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Return to Gilead

Return to Gilead

By Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock
A review podcast for Down Gilead Lane, hosted by longtime audio drama fans Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock. We’re going episode by episode through this amazing family audio drama to see what makes it one of the greatest!

Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
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The Season 2 Finale in Review, Part 3 (ft. Hannah Matlock)
For the final part of the Down Gilead Lane Season 2 finale, Hannah Matlock joins again to look back on another set of thought-provoking episodes. Hannah, Ryan, and Michael talk about some of the same themes as in the last two episodes from Hannah’s perspective, along with a discussion of the culmination of Maya Richter’s journey to salvation. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver, Ryan Matlock, and Hannah Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
20:34
May 16, 2022
Because of Roly-Poly
For this bonus segment, a couple lines from the second part of the Season 2 finale review just couldn’t seem to come out right. So, naturally, they’re here for you to enjoy! Plus, Ryan getting ambushed by another arthropod, and a random discussion about when April Fool’s Day 2023 is. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
04:02
May 14, 2022
The Season 2 Finale in Review, Part 2
Last time, Ryan and Michael covered the positives of the Down Gilead Lane Season 2 finale. In the second part of the review, we turn to a few negatives: the lack of story and strange messaging of Justin’s plot in “Theories,” and the ongoing question of Grace’s prerogatives in “Connections.” Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
24:25
May 13, 2022
The Season 2 Finale in Review, Part 1
We’ve reached the finale of Season 2! This podcast starts the first of three parts of a discussion of three episodes of Down Gilead Lane – episode 23 (2-10): “The List,” episode 24 (2-11): “Theories,” and episode 25 (2-12): “Connections.” To start off this long review, Michael and Ryan highlight some of the better moments from the episodes, such as the tasteful introduction of the Richter parents, how Michael Morrison’s competitive spirit makes an excellent theme, and the meaning of Jesus’ parables on finding the lost. Also, a lot of version differences! Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
21:27
May 11, 2022
“The Giving Spree” in Review
References abound! In this podcast, Michael and Ryan have a blast reviewing episode 22 (2-9) of Down Gilead Lane, “The Giving Spree.” The two co-hosts talk about intersecting and likeable characters and storylines, contrasts between this episode and a show on Odyssey, using the word “superfluous,” and the economics of Grace’s lemonade stand. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
22:37
May 09, 2022
“All 4 One” in Review
It’s a big episode for Maya Richter this time on Down Gilead Lane, as Ryan and Michael review episode 21 (2-8), “All 4 One.” Aside from the massive character development for a former antagonist, this episode also shows contrasts between the Morrisons and Richter families, a competent incorporation of a real-life ministry, how a heart for service changes people, and still more hints about Grace Andrews’ past. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
18:13
May 06, 2022
“Bo-ring” in Review
Things are starting to unravel in Michael and Ryan’s review of episode 20 (2-7) of Down Gilead Lane, “Bo-ring.” In this discussion of a more laid-back episode, the two reviewers bring up Timmy and Michael Morrison’s consistent writing, foreshadowing of the underlying plot, comparisons and contrasts with other episodes, and an unnerving retcon for Mr. Key. Plus, feedback from two surprise listeners! Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
18:48
May 04, 2022
“When Push Comes to Love” in Review (ft. Hannah Matlock)
It’s the halfway point of Season 2! Michael and Ryan discuss the proper introduction of Ms. Kopek in episode 19 (2-6) of Down Gilead Lane, “When Push Comes to Love.” Hannah Matlock comes on again to talk about her experience with abusive managers at work and how the episode’s advice may fall short. Also, Ryan and Michael explore what it means to “turn the other cheek,” the Cinderella parallel, and good sound design. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Special thanks: Hannah Matlock Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
21:18
May 02, 2022
“Whine Not” in Review
