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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2016 8:27 pm 
Mocha Jamocha
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The problem is that this calls into question how long it takes Connie to graduate high school. She first appears as a high schooler in Album 1, and graduates in Album 31, which means that by this timeline, it took her almost eight years to graduate (not counting the year she probably already had under her belt, given that she started the show at sixteen). It also means that certain child characters, like Lucy and Mandy, took at least five years to go through middle school, which doesn't jive with their respective characterizations as intelligent students. Unfortunately, I couldn't get your webpage to load, so I don't know about your methods and I can't comment on them, but I don't think it's as simple as "this amount of albums equals a year"—I think different groups of albums cover different periods of time.

I do like discussing the Odyssey timeline, though, especially as it relates to history and current events. I personally believe that the show begins in 1987 and only around ten years have passed, and here's why:

Given the constant references to arcades during the first few years of the show (a very '80s thing to be into) and the fact that there was an episode where everyone concluded that tabletop RPGs are evil incarnate (which falls in with the time of the moral panic over Dungeons and Dragons in the 1980s), I think it's safe to say that that's when the show begins. Whit, being born no later than 1924 (since he served in WWII) is now in his early sixties, and Jenny probably only died and Whit obtained the Fillmore Recreation Center and turned it into Whit's End a few years prior to that.

Then take into consideration how the generations of child characters work—they stick around from late elementary to all of middle school, which spans four years in most school systems. Two generations of kids have passed, meaning at least eight years have gone by; at this point, we're probably halfway through this new generation, so two years have passed by since Album 50. Putting this together, that means that about ten years have passed in-show, so that means that we are now in the year 1997. So if you make allowances for a couple of lapses in continuity, Connie's graduation doesn't take her quite so long and could fit within a normal timeframe, and Whit is in his early seventies instead of pushing eighty or over ninety. (Advances in technology can be explained by the mere existence of people like John Avery Whittaker; if he can create virtual reality technology that is enviable even by today's standards, then I can allow for smartphones becoming widespread a decade ahead of their time.)

More importantly, this also means that, if technology accelerates but everything else remains the same, the show is now set in the era of the Backstreet Boys. \:D/

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 4:15 pm 
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That might work if it weren't for a couple things. First, all the current characters wear clothing from this time period. Of course, that COULD be brushed off as like you said, just different things happening in their world than ours. But unfortunately in the February edition of Club House, it's plainly stated that when Wooton and Penny went to visit her parents, it was 2016. Wooton gives Penny a gift for valentine's day. It's Water World tickets for 2066. Penny's response is, "You got us Water World tickets for 50 years from now?" To deny this truth, you would have to say that Club House isn't canon, any more than fanfic might be.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 5:25 pm 
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Honestly? I kind of do deny that Clubhouse is canon, and I have for quite a while. It's a subscription magazine that not every listener gets, even if they're in the target demographic; I sort of put it on the same level as, say, the Harry Potter movies are to the books—it's only canon if you want it to be. I'd rather deny that Clubhouse is canon than suggest that Connie took over eight years to go through high school. (In the same vein, I also don't really take the official art to be canon, either—it's a suggestion to me, not a rule, since that same official art showed the clearly-redheaded Liz to be a brunette in every depiction of her, save the one in Clubhouse where she inexplicably has Aubrey's design.)

Besides, if the series is now in 2016 and Whit was born in 1924 (again, the latest year he'd have to have been born, given that he served in Guadalcanal), then he'd have to be 92. Now, I know some very active 92-year-olds, but none on Whit's level; it makes more sense to me that less time has passed, because I can believe in a sixty-seventy year old going on archaeological expeditions and surviving a blow to the head like he took in "The Top Floor" with minimal damage much more easily than I can someone who's in his eighties or nineties.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 8:02 pm 
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Merged the two Odyssey Time topics.


