Exploring Tomorrow -- The Mutants

Sunday, 09 May 2010 00:01 Dave Truesdale

Exploring Tomorrow was a short-lived replacement show which ran from December 11, 1957 through June 13, 1958. Its 29 episodes were introduced by none other than the legendary editor of Astounding Science Fiction, John W. Campbell, Jr.  Campbell also provided brief commentary during short breaks within many of the episodes, some of which were adapted from already published SF stories, and some which were written specifically for the show by such as Robert Silverberg and Gordon R. Dickson.

"The Mutants" aired on the Mutual Broadcasting Network on February 12, 1958. It takes place in the aftermath of an atomic war, when many people, having been irradiated by the dangerous fallout, have become mutants of one sort or another. Being shunned by family, friends, and society in general, around 80% of the mutants have chosen to live in a government provided mutant "sanctuary," where they find they can live more comfortably among their own kind. The following radio drama tells the sad, tragic tale of one Clyde Merrick--a mutant with an unusual gift, the use of which he hopes will change his life forever.

Time has not been kind to many of the Exploring Tomorrow episodes, for many of them contain scratches and in other ways are less than perfect in quality of reproduction. Nevertheless, this is one of the better quality episodes and can be enjoyed with only minor discomfort. The story is a strong character piece, and for diehard SF fans provides the additional (and rare) pleasure of being able to listen to the voice of the man who shaped the science fiction field like no other editor before or since, John W. Campbell (1910-1971, pictured above).

Play Time: 18:20