Tuesday, July 20, 2010

OTR REVIEW: X MINUS ONE " A Gun for Dinosaur"

Series Name: X Minus One
Episode Title: A Gun for Dinosaur
Original Air Date: 1956
Available On: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Gun_for_Dinosaur
Sound Quality: Good

When a time travel story is done well, it's probably one of the most exciting, possibly due to the fact that most of us aren't really thrilled with our own time. Some of us look to glory days gone by; romantic visions of history populated with heroes and monsters. Others are mortified by the injustices of the past, and look hopefully toward the future for solace, or, if of a more cynical mindset, for our inevitable, self-designed end. Whichever the case may be, people love to speculate on and experience time travel in the only way currently available to us...unless someone out there knows differently.

One of my favorite tales of time travel derring do is the stalwart radio show X-MINUS ONE - A Gun for Dinosaur. It has several things to speak for it; it's wonderfully written(based on a story by L. Sprague De Camp), nicely acted, the production and direction are great. Besides the aforementioned time travel element, if that weren't enough to get one's adventure lobe vibrating, there are dinosaurs! What more could a Radio/pulp geek like myself want?

The plot centers around a small, bookish figure of some wealth who goes to a well known big game hunter in search of a once-in-a-lifetime adventure...he wants to bag a dinosaur. Of course, our hunter is connected with a team of government scientists, who, in exchange for a healthy commission to fund future research, allow him access to the device. They meet in a bar, and the first thing our hunting hopeful hears is that he's not large enough to hunt dinosaur, and then he's told why...

The rest is a great adventure of paradoxes and betrayal, of arrogance and of murder. The basic problem lies in the common paradox that one can't be in the same place as one's self. This brings on a clever twist that makes me smile every time. If you like time travel, and I know that you do, you'll see upon listening why A Gun for Dinosaur gets
5/5 Golden Masks from me. It can be downloaded at the Wikipedia article or at Archive.org...please do so, and enjoy!