The Gray Area Season 2

Inside the Gray Area: “Same Age Inside”

July 28, 2020

Writer and showrunner Edward Champion discusses the third installment of “Paths Not Taken,” delving into the origins of the songs, why he unintentionally ended up singing the songs, how the pandemic affected production, the origins of the electromatter scanner sound effect, recording glasses and bicycle bells, how you can find new sounds by altering pitch and speed, the influence of Doctor Who's sonic screwdriver, on making an action-driven episode, how the music is selected, talks with composers, how losing income during the pandemic influenced creative choices, the best music licensing services to use for audio drama, strategies on how to license music on a limited budget, lessons he learned from Jim Jarmusch's Stranger than Paradise, the sound design inside the dumpster, how the video game Beatbuddy: Tales of the Guardians gave him an idea on how to shape the story's atmosphere, balancing the “Rick and Morty shit” with realism, Chester's sound design and the pivotal assistance from Samantha Cooper and Rachel Baird in making this happen, why Zack Glassman is such a joy to work with, why the Receptionist is a childlike character, why it's important to combat dishonest character purity in narrative, phony virtue, It's a Wonderful Life, how schoolyard bullies inspired a plot twist, why Tony Danza is such an important part of The Gray Area, how a modest acting choice from Katrina Clairvoyant created a character dynamic, developing “Doc Brown mode” with Zack, how to create a realistic alien observational perspective, how “controversial” artistic choices emerge subconsciously from a commitment to realism and instinct, callbacks to “Waiting Room,” the surprisingly difficult efforts it took to find a taxi credit card machine from the 2010s, how common sounds are disappearing faster than you might expect, Lost, how a commitment to verisimilitude transforms art into a kind of accidental history, World War I research, more on Richard Aldington's Death of a Hero, plans for Season 3, recording Zack singing in the shower, establishing subtle story details that will pay off later, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, some of the crazy responses to the pandemic, why it's important to always invent ever more outlandish ideas for the sake of realism, depicting the unspeakable truths about business phone calls, honoring lost sounds, how to plant questions about the true stability of a relationship, the influence of Ghostbusters and the PKE meter, and why Chester got a big choir. (Running time: 24 minutes, 25 seconds)

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