The Soyuz Files

  • Director, Writer: Spencer Devlin Howard
  • Created by: Spencer Devlin Howard
    Nathan Turner
  • Producer: The West
  • Cast: Spencer Devlin Howard
    Claire Kaplan
    Nathan Turner
    Cate Scott Cambpell
  • Featured on: planetary Featured on Planetary Radio, hosted by Mat Kaplan, produced by Bill Nye's Planetary Society.
  • See More: Actor Director Editor Web Series Writer

What if the Soviets won the Space Race?

The Soyuz Files is a six-part radio play podcast set in an alternate history. The Soviet Union lands on the moon first, kickstarting a mad rush to uncover the conspiracies surrounding the event before an embarrassed United States escalates the Cold War into a world war.

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Part 1:

The Space Race

November 1, 1968

Breaking news! The United States has lost the Space Race to the Soviet Union. On October 31, 1968, Americans received transmissions from Cosmonauts on the Lunar surface. Jack Schechter, host of WNYX’s news program The Friday Review, speaks with Natalia Gromyko, Soviet diplomat, to discuss what this means for geopolitics and the future of the Cold War.

Download file | Duration: 13:42 | Size: 20.15M

Part 2:

Cosmonauts at the White House

March 7, 1969

The Cosmonauts who landed on the Moon finish their world tour with a White House dinner. On the other side of the Iron Curtain, a Soviet rocket scientist named Nikolai has been sending postcards to Jacob, an American working at NASA. He brings the postcards to Jack at The Friday Review to find out why Nikolai has disappeared.

Download file | Duration: 18:15 | Size: 26.13M

Part 3:

The Land of Righteousness

March 14, 1969

Jack seeks Natalia’s help in locating Nikolai, but she has a word of warning to share with the idealistic journalist. Meanwhile, in the midst of the dismantling of NASA’s Apollo Program, the Nixon administration doubles down on defense.

Download file | Duration: 13:07 | Size: 18.22M

Part 4:

To Moscow!

March 21, 1969

Broadcast from the snowy streets of Moscow, Jack teams up with Soviet reporter Igor to try and locate Nikolai. What they find instead is even more troubling: a ransacked home, Moscow police hot on their tail, and a deepening of Cold War paranoia.

Download file | Duration: 13:23 | Size: 19.19M

Part 5:

Diogenes Will Know

April 4, 1969

“Diogenes will know.” “Not enough.” The cryptic notes Nikolai left in the margin of a top secret document take Jack from Moscow to the Cosmodrome itself, halfway across the continent, to investigate the Soviet Space Program from within.

Download file | Duration: 21:45 | Size: 30.1M

Part 6:


July 18, 1969

Four months after the world learned the truth of the Soviet Moon landing, Jack returned to The Friday Review following his leave of absence to file one last report amid growing global conflict.

Download file | Duration: 10:13 | Size: 16.48M