I once had a conversation with an audio drama producer about Decoder Ring Theatre (DRT). I was defending DRT's house style of uncomplicated productions using mono sound files, sparce sound effects, and simple old time radio organ transition music.
But what make DRT stand apart is the quality of the writing. Creator Gregg Taylor's fluent understanding of story and character is astounding. I don't think I have yet to meet a producer who is as prolific. He is a master of the long game with fully realized story arcs that will span seasons, and characters who are fully fleshed out people in a genre where cliche' is king.
DRT's monthly podcast alternates with the masked crime fighting episodes of The Red Panda Adventures, and gritty gumshoe investigations of Black Jack Justice.
The Red Panda Adventures details the exploits of Canada's greatest masked hero, the Red Panda who is an amalgam of Batman, The Green Hornet, and The Shadow. I find that a lot of the time what makes this show diffrent is that the story takes place in the gutters between the panels of the huge exsploisons and bare knuckle brawls. Gregg Taylor works out what makes the characters tick, you not only care about the heroes, but also the villians. He really alllows you to see into the villians minds, which does not justify the villians actions, but lays out their motivations. You get to see them as not nessacarily evil, but sometime as tragic and sympathetic.
Then you have the cool noire' mysteries of Black Jack Justice. Featuring the Ol' square jaw himself: Privet investigator Jack Justice, and his partner Trixie Dixon: Girl Detective. The banter between Jack and Trixie make listening a joy, but then add the motley cast of supporting characters and you have a smart and sassy audio drama that you will look forward to every month.
So if you are looking for a quality audio drama in the style of Old Time Radio, or just a great listen, go no further than Decoder Ring Theatre!
Original Review 01/07/2006
This is a really cool Podcast. It is called Decoder Ring Theater, it's a throwback to the Golden Age of Radio. It follows the Adventures of The Red Panda. He is a Canadian Superhero fighting against the Axis Powers in WWII. It's a Humor/Adventure Radio Drama, audio quality is fair, but the writing is smart and fun. Great fun for adults and children.
I highly recommend checking it out.