When radio drama fell out of fashion alongside the uprise of almighty television, humankind faced a fateful question. Would we ever simply hear another story again? Decades later, the art of podcasting reunited our species with its inborn love of listening. Though talk shows and audio-documentary series reign supreme over the podcasting realm, fiction series compose a thriving niche. And as should surprise no one, most of ‘em are freaky and supernatural. Because humankind also has an inborn love of that noise.
But as technology is wont to do, it has boosted this craze into the next medium. A new Apple TV+ series aims to capitalize on the unique thrill of listening to a thriller story. But, like, with a TV part. As you can see in the first teaser for Calls, just below, the visual component is minimal; merely abstract CGI illustrations corresponding with the audio carrying the story. The unusual artistic decision looks to make for a gripping, trippy, unsettling viewing/listening experience.
The story involves a handful of distinct telephone calls, all of which seem to descend into some manifestation of chaos. Though the calls appear unrelated to one another at the start, promotional material suggests a larger conflict unifying the story.
What makes the project even more exciting is a top-notch cast. Actors lending their voices to Calls include Pedro Pascal, Rosario Dawson, Ben Schwartz, Karen Gillan, Aubrey Plaza, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Nick Jonas, Danny Pudi, Lily Collins, Riley Keough, Judy Greer, Nicholas Braun, Jaeden Martell, Clancy Brown, Jennifer Tilly, Paola Nuńez, Edi Patterson, Stephen Lang, Joey King, Paul Walter Hauser, and Mark Duplass.
What’s more, horror maven Fede Álvarez helms the series, which is based on a French program of the same name. Calls will comprise nine episodes, all of which will hit Apple TV+ on March 19.