The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Week 3

Welcome to Week 3 of the Online Book Club discussion of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

This week's reading was really something, wasn't it? I never knew what was going to happen from minute to minute. And, I don't think I really understood all of the fantastical descriptions, but I think I grasped the important details. 

At the beginning of the section, Zaphod, Ford, and Arthur all come together, and in this scene, we realize that Zaphod and Ford are "semi-cousins," and Arthur has met Zaphod before. Zaphod masqueraded as a human named Phil and ran into Arthur at a party. I thought that was a funny details. Also, Arthur and Tricia McMillan have met before. That seems incredibly improbable that they have all met each other before, but I think the only thing we could guarantee in this section was that a lot of improbable things were going to happen. 

Zaphod finds a planet called Magrathea--a rich planet that used to create custom planets. I thought that was a really fun idea that there were people who were so rich that they were able to create their own planet. Apparently, a lot of wealth is stored on Magrathea, and Zaphod hopes to steal it. Once the planet started shooting missiles, I knew things weren't going to go as the team expected. Check out the video clip below if you want to see how that scene plays out in one of the adaptations. Is it what you imagined? 

What did you think about the detail that the whale that was created after Arthur turned on the Improbability Drive crashed and opened up the secret passage into the interior of Magrathea? That was wild. I thought that there would be piles of money lying around as soon as they went in the passage, but there wasn't. That sure would have shortened their visit to Magrathea! 

Near the end of the section, Arthur meets an old man who explains that Magrathea has just been sleeping through an economic recession, and they are waiting to be able to make planets for people again. Then, he explains they are making an Earth 2 since Earth 1 was destroyed minutes before the completion of its mission. What do you think Earth 1 was supposed to do? Why do you think the author chose to say that Earth 1 is really controlled by mice who are doing experiments on people? That was unexpected, but I think it was a really fun idea. It was almost believable when the old man spelled it out for Arthur. 

Don't you just wonder about how Douglas Adams got the idea for this book? How did he think of all of these crazy things? He must have had a really creative mind. If you're interested in seeing some of his personal papers, check out this article about his papers that are displayed at St. John's College, and then, check out this one about some frustrations he had while writing. 

Are you anxious to read the last section? Are you curious about what Earth's purpose was? How do you think the book is going to end? Make sure to leave a comment on our Facebook page, so I can know what you thought of this section!

Make sure to finish the book before joining us next week! I can't wait to hear from you!