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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 8:39 pm 
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My bad, should have caught that. :oops:

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 9:10 pm 
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TigerShadow wrote:
The problem is that this calls into question how long it takes Connie to graduate high school. She first appears as a high schooler in Album 1, and graduates in Album 31, which means that by this timeline, it took her almost eight years to graduate (not counting the year she probably already had under her belt, given that she started the show at sixteen). It also means that certain child characters, like Lucy and Mandy, took at least five years to go through middle school, which doesn't jive with their respective characterizations as intelligent students. Unfortunately, I couldn't get your webpage to load, so I don't know about your methods and I can't comment on them, but I don't think it's as simple as "this amount of albums equals a year"—I think different groups of albums cover different periods of time.


Agreed. To be clear, my theories list each album as taking up x number of days, however I view that as an average, and not necessarily exact in each case (examples being albums which are explicitly stated to be a certain length of time long, like the GRC).

For ease of reference, here are my theories:
http://cryinbriandern.blogspot.com/p/odyssey-time.html


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 Post subject: AIO Time on the AIO Conspiracy
PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 10:36 pm 
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I have a feature on my site and I need references to the passage of time. Like how Jimmy says it's been three years since Family Vacation in Coming of Age.Here's the page link http://theaioconspiracy.weebly.com/aio-time.html

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Mon Sep 05, 2016 12:48 pm 
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In one episode, Jimmy also says it's been a year since everyone came to help by bringing presents, but that only indicates the passage of one year (Christmas) which may have been obvious anyway.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:21 pm 
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The whole smartphone issue is easily resolved by looking when smartphones were first released. 2005. I can believe that the same town with the Imagination Station is only 5 years ahead of real world developments. Edit: Also
The Day Ambrosia Stood Still has an EMP generator, and LCD is Canon as it is mentioned in No Way In, when Whit says Jason is going to Black Sands.

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 Post subject: Re: AIO Time on the AIO Conspiracy
PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:58 pm 
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Agent.MontyWhittaker wrote:
I have a feature on my site and I need references to the passage of time. Like how Jimmy says it's been three years since Family Vacation in Coming of Age.Here's the page link http://theaioconspiracy.weebly.com/aio-time.html


Honestly, if you want Odyssey time to make even the slightest bit of sense in the broader context of the show, you're gonna have to ignore stuff like that. The show tried a lot harder in its earlier days to pay attention to the passage of time, but now it's pretty clear that time goes much slower. (Really, all you need to do to throw a wrench into attempts to figure out Odyssey time based on every bit of info the show gives us is how long it took Connie to graduate from high school.)

Personally, I just apply broad strokes to the canon, ignore references to specific units of time from within the show, shrug, and hope for the best. Odyssey time theories, by their very nature, tend to resemble less of a solidly founded house and more of a Jenga tower.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 10:45 am 
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Ok personal I've always gone every 5 albums is around a year, Cause there is usually a Christmas episode somewhere in there and It just makes the most since on why Whit isn't dead yet (even though he is indeed old). Of course, this has its flaws to it.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 10:13 am 
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Actually my theory is that every 134 eps = 1 year.If you are up 134 episodes 3 times you get the Graduate, therefore Odyssey is currently in its 6th year. Odysseus is in 1995, assuming it started in 1989.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:27 pm 
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Agent.MontyWhittaker wrote:
Actually my theory is that every 134 eps = 1 year.If you are up 134 episodes 3 times you get the Graduate, therefore Odyssey is currently in its 6th year. Odysseus is in 1995, assuming it started in 1989.

That is reasonably. Except that a lot of the kid characters have grown up so Odyssey being only 6 years just wouldn't work. But I can see that.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:46 pm 
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MonkeyDude wrote:
That is reasonably. Except that a lot of the kid characters have grown up so Odyssey being only 6 years just wouldn't work. But I can see that.


It isn't necessarily that they have grown up. As Tiger stated, most of Whit's End's patrons are from upper elementary to middle school age. Just because a certain character disappeared does not mean that they are now twenty-eight with a wife and two kids living in a flat repurposed out of an old Maytag factory in the center of a Rust Belt city. There are two really simple conclusions here:
1). They stopped going to Whit's End because they are now older and have different focal points for their respective lives and activities.
2). The AIO team has decided to focus on children in the 8-14 range, since that is the major target audience of the program.

