671: Fast As I Can

Archived reviews of Adventures in Odyssey episodes!

What did you think of "Fast As I Can"?

5 stars - FAST-ASTIC!
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4 stars - WIN
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3 stars - FAIL/WIN?
3
9%
2 stars - FAIL
1
3%
1 star - EPIC FAIL
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Total votes : 34

671: Fast As I Can

Postby American Eagle » Fri Oct 29, 2010 11:21 pm



I have never done this before. Huzzah! \:D/
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Laura Ingalls » Sat Oct 30, 2010 9:09 am

I LOVED this episode! \:D/ Very well done - I enjoyed everyone's different struggles with their own fasts. Good message as well - you don't really hear much on fasting/self-denial these days. :)
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Jimmy Barclay Fan » Sat Oct 30, 2010 11:48 am

It was good. I enjoyed it a lot. It was good to see everyone dealing with this.

I liked Matthew's thing cause I am bringing back letter writing and know there is all social networks, email, texts and phone calls, and am bringing it back
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Catspaw » Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:02 pm

I really enjoyed this episode! I listened to it a week or so ago, so I should re-listen to say more specific stuff, but this was a great episode on an underdone topic. I loved it when Connie said that they fasted at her church about important stuff sometimes, because my church does that too! In the last month we've had a couple of church fasting days about important things and in the past few years my church has talked about fasting and different types of fasts, so I loved hearing an AIO episode that shares this info. I don't know if it's a good or bad thing that I now call the "no sweets" fast the Wooton fast. ;)

Jimmy, it sounds like you're ahead of us on the letter writing thing! There is something nice about a real letter. :yes:

Overall, a great episode with a great message! This is one I plan to listen to again soon...maybe on the next church fast day! ;)
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby American Eagle » Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:20 pm

This is my favorite episode of Album 52. The story, the characters, the moral, the humor - it was all fantastic. This episode reminds me of classic episodes like Do or Diet, but I like Fast As I Can better! The way Wooton is used (especially with the scenes with Mrs. Randolf) is exactly the way he should be used.

Oh, and every single line in the Imagination Station is hilarious. That's easily one of my favorite scenes of all time. \:D/

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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Taq » Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:41 pm

High points
  • Clever title
  • Happy AIO covered the topic of fasting
  • Wooton—He cut out something realistic, e.g. junk food, and he prayed more. I liked the phone book touch. Most of us could benefit from this. (Wow, I am surprised that I am once again listing Wooton as one of the strengths.)
  • Connie—I laughed when the guys didn’t realize she was unprimped, and I loved her realization that drawing attention to herself defeated the purpose. Though this isn’t an issue with which I normally struggle, it’s relevant for a lot of girls (and guys) out there.
  • Matthew—Although his storyline wasn’t developed much, fasting time from computers or electronics is a relevant example that applies to most of us if not all. Hey, we’re all on a forum here…

Low points
  • Eugene—Not a fan of his fast of words more than 2 syllables: (1) Using big words isn’t showing off for Eugene. That’s just the way he is. (2) It’s all about context. Using scientific vocabulary at a scientific meeting isn’t being prideful; it’s simply speaking at a level that the audience can understand. (3) # of syllables is not indicative of level of vocabulary sophistication. For example, the word transportation is 4 syllables, but most people know what it means. On the other hand, the fast did make for some humor, created a tender moment when Eugene realized Whit helped him during the intro to the scientific conference, and opened up a good conversation about the scientific community and lay language.
  • Whit—Don’t think Whit’s fast was bad per se. Overall, it’s great that he spent more time in spiritual disciplines (aka spiritual privileges—worshiping, reading, praying, fasting, memorizing, etc.—we do them because we CAN, because we see the VALUE, because God ENABLED us to, because we WANT to). However, it’s all too common today to ignore the news, which isn’t a positive. (I hope to not ignore current events.)
To sum up, while Fast As I Can was at best an okay episode for me, I’m happy that the art of fasting was brought to our attention. In the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7), Jesus said, “When you fast,” not “if.” Fasting is expected and is relevant for all.
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby The Kings Daughter » Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:11 pm

My thoughts on the episode:

Fasting:

I think it was good to have an episode covering fasting, because many kids don't understand what it is. It was also good how the episode stressed how you need to pray about fasting and maybe even consult close family members, because we don't want kids just fasting for the sake of fasting if you get my meaning.

