Production company – Grim & Mild
I am currently revisiting this series after a long time. I’ve listened to so many podcasts in the meantime though, for the sake of this review I felt that a “refresher” was needed. Does this mean that the series isn’t memorable? Somewhat, but read on and I’ll explain in more detail (now that I can remember the story!)
So what’s it about?
Folklore lecturer Jeremy Bradshaw has built his reputation on depth of knowledge and extreme sceptical attitude. He teaches in his hometown, a sleepy backwater called Bridgewater. This is a place that has a somewhat notorious reputation though. The locals call it “The Bridgewater Triangle” owing to the number of strange phenomena and disappearances in the area. So I guess the term “sleepy backwater” isn’t such a good one eh?
During a lecture, one of the students starts asking about Jeremy’s father, the town sheriff, who had disappeared 30 years previously. Apparently a sheriff’s badge has recently been found in the area where he vanished, this is news to Jeremy who hasnt been informed of the discovery. Initially he suspects this to be some strange and cruel prank. When he sees the badge, it is like new, certainly not like something that should have been in a swamp for decades. And so the adventure begins.
As the clues are revealed and fitted together, they uncover strange pagan cults, ancient folklore, strange creatures and voices from beyond the grave. His friends either wittingly or unwittingly put themselves in great danger as they try to discover what really happened to his father all those years ago. As the story progresses, Jeremy has not only his faith, but his grip on reality tested.
Is it any good?
Yes. I listen to an awful lot of shows like this, that vary wildly in quality. Thankfully, this is one of the good ones. The voice acting is very good and the characters are all interesting and likeable (even the ones who aren’t supposed to be!)
The more eagle eared among you will recognise Vipin’s voice as that of Karan Soni, who also voices Jeet, the ever alert intern and superfan of Terry Carnation. Also appearing is Will Wheaton as (the quite frankly ridiculously named) Captain Haddock. I remember Wheaton as the fresh faced Wesley Crusher from Star Trek TNG. To be honest, if you didn’t tell me that he was in this I’d never have known.
Aside from the actors, this is a very good audio drama. It’s a nice twist on folk horror without trying too hard. The production values are high enough that there are no cringy sound effects or outdoor monologues that were obviously recorded indoors. Those things appear more often than you’d think and they are a real mood killer.
Some of the characters verge on the cliché. Not just Vipin who seems to be playing Jeet again, actually that should be the other way round, but I’m sure you understand. There is the skeptical lecturer with a dark past, the plucky assistant and the hard boiled ex-cop who has seen it all before. Despite this, they avoid scenery chewing too much and it won’t get in the way of your enjoyment too much (unlike the cast of The White Vault, for example).
This is a good, solid audio drama. A good paranormal yarn set in the modern day with enough suspense to make sure you listen to “just one more”, before you realise you’ve binged the whole thing. Are there better shows out there? Of course, but there are a whole lot worse to be found. Not only that, but there are worse that regularly get recommended to people.
Do yourself a favour and subscribe. I think you’ll like it a lot.
You can find Bridgewater here:
Or wherever you get your podcasts.