Anxiety of the Moon – Moon Graffiti

Today, I listened to “Moon Graffiti” to understand how the story is told through audio, without any visuals.

I like how they started this with the audio, with the story, to understand and put ourselves into the story already. They introduced a narrator after the first audio, the sound of the crash, and the narrator gave a brief introdocution. I also liked the sounds in the background of the narrator.

While they were in the spaceship, I really liked the sound that stayed present in the back, almost like waves, or like the distant, white noise of the ship. I think it was really immersive. You could tell when it changed, when they landed on the moon and were walking on it. The sound was gone, but there was still white noise, something wind-like in the background. You could also hear the footsteps and the sound of them placing the flag.

What really added to the storytelling was filtering their voices through intercom. You could really understand they were in space, they could not speak outside of their suits. You could hear the crinkle of the mics, the slight muffling of their voice. It really helped you visualize it. Sometimes, I’d close my eyes and just imagine it in my head, allow my brain to paint the picture through the audio.

When Buzz was getting stuck in his head around 11:50, as Neil was talking, you could slowly hear the white noise intensifying, getting louder. I think I also heard a clock in the back, ticking, maybe to signify that Buzz knew he was running out of time. For a moment, instead of being an observer, the listener was in Buzz’s head, hearing him freaking out and losing it. You start to feel it, too.

A lot of thought went into this storytelling, and you could tell. I just think it’s really interesting to see how all these little things made the big story! It reminded me of when we listened to an hour of Do Androids Dream of Electronic Sheep? for ds106radio. Here is my post about it.

Overall, I really like how you were able to feel and hear their frustration without seeing it, both through their intense voices, the sounds of the intercom, the white noise of the moon or ship, heavy breathing, buttons being pushed. You could feel their anxiety of the moon, of the crash.

Also, reading the comments on the story, I saw someone mention using a different sound that was distinct and really what the astronauts used, so it made me think, would it be any different with the sound? To a listener who doesn’t know the details of the sounds or the tools in the ship or the buttons or the applications of the ship and intercoms, I don’t think it would’ve changed anything for me. Maybe, to someone who is well-informed on this stuff would listen and feel disappointed for inaccuracies, because they know about it, but I don’t. I don’t know about these details, and I was still able to envision it regardless, but I think that’s really interesting!

To conclude, I just think audio stories are really cool, and this is coming from someone who needs a visual desperately. I think audio books have got to start being read like this, because it would definitely get me more interested in audio books (right now they bore me out and become monotone). I definitely can appreciate the work that gets put into audio storytelling more after actually listening to some, and watching Abumrad’s videos about the creation of it.

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