The town is not just what appears in the episodes. Running the risk of sounding delusional, the town of Odyssey exists, with people living normal lives, infrastructure and businesses coping with traffic and consumption, etc. We break the fourth wall twenty-four times in a year for twenty-five minutes each. We cannot see everything. We are not omnipotent. For all we know, Liz Horton (God forbid) may have gotten a nose piercing and is currently stressing out about finishing a report for her chemistry class so she can pass her junior year of high school.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 6:14 pm 
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MonkeyDude wrote:
Ok personal I've always gone every 5 albums is around a year, Cause there is usually a Christmas episode somewhere in there and It just makes the most since on why Whit isn't dead yet (even though he is indeed old). Of course, this has its flaws to it.

Odyssey time is very weird whit should be dead I glad he's not and Connie should be married and a mom by now!

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:23 am 
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Guys, I have come up with a new theory about Connie’s timeline. What if Jules’s mother was who Bill met after June and therefore Jules was born when Connie’s parents divorced. I think Connie is 11-12 in Champ of the camp. Which means she is 28 currently. Which also conviently line sup with who Old the writers say she is.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2019 8:08 pm 
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so my history/poli-sci-double-major older brother wrote this treatise. i agree with everything except that tom riley is dead, because rather than die tom riley is an immortal cryptid and that's the tea. anyway.

The Politics of the World of AIO

In order to talk about the politics of the world of AIO, we need to establish some kind of chronology.

To begin with, while Focus on the Family has said that Odyssey is “timeless,” there are certain things that place the beginnings of the show in the early 1990s, primarily the plot lines. The first Blackgaard arc, for instance, with “Blackgaard’s Castle”—which is, essentially, a video arcade—being a major competitor for Whit’s End, is an artifact of early ‘90s culture. At the episode level, “The Prodigal, Jimmy” also has a video arcade as a major hangout spot. Also at the episode level is the unfortunate “Castles and Cauldrons,” an artifact of the late ‘80s/early ‘90s “Dungeons and Dragons will eat your children’s souls” scare (and, by the way, what’s depicted isn’t so much tabletop D&D as LARPing, which even tabletop players think is a little weird).

I’m inclined to put the beginning of the show in the year 1990, mostly due to “The Last Great Adventure of Summer,” which involves a one-off character and his CIA agent father being chased by an enemy agent all the way to London, where said agent is captured and all their troubles are over. Fact is, this makes no sense unless A. the enemy agent is KGB and B. the Warsaw Pact and Soviet Union are on the verge of collapsing or have collapsed.

The next bit is both more and less speculative. Essentially, each group of child characters is, in Odyssey time, around for about three years—in terms of how we perceive it, around 20 albums or so. So, based on the above timeline, the Jimmy Barclay/Lucy Cunningham-Schultz/Curt Stevens et al band runs from 1990 to 1992-1993. This makes sense, mostly because all of these characters seem to be in middle school and don’t ever seem to hit high school. It also means that no, Connie wasn’t in high school forever. Also, the early ‘90s were a little more unsettled than most folks think, with Soviet WMD all over the place and demobilized soldiers and secret agents running around getting into trouble, which makes it a good place for the “Darkness Before Dawn” arc.

Moving on from there, we have the unfortunate half-episode hiatus (which, for chronology purposes, I will use to account for the fact that the first band will be finished with college before they should be if the three-year cycle holds), and then the second band of kids—Alex Jefferson/Sarah Pratchett/Cal Jordan/Aubrey Shepard. This runs from around 1995-1998, and encompasses the Novacom story arc and the Mitch subplot. The fact that, at this point, Connie is close to being 23-24 would also help explain why she practically throws herself at Mitch. If her friend circle is anything like the evangelical circles I’ve run in, a very large portion of her peers are either dating with intent to marry, engaged, or married, and she’s probably feeling a bit left out—I mean, come on, Eugene is in a dating-with-intent-to-marry relationship by this point.
Then we have the third and unfortunately short-lived band of kids—Mandy Straussberg/Trent DeWhite/Marvin Washington/Liz Horton, which doesn’t involve a lot of matters of great import, and runs from around 1998-2000. Also, Mandy’s and Rodney’s presences are accounted for by overuse of the Novabox mucking around with their brains.