Whit:

I think Whit played an important role in the episode, and I think he played it well. He was just...Whit! Giving advice, teaching Matthew and the others in a gentle loving way, etc.

Eugene:

I dislike a Eugene without long words! :x Good thing it was only for one episode huh? ;) Overall I would say he did a pretty good job, he stuttered a lot like only Will Ryan can. ;)

Connie:

She was awesome! She was just like herself in that episode. That's all I can say. ;)

Wooton:

I think that Wooton play a very good roll in today's episode. His demonstrating to listeners that when you face temptation, what a great thing to pray! He showed how although it was hard, with God's help he resisted the temptation of junk food.

Matthew:

In this episode, I think Matthew really seemed like on of the good old characters of the older Odyssey. He didn't understand something, he asked, it started a little adventure of searching and finding the answer with the help of Whit, Connie, and Eugene. (and Wooton. ;) )

Overall episode review:

It taught an important lesson, it seemed simple enough for young kids to understand, it was well explained, it reminded me of the good old AIO days. ;)

I'm rating it 5 of 5, it's the best episode of this album yet! \:D/
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Aaron Wiley » Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:21 pm

This is definitely in my top 10 favorite episodes now. I loved this one!

I'm pretty sure I laughed harder at this episodes than any other Odyssey episode so far. but then again I drank a lot of mountain dew today so :P
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Samitude » Sat Oct 30, 2010 4:52 pm

I loved this episode! It felt like an Odyssey episode should. There was a useful lesson for all ages and Mr. Whitaker was being himself by giving good advice. I loved the way he went before Eugene when Eugene had to make his speech. Actually, it reminds me of God. He (God) doesn't take away the difficulties (Mr. Whitaker didn't find some way for Eugene to get out of making his speech). He helps us through them by going along side and before us by making a way. Okay. I'm getting off of the fasting topic of the episode! Back to the subject. Anyway, the topic was great and they gave good explanations for the reasons for fasting, as well as, things to do during the fast. I also enjoyed the humorous lines that were given to several of the characters too.

What other kinds of things could we give up besides these examples? Hmm....texting/cellular phones anyone? The Christian school my sister teaches at has started collecting everyone's cellular phones at the beginning of the school day, putting them in the office, and returned at the end. If I had to give something up it would probably be internet, reading novels, or food.
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby DanP740 » Sat Oct 30, 2010 6:13 pm

I liked this episode... even Whit wasn't too bad. If it weren't for Whit's voice, I would've thought this episode was from back right after Novacom. The Imagination Station scene was really funny, because you never think about how since it's using your imagination you should be able to change stuff in the story...
I actually got up late and only heard the last scene, and when I heard Whit say he didn't miss the news, I was suddenly thinking "he'd better not be talking about the TV news. He doesn't watch TV..." but then I listened to it later and was corrected. :D

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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby LizzieG » Sat Oct 30, 2010 6:57 pm

I wasn't planning on writing any episode reviews right away, but I had so many thoughts about this episode -- and wrote them down because my spreadsheet was handy -- that it made sense to share them here too.

~*~

I just finished a week-long break from Facebook, the ToO, and other "entertainment Internet sites," so Matthew's fast definitely hit home for me. This comes on the heels of my having to have a locksmith break into my car a few days before listening to "Wooton's Broken Pencil Show" (though my locksmith did not use a brick ;) ).

Goof Alert!: Did anybody catch the three-syllable word Eugene used? He substituted "ideas" for "principles," when both words actually have three syllables.

Missed Opportunities:
  • Toward the beginning of the episode, I was really hoping that Katrina would come up in the course of a conversation with Eugene, because, you know, "Katrina" is three syllables long! That would've been really fun to incorporate.
  • I also think it would've been nice to reference "Do, for a Change," when Eugene fasted shortly after becoming a Christian.
The Imagination Station Scene: I didn't find the Thomas Jefferson Imagination Station scene to be that funny. Doesn't it kinda ruin the Imagination Station when you can "bring in" any number of anachronistic things, and the "characters" start talking about the Imagination Station?

