The latest Team Q&A edition of the Official Adventures in Odyssey Podcast has been released! In this latest edition, the AIO Team (in this episode consisting of Marshal Younger, Phil Lollar, Kathy Buchanan, and Nathan Hoobler) answers a lot of the fans’ questions about Album 72: The Long Road Home and other questions. Be sure to give it a listen. I’ll be covering the major information from it in this post and giving a bit of commentary as well.

Eugene Meltsner
The first question asked was what decision has been made regarding Eugene’s future, a question on everyone’s mind. Marshal Younger responded, “It’s tough, because as I’ve said before, there’s no satisfying answer. You’re not going to be satisfied with whatever we come up with because what we want is Will Ryan playing Eugene, and we can’t have that anymore. And so, we’re just trying to do the best thing for the show and the character.” He made it clear that Eugene would not fade away nor be ignored, since he is too important of a character. He said that they came to a decision and that we’ll be seeing the fruits of that decision in Albums 75 and 76.

My Thoughts
Marshal Younger stated almost exactly what he said in response to this question during the live chat with him that happened last month on the Odyssey Chat. I’m glad they included this question in the Official Podcast saying that the character will not vanish into thin air like some Odyssey kids over the years. In my opinion, I think there are only two options of what can be done with Eugene: either he dies in the show or moves away. Replacing Eugene with another actor is unthinkable and I would not be in favor if they did this. But if this is what they have decided, then I’ll adjust. Like with the new actor of David Parker, I got used to it and over time learned to appreciate him. However, as Marshal Younger said, we’ll be seeing their decision in Albums 75 and 76. If my calculations are correct, Album 75 will release in 2023, so we’ve still got a while to go until then.

Buck and Jules
A few questions regarding Buck and Jules were asked. First, a fan asked if Buck’s middle name would be changed, since he is now in the Meltsner family. Kathy Buchanan said that it would be up to him, while Phil Lollar said that maybe he could keep all four names, since some people have four names, including his newest grandchild.
The other question asked was if Buck and Jules will ever get married. The team began discussing this. Kathy Buchanan said that she likes the idea of them being married eventually, but that she enjoys seeing their friendship and that she doesn’t have an end goal in sight for it. Nathan Hoobler said that something to consider would be where the characters are spiritually, since neither of them are Christians, and that would affect how they approach it as a story. Phil Lollar said they would also have to consider if it is a good story, not just to do it. Nathan Hoobler added, “Not just a good single story, but what’s the story after that? …But then what happens after the wedding, because the series continues and they’ll continue as characters after the wedding, so what would happen then?” They ended discussion by joking that Connie would be mad if Jules got married before her. “That would be awesome!” “Just for that we should!”

My Thoughts
While I don’t think Buck’s middle name is a very major issue, it is definitely an interesting topic. Would Buck want to drop the middle names Jebediah or Oliver to be separate from that part of his life? I could understand if he wants to drop Jebediah and keep Oliver. Personally, I think that Buck should keep all four names because that sounds pretty cool.
Regarding Buck and Jules getting married, I also have thoughts. I really don’t think AIO needs to get into topics like teen dating (or marriage as the case may be). This is a kids’ show, and I don’t think it is a necessary nor relevant topic for them to cover. Plus, I myself am strongly not in favor of Buck and Jules together. But that’s another post for another time. But I do agree with the AIO Team that it would be awesome to hear Connie’s reacting to having Jules get married before her. Poor Connie.

Young Whit and Blackgaard Chronicles
One fan asked when the next book in the Young Whit book series is coming out. Phil Lollar responded that the fourth book is complete and that the first draft for the fifth book is complete. He said that all of these will be out in August of 2023. “That’s my bad. We had a lot to do in the last book. There were things that were set up in books 1-4 that we had to take care of, and it just took longer than I expected to get it finished. Dave and I have been going back and forth with that one for a while and it’s going to be great. You’re going to love it.” He also said that all the Blackgaard Chronicles books will be out at the same time as well. He went on to say that book 6 is complete and he’s working on book seven and eight and possibly a ninth book. So, August 2023.

My Thoughts
While I’m glad we finally have a release date for the book series, I am also very disappointed that we have to wait so long. Phil Lollar was recently interviewed on an episode of the Fantastical Truth podcast in which one of the things he talked about was the Young Whit and Blackgaard book series, including the delay in releasing them. As he said, if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing well. And considering that it has been more than two years since a book in either series was released, I am eagerly expecting some excellently written material in these next books they’ve been working on for so long. I have a post in the works about my hopes for the Blackgaard Chronicles book series where I write my thoughts which I hope to release at some point. August 2023 will be here before we know it.

