A clue to what state Odyssey can be in

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HurchinIsAbsurd
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A clue to what state Odyssey can be in

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Every time people have tried to figure out what state odyssey is in, there appear inconsistencies, for example:
1.Odyssey has to be west of the Mississippi river (Radio stations start with K, which only applies to states west of the river. I have lived in both of these sides before and can confirm.)
2.Odyssey has to be north of the Ohio River, which is a river that is entirely east of the Mississippi.

This makes it impossible to find a definitive state that Odyssey.

Keyword Definitive.

In Podcast 28 of The Ceiling Fan (An AIO fan podcast, which could be considered an audio drama in and of itself), the host, Ethan Daniels (played by Kevin McCreary), continues his road trip to find odyssey (an arc spanning several episodes) and on his way to colorado springs, one of the many stops, he runs into Bob Smithouser and seizes the opportunity for an interview. When asked about Odyssey's state, Bob says that he believes that Odyssey is somehow transported state to state. As Bob puts it himself:

"Sorta like the island in Lost. Whenever someone gets too close to finding it (Odyssey), for its own protection, Paul McCusker goes into the tunnel under Whit's End and turns that donkey wheel and makes the town disappear and reappear somewhere else, and sometimes, it can go into the past, which I think would explain its ability to maintain that Mayberry-esque quality. Just a theory."

(Kind of unrelated, but I never watched Lost, so can someone please give me context on what is a "donkey wheel"?)

Anyway, the theory that Odyssey can travel through space and time to keep its location a secret is a very interesting theory, which I agree with.

I'd like to know y'all's opinions on this idea.
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Polehaus53
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Ah, yes; Odyssey’s location. A favorite topic among the fans. There have been some discussions on Odyssey’s location here on the Soda Shop as well. This topic and this one are a few of them. Personally, I’m in the camp of Odyssey being somewhere in Ohio. However, this is one of the most intriguing theories I’ve ever heard. Odyssey can travel through time and space to keep its location a secret? I like it! \:D/

I as well have never seen Lost, but I assume, based on what the wording and what I have just looked up, that turning a “donkey wheel” refers to a steering wheel of sorts which moves the town to a different location or time period. Whenever someone gets too close to discovering its location, the writers steer the town to relocate it.

This would explain the strange inconsistencies that we have in Odyssey if this is the case. Odyssey Scoop’s Where Odyssey Is Not list is a great compilation of all the possible locations of the town. I personally find it very hard to keep these facts straight. :mad: It would make sense if the Odyssey writers just had a steering wheel to relocate the city in order to confuse us.

I’ve heard theories that Odyssey is set in a different time, like the early 2000s. I can see how this would make sense. The albums 33-35 are indicators of this, given the early computer technology we see in them. But then the next thing you know in album 53: The Green Ring Conspiracy we have smartphones and tracking devices and other kinds of very modern technology. I could say more, but perhaps the technology of Odyssey is another topic for another time. But it is an interesting thought that if Odyssey can move through time also, then it would make sense for it to be set in the early 2000s in one episode and in the 2020s in another episode.

I’m reminded of Official Podcast 346, where the AIO Team are asked where Odyssey is located, and they have a fun time making it a running gag with them naming every single place on earth that is mentioned throughout the episode as the town’s location ”Oh, yeah, that’s where Odyssey is!” It got old, but it was pretty funny and showed that they probably won’t be giving us a definitive location anytime soon. :lol: I recall that there was another addition of the podcast where they said something along the lines that Odyssey is not given a state but is meant to be a place where any listener can find it in within their own town. Perhaps this meaning is something that we should take into consideration.
Overall, excellent topic, HurchinIsAbsurd; this is something that I shall definitely be thinking more. :yes:
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Polehaus53 wrote:
Sun Nov 13, 2022 1:51 am
I’ve heard theories that Odyssey is set in a different time, like the early 2000s. I can see how this would make sense. The albums 33-35 are indicators of this, given the early computer technology we see in them. But then the next thing you know in album 53: The Green Ring Conspiracy we have smartphones and tracking devices and other kinds of very modern technology. I could say more, but perhaps the technology of Odyssey is another topic for another time. But it is an interesting thought that if Odyssey can move through time also, then it would make sense for it to be set in the early 2000s in one episode and in the 2020s in another episode.
Funny that you brought this up, the other day I realised that if you use certain episodes (which happen in specific years) as a guide then the whole series takes place over about 10 years. the young whit series is set in the 30's which lines up with Whit being old enough to serve in ww2. 'The case of the secret Room" (one of the few 'present day" episodes to give a rough date setting) states that 1946 over is 40 years ago. (making the year 1989-90, and Whit himself around 60-65). I then counted each 'batch' of episodes set at Christmas (according to production/airdate) and found it was about 7-8 years. round that up to 10 to fill in the larger time gaps in between albums and that makes the Year around 2000. technology wise, scientists in 2015 did Brainwave experiments similar to Eugene's during the Novacom Saga (2002).

