Neil Gaiman's How the Marquis Got His Coat Back

BBC Radio 4 Full-Cast Dramatisation
Length: 1 hr
4.5 out of 5 stars (780 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Paterson Joseph stars as the Marquis de Carabas in this brand-new BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Neil Gaiman's spin-off short story, set in the magical world of Neverwhere.

Returning us to London Below, this enchanting tale continues the story of one of the most colourful characters from Neverwhere - the cool, charming, resourceful Marquis de Carabas, who trades in favours and always has a plan....

The Marquis' coat is a thing of wonder and beauty. Sleek, stylish and 'the colour of a wet street at midnight', it has numerous pockets, sumptuous sleeves and the power to transform a young sneak thief into a nobleman. And now it is missing, sold by the Sewer Folk. To reclaim it, the Marquis must venture into one of the most terrifying parts of the subterranean city, encounter an old enemy, face dreadful dangers and - worst of all - accept help from someone very close to home.

Expanded and dramatised for Radio 4 by the award-winning Dirk Maggs (Neverwhere, Good Omens, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) and codirected by Dirk Maggs and Heather Larmour, this spine-tingling production features a star cast including Adrian Lester, Don Warrington and Bernard Cribbins. Contains 15 minutes of additional unbroadcast material. Duration: 60 mins approx.

©2016 Neil Gaiman (P)2016 BBC Worldwide Ltd.

What listeners say about Neil Gaiman's How the Marquis Got His Coat Back

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Some say I sound like my younger self!

If you could sum up Neil Gaiman's How the Marquis Got His Coat Back in three words, what would they be?

Marquis de Carabas... wait, that's probably not very descriptive! How the Marquis Got His Coat Back is another radio dramatization set in the Neverwhere universe. It adapts the short story of the same name and continues our adventures in London Below as our favorite sarcastic rogue goes after his most prized possession - his truly remarkable coat which he lost during the events of Neverwhere. Given the Marquis is arguably the best character in Neverwhere (fight me), it's enjoyable to follow him. BBC Radio's Neverwhere and Good Omens adaptations are a blast and this one has all the charm of its predecessors.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Isn't it obvious?

What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

PATERSON JOSEPH FROM THE TV MINI-SERIES REPRISES HIS ROLE AS THE MARQUIS. Honestly, do I have to say anything else?

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

You should've heard the sound I made when the Marquis says, "Some say I sound like my younger self!"

Any additional comments?

I enjoyed BBC Radio's dramatization of Neverwhere a couple years ago. It had a stellar cast and was an engaging adaptation. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed David Harewood but Paterson Joseph has always been the Marquis to me and it was so great to hear his voice!

11 people found this helpful

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Loved It

Seriously a great little continuation of Neverwhere. Personally I'd read several full length novels about the Marquis.

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if only there was more

Once again Neil Gaiman has brought alive the mysterious London Below allowing us the capacity to wonder at the magic that could exist. I can only hope that more stories will follow.

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The Coat Really Does Make the Marquis

Before we get The Seven Sisters, the novel-length sequel to Neverwhere, Paterson Joseph and Company take us back on this whip-snap return to London Below. Yes, it's a very brief tour, clocking in at just about an hour. However, for a tasty little side-adventure featuring everyone's favorite Marquis, it''s as good as sipping Atlantean wine.

The Marquis de Carabas is feeling a little bit at a loss after the events of Neverwhere because he doesn't have his wonderful coat, so he sets upon a quest to get it back. Upon his way he meets the mushroom people, the Elephant, some terrifying shepherds, and a long lost relative. Well, maybe not so lost. That last I found a bit odd, but it mostly worked out to be fun in the end.

Paterson Joseph, who played the Marquis in the original TV miniseries, returns as the titular character. I was somewhat skeptical about this, because David Harewood's portrayal of de Carabas in the Neverwhere radioplay (with James McAvoy, Christopher Lee, Benedict Cumberbatch, etc.) was so excellent. But I needn't have worried. Joseph is having so much fun, it's impossible for us not to. He even gets to make some cracks about the Marquis looking like his younger self.

Truth be told, I listened to this story in the Rogues anthology (narrated by Roy Dotrice), and I thought there were some wonderful little tweaks in this version that really let it shine. For example, Richard Mayhew has a brief appearance which helps frame the story, and Old Bailey does a good job of setting up the stakes. Also, the Marquis sounds like himself, and doesn't have a French accent. (C'mon, Roy!)