Then we have the reboot, with the Parkers and Joneses and whatnot (can you tell when I stopped listening to the show?) and the Green Ring Conspiracy, where we re-introduce Monty Whittaker, who according to this timeline is in his very early twenties but is apparently trusted by the Secret Service to fulfill its most important but not most famous duty, which is to seek out and eradicate counterfeit money. (Seriously. That’s actually more important than protecting the President.) However, given that Whittakers apparently have a knack for this sort of work, this should not be surprising. This period is approximately 2001-2003—right now we’re somewhere in the middle of 2002, just offhand.

II. The World

We don’t really know a whole lot about the outside world in AIO, which is as it should be. However, there are some dropped clues, here and there. For example, Jason Whittaker makes reference to thinking that Regis Blackgaard worked for European Security, and does so in front of several people. One could, I think, safely assume that this was a governmental organization, and not an especially secret one, either. In other words, in the world of AIO, Europe has achieved a far greater level of intergovernmental cooperation and integration than it has in ours at the present time, much less the early 1990s, which would imply a much stronger European Union—perhaps something between the United States under the Articles of Confederation and the United States of the 1790s. As to how this happened, we’ll just blame it on Whit.

Furthermore, we have the existence of Rakistan. One can only assume that it is some sort of unholy fusion of Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan that exists in the early ‘90s despite the Cold War just having ended. At a hunch, in AIO world, Whit used his influence to keep us out of selling arms to Iraq, which meant Iran got to throw its weight around a bit to its east. (For that matter, the Shah might still be in power. Yes, Whit’s existence causes weird stuff to happen, as we’ll see in a moment.)

We also know, due to Jason Whittaker appearing in the first Last Chance Detectives radio drama, that a Gulf War happened in the AIO-verse—not necessarily, however, our Gulf War. It’s probable that Rakistan was formed in the immediate aftermath, but we’ll get to that soon enough.
The EU probably also has a spine in the AIO-verse, which means that the Balkan Wars might not have been as bad as they were, and might have acted as a further unifying factor for the continent.

Further, the USA didn’t mess things up nearly as bad in Latin America or Africa as it did IRL, as it was much less inclined to back dictators simply because they mouthed words about anti-Communism—due, once again, to Whit.

Meanwhile, as we know, the USA fought a war with Rakistan (with a lot of help), and occupied it—and, for all we know, is still occupying it, although the fact that it hasn’t been talked about outside of two episodes indicates that it went considerably smoother than our world’s invasion and occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan. However, as demonstrated by the Green Ring Conspiracy and the Labyrinth, international terrorism and crime are still significant problems.

As to the more adversarial relations, Vladimir Putin is the President of Russia, as he was in our timeline. However, as we’ll see in a bit, the USA and Russia are probably closer in this timeline than in real life. On the other hand, due to events described below, the United States has a much more strained relationship with the UN, as well as the fact, in the AIO-verse, the UN is a few black helicopters short of being the Antichrist’s vehicle to assume ultimate power.

III. The USA

To begin with, in this timeline, it is Bill Clinton who orders the invasion of Rakistan, rather than George W. Bush, as both of the episodes (“Room Enough for Two” and “A Lamb’s Tale”) that mention the invasion occur during the period when Liz Horton was one of the main characters. Fill in the blanks on why, but oil is probably still very important in the AIO-verse, and a single power controlling the Iraqi and Iranian oil fields and threatening the Saudi and Kuwaiti fields would be, frankly, a major threat to world security. Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if Pakistan and Russia got in on it, along with the USA and the European Union. Throw in the fact that the country’s rulers were almost certainly tyrannical, and you have a recipe for a multilateral intervention.

Culturally, Whit’s computer genius jump-started the Information Revolution and the related technology research, which is why people have smartphones in the year 2000. This also kickstarted things like the gay rights movement, due to the Internet’s power to bring scattered groups together and speed up the development of social movements. On the other hand, whatever company Wooton Bassett is writing Powerboy for is a heavy competitor with DC and Marvel.

