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Hitch-hiker's Guide to the Galaxy: The Original Radio Scripts

4.54  ·  Rating details ·  1,559 ratings  ·  58 reviews
The legendary BBC series did indeed push back the barriers of radio comedy, and in so doing so spawned records, books, a stage production, a TV series, a computer adventure game, even a towel, and attracted a deluge of letters from curious audiences throughout the world.

To satisfy this curiosity, here are the twelve original radio scripts – Hitch-Hiker as it was originally
Paperback, First Edition, 249 pages
Published October 1985 by Pan Books
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4.54  · 
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 ·  1,559 ratings  ·  58 reviews

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Ian Lepine
Feb 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I expected these scripts to be exactly like the books, but was pleasantly surprised. I only read them to be a thorough Hitchhiker's Guide enthusiast, I did not expect to find new plots, characters, and yes, even Guide entries.
These are absolutely marvellous and hilarious beyond what the Geneva Convention would approve.
Zoe's Human
May 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lt, beloved
You really are missing out on part of the Hitchhiker experience if you haven't read this. There are (as per usual) bits that aren't in any other form of the story. Some of my favorite bits are from these scripts that weren't actually even in the radio show since they were cut. :D
Chris Chinchilla
Dec 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

25th Anniversary Edition of the scripts that launched a billion quips.

March 1978 saw the first ever transmission of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" on BBC Radio 4; the beginning of a cult phenomenon. This 25th Anniversary edition of the scriptbook includes a previously unpublished Hitchhiker script, 'Sheila's Ear'; a new introduction by producer Geoffrey Perkins; and a Who's Who of all those involved in the radio series.

As well as all the new material, of course there are the twelve

I shall never forget sitting on the school coach home one day, with my friend Becky telling me about this absolutely brilliant new radio programme on BBC Radio 4. So, although I’d missed the first episode, I caught the second, and immediately became completely and utterly hooked. I hadn’t been much of a radio listener before that, but here was a series that had everything: the well-paced plot was imaginative yet believable, well-acted, very funny, and the sound effects were absolutely fantastic. ...more
Sep 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I picked up a copy of The Original Hitchhiker Radio Scripts several months ago, about the same time I was re-listening to the show tapes. I finished reading thru this just in time for the movie.

Arthur Dent, an unremarkable human on an unremarkable planet in an unremarkable part of the galaxy, is swept up in a wholly remarkable adventure when his planet is destroyed to make way for an interstellar bypass. He is rescued by a writer for The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy; they in turn are rescue
Anthony Strawther
After reading a few plays by Stoppard and Sophocles, these Radio Scripts were quite a breeze-through!

It's great to find the beginning of a franchise that's spawned numerous incarnations (by the same, original author)--such as a television series, a movie, a five-book trilogy and a stage play--telling the same story in slightly different ways. Douglas Adams would write according to how the product would be presented; For TV he would re-write parts that would better translate (ie, could actually b
Friendly Bookworm
If you mention this book to your average British bookworm their eyes light up and they get super excited - similar sight when someones mentions Harry Potter to me. You can tell their are avid fans. In fact, this book is a prominent series in British popular culture, and as well as becoming a international phenomenon. This is just the first book in a 6 part series, it's got a radio show (thats actually how it started!), TV series, stage shows, video games, comic books and most recently a film sta ...more
Dion F
Mar 28, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy is the first of 5 books in the series by Douglas Adams
The novel features the disgruntled character of Arthur Dent an ordinary man with a rather bleak outlook on life.
That soon changed whence a long time friend, Ford Prefect reveals that the world is about to end and that he is in fact an alien who happens to be an expert at navigating the nooks and crannies of the galaxy. The book takes you through their various adventures throughout the galaxy.
The characte
TheIron Paw
A very good read. Not only do we get to relive our favourite scenes in this weird galaxy of ours, but we get an inside look at how the radio programme was made. The sections detailing how sound effects were produced was particularly interesting, as were the details about the development of the storyline (did you know that Marvin, the paranoid android, wasn't originally meant to be a steady character?).
Worth reading, if you can find it.
James Cridland
May 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I never listened to the full series; and the radio scripts are interesting not just because of the deviation of the plot line from the books, but also for the notes from Geoffrey Perkins about how the programme was actually made. I can't help think that it must have been a nightmare to make.
Matt Welch
Mar 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
IT is a funny way to deliver a otherwise serious storyline
Joseph Ozias
Jan 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I technically listened to these rather than read them, but I own the book; this script is hilarious and just what I expect from Adams.
Roots! Many many many changes in the later versions, but this is (close to) the start of it all.
Peter Clegg
Jan 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was great to read the origins of the books. A lot of this was in the books but I don't think all of it is.
Apr 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel
A pleasant read. The usual amusing style of writing. And I have enjoyed the notes at the end of each chapter.
Ian Wood
Sep 22, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: douglas-adams
I have tried to get into radio comedy at various times. I spent many an hour trying to discover what was funny about the Goon Show as to me it just sounded like allot of man talking in silly voices. I had discovered Hitch Hikers through the TV show and had subsequently read all the Hitch Hiker novels and thought Douglas Adams the greatest writer I’d ever read.

And then, one Christmas, nearly two thousand years after one man had been nailed to a tree for saying how great it would be to be nice to
Ben Babcock
I first fell in love with h2g2 through the books, then the movie, and finally these radio scripts--I'm too young to have ever heard the original radio series. I tried listening to the BBC "Quaternary" phase, but it just wasn't the same.

