Short Audio Review of The Kingery Season Four Finale

So I’m trying something new here. Let me know what you think in the comments section.

I won’t be doing this for every review, but I thought it would be cool to do at least one review like this.

(Despite it being a review of the finale, there aren’t that MANY spoilers. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any. So, yeah, you’ve been warned).

mp3 Link/Download

I’ll post an in depth text review of the entire fourth season at a later date.

Professor Hoyt’s Remarkable Elixir and Thanks for the Memories

Thanks for the Memories

A interesting premise where the how isn’t really answered. We understand when and why it happens, but not the scientific or fantastical elements that cause it. There’s no cause and effect. The verisimilitude of the story was good enough that I never asked the standard who, what, where, when, how and why questions. In fact I was so engrossed by the story that it was the last thing on my mind.

The premise is that someone has the ability to take someones memories. One of the catches is it has to mutual (there are more that are explained later on). The person has to willingly give his memories to this person. I mentioned before that the big question never entered my mind, but one question that did plague my thoughts was why was the age so important. It wouldn’t have crossed me if the protagonist didn’t make such a big deal of it.

I’m writing this review a few weeks after listening to the episode so maybe it was explained. I just didn’t hear it or remember it. Maybe the author, Mike Murphy didn’t think it was important? Whatever the case may be, it’s just a minor complaint.

Another element I noticed, and I do this in my own writing, was that this man’s unique ability had rules that seemed to come out of nowhere and seemed like reasons added in to have the story make sense. Like I said I do the same thing in my own work and other works of fiction, such as the movie Inception, have similarly complex plots that they need to be explained otherwise the reader, listener or watcher is taken out of the story and starts asking questions. It’s ultimately up to the writer to decide what elements to leave out, but he/she has to make sure it makes sense within the confides of the story.

I think its a fine line and Mike Murphy walks it very carefully.

Episode 8

Professor Hoyt’s Remarkable Elixir

The conflict and the relationship between the characters was very original and creative. People bringing someone back from the dead is common, almost a cliche if not done properly. But, writer Mike Murphy adds in an element of film noir. The particular film that jumps to mind is Double Indemnity. Murphy combines two very common plot threads into something entirely new.

It just goes to show that a story can come from anywhere.

Episode 9

The Leviathan Chronicles (Chapter 4)

The content, or at least the execution of the content to the listener, was redundant. The parts that used prose had sound effects that weren’t really needed as the narration was enough. It’s basically showing and telling at the same time and gives it a “why” factor. The story was good though, it was just the mixing that kind of fell apart on me.

Wormwood Episode 1


I enjoyed the humor of the story, but felt the drama fluctuated to points of extreme suspense and tension to none at all. I wondered if it was a comedy with drama thrown in or a drama with comedy thrown in. Seeing as this is only one episode there are bound to be missing/odd portions in the script that would be explained in future episodes. In terms of characters I enjoyed them all and felt I could relate to a lot them.


The production value was good, better than most online companies. Again I am assuming that the collaboration was done online. The problem I had, and forgive me if I’m using the wrong terminology, was the EQ of the overall mix. It sounded like all the actors came from the same microphone, which is usually good. However the microphone sounded hardly had any breathing room. I’m not sure if it was a stylistic choice, but when you have the illusion that people are in the same room you want it to sound roomy.


As I said in the previous section the actors bounce off eachother’s lines as if they are in the same room. Each performance brought that world to life.

The Leviathan Chronicles (Chapter 3)

The story this time around is interesting, but at points hard to accept as real. It’s mostly the expositional scenes and the end where this happens. For most fiction the reader, or listener in this case, has the most connection to the protagonist. After the last chapter, I get that vibe that Macallan is that character and if she doesn’t believe then the listener won’t believe either. Add in her thoughts about the brutal murder of her lab partner and it’s even more confusing. In fiction, when exposition is given there is no doubt in the reader/listener’s mind that what is being told is the truth, if done correctly and despite the main character’s doubts. For me, that was not the case. At first I fell in the category of believing, then after the aforementioned corpse scene I was going along with the protagonist’s thoughts. I’m not really sure what the author was going for, but it just left me on the fence as to whether I should believe or not believe.

Other than the big reveals and end of the chapter, the rest of the story was good. One little nitpick I have is that we are introduced to Othello as if we’ve known him already. the first line of one of the prose sections starts with the Othello doing something. My first reaction: Who’s Othello?

Robots of the Company Episode 1


The story is an interesting one. The pacing was perfect for a comedy series. Not a lot of tension, except towards the end. I laughed a bit, but I don’t think the writer was going for a straight out comedy otherwise I would’ve laughed non-stop. For those who know me in person I laugh at just about anything. So there were serious and dramatic bits that seemed to overpower the comedic ones. I thought of it more of as a sitcom that I laughed at the jokes, but the characters didn’t rub off on me. Not to say that the characters aren’t likable, it’s that it has that feel. There are a lot of sitcoms old and present that have one-dimensional characters, but the humor it there. Sort of the best of bits, for me at least, wrapped into one series. I also loved the idea of an all-powerful company in a non-thriller kind of story. It was a nice twist.


