Friday, 15 October 2010

Weird Circle

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I love old radio drama from the pre-TV age, especially horror and sci-fi stuff. Weird Circle is one of many American series collected and available for download or online listening at Old Time Radio. Weird Circle seems to have specialised in the Victorian classics - as well as a lot of Poe (including the comparatively obscure 'Oblong Box') you get a fair old wodge of Wilkie Collins, a bit of Dickens, Maupassant, Bierce, and even Bulwer Lytton's 'The House and the Brain'. There are also some earlier Gothic works, notably the Spectre of Tappington from the Ingoldsby Legends, and a brave stab at a dramatisation 'The Ancient Mariner'. Check them all out here. Other good shows to try are Escape, and The Black Mass.


Iain said...


It's rather more modern than OTR (early '80s), but the Canadian series Nightfall (CBC) has some cracking episodes - 100 overall, including some classic adaptations of authors like Aickman (Ringing The Changes), Le Fanu (Carmilla), as well as a lot of modern stories.Well worth a listen if you can find it.

More here.

You may have come across them already, but if not The Price of Fear is worth a listen too, even if only for the quintessentially camp introductions from Vincent Price,

valdemar said...

Thanks Iain, much appreciated. I do know the Price of Fear, for I am old and decrepit and have listened to the wireless since the early Seventies.

Iain said...

Ah, the old steam wireless.

No idea if the Nightfall episodes can be found, but well worth a good search. I wish a project like that would be done now - radio's so cheap compared to TV or film, and so perfect for a good ghost or horror story - no disappointing monster reveals, for one thing...

valdemar said...

Yes, Iain, I agree that radio is the right vehicle for spooky stuff. I think, however, that writers are now very visually orientated, and some of them are not - how can I put this gently? - very 'bookish'. Charlie Brooker (or somebody) remarked that films are now being made by people who've never read books but know a lot about video games, and it shows. Radio scripting requires such finesse that I wonder if today's writers can do it well?