Where Threads Come Loose
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Where Threads Come Loose?
A half-hour radiodrama series produced in Minnesota, specializing in satire and horror. It was originally produced at KUOM-AM (770 Radio K) in Minneapolis between 1994 and 1997. We haven't done any scientific tests or anything, but we're pretty sure that it was the funniest and scariest comedy and horror radio-drama anthology series ever produced on KUOM-AM from 1994 to 1997.

Where has Where Threads Come Loose been broadcast?
Threads' home station is KUOM-AM (Radio K) in Minneapolis. The original run of 39 episodes was syndicated on public-radio and college stations across the U.S. and Canada, thanks to the arcane magic of satellite transmission and the even more arcane magic of sending boxes of cassettes through the mail. Thus we fulfilled a lifelong dream to annoy people thousands of miles away. We were played on these and other radio stations:
KUOM-AM, Minneapolis, MN (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities)
KZSC-FM, Santa Cruz, CA ( University of California at Santa Cruz)
KQAL-FM, Winona, MN (Winona State University)
CFRC-FM, Kingston, Ontario (Radio Queen's University)
KVSC-FM, St. Cloud, MN (St. Cloud State University)
• Golden Hours Radio, Oregon Public Radio, Portland, OR
WUTM-FM, Martin, TN (University of Tennessee at Martin)
KBCU-FM, North Newton, KS (Bethel College)
WCVM-FM, Morrisville, NY (State University of New York)
• KSRQ-FM Thief River Falls, MN (Northland Technical College)
KSDP-AM, Sand Point, AK

This is Chris.

This might be Tony.
Who created the show?
Threads was written, directed and produced by Christopher Bahn (that's me) and Tony Pagel. Many others were involved as well, and I've tried to thank everyone who helped on this page and given credit where possible on the pages for each individual episode.

Are any Threads episodes available on CD, cassette, mp3, or other audio format?
Not right now. Sorry.

Are these really "frequently asked" questions, or are you just making rhetorical use of a Q&A format?

I've never heard the show before. What are some good episodes to start with?
Based on audience feedback, my considered artistic judgment and thoughtful deliberation on our legacy, and a series of coin flips, I'd point you toward these: The Sherlock Holmes stories "Adventure of the Spooky Zombies" and "Very Strange Case of the Visible Man"; the Café Pathetique poets shows "Apartment of the Damned," "Perpetual Bile Machine" and "Lost Kafka Notebooks"; or "Brownies and Milk," "An Endearing Western" and "Paper Blizzard."

How can I contact Where Threads Come Loose?
Click here to .

Ramon the Monster awakes, in the episode "Frank's Esteemed Monster." Art by Dan Grothe
Who plays the music on the soundtrack?
Minnesota artists provide the opening and closing themes for the show. The opening is Manplanet's "I Robot"; the closing theme is Terry Eason's "What To Do." Other musicians who can be heard in the series are Accident Clearinghouse, Astronaut Wife, Smattering, and the artists of Grimsey Records and Endearing Records. We're pleased and grateful to these independent musicians for their support, which has been invaluable to the continued existence of the program—and they make some terrific music, so do yourself a favor and check out their works.

What have you been doing since the show's original run?
After taking a break of several years away from the program, I came back to it from 2001 to 2005 to remaster the original 39-episode series—adding a new theme song, enhancing music and sound effects and doing other general improvements. Read more about that in our episode guide. 18 of the 39 original shows were remastered before the project was shelved in 2005.

What is an "anthology series"?
Each episode stands on its own like a collection of short stories—or like "The Twilight Zone" and "Tales From the Crypt." Sometimes more than one episode will feature the same characters, like the Jules and K stories in our show, but just as often it's a whole new ball game.

I like to read what journalists say about things. What do they say about you?
• "Expect wacky wordplay (including painful puns)." —Twin Cities Reader
• "[Threads] ... aims to bring the radio drama of the 1930s and '40s into the '90s. Classic fedora-clad (or so we imagine) detectives mingle with modern coffeehouse patrons. All are given the same sardonic treatment." —Minnesota Daily
• "The show takes on everything from modern pop culture to ancient bards, often juxtaposing and overlapping them." —Star Tribune, Minneapolis-St. Paul

The World's Smartest Man faces an army of mindless walking dead in Sherlock Holmes and the Spooky Zombies. Art by Audry Wolters; background by Jason Sandberg
What is radiodrama anyway?
It's like watching a movie with your eyes closed.

No, that's not quite right. It's like a movie where the lady sitting in front of you is wearing one of those big hats, you know the ones I mean, the big Carmen Miranda banana hats, and she won't move or take the hat off even when you call the manager, because her husband owns a ten-percent stake in the local butter-flavored topping supply industry, and she thinks she's all hot stuff because one nasty word from her to her man shuts down the popcorn stands in a seven-county radius, so you fume silently for a while during the previews, and then you get the bright idea of just imagining what the actors on screen look like, and you can give the star George Clooney's body and your own face and the villain the other way around, and the special effects are tons better than anything in some dumb Industrial Light & Magic thing anyway, 'cause who needs that stuff when you have imagination and you can make up all the visuals the way you like them, and besides you're pretty sure there's a tarantula in that banana hat, so you'll be getting your revenge soon enough. That's radio drama.

Isn't radio drama a dead artistic medium, mainly produced in the early days of mass media before television took over?
Well, it's true that the popular peak of radio drama happened 30 years before I was born, which is why it's so often associated with "Old-Time Radio" to the point where the terms are almost synonymous for many people. But video most certainly did not kill the radio star. The tradition was kept alive though the 1970s by shows like "The CBS Radio Mystery Theater" and the late, lamented Douglas Adams' "The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy," and continues today with Garrison Keillor's "A Prairie Home Companion" and the Firesign Theater. Those are the most widely known names, but by no means the only ones; Jerry Stearns of Great Northern Audio has a voluminous page of other radiodrama shows on the web you might want to look at. (And as long as I'm plugging other shows, you ought to check out these websites on Joe Frank; Orson Welles' Mercury Theater radio dramas (including the famous "War of the Worlds"); Welles' "The Black Museum," and the 1930s-era The Shadow.)

What's your favorite color?
I'm sorry, I don't give out personal information.