Do you know the best way to cook brussels sprouts? Well, you will after this review of episode 18 (2-5) of Down Gilead Lane, “Whine Not”! Co-hosts Michael and Ryan talk about the first plot that Michael’s lukewarm about, Haley’s internal resolution to her internal conflict, name brands in Coleraine, the tragic disappearance of the storyline of Haley’s bugs, and Freddy Falstaff getting dunked on. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
18:57
April 29, 2022
“The Cheater” in Review
On today’s episode, the Freddy Falstaff special extended edition (not really), Ryan and Michael explore the topic of cheating and enabling in episode 17 (2-4) of Down Gilead Lane, “The Cheater.” The two hosts bring up whether Freddy is or isn’t actually a good character, how to write characters who aren’t Christians and how Gilead does it well, Tiffany’s terrible lying, and contrasts between hosts Jacob and Zach. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
20:44
April 27, 2022
“Truth and Lies” in Review
We’re fixin’ the leafblower! In this review, Michael and Ryan discuss a great thematic study of telling the truth in love in episode 16 (2-3) of Down Gilead Lane, “Truth and Lies.” Among the subjects talked about are how this scenario is perfect for Timmy at his age, great acting from Nathan Hekman, different ways Beth Culp uses Mary Morrison to resolve conflicts, and the interpretations of Grace’s advice to Michael about Maya’s hurts. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
20:48
April 25, 2022
“No Strings Attached” in Review
The story between Brooke and Becca continues, and Michael and Ryan have thoughts on it in the review of episode 15 (2-2) of Down Gilead Lane, “No Strings Attached.” The podcasting pair discusses Becca’s rationale behind her behavior, learning lessons from the younger characters, and how young Brooke and Becca are severely underrated. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
22:18
April 22, 2022
“Pride Comes Before the Fall Festival” in Review
It’s the start of Season 2! Ryan and Michael kick off the beginning of a new season with a review of episode 14 (2-1): “Pride Comes Before the Fall Festival.” Besides a clever segway from the previous season, discussion is sparked on the introduction of Rebecca Taylor and her history with Brooke, John’s surprising lesson that he learns from Haley, and the “other side of the desert” humor. Plus, an Apple Podcasts review! Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
21:54
April 20, 2022
An Interview with Executive Producer Randy Hekman
For the first interview on Return to Gilead, executive producer Randy Hekman joins Michael and Ryan to talk about the early days of Down Gilead Lane. Randy shares about the origins of the show, how he found the original writers, actors, and crew, and the process of making a God-centered family drama filled with meaningful themes. Links (and buy Randy’s book!): https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
26:47
April 19, 2022
The Season 1 Finale in Review, Part 3 (ft. Hannah Matlock)
Hannah Matlock (wife of Ryan) joins the crew of Return to Gilead for the final part of the review of the last three episodes in Down Gilead Lane Season 1. Hannah, Michael, and Ryan discuss Hannah’s history with the show, her thoughts on Grace’s secrets, how cooperative cleaning breeds controversy, and the grace given and received by the Morrisons in this finale. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver, Ryan Matlock, and Hannah Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
24:15
April 18, 2022
The Season 1 Finale in Review, Part 2
The discussion takes a sudden turn to a deep debate in the second part of Michael and Ryan’s review of the Down Gilead Lane Season 1 finale, all hinging on a few tough questions: Why is Grace hiding the truth? Is she covering for a wrongdoing? And could we have avoided the whole opening saga of Gilead if she had revealed what happened? Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
24:60
April 15, 2022
The Season 1 Finale in Review, Part 1
It’s the end of Season 1! This episode is the first part of three in a discussion of the finale of Down Gilead Lane Season 1 – episode 11 (1-11): “See No Evil, Hear No Evil,” episode 12 (1-12): “It’s All about Me,” and episode 13 (1-13): “Like a Good Neighbor.” In this part, Ryan and Michael discuss the great way these episodes deal with fear and obedience, the continuing great relationship between Brooke and Luke, and the different ways each of the Morrisons encounter Grace. Plus, some feedback from Brendon and two Apple Podcasts reviews! Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
24:60
April 13, 2022
Foreshadowing in “The Lonely Ranger” … and the Return of the Ant!
