Podcast Review: The Message

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When you hear the words General Electric (GE), what comes to mind is most likely images of fridges, stoves, washers, or dryers. GE is not typically associated with the production of chart topping podcasts that will have you losing sleep so you can listen to one more episode. Just one more…then I will go to bed… by that time you have 2 episodes left, it would be silly not to listen to them. Anyways, GE Podcast Theater knows how to hold your attention.

In issue 16 of The Quill, I reviewed Life After, the latest podcast from GE Podcast Theater. This week we are travelling back in time, way back to 2015 (back when there was hope for the future and a dystopian reality was not a possibility). For their first podcast, GE Podcast Theater teamed up with Panoply to produce what would become a number one hit podcast on iTunes.

The Message is a science fiction podcast hosted by Nicky Tomlin, a young woman with a Master’s Degree in Linguistics. Tomlin uses her credentials and passion for linguistics to gain access to a prominent group of cryptologists. In doing so she creates a podcast that follows this elite group as they work to decode a message retrieved from outer space 70 years previously. As listeners, we are taken through this process, and are front and centre for when things start to go downhill, quickly. Maybe there was a reason the message was hidden away for 70 years.

This is not GE’s first foray into the world of entertainment. From 1953-1962 General Electric Theater was an anthology series broadcast on CBS radio and Television. The series was hosted by Ronald Reagan, and featured many celebrities, including Joan Crawford, James Dean and Zsa Zsa Gabor.

The Message is a short series consisting of 8 episodes. Each episode averages a run time of 10-15 minutes, apart from the final episode which clocks in at 22 minutes. This podcast is slow to start, but don’t give up, by episode 3 it is impossible to walk away. I cannot recommend this podcast enough, and look forward to GE Podcast Theater’s next production. The Message is available on iTunes and is listed under the Life After podcast, or you can find it and more information at themessagepodcast.com. I give this podcast a rating of 6 jelly donuts out of 5.

Republished from The Quill print edition, Volume 107, Issue 18, January 17, 2017.