Audio Fiction Sunday 30th April 2023

Personal Highlights

Folxlore: S2E08 – Snap
This episode returns to Zarah and Annie, with a focus on Zarah and how the building’s jump to the Other Side has affected her. We’ve seen some positive depictions of life in this new world in this season, but here we have a depiction of how difficult and complicated it can be. Leaving your old life behind is more difficult for some of the characters here than others, and it’s something that Zarah has been through before. Through her, there’s a heartbreaking portrayal of the experience of coming out as queer later in life, and the negativity surrounding it from both cishet society and queer communities. Zarah is haunted by a past that she’s hiding even from her partner, trying to come to terms with what she sees as two conflicting identities. Zarah’s haunting is harrowing, but the message portrayed by the episode overall is of a hopeful one, and of a new beginning for Zarah and Annie.

Unwell: 5.5 – Outreach
This episode contains a beautiful homage to the roots of audio fiction, in a poignant representation of how the past continues to live on and co-exist with the present in Mt. Absolom. Norah is naturally the representative of the past here, with a discussion around her existence as an echo, when there is still nobody who has the answers to all the questions. Speaking of questions, this episode raises even more about the importance of the telescope, and the role it has for The One That Blooms. There are no answers here either, only possibilities, represented by a terrifying event. The haunting piece of music that plays during and after the credits was a wonderful creative decision, with the piece reinforcing the sadness of this episode, and evoking an image of space.

Tales from the Low City: Part Six: Drifting
I started listening to Tales from the Low City thanks to a recommendation from The Vesta Clinic’s AMC, and I’m delighted to add it to my weekly Sunday posts. Tales from the Low City comes from Dom Guilfoyle, the creator of The Misthome Museum of Mystery, Morbidity, and Mortality (which I started listening to after getting caught up on Tales from the Low City, and I absolutely adore it). Set far in the future, after the Earth’s surface has become uninhabitable, the underground Low City is the last-known civilisation remaining. The city’s strange and wonderful inhabitants are very different from anything we see in our daily lives, and each episode depicts a different species which lives in the Low City. A spotlight is shone on their underground existence, and how each unique society makes up a part of the patchwork of the diverse Low City. This week’s episode portrays the strangest inhabitants we have met so far, the Hohi. We’ve heard of them through not-so-kind depictions of other species’ opinions, and now we finally hear their story – which only emphasises how little each different society within the Low City actually understands about the others. Guilfoyle is an extremely talented storyteller, and their soothing narration and exquisite world-building has made Tales of the Low City one of my favourite podcasts to launch this year.

Apollyon: Episode 12 – Left Behind
The season opener depicted the price of the vaccine research on Theo’s life, while this second episode provides a wider view of its effects on Theo’s colleagues. Theo’s absence is the reason behind the strain professional and personal relationships are put under in this episode, her decision rippling out towards others much like a stone dropping into water. There are heartbreaking flashbacks, portraying an event from Gabriel’s past, giving us wider context to the conflict he’s going through in the present. The lack of moral discussion over the direction the research is going in, that Theo so strongly disagreed with in the previous episode, is notably absent from any discussions here – with Theo gone, Gabriel has nobody he can be truly honest and open with.


Jar of Rebuke is due to return in the summer, and this past Sunday a trailer was released ahead of the next six episodes. It includes a series of snippets of voicemails left for Jared by various characters, all concerned (or annoyed) at his disappearance. 


Where the Stars Fell is back for its third season, and the episode starts with the highly relatable experience of not being able to wake up in the morning until… you remember that whole thing about the oncoming apocalypse. You would think that a couple perusing a selection of interesting weapons would be a more unusual depiction of domestic bliss, but given the circumstances of this story, it makes perfect sense. Ed and Lucy have to deal with an increasing amount of ‘nonsense’ (to quote Lucy) in this episode, as they also try to grapple with the differences they have in how they’re armed against them.

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