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Alex Jefferson, creator and operator of Just Another AIO Blog

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The 100 Greatest AIO Episodes Of All Time (In My Opinion) 8/28/13

     Well guys, I've finally completed it.  It was quite a grand project, and I hope some of you at least sort of agree with it.  What is it, you ask?  Why, The 100 Greatest AIO Episodes of All Time!  I will be writing a quick paragraph for #10 - #1 on why the episode deserves to be in the top 10.  So, without further ado, here they are, in order, from the 100th Greatest Episode to the Greatest:

 #100: Relatively Annoying

#99: Into Temptation

#98: Prequels of Love

#97: License To Deprive

#96: Tom For Mayor

#95: Secrets

#94: Opportunity Knocks

#93: War of the Words

#92: The Top Floor

#91: A New Era

#90: Telamachus

#89: First-Hand Experience

#88: The Imagination Station, Revisited

#87: The Jubilee Singers

#86: Last In a Long Line

#85: Odyssey Sings!

#84: Two Sides To Every Story

#83: Prisoners of Fear

#82: The Chosen One

#81: Plan B: Resistance

#80: Truth, Trivia, and ‘Trina

#79: A Prayer For George Barcaly

#78: I Want My B-TV!

#77: Sheep’s Clothing

#76: The Return

#75: Coming Of Age

#74: Red Herring

#73: The Highest Stakes

#72: Hold Up!

#71: Sergeant York

#70: Always

#69: It Is Well

#68: Over the Airwaves

#67: A Lamb’s Tale

#66: A Bite of Applesauce

#65: Broken Window

#64: The Painting

#63: The Turning Point

#62: My Girl Hallie

#61: The Labyrinth

#60: My Fair Bernard

#59: Tornado!

#58: Living In the Gray

#57: The Pact

#56: The Visitors

#55: First Love

#54: Pokenberry Falls, R.F.D.

#53: Top This!

#52: Thank You, God

#51: It Happened At Four Corners

#50: The Triangled Web

#49: Hidden In My Heart

#48: Something Blue

#47: A Question About Tasha

#46: License To Drive

#45: A Most Intriguing Question/A Most Surprising Answer/A Most Extraordinary Conclusion

#44: Love Is In the Air

#43. For Whom the Wedding Bell Tolls

#42: The Twilife Zone

#41: I Slap Floor

#40: Two Friends and a Truck

#39: A Touch of Healing

#38: Connie Comes To Town

#37: Aloha, Oy!

#36: It’s a Pokenberry Christmas!

#35: Suspicious Minds

#34: The Search For Whit

#33: Sunday Morning Scramble

#32: Plan B: Collision Course

#31: The Underground Railroad

#30: Castles and Cauldrons

#29: Exit

#28: Karen

#27: A Name, Not A Number

#26: The Perfect Witness

#25: The Mysterious Stranger

#24: Unto Us A Child Is Born

#23: Back to Bethlehem

#22: The Battle

#21: The Triangle

#20: Greater Love

#19: Clara

#18: No Way Out/No Way In

#17: Gone/…But Not Forgotten

#16: Recollections

#15: Where Is Thy Sting?

#14: The Nemesis

#13: Waylaid In the Windy City

#12: A Lesson From Mike

#11: The Imagination Station

#10: Someone To Watch Over Me: It's just, in general, a classic staple of the brilliance of early AIO.  It combines action, heart, spirituality, and a constant sense of adventure in a mind-boggling melting pot of beauty.  It's my favorite Jimmy episode of all time and I think many would agree it deserves to be here.

#9: Do Or Diet: This may come as a shock to some, as "Do Or Diet" seems to be a very minor episode at first.  It's a simple comedy with a simple plot and few characters.  It's mismashed with all the other episodes from that season, and it's not built to stand out.  But it achieves its purpose (to entertain and amuse) far better than any comedy AIO has ever produced.  It's Kathy Werienga's crown jewel as a writer, and it deserves the Top 10.

#8: Connie: Fairly self-explanatory, I suppose.  Connie had only been around Odyssey for about a year at this time, but her conversion is extremely powerful nonetheless, and the flashback scenes are done extremely well.  But who can forget Eugene's appearance in the episode as well?  Strangely enough, my favorite scene of the episode is Eugene's entrance into Whit's End.

