After seeing numerous advertisements for the first episode titled “The Hood Maker”, and seeing that Richard Madden who you may well know as Robb Stark from Game of Thrones was playing the male lead in it, I decided to give it a go.
I recognised Philip K. Dick as the author of The Man in the High Castle (a book I still haven’t got round to reading) and from seeing his name lurking around in the Science Fiction section at Waterstones, so I was interested to see what Electric Dreams would be like.
To summarise, Electric Dreams is a 10 part anthology series, based on short stories written by Philip K. Dick, with each episode focusing on a different story. The first episode which aired last night at 9PM on Channel 4, was based on the story titled “The Hood Maker”, which was originally published in an American fantasy and science fiction magazine in June 1955, which looked like this;
The first episode starred Richard Madden as Agent Ross and Holliday Grainger as Honor. The original story was adapted by Matthew Graham (Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes) for Channel 4’s televised version, and so does as expected appear to differ from the original. Anyway, the plot basically takes on an ‘us vs them’ concept, which I admit is quite commonly found in the sci-fi genre. The narrative follows Agent Ross in the fight against the hood maker, who first appears when a man is seen wearing the hood in a protest against an Anti- Immunity Bill. The significant thing about wearing the hood is that it prevents the characters with telepathy (also known as Teeps) from reading their minds, while wearing it. Honor, one of the Teeps, is utilised by the state and becomes Ross’s sidekick in figuring out what the Hood Makers are plotting. But with this, we also learn that the Teeps are conspiring and relationships are tested between Ross and Honor when a unexpected twist is revealed.
The Hood Maker definitely reminded me of Humans, which also aired on Channel 4, with the whole humans versus ‘the others’ concept. But that didn’t hinder my enjoyment, and i’m definitely looking forward to next week’s episode “The Impossible Planet”.
I would also like to read the original of The Hood Maker, so I can look further into how it differs from the TV version, (one that I know of being that the original hoods were actually more like metallic headbands) and to see if the endings are different.
Anyway, thank you for reading! Let me know in the comments if you have any thoughts on Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams so far!