Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Further thoughts on Word of Promise Next Generation

Today, I finished listening to the Word of Promise Next Generation Audio New Testament. I started the project on December 5, 2008 and completed it on December 30, 2008. My initial review is here.

What I liked best: I loved Hebrews--the narration was superb. (The narrator was Sean Astin.) Matthew was also a favorite because the non-Jesus parts were narrated by Astin.

What I liked least: The book introductions by Jenna Lucado. There was something about her voice that was grating--like nails on a chalkboard.

What mostly worked: I was pleased with most of the actors. I was disappointed with Paul some of the time. I realize that it is difficult to read Paul's writings without stuttering and stumbling and sounding like you don't know when to pause, trying to find a way to make it sound natural, etc. I do the same thing each and every time I read one of Paul's letters aloud to my Sunday School class. But I'm not a professional reader and never claimed to be. So I expected better. I think he probably did the very best he could do under the circumstances. But some passages--some books--were more awkward than others. I was surprisingly pleased with most of Cody's work as Jesus. He didn't get it right all the time. But most of the time--at least 75% of the time, he got the job done.

The more familiar I was with a book--Romans, Ephesians, John--the less pleased I was with the audio. I am relatively sure this is because of the translation. I'm just not a fan of the International Children's Bible (New Century Version). Also because these three books are so beloved, so familiar, there were higher expectations going into it.

What didn't work:

Some of the 'dramatic' sound effects didn't work for me. Chiefly any and every time when the powers-that-be decided that megaphones (or something made to sound like that) were the way to go. Usually these represented other-worldly-beings either angelic or demonic. Why they decided that angels (and/or demons) would talk louder (and echo, echo, echo) when communicating with humans is beyond me. This is especially evident in the book of Revelation.

Also, while I realize that this is an audio book meant for children...I found some of the voices to sound too young for their parts. Not all of them. Not even most of them. Just two or three sounded like they were ten or twelve when they were 'playing' characters meant to be in their thirties or older. It was just distracting.

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