By Howler Magazine
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||ExplicitValentine’s Day Special||A terror threat leads to a marriage proposal at the 1994 World Cup. It's our most romantic show t...||2/14/14||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitHigh Goalie Daze||A cautionary tale about what happens when you are seriously drugged out and yet forced to play go...||1/9/14||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitThe Half-Time Hero||One day in 1994, Steve Davies lived the dream of every soccer fan. He was plucked from the crowd ...||11/6/13||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitHowler Radio Shorts: West Ham Fan and Frankie Blades Figo||We're working on two longer episodes of Howler Radio, so in this short we're playing you two clip...||10/31/13||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitThe Scottish Fitba Opera||PARENTAL ADVISORY: EXPLICIT LANGUAGE. In this episode of Howler Radio, Alan Black brings us an au...||10/10/13||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitThe Pressure Breaks||Howler contributing editor Robert Andrew Powell recalls a disturbing episode he touches on in his...||8/12/13||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitThe Ballad of Quique the Butcher||Grant Wahl recalls his first international trip, a research project that took him to Buenos Aires...||7/29/13||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitS***e Fitba||In this episode of Howler Radio, Alan Black of the San Francisco Chronicle delivers an epic poem ...||6/5/13||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitObsessed||In this episode of Howler Radio, stories about people who schedule their lives around soccer game...||2/12/13||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitYou Suck, A*****e!||If you've been to a Major League Soccer game, you've probably heard this chant—we'll call it YSA ...||12/18/12||Free||View In iTunes|
||ExplicitAn American at Azteca||If you've ever wondered what it's like to take in a US-Mexico game at Estadio Azteca, this episod...||11/25/12||Free||View In iTunes|
This American Life Soccer?
You can't deny the fact that "This American Life" is a fantastic, well-produced radio program. Because of that, it's bound to happen that other radio/podcasts would copy the format and reporting style. Howler Radio feels too much like a soccer spin-off of that program. Its host tries a little too hard to sound and feel like he's hosting an NPR program, especially in regards to the way the episode is edited.
It's nice that someone is trying to put a more refined spin on the sport of soccer in the United State but it just doesn't feel like copying a well-known formula is the way to go. On top of that, the second episode dealing with a pretty tame chant doesn't really feel like a lot of effort was involved. Clearly, they knew they didn't have enough to warrant an actual written article so instead decided to throw 23 minutes at our ears.
Again, it's nice to have the approach of trying to be "educational" and "informative" but in both of the programs first episodes, neither occur. Also, considering that the episodes are geared towards Americans, anyone from any part of the world, including other North American countries will not find much to enjoy.
Hopefully improvements can be made to make this both original in its reporting and style and offer content that people from around the world would enjoy. Especially since this is the World's game.