Monday, July 23, 2012

We're Alive

We're Alive, created by Kc Wayland and Shane Salk

In post-(zombie)-apocalyptic Los Angeles, a small group of survivors fight to stay alive.  Follow along as they seek answers about exactly what happened and search for a safe place where life might be closer to the way they remember it.

My Opinions:
This is a little different, since it's not an audio book.  However, since I listened to all of it (as much as is currently available, that is) in a relatively short period, if felt a little like listening to an audio book... so I'm treating it (almost) as such, for the purposes of this blog.

I'm not sure what to call We're Alive.  A radio drama?  An audio drama?  Whatever label you prefer, it boasts a complete cast of voice actors and some top-notch sound effects (or foley work, at the risk of sounding like a know-it-all), so it's more like listening to the TV than an audio book-- but without the annoyance of possibly missing something important because you were looking at your crochet (or whatever else) instead of watching the screen.   I heard about the program through an audio book podcast (which I will be blogging about eventually, once I finish listening to the whole novel), and was pleasantly surprised.

The series started in 2009, so I had a couple of years' worth of past episodes/chapters (usually three episodes per chapter) to catch up on, which meant I could listen to as much as I wanted as I crocheted-- the result being that I gobbled chapters at a time.  Well, now I'm all caught up, and the next episode won't come out for another couple of weeks.  See, this is what I hate about getting hooked on TV shows.  With books (well, at least those that are stand-alone, or series that have been completed), at least you know that you can get to the conclusion... that there even is a conclusion.  On the other hand, TV shows and radio programs give you something to look forward to, I guess...

Things I Like:
  • Hey, it's a "zombie"-themed radio drama!  Neat!
  • The sound effects-- very nice!
  • Some of the characters... Sometimes.  (Some more than others.)
  • The whole "survivalist" element-- though I sometimes wish it went into more detail on that aspect of the story instead of... Well, I don't want to spoil anything, so I'll leave it at that. 
  • It's not that scary, so unless you're extremely susceptible, you don't have to worry about nightmares or feeling extra nervous if you're alone in the house at night.  (That said, I don't think it's especially kid-friendly.  At times, there's cursing, and some of it is dark/depressing.)
Thing I Didn't Like:
  • Some of the characters really get on my nerves.  Actually, most of them do, at some point or other, but some are just about always irritating me.  (Ohmygosh, Pegs!  And Lizzy, too, really.)
  • As is apparently the law for such dramas, the characters sometimes do Really Stupid Things.  
  • Some storylines have kind of fallen by the wayside, which is annoying-- especially when I just don't care as much about some of the other storylines that have come into play instead.  Lately, parts of it feel a little soap opera-y with all the coincidences, and I wonder if we'll ever get satisfactory answers.  (But this happens in most TV shows and lengthy books, so...)
  • Some of the voice actors are better than others, imho.  Some are over-the-top... Sometimes they read their lines and something just feels off-- which takes me out of the story for a moment as I think to myself how it "should" have been read.  For the most part, though, they do a good job
So, it's not perfect-- but very little is, and apparently I'm already hooked.

Another plus-- it's (at least currently) available for free.  (Though you can purchase it on CD-- and there's a button here and there on the website, if you'd like to make a donation.)  Check it out here

This has revealed to me a new world of possible entertainment.  I'll definitely be on the look-out for other radio dramas to keep my mind occupied while I crochet.  If I find some I like enough, I'll mention them here.  I do think they qualify nearly as much as "reading" as listening to an audiobook does.