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The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy 

Arthur Dent and his friend Ford Prefect escape the destruction of Earth only to face incredible trials, tribulations and adventures in space and time.
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1  
1981  
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Adventure | Comedy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Mere seconds before the Earth is to be demolished by an alien construction crew, journeyman Arthur Dent is swept off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher penning a new edition of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy."

Director: Garth Jennings
Stars: Martin Freeman, Yasiin Bey, Sam Rockwell
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A documentary about the making of _Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, The (2005)_.

Stars: Garth Jennings, Martin Freeman, Zooey Deschanel
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A documentary looking at the making of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1981), including interviews with leading members of the cast and production team, behind-the-scenes footage and ... See full summary »

Director: Kevin Davies
Stars: Peter Jones, Alan J.W. Bell, Stella Elliott
Director: Dirk Maggs
Stars: Samantha Béart, Simon Jones, John Lloyd
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...  The Book 6 episodes, 1981
...  Arthur Dent 6 episodes, 1981
David Dixon ...  Ford Prefect 6 episodes, 1981
Sandra Dickinson ...  Trillian 5 episodes, 1981
Mark Wing-Davey ...  Zaphod Beeblebrox 5 episodes, 1981
Stephen Moore ...  Marvin / ... 5 episodes, 1981
David Learner ...  Marvin 4 episodes, 1981
David Tate ...  Eddie / ... 3 episodes, 1981
...  Vogon Captain 2 episodes, 1981
...  Slartibartfast 2 episodes, 1981
...  Newscaster 2 episodes, 1981
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Storyline

Arthur Dent is your average middle-class Briton. One day, while trying to prevent his house being destroyed to build a highway, his friend Ford Prefect whisks him away to the pub and explains that the Earth is about to be destroyed and they need to escape. Intergalactic, inter-time adventures ensue. Written by grantss

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Don't panic!


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Release Date:

30 October 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(6 episodes) | (2 parts) | (7 episodes) (original) | (6 episodes) (subsequent syndication) | (6 episodes)

Sound Mix:

| (video release)

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Trivia

EASTER EGG: On the Region 1 and Region 2 DVDs, disc 2, click "Outer Planets", then turn *on* the subtitles. Highlight "Deleted Scene from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Episode #1.2 (1981)", then go left, to show a "Don't Panic" icon in the upper left corner. Press Select to view the animated "computer display" shown on the Heart of Gold main screen. It shows, in order: a breakdown of the "sector ZZ9 Plural ZA" spatial reference; data about the improbability of rescuing Ford and Arthur; a comparison of the found planet to known parameters of the legendary Magrathea; tactical plots of the flight over Magrathea; readouts on the incoming missiles; and simulations of the missiles turning into a whale and bowl of petunias. Note that because this animation was solely intended as animated set dressing, it is completely silent with no sound effects or narration. See more »

Goofs

The person operating Zaphod's third arm can be seen on multiple occasions. See more »

Quotes

[repeated line]
Arthur Dent: So this is it... we're going to die!
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Crazy Credits

After the credits for episode 3, the voice of the book returns briefly to resolve which one of the characters sustained a bruised arm -- a question that had been raised earlier in the episode, but left unanswered because it was unimportant. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Men in Black II (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Journey of the Sorcerer
(title music)
Written by Bernie Leadon
Arranged by Tim Souster
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Classic British satire mixed with absurdist humour
16 July 2002 | by See all my reviews

In the early eighties Arthur Dent awakes to find the council is preparing to bulldoze his home to make way for a by-pass. Arthur is determined to sop them but is distracted by his friend Ford Prefect who is sure the world is about to be destroyed by the Vogons. Arthur is shocked to find that Ford is not from Gilford but really from another planet and that he is correct in his assertions. The two escape by hitching a ride on the Vogon ship and thus begins an adventure that will see them meet old friends and see places in new ways thanks to the guidance of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

Based on the radio show, this was what made Douglas Adams. The plot is pretty thin but is matched by the observations from the aforementioned book itself. The is allows one half of each show to be moving things forward and making the show actually go somewhere and for the other half to be absurdly funny. The story is good enough to be amusing by itself but with the sly wit of the guide taking swipes at things in a sideways fashion it becomes even better.

It is rarely laugh out loud funny, and I've yet to meet an American who gets the satire/wit of the thing (although there are some!). Simply because this is a witty thing rather than a silly, hilarious thing. The plot does require some leaps of faith as our characters escape death in several unlikely ways – but this is sci-fi and more importantly we always have the book to put it all in focus. The guide's comments show that the galaxy, like earth, is an insecure place that is really quite meaningless at the end of the day.

Jones is perfect as the book – he always sound slightly unbelieving of what he was saying, as if he was taken aback by the sheer amazement he was feeling! Simon Jones is likable as Arthur but I always found Dixon a little too cocky for Ford. Likewise I was never a real fan of Wing Davey but I must admit the two heads were good for the time. The rest of the cast are very good – but really the two Jones's are carrying the two separate elements of the show.

Overall those who know the books and the radio show will feel some material is missing, but really these 6 episodes cover the basic material very well and are very true to the source. The wit may go over the head of some people but this is absurd British wit of the finest sort.


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