The desert seems vast, even endless, and yet scientists tell us that somewhere, even now, there is snow.
Welcome to Night Vale.
The Night Vale Tourism Board’s “Visit-able Night Vale” campaign has kicked off with posters encouraging folks to take their family on a scenery-filled jaunt through the trails of Radon Canyon.
Their slogan? “The view is literally breathtaking.”
Posters will be placed at police stations and frozen yogurt shops in nearby towns, along with promotional giveaways of plastic sheeting and re-breathers.
And now, the news.
Have any of our listeners seen the glowing cloud that has been moving in from the west? Well, John Peters – you know, the farmer? He saw it over the western ridge this morning. Said he would have thought it was the setting sun if it wasn’t for the time of day.
Apparently the cloud glows in a variety of colors, perhaps changing from observer to observer, although all report a low whistling when it draws near.
One death has already been attributed to the Glow Cloud. But listen, it’s probably nothing. If we had to shut down the town for every mysterious event that at least one death could be attributed to, we’d never have time to do anything, right?
That’s what the Sheriff’s Secret Police are saying, and I agree. Although, I would not go so far as to endorse their suggestion to run directly at the cloud, shrieking and waving your arms, just to see what it does.
The Apache Tracker, and I remind you that this is that white guy who wears the huge and cartoonishly inaccurate Indian headdress, has announced that he has found some disturbing evidence concerning the recent incident at the Night Vale Post Office, which has been sealed by the City Council since the great screaming that was heard from it a few weeks ago.
He said that using ancient Indian magics, he slipped through council security into the post office, and observed that all the letters and packages had been thrown about as in a whirlwind.
That there was the heavy stench of scorched flesh.
That the words written in blood on the wall said, “More to come, and soon.”
Can you believe this guy said he used Indian magics? What an asshole!
Here’s something odd: there is a cat hovering in the men’s bathroom at the radio station here. He seems perfectly happy and healthy, but it’s floating about four feet off the ground next to the sink. Doesn’t seem to be able to move from its current hover-spot. If you pet him, he purrs, and he’ll rub on your body like a normal cat if you get close enough. Fortunately, because he’s right by the sink, it was pretty easy to leave some water and food where he could get it, and it’s nice to have a station pet.
Wish it wasn’t trapped in a hovering prison in the men’s bathroom, but listen: no pet is perfect. It becomes perfect when you learn to accept it for what it is.
And now a message from our sponsors.
What type of text is it? What is its title? Website address?
This type of text type is a podcast called Welcome to Night Vale. The episode where the extract is from is called "Glow cloud".
Who are the primary and secondary target audiences? (age, gender, ethnicity, interests ect.)
The primary audience are people of any genders who are interested in humorous podcasts which falls under the genre of science fiction and fantasy. The light hearted characteristics of the narrator would appeal to audiences enjoy a unserious broadcast of a surreal and serious situation. Although generally humorous it is puncuated with sincerity and deepness of the character "It becomes perfect when you learn to accept it for what it is.", pulling in audiences who find light hearted deep characters appealing. Simple language suggests an audience of all ages but then mentions of gore suggests an audience who dont mind a little blood.
What is the text’s primary purpose and secondary purposes?
The text's primary purpose is to convey the idea and feel of the weirdness of Night Vale through imagery, the author's reaction towards incidents and situations, which we will normally consider morally bad. Another purpose of the text is to have the feel of a 'normal' broadcast with a twist. The secondary purpose is to introduce and explore the characters and the world of Night Vale through the broadcasts of this imaginary world.
What contextual aspects of the text are important?
This podcast started in 2012 and is ongoing. Created by Joseph Fink and Jeffery Cranor, Night Vale was created with inspiration from Vacation by Deb Olin Unferth and Will Eno, a playwright. Vacations is a novel full of deadpan which also can be seen in the text. Joseph Fink and Jeffery Cranor strives for a more diverse podcast and included the joke about the white man using 'indian magic' in the text infering cultural appropriateness. They aim to make their podcasts diverse seeing that many stories of the same genre are rarly inclusive.
What important language/ linguistic devices contribute to the text’s purpose?
Deadpan humor, bias, informal at some points of the text.
"That there was the heavy stench of scorched flesh.That the words written in blood on the wall said, “More to come, and soon.”Can you believe this guy said he used Indian magics? What an asshole!"
Using informal language the narrator is able to be appealing to the audience, making him more likable and relatable.
Is syntax important?
The text has lots of short paragraphs to convey lots of imformation in a short period of time as expected of broadcasts. Some minor sentences includes "Their slogan?" and "And now, the news". These incomplete sentences creates a shift of topic (for "And now, the news") and also can be a short rethoric question (for "Their slogan?"). But minor sentences are also an important syntax feature of spoken speech.
Is grammar important?
Throughout the text many action verds are used to describe the events occuring in Night Vale to inform the audience as well as let them imagine the event which has taken place. Nominal groups such as "a scenery- filled jaunt" creates an image for the audience to imagine as this is a podcast not accompanied with pictures. The pronouns are important to the referrance of different characters and people mentioned the podcast, especially when having a segment talking about them.
Other striking features?
The other striking feature of this text type is the theme of the supernatural and fantasy. Since this text is set in another world much unlike ours we feel a little uncomfortable especially during the times when their rules and morals are not like ours.