Welcome to Just Another AIO Blog, a site that is dedicated to the popular radio drama Adventures in Odyssey. We provide news, reviews on the latest episodes, articles, features, and we also are home to Adventures in Connellsville, a unique look at the town next to Odyssey through book form, We also provide a U.S.S. Response page that gets updated every other day. This page provides a response to recent comments on The Soda Shop Message Boards. And just recently, we started a unique Adventures in Odyssey podcast: called JAAIOP, or Just Another AIO Podcast. Feel free to post comments or subscribe to this site by email or with Google Friend Connect. Thank you!

Alex Jefferson, creator and operator of Just Another AIO Blog

Thursday, August 2, 2012

AIO Article: Wooton and Penny: The Deathly Serious Controversy 8/2/12

     Once again, sorry this post is a little late. I'm starting to get busier with my real life, and I can't be online as much as I was in July. But, I'm back, but I don't have to write much, because, I have for you a brilliantly written article by none other than Pound Foolish! Here it is:

     Wooton & Penny: The Deathly Serious Controversy
By Pound Foolish

     We have the Olympics because of individuals, not deeds. Deeds alone are nothing to us, what stirs us are those who do the deeds. Jessica Ennis makes people talk about the triathlon, and Jade Jones sparks conversations about Taekwondo. They show us, through their deeds, that they are here to fight to the heights of the extraordinary. If the same deeds, contests, struggles, were done by a variety of different people, rather than all emblemized in a single individual, they would pass unnoticed.
      We know the greatness of deeds because those who do them, who sweat out, struggle through, and live within, the impossible.
      Basketball would be just a game if it wasn’t for people like Michael Jordan. Painting would just be moving a brush around if it wasn’t for people like Renoir, Monet, and Michelangelo. Singing would just be…
Recently, Wooton, one of AIO’s most beloved characters, fell in love, as we know. He’d done it before, but, this time, we knew the candidate to be Christian. They can be together. Will it happen?
Many fans, according to the online buzz, frown on the idea. Some find Penny and Wooton silly and unentertaining together. Some argue their similarities make the match uninteresting, or even that Penny is just a female Wooton. Some think Wooton would evolve out of his goofball, immature attitude. Finally, some just plain don’t like Penny.
      In order for Penny and Wooton to justify their romance’s existence, unless it is intended only for comedy, it must be not just a deed, but a deed that shows us intriguing sides of themselves as people… and Penny must be a worthwhile person for Wooton. But is the question really , is she good for Wooton? Perhaps we should as is Wooton good for Penny…
      After all, don’t girls have any rights here! Why are the boys always the center of attention! What about equality!? What about grrrl pow… sorry, got carried away. Anyhow, Penny just isn’t a girl Wooton, she’s very different. Wooton would change, some, but in a good way. And as for not liking Penny… what are you, nuts!?
     As I said, some dislike the combination of Penny and Wooton. Some find them too much alike. Too enthusiastic, loud, and obnoxious together. Well, live with it. This is a children’s show. Children are used to Disney Channel and The Cartoon Network, overflowing with nutty characters behaving crazily together. If you aren’t willing accept this, get out. I know that sounds like I’m being grouchy. Yet, the fact remains, this show isn’t made for us… So, should we try to dumb down to a child’s level when listening to an AIO? Nope. We should realize we are not dumbing down. We’re just enjoying an art form made, really, for kids. To paraphrase C.S. Lewis, good children’s entertainment is still good to adults.
We need to accept AIO on its own terms. Kids’ terms. Not ours. Take it or leave it.
      Others think Penny and Wooton’s similarity makes them implausible and unentertaining. There’s no friction or risk in their relationship, the argument goes. “Oh, darn. Penny and Wooton are so similar. Penny’s just a female Wooton. It’s just not interesting.” Really? Penny was, as many of us AIO fans know, intended to be a bad guy, who seemed good and then turned out to be in league with Dr. Trask. She wasn’t meant to stick around and be Wooton’s girlfriend, that just wasn’t her purpose. I doubt the AIO team decided…
     Nathan Hoobler: “How about we have Penny be another girl-Wooton? Oh, and how about she’s a bad-guy?”
     Dave Arnold: “LOL, let’s do it!”
     The fact is, Penny just likes licorice and is somewhat goofy. If she was rarely seen with Wooton, would we even notice her supposed over-similarity? Penny is into the study of art and has the sophistication to listen to long art lectures and the patience to put pen or brush to surface for however long is necessary. And she even is philosophically wide-eyed to the world, enjoying meditation and frequently thinking on her emotions and person. Now, refresh my memory… when was the last time Wooton languidly sat, drinking a grape-juice float and painting an imitation Renoir, chit-chatting with Connie about philosophy?
     Penny has her own personality. The more they are together, the more it shows. Far from too similar, if they date, or are married, their differences will emerge more and more. Penny has a heart of curiosity, wonder, and artistic fascination. Wooton has a heart of “I love everyone in the whole world” and laser tag.
