When I got asked to review Red Moon , I had a certain apprehension, but an equal fascination and I must admit, to being attracted to spending some time out of a busy day listening to audio with my eyes closed and my mind being immersed into the expected story. That said, I had to find the time as I really didn’t know what to expect.
Well what an amazing experience with my first delve into audio dramas. I hold my hand up to say that I wouldn’t have thought that an audio drama would catch my attention, after all, I tend to listen to music all the time, but there I was, thoroughly enjoying the experience. This story is refreshing against the cold-war espionage thrillers that have been written before. This is a cold-war thriller with a difference because this is an alternative history story based on the account that Russia beat the USA to the Moon in 1968.
Lets get started, Red Moon, in it’s own admission, is a cold-war based drama centred around the main character, Eddie Sloper, played admirably by Philip Bulcock. Eddie Sloper soon ends up on a trail that leads to the possible destruction of the planet and assisted along by our heroine, Dr. Susan Madison, played convincingly by Yasmine Holness-Dove. I would like to say at this point that both the two main actors and the ensemble cast ALL play their parts perfectly and with passion. Eddie Sloper, by his nature of being part of MI6, has to be very shady and secretive. The character of Eddie Sloper, at times, and this really isn’t fair to Philip Bulcock as he’s very good at what he does, sounded a bit plain and dull but I chalk that up to the way the character was written and certainly not Philip’s ability. That is the only fault I can comment on because the story did its job, it got me hooked, and so much so that I will definitely listen to this again. The character of Lt. Gen. Atherton is played by a great character actor called William Hope, and if that name rings a bell, then cast your mind back to the film Aliens and the very timid and indecisive Lieutenant Gorman, William Hope’s character, although not as much in the story as Eddie Sloper, still makes a commanding impact in his scenes.
It’s a good point to comment that the team behind the scenes, the background sound affects were amazing. I really felt as if I was in amongst a gun shoot-out at one point and travelling along in a car the next. It’s very difficult to not spoil this for someone who hasn’t had the pleasure of listening to this masterpiece yet, there is so much to comment on but I must resist. All I will say is really listen to the background, immerse yourself in the audio and you will find yourself in the action, or walking down a corridor with Dr. Madison, or just hearing a sigh of relief from Eddie Sloper as he narrowly misses getting taken out by a bad guy.
Verdict: All in all this is an amazing production and everyone involved in creating this should pat themselves on the back. I can imagine that it is more difficult to convey and portray a storyline with action in it in an audio than in a visual drama and they 100% nailed it. The storyline wasn’t drab, it was intriguing and at some points slowed down so that the listener could catch up. Well written, well directed and well acted. It allows you to make your own assumptions and keeps you guessing as to who the bad guy’s are and what they could be up to but this story is refreshing against the cold-war espionage thrillers that have been written before. I loved the whole experience and am off to listen to it again!