19 Nocturne Boulevard, created and run by audio dramatist Julie Hoverson, features original and adapted “strange stories” – the podcast alternates between completed productions, like the one below, and diary entry style production notes. I was mightily impressed by Hoverson’s adaptation of Robert Sheckley’s Science Fiction short story The Leech when I heard it back in February! It’s a terrific production by a talented cast. Hoverson has crafted her skill to a keen edge. I was jazzed to hear that she’d undertaken a new production of an H.P. Lovecraft classic, The Thing On The Doorstep which is a novelette first published in the January 1937 issue of Weird Tales.
I’m a sucker for stories with “Thing” in the title. A THING is not a he or a she. It isn’t a describable something – in fact, it’s very indescribability makes it damn intriguing – you, and the characters in the stories, ask questions “What the hell is that thing?!?!?!”
Now DC Comics had the Swamp Thing (a plant elemental) and Marvel had the Man-Thing (a “slow-moving, empathic, humanoid” that had once been a man). But it’s in short fiction especially that I find THINGS compelling. And when you start looking for these THINGS you’ll find dozens and dozens of stories with THING in the title. A couple of other good ones include The Damned Thing by Ambrose Bierce and The Thing On The Roof by Robert E. Howard. And in movies, of course, there is John Carpenter’s The Thing.
Now the particular THING in on this particular doorstep in Julie Hoverson’s adaptation is a whole other thing. I won’t give away, but I will say it certainly lives up to the mysterious nouny goodness of the title.
Lovecraft’s tales can be difficult to adapt, as they’re unusually wholly bereft of actual dialogue between characters (if there is even more than one character!). Julie Hoverson dramatizes the story’s form, which is a kind of confession/statement to police, using a combination of flashbacks and interrogation room scenes to tell the tale. The sound design is good, allowing us to tell who is who and where is where. The acting is also pretty solid with most of the lines coming off as if recorded live on set. Have a listen!
The Thing On The Doorstep
Based on the story by H.P. Lovecraft; Adapted by Julie Hoverson; Performed by a full cast
1 |MP3| – Approx. 33 Minutes [RADIO DRAMA]
Podcaster: 19 Nocturne Boulevard
Podcast: August 15, 2011
What does a man do when his new bride really, really wants his body?.
Dan Upton – Mark Olson
Officer Flatbush – Reynaud LeBoeuf
Officer Malone – Danar Hoverson
Edward Derby – Paul Cram (imdb)
Asenath Derby – Angela Kirby
Jean – Julie Hoverson
Clerk – Suzanne Dunn
Orderly – Gene Thorkildsen
Dr. Castle – Marshal Latham
“Roman” girl – Gwendolyn Jensen-Woodard
Music from the first soundtrack album from the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast
Editing and Sound – Julie Hoverson
Cover Design – Brett Coulstock
Podcast feed: http://nineteennocturne.libsyn.com/rss
Posted by Jesse Willis