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Radio Broadcast of O.W.'s War of the Worlds


chaya bat woof woof
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My Mom remembered hearing this in 1938?  At the time, because of the rise of Nazi Germany, many people were so fearful of invasion that they believed it was true.  Does anyone remember hearing it or a similar broadcast on radio?  Locally, one of my radio stations recreated it to make it relevant to our area.  Also heard Monkey's Paw either on Radio or in an Alfred Hitchcock TV show (read the book).

Hearing things read or letting people's imaginations work is much scarier than being graphic!

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If  I recall  it correctly, historians  have researched  this  event  and found out there was a  lot less panic than believed.

I have  an old   two LP album of  the broadcast  somewhere.  It was a  quite effective broadcast, even if  it didn't  inspire the

fright that urban legend has assigned  to it. 

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4 minutes ago, Vautrin said:

If  I recall  it correctly, historians  have researched  this  event  and found out there was a  lot less panic than believed.

I have  an old   two LP album of  the broadcast  somewhere.  It was a  quite effective broadcast, even if  it didn't  inspire the

fright that urban legend has assigned  to it. 

Yes the panic was very localize.

Nobody were more confused than the residents of Grover's Mills.

 

Machines, what machines?

24521dd43b7cdbc05dc236e03f77ccb2.jpg

 

If there were any Martians, they were the vandalizing rock throwing variety. ;)

 

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6 hours ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

My Mom remembered hearing this in 1938?  At the time, because of the rise of Nazi Germany, many people were so fearful of invasion that they believed it was true.  Does anyone remember hearing it or a similar broadcast on radio?  Locally, one of my radio stations recreated it to make it relevant to our area.  Also heard Monkey's Paw either on Radio or in an Alfred Hitchcock TV show (read the book).

Hearing things read or letting people's imaginations work is much scarier than being graphic!

War of the Worlds has been rebroadcast many times on radio.  It was originally broadcast as an episode of The Mercury Theatre on the Air anthology show, on CBS.  There were 22 episodes of the show, running from July to December 1938.   

It was a sustaining program, meaning it had no sponsor or advertising, and thus CBS foot the bill for production.  This practice was somewhat common in radio (a network would underwrite the cost at first, usually hoping to get a sponsor later.  At other times, a network would underwrite the cost of a show as a public service.  The practice continued in a more limited fashion (owing to the greater cost of making a TV program vs. radio) in the early days of TV, but disappeared by the 1960s.

The anthology program wasn't very popular, so there were probably few listeners that night nationally, but the notoriety of the Halloween episode of War of the Worlds got it a lot of attention and a sponsor (Campbell's Soup).   In December of that year, they started sponsoring the program, which ran for another 2 years or so.

 

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I remember it.  I also remember the first Detroit "hippie" rock FM station( the now long gone WABX FM- 99.5)  Used to play it every Halloween from '70 to '74.

I keep meaning to order a CD of the broadcast, but somehow it keeps slipping my doddering old mind.  ;) 

Sepiatone

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5 hours ago, hamradio said:

The only copy out there seems to be an old VHS recording.  

https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x7yorzr

Can't get any of the online video converters to work, one refuses citing Youtube violations. :(

 

There was a TV show about the  same topic and with  a similar name, but  it's in b&w  and  from the 1950s.

It  runs  about  an  hour. I  didn't bother watching  it  because the picture is  very poor.  

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On 10/31/2021 at 4:59 PM, Vautrin said:

If  I recall  it correctly, historians  have researched  this  event  and found out there was a  lot less panic than believed.

I have  an old   two LP album of  the broadcast  somewhere. 

There was a 2 lp set on Mercury released in 1970,it was rare,I have never seen it anywhere I just read a review then,I could never find it. Now it is on ebay sealed for $75,I think it is a fair price for a collector.

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3 hours ago, nakano said:

There was a 2 lp set on Mercury released in 1970,it was rare,I have never seen it anywhere I just read a review then,I could never find it. Now it is on ebay sealed for $75,I think it is a fair price for a collector.

I think I got mine around that time, maybe a few years  later. But  it's on the Evolution label. There is an interesting

brief essay by Howard  Koch about his writing of the radio  play in the gatefold. I haven't listened to it  in a while.

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