13 Articles

The Granddaddy of all radio dramas…

We just realized Orson Welles was punk-rock-Elvis. Y’know, young, skinny, arrogant badass gains public awareness by creating chaos, outrage and timeless art – and then dying all fat and drunk. (eh, but to be fair, dying is a lose lose situation as far as grace and dignity go unless you fall on a grenade to save your platoon while riding a great white shark).

Welles himself said, “I started at the top and worked my way down.” Which is kinda true, though being a voice in the 1986 Transformers animated movie isn’t the absolute rock bottom of cinema – that would come years later with Michael Bay’s live version of Transformers. But we’re not here to talk about the bottom and we’re certainly not here to remind you about THIS horrible gift incident.

We’re here to remind you about this:

You see, Johnny Rotten had a group called The Mercury Theater and as one did in 1938, he and his band performed radio dramas… adapted performances of classic pieces of literature… cover songs if you will. And while they did okay with their covers of Bram Stoker’s Dracula and The Thirty Nine Steps by John Buchan, but it wasn’t until the eve of Halloween that they did a performance so powerful that there was anarchy in the USA.

War of the Worlds was not only an innovative and ingenious adaptation, it was also a shrewdly calculated social experiment. It’s worth listening to if you’ve never heard it, but we also recommend this podcast that RADIOLAB put out a few years back. They not only dissect Welles adaptation, but a couple others that you may not have heard about. Check it out or live your life in ignorance. Your choice.


Happy Halloween!

You’re waiting for the promised Halloween Earbud piece aren’t you? You’re so cool that way. I knew there was a reason we like people like you. Well it’s coming! It maybe a few hours late, though, because this frightening concoction of audio terror is going to require some more powdered fingernails, ectoplasm and eye of nNewt. 😉

It’s better to burn out than it is to become smashing.

So as we enter into what might be one of our favorite weekends of the year, let us know how you plan to spend it (what are you listening to? watching? reading?). We’re dying for a good horror movie recommendation.

About the Art…

And now a short rave about Megan Hutchison who has been gracious enough to do some art for the site. The spot art for Shift and Auld Acquaintance were hers as well as that for the upcoming pieces, Clang! and Always In Season (pictured here).

Very talented with a style that’s all her own. The first piece that grabbed my eye was an illustration called Chin Up featuring a dapper gentleman sitting thoughtfully on a stool – only this guy had the head of a raven. The next was a robot with a TV head holding a little girl in the palm of his hand. Like that, I’m hooked. I reached out to her to ask her to do some work for me and another writer friend for a comic book proposal. She obliged and she rocked that as well:

Pretty cool, huh? (That poor girl, she thought she was going to be genetically modified to have butterfly wings. What’s her boyfriend going to think of her now?)

Megan is currently working on a graphic novel for Archaia called Will-O-the-Wisp and has recently updated her website displaying a ton of her work, some of which you can actually buy. I highly recommend checking it out for the works mentioned above as well as many, many others.