Great writing and a flawless cast produces one fantastic dramatisation of Neil Gaiman's work (the unabridged version read by Gaiman is also brilliant). For those who like dramatisations, this is a stellar cast performance which recounts this strange tale of bravery, intrigue and adventure on the streets of London Below. Benedict Cumberbatch puts in a magnificent performance as The Angel Islington, as does Anthony Head. You won't regret buying this audiobook.
Buy this audiobook. Buy it now. Buy it fast. You'll laugh until you're sore in the stomach listening to the adventures of MJN air, Britain's least competent but most endearing airline. This is British radio humour at its very best, and it has Benedict Cumberbatch in the cast (as Captain Martin Crieff)! The entire series is excellent, so don't stop here, but the second and third series and the Christmas special too - there's not a dud episode among them. I cannot wait for more episodes so come, and have listened to these ones many time and they just keep staying funny.
In addition to being brilliantly funny, Fawlty Towers is, at times, a very physical comedy with lots of visual gags (think of the German marching walk and the business with the moose head). They've neatly solved this problem by having the episodes narrated by Manuel, the Spanish waiter (Andrew Sachs). These voice-overs make it clear what's happening, but those who are very familiar with the show might find them unnecessary. There are also discussions with writer and performer John Cleese before each episode, which are well worth listening to if you're a fan and are after some extra insight and knowledge about the show and its creation, but also slightly give away some of the events in the upcoming show (but they don't ruin them at all).
The episodes remain hysterically funny, but also painfully awkward, as they were on first viewing on the BBC. Brilliant work, and well worth a listen to revisit the good (and not so good) folks of Torquay.
I grew up on Golden Age Radio, and while I love to read, I typically consume more books via audio thanks to a job that lets me listen while I work. As an aspiring writer, I try to read a great deal of non-fiction in addition to a variety of fictional genres. I especially love history, historical fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and old-style gothic horror.
Like it says in my bio, I looooooove the golden age of radio, and absolutely nobody defined that era quite like the great Orson Welles. The majority of these performances are from the Mercury Theater and the Campbell's Playhouse. The scripts are based on a variety of novels, historical figures, and such, and showcases what I consider to be not only Welles' finest hours, but also some of his forgotten treasures and even some of the performances that weren't quite up to snuff... which is still a lot of fun in most cases. From "The War of the Worlds" to "A Christmas Carol" to a portrayal of Abraham Lincoln and beyond, this is truly an eclectic mix, as one would expect from the Renaissance Man of Radio.
Experienced listeners will already know what to expect, and odds are that if you're in this camp, you know a great deal of the material. Listeners who are new to these sorts of recordings may find that the age and recording / broadcast quality of some of these are, well, quite terrible by modern standards. Static and distortion are to be expected, but for those with ears to hear, these things may actually lend to the overall charm. Regardless of the quality of the recordings or of the scripts, the performances are a great cross-section not only of Welles, but of his fellow actors and actresses as well, Agnes Moorehead and Frank Readick to name but a couple. This is the stuff that began the empire of large scale entertainment, the stuff of legend.