Monday, October 29, 2012

This (Last) Week in Podcasting October 21-27

Unofficial Univeral Orlando Podcast Episode 42: Whew. What a relief! I had some very conflicted emotions going into this new Halloween edition of UUOP, and I am happy to report that long gone are the 2 hours shows filled with script reads and copy/paste jobs from the Universal website, and back are the usual fun, smart, and hilarious Lee, Tracey, and Darren that I have come to love. On the first UUOP Halloween special last year we were introduced to Darren and he gave an excellent trip report on Universals Halloween Horror Nights. Now a UUOP host, Darren returns to the role of last year and shares his thoughts on HHN and Busch Gardens Howl O Scream. As usual, Darren is articulate, smart, and almost accidentally funny. Lee and Tracey do a great job at playing the role of the listener and asking Darren important, need to know questions. This is an example of how their handicap of not being able to visit the park is an advantage. They ask questions, listen to stories, and probe deeper as if they were about to leave on a trip tomorrow and they were trying to get every last drop of information from Darren. Lee made a bit of a big deal of the background music on this weeks show but I was so enthralled and into the topics and content of the show, I didn’t even notice the background music. (Maybe that is the way its supposed to be.) The listener trip reports were interesting to listen as well, and the interview a former Universal team member was down right fascinating. Their guest was Adrian LePeltier, and on top of being funny, he was a mountain of information and stories. While the opening segment of the show went on a little bit too long, I can forgive that because the rest of the show was top notch. Definitely take the time and give this weeks show a listen.    

Magical Definition October 28: Nathan Rose and Jim Hill continue to soldier on and turn conventional theme park podcasting on its ear. On this weeks show the duo talks about the new Disney animated feature Wreck it Ralph. Sometimes I do feel a little bit bad for Nathan. He does the intro for the show and then poses a question to Jim, and 40 minutes later the show is over. Ok, so maybe its not that stark, but Jim does tend to run with a question for a long time. And as Jim Hills number one fan, I am 100% ok with that! I have noticed in the last few shows that Nathan has been doing a little bit of a better job at getting a word in edge wise. When it comes to the content on this weeks show, it’s the same as always with Magical Definition; you simply can not compete with the amount of knowledge and insider information that Jim Hill brings to the table. Like him or not, he is one of the most informed and articulate guys in the business today. When it comes to the discussion about Wreck it Ralph, I have to say that I disagree a little bit with Jim Hills assessment of the film. I think he kind of under rated it and didn’t do the best job of conveying the true story of the film to the listeners. That being said, like usual, this weeks Magical Definition is still well worth the listen.  

WDW Happy Place Episode 16: On this weeks show the hosts are joined by two guests to talk about the recent opening of New Fantasyland. Now I really do to want to come across as harsh, but I really did not enjoy this weeks show. And that is not just because it’s a glorified trip report of a show, but I do think that the guests on the show heavily over rated New Fantasyland. Giving the new themed land a 9 star review is just too much for me, and because I really disagreed with the rating and opinion of New Fantasyland, I found it hard to stay engaged and interested in the rest of the show. There was also some hesitation from one of the guests to “spoil” New Fantasyland. So the review was vague, shallow, and full of incomplete thoughts and ideas. More so than an objective overview of the land, the trip report turned into a pseudo step by step tour of the land with details. It felt like all the guest was saying was, “Well this attraction is over here, and this shop is next to it.”  The strong hesitation to ot “spoil” the new land led me to become even more disengaged with the show. And I understand that a show that is hosted by a few moms may not be in my wheel house, but I would much rather listen to the Mickey Mama’s podcast than this weeks episode of WDW Happy Place. Again, I might be a little too harsh with this review, but this weeks show just did not click for me. 

Show of the Week: Wedway Radio Episode 132:This weeks show from the brothers Parrish is by far the best podcast I have listened to all week, and maybe even the best show I have heard all year. More than anything what impressed me about this weeks episode is that the normally awesome and informative Matt and Nate managed to do an even better job at getting information out to their listeners. On this weeks show they are joined by Steve "Tikiman" Seifert who is an absolute expert on everything that is Disney’s Polynesian resort. To even begin to try and describe how amazing this weeks show was is an overwhelming task. The combination of the Matt, Nate, and Steve is one that works very well. I am surprised by just how much Steve knows about the Polynesian resort, and I also was surprised by the amazing amount of detail they go into on this show. On the surface a podcast episode about the Polynesian resort did not seem too appealing to me, but I knew that I was in good hands with Matt and Nate. The added factor of Steve on this weeks show multiplied the usual information output of WEDWAY Radio by a thousand! And in typical mMatt and Nate fashion, I walked away from the episode having learned more in 90 minutes then I all of the Polynesian knowledge I had gathered over the last three years. Top notch, five stars! This is what podcasting is all about for me. History, information, and great story telling!   

This means that WEDWAY Radio Episode 132 and Inside the Magic Episode 391 are the two candidates for October Show of the Month! So tweet me @wakefieldreport your vote! 

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