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I’ve always considered myself a bit of an expert on THREADS. As a teenager in 1984, I was one of the traumatised millions who watched the film when it was first broadcast, and I’ve seen it countless times since. I’ve lost count of the number of TV recordings, VHS tapes, DVD, and blu ray versions I’ve owned over the years. I dragged my wife to Halifax a few years back to see it on the big screen followed by a Q&A with one of the stars, REECE DINSDALE. I’ve recommended it to literally hundreds of people, both at book events and in the day-to-day. When I worked for HSBC many years ago and regularly found myself in Sheffield, I’d even track down the filming locations in my spare time.

Atomic Hobo podcast logo

I thought I was something of an obsessive. Turns out JULIE MCDOWELL is a far bigger THREADS geek than me. Today, I want to recommend her excellent ATOMIC HOBO podcast to you.

Since 2018, ATOMIC HOBO has covered a huge range of topics relating to nuclear war and nuclear preparedness, much of it focused on how inadequate the guidance and protection would be to you and I – the ordinary folk a million miles removed from those making the decisions and carrying out the attacks. I think it’s this viewpoint that gives the podcast its appeal. Julie’s delivery and approach puts you at ease – it’s like a cosy fireside chat with a friend who’s spent far too long thinking about the end of the world. She dissects outdated governmental reports and propaganda publications such as PROTECT AND SURVIVE, talking about them with a brutal honesty, and almost always focussing on the utter uselessness and inadequacy of the official line. Along the way she also interviews relevant folks, most notably NICHOLAS MEYER who directed THE DAY AFTER, MICK JACKSON who directed THREADS, and RITA MAY who played (unforgettably) Mrs Kemp.

But what really keeps me coming back to the podcast is the ongoing FOUR MINUTES OF THREADS episodes, in which Julie studies every frame of the film in uncomfortable detail. No matter how well I think I know THREADS, no matter how much horror I think I’ve seen, Julie always manages to uncover a grim detail I’ve missed.

ATOMIC HOBO is available wherever you access your podcasts and on PATREON. Julie’s website is www.juliemcdowall.com. It’s a good time to start following the podcast – you can subscribe to the ATOMIC HOBO YouTube channel, where she’s just started adding video versions of FOUR MINUTES OF THREADS. She’s also got a book coming out in April – ATTACK WARNING RED!: HOW BRITAIN PREPARED FOR NUCLEAR WAR – which you can pre-order here.

Thanks for reading.

Over the years I’ve recommended many films, books, and podcasts. You can find a full list of them here.

A lot of folks find their way to this site from search engines and social media. If you’re new here, let me introduce myself – I’m DAVID MOODY, author of dystopian horror and science-fiction. I’m best known for the HATER and AUTUMN novels, but you can find all my books here.

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