Quick question, don’t think about it: a literal giant with tree branches growing out of his head appears out of the water, and do you: A) run screaming at the horror of a literal giant appearing out of the ocean, you knew there were monsters in there, you just knew it; B) check the news to see how the military is going to take care of this, it’s what they do, isn’t it? It is, isn’t it? or C) follow him and eventually hitch a ride on his shoulder to see if he does stuff or is just on the longest mission to get nibbles on the other side of the country? …Madyson picks C, because that’s the obvious answer. Welcome to the world of The Behemoth, the first audio drama published by the now prolific Rick Coste of Modern Audio Drama.
The Behemoth focuses around a teenager named Madyson, who, disillusioned with her home life and interested in the giant she comes to call Max, follows and in a way protects him in her journey across the country. I was lucky enough to come across the show while the episodes were still being released, and the style of the show was a totally new experience for me. The portrayal of Madyson, at times worried, interested, or just bored, played into the character’s age, and brought a sense of realism to the story that was rather surprising. Despite the fact that the feeling I had listening to the show was that Madyson was going to be fine no matter what happened, the risk of attack from the military against Max, and by extension her for refusing to leave his side, built up a tension that pushes the listener to continue in the story world.
Despite the fact that the episodes are only around 10 minutes long, I never had the feeling that they were rushed, or were too short to cover the intended ground. It’s a testament to Rick Coste’s writing that he was able to so successfully walk the line between telling a complete story in a short format show, without creating an overly dense episode.
It’s rather fantastic to see audio drama being produced which works for both a younger and older audience, without compromising on the quality of the storytelling. It feels as though the majority of audio dramas being produced today are more heavily focused on more adult/mature audiences, and it’s really rather refreshing to have a show that could be shared with one’s kids, younger siblings, or listened to as a family. If you want to check out more of Rick Coste’s work, check out his site here. He’s got a larger back catalog than a year’s publishing time would make you think is possible, and all of it’s worth checking out!