Mainly, I was just thrilled to be able to take another trip to London Below, even if it was an incredibly brief one. It was a fun little excursion, and it definitely has me excited and eager for another trip to meet back up with de Carabas, Richard, Door, and the rest of our friends with the Seven Sisters.

3 people found this helpful

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Excellent all around

A wonderful performance, complete with a cameo from the author himself. Definitely recommend it for fans of Neil Gaiman.

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So good

This adaptation is amazing. If you have read Neverwhere and want more, listen to this instead of just reading it. It makes the good story even better.

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Very entertaining!

this was very fun to listen to. I hope there is more on the horizon!

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  • SJ
  • 06-28-19

terrific story

I loved the story, it was a continuation of Neverwhere and it was a bit easier to follow if you had already read it, but you catch on fairly quickly even if you hadn't. Gaiman has a gift for magical realism. the voice acting was terrific and the only time I had difficulty was during a brief chorus at Shepherd's Bush. the difficulty might have been due to my speakers, but the multiple voices made me long for a written copy to refer to. still, the experience was easily worth the price of the book.

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really great short read

it is the perfect short story taking place in the Backdrop of neverwhere. If you loved neverwhere, you will absolutely love this story. Its honestly more entertaining than the story Neverwhere

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Never Enough

I'm not sure I can ever get enough of this universe. It's my favorite of Neil Gaiman's and this production of the short story was well done. If you listened to the dramatisation of the original story you will be happy to hear the original cast breathe life into the characters again.

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  • Little Red
  • 12-27-16

Enjoyable

Great listen but rather too short for the money!its only an hour long which I didn't notice but and enjoyable short continuing from the original.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Tod Werewolf
  • 12-10-16

Short but sweet

another wild adventure with the marquis in the other London of Neil Gaiman's fantastic imagination. a great addition to Neverwere, sadly short but full of the "Real meanings of London place names" .
Neil Gaiman books are always mad and off in a marvellous tangent to world's that are just a blur in the edge of your vision, it's there but you just can't find it with out his help.

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  • Cheryl Richardson
  • 05-15-19

Over Too Soon

Over too soon! Loved Neverwhere and looked forward to this follow up. While I enjoyed the full dramatisation I had really enjoyed Neil Gaiman's reading of Neverwhere more.

3 people found this helpful

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  • S. Lidwell
  • 12-27-16

*grins*

Excellent in all aspects other than its brevity, and lack of siblings. More of London below please.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Mr
  • 05-30-19

5 star

Wonderful story and performance, I only wish it were longer.
Definitely need to have read or listened to Neverwhere before this.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Stina
  • 11-14-16

Excellent work, BBC (and Neil Gaiman)

This is a superb dramatisation of Neil Gaiman's short story, and a sequel to Neverwhere. All the performances are well done, and the story is everything I could wish for. Lovely to meet the Marquis again, and to be in London Below.
Perfect for anyone who's read (or even better - listened to) Neverwhere and want more.
Absolutely brilliant!

7 people found this helpful

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  • Jeffrey Baker
  • 03-03-20

Answers an important question

An answer I've been seeking since NeverWhere was first on BBC 2. Very interesting story.

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  • Marsh
  • 01-07-20

great story just too short

loved it, really got into it and then it just ended. far too short a book for me

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  • Janny G
  • 11-14-19

not worth the cost of the credit

I enjoyed the original Neverwhere book once I got into it but I feel that this spin off should have been added to the back of it. I would certainly not have paid the full book price for it in a book shop and I feel that the £7.99 credit cost was not value for money either. sorry.

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  • M Preston
  • 01-19-18

Paterson Joseph even better than Harewood

in this story we pick up with one of the best characters from neverwhere the marquis. I liked harewood playing the part but Paterson I think is funnier and more conniving which is what it needs. Shame it's not longer but nice to revisit London below

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  • Bex
  • 04-25-18

Good short story. Interesting insight

Good short story with an interesting little insight into the Marquis' life.

Would love to read/hear more of his backstory.

If this was a TV show or movie, Johnny Depp would make a fine Marquis with his unique mannerisms.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Samira
  • 09-26-19

Continues the Neverwhere tradition

Really enjoyed this short story in the Neverwhere universe. It has a twisty, layered plot and fleshes out more about the Marquis and his bavkground immediately after Neverwhere (make sure you listen to that first). A whole host of enjoyable new characters and peoples are introduced.

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  • Ewan
  • 09-03-19

Disappointing

Neverwhere is still a perennial favourite, was hoping this would match it. It doesn't. Move along.