Talk:The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy/Archive 1

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This archive page covers approximately the dates between 25 February 2002 and 3 July 2005.

Post replies to the main talk page, copying the section you are replying to if necessary. (See Wikipedia:How to archive a talk page.)

Please add new archivals to Talk:The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy/Archive03. Thank you. JohnDBuell | Talk 01:26, 12 July 2005 (UTC)

Old discussions

My edition of the book is titled "The More Than Complete Hitchhiker's Guide", and it also uses "Hitchhiker" consistently, as one word. Does the British version perhaps use two words? I note that the h2g2 web site also uses one word.

My copy of the novel has "Hitch Hiker" on the spine and "Hitch-Hiker" on the cover. My copy of the radio scripts has "Hitch-Hiker" on both cover and spine. Both are British editions. Since Douglas Adams was British, it seems logical to use the British version if that's why there's a difference. --Pinkunicorn

Yes, it's the British edition that has two words. There are also some differences between the American and British texts, one of them being rather major and involving a bad word. -- Stephen Gilbert

I made "Hitchhiker" before checking here. Douglas Adams' posthumously maintained Official Site says "Hitch Hiker" and seems to be as official as it gets. My bad.

STG: Can you provide details about the change? --Yooden

Sure. In book 3, at the flying party, Arthur meets an actor who won an award. In the British version, the award was for "The Most Gratuitous Use of the Word 'Fuck' in a Serious Screenplay". In the American edition, the word 'fuck' was replaced with 'Belgium', and about half a page was added explaining why Belgium was such a horribly taboo word everywhere except Earth. There are a few other differences too, mostly revolving around the difference between the American and British billion.

(gratuitous comment) "Now that DNA (as he is often referred) has passed on, we can know for certain that there will not be a 6th book in the series." The death of an author has not always prevented the extension of a series (examples: Robert Howard, Ian Fleming). -- RjLesch

Absolutely. He was actually working on a sixth book, so it may well be published. I've edited the article to reflect that. -- Stephen Gilbert

(less gratuitous comment) There was a short story, "Young Zaphod Plays it Safe", which appeared in an all-in-one volume collection of the first three books. I never read it, so I don't know -- was it folded into book 4 or 5, or is it a separate piece of work? --RjLesch

"Young Zaphod Plays it Safe" was never folded into the "trilogy", but remained a separate short story. -- Stephen Gilbert

42 (the meaning of life, the universe, and everything) should be mentioned somewhere... It will be... sjc

I've made a note on the page proper regarding the name ambiguity, and also a note of wikipedia's usage. Updates a few named references to match this.

Regarding the US differences? The Belgium joke was written for the radio series, and lifted directly into the US versions of the book. --User:Nemo

...42 reference inserted. --KamikazeArchon

Aside...back in the 1980's when I was a college student I had a Dymo label reading DON'T PANIC on my HP11C.

I was looking for a good "DON'T PANIC" sticker for my TI-83 graphing looks almost like a Guide should be, with all the little buttons and screen and everything...:) --dreamyshade

Removed from article. All American editions use single word "hitchhiker":

Yes, but that was never in question. British editions use "hitch hiker", and it is a British book. It's important to remember that Wikipedia aims to be an international encyclopedia, not an American one. --Stephen Gilbert

There is some ambiguity about the exact nomenclature of "Hitch Hikers". Should there be no space, a dash or a space between hitch and hiker? Similarly, should hikers be apostrophised? (hiker's). Most variants are formalised in print somewhere. Wikipedia currently uses Hitch Hikers (see Talk).

The Salmon of Doubt was to be Dirk Gently 3, not HHGG 6 -- according to that page at least. Tarquin

Why was it switched to no apostrophe before the s? Danny

According to my edition (the omnibus of volumes 1-4), it's
The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy
two words, singular Hiker. -- Tarquin 02:13 Jul 31, 2002 (PDT)

Hope this edit makes the whole thing look a bit nicer and read better. Don't intend to touch the Hitch Hiker's / Hitch-Hiker's / Hitchhiker's mess with a bargepole, since it's a horrible mess of redirects at the moment anyway. At least there's not a ton of subpages to grapple with. Thankful for small mercies, and all that... --AW

It has been adapted as a series of novels, as a television series and as a computer game, and as of 2003 there are still plans for a film version.

