What Nick Briggs as done here is rather splendid and ingenious, this story has been told many, many times, and to better and lesser degree of success or indeed worthiness of the original written variety. Interpretations have been forthcoming in all shapes and forms. Films, Stage and Audio. I must admit that for me the definitive is the book, and a very close second is largely I think due based on that wonderment of childhood the Jeff Wayne’s War of The Worlds album, that wonderful gatefold sleeve variety that every one of my friends fathers seemed to own, and have a copy stowed in their 1970’s vinyl collection, usually hid among the Top Hits Albums of the 70’s free with every 5 gallons of petrol, or indeed in one instant, the album was hidden among a family Bible and a rather over the top leather-bound copy of the Encyclopaedia Britannia, even in those days of flares and wing collars there was an over riding need to hide your inner geek. Of course visually for me it was a sunny evening and BBC 2 used to have a science fiction season around 6pm on a Tuesday night, for which I will always recall seeing Hollywood interpretation of this classic. Of course for many the Orson Wells radio play that caused so many people to actually panic, ring the government, or even leave home is the paramount interpretation of the classic. Well Briggs as lot to live up to, and a lot of very powerful comparatives set against.
The first part sets the scene well, for one thing it is a literal interpretation set in the same time frames as the book, so there is no modern concepts to deal with, and, with a simply stellar cast lead by Richard Armitage and Lucy Briggs-Owen, it certainly makes an interesting outing for the first 2 hours of this release. Well what do I think after taking in the first part, well, it’s beautifully handled, superbly produced, amazingly acted, but more over, it is simply stupendous, there is a reason for this and I have to say that it is nothing short on the re-work by Briggs or by the acting or anything other than, this as been produced by a very small audio drama production company over possible a week or so of recording and they have produced something that in my humble and honest opinion is crazy good. It has everything and more that you could ever want from a version of this and possible more, it is entertaining beyond it’s release by far. I have to say with great fondness that it also for me as the production qualities of something that was more a labour of love, and as is always the case when something is that then it shows, and it shows in the first part of this in buckets. I am totally in love with the thing and so I don my headphones and fire up the media server to listen to the next couple of wondrous hours of entertainment, trapped as I am in a world where the Martian invasion is laying havoc to humanity. It’s as given me the treat of although knowing the ending I don’t even care for it might just be a surprise to me afresh like the first time I came across this excellent story, it’s that good.
I can happily report that the second half of this release was even better than the first, the sound stage and sound production was simply amazing, I literally nearly threw my bottle of water at the wall when an alien smashes into the house that our intrepid two heroines are trying to hide from the aliens with the rather peculiar religious person. It is stunning, this release should be up for an award, simply the thing that has made my Good Friday even better.