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Safe Society review

Rating – 2 Brains


Sometimes (although not as often as I’d like), I get approached by podcast companies with advance episodes for me to listen to so I can do a release day review, like this one. I like the idea of hearing new shows before anyone else, and the fact they’ve reached out to me makes me feel like a professional.

When I was approached to review this podcast, the premise sounded interesting in the original email, but as I read the press release, my stomach dropped slightly and I was no longer sure that I would enjoy this as much as I thought it would. Read on and I’ll explain.

So what’s it about?

Safe Society is an 11 part “satirical psycho-thriller-horror” by filmmaker Chris Shimojima. With an all star cast, and a somewhat provocative storyline, it looks set to cause rather heated debate particularly within certain sections of modern society.

It follows the rather mysteriously named “M”. A charismatic and fantastically wealthy owner of a health food empire. He seemingly had the perfect childhood. His father was a public speaker and activist, and M grew up with the same philosophy. His caring and compassion, particularly around business matters, made him very wealthy indeed.

He runs a cutting edge vegan food company. The premise is, you supply them with a stool sample, and they tailor your food to your gut. Therefore making highly nutritious, very healthy, and supremely addictive meals delivered directly to your door. Sceptics are soon won over and the world is M’s oyster. He is literally rebuilding the world in his image, at least the image of healthy, bespoke artificial food cooked by robots.

Until a global pandemic hits. As M’s world falls apart, so too does his worldview. Rather than follow his own path, he starts following the crowd, with disastrous consequences.

Is it any good?

This is where I feel a bit bad. I was sent the first four episodes with an introductory email as I said earlier. I wanted to hear the whole thing though, just to make sure I wasn’t missing anything. So I duly acquired the rest of the series. I can see why they only sent the first four out originally. The politics certainly get more “robust” as the episodes progress.

The sound design is good, and the voice acting (that isn’t rendered by AI) is also very good. Unfortunately, thats about all I can say about what I like.

So here is my rundown of why I didn’t like it.

From the introduction, I found the narrator overly smug. I know that’s the point, but as the series went on it got more and more irritating.

The “humour” is very heavy handed. In an earlier draft of this review, I did mention examples, but it was a bit of a spoiler so I took it out. I appreciate that they are poking fun at the “woke” and the “loony left”, but the jibes seem a bit lazy to me. This may sound like me being “triggered” or acting like “a snowflake”. I can appreciate humour done well though, no matter what the subject. This is not it.

I also disagree with the reliance on AI. Using it for artwork is bad enough, the fact that it is essentially theft is something that has been proven, but to use it for the voice acting I feel is a  step too far. Running this blog, I follow lots of podcast and voice talent related posts on social media. Only last week a voice actor tweeted that they had lost their job now that they “had her voice saved” so they could use AI. I’m sure that it’s been used because it is a shiny new technology, but I can’t condone its use in creative fields.

Final thoughts

As I said above, there were parts of this podcast that were so smug and sarcastic that I found it infuriating. Then I realised something. The attitude of the dialogue was just as smug and sarcastic as I tend to be when thinking about the more right wing elements I happen to find myself associated with on social media from time to time. This was a humbling realisation. Will this stop me being smug and sarcastic? Probably not. But it was something of a wake up call to have the other side treat me with the same contempt.

I don’t agree with the subject matter, but I feel that Chris could have made a far better podcast, if only he hadn’t been in such a rush to rely on boring cliches. He obviously has skill as a writer. Hopefully his next project will show his true talent.

You can get Safe Society here:


For more great podcast reviews, I recommend GreatPods.

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