Exploring Tomorrow (1957-58) aired John Fleming’s story “Inferiority” on June 4, 1958. As always, legendary Astounding/Analog editor John W. Campbell, Jr. (1910-1971) hosts the broadcasts, interspersing his own commentary throughout each episode. It’s a rare treat to be able to hear the man’s voice, and a shame many of the episodes haven’t survived in better condition (unless expensively remastered and restored).
“Inferiority” also goes by the following various titles: “The Diamond Mountain of Venus,” “The Mountain of Diamond,” and “Venus’s Diamond Mountain.” Following a disastrous exploratory voyage to Venus where the team leader has died, his best friend and the leader’s son return to the planet in search of a giant mountain made of solid diamond. But there is more mystery and danger than meets the eye, not least of which is what the best friend withholds from the son about his father–including who originally inhabited the planet millions of years before. Compassion, justice, the nature of superiority and inferiority, all are at play in this well preserved episode.
Play Time: 20:04