Have a Happy Wellsian Halloween

No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man’s and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. With infinite complacency men went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over matter. It is possible that the infusoria under the microscope do the same. No one gave a thought to the older worlds of space as sources of human danger, or thought of them only to dismiss the idea of life upon them as impossible or improbable. It is curious to recall some of the mental habits of those departed days. At most terrestrial men fancied there might be other men upon Mars, perhaps inferior to themselves and ready to welcome a missionary enterprise. Yet across the gulf of space, minds that are to our minds as ours are to those of the beasts that perish, intellects vast and cool and unsympathetic, regarded this earth with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us. And early in the twentieth century came the great disillusionment.

Hello My Fellow Wellsians,

I would like to wish you all a very Happy Wellsian Halloween. In keeping with a very long tradition I always spend my Halloween’s eve listening to the infamous October 30th, 1938 Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds broadcast. This week marks the sixty-ninth anniversary of that legendary broadcast. Here are two great links that will direct you to sites where you can hear the famous broadcast using Real Player or download the entire broadcast direct to your computer.

The sites concerned are the official web site of the town of Grover Mills, New Jersey where Orson Welles staged the landing site of the Martian invasion of America, and from Jeff Rense comes a fantastic site with some really fascinating pictures depicting the Martian Invasion of New York City. I really like the scenes of the Martian Tripods over the New York City Skyline.

I would also like to direct your attention to three very Wellsian Internet Radio plays or webcasts very reminiscent of the old style dramas very popular in 1930s and 1940s in the United States. I am referring to the Science Fiction Channel’s Seeing Ear Theatre:

If you go to the archives section and click on Original Playhouse you will find the three very original Wellsian radio plays.

Orson the Alien is the untold story of the Orson Welles broadcast written by Terry Bisson, Brian Smith and George Zarr and, starring Star Trek’s Walter Koenig.

On October 30th, 1938 Orson Welles shocked the world with his faux “news” broadcast of an Alien invasion from mars; thousands of people believed the reports and streamed into the streets, panicked and screaming for their lives. Now, 60 years later, Seeing Ear Theatre asks the question, “What if two real aliens were listening to Welles’ historic broadcast? And what if they, too, believed the reports to be authentic and felt obliged to travel to Earth to help save us from the dreaded Martians? What then, Orson?

For some famous old time radio I would also like to direct you to a website about the famous Mercury Theatre.

Here is something else I just had to share with you: a version of an animated War of the Worlds which is absolutely Andersonsque.

Toyman Studios’ The War of the Worlds in Stop Motion Doll-o-Vision!

This is a full feature internet video clip of a Gerry Anderson (of Fireball XL 5 and Thunderbirds fame) style version of the War of the Worlds. They took the whole of the 1938 version of the Orson Welles infamous radio broadcast and created an Andersonsque animated full length presentation of it. Truly amazing and awesome to the max. Well worth watching again and again.

I hope you spend this Halloween enjoying these wonderful radio plays.

Bye for now,
Alex Michael Bonnici


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