Additionally, the ages of the main characters work pretty well with this theory: Whit is around 70-75, Eugene/Katrina/Wooton/Penny are all around 30-35, Connie is a bit younger at around 26 and Jason either side of 40. This also means the 'kids' in "the triangled Web" were around the age Connie was at the start of the show, and that Whit and the Meltsners were absent for just over a year.
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Polehaus53 wrote:
Sun Nov 13, 2022 1:51 am
I’ve heard theories that Odyssey is set in a different time, like the early 2000s.
What we can say for sure is that by Album 50 it is the 21st century. In "A Capsule Comes to Town", Connie says, "Is this the 21st century?".
This is a rhetorical question reflecting the fact that Odyssey has hints of a 40's/50's America yet is in a modern time.
But because of this, we can safely assume that Album 50 and onward is after 1999.

HOWEVER- because of my theory, we also have to acknowledge the fact that Odyssey can travel into the past. So, at the very least, the episode "A Capsule Comes to Town" is after 1999. Who knows if later albums are before that. I believe that your analysis on the technology of certain episodes can help with that.
Polehaus53 wrote:
Sun Nov 13, 2022 1:51 am
Overall, excellent topic, HurchinIsAbsurd
Thanks.
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I have to admit this concept slightly frustrates me. When most people study events in works of fiction, the assumption is that the fictional world is basically orderly and logical like ours and that there are objective truths, even if they are sometimes obscure and even if we occasionally have to retcon or even decanonize some things to reconcile things and build a coherent reality. This logic, however, seems to assume inherent chaos, that when followed through, begins and ends with the fundamental idea that "it's impossible to conclusively know anything about the Odyssey world". At that point, we're left with mere meta-discussion; the most we can say about any information is 'The author intended it to be like this in this episode, but it could be arbitrarily completely different in some other one'. I don't think this is a desirable conclusion, or a necessary one either. Most apparent paradoxes do have conceivable resolutions, and even if they don't, it seems better to deal with them case-by-case than to give up on order altogether.

There are some potential solutions to the K-problem. They might not be particularly strong, or as strong as we might like, but if we remember that Whit has connections and can use them to get things that other people don't, it might be able to 'help us over the hump' and make an otherwise-satisfying solution work, even if it isn't the most perfect or plausible one in real life.

Possibility 1) Radio stations don't have to comply with the letter rule if they had the callsign before the rule was passed; they're grandfathered in. There was apparently an early radio station in Odyssey, since the radio equipment was left there at Whit's End. Maybe the original radio station was KYDS, and Whit is simply resuming broadcasting. The main difficulty with this, besides the apparent strong coincidence of the letters 'KYDS', is that broadcast licenses expire over time, and this likely would have happened by the time Whit got around to using the radio equipment.
Possibility 2) Although radio stations after the rule was passed normally require these letters, and the KYDS callsign isn't grandfathered in, Whit nevertheless obtained a special exemption from the government. This might not be as radical as it sounds, considering that he is a secret agent. Maybe he occasionally sends out encoded messages, and the convenient and punny name "KYDS Radio" helps conceal it.
Possibility 3) This regulation exists in our world, but not in the AIO world. Honestly, I don't like this solution much, because the context of the show suggests that the AIO world should usually, by default, be like ours. However, I can live with this if there's no alternative.

____________

Concerning the AIO timeline and technology, I've studied this (although not as completely as I would like). Here's some work on a timeline I did some time back, although there is room for improvement, things I would like to add or change.

Quoting from my post on the subject in ToO, we can get a good guess for the current AIO year by looking at Connie's timeline:
2021 Bob wrote:The AIO beginning date can be projected from early episodes. In Connie Comes to Town, Connie was a waitress "last summer" in California. The minimum age to work as a waitress in California was 14. Connie is 15 in Stormy Weather, and of that episode she still hasn't been in town long, so it is reasonable to guess she is 15 as of her introduction.

In "The Price of Freedom", just a few episodes before "Stormy Weather", we learn that Captain McGinty was killed in Vietnam, apparently during the American evacuation, which would most likely be '75. Kirk was born after his father's death, and is 12 as of this episode. This would date the chronological year in AIO time at '88, which was also the year these episodes were being released. This seems to indicate Connie would have likely been born in 1973.