Also, Firefly will last at least two seasons.

Monica Lewinsky and Whitewater were also far more damaging to Bill Clinton in the AIO timeline, due to the earlier rise of the Internet, and the scandals arising around the Andromeda Incident probably sunk Al Gore’s attempt to take the Democratic nomination. Meanwhile, George W. Bush’s college antics also got thrown up on the Web, which sunk his candidacy. As a result, the 2000 presidential campaign was between Joe Lieberman and John McCain. McCain won.

There was also no September 11 attack in 2001, although the US-EU-Russia-Pakistan is still occupying the territories formerly known as Rakistan. This is probably because the Rakistani government killed off Osama bin-Laden and al-Qaeda in order to create room for terrorist groups they could control, not that it did them much good. It should be noted that the occupation is going considerably better than the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan did in real life, as there are fewer suppliers for arms to insurgent groups, Clinton invaded the area having learned about how to run foreign policy (while, IRL, Bush invaded before he learned the ropes), and the USA also had a lot more help. It is anticipated that McCain will win a second term, but there are rumors about a state senator from Illinois prepping for a run in 2008…

IV. Odyssey

The town itself is in the middle of a transition phase, symbolized by the election of Margaret Faye to the mayorship of the town. Tom Riley (RIP) was a small-town mayor at his core, and saw the transitions induced by the rise of the Internet (moved along by Whit’s nearly supernatural computer genius) coming, which included Odyssey growing as businesses pulled operations from the high property taxes of Chicago and telework started to become something that people did. Realizing that he did not want to oversee this transition, he stepped down from the position and retired to devote his life to his farm, and, later, the Timothy Center.

In other words, the place was still small enough to be eligible for “Best Small Town in America” in 1999, but it would probably find it very difficult to convince such a contest that it was eligible at the present time—say around 2002.

But, let’s get to the stuff that’s really important, shall we? Let’s face it, Odyssey has a lot of weird stuff around, and most of it is centered around John Avery Whittaker in one way or another.

To start with the obvious, the Imagination Station is four or five orders of magnitude better than even the best computer commercially available in the early 1990s. Full virtual reality, entire worlds created down to the authentic smells—forget just the early ‘90s, that’s at least two or three orders of magnitude better than can be done now. We also know that Whit is very closely tied to the intelligence community, and probably knows where a whole lot of bodies are buried—and probably buried some of them himself. And if he didn’t, Jason most certainly did. The man has a ruthless streak, make no mistake about it.

This explains why Campbell County Community College ends up playing host to some of the experimentation being done in the Novacom saga by the government—it’s out of the way, no one would think to look there, and in case something goes wrong, it’s also right next door to one of the scientific geniuses of the age, who is also extremely patriotic and can be counted upon to both fix the problem and keep his mouth shut.

This is probably also a good chunk of the reason why Eugene ended up in town and why he stayed—when he couldn’t get into college, being a bit young, he was probably steered towards Odyssey so A. Whit could keep an eye on him (this was almost certainly done without Whit’s knowledge) and B. he would be close by to assist in research projects when necessary. The government is presently not pleased with Eugene’s current life choices. Whit is, however, and that’s what’s actually important.

Anyway, the point is that Odyssey is well on its way to becoming a small city—think more Tuscaloosa or Laramie than Mayberry—Campbell County Community College is basically an adjunct of Area 51, the place is undergoing an economic boom, and it’s all because of John Avery Whittaker.

Where is this going? No idea. But the best is yet to come.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:03 pm 
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This is a really cool in-depth post on this and it makes a LOT of sense.

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 Post subject: Re: Odyssey Time
PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2019 7:08 pm 
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TigerShadow wrote:
so my history/poli-sci-double-major older brother wrote this treatise. i agree with everything except that tom riley is dead, because rather than die tom riley is an immortal cryptid and that's the tea. anyway.


now that you say that i'm realizing you're totally right ksdlfjdsjf

ALSO I love this. I'd love to hear about how Odyssey's history fits in with our timeline's.

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