Episode 177 – Robert Heinlein’s “By His Bootstraps”

By His Bootstraps by Robert HeinleinWOW. This week I have the great pleasure of presenting to you, rendered in brilliant stereo sound, this gem of a short story by the grand master Robert A. Heinlein, By His Bootstraps.

We again have to thank the esteemed Yuri Rasovsky, who produced these works for the Beyond 2000 series which aired on NPR. You can download many many more stories from this collection on Audiblesearch for 2000x.

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  • This story was produced in 1982. Dreyfuss and Cordis Heard (John Heard’s sister) were recorded in NY. Engineer Richard Fairbanks and I finished it in Chicago. It won a couple of awards on its first airing. When the NPR commission of 2000x came along 16 years later, it gave me a chance to take Bootstraps out of mothballs.

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  • Chris Loughlin

    having read this delightful story and heard a decent audio version.. This allmost ruins this wonderful story with bad over acting and horrid addlibbing and changing of lines that completely mangles Heinleins wonderful story.. turnign Bob Wilson from a lovable dup to a rediculious farce that devates from the story by at lest 30%

  • A very interesting episode, i should try to check this more often. Thank you.

  • Yeah, episode 177 is now up. gonna watch this.

  • I really like this article. Keep it up. Keep up the good works. Keep blogging.

  • I just wanted to comment and say that I really enjoyed reading your blog post here. It was very informative. I’ll be back to read more in the future.

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  • dannyR

    Sorry, but I read the original when I was a teen, and consider it history’s first fully mature examination of the TT paradox, and really superbly constructed short story.

    The audio production develops the story along its own lines, and is self-consistent with its own aims and the themes and essential plot in the minutest detail. For those, like me, who already know the story very well, the ‘ad-libbing’ and modernization could well have been dispensed with, yes. For newcomers, the very character of the multiple interactions of Bob/Joe/Diktor with himself makes it a gnarly problem without a necessary burden of either self-cogitation out loud, or the interposition of a narrator.

    The creators apparently decided they wanted a self-contained drama explicated by the character(s) himself. It’s not a standard presentation, but I think it worked well enough.