rooted in everyday settings and events, and the other with the surreal and dreamlike.
K I L L FM is another collaborative project that was released for Halloween. This episode features segments from Wireland Ranch, Echoes (In) Between, The Supernatural Protection Company, The Liminal Lands, Desert Skies, The Moon Crown, The Madness of Chartrulean, and The Book of Constellations, and also features creators and voice actors from several other fiction podcasts. Framed as different programmes broadcast by K.I.L.L. FM, each story brings a new creepy tale, with an emphasis on the surreal (which isn’t a surprise, given the podcasts involved) and dealing with different themes and settings.
As well as releasing a three-part series this week, Folxlore published a casting call for their upcoming second season. Paid, deadline 13th November.
Two upcoming podcasts on the Faustian Nonsense network launched their crowdfunding campaigns this week. The first is cosmic horror Ethics Town, and the second is sci-fi musical Karen 1%.