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The Hitchhikers Guide started as a radio series, then several books. In the 1980s a fairly poor TV series was made of the first radio series - the transition did not work particularly well. Finally there was the ultimate insult to the writing skills and imagination of Douglas Adams that really awful film that should be buried in lead lined concrete.
This is the second radio series of the Hitch Hikers guide written by Douglas Adams. In my opinion it is just as good as the first and it does, like the first series did, parody real life in its descriptions of government red tape and big corporations and as always overly 'by the book' officials. Ok so the second series does not exactly follow on seamlessly from the first and some of the ways of linking the new story to the original series are a bit far fetched even for hitchhikers guide but after that the humour which the first series was loved for soon begins to shine through
Brief plot points:
The editing and updating of the electronic book - The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy continues. Yet again events conspire to make sure that Ford Prefect, who is supposed to be doing most of the editing, gets very little work done.
Whilst in the first series the hapless 'heroes' were trying to discover the answer to the question about life the universe and everything and found the answer was 42 which was not exactly a lot of help as they then had to find the ultimate question. Here they need to find just who is running everything, who exactly is in charge of the universe. Why is s/he making all these decisions. It can't be Zaphod Beeblebrox - President of the Intergalactic Empire. After all, that would be far too easy.
With clones and 'anti-clones' to contend with along with Zaphod being chased by the 'frogstar fighters' in order to put him into 'the total perspective vortex' and the 'shoe event horizon' problem to solve it's no wonder that they never really get the job done.
Some of the main characters:
'The Book' (Peter Jones) - This takes the part of the narrator of the series. Giving a running background information on just what is going on in the universe.
Arthur Dent (Simon Jones) - A very ordinary earthman who was originally rescued in the first series from planet earth before it was destroyed to make way for a hyperspace by-pass.
Ford Prefect (Geoff McGivern) - An alien from somewhere close to beetlejuce. He arrived on earth some years ago to research for the update of the hitchhikers guide.
Zaphod (Mark Wing-Davey) - A two headed alien who is the 'intergalactic President' an inflated ego and a constant wish to be seen as sub zero cool are just two of his habits which annoy his fellow travellers - and everyone else who meets him.
Marvin (Stephen Moore) - The manically depressed robot. For Marvin everything is awful especially the pain in all the diodes down his left side, which no-one ever does anything about.
I do find it difficult to comment on the acting skills, after all we only have their voices to go on. However, the lines are all delivered very well and there is no 'wooden' performancies.
Adam's writing, as with the first series, is superb whilst some of the humour is perhaps a little dated I still find it funny every time I listen to it. Whether it is Zaphods over inflated ego and delusions or grandeur or Marvin's constant complaining about everything to everyone (what exactly do you do with a manically depressed robot?) or even for that matter Arthur Dent being the ultimate pessimist. This really is well worth listening to as the humour works on so many levels.
This is currently available from Amazon for £10.99