It has been noted that as of 2003 redirects to 2003. This does not mean that "as of 2003" and "as of 2003" amount to the same thing. All pages that link to as of 2003 are grouped together and labelled as such on 2003's what-links-here page. This helps distinguish them from 'genuine' links to 2003 (as in "Iraq was internationally isolated until the spring of 2003, when the US and UK invaded and removed the Ba'ath Party from leadership", to give the second example that comes to mind), and makes them easy to find should anyone go looking for pages with out-of-date information on.

Any questions?

-- Paul A 13:22 May 10, 2003 (UTC)

There's a story in The Register [1] about a likely revival of the radio series, picking up from where the last left off. HTH HAND. Phil 15:44, Nov 25, 2003 (UTC)

talk about the spelling of "Hitchhiker's"

Regarding the recent revisions "there and back again" on the spelling of "Hitchhiker's", my quick and dirty research this morning shows me that there has been quite a bit of inconsistency in the way it is spelled when you look at the radio transcript publications, the British book covers and the American book covers. The Douglas Adams website is even inconsistent in the spelling when you drill down to the underlying pages. What may be appropriate is to explicitly acknowledge these various spellings within the text of this article. That way we can eventually find a reference spelling for most of the text of the article, yet bring notice to the existance of other variations on the theme. Bevo 18:15, 3 Dec 2003 (UTC)

The BBC appears to use 'Hitchhiker' throughout. DJ Clayworth 18:19, 3 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Here's the final (snicker, snicker) word on the matter: the books and other witten materials are all terribly inconsistant about it (how appropriate), but DNA seems to have set the record straight (or firmly crooked) and decided on 'Hitchhiker'. I've added that to the existing note in the entry and provided the reference. --Spikey 19:49, 18 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Separate page for the series

What do you think of making separate pages for "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" and "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Trilogy", and having only the information about the first book on this page? Ausir 21:35, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I would suggest keeping this page as an overview of the whole "trilogy", and putting book 1 at "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (book)" - then in the future there could be pages for "HHGttG (radio)", "HHGttG (television)", "HHGttG (film)", "HHGttG (game)" and "HHGttG (rollercoaster)" ;) Sjorford 21:47, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Done: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (book). Ausir 22:54, 20 Feb 2004 (UTC)
The pages for the TV and radio series are works in progress. Would anyone like to tackle creation of a page for the stage shows? Did anyone SEE any of the stage shows (like the Ken Campbell ones from the late 1970s mentioned in Neil Gaiman's Don't Panic)? --JohnDBuell 03:19, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

A particulary notable inward link

This page [2], at the website of the production company for the 3 new adaptions, links to the wikipedia entry on Hitchhikers! Morwen - Talk

Forgetting something?

The plot description does not say anything about the earth being destroyed. Nothing. --mathx314 January 5, 8:00 PM (EST)

Er...actually the first line of the plot synopsis begins "The series follows the adventures of Arthur Dent, a hapless Englishman who escapes the destruction of Earth" (my bold text). I'd say that's something...? -- Guybrush 02:29, 6 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Woops, sorry. --mathx314

6 May 2005 (film debut date)

Perhaps not germane to these discussions at all, but perhaps discussed by the marketing department at the film company (I'm not in the loop, and this article was the first I realized that a film was being made of HHGG), 6 May in a common year (as 2005 is) is the 126th day of the year. 126 is three times 42. CharlieZeb 14:18, 15 Jan 2005 (UTC)

It's even stranger than that. Whichever day of the year was chosen to be the release date, it would have had a mysterious relationship with 42...
1 = 42 / 42
2 = (42 + 42) / 42
3 = (42 + 42 + 42) / 42
4 = ((42 + 42) / 42) * ((42 + 42) / 42)
125 = (42 + 42 + 42) - (42 / 42)
126 = (42 + 42 + 42)
127 = (42 + 42 + 42) + (42 / 42)
Scary ! (or perhaps not...) -- Derek Ross | Talk 02:34, 2005 Feb 6 (UTC)

Lol... Well in the first trailer it was pushing May 5, not May 6. I noted that May 5 was, incidentally a Thursday. (ie. Thursday morning, the day the Earth was destroyed). But now that the second trailer is out, they are releasing it on April 29th, which is a Friday if I'm not mistaken. :( --EatMyShortz 12:47, 18 Feb 2005 (UTC)