Jules was born as a result of Bill and Jan's very short marriage, which can be dated (although I don't have "Life Expectancy" handy to do it from). I think the order is that he married Jan after April but before May. We see April in "Father's Day", where Connie is at least 16. So, Connie could be as much as 17 years older than Jules, although 16 may be possible, and 15 might not be impossible.

In "California Dreams", Jules is said to be 16. Assuming this is true, this would seem to place Connie at being somewhere from 31 to 33 years old. 1973 + 33 = 2006, so that gives us an approximate 'maximum year' the show timeline could be at.
A key to understanding the AIO timeline, I believe, is to keep in mind that there isn't a set amount of time that passes from episode to episode, or album to album. We have to keep track of things by events in the episodes, not a simple count of the episodes themselves. We also have to remember that since episodes, by definition, focus on things that are noteworthy, it's plausible that not every event that is a thing in these characters' lives will be recorded. The Christmas approach isn't a bad one, and would give us a decent projection of the timeline if we didn't have any alternatives, but the direct evidence we have from the episodes themselves give us something more thorough.

Regarding the technology, it isn't hard to make the case that any world where Mr. Whittaker has invented virtual reality technology is going to be on a faster pace than ours. ;-) Nevertheless, as Solomon observed, "There's nothing new under the sun". Although the world has a modern feel, the reality is that most of the modern technology and phenomena we see basically existed in the late '90s or early '00s, even if it wasn't yet mainstream or didn't look exactly how it does now. The Appleberry smartphone, for example is obviously a partial riff on the iPhone, but we had Blackberries, Palm Pilots, etc. before the iPhone came out, and it could just as well be a device like those (particularly the Blackberry, since it is part of the name).

____________

On the subject of characters' ages, I determined Connie's approximate age in the present, 31-33, in the quote above. In the same post, I also determined the age range Whit could be in:
2021 Bob wrote:Guadalcanal was from 1942-1943, and Mr. Whittaker was either in his 'late teens' or 'early 20s' at the time. Without doing an extensive study of his age, in the present day in AIO time, and allowing for mistakes and ambiguities in these rudimentary calculations, he would be elderly, from a range like 80-86 years old. Considering his current activities, he could certainly be said to be well-preserved, but not yet to the point 'above the lot of mortals'.
I haven't studied Eugene's age as much, and since I don't have AIO Club handy, my materials here are much more sparse. I will say that I've always pictured him as being at most a couple of years older than Connie. "Champ of the Camp" seems to suggest they are similar ages. baysimp (on #aio) stated that in "Prisoners of Fear", it is explicitly said that the events in the past happened "twenty years ago" and that Eugene was "7" (meaning that he would be 27 in "Prisoners of Fear"). Recent episodes that I don't have access to in the Buck arc are also said to discuss Eugene's age. At any rate, the existence of the brief 'triangular' relationship, where Eugene could plausibly be thought to be involved with either Katrina or Connie, suggests they must all be at similar ages.

Wooton is probably a few years older than Connie or Eugene. In "Odyssey Sings", we learn that Wooton is "in his 30s" (because all of his songs are autobiographical). Also, as I recall, his niece Talia in "For the Fun of It" (some time earlier) is either 10 or 12 (someone else can fill in the exact age). That suggests Wellington (and thus Wooton) would be, at the earliest, 28 years old in that episode, and he's likely a few years older, considering that most people don't get married or begin to have children exactly when they're 18. If Wellington was 23 when he got married and 33-35 when Talia visited Wooton, that suggests Wooton would be in his late 30s or early 40s by now. Listeners with readier access to these episodes could likely determine more precise results. I don't remember much about Penny's chronology, but my feeling is that she is probably closer to Connie's age than Wooton's.

We can estimate about how old Jason is, based on "Memories of Jerry", "Silent Night" and "The Boat People", none of which, unfortunately, I have access to at the moment. AIOWiki suggests that Jerry died in 1971. If Jason is 10-12 at that point in time, then that means he'd be born somewhere from 1959-1961. That would put him somewhere from 12-14 years older than Connie, and indicates he'd be 43-47 years old now.
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Bob wrote:
Fri Nov 18, 2022 12:05 am
I have to admit this concept slightly frustrates me. When most people study events in works of fiction, the assumption is that the fictional world is basically orderly and logical like ours and that there are objective truths, even if they are sometimes obscure and even if we occasionally have to retcon or even decanonize some things to reconcile things and build a coherent reality. This logic, however, seems to assume inherent chaos, that when followed through, begins and ends with the fundamental idea that "it's impossible to conclusively know anything about the Odyssey world". At that point, we're left with mere meta-discussion; the most we can say about any information is 'The author intended it to be like this in this episode, but it could be arbitrarily completely different in some other one'. I don't think this is a desirable conclusion, or a necessary one either. Most apparent paradoxes do have conceivable resolutions, and even if they don't, it seems better to deal with them case-by-case than to give up on order altogether.

