I really couldn’t start talking about podcasts and reviewing them without starting on this particular podcast. When I got my iPod Nano about five years ago, I was introduced into the podcasting world. It was a bit odd to me, this “internet radio”. But I found topics that I liked being podcasted such as Star Trek and World of Warcraft. Treks-In-Scifi was one of the first ones I picked out of the crowd, so I synced it to my iPod Nano and a new part of the internet opened up to me. While WoW eventually faded from my interests and so did the podcasts that went along with it, I would continue to be a podcast listener ever since and TSF has always been there.
Started back in September of 2005, the TV series “Star Trek: Enterprise” had come to an end and is still the last TV show to air. Rico was concerned that the franchise he held dear would fade away, so when he heard about a new audio format called podcasts, he jumped on it. Treks In Sci-Fi grew from a podcast that focused on Star Trek and eventually grew to talk about all kinds of fantasy and Sci-Fi subjects. Whether it was TV, books, movies, videogames or collectibles, Rico would cover it ever week. The shows contained some news, maybe a collectible review here and there and then would focus on the episode or movie that Rico would cover that week. The community that has grown out of this podcast is something different and special and I’ve been a part of it for the past couple of years, for better or worse for said community. ;). This is one of the few podcasts where I have listened to all the podcast episodes and it was quite clear that Rico has really honed his abilities over the years.
What sets this podcast apart:
- Solo Host
- Great community
- Consistent High Quality Production
- Guest Hosted Shows
- Guest comments: emails, audio and videos
- Weekly & Regular
- All about Star Trek
- Has Star Wars, gaming, and many other geeky topics
Rico as a podcaster has a good, solid voice. His personality is that of someone you can meet and get along with. Like a friend discussing Star Trek for hours. The quality of each episode is great, no crackling of the mics and it isn’t hard to hear Rico at all. The podcasts are a good length and avoid going too long. The information he gives on his podcast is just the right amount to keep it interesting without going too extremely geeky too. This combined with the quality of the clips he’ll play makes the episodes easy and enjoyable to listen to each week. How he keeps this going for six years on a consist basis escapes me. And Rico knows his stuff.
His weekly episodes are diverse and varied with full episode commentaries, clip shows, skype calls, video casts and more. He also does the occasional interview with authors or other important people from the Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre. Full episode commentaries are where Rico will take an episode and play it in the background, and he’ll throw in his own comments and some facts he would have researched before hand. Clip shows are almost the same except he just takes clips and inserts them in-between his talking about the episode. Video casts are rare, but usually involve the community sending in clips for anniversary shows. He’s also done quite a number of Skype calls with the TSF community, talking about the latest summer or winter movie hits or whatever other subjects he feels like covering. His podcast is open to comments and creativity from the public as well. I have no doubt that it is the community that Rico has managed to foster out of this podcast that has kept its longevity for so long. The podcast also has this guy, Rick Moyer, who does parody songs of Star Trek and other geeky stuff in a similar vein to Weird Al. I’ve tweeted about….oh a few of them. Well, maybe more than a few of them. You can find Rick Moyer’s archive of parody songs here. They’re free, so go. Go now. You back? Good. I inserted a pic of Rick Moyer below while you were gone. 😉
Rico has two very unique things as a podcaster. He’s been doing the podcast solo for six years straight without any co-host(s). Rico is also, so far as I know, the only podcaster I’ve heard of that lets people create podcasts on their own and submit them to him to be published as their own stand-alone shows. I worked with Daniel Elfers, & Mina to produce an episode all about Chuck, the TV show. We gave a general overview of the show and what we liked/didn’t like. We handled all the editing of the podcast and simply sent it to him to publish. He submitted it a few days later with a minor addition to the beginning if I remember correctly. But we were only one of many other guest hosts who have done it and continue to do it and that shows a lot of faith in other people and I have to respect that. 🙂
As a final note, TSF has been credited as the “Father” of many other podcasts. The podcast has certainly created a network of a sort around it over the years. However, its hard to say how many podcasters started and kept going due to Rico’s dedication to podcasting. We shall never know…
TSF has the distinction of being the only podcast I have stuck with since those new beginnings of mine into podcasting and its probably thanks to TSF that I kept listening to podcasts. The other first few podcasts eventually faded away, but TSF has stayed through it all and I am a picky person so that’s saying something :).
The podcast is available via RSS & iTunes officially on its website. The podcast itself is not an “enhanced podcast” and the show notes are fairly brief, giving a quick summary of what the show is about. The show also contains advertisements to other podcasts put in throughout the show sometimes and sometimes at the end of each podcast.
Its hard to find anything wrong with TSF. I mean, its not a perfect podcast, none are. TSF sets out to talk about Star Trek and other geeky subjects and does it well. Could it be better? Obviously, but given the current state of quality, its not necessary to add more work to make it “better” at this point.
And that’s my review of Treks In Scifi. If you like Star Trek, geeky topics and news for the week, this is the guy to listen to. If you have even the slightest interest in podcasts, you should give him a look anyway, as you might hear a promo for another podcast that might interest you. This is a show for those that are into Sci-Fi and Fantasy, especially of the Star Trek kind. Give it a look.
Until next time…