Podcast Suggestion: Gom Jabbar

I regularly listen to a few podcasts, and since it’s not easy to find interesting and well made ones, why not recommend some of those here on the blog? I already did that with You Must Remember This, Radio Morpork, and InvestiGates, today’s post is dedicated to…

Gom Jabbar is the title of a podcast launched in April 2020 by two true fans of Dune, the saga written by Frank Herbert and whose universe was then expanded by his son Brian and other authors. The two hosts of the podcast are called Abu and Leo, they are great friends, and their knowledge of the world of Dune is truly impressive.

There are already quite a few posts dedicated to Dune here on the blog: I wrote about the first book, its sequel Dune Messiah, the films by David Lynch and Denis Villeneuve, and I intend to write about the other four books of the original saga. This should prove beyond any doubt how aligned I am with the good Abu and Leo about Herbert’s saga, right?

What is Gom Jabbar about? It’s about the many aspects of Dune, of course! The interesting thing is that Abu and Leo prepare each episode very well (they have already recorded and published almost fifty of those) by studying the books by Frank and Brian Herbert, Willis Everett McNelly’s Dune Encyclopedia, and also taking elements from the HBO series and the movies. For example, two of the first episodes are dedicated to the story that precedes the events narrated in the first book of the saga and which for us represents a hypothetical future… and there are thirty thousand years of history! It’s an interesting excursus because it makes us understand how different the world of the Atreides and the Harkonnen can be, although naturally inspired by the current world (or, rather, the world in which Herbert lived almost sixty years ago).

A key feature of the podcast is that from the outset it’s clear which episodes contain spoilers about Dune’s books and which ones are spoiler free. Personally, if it weren’t so I wouldn’t have listened to any episode! Instead I was able to enjoy all the ones without spoilers without any problem, and also those with spoilers on books that I’ve already read.

There are two great strands of Gom Jabbar episodes. The first includes the episodes focusing on the individual elements of the world of Dune such as spice, weapons, animals, technology, some secondary characters, the various factions… the list is already very long in all cases they contain a lot of surprising information, and I mean surprising even for those who have read the six books of the saga!

The second trend, which began in May 2021, is the Book Club: Abu and Leo have decided to re-read Dune and discuss the various parts as they go on reading, avoiding anticipating developments that take place in the following pages. Given the number of topics touched by Herbert in his books, such an in-depth analysis is anything but redundant and offers many ideas to think about.

And that’s it for now, as Gom Jabbar is a relatively young podcast that’s still in the making. I decided to dedicate a post to it because it’s really well made, despite being free, which means that all the work that goes into creating the episodes is totally voluntary. If you’re passionate about the world of Dune created by Frank Herbert, don’t miss Gom Jabbar, ciao!

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