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EP064: Head of State

By Ed W. Marsh.
Read and Produced by Wichita Rutherford (of 5 Minutes With Wichita).

“There’s a reason we don’t use nano to cut the President-Chairman’s hair. You know about the assassination attempt three years ago?”

Everyone did. “I thought he was fully recovered.”

“What’s left of him. Yes. All of that civilian nano would interfere with crucial signals sent and received by the nano in use by the MedTechs. Can’t risk it. That bomb was nasty. What I’m telling you is classified, obviously. We have no intention of presenting Arrington to the world as less than the man he deserves to be.”

Rated PG. Contains implications of violence, heavy politics, and split ends.

Referenced sites:
Worldcon: Anaheim, CA, August 23–27
Bring Sigler’s Ancestor to Sci Fi!
Wil Wheaton
EP036: Connie, Maybe
EP061: I Look Forward To Remembering You
EP055: Down Memory Lane

Comments (58)

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  1. Neal Dench says:

    James — that emphasis on odd words was one of the things I found the most charming.

  2. [...] http mp3 Extrait “There’s a reason we don’t use nano to cut the President-Chairman’s hair. You know about the assassination attempt three years ago?” [...]

  3. Simon says:

    Finally got around to giving this story the attention it deserved..

    The Wichita thing has been done to death in the preceding 52 comments, so i wont go into that, lets talk about The Story!

    I enjoyed this. It reminded me very very, very strongly of an old Frank Miller comic called Martha Washington Goes To War (and the preceding story Give Me Liberty) – Miller has an obsession with puppet presidents kept alive by technology, a theme he first visited in The Dark Knight Returns, but the post-apoc elements of this story absolutely sing Martha Washington both in style and humour.

    To be honest, it’s such a blatant thematic and stylistic rip from Martha that, if the author has read these and knew of the influence when he wrote it, well.. It’s not to his credit. On the other hand, if this was subconscious, then it’s a terrific homage to Miller. If he’s never read Miller (who is, just about, the second most famous comic writer after Alan Moore) then wow, what a meeting of minds.

    At the same time, I would just like to say that this ISN’T SF. No real ideas content, and the world isn’t build to sell us a vision. This is escapism, this is hollywood, this is a DC comic.. This is not SF. Fun.. But not SF.

  4. Pedantry Be We says:

    I agree that a more-produced story is a nice treat – like dessert – but prefer the meat-and-potatoes style of the usual podcasts.

    One small (really, REALLY teeny) quibble: this is the second story in which the word “cache” was mispronounced “cash-A” (rhymes with sashay). It’s “CASH” (like money). “Cachet” is pronounced “cash-A,” but it means a totally different thing.

  5. Abby says:

    Enjoyable story, and the ending manages to be both horrifying and morbidly funny. Honestly, though, the production turned me off. I almost skipped the story, but I was driving and decided to give it ten more seconds … another ten seconds … and I got interested about five or six minutes in.

    I don’t mind full cast audio productions, or sound effects; I just didn’t like the “aw shucks, I’m just a hick” overacting of the narrator. It reminded me of the low-budget motion rides in Las Vegas casinos, the kind with a recorded “host” who tries to engage the kids by acting over-the-top stupid.

  6. Timo Pietila says:

    Story was nice, but I really, really hated the reading. It was too fast, too much shouting, too much horrible overacting.

  7. Kara says:

    This is the first “podcast” I have listened to, and was directed to this particular one for a school assignment. I thought the reading was great. The story was better. I look forward to listening to more of these when I have time.

  8. scatterbrain says:

    Dystopian hair cutting as told by Wichita Rutherford?

    Score!