The second paragraph of Introduction begins, "The series was originally going to be called 'The Ends of the Earth'". Since this paragraph talks about changing the most basic conception of the Hitchhiker's universe, I assume this refers to the radio series, but it's not specified. In fact, following on from the first paragraph, it would most logically apply to the book series. Could someone please clarify? Binabik80 06:00, 18 Mar 2005 (UTC)

It was indeed the radio series that was originally going to be 'The Ends of the Earth' - six episodes, with the Earth ending in a different way. The first episode was going to end with the Earth being demolished by aliens to make way for an interstellar bypass.... None of the other ideas/episodes were ever developed. For more information, see Neil Gaiman's Don't Panic, or Nick Webb's Wish You Were Here, or the 20th anniversary radio programme (which is included in the H2G2 collector's edition CD box set of the radio series). Since this _is_ a bit (needlessly?) confusing, isn't it high time H2G2 the radio series got split out into its own article?

PBS Showings

I am just curious where there was a PBS showing that was seven episodes. I experienced this series in its intial PBS showing in Denver, Colorado. Later repeats, either weekly or all episodes at once during pledge time, in Denver, Portland, Oregon, or Ketchikan, Alaska, were always in the six episode format. It may have happened where the Wikipedia contributer saw this series, but it was not an overall PBS occurance.MarnetteD | Talk 06:52, 8 Apr 2005 (UTC)


I'm not so sure the description of the Dopefish as the second stupidest creature is actually a nod to Hitchhiker's, since IIRC Commander Keen also lists those bouncing mushroom things as the only thing stupider than a dopefish. Radix 23:34, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Galactic Towel Day

I removed the below paragraph from the film section, because it is vandalism...cute, but still vandalism. JimCollaborator «talk» 04:57, Apr 30, 2005 (UTC)

  • The Guide lists April 29th as Galactic Towel Day, a holiday of major importance in the few places where the month of April is observed. The celebration of Galactic Towel Day was decriminalized in Earth Year 2005 to correspond with the day of the release of a certain comedy film on a planet which has been made by Slartibartfast to look and behave exactly like one which has been destroyed in a parallel universe. Galactic Towel Day is celebrated in movie theaters, every April 29th, by finding a new use for your towel at exactly the moment when the character named Ford mentions the importance of towels. (It has recently been held by some that Galactic Towel Day falls on the 30th, rather than the 29th. This widespread misperception has been found to be the result of a subtle program of sabotage, initiated during the Vogons' takeover of the Guide, that was intended to disrupt the resonance between different universes' observances of the major galactic holidays, thereby destabilizing the quantum barriers between these universes and opening up their resources to exploration and development. It is strongly advised that beings wishing to observe Galactic Towel Day confine their observances to the 29th rather than the 30th, and ignore any source claiming the contrary.)

Chess computer - contradicting info

"In 1989 it lost two games to the then World Chess Champion, Gary Kasparov. In 1986 one of its successors, [.. ]" - isn't a successor expected to come AFTERWARDS? (clem 09:39, 5 May 2005 (UTC))

A typo. I'll correct it to 1996. Thanks. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 11:19, 5 May 2005 (UTC)

Radio series, TV transfer

It's not considered unusual for a successful BBC radio series to migrate to television. Little Britain and The League of Gentlemen are more recent examples of this, another famous transfer was Hancock's Half Hour, while radio versions of popular TV series were not unknown (Steptoe and Son). Adams had of course written for TV, for Doctor Who, and the radio series had a huge cult following in the late seventies and early eighties, when there really was almost nothing else similar either on TV or in print, but TV executives were beginning to take SF more seriously after the success of Star Wars and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 01:15, 13 May 2005 (UTC)

Don't forget Dead Ringers. --JohnDBuell 01:25, 13 May 2005 (UTC)


As I stated above, I'd love to see information about the H2G2 stage shows. There are also possibilities of adding more information about the LPs (specifically cast changes between the radio series and the LPs, and their subsequent US releases by Simon & Shuster Audioworks). Then there are the comic book adaptations.... And I guess the towel is still counted as an official 'adaptation'? Am I missing any others? --JohnDBuell 02:52, 14 May 2005 (UTC)

For information about towels see

The LPs were released by Hannibal Records in Canada

M.J. Simpson's Pocket Companion does have some info on several of the stage shows and a bit on the LP recordings. Nick Webb's Wish You Were Here also had a note or two. I'm waiting on my copy of Simpson's Hitchhiker bio of Adams, and I should be able to add appropriate cast lists/other material. --JohnDBuell 12:28, 26 May 2005 (UTC)


I don't like the ordering of this article, particularly sections 2 to 7.