The production value was great, not much I can comment on that stuck out. The music during the narration bits felt like it was made it for it. Nice sound effects, though some instances where they lasted longer. It was like the floating head syndrome, but with sound effects instead of actors.


I was shocked when I learned who some of the voices belonged to. I was very impressed that some actors I knew from other production companies could do such talented things with their voice. Good job to everyone.

The Leviathan Chronicles (Chapter 2)


Once again writer, Christof Laputka, immersed me in the world of the story. This time the setting shifts to a university where the best and the brightest medical students attend. The prose was awesome as well as the dialogue. The horror vibe came back during the exchange between Macallan and her grandmother. It was both creepy and sad, which is an odd blend of emotions. Other than that scene this was a standard story. I feel that the first chapter was more of a prologue, after listening to this chapter. But it works whatever the scenario.


So I learned that the recording and mixing is all done in one central location, rather than online. Other than that not much changed production wise, still awesome. The lack of sound effects is working for it right now, but sooner or later the prose sections that describe everything may become dull.  By everyone’s reaction to this series, that doesn’t seem like it would the case.


Once again great acting by the cast. Sorry that’s all I got. 🙂

The Leviathan Chronicles (Chapter 1)


The script is unique in that it can either be an audio drama or a podcast audiobook. I haven’t heard of anything that combines the best of both worlds and after listening to this, the bar for future projects like this is up in outer space. I really enjoyed this. Great prose narration and the dialogue was the perfect combination of science and casual talking. I could understand enough of what the actors were talking about to get more enveloped in the story. I couldn’t help but be chilled by the use of sound effects and music choices. Add in the narrator and I got the same sense I get when reading good horror stories. I get that vibe, but it’s not horror. And usually that kind of “it’s horror, but it’s not” kind story doesn’t really appeal to me. Then again I haven’t really seen it done in audio form this successfully. I have heard some very good audio horror stories, but this just blows them out of the water (no pun intended).


I don’t know if the recording is all done at once, but it sounds like actors are in the same room. If they use the traditional e-mail the lines method than the amount of detail and thought put into the dialogue bits was outstanding.


Acting is top notch. Not much to say other than I loved it.

7th Son: Descent (Chapters 4 and 5)

Chapter 4

The proof chapter in which the listener learns that they do have the same memories, but cloning is still in the skeptical pile as Jack (the geneticist) doesn’t believe that humans can clone other humans. And with good reason too. Dr. Mike, Thomas, Killroy 2.0 and Jonathan all sit in their own rooms while Michael (the marine), John (musician) and Jack discuss their childhood and find the evidence that there memories are in fact exactly the same. The other four clones each have their own questions and fears to face.

While I’m not that big on reaction chapters, I felt this was necessary as who wouldn’t be thinking what the clones are thinking after hearing what they heard. The way Hutchins shows how the clones have the same memories is simple, yet creative. And I think that was the best route to go.

Chapter 5

The chapter after the storm starts out just reintroducing the characters. Which is necessary when you have seven protagonists. The focus of the chapter is on Dr. Mike (the criminal psychologist) and how is unwilling to except the truth that he is a clone. It’s an interesting parallel with the POV character, John, who takes the opposite view. It’s a matter of fact vs belief. Dr. Mike has some evidence supporting his claim that all of this is an attempt to brainwash the seven of them. Everyone else barely has any proof, other than the worn out photographs of each of the clones Uncle Carl and Aunt Jaclyn.

It is possible for the listener to be skeptical as human cloning seems impossible with today’s technology in 2011 and this podcast novel was written in 2006. Add in the ability to record, copy and paste entire memories and you get yourself a science fiction story that will divide the readers into two categories: ones that love the book and ones that hate it. Even though previously mentioned in the last chapter, I still had a hard time believing it.

But just like real life, the majority is often right. Same goes for fiction as the six other clones are confident that all seven of them are indeed clones with the same memories of the man dubbed, John Alpha.

Lilith’s Children


The story was confusing, but the script was alright. The reason it’s confusing is because it feels like just a bunch of scenes pasted next to each other that ramps up the tension, but ends on a cliffhanger. Which isn’t a bad thing, but a nice arc for a few scenes would have been nice. It seemed like every scene new characters were introduced. This additive process then repeats itself until the episode’s ending. It doesn’t answer any questions, merely adds more characters to a plot. And to me that’s not pacing that’s just structured scenes.


Mixing was good. Didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary. Loved the theme song. My only complaint, and this could go in anyone of the three categories, is that the character’s sound too similar. This only added to my “feeling” of confusion, as I’ve stated above. And let me reiterate that this is just the feeling I get, not actual mistakes in the story itself. I’m sure with a second listen I could catch all the parts I’ve missed, but if you don’t get the audience interested the first time it’s damn near impossible to get them to re-listen.


The acting was good, but added to my confusion of the story. A lot of the voices sounded too similar. One actor in particular, I won’t mention a name, fooled me into thinking he was acting and not reading the lines in a different voice. I’ve been known to do this myself and I’m not sure whether that’s a good thing or bad thing as people say that acting and deception/lying are often synonymous. That being said it really didn’t bother me until the last few sentences of the character before the scene ended.