Reading, Short And Deep #001 – Zero Hour by Ray Bradbury


Reading, Short And DeepReading, Short And Deep #001

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss Zero Hour by Ray Bradbury

Zero Hour was first published in Planet Stories, Fall 1947 (June-August).

Here’s a link to the PDF of the story.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson

3 thoughts to “Reading, Short And Deep #001 – Zero Hour by Ray Bradbury”

  1. Loved the conversation and have a couple of responses (not a surprise to Jesse, right?).

    I really appreciated Eric’s point about Peek-a-Boo. I never ever thought about the role reversal that the end of the story implied. Who’s surprising who now?

    On children being monsters – we can’t deny that it was a favorite device for Bradbury. The Veldt is the most famous example but I seem to recall a story where the woman’s unborn child is killing her … and I thought that was Bradbury’s. In this story, however, I would say that the kids are just being kids. In the same way that they will shrug off a Grimm’s fairy tale which makes adults blench, they just don’t have the perspective or experience to see the bigger picture of Drill’s “game.” If Bradbury has a criticism of the adults, it seems to me that it is they have forgotten what it is like to be a kid and that their imaginations mirror reality, differently expressed. This is the thing my husband and I mention over and over to people who ask how to be good parents, “We remember what it was like to be a child or a teenager … and respected our kids on that basis.” These adults don’t.

    Also, the little girl who didn’t want to play anymore – it wasn’t necessarily that she was not like the other kids any more. Or that they were unlike her now. It was that she DID understand what was going to happen. She was afraid. She was crying. That girl saw the big picture. Those kids were “in the moment” in their exciting game and couldn’t.

    Anyway, thanks for this and I look forward to listening to the others!

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