Album 73 Episode Titles Revealed!
Here’s the big news: Details about Album 73: 28 Hours! Kathy Buchanan stated, “The six shows span a course of 28 hours within Odyssey. So, from 7am on Monday to 11am the next day is where all six shows take place.” Then they gave the names of the episodes! Here they are:

  1. Morning
  2. Afternoon
  3. Evening
  4. Dead of Night
  5. Daybreak
  6. Final Minutes

My Thoughts
It looks like the episodes will have individual names, rather than “28 Hours, Part 1”, “28 Hours, Part 2”, and so forth like Albums 53 and 58 had. While I am slightly disappointed, I am also glad that they all have names, since they will make it easier to keep track of. These titles don’t tell us much about the content of the episodes, though. Perhaps we can infer some things by the other hints that were dropped in this podcast, which I’ll get to in a moment.

Jason and Jillian
Another fan asked if there are any future plans that involve Jason and Jillian as a couple. Kathy Buchanan replied that “Jason and Jillian are very different people. So, it’s kind of hard to imagine something long-term for them.” She went on to say that the first scene in 28 Hours is Connie thinking about Jason and Jillian getting together to which Jason has numerous reasons why that is not possible. She went on to say that both are in Album 73 and that, “Some interesting things happen to each of them.”

My Thoughts
Alright, cool, a detail about Album 73! Connie will mention the idea of Jason and Jillian getting together, and then Jason shutting down the idea. Similar to discussions that the Odyssey fans have had, I suppose. She is a very controversial character from what I’ve observed. Some fans like her, and others dislike her. Personally, I’m very interested in hearing what the AIO team plans to do with Jillian.

The Rydell Saga
Another question asked was if we will see any episodes as Morrie, Whit and Suzu as a family. Phil Lollar replied that we will. They just recorded one called “Value in the Process“, where “they’re interacting in a much more family situation than they have in the past. We’re still not leaving the character of Morrie and Suzu out of the intrigue that they get into, but we kind of want to see what they’re like as a family before we get more into the other stuff that they do. This is the first of those kinds of episodes.” Marshal Younger confirmed that this episode will be in Album 74, which Nathan Hoober said the album does not have a title yet.

My Thoughts
I’m very interested in this next Rydell episode. Before “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off” was released, I had assumed that the episode would be about Whit taking the Rydell kids into his house and getting them settled in, but it turned out it wasn’t. I’m glad that this next episode will focus on that because I am very interested in seeing how Morrie and Suzu will interact with Whit and Jason at home. Plus, there are not many episodes where Whit’s house appears, so that would be fun to hear.

Renee and Horus Appearing Outside the Club!
A question was asked regarding the return of Horus, Eugene’s lab assistant, and Mrs. Krammer. While they didn’t say anything about Mrs. Krammer, they had a lot to say about Horus and Renee Carter. Horus will be in an episode entitled “Renee Renewed“. Then, Nathan Hoobler stated, “We can reveal that Renee will make her first appearance in an album episode.” She’s proven to be so popular that they’re going to bring her into the regular rotation.

My Thoughts
My initial reaction to this news: YES! (Followed by more excited yelling) I am very happy that Renee will be appearing in the mainstream albums and not only in the AIO Club exclusive episodes. Back in 2019, David Hilder of AIO Update wrote an excellent article about the great potential of Renee D. Carter and her need to appear outside the Club. I am very happy that this is now becoming a reality. It wasn’t clear whether “Renee Renewed” will be a Club episode or an album episode, but I am still very elated by this news that those who are not in the Club will be able to hear her, alongside Horus.

That’s about all the major things that were revealed in the latest edition of the Official Adventures in Odyssey Podcast. I would recommend heading over to the website or whatever you use to listen to the episodes and give it a listen, the AIO Team’s interactions are very fun to hear.

Slightly Different Album 73 Summary
In other news, on CBD, the short summary for Album 73 has been changed a little bit.

The clock is ticking . . . launching you toward an explosive showdown! In this 6-part adventure, the Whit’s End crew dashes to solve a heart-pounding mystery while offering biblical truths and moral foundations for life. This audio drama serves as a perfect springboard for initiating deep conversations with your child.

CBD

Not very major changes have been made to this generalized summary, but it is a little different. This is another reference to something explosive in the summary. Why do the summaries keep referencing explosives? Is it a bomb? Someone’s temper? I am very intrigued and also excited to listen and find out what it is. Don’t forget to pre-order the album from CBD and Amazon and to sign up for the Adventures in Odyssey Club so that you can hear this much-anticipated album!

Well, there you go, that’s the latest news. What are your thoughts on it all? Anything you’re most excited about? Be sure to leave a comment!

-Signed, Polehaus53
Advertisement