My main problem with this episode: Whit and Chris (at the end) painted a good picture of the purpose of fasting ("deny[ing] the body something it enjoys in order to concentrate on something spiritual, like our relationship with God," "giving up something that's important to you during a period of prayer and Bible study," a great way to grow closer to God and focus on Him alone, etc.), but, in my opinion, that picture wasn't portrayed very well throughout the episode. It kinda stopped at the "giving up something" part. But what about the "growing closer to God through a period of prayer and Bible study"?

Only Whit and Wooton clearly connected their fasting experiences with God (and Wooton, at first only as an afterthought, if you listen to the album version). I was disappointed that, when Matthew was trying to get away from computers and came to Whit for advice on what to do, Whit said nothing about spending time with God. How can it be fasting if God doesn't enter into the equation (let alone isn't a major part of the fast)? Connie talked about trying to curb vanity, and Eugene, his pride in his intellect, which are both worthy goals, but it seemed more about "fixing something about yourself on your own" rather than a way to draw closer to God through the experience of giving something up for a period of time. I guess the words "comedic antics" in the episode summary should have been a giveaway that it was more about humor than actually about fasting.

"Solitary Refinement" was a good episode about a spiritual discipline. This one ... not so much.

SUMMARY: There were some funny parts, yes, and I did enjoy the listening experience, but I was just so disappointed that the spiritual theme was sugarcoated so much. I don't know, maybe I'm not being fair to this episode. Maybe I'm just more sensitive than I used to be to the presence of strong Christian messages. Maybe slice-of-life episodes have always been this light and it was never a big deal to me before. But ... I don't think so. This episode brought to mind "Do, for a Change," because it's the only other episode (that I know of) that mentions fasting. "Do, for a Change," however, is one of my favorite slice-of-life episodes. In that episode, the spiritual content is strong, the humor is fitting and not overblown, and the characters' dilemmas felt very real.

It was nice to have an episode totally devoted to fasting, but it felt disconnected from what fasting really is. Apart from Chris' and Whit's statements, it seemed little more than an exercise in self-discipline that may or may not include God. It just felt like sort of a game that trivialized fasting, which made it hard for me to enjoy the episode.

I'd also like to second what Taq said, particularly about Eugene's fast, and add that "fasting from two-syllable words" seems more like a distraction from one's relationship with God than something that would be helpful (for example, being so fixated on saying the right words while praying).
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Taq » Sat Oct 30, 2010 9:57 pm

Lizzie, thank you for sharing from your heart, especially in the "main problem" section. It is all too easy to fall into that trap, making short term self-discipline goals and then only marginally connecting them to God or not connecting them to God at all. That is not fasting. On the contrary, fasting STARTS, ELAPSES, and ENDS with God.

But does that mean we should abandon these amoral self-discipline goals if we have failed involve God with them in the past? By no means! We should continue them PLUS intentionally follow the prayer and Word prescription INCLUDING prayer that God would purify our motives.

Psalm 51 wrote: 10 Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

11 Do not cast me from your presence
or take your Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation
and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

Funny, I never saw this passage in the fasting light before, just in terms of repentance from sin. The original context is, after all, David repenting from adultery with Bathsheba after being confronted by Nathan, but the part in verse 12 about asking God for a willing spirit to sustain me seems fitting.

Matthew 6 wrote:16"When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men they are fasting. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 17But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Verse 16 sounds like Connie, no?
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Catspaw » Sat Oct 30, 2010 10:33 pm

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Lizzie. I think I had noticed some of that when I first listened but then later just remembered the stuff that I liked. :anxious: I really did like this episode, but I agree that it could have been even more powerful. I'm sure it's hard to find the right balance in episodes like this. Maybe in a future episode we'll get to hear a more serious side - that the characters have grown in this area and are going deeper.
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Sapphire » Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:10 am

I loved this episode. It had a great lesson on fasting. I loved Wooton in this episode. He actually thought of a great idea. Going through the phone book and praying for people is a great idea. It was strange to hear Eugene saying short words all of the time. Matthew and Connie were great in this episode too, but I think only Wooton and Whit were the only ones who actually got something out of their fast. Eugene panicked the whole week, Matthew was trying to avoid computers, and Connie didn't seem to merit anything either. In the end, Eugene, Matthew, and Connie did learn something, but that was after their fast. This episode had some good laughs too. The only problem I have with it is it wasn't as spiritual as some. I would have though if this was about fasting it would be more spiritual. I will give this episode five lovely stars out of five.
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Marvin D. » Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:00 pm

Ooh, I see some cool episode reviews here. \:D/ And I feel so much like I'm gonna be a wet blanket, I don't even want to review it. :(

I was looking forward to this episode ever since AE posted about it saying how he liked it. And so I heard it...and was disappointed.

