Nifty Halloween YouTube Thing: Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds

As promised yesterday, it’s time for Mercury Theatre on the Air to invade Grover’s Mill, New Jersey.

The “War of the Worlds” episode of Orson Welles’ radio series is quite possibly the most famous radio broadcast in history. Granted, that’s mainly for its aftermath, with several (but not millions) listeners mistaking the drama for an actual newscast, but the drama itself is well worth the fame on its own. The episode’s first half, which offers a “you are there” approach so finely crafted we don’t mind the goofiness of a set-up that’s apparently based around the hit program Popular Dance Music Repeatedly Interrupted by Random Astronomy News, is as nerve-wracking as it is inventive, while the more direct second half makes with some quiet dread.

Bonus! You can download an MP3 of the complete broadcast here.

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