Monday, January 10, 2011

Tomorrow Calling

Click for video from
Recently I came across a video I'd been seeking for years: the BBC adaptation of William Gibson's "The Gernsback Continuum." A short production - barely 11 minutes - "Tomorrow Calling" is an earnest if somewhat cheesy depiction of Gibson's sublime short story. It is also, as you'd imagine, a British retelling, abandoning the story's references to L.A. and Tucson (and San Jose!).

"The Gernsback Continuum" makes a regular appearance in my COMM 149 classes - sometimes to the consternation of my students who struggle to wrangle with the author's rat-a-tat pop culture references and full-tilt plunge into weirdness.

Never read the story? I recommend that you start there. Afterward you might check out the BBC's version. Doing it the other way around - or, God forbid, limiting your exposure to the video - would be like dismissing the need to read The Great Gatsby because the movie is available at Blockbuster [Ooops, I'm dating myself. I mean Netflix].

And, no, Gibson's short story isn't "great literature," but it's certainly worth a read. Then a look.


Anonymous said...

Tim Leandro has put his own copy up on Vimeo, it's in better quality. thanks for your post - it led me to the Vimeo copy in the end - I've been looking for it too.

Andrew Wood said...

Great find! Thanks for sharing,