Suggest the following order instead

1. Introduction
2. Original radio series
3. Books
4. Television series
5. New radio series
6. Movie
7. Other presentions
7.1 Interactive fiction
7.2 Re-recorded LPs
7.3 Stage versions

Any plot description outside of a specific instance section would have to be generalised enough to apply to all forms of the story. Morwen - Talk 13:14, 17 May 2005 (UTC)

Okay, though I'd change 7 to:
7. Other Adaptations
7.1 Stage Versions
7.2 LP versions of the radio series episodes (or re-recorded LPs, we can quibble on wording later)
7.3 Interactive Fiction
7.4 Comic books
And then keep "Hitch-Hikeriana", Trivia, Cultural References, See also and External links in that order (sections 8-12)? --JohnDBuell 13:49, 17 May 2005 (UTC)
Done. But we now exceed 36K for article length. Can we spin off something else? Cultural references perhaps? Especially since "The Hitchhiker's Guide to ..." is used a LOT (Hitchhiker's guide to SQL Server, published by Microsoft, Hitchhiker's Guide to the meaning of Everything, coming Nov. 2005, etc etc). And granted, Douglas pinched the "hitchhiker's guide to..." title format from Ken Walsh and "The Hitch-hiker's guide to Europe" but you can likely argue that H2G2 made that particular phrase VERY popular. --JohnDBuell 00:49, 31 May 2005 (UTC)
Cultural references section is absurd. There are probably thousands of references to 42 in popular culture. Morwen - Talk 11:05, 2 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I'd still like to see that section spun off to cut down the size of the main page. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy cultural references perhaps? Also, how about a The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy list of actors page, to cover those who appeared in the radio series, LPs, TV series, photo illustrated edition of the book, and the movie?
Forgot to sign my previous comment. Oops. Went ahead and created the cultural references article, which removed 5 KB from the main article. We went down from 39KB to 34KB. --JohnDBuell | Talk 19:12, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

The books are the most popular version?

Twice in the article the books are cited as being either the most popular version OR the most accessible version. Granted, the original radio episodes have not been available in America from an American (read: USA) distributor for some time, due to copyright clearances required for the music in the first six episodes, but there was a question submitted to the recent chat with Simon Jones and Geoffrey McGivern, where the questioner suggested that those two actors would be, to them, the definitive Arthur Dent and Ford Prefect. Does anyone have a quote or other citation to back the popularity claim? --JohnDBuell 20:00, 30 May 2005 (UTC)

Neither wording is great, and certainly there's no justification for calling them 'definitive', but the books certainly are - by far - the best-known version; large numbers of people, if they know about the radio and television series at all, assume that they're unfaithful adaptations of the books rather than the original version of the story. They're also the most readily-available; libraries and bookstores everywhere have many copies and editions, while the radio and television recordings are, even now, less common. David Arthur 23:42, May 30, 2005 (UTC)

Yes, the books are often assumed to be definitive--but only by those who don't know that the radio scripts came first. I hope we can find a wording that gives primacy to the scripts. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 23:53, 30 May 2005 (UTC)

Stuff to add

I presume the LP versions were only made due to rights issues in the first place. Do we know when the first LP/tape releases of the original series were made?

Going from Don't Panic, Pocket Companion: Hitchhiker's and Wish You Were Here it was more of a matter that there was a demand for a home release, even though Radio 4 repeated the episodes many MANY times over (as opposed to purely being a rights issue). But BBC Enterprises could not be convinced that a triple LP would be a good investment (and cassettes weren't that widespread yet), so they went to Original Records, and the LPs were released in 1979 and 1980. BBC Enterprises weren't convinced to do a novelization either, which is why THAT went to Pan Books, also in 1979. It's hard to say when the American tapes were first printed, the first holds a 1982 Hannibal Records copyright, the second has a 1980 DNA copyright (as noted in the article). --JohnDBuell | Talk 13:46, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)
So when was the first release of the actual radio series made? Morwen - Talk 15:54, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)
On cassette? No idea. The only info I have is the first RE-release of the cassettes was in the early 1990s, which is when DNA suggested the names "the Primary Phase" and "the Secondary Phase." --JohnDBuell | Talk 18:08, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Ah HA! I found it, it's in Pocket Essentials: Hitchhiker's Guide. The complete run of 12 episodes was first released by the BBC in September 1988 on six cassettes or six CDs, and that was the first ever BBC Radio Collection release on CD. Now, where do we insert this into the article? --JohnDBuell | Talk 02:28, 7 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Also, could do with a description of the whole Hitchhiker's phenomenon and how it got to be so huge so quickly - how it broke america, and suchforth. Right now apart from the 2 sections at the end it doesn't really mention that. I will try and obtain some useful facts from Don't Panic. Morwen - Talk 12:46, 2 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I did finally get my copy of Hitchhiker, and hope to read it and review the Omnibus and "Life the Universe and Douglas Adams" documentaries, and make any appropriate revisions. --JohnDBuell | Talk 21:37, 9 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Section Headings

