Author Topic: PseudoPod 661: The Happiest Place  (Read 165 times)

Bdoomed

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PseudoPod 661: The Happiest Place
« on: August 18, 2019, 02:59:30 AM »
PseudoPod 661: The Happiest Place

Author: Kevin Wabaunsee
Narrator: John Bell
Host: Alex Hofelich

PseudoPod 661: The Happiest Place is a PseudoPod original.



Show Notes
Spoiler (click to show/hide)



Everyone knows the edge of the Kingdom of Fun out near the wall is the riskiest place to work. So of course, that’s where they put me on my first day. But it’s OK, I’ve trained for this. I have been thoroughly tested on my knowledge of the rules and th­­e procedures involved. I’m well-equipped to handle a shift in Cartoon Town or the Forests of Delight, or yes, even Magic Mainstreet. But pulling duty on the ‘street my first time out is really throwing me in the deep end. Magic Mainstreet is out on the edge, and one of the biggest draws of the Kingdom of Fun. When the Mainstreet gates swing open, a throng of guests surge through. They’re here to listen to the barbershop-quartet renditions of familiar top-40 hits and eat butterscotch kettle corn or pumpkin roasted walnuts or the legendary buttered marshmallow dumplings, all those sweet aromas filling my nostrils. And, of course, they’re here to see me and my foam-head compatriots bobble and traipse up and down the bright red cobblestones.

No matter how many smiling faces I see, though, I stay on constant alert. Out here, where the razor-wire walls are only a few hundred yards away , there are some special considerations. I’m not just weaving a magical amusement experience for the guests. I’m also doing my damnedest to protect the guests from what the Funventors have termed “the unwanted encroachment of reality.”




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Scuba Man

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Re: PseudoPod 661: The Happiest Place
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2019, 04:26:25 PM »
Okay, now THIS was an awesomely evil story. The narrator hooked me in and I was able to visualize this distopian amusement park. The hidden razor wire barricades hidden in the bushes... the strategically released odours to mask the smell of burning townships, sewage, or whatever ELSE was dead or dying outside the Happiest-Place was clever. The security teams (or Quality Assurance supervisors) with their reflective visors and bunny ears (?!) was an unnerving image. Nice!  8) The narrator had me hooked and captured the idealism and the corporate-buy-in of our foam, dogheaded character.

My only problem with the story was its abrupt ending. The story came across as unfinished. We see our...
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

I'm satisfied with an unresolved ending. In the movie, Inception, the 'true' fate of the Matt Damon character is unknown (did he reach the waking world and his children... or is he still locked up in a lucid dream). His totem keeps spinning, and then.......fade to black. I liked this ending because a conversation between movie viewers can ensure.

Strong start... intriguing middle act.... secrets are about to be revealed... and 'cut'.  ??? ??? ??? :o
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negativer

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Re: PseudoPod 661: The Happiest Place
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2019, 02:53:34 PM »
My only problem with the story was its abrupt ending. The story came across as unfinished. We see our...
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

I'm satisfied with an unresolved ending. In the movie, Inception, the 'true' fate of the Matt Damon character is unknown (did he reach the waking world and his children... or is he still locked up in a lucid dream). His totem keeps spinning, and then.......fade to black. I liked this ending because a conversation between movie viewers can ensure.

Strong start... intriguing middle act.... secrets are about to be revealed... and 'cut'.  ??? ??? ??? :o

I like that Scuba Man made this comment, because I feel the same way. A lot of times with open-ended endings, I'm left to wonder if I missed something, misinterpreted something, or generally didn't 'get' the story. That said, I don't mind it if it's clear that the ending is...not clear. This one was at least fairly clear, but I had to re-read the end a couple times to make sure I hadn't missed some small clue that would tell us the fate of our hero.

Bigger picture, in this story, I love the world and the hints of bad things beyond the park (which I pretty much read as a copy of DisneyWorld, down to the actors who have to stay in character until they reach the staff lounge and minders who keep them from getting kicked in the nads). I enjoyed the casual writing and the almost lighthearted storyline, which stayed fairly upbeat until the end when bad things started happening to our MC in costume. A good read!

Scattercat

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Re: PseudoPod 661: The Happiest Place
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2019, 12:41:19 AM »
Honestly, after listening to a lot of Behind the Bastards and his semi-companion podcast It Could Happen Here, I'd have been fine with just an exploration of how Disneyland would adapt to operating and maintaining its precious illusions during active wartime, with shades of "Masque of the Red Death" and the hints of underlying fascism.  I felt like the "trapped in a costume" and "turning into a cartoon monster freak" angle were unnecessary and kind of detracted from the core horror premise. 
« Last Edit: August 26, 2019, 01:01:32 AM by Scattercat »
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