a quick update: tags, spoilers, and content warnings

I’m trying to be pretty conscientious about tagging stuff, I want it to be a viable way of finding stuff you might be into. Having said that, I’m going to avoid using tags that could be considered spoilers. Premises and appropriately vague themes only. So like, whilst “babysitters” would be in (or will be in, now that I think of it; there’s this episode of SessionsX that’s just ten out of ten, chef’s kiss ruinous), “clown statues” and “the call was coming from inside the house” are out.

Speaking of tags, something I’ve put some serious thought into implementing is content warnings. I think it’s a very reasonable thing to accept that there are certain subjects some people may want to avoid, especially in a medium that can so easily overlap with your day-to-day life. Having said that, I don’t think I can feasibly make it work here. The problem is I’m attempting to catalogue literally hundreds of shows, many with dozens of episodes. There’s a good chance I may never get round to listening to them all. Content warnings anywhere on this site would imply that listings without don’t contain that kind of content. Better to acknowledge that I just can’t vouch for this stuff.

the true crime dilemma

Halfway through adding the bulk of the links, and I’m taking a break at Let’s Not Meet. I’ve been wanting to do literally anything else for a while, and hashing out what I think counts as horror seems like a pretty productive way to procrastinate. So…

I haven’t listened to the podcast (yet!), but I know the sub the stories are taken from… the better posts there are genuinely some of the scariest content on Reddit. Still, I think they’re on the cusp of being something other than horror, on account of being ostensibly real encounters. The focus on near misses and what might have been is what brings me around. A defining quality of horror is that it’s cathartic. Taking power from ambient anxieties, and implications that, however uncomfortable, resonate because they’re universal. From the bleakest Bryan Bertino film to the most nihilistic Thomas Ligotti story, horror necessarily gives relatable forms to fears; a reassuring flip side to whatever awful thing we’re taking in. And bringing it back to LNM, whilst horror deals in truths, the victims are hypothetical. Nobody’s actually getting hurt. It’s an attenuated vaccine: fear without sadness. The distressingly close calls of Let’s Not Meet fit the bill.

This is, of course, a really subjective take. I want to err on the side of not imposing my own tastes on people, so things that straddle genres are in. Like, Lore might do episodes on HH Holmes and the Hinterkaifeck murders, but it’s not every episode that you have to reckon with actual tragedy, so it’s listed. If, like me, you’re kinda uncomfortable with this sort of stuff, keep an eye on the tags. “true crime” and “non-fiction” are a couple I’ll be especially diligent with.

getting started

The day before yesterday, I saw this post on Reddit cataloguing more horror podcasts than I ever would have guessed existed. The person posting (one of a few contributors apparently) mentioned that the list would be updated from time to time, and would eventually include descriptions as well as titles. Basically, I’ve stolen their idea and ran with it.

Speaking of eventualities, along with links and descriptions of podcasts and old-time radio plays, I’d like to incorporate a kind of IMDB-lite of creators and narrators. Mostly so I can keep tabs on Soren Narnia more thoroughly. I like the idea collating maybe-of-interest stuff from other media too (movies like Pontypool, series like The Kirlian Frequency), but the scope of this thing is already wildly beyond my attention span, so we’ll see.

Oh, for about twelve hours this site was called “nightly company”, which I only mention because check out this video I found when looking to see if that name was already a thing