Wooton would change, yes. We find this hard to accept. Most of us, after all, like Wooton as-is. He’s the best, right? (Ben Warren, you stay out of this.) One thing, as The Old Judge pointed out on his Twists and Turns site, is that there would probably be an end, or at -least a near-end, to Wooton’s occasional mail-route-episodes, in which we see him caring for everyone on his route as best friends. Sure, we’d hate this. But, though it would take a long time to get used to… isn’t the idea of Wooton caring for a wife, and maybe even children, just as tantalizing? Perhaps it’s just what’s needed to humanize him further, and to put an end the Wooton-haters who scream he is just not that funny. How could Wooton being married not be funny? It’s practically impossible.
      Connie, Eugene, Katrina, Mitch, Liz… they all matured and changed as the years went by. Maybe it’s time we let Wooton do the same. Sure, we will miss the old Wooton. But, he is already changing, before our eyes… because Penny is unconsciously slipping into the center of Wooton’s life. Wooton no longer centers around making people in general happy. He’s about making … her happy. He loves her. He cares about one girl, with his heart, and he’s changing himself for her. You didn’t know he could do that, did you? (I’m tempted to insert a smiley here, but that would be painfully unprofessional.) Wooton is developing. Is that really bad?
     It’s an odd relationship we have with AIO characters. On the one hand, they’re our role models and inspiration. On the other, they make us sad because they grow up… almost like they’re the children we can’t have yet. But, in order for us to accept their change, as with parents, we must change. Maybe it’s time we asked ourselves… do we need to change as well?
     Finally, we must address those who dislike Penny… loonies though they are. (No offense, Penny disliking organization.) Some find her “annoying”… My friend, Suzy Lou, a new writer for The Unofficial AIO Blog, sometimes has an aversion to Penny for reasons she is unsure of. She says “...she has a odd, kind of ditzy personality. Normally I enjoy characters like that, but not so much with Penny. Maybe I'll grow to like her with time, who knows.” (On a side note, she recently said she’s warming up to Penny.) Okay, I’d say another quote, though it’s on a different subject, will round things off nicely. It’s from my pal, Bryce, the creator of this site, in the USS feature… “I think a lot of fans do act like they hate the new era because there are new characters. But, change can help you change, you know, and that can be a good thing! (Listen to Back to Abnormal)… I'll bet one day they'll be saying, "When Whit Hertford got too old to be on AIO, Odyssey was horrible." or ‘"When Kimmy Robertson stopped working with them, AIO went down the tubes.” So you see, people were complaining about The Washingtons, and now they're asking them to return...”
     Dum-dah-dah, there you have it. Penny’s new here. Give the girl a chance. When Connie came to town, she was a bit of a brat. A likeable one, but a bit of a brat, nonetheless.
     As I’ve been saying, Penny has artistic instinct… a wandering, open, philosophic spirit… another thing: a voice, courtesy of the ingenious Kimmy Robertson, that shines. I love her. But she had to become a major character overnight, so it’s understandable a lot of fans are having a hard time adjusting. But the kid has potential. Some fans, I guess, will always just dislike her. We are all cursed with something called taste. But, eventually, Penny shall have just as many fans as all the other major AIO characters.
     Penny and Wooton are entertaining together. Penny isn’t a Wooton with a Miley Cyrus figure, she’s her own person. And Wooton will never lose his, but if he shows his maturity and grows in responsibility more… well, we’ll just have to take that. And some will dislike Penny, some will enjoy her. That’s the way characters, and most things in artistic matters, are. But, as far as rounded character, believability, likability… and potential for even better things to come… she’s a good character.
     So... maybe Penny and Wooton’s deeds speak for themselves. They’ve spoken. They like each other. Maybe Penny and Wooton have shown they love each other. Maybe their laughing together, agreement, enthusiasm… whether it annoys us or not, are all signs of love. And, maybe, they matter.
They call for change. In them. In us. Because the deeds are done by two special people.
And that’s part of what makes love special. Sometimes, amazing people fall in love. Brought together by God.
     So, who knows? Perhaps, someday, (inside joke alert) Penny and Wooton will be picking out china patterns together.

     That was amazing, wasn't it? I'm so honored that he inserted a quote from me, considering it was such an absolutely fabulous, well thought article. That's one of the reasons I brought PF on to write articles. So we could have long, fascinating articles along with my short, consice articles. If he agrees, I'm hoping to get him writing an article every two weeks or so, so get used to this awesomeness!
     Thanks for reading!


  1. I loved it! It was attention-grabbing, entertaining, and just awesome.
    PF should definitely do more articles!

  2. I'm a bit late...but this, indeed, quite a splendid post. I'm looking forward to seeing more articles from you, Pound Foolish!

  3. I'm super late, but this was amazing!!!!