Podcast Review #33: Transistor Rodeo

Title: Transistor Rodeo
Author: Mark Yoshimoto Nemcoff
Genre: Science Fiction/Cowboy Punk
Released: 8 April 2008 – 17 April 2009
Located: Author’s Site
Formats Available: Podcast only
Rating: PG for robotic violence. This is a family friendly podcast.

In April of 2008 I had way more time on my hands than I would have hoped for and was rabidly searching for podfiction. Although at this point I was on Twitter, I was more of a by stander than a part of the community (slow learner I guess). Rather than ask for opinions I simply browsed Podiobooks.com and listened to anything that caught my attention. Some were great, some were much the other end of the spectrum. I had never heard of Mark Yoshimoto Nemcoff but had found an assassin story (Number One with a Bullet) that I had enjoyed so was willing to take a chance on him again (a policy I will probably always adhere to).

Transistor Rodeo was billed as a family friendly podcast, which truly I don’t know if I’d run into before this point, but I have always been a fan of rodeo (hey, I did grow up in Wyoming after all) and enjoy animatronic AI’s as much as the next guy. I also have an 11 year old son that I was looking for something I could share with.

So, on to the review.

Synopsis: When a bunch of robotic cowboys and robotic animals from a big-budget spectacular mechanical traveling show go haywire and escape into the city of Los Angeles, it’s up to one broken down ex-rodeo star and his son to round them all up before something terrible happens.(stolen from the author’s site) [I would like to humbly recommend to author’s that the provided synopsis is an example of “inadequate”. I really like to know as much as I can before subscribing. I’ll take a chance occasionally, but a good synopsis is the hook.]

Production: Mr. Nemcoff is a professional in this area I believe. The production on his podcasts are very good. At least those that I have listened to. I will say that Transistor Rodeo is almost too slick at times. I also have never enjoyed the use of the author asking the audience questions as a tool to try to get them to make guesses of future episodes. Foreshadowing should be provided to accomplish this, or simply surprise me.

Cast: Mr. Nemcoff does a straight read in that he voices all of the characters. He isn’t a Sigler or a Hutchins, but he does a more than adequate job of bringing the characters to life.

Story: This is an interesting mixture of the western genre mixed with Jurassic Park and Westworld (you know, the one with Yul). I have never heard anything like it. It definitely captured my attention and I did enjoy it. The episodes are relatively short and at 24 episodes, I’d consider this one almost a novella, although I have no idea of word count. Some of the characters became annoying after a while, but that is a good thing. At least for me.

Unfortunately, the release schedule was ridiculous. It began fairly regularly, but fell apart at the end. It was two months between the release of episodes 22 and 23, and a huge eight months between episodes 23 and the finale episode 24. I truthfully gave up before it was released, but later came back and picked it up.

Verdict: I will recommend this story, though I know it isn’t for everyone. It is candy. Not filling, but fun. Especially if you have teen or preteen boys (and/or were raised on John Wayne movies). I will say that at times Mr. Nemcoff’s style of continually trying to keep the action at a breakneck pace was a little tiring, but overall, he did do a good job of it. If you have never heard a story quite like the one described here, I recommend you give it an episode or four to see what you think.

Disclosure: I have no idea if Mr. Nemcoff is even on Twitter. I have not heard his worked ever discussed in the group that I follow, though I seem to remember him doing a voice guest appearance on something I was listening too. I was neither offered or received anything for writing this review.

~ by odin1eye on 14 June, 2010.

3 Responses to “Podcast Review #33: Transistor Rodeo”

  1. Awesome review as always, and yes you may want to follow http://www.twitter.com/myn 😉

  2. I’m not one to get on my soapbox about release schedules (cause that would make me a MONSTROUS hypocrite) but I will say that regular releases are very important to some. I’m sure I lost a listener or two on Legion. Can’t prove it, but I can only imagine. And if memory serves this happened with Mark’s Number One with a Bullet or whatever it was called.

    • Thanks Scott. I had only listened to Number One with a Bullet when it was complete, so I don’t know. Transistor Radio was removed from podiobooks because of the release issues and still only has a partial number of eps on iTunes… seriously was a year to get the last 2 eps out. Wow.

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