Why You Should Be Listening to “Welcome to Night Vale”

07.29.13 / night vale
Do you like weird, creepy stories? I do. Always have. In middle school, I would take books from the library on ghost hunting, bringing them home and taking notes before they had to be returned. (I don’t know why my middle school library had books on ghost hunting.) Then I’d imagine searching out my own ghosts (and still do), pretending there were some in my house. I watch every show on ghosts, the paranormal, and the general unknown as often as I can, my favorite topics being ghosts and aliens, though I do indulge in the occasional Bigfoot or Nessie search. Oh, and I also enjoy the “real Dracula” shows on History. And just last week we saw “The Conjuring,” and I of course couldn’t resist the “based on a true story” aspect, looking up information when we came home (as I huddled beneath the blankets instead of cooking my much desired chicken nuggets…in the kitchen…by myself–but I’m getting sidetracked).

If any of these are your kind of thing, you should be listening to “Welcome to Night Vale.”

“Welcome to Night Vale” is a bi-monthly podcast by Commonplace Books presented as “community updates on the desert town of Night Vale.” It includes talk of hooded figures, new rankings for boy scouts–including but not limited to dreadnought scout, fear scout, and eternal scout–and an outbreak of feral dogs. I mean plastic bags.

“Night Vale” is a fantastically told story, and what I really love about it–besides narrator Cecil’s adoration for the new scientist in town, Carlos–is the way it makes me think of old radio shows in the ’40s. I’ll listen to it while cleaning the apartment and imagine my grandmother doing something similar, though probably listening to a vastly different story. It’s cute to think of an updated version of something from that time period. And it requires imagination, far more than watching television does (not that I’m against watching television, as noted above).

The podcast is something I highly recommend to fans of even the slightly strange. It’s eerie, but provides a good laugh all the same. Some of the comments Cecil makes are so absurd that you can’t help but chuckle. I don’t think it’s meant to genuinely scare, but it can have its moments. For me, they usual come when creepy music starts up, and Cecil’s voice starts to get a little lower and a little slower.

You can subscribe via iTunes or on the “Welcome to Night Vale” web page.


2 thoughts on “Why You Should Be Listening to “Welcome to Night Vale”

  1. This sounds awesome. I’ve been a fan of the We’re Alive zombie podcast (very similar vein) for a while and have a soft spot for its old school, radio serial feel.

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