Spoiler warning! A few points brought up in the recording of the review of “The Lonely Ranger” ended up referencing Season 8 of Down Gilead Lane, so we’re putting them in a bonus episode for fans who have heard that season! Plus: Ryan’s gi-ant is back. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
04:14
April 12, 2022
“The Lonely Ranger” in Review
Justin Morrison takes center stage in Michael and Ryan’s review of episode 10 (1-10) of Down Gilead Lane, “The Lonely Ranger.” Aside from the strangest child acting in the first season, the two co-hosts highlight how well depression is handled on Gilead, some fantastic sound design by Steve O’Dell, and Michael Morrison’s gut imbalance. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
21:08
April 11, 2022
“Of Mike and Fin” in Review
There are three Michaels on this podcast! Ryan and his aforementioned co-host dive into episode 9 (1-9) of Down Gilead Lane, “Of Mike and Fin.” In this review, Michael and Ryan talk about Michael Morrison’s arc in one episode, a Biblical parable parallel, what video games shouldn’t sound like, and Beth Culp’s grand vision for Coleraine. Plus, some feedback from Michael (not LaFaver) and Brendon. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
21:12
April 08, 2022
“Sick of It” in Review
The review series of Season 1 continues with Michael and Ryan’s review of episode 8 (1-8) of Down Gilead Lane, “Sick of It.” Under the microscope this time are the comparisons between the themes of taming the tongue and the value of hard work, how Justin and Michael Morrison are (for Michael and Ryan) uncomfortably realistic, and how Mary Morrison gives a great counterexample to her sons’ concepts of work. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
18:29
April 06, 2022
Does “Rumor Has It” Promote Purity Culture? – An Extended Discussion
In this bonus episode, Michael and Ryan are delving deep into a single scene from “Rumor Has It,” in which John Morrison gives his daughter Brooke advice on dating. What does it mean to “give your heart away,” and how does the context of this episode relate to broader tenets of “purity culture”? Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
01:07:33
April 05, 2022
“Rumor Has It” in Review
The town of Coleraine is slowly expanding as Ryan and Michael review episode 7 (1-7) of Down Gilead Lane, “Rumor Has It.” The two fans talk about the introduction of Brad Smith, John’s advice to Brooke (in an abbreviated form), how Grace’s advice is different from the parents’, and the great platonic relationship between Brooke and Luke. Plus, some belated feedback from Lisa Rolfop? Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Special thanks: Hannah Matlock Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
23:35
April 04, 2022
“Food for Thought” in Review
Grace Andrews is here! Ryan and Michael have many good things to say about episode 6 (1-6) of Down Gilead Lane, “Food for Thought.” The two reviewers bring out the episode’s emphasis on avoiding one extreme or another in dealing with topics, along with whether or not Haley needed to fully learn her lesson and how Justin’s cooking failures have anything to do with the rest of the episode. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
19:54
April 01, 2022
“Brains vs. Brawn” in Review
The introduction of Grace is on the horizon in Michael and Ryan’s discussion of episode 5 (1-5) of Down Gilead Lane, “Brains vs. Brawn.” Among the topics discussed are Steve Wick’s music and how it affects Gilead, how natural conflicts weave in good themes, and lessons on stewardship and sibling comparisons. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
17:28
March 30, 2022
“Overtime” in Review
Moving along through Season 1, Michael and Ryan discuss episode 4 (1-4) of Down Gilead Lane, “Overtime.” Along with a small debate on parental neglect, they talk about the relationship between the two main plots, the beginning of Timmy and Mr. Key’s fishing ventures, and a few tidbits from John Morrison’s past. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Kids Ministries.
21:02
March 28, 2022
“The Unloveables” in Review, Part 2
In the second part of Michael and Ryan’s review of episodes 2 and 3 (1-2 and 1-3), “The Unloveables,” the two co-hosts bring up the meaning of Gilead and how even these first few episodes relate to it. Discussed along the way are Michael Morrison ships, how story structure mirrors the feelings of the listener, and good character development over the course of a single episode. Plus, some feedback from Emily, Brendon, and Austin. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
21:48
March 25, 2022
“The Unloveables” in Review, Part 1
The series continues as Michael and Ryan begin to discuss episodes 2 and 3 (1-2 and 1-3), “The Unloveables.” In part 1 of the review, they bring up how to write a good two-parter, handling conflicts and taking responsibility, and how multiple themes are represented in a seemingly simple script. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
22:43
March 23, 2022
“Meet the Morrisons” in Review
A journey in reviews begins as Michael and Ryan discuss episode 1 (1-1) of Down Gilead Lane, “Meet the Morrisons.” The two reviewers talk about the themes for kids and adults, early character building, and the gold standard for audio drama. Links: https://linktr.ee/returntogilead Credits Hosts: Michael LaFaver and Ryan Matlock Editing and music arrangement: Michael LaFaver Music post-production: Israel Ownbey Cover artwork: Bethany Burnett Return to Gilead is a review podcast based on episodes, logos and artwork, and music produced for and with permission from Keys for Kids Ministries.
21:50
March 21, 2022
Return to Gilead – Promo
Return to Gilead will begin March 21 on Anchor.fm/ReturnToGilead or anywhere podcasts are found.
00:34
March 19, 2022