Reading the scripts can never fully approximate the feeling of a radio show, of course. From what I've read of it, the entire affair was zany. At times, apparently, the end of the episode wasn't even written before they began recording the beginning. This sort of
I love this. It's fantastic to have the original radio scripts and be able to read them at any time. I have done so on many an ocassion. And I directed the Infinite Improbability Missle into Whale chase scene for a directing class because of this book. Huzzah! Um... Yeah, it's basically a must have if you want to have the perfect Hitchhiker's Guide Collection but it's not needed unless you're a superfan. And if you choose not to get a copy tell me where I can find another one. Just in case. Also ...more
Jul 22, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor, sci-fi
Basic Plot: Arthur Dent is rescued from Earth just as it is about to be destroyed.

I stumbled across this strange gem of a book when I was in high school. Being involved with the school radio station, I was looking for something to do as a project for a radio competition and found this book. Previous to this discovery, I hadn't known that Adams had originally created The Hitchhiker's Guide as a radio series before it was a novel. It blew my mind. There are some significant differences between the
Jan 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2009
I feel like I got this book from my mom's friend who was throwing it out or something. That is nuts. I will probably never get tired of this book... I'm enough of a Hitchhiker's nerd that it's fascinating to me to see the same jokes and ideas in different permutations or layered with new ones, and to see how the material originally functioned. The novel series, especially considering the later books, is a lot darker than the radio show (really!), but even the loopier material is going somewhere ...more
Toby Paradis
May 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book isn't for everyone. For example, people who own the CDs of the radio plays, or someone who read the series, thought, 'that was cute,' and never thought about it again. However, for diehard fans, this is a must have. It is notable a being one of, if not the only versions of the story that is exactly like another version. (Well, mostly) It also provides behind-the-scenes reminiscences from Geoffrey Perkins and Douglas Adams and details of changes made to each script. Plus a bonus lost sc ...more
Mar 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Since I was first introduced to Hitchhiker's through the BBC miniseries (which follows the radio script faithfully, and even has most of the voice talent on as actors), I have far more pleasant nostalgia attached to the lo-fi, confusing, not-quite-logical journey of the radio serials than I do the polished and (mostly) coherent plots of the novels. This collection of the original scripts contains lines cut from the script, as well as notes on each episode by Douglas himself.
May 01, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Anyone who has compared versions would, I think, agree, that the best expression of the Hitchhiker's universe is the original BBC radio productions. One should have that to listen to, but sometimes you're in a reading mood. These scripts are a great alternative. They are different enough from the novels that you want both (if this is the kind of thing you like), yet pleasantly reminiscent of both the books and the radio show. We will not speak of the recent so-called film.

Jul 11, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
I mean, at the end of the day, its just the scripts, so you might as well listen to the radio series supported by all the wonderful sounds. Still, this copy is autographed by Douglas Adams (at the Sydney Dymocks store I think in 1987. The signature is a terrible scrawl, and after the long wait, he seemed to be completed disengaged and not at all happy to be there - so hardly a great fan moment).
Oct 30, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Note to self: Ford is better in the books.


"Contrary to what you might believe, completely different from the books of the same name. New characters, new plots, new excuses to read out-loud in a British accent. In short, lots of fun, definitely recommended to anyone with a sense of humour."
Sep 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love the radio series of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and these scripts just add to it.

The descriptions of the sound effects are hilarious.
Jun 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After watching the TV show and reading the first 3 books of the H2G2 trilogy (the last 2.5 weren't out yet), I had to read the radio scripts. This is where the whole thing started. Fascinating to see how it evolved. And this book finally answered that nagging question: "Who in the world is Rula Lenska?"
Murray Writtle
May 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone living or dead only for tax purposes
Where would you like me to start quoting? Tell me when you've had enough...

Sorry I am incapable of giving a reasoned review of this work of genius. If you don't get it then no words of mine are going to make a difference. There should be a copy in every hotel room. There should be a radio channel permanently broadcasting the series on a continual loop. Etc.
Keith Jones
Sep 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Just finished re-reading the original Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy radio scripts on Kindle. The scripts are so much better than the book. After having listened to the original radio show and read the script book, the novelization is really kind of dry and boring. So read the scripts; they're a lot better.
Katie Lynn
I voraciously read anything pertaining to Hitchhiker's Guide, so it was interesting to see the different versions of the same story. The books, the radio scripts, the miniseries, the video game, the movie...
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Douglas Noël Adams was an English author, comic radio dramatist, and musician. He is best known as the author of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series. Hitchhiker's began on radio, and developed into a "trilogy" of five books (which sold more than fifteen million copies during his lifetime) as well as a television series, a comic book series, a computer game, and a feature film that was co ...more
“What to do if you find yourself stuck in a crack in the ground underneath a giant boulder you can't move, with no hope of rescue. Consider how lucky you are that life has been good to you so far. Alternatively, if life hasn't been good to you so far, which given your current circumstances seems more likely, consider how lucky you are that it won't be troubling you much longer.” 939 likes
“Arthur Dent: What happens if I press this button?
Ford Prefect: I wouldn't-
Arthur Dent: Oh.
Ford Prefect: What happened?
Arthur Dent: A sign lit up, saying 'Please do not press this button again.”
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