What is it
Finn Caspian is a free, weekly podcast about the adventures of a boy and his friends in outer space. They work with (and against) robots and aliens on board spaceships and strange other worlds.
The podcasts are usually 20-25 minutes long, with about 15 minutes of storytelling and the rest devoted to going through reader mail, much of which are space-related jokes.
There are a few seasons of the show online now, each with 15-20 episodes.
Who is it for
The show seems aimed at ages 5 to 10 but there is enough going on that kids a bit younger or a bit older could enjoy it as well.
What Kids Like
The kids like the adventure stories, which are humorous and suspenseful, most ending on a cliff-hanger that is resolved the next week.
The narrator, Jonathan Messinger has a virtual sidekick/cohost in the form of a robot, BeeBop, who is snarky and a bit rude (in a kid-friendly way) and the kids love that character.
What Parents Like
We like that our kids can listen to a story without zoning out in front of a screen. It hearkens back to the days of radio dramas when kids had to make up the pictures in their imaginations, in an active rather than passive way.
The stories are clever and one of the themes of the series is that it is stuffed full of references to existing children’s books, so we can play ‘spot the reference’ along with the kids.
It’s been essential listening on long car rides and I’ve been reading to them less frequently at bedtime, instead playing two episodes of Finn Caspian.
And it’s free! With no ads!
What the Critics Think
I haven’t seen any critics’ reviews of the show, but it gets ~4.5 stars on all of the streaming services that carry it.
Jonathan Messinger is a good writer but not a polished voice actor and some of the delivery sounds amateurish. His elocution has improved over the course of the series, however.
The voice of the character of BeeBop is created with a ‘roboticize’ voice filter that can get annoying after a while.
Who Made it
Finn Caspian is written and performed by Jonathan Messinger, author of Hiding Out, former web editor of Time Out Chicago Kids.
The show began in the summer of 2016 and Jonathan has been putting out a new show just about every week since then.
Where Can I Get it
From the source:
From the publisher: