When I was 7 years old I thought that my future was going to be in Radio. I read, studied, dreamed and consumed a ton about Broadcasting in general. And most of the things I learned were from .. well.. Hippies. Real live Grateful Dead following accross the country Hippies. So my young mind was forever warpped at an early age when they introduced me to things like Jack Flanders and his magical worlds that were entered by Jack sitting in his green bean bag chair and inducing a form of transcendental meditation. I was already hooked on Radio Dramas but these were more Sci Fi and Fantasy slanted. And the guys making them were very much in the experimental side of audio. It was here I learned about technologies that were called Binaural Recordings. And I did all this before I ever knew what recreational drugs were or how they affected those I was learning from at the time. I led a very sheltered life.
Back in the late 70's and early 80's I looked forward to the weekends where I could put on a big bulky set of headphones and be whisked away to these stereophonic delights. True I had a hard time figuring out the symbolism or the jokes or even the plot. But for what I didn't get i found so much more in the way that ZBS recorded and presented their stories. Adventure with a real love of puns laced with dry wit is a statement I can make about how ZBS approach their craft. They also find incredible methods of performing plot gymnastics with characters from long ago whispering one sentence off handedly but then it becomes the entire reason for one episode's plot later on in the series. Therefore dedicated fans can find much more story on repeat play sessions.
Jack's expanded universe and mythos is quite vast. Several of his sidekicks went on to get their own series. And now all of them are available for purchase either on CD, tape or via MP3 downloads. There is even a podcast service where you can try some of the episodes for free. Plus there are newer adventures for sale for long time fans who may have lost touch with Ruby and the others.
If you are interested and you don't mind listening out of order .. i highly recommend "Jack Flanders and the 4th Tower of Inverness". It is regarded by many fans to be one of the best of the ZBS collection.
To learn more about Jack and the other dramatic audios at ZBS hit the link below.