I am looking for the name of the short story where the children of a neighborhood become the conduit for an invasion by aliens. I thought it was "Peek-a-boo" but I think that was the last line of the story.Thx.
The story you are looking for is "Zero Hour". I believe it is collected in THE ILLUSTRATED MAN. (And you are right: "peek-a-boo" is the last line of the story. Those poor parents!)
Yes, I checked, and it is in The Illustrated Man, and what a chilling, creepy story ending!! (Loved it!)
Wasn't there one about kids raising mushrooms in their basements?
Yes, in The Machineries of Joy is a story called "Boys!Raise Giant Mushrooms in Your Cellar!" It's fairly creepy, too.
Both about children innocently/unwittingly assisting alien invasions. In the first the parents are TOTALLY unsuspecting until the way-too-late "peek-a-boo." In the second, the father has suspicions but can't do much about them.
I have an audio copy of Zero Hour as well a video version from the original RB Theater.
I always present these after we have read and discussed the story from an Ill. Man lit. unit.
I read somewhere that Zero Hour was the most frequently requested episode during the days of the old Suspense Radio series. Get a copy of the story, turn down the ligths a little some night, and begin reading - and listening also if you can get a tape of the story! It is not difficult to understand why such a stir. My h.s. students seem "mesmerized" by what transpires by the end of the.......
See and listen @ http://www.genericradio.com/smarttags/library.htm
Scroll down to:
Suspense -"ZH" and X Minus One -"Mars is Heaven"
Mention of "Boys! Raise Giant Mushrooms in Your Cellar" brought a wonderful flashback to when I was about 12 years old and read that story for the first time. It scared the heck out of me! I had a difficult time wandering down into a dark cellar for some time after that. Ray has a wonderful way, in so many of his stories, of taking what seem to be the most innocent of childhood activities, and turning them into something very different and frightening for his readers.
"The thing on top of the stairs" is a great story - from one of the older short story collections....Long After Midnight I think. But anyways I've recently read it and it sort of scares me now.............At night I go down stairs for a midnight drink, on my way down in the dark I'm afraid of whats there and usually run up the stairs, once again afraid of what might be there. Silly yes, in my mind? Maybe....
Ray has said that, as a child, he was susceptible to many of the childhood terrors which affect so many kids (which includes me). It was his memory of those childhood nightmares that later in life inspired so many of his wonderful (and often scary) stories. Moreover, his charming children's book, SWITCH ON THE NIGHT, about a little boy that conquers his fear of the dark, was written for his daughter so that she would not suffer the same fears he did as a child.
[This message has been edited by Richard (edited 01-24-2004).]
"The Thing at the Top of the Stairs" is actually relatively recent...from "The Toynbee Convector." I love it and was so glad to see Ray still doing this type of story rather than only tales, no matter how well done, of adult contemporary life.
The link to the '50's radio version of "Zero Hour" in the 2004 posting above no longer works, so I thought I would include a current link for those who would like to listen to that fine show. From 1955, here's a tale "well calculated to keep you in suspense": Ray Bradbury's "Zero Hour", as broadcast on the SUSPENSE radio show:
Richard, this post takes us back a few years ago!! 1.23.04 / 11:49am Friday, I must have been on lunch break....!
Students were always captivated by RB's works! The visions and narrations he shared gave them truly different perspectives to ponder, no matter which s.s., novel, essay, or video was being studied. Occasionally, listening to the old radio episodes was a special lesson skill practiced. A critical analysis of some sort was then assigned as a follow-up. When their views were presented in class orally the next day, their teenage interpretations were quite entertaining and enlightening!
The opening to this classic presentation of "Zero Hour" is still chilling to hear even a "few years" later!! Enjoy!
fjp451, I find the ending ("Peek-a-boo!") of that SUSPENSE radio show to be particularly creepy!
Also, I see that you joined this Board in 2001, and I joined in 2003. Some might call us "Old Timers". However, I prefer to think of us as "Extraordinary Elders"!
Richard, it has been a fine ride throughout the years with many informative literary exchanges shared with great folks from all corners of the Our World! It was a real pleasure to hear from another "Good Old Pard" Braling II the other day. I hope to enjoy his posts in the coming weeks as autumn leaves now make their first appearances!
I have the complete 65 episode collection of RB Theater and applied many in my lessons (to youth and adults) over the years. Quite a few of them are quite succinct in capturing the tones and intents of Mr. B's writings. It is often stated that it was a difficult task to reproduce the core of many of his works due to his multi-leveled approaches in his writings: unusual content, imaginative use of the language in his narratives, nostalgic ties to his own youthful experiences, etc.
I think Something Wicked is enjoyable, as are Wonderl Ice Cream Suit, specific portions of Illustrated Man and Martian Chronicles, and the original Fahrenheit 451 does stand tall, even over 50 years later, (The 2018 version is not going to take my time up!)
I will continue to be patient in looking forward to a fine production of Dandelion Wine being successfully accomplished. It is a masterul cultural comment about growing up in a small American town, where everyone knew everyone else, childhood was filled with scratched knees, secret hiding spots, dirty hands from playing outdoors, barking dogs, mysterious paths, best friends, and "extraordinary elders" always nearby to tell you about the most important facts of life!
Here is "Zero Hour" from RB Theater:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWsYmRHRfooThis message has been edited. Last edited by: fjp451,
|Powered by Social Strata|