#7: The Green Ring Conspiracy: This is probably the most shocking placement of all (except maybe the #1), but I wholeheartedly believe it's a masterpiece, just like Darkness Before Dawn and Novacom.  Except there's one difference: DBD and Novacom weren't all one episode.  GRC is.  If it was split into different episodes, do you think I would place any of them this high?  Heck, no.  But when looked at as a complete package, GRC is a truly fascinating web of intrigue and suspense.  Almost like a psychological thriller in that it has no action, but manages to seem suspenseful the entire time.

#6: The Case of the Secret Room: Again, pretty self-explanatory.  It's the first true AIO mystery, and easily the best.  The story itself is well known to all AIO fans, and there are enough twists and turns to keep first-time listeners guessing.  But, of course, the greatest line of the show is one word: "Whitake-rrr".

#5: The Final Conflict: This deserves to be here because of the tunnel scene with Blackgaard and Jack alone.  Probably in the top 3 scenes of all time.  I also love how they picked off each villain before it was just Blackgaard left.  The highlight of the DBD saga, and the 2nd best episode of the album.

#4: The Forgotten Deed: This'll come as a shocker as well, but I think it's a fantastic summary of everything Odyssey is, and, if the show were to ever end, it would be an even more fantastic ending episode.  The last scene still gives me goosebumps.  Overall, this deserves the #4 spot, and it's a rare work of art among the modern episodes (though I did say Album 50 was the greatest of all time).

#3: The Mortal Coil: Conceivably the most beautiful and complex episode in the entire AIO canon, this is a true tour de force of a drama, and a definite candidate for #1.  Walker Edminston's performance throughout the entire episode is amazing, and the subplot with Eugene is chilling yet beautiful.  Definitely #3 material.

#2: The Time Has Come: Another self-explanatory Top 10, though many of you are probably surprised it is not #1, and, if you didn't already see it, wondering what the heck #1 could be.  There isn't much to be said about "The Time Has Come" that hasn't been said already: it's the most powerful episode of all time.  But not the most inspirational.  That honor will be reserved for #1...

#1: Malachi’s Message: Every time I listen to this episode, I'm inspired to do something.  It will always set off a trigger that springs me to action. There's a transcendence about it: an angel visiting Odyssey.  It's the one of the only times when something supernatural occurs in the town, and it's written expertly by Paul McCusker.  The actor who plays Malachi (I forget his name, but I'm aware he's on Radio Theatre) is easily the greatest one-time actor the show has ever had.  The scenes with all the major characters in one room are not meant to be dramatic and powerful, but just hearing Whit, Connie, Eugene, Tom, Jack, Joanne, and Jason all in the same room is among the most powerful things AIO has ever done.  This is a beautifully mysterious, and mysteriously beautiful episode, and it is arguably the only genuine work of art AIO has ever produced.  This isn't to say it's the only great episode they've ever produced, but it's the only one that has crossed the line between entertaining life lessons and true art.

     Well, that's it.  If you read this post, please comment, because I really feel it's the biggest post I've ever made on this blog, and I'd like to hear all my readers' (if I even have any anymore) thoughts on this list.  I'm willing to edit it if you convince me I should, and I'd love to just get a second opinion.
     Thanks for reading!

5 comments:

  1. I did read it! :) And I agree with you on most of it.

    Yay! Another Malachi's Message fan! That's probably the first AIO episode I heard that stuck in my mind. I believe I first heard it when I was about nine, and since then I've probably listened to it twenty times, easily. It's so well done, and like you also said, it inspires me to do something! =)

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  2. Brilliant! Sorry I couldn't comment earlier, computer trouble. This was a great read, one of the most unforgettable AIO posts I've ever read by anyone. (If I'm not mistaken, you're the first aio fan ever to do this. Not surprising, I can't imagine all the work this took.) and I've been devouring your new reviews as well. Thanks!

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  3. I probably would have put a few episodes like Eugene's memory trilogy and maybe Plan B: resistance higher, but I pretty much agree with the rest.

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  4. Thank you so much for the list! I was just looking for an episode to listen to and I stumbled across this jewel! Now I have to get listening... Thanks again!

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  5. Four-years on since you posted this list., I wonder if you could help me. What would be a short list of AIO episodes to play for my young son (5) that he would have the best chance of understanding?

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