Episode 005

The Brooklyn Brain









Owen Kelly



July 29, 2022


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On months that have a fifth Friday we break from our normal schedule and produce something else related in one way or another to cultural democracy. In 2022 we delve into radio archives to bring back some historical examples of serials and comedies that let us hear unfiltered aspects of the world as it seemed to our grandparents.

In this episode we go back to June 21, 1950 to listen to episode 15 of the science fiction series Two Thousand Plus. The series aired over the Mutual network from the spring of 1950 until very early in 1952. Nearly 100 30-minute episodes were produced although fewer than 20 survive as recordings.

These stories reflect the times in which they were written, and they provide a glimpse of the way mainstream media in the middle of the twentieth century viewed what they regarded as the future, and we regard as the present. Their version of the future reflects all the assumptions, biases, and prejudices of conventional nineteen fifties thinking. As such it offers us a way of understanding how we got here, and the baggage we brought with us.