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Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Third Semi-Annual Avery Awards!

The next Official Podcast is out, and we finally hear the winners of this season's Avery Awards. This episode was created by The Ceiling Fan Podcast, and has many allusions and references to the podcast for fans of the show, so the sound design is more creative and interesting than usual, and there are a variety of situations. The podcast was pretty corny, but still fairly enjoyable. I must quickly be getting too old to be all that amused by these things. ;)

Well, as has been with the previous two Avery Awards Ceremonies, I was a little (okay, maybe a lot) dissatisfied. What I voted for, for the most part, wasn't the majority's opinion, and thus didn't win, but I can deal with it. This time, though, especially in the actor/actress nominations, it seemed like it was more based on the popularity of the character than the talent of the actor/actress.

For those of you who don't have time to listen to the podcast, here are my votes, the actual winners, and my opinions about the selections:

Best Actor:

My Vote: David Selby as Jebidiah Skint
Actual Winner: Robby Bruce as Buck Oliver

I could have predicted this, but it still annoys me. I seem to be one of the only people who really didn't like Robby Bruce's acting. Throughout almost the whole album he sounded like he was faking his accent, and it just distracted me from liking his character--whereas Mr. Selby played his part wonderfully. His accent was perfect, and he was a perfect cast for the part. I enjoyed hearing from him throughout the whole album, but it was always with hesitation because I knew we'd be hearing from Buck. I think this category was based more on the huge popularity of Buck among younger listeners (as we'll see later), than it was about Robby's performance as an actor.

Best Actress:

My Vote: Kimmy Robertson as Penny Wise
Actual Winner: Kimmy Robertson as Penny Wise

I was glad to hear that my choice won in this category, but I suspect that it was for different reasons than most others chose Ms. Robertson. I chose her because I thought she did a wonderful job with her acting. She pulled off sounding like a young college student even though she is over fifty, I believe. In fact, if I remember correctly, she's older than Katie Leigh! So this category was a very easy choice for me. However, my guess is that the reason Ms. Robertson received the award is because Penny was the most popular female character of the season, which I simply disagree with. She seemed to bring out the worst in nearly everyone she came in contact with, so I almost wish she hadn't won the award.

Best New Character:

My Vote: Detective Don Polehaus
Actual Winner: Buck Oliver

I wish I could see how close the votes were, because although Buck seemed to be pretty popular among younger listeners, I wouldn't have thought he'd win this one. I picked Detective Polehaus because, honestly, he was the only new character I liked. If you don't count Monty or Jason, which you shouldn't because they weren't included in the nominees, he was the funniest and most interesting character introduced. I'm fairly certain that if Phil Procter was included in the Best Actor category, I wouldn't have thought twice about my choice, because he did such a good job; I almost never heard any hint of Leonard Meltsner's voice, which surprised me. Even though, at times, the detective seemed a little naive and unprofessional, it never got too bad (unless you're Marvin), so I hold him as my favorite new character.

However...Buck...urgh. He seemed to bring out the worst in everybody too. He made Emily fall for him and that brought a very annoying aspect to this season. As I've said before, I don't understand why we have to have a "love story" everywhere these days. You can't get away from it anymore, and it never ceases to annoy me. Young kids (yes, I'm calling 8-12 young) don't need that kind of stuff put in their heads. It only leads to flirting, bad relationships and heartbreak. And their even younger siblings certainly don't need to hear all that. It just drives me crazy--all in Christian love of course. ;) But then there was all that junk that Katrina was telling him too. I know that that message is very prevalent in the church today: "You have a good heart, but you have problems that Jesus can fix. Just accept Him into your heart and everything will be okay." Now that causes righteous indignation; I can justly be driven crazy by that. But knowing what I now know about Paul McCusker, I guess I shouldn't be too surprised. I don't want to point a finger at him personally, but it is because there's now a different religious perspective on the Odyssey team that their messages must be more wishy-washy. What Katrina says to Buck throughout the season would neither be offensive to Catholics nor the popular evangelical movement, but AIO doesn't seem to realize that it is because of that very fact that people like me are offended. The gospel is offensive. Jesus "came not to bring peace, but a sword." His message of sin, righteousness and judgement should offend people, and it is not our job to water it down. Alright, I'll stop now.

Best "Whitta-Cliffhanger":

My Vote: Monty Is One of the Plane Crash Victims!
Actual Winner: The Infamous Stiletto Is Really Jason Whittaker!

This one was a tough choice, because both Jason's and Monty's returns were very exciting to hear about. But because the news of Jason's return had already leaked to me before I heard the "Whitta-Cliffhanger" at the end of the episode, I chose the other one. However, now that I think about it, I sort of already knew about Monty's return as well, because Amazon released 10- to 15-second clips of each episode before the season aired on the radio, and I remember Monty was discreetly mentioned in one of them, so I knew about both epic returns before either happened. Hopefully that won't happen the next time AIO puts out a season-long mystery with some surprising returning characters. :D

Best Quote:

My Vote:
Buck: You have a thing about big trucks?
Jay: Oh yeah. Ever since I was a kid, you know, (makes truck noises)
Buck: If you want to make friends, don't ever do noises like that again, OK?
Jay: Yeah.

Actual Winner:
Buck: You have a thing about big trucks?
Jay: Oh yeah. Ever since I was a kid, you know, (makes truck noises)
Buck: If you want to make friends, don't ever do noises like that again, OK?
Jay: Yeah.

That exchange was hilarious! 'Nuf said.

Best Writer:

My Vote: I honestly don't remember because it was so ridiculous. (But it may have been "Paul E. McCusker.")
Actual Winner: Paul McCusker.

I already expressed my main negative thoughts about Mr. McCusker's writing, so now I'll shoot for the positive thoughts. This was actually a good mystery, in my opinion. For the most part, it kept all of us guessing until the true villain was revealed. It didn't seem like an unrealistic take-over-the-country operation; I thought it was pretty clever. Some were afraid that the writers would try to create a world domination plot that would seem way too fanciful, having been only developed over twelve episodes. But I thought that it was very convincing that Mr. Grote chose to try to break down America by distributing millions, if not billions of counterfeit dollars. Mr. McCusker could easily be a big mastermind behind a counterfeiting scheme, because it's really a good idea. (The evil in my nature thinks it would be something fun to try. ;D)

So anyway, great job Odyssey! Even though there are many things I personally would have done and not done with this album, it was satisfactory, and I have enjoyed listening to the saga a few times now that I own the album. Please share your thoughts with me about what you thought of this season's Avery Awards in the comments!


  1. I agree, Buck and Penny weren't exactly the best choices, but I do like the quote!

    But...Paul couldn't do it now, because tons of AIO fans know about it! xD

  2. Totally agree about Buck, considering the other actors on the list, the choice of Robby Bruce is rather disappointing. As far as best character goes, that too was annoying. In my opinion Polehaus and Skint were much more realistic and likable than the wanna-be-good character/villain/who-knows-what Buck (with a fake accent) if I may be so blunt. I suppose however, that some listeners might find these annoyances to be likable, including the accent. I believe I voted for Monty in the Whitta-Cliffhanger category. To me it was more surprising because Jason has become somewhat of a "Richard Maxwell," appearing where things happen, and this was Monty's first appearance since he was a boy. Anyway, sorry about the long comment, thanks for the post, good to see others thoughts on the season's awards.

  3. Don't be sorry for the long comment. I love reading long comments! I'm glad there's someone else who agrees with me about all this stuff, and it's good to know you enjoy reading my posts.