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

Saturday, October 13, 2012

AIO Review: The Perfect Church, Pt. 2 10/13/12

     I'm back! I do hope this blog doesn't turn into something like The Changing Times or The Voice of Odyssey, that pretty much specifies in reviews, but, for now, reviewing Album 56 will be just about all you'll hear from me. But here's my review of The Perfect Church, Pt. 2 anyway...

     After the cliffhanger ending of pt. 1, I was eager to hear this episode. Whoever came up with two-part radio and television episodes was an absolute genius. Not only are these super-sized episodes great for suspense, they can open up a story and take it to new heights. The Perfect Church, Pt. 2 is a perfect example of this. This next installment expanded on the original and illustrated some of the best stories in the New Testament, even if, as Ben Warren said in his excellent review, they were not witnessed by Matthew, but were told secondhandedly.
     However, I feel as if the first five minutes were the worst minutes in the episode. They seemed rushed, as if there were so many stories to tell in the Book of Acts, that the writers decided to jam about three into five minutes of audio. This was probably a bad idea. I'm not saying they should have gone larger and made it a three-parter, but they could have shortened Stephen's speech and expanded on these stories. I didn't particularly love the prison scene for this reason. (Though the voice of the angel sounded pretty cool)
     But the episode picked up after that. I enjoyed the deep discussions that the characters had. The argument between Stephen and Seth was done quite well, and some of the conversations that Matthew had with Rhoda were very interesting, and really illustrated the moral more than any scene in the first episode.
     Speaking of the moral, I was a bit puzzled about what exactly the moral would be in pt. 1. I knew Matthew would see that the church wasn't perfect, but I wasn't sure what Whit would tell him at the end. And I have to say, this is one of those life lessons you don't really think about. But it's true that I do sometimes picture the saints and patriarchs of the Bible as nearly perfect. So I'm glad this episode is out there, as it points out a moral that's not quite as obvious as lying or stealing.
     Anyway, I thought it was interesting that AIO would decide to stone Stephen... again. I honestly think that this episode bared a striking resemblance to St. Paul: The Man From Tarsaus, but I suppose AIO has illustrated many Bible stories twice, so I can forgive that. Besides, the trial was illustrated better here, I thought. Stephen's speech was fascinating and brilliant, but, as I said, it could have been shortened.
     I really, really enjoyed Georgina Dolenz's performance in this episode. I am hoping she can appear in future episodes, and have a feeling she could become a fixture on AIO. I would even say her performance as Rhoda is better than her performance as Sue. She has the perfect voice for the part, and her emotion was well conveyed in every scene she was in. I could genuinely feel scared for Stephen, though I knew of his fate, because of her tone in the scene before the trial.
     But, I said in the first episode that I noticed Matthew didn't play a big role in the episode and that I hoped he would at least do something in pt. 2. Well, I shouldn't have gotten my hopes up. Matthew's role was to spectate and learn a lesson, and I suppose that's enough, though I do wish he could have gotten involved as Sam and Rodney did in St. Paul and Eugene and Connie did in Back to Bethlehem.
     Whit's talk at the end was perfect as usual, and it wrapped the episode up nicely, before hearing the closing music, and those classic 6 notes. Those 6, beautiful notes! Ah... Never mind.
     In conclusion, these are strong, inspirational, classic Biblical AIO episodes. And though I honestly preferred Pt. 1 to pt. 2, both were well-done, though they had a couple minor flaws. But I believe we as critics can forgive minor flaws and just sit back and enjoy an episode.

     The Perfect Church (Pt. 2) Rating: 7/10

     Thanks for reading!

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