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Season 1: Summer 1994

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1July 2, 1994MP3 (12.5 MB)
In the Vault
Buying Brains
Political Panel
Notes: The first episode of The Great Eastern, sprung full-grown in 1994 with (mostly) the cast of characters we’ve come to love. Ish Lundrigan (In The Vault) gives us the lowdown on the BCN’s slaughterhouse history and introduces us to Captain Lloyd Duncan — Dildo Man. Kathleen Hanrahan weighs in with the controversial Cabot logs (“The crew believe we are in the very Kingdom of the Antichrist. I am stricken with a fear that my sad discovery shall be a black legacy hanging from my name.”) Billy Murphy and Ger Caddigan are there in the Skin Cabin Pond audio diary (remember them from the Moose Hunting episode?) Of course there’s the first political panel with Ariel, J. Richard, and Carl. There’s also Paul’s first show-ending “Paulitorial’, a wistful piece on the “Zen of Staying in Newfoundland”. Of note is the interview with Eckhart Wunderich: Olfactory Artist, part of the “New Forms Festival”. You've heard parts of this show in repackaged repeats; this is the whole thing.
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2July 9, 1994MP3 (12.5 MB)
Paul Moth’s St. John's
Notes: A very rich episode. Paul’s walk to work piece at the beginning is worth a close listen. Note the “Hungry Man Cappacino” at Giovanni Neary’s Cafe Cartegena: “A regular cappucino we stick in a blender with two fried eggs and some bacon....” Paul’s interest in...um...shoes is quietly dropped in this piece: “The latest issue of Spike is in Paul....” The Vault is a classic: Carl Pilgrim calling the 1951 Regatta, the “carnage at the buoys”, where the BCN team “rowed to victory as the rest of the field drowned in agony.” Ed Riche is Carl Pilgrim (and Morris Jesso, by the way....) Morris makes his first appearance in this episode too, and for trivia buffs it’s without the Bridge Over Troubled Waters theme. Other notables: on Wordworks, a review of Delbert Onglow’s Hardy Boys update: The Bayport Closet Case; and another outburst from J. Richard Candow on the Political Panel: “Pay for pissing or piss off! Baywops out!” Tech guru Blaine Hart (Steve Palmer) makes his first appearance talking about Home Workfare and the dramatized “Paul Moth Story” is promoted. Whew. A lot of firsts in this one...
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3July 16, 1994MP3 (12.5 MB)
Notes: This episode is centered around the Royal St. John’s Regatta, North America’s oldest continuous sporting event. Paul comes back to it throughout the show and the piece with Kathleen Hanrahan is taped at the Regatta concession she is manning. (Good lines in this one: the prizes are Canadian books, like Conrad Black’s Jah Love, written after he converted to Rastafarianism). In The Vault features A King’s Ransom, the crooked 1930’s game show with Caspar Cumby. Morris Jesso fans (and they are legion) get a treat with a full interview with the host of Interred. [Regatta trivia: the beefy CBC team wins the race in seven minutes on this show. The best times ever on the pond are really just under nine, and for 80 years the record was 9:13.]
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4July 23, 1994MP3 (12.5 MB)
Notes: Romance plays a big part of episode four, starting with newspaper romance columnist Nadine Halley, who analyzes responses to Paul's personal ad. “Discipline your cup of tea?”, she asks. “No,” says Paul, “I get enough humiliation in the workplace.” Paul eventually goes for Rhonda, who is ... tall, but apparently likes shoes. An excellent Vault, with Andy Jones as early Great Eastern host Ron Gellately. Ron’s loyalties during the war and mysterious disappearance are dealt with matter-of-factly by Ish Lundrigan (the late Mike Wade). Wordworks in on coffee-table books and more Paul tidbits are thrown in: his association with Paul Reubens (Pee Wee Herman), and, once again, shoes. PM on The Big Book of Shoes: “$135 is a steal for a book like this Kathleen....” The Wearing the Wire promo bears a couple of listenings; Off the Committee: Liberals in Crisis contains lines like “At least give me a note or something saying I can appropriate your voice.” Watch for the “Angry Goat” in the Blaine Hart virtual sex piece, the secret government in the Political Panel and, to top it off, the first Fashion Report from stalwart Lawrence Royce-Hiscock. Come to think of it, there’s a lot of Steve Palmer in this episode: Wearing the Wire, Blaine Hart and Royce-Hiscock are all Palmer creations....
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5July 30, 1994MP3 (12.5 MB)
Notes: The renowned Newfoundland pianist, professional wrestler and “difficult” man Hugh Kuva looms large in this episode. His death is the subject of the opening piece: excerpts from a documentary on his life, in the style of the reverential, high art pieces on Radio 2 (then CBC Stereo). Best line: question to pro wrestler Scientist – “Are you really a scientist?”. Morris Jesso’s Interred promo also features Kuva. Wordworks discusses the Writing Through Region conference, a hilarious send-up of literary pretention: workshops included Freeing the Bay Voice, Post-bay Archetypes, and Deconstructing the Jig and the Politics of Desire. And you must listen to the Grade 10 student documentary on the BCN recorded on Ish Lundrigan’s hidden microphones around the building. The title is “BCN: Radio’s Missing Link” – which might be familiar to fans because is was the title of Bob Pellatier's award winning documentary from the 98-99 season. Also: The Political Panel and The Vault in the last episode of the first season....
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6December 31, 1994MP3 (12.5 MB)
Notes: The long-lost New Year’s Eve 1994 episode – never rebroadcast or repackaged. A hilarious episode, chock full of proto-Greateasternisms (?) destined to show up slightly different in later seasons. Check out The Vault, where Ish discusses Little Davy Penton’s Christmas in the Mines, with Seagoing Santa, which became a Christmas special in a later season. Check out the first mention of Carlos, Duke of Portugal. Then there’s the first appearance of Erling Biggs, Bernard Ayres and Rita Molloy (actually, it’s Eleanor Power, but you'll recognize the voice, played by local broadcaster Jacinta Wall. And finally, the first discussion of Paul’s Mexico days, and his book (which we’ve never heard of since) Pepita Y Yo (Pepito and Me).