A second run of Radio Four’s sci-fi season Dangerous Visions kicks off tomorrow. Mixing adaptations of classic SF books with original dramas, its line-up of 11 productions features works written by the likes of Philip K Dick, Ray Bradbury and Lauren Beukes, and acting talent including Iain Glen, Derek Jacobi, Hayley Atwell and James Purefoy.
The season kicks off with a dramatisation of Ray Bradbury’s classic 1951 short story collection The Illustrated Man on Saturday at 2.30pm; Iain Glen plays the titular tattooee. Bradbury’s 1950 collection The Martian Chronicles has been adapted into a drama too, starring Derek Jacobi and Hayley Atwell; that airs on Saturday 21 June at 2.30pm. There’s also a new two-part version of Philip K Dick’s Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? (the 1968 novel which inspired Blade Runner ), starring James Purefoy and Jessica Raine.
Alongside these classics are eight original dramas, concerning everything from artificial bees and sleep machines to immersive virtual reality games. One highlight: The Problem With Talitha (Sunday 15 June, 12.30am). Written by Arthur C Clarke Award winner Lauren Beukes (The Shining Girls) and set in a celebrity-obsessed dystopia, this 15-minute drama revolves around a South African reality TV star whose every moment is recorded for consumers to experience. You can listen to the first five minutes below.
Another name which SFX readers might recognise (particular those of a certain vintage...) is writer Trevor Preston, creator of ‘70s telefantasy series Ace Of Wands . His two-part drama The Zone concerns “a mysterious microcosm of our world” where the “dangerous disappeared” (such as escaped prisoners and hunted terrorists) go. It airs at 2.15pm on Wednesday 18 June and Thursday 19 June.
Dangerous Visions runs from Saturday 14 June to Sunday 29 June. Full details of all 11 productions are available on the BBC website .