Piece Comment

Review of Haunted Cabin

This is a simple and delightful tale. It’s the story of a night in a “haunted cabin” with people who know all things haunted, and it works on several levels.

On one level, it will interest listeners because it reveals the tools and lore of ghost hunting, something most listeners probably won’t know much about. On another level, it is enjoyable because of the quirky characters it brings together. In particular, I like the way the “psychic” is sort of separate from everyone else. Though everyone is interested in the hunt and brings his own skills to the table, she seems to be out front. The other characters seem to teeter between a self-serving “distrust” or “skepticism” of her and an admiration or awe at the gifts they perceive she has. On a final level, the story is interesting because it reveals how often the little quirky hobbies that enter our lives are about a search for meaning. We seek to satisfy some longing or void by filling it with a pursuit that appears to have promise.

On a technical level, the piece is very sound. It is of sufficient audio quality to be heard on mainstream programming as is. The transitions were smooth. The sound quality was clear, and the music selection was complementary to the mood of the piece. Good work.

This could be interesting listening on any weekend, but particularly great as part of a series on ghosts, psychics, or the afterlife. Whatever one’s belief about such issues, I think the piece will be enjoyable because the narrator admits an openness that will make believers comfortable but an uncertainty that keeps him well on the rational and practical side of thought. This, of course, will make skeptics comfortable.

I have only one criticism. The dimension of the piece that addresses how the hunt relates to the narrator’s own personal hunt for meaning and belief in the afterlife could be richer. Unfortunately, such things cannot be forced, and maybe the producer just didn’t have the tape he needed to bring this out. If such tape does exist, I’d encourage him to beef up the “intensity” of this dimension.