I think we need to clarify that the introduction deals with the fictional guide. Origin or origins worked better, being about the origin of the whole idea - I don't mind that it focuses on the idea of the fictional guide, but with the first heading being "The Book" it makes it seem like the novel came first, which it didn't. Perhaps go back to "Origin of the Guide" or "Origin of the fictional Guide" or something less ambiguous? --JohnDBuell | Talk 04:07, 4 Jun 2005 (UTC)

MJS and H2G2

I e-mailed M.J. Simpson this weekend, and asked him if he'd had a look at our pages. He said he had not, has no plans to, and would further ask that a biography of him NOT appear on Wikipedia, and for there not to be links between him and H2G2. Obviously, since his books are published already, we still have to appropriately cite sources, but I am removing wikilinks where I find them connected to his name, for a page that was never written. I'd recommend any other future editors please do the same, until and unless Mr Simpson changes his mind. --JohnDBuell | Talk 20:01, 5 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I support the action in respect for MJ's decision (and I seriously doubt he's changing his mind). For further info, read this on his website: Kieff | Talk 20:28, Jun 5, 2005 (UTC)


The new radio series appears to have retconned the original radio series to be set in the present day with talk of novelty ringtones and DVDs of Casablanca. Is there anything in the original radio series to contradict this (apart from the "what, from a fiver?" line)? Morwen - Talk 12:50, 9 Jun 2005 (UTC)

No, that's it. The first episode was the only one in any series to be set on Earth, and there's a lovely onscreen note that comes on when that line is spoken on the DVD: "Pure nostalgia, 1980's prices!" --JohnDBuell | Talk 21:24, 9 Jun 2005 (UTC)

H2G2 the international phenomenon

Do we want to possibly squeeze in a section about Adams's popular "live" readings of the H2G2 books in Germany, or the German or Finnish adaptations of the books into their own radio series (and the French adaptation of the original 12 episodes)? Also, should we say anything in the main article (or perhaps the movie article) about the $21 million opening US weekend, Disney's positive reaction to the film opening in first place, and the fact that the film DID manage to stay in the US top ten for four weeks? I can back up the first part from the Pocket Essentials book, and the second part with information from --JohnDBuell | Talk 23:19, 10 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Also going with this, Hitchhiker (the biography) discusses several convention appearances by Adams in the early 1980s: Hitchercon I, Glasgow, Scotland, 26-28 September 1980, Terracon (a Star Trek convention) the weekend before Hitchercon I, Panopticon III, and ChiCon IV, Chicago, IL, USA, 2-6 September 1982 (his last con appearance). --JohnDBuell | Talk 20:27, 12 Jun 2005 (UTC)
We certainly want (some, if not all) of this. Would want definitely the movie stuff, and mentions of translations of the books. And we need the info about the french/german/finnish radio series somewhere. It's getting harder and harder to squeeze stuff in without removing important stuff. Morwen - Talk 22:19, 12 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Sub-article? The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy overseas as a title perhaps? I was also reading about the BIG tour DNA did to promote the Infocom game AND the fourth book in the USA in 1984. Probably part of the reason the game sold 400,000 copies. --JohnDBuell | Talk 12:13, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Revised proposal: paragraph in the article in a section titled International Phenomenon and main article titled The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy as international phenomenon. We can start with the Worldcon in 1979 where H2G2 was nominated as the first radio series ever for a Hugo, lost to the original Superman movie, but that was the first exposure (other than shortwave radio) that many people from outside the UK had to the series, then go with the tours, and the other info I've touched on here. --JohnDBuell | Talk 15:59, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
That sounds good. Morwen - Talk 16:05, 13 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Paragraph in main article done. Need to start the "international phenomenon" article, but I also need to scan a couple more book covers. --JohnDBuell | Talk 00:39, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)
New article done! Or at least it has a GOOD head start! I included information from the USA, France, Finland and Germany, but if anyone has anything to add (Canada, Australia, New Zealand? Other nations and other translations?) PLEASE feel free to do so in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy as international phenomenon article! --JohnDBuell | Talk 03:48, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)