____________

Concerning the AIO timeline and technology, I've studied this (although not as completely as I would like). Here's some work on a timeline I did some time back, although there is room for improvement, things I would like to add or change.

Quoting from my post on the subject in ToO, we can get a good guess for the current AIO year by looking at Connie's timeline:

A key to understanding the AIO timeline, I believe, is to keep in mind that there isn't a set amount of time that passes from episode to episode, or album to album. We have to keep track of things by events in the episodes, not a simple count of the episodes themselves. We also have to remember that since episodes, by definition, focus on things that are noteworthy, it's plausible that not every event that is a thing in these characters' lives will be recorded. The Christmas approach isn't a bad one, and would give us a decent projection of the timeline if we didn't have any alternatives, but the direct evidence we have from the episodes themselves give us something more thorough.

Regarding the technology, it isn't hard to make the case that any world where Mr. Whittaker has invented virtual reality technology is going to be on a faster pace than ours. ;-) Nevertheless, as Solomon observed, "There's nothing new under the sun". Although the world has a modern feel, the reality is that most of the modern technology and phenomena we see basically existed in the late '90s or early '00s, even if it wasn't yet mainstream or didn't look exactly how it does now. The Appleberry smartphone, for example is obviously a partial riff on the iPhone, but we had Blackberries, Palm Pilots, etc. before the iPhone came out, and it could just as well be a device like those (particularly the Blackberry, since it is part of the name).

____________

On the subject of characters' ages, I determined Connie's approximate age in the present, 31-33, in the quote above. In the same post, I also determined the age range Whit could be in:
2021 Bob wrote:Guadalcanal was from 1942-1943, and Mr. Whittaker was either in his 'late teens' or 'early 20s' at the time. Without doing an extensive study of his age, in the present day in AIO time, and allowing for mistakes and ambiguities in these rudimentary calculations, he would be elderly, from a range like 80-86 years old. Considering his current activities, he could certainly be said to be well-preserved, but not yet to the point 'above the lot of mortals'.
I haven't studied Eugene's age as much, and since I don't have AIO Club handy, my materials here are much more sparse. I will say that I've always pictured him as being at most a couple of years older than Connie. "Champ of the Camp" seems to suggest they are similar ages. baysimp (on #aio) stated that in "Prisoners of Fear", it is explicitly said that the events in the past happened "twenty years ago" and that Eugene was "7" (meaning that he would be 27 in "Prisoners of Fear"). Recent episodes that I don't have access to in the Buck arc are also said to discuss Eugene's age. At any rate, the existence of the brief 'triangular' relationship, where Eugene could plausibly be thought to be involved with either Katrina or Connie, suggests they must all be at similar ages.
the writers can't even agree on Eugene's age for the same episode! in As Buck would have it Eugene is meant to be a kid when Buck was 2, putting him in his early to mid 20's, then the writers stated that in that same episode Eugene is supposedly in his mid 30's!
On the subject of Connie's age, there's a bit of an in-joke in 'meteorite mayhem" where Connie's numberplate is '16 4 ever'
in regards to Whit, after seeing how Dick van dyke's doing at 96 I could well believe he's 80-86!
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djchatswithu wrote:
Sat Nov 19, 2022 8:31 am
the writers can't even agree on Eugene's age for the same episode! in As Buck would have it Eugene is meant to be a kid when Buck was 2, putting him in his early to mid 20's, then the writers stated that in that same episode Eugene is supposedly in his mid 30's!
If that's so, that's a definite fault. I don't see any obvious way to reconcile the time range; you have a little flexibility depending on how old a 'kid' is, but not enough. We have to retcon it somehow, but any solution (besides just throwing up our hands and saying "It didn't happen like that") is likely to be rather technical.

For what it's worth, there have been other recent timeline faults in continuity, even in otherwise great stories. The main fault with the Olivia arc that I'm aware of is that "Leonid" refers to Olivia as being a '12-year-old girl', when she can't be, given that's how old she was when she first came on the show. However, since this is in Olivia's head and "Leonid" isn't a reliable source of truth, this can be explained.
djchatswithu wrote:
Sat Nov 19, 2022 8:31 am
in regards to Whit, after seeing how Dick van dyke's doing at 96 I could well believe he's 80-86!
I agree that I don't think Whit being in such good shape is unreasonable.

I wasn't aware of it, but apparently the "Young Whit" book series, according to baysimp, says that he was born in October 1920, which agrees with the high side of the range estimated here.
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Just saw this comment on the AIO Facebook page (from a few weeks ago):
"It feels like a long time for us, but not that many years have passed in Odyssey 🙂"
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