Back in the 1970’s I heard an original radio play from the BBC called The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. I found it engaging and funny and couldn’t wait for the next week’s episode. Of course, it is now a book, a movie and a TV series. But the beginning was the radio show.
Early in 2020, a local theater company in my area, Back Alley Productions of Lafayette, GA, who run the Mars Theater, decided that since they cannot open their theater due to COVID-19 gathering restrictions, they would produce radio dramas using Zoom. Among the shows they’ve produced is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. When I found out about the production, I auditioned and landed the part of Arthur Dent.
This is a role that is almost too much fun. Arthur is an earthling who has been saved from the destruction of his planet by an alien — Ford Prefect — in order to make way for a new hyper-space bypass. What follows are Ford and Arthur’s adventures as they hitchhike — yes, I said hitchhike — their way through space discovering new things for the book, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. There is adventure, lots of comedy, and unbelievably improbable happenings.
You’ll find the episodes for these shows below. The oldest will be on the bottom. So, grab your towel and scroll to start your amazing space journey!
Episode 5: Fit the Fifth
Getting into Magrethea isn’t the hard part, it’s getting out alive. Our heroes meet their end against local galactic administrators in the Battle of Magrethea and think they’ve awakened in the afterlife. They have not perished after all; they have just taken a pit stop to their next meal at the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, with in-house entertainment brought to you by Max Quordlepleen. She is preparing for her lovely showing of the final moments of all existence preceeded by a grand speech from the Great Prophet Zarquon. Will our heroes be able to escape this diner? Does Zarquon hold the Answer of Life, the Universe, and Everything? Where’s Marvin?! Find out none of these questions and less in this special New Year’s dinner celebration at the Restaurant at the End of the Universe!
Episode 4: Fit the Fourth
After finally arriving on the mythical planet of Margrethea, Arthur finds himself in Slartibartfast’s office. This isn’t your regular drab 9-5 locale. A super intelligent AI named Deep Thought is at the core of a grand debate concerning The Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything. Elsewhere on this enigmatic planet we come to a delightful dinner with the unlikely commissioners of the newly rebuilt Earth. Will our heroes be able to endure this rigorous metaphysical dilemma of creation? Who paid for the new Earth? Find out on this perplexing episode of the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy!
Episode 3: Fit the Third
The Heart of Gold Spaceship is on course to the Legendary Planet of Magrethea – where worlds are created. However, this long barren planet still holds secrets and traps. Will our team of humans, robots, and Aliens from throughout the galaxy be able to endure? Just who is Snartiblartfast, anyway? Find out in this installment of this far out space comedy!
Episode 2: Fit the Second
Our unlikely heroes have escaped earth and have found their way into the Heart of Gold! This one of a kind ship defies reality and probability allowing it to travel at improbable speeds! Aboard this vessel is an array of daring crew members including Trillian, the master physicist, Zaphod, the charismatic socialite, and a whole slew of sentient computers! Will our heroes achieve the improbable or will they be just another pair of lost hitchikers doomed to roam forever?
Episode 1: Fit the First
Can our local hapless hero catch a break?! Meet Arthur Dent, your ordinary Englishman who would love nothing more than to slip out of his house for a quick drink at the pub. Unfortunately, it seems Mister Prosser of the local city council has other plans and our dear Mr.Dent’s house is scheduled for demolition. By a strange cosmic coincidence, it would seem the earth has also been scheduled for demolition by the bureaucratic arm of a galactic empire, The Vogons. A notoriously uptight, unpleasant, but efficient folk, who also have the most atrocious taste in poetry in the entire universe. Join us for a comically absurd trip through the cosmos!