While the article goes through peer review, should we go ahead and include EVERYTHING in references? This would mean the radio series CDs, the script book, all five novels, the DVDs? Or is that overkill? --JohnDBuell | Talk 19:16, 12 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Don't think we need to reference things for summaries and plot differences, but possible. I'm planning to nominate this article on Wikipedia:Featured article candidates as soon as we get inline references sorted out as the people on peer review want. Morwen - Talk 14:45, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Okay, if anyone asks for further references while we're in FAC, I have my books at the ready. Oh, and I did dig up a couple more details about early radio/TV broadcasts in the 25th anniversary Illustrated Edition of the book, but I'll probably put those in the new "international phenomenon" article. --JohnDBuell | Talk 17:13, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Quick question: Fourth paragraph in "The Original Radio Series section" where the note about the selection of Journey of the Sorcerer comes from Perkins's notes about the radio series, right out of the script book, should that get changed to the new note form? Bibliographical information on the script book is on its page. --JohnDBuell | Talk 18:32, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Yes. It should say "according to Perkins, blah bla blsh blah [then footnote]". Morwen - Talk 18:57, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Do you want me to do it and muck up the order (since it'd be under Adams, Douglas and Geoffrey Perkins), or do you want to? :) --JohnDBuell | Talk 19:35, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
We could re-use reference 2, since there's nothing in 4 that's not in 2? By the way, are you on IRC or any sort of instant messaging system? Morwen - Talk 20:01, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Let me triple check and make sure there's not something in the revised edition that deletes a reference from the prior edition. It was more of a rewrite than just adding on material. And the answer to your other question is yes, but not at work. :) --JohnDBuell | Talk 20:37, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Gah, I forgot that Gaiman is between Adams and Simpson - meant 3 and 5 there, which still means we'd need to renumber things. Arsebiscuits. OK. :) Morwen - Talk 20:47, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Done. Script book is #2 now, Gaiman book is #3, and dropped the reference to the 1st edition Pocket Companion book, as the specific sections I referred to hadn't changed much. --JohnDBuell | Talk 23:20, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Okay I just made sure we are USING all seven books that we've cited, so I've made appropriate notations/changes. So who's going to turn the external links into notes? :P --JohnDBuell | Talk 12:27, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Notes are done. References and notes are using two different footnoting systems, but oh well. --JohnDBuell | Talk 18:40, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)
  • You realise that there are only 9 notes but the spelling section refers to notes 10, 11 & 12, which aren't there? Hiding 10:32, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)
That's because three more notes get created off of the Template:HitchhikerSpellingDisclaimer, and those notes are explained immediately after the disclaimer with bullet points. The ref/Note system is what creates [10], [11] and [12]. If we can find another system that does NOT create numbers, that would be ideal.
I see. I've only just started to use notes as I had the impression they were frowned upon, and I haven't quite worked out all the intricacies. Hiding 12:05, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Re-recorded Marvin songs

Apparently some new versions of the Marvin songs popped up on iTunes and suchforth for the movie? Could do with adding a sentence or two about (seem to recall that Fry sung them not Rickman??) Morwen - Talk 14:45, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Yep. "The Marvin Mixes" and "Guide Entries" - ALL done by Fry, in third person (for the Marvin songs). I've never been able to confirm who wrote the new guide entries but I suspect those were Fry as well. Should I drop track list info somewhere? I've got them downloaded on my home PC. --JohnDBuell | Talk 17:07, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Ok, added a sentence about this. Morwen - Talk 17:19, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)

More spelling

Right. I went to Waterstones's today and looked at various editions of the book. Both forms are still in use "Hitch Hiker's" and "Hitchhiker's". However, in the text of the books themselves I was only able to find "Hitch Hiker's" used, even in the editions which actually have it Hitchhiker's on the spine. Morwen - Talk 12:56, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Well, if you'd like to change the template to reflect this, go ahead. But I'm inclined to leave what we have alone, since that was arranged at per a vote, and also following DNA's 2000 instructions (which is exactly what all of his biographers are doing, and even the script book changed all of the spellings to "Hitchhiker" retroactively). --JohnDBuell | Talk 22:46, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Don't think we should add, just noting here for information. Morwen - Talk 10:30, 16 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Article length

