With the amount of digital entertainment in this day and age, you'd think radio would be dead. But it's still alive and kicking though has evolved into something a little more frightening courtesy of Glass Eye Pictures Larry Fessenden and Glenn McQuaid. Tales from Beyond the Pale is the evolution of horror radio. It's also an evolution in the horror genre. It's been a long time since the two have blended but Glass Eye Pictures has created a 21st century audio cocktail that had me on the edge of my seat.
You should already know Glass Eye Pictures as the studio that has brought you I Sell the Dead, The House of the Devil and Stakeland. But this newest project brings horror radio back from the dead and I gotta tell you it's fantastic.
At only half an hour each, each tale is filled with a story that is cunningly enticing and downright macabre. So far only 3 stories have been released and I had a chance to listen to the first two. With the voice talents of Vincent D'Onofrio and Ron Perlman, these aren't your golden oldies. These all have great actors and writers that weave a tale that give you a chill down your spine.
Here are a couple of brief reviews of the first 2 episodes.
Man on the Ledge
Written and directed by Joe Maggio
Starring: Vincent D'Onofrio and Larry Fessenden (and others)
As the title says, a man on the ledge thinks about his life as police try to talk him down. D'Onofrio plays John Alba whose life has spiraled out of control. The premise is only the trigger that enables the twists and turns to happen in this twisted tale.
The show is complete with audio stimuli from NYC sounds to police radio. These little touches make you feel like you're there. D'Onofrio is brilliant as a man who not only seems to be in utter despair but disturbed as well. The dialogue is clearly filled with rants of dubious monologue, colorful analogies and conversation that make you think.
It's all of this that makes Man on the Ledge feel oddly real. You will never look at a suicidal man about to jump the same way again after hearing this tale (because I'm sure you all do this all the time :-P)
British & Proud
Written and directed by Simon Rumley
The second episode of Tales from Beyond the Pale takes Western paranoia to a new level. British & Proud follows Sebastian, a British dude who marries Zalika, an African beauty as they vacation to visit her family in Sudan, Africa.
Let me just say the difference between TFBTP and other horror radio is that they don't just rehash old urban legends or horror short stories but we get to listen to NEW stories told in such a creative way complete with sound effects and performances of the highest caliber.
So many different themes are explored in British & Proud. Western imperialism, identity and love. As Sebastian uses his heart rather than his head, you start to empathize with him and his situation. But sometimes, when you keep it real, it can go wrong.
British & Proud is maliciously evil and uniquely mesmerizing. You really start to listen to each word, to each noise and especially to each scream at 100%. You know many of these tales won't end well, but you can't help but listen.
Horror fans and bloggers, this is a must download. So turn off your TV, shut off the game console and before you shut down your computer, download Tales from Beyond the Pale. Horror radio-casting is your new form of entertainment and it's here to scare the hell out of you.