The Imagination Station scene was very....lame. The actor for Thomas Jefferson was just not right, and I never remember the Imagination Station being programmed by you. Theoretically, that's right. But the AIO team just like, threw it in now. We've never heard of it before, have we?

Connie's 'fast' wasn't major at all. No makeup? Bleh. Lots of people don't wear makeup. While it was fairly realistic how she tried to get the guys to realize what was different with her, I don't think that was the best fast ever. I couldn't even figure a point out of her fast.

Eugene's fast was probably the lamest of all fasts. Oh look, in my previous sentence I used a three syllable word! Oh look, there's another! And one more! There is no way that using words with 3 syllables means you're all rubbing it into someone's face. Get real, people. That made Eugene's fast utterly lame. He wasn't concentrating on God in any way, just busy worryi--being concerned about not passing the three syllab--units of speech mark.

Matthew's fast was pretty good, considering that's something I could work on. However, once he finally got away from it....nothing about God. (see below)

In all of the fasts (excluding Whit's to some extent), we never saw much being centered on God. Wooton dug through the phone books and spoke to people, Connie just didn't wear makeup, Eugene panicked about not using "big" words, and Matthew only wrote letters. There's nothing wrong with these, but we really didn't see anything about spending time with God. That's what really needed to be in this episode.

So this episode gets a rating of 4/10.
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby ric » Sun Oct 31, 2010 3:06 pm

Pros: Good topic. Moderately humorous. I enjoyed the Imagination Station adventure and Eugene's speech. I also love the new character....Gertrude! People are saying that there wasn't enough focus on God. But in the end, Connie realized that she was to vain, and Matthew started writing people, which was a kind thing to do. Doesn't it honor God to do those things? I haven't read everyone's reviews, so....

Cons: Just because Eugene utilizes his big vocabulary doesn't make him a show-off. There weren't that many other specific things, this just wasn't the greatest, per se.

Rating: 7.5/10
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby American Eagle » Sun Oct 31, 2010 3:18 pm

To everyone who's complaining about the lack of a focus on God in the episode, have a listen to "Wooton's Broken Pencil Show". ;)
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Anna><> » Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:18 pm

American Eagle wrote:To everyone who's complaining about the lack of a focus on God in the episode, have a listen to "Wooton's Broken Pencil Show". ;)

QFT.

I actually enjoyed this episode.
Wooton's fast was actually my favourite. I love the way he reached out to others while fasting.
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Steve » Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:36 pm

That was really really good! \:D/

In fact, I was suprised at how good it was after the somewhat dissapointing Stage Fright. :shock: Eugene's end of the story was hilarious. :lol: I laughed many many times during it. Matthew's was funny too. Especially the scene in the Imangination Station. ("Do you like the smiley emoticon at the end?" O:) ) Of course, Wooten's was hysterical, though not as good as Eugene's. I will admit that I laughed more when listening to Eugene falter in his speech in the Q and A session.

The only part of the episode that needed work was Connie's. It wasn't touched on enough. It kind of died after she started. Fortunately, Matthew and Wooten fixed that a little with some comments. ("Connie does look really bad today, doesn't she?" :lol: )

On a side note. Did anyone else notice that in the credits, Marshal Younger co-wrote with Paul McCusker? I thought that I heard in the Whit's End Podcast's interwiew with Nathan Hoobler that Marshal had been let go from Odyssey. Was I mistaken? Was he just moved to a new department at Focus? Is he free-lanceing with them? I don't know. But I thought that was interesting.

All in all Fast as I Can was a very good episode. It was funny, it was realistic (kind of) and kept me entertained. 9 out of 10 stars!!!! :o :D
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Re: 671: Fast As I Can

Postby Bennett » Sun Oct 31, 2010 10:56 pm

By the looks of it, a lot of us thought similar things about "the theme" of this episode. Too bad I was beaten to the punch. But here is my review nonetheless:

http://aio-thechangingtimes.blogspot.co ... i-can.html
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