Since I expanded the notes section, we've actually hit 42KB. --JohnDBuell | Talk 20:59, 19 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Six by Nine

I reverted to correct's edit that changed "six by nine" to "six by seven" in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe section. I just thought I should point out here that "six by nine" is not a typo, regardless of the fact that six by nine is 54. (And even though six by nine is 42 in base 13, as Douglas Adams pointed out, "nobody makes jokes in base 13).

P.S. Congratulations on making 42 kilobytes. Ben Babcock 15:46, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

I'm fixing the article to clarify that "six by nine" is not the ultimate question; it's the wrong question, which the Earth calculated after the Golgafrinchans screwed up its programming. DanielCristofani 3 July 2005 10:25 (UTC)

The Smiling Green Blob

Did Douglas Adams ever tell who/what the green blob is that's on every one of the books' covers? This has bugged me ever since I read the first book, so I am curious. --Bottles98

It was a logo that the U.S. publishers came up with to symbolise the idea of hitchhiking through the galaxy - I think it was supposed to be a planet sticking out its thumb, or something of the sort. Douglas Adams had nothing to do with it, and disliked it. David Arthur June 28, 2005 22:37 (UTC)
Ah, thanks very much. I couldn't find anything online about it. I can understand why he didn't like it, it has nothing to do with anything, and just looks weird. --Bottles98
He didn't dislike it, he hated it. By the way, the green guy is called "Cosmic Cutie". Oh, and we should include this info somewhere in the article. Kieff | Talk June 29, 2005 01:30 (UTC)
There's a reference to Adams being a lot happier when the 42 puzzle was used for the late 90s editions of the paperbacks...but I don't remember in which book, and I won't have my books at hand until I'm back home next week. It'll be in one of M.J. Simpson's books, or Nick Webb's. --JohnDBuell | Talk 30 June 2005 02:52 (UTC)
I could've sworn he was named "Jeremy Pacman", though I guess that's a cultural reference that won't have crossed the Pacific... (See Jeremy Paxman for details.) I only ever saw him referred to by this name in the fanzine Mostly Harmless, though, so it's probably not official. Where does "Cosmic Cutie" come from? -- Guybrush 30 June 2005 04:04 (UTC)
I think you mean the Atlantic Ocean :) I do recall in whichever book it was (either Hitchhiker or Wish You Were Here) that "Cosmic Cutie" was the US name, and Jeremy Pacman was the UK nickname. I believe the artist is Peter Cross; the character appeared on all 5 US printings, and even the collected editions. Not sure if Harmony Books ever had an "official" name or not for the 'blob' --JohnDBuell | Talk 30 June 2005 05:20 (UTC)
You're quite right; that's what happens when an Antipodean chimes in about UK/US cultural references. I don;t think either name is official, though "Jeremy Pacman" is the only name I've seen Adams luminary MJ Simpson use, for example here. He should get a mention, with both names, if only so people know Adams hated him. Not sure why they brought him back for recent editions... -- Guybrush 30 June 2005 05:45 (UTC)
The "Jeremy Pacman" name is a pun on the name of the BBC TV interviewer I don't think it needs to be recorded in this entry.
FYI: The 'blob' does appear on the 1990s US VHS releases of the tv series and its documentary, the 1984 Infocom game, and the 2002 US DVD release. But it's NOT on the most recent reprintings of the books, these being tied in with the movie logo instead. --JohnDBuell | Talk 3 July 2005 07:02 (UTC)

Any volunteers?

Didn't want to do this myself, since this is an active FA. Hoopy and frood are both dicdefs that have been transwikied to Wiktionary. They are word invented b Adams in the book, and so should be merged and redirected here. One of the editors here want to do it? Thanks. --Dmcdevit 1 July 2005 22:32 (UTC)

This has been brought up on the Douglas Adams page as well (see Talk:Douglas Adams). Frankly I think it'd be a better fit there, because many of the positive things said about his use of language, and inventions of words, would apply to the Hitchhiker's series and to his other books. --JohnDBuell | Talk 3 July 2005 06:56 (UTC)