Tag Archives: Decoder Ring Theatre

Black Jack Justice: The Albatross

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“Black Jack Justice” is Decoder Ting Theatre’s second main series (I previously talked about ” The Red Panda Adventures”). This is Gregg Taylor’s unique take on the hard-boiled detective genre. One of the twists Taylor gives us is dual detectives – the titular Jack Justice and his partner, Trixie Dixon, girl detective.

Beginning in 2005, “Black Jack Justice” and “Red Panda” alternated airing in sets of 6 episodes. Currently, BJJ – also in its eighth season – debuts new episodes on the 15th of the month from September through February. Taylor produced 12 episodes for the first season, but the series has had 6 episodes per season since (with a fill-in series rounding out each year). The series is reminiscent of the wonderful Old Time Radio detective shows like “Sam Spade,” “Philip Marlowe” and “Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar.”

This particular episode may not be the best one for an introduction, but it is my absolute favorite. One of the most dramatic episodes of the series, “The Albatross” focuses on my favorite supporting character, Police Lt. Victor Sabien, played by series creator Gregg Taylor. In this episode, Sabien is haunted by the murder of a young girl. The department wants the case to disappear, so Sabien enlists Jack and Trixie to try and find out what happened. While Christopher Mott (Jack) and Andrea Lyons (Trixie) are always wonderful in this series, this episode belongs to Taylor. The emotion on display here should have earned him an Academy Award, if such a thing existed for audio drama.

As I said, this episode may not be the best choice for an introduction to the series, and it can be a hard listen even for longtime followers. It is, however, a dang fine piece of drama and well worth listening to. I hope you give it a listen.

BLACK JACK JUSTICE
“The Albatross”
January 14, 2011
Cast: Christopher Mott, Andrea Lyons, Gregg Taylor, Clarissa Der Nederlanden, Peter Nicol
Writer: Gregg Taylor
Director: Gregg Taylor

Download & Listen:

Get more Black Jack Justice here:
http://www.decoderringtheatre.com/index.php?id=bjj

Red Panda Adventures: Monkeyshines

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Today I’ll talk about a favorite episode of one of my favorite modern audio drama series – “The Red Panda Adventures” from Decoder Ring Theatre.

Again, some background for those unfamiliar: “The Red Panda Adventures” began in 2005. A super hero podcast series in the style of Old Time Radio, it stars creator and writer Gregg Taylor as the Red Panda, and his wife, Clarissa Der Nederlanden, as sidekick, the Flying Squirrel. Originally set in 1930s Toronto, time does advance in the series and, currently in Season 8, the timeframe is now mid-WWII. (The episode I’m sharing today is from Season 2.) The series is fun and family-friendly (my kids love it – one of my boys was the Red Panda for Halloween and another has built an entire Lego Red Panda collection), in the spirit of Golden Age radio, comics and pulp magazines. In the years he’s been producing the series Taylor has also spun the characters off into a line of pulp-style novels (Tales of the Red Panda) and an upcoming digital comic mini-series (Mask of the Red Panda).

Gregg Taylor and Decoder Ring Theatre consistently produce outstanding audio drama. This episode introduces my favorite of the Red Panda’s super villains – the Mad Monkey, delightfully played by Christopher Mott. Taylor’s dialogue is always wonderful, and this episode is certainly no exception. This episode is just loads of fun, and I hope you enjoy it.

THE RED PANDA ADVENTURES
“Monkeyshines”
April 7, 2007
Cast: Gregg Taylor, Clarissa Der Nederlanden, Christopher Mott, Steven Burley, Brian Vaughn, Gregory Z. Cook, Kevin Robinson, Michael Booth, Monica Kote
Writer: Gregg Taylor
Director: Gregg Taylor

Download & listen to this episode:

Find the rest of the series here:
http://www.decoderringtheatre.com/index.php?id=rpa

Audio Dramatists in Prose

I had not really planned to veer into other subjects already, but both of these prose works by two of my favorite modern audio dramatists hit the same day, so I wanted to help promote them.

First, Tim Prasil has begun officially releasing his “Vera Van Slyke: Help for the Haunted” short stories over on his blog.  I read and enjoyed the preview releases, and am also reading these revised official releases.  The first story, “The Minister’s Unveiling,” is available now for free in epub, kindle and pdf formats.  Tim has written a total of 9 Showcase episodes for Decoder Ring Theatre, including fantastic “Marvellous Boxes” anthology.  I urge you to check out his DRT and Vera Van Slyke stories.

Next, Decoder Ring Theatre’s Chief Bottle Washer, Gregg Taylor, has a new novel out in ebook form (print coming in the very near future).  “Finn’s Golem” is not connected to his Red Panda or Black Jack Justice work.  It is the third and final version of his sci-fi/detective story about private investigator Drake Finn.  Longtime DRT followers may remember the Showcase episode “I.D.0,” which was the second version of the story (the first was an unfinished mobile video series titled “Clean Slate”).

For more on Tim Prasil’s Vera Van Slyke, and to get the first story, go here:

http://timprasil.wordpress.com/2013/01/01/2013-the-year-of-vera-van-slyke/

To get “Finn’s Golem” by Gregg Taylor, you can go to the Smashwords store:

http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/270133

or the Kindle store (print coming soon via Amazon):

http://www.amazon.com/Finns-Golem-ebook/dp/B00AVASECA/ref=sr_1_4?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1357164608&sr=1-4&keywords=gregg+taylor