The following is a list of minor characters in the various versions of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
, by Douglas Adams
Agrajag is a constantly reincarnated
entity who ends up being killed multiple times by Arthur Dent. First appeared as the Bowl of Petunias created by the Heart of Gold
in the first book.
Alice Beeblebrox, Mrs
Alice Beeblebrox is Zaphod's favourite mother, and guards the true story of Zaphod's visit to the Frogstar, waiting for "the right price." She is referenced in Fit the Eighth
As their names were written to suggest, every Allitnil
is an anti-clone of a Lintilla
. They were created by the cloning company to eliminate the billions of cloned Lintillas flooding out of a malfunctioning cloning machine. Being anti-clones, when an Allitnil comes into physical contact with a Lintilla, they both wink out of existence in a puff of unsmoke.
Along with Poodoo and Varntvar the Priest, three Allitnils arrived on Brontitall to get the three Lintillas there to "agree to cease to be". Two of the clones eliminate their corresponding Lintillas, but Arthur shoots the third Allitnil, so that one Lintilla survives.
Appearing only in the final episode of the second radio series, every one of the Allitnils is voiced by David Tate.
The Almighty Bob
is a deity
worshipped by the people of Lamuella
. Old Thrashbarg
is one of the priests who worships Almighty Bob; however, Thrashbarg is often ignored by the villagers of Lamuella
. The character may be a reference to The Church of the SubGenius
was a woman, on the brink of retirement, and on whose behalf a raffle was being held in order to buy her a kidney machine. An unnamed woman (played by June Whitfield
on the radio) convinces Arthur Dent to buy raffle tickets while he and Fenchurch are in a railway pub, attempting to have lunch. Arthur won an album of bagpipe music.
Referred to in: So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
Arcturan Megafreighter crew
The captain and first officer were the only crew of an Arcturan Megafreighter
carrying a larger number of copies of Playbeing
magazine than the mind can comfortably conceive. They brought Zaphod Beeblebrox to Ursa Minor Beta, after he had escaped from the Haggunenon flag ship. Zaphod was let on board by the Number One, who was cynical about the Guide's editors becoming soft. He admired the fact that Zaphod was "hitching the hard way"
They only appear in Fit the Seventh of the radio series, where the captain is played by David Tate, and his number one by Bill Paterson. However, some of their dialogue was given to other characters in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe.
Three different barmen
appear during the series.
Barman of the Horse and Groom
In the first book, in the TV series and the film, Ford and Arthur quickly down three pints - at lunchtime - to calm their muscles before using the teleport to escape on the Vogon ship. Being told the world is about to end he calls "last orders, please." The Red Lion Inn was used during the TV series, and referenced in the dialogue (Adams himself can be seen in the background of this scene); Steve Conway
played the character on TV. This barman was played by David Gooderson
in the original radio series and Stephen Moore
in the LP recording. In the 2005 motion picture, Albie Woodington
portrayed this particular barman.
Barman in Old Pink Dog Bar
Ford visits the Old Pink Dog Bar in Han Dold City, orders a round for everyone and then tries to use an American Express card to pay for it, fails, is threatened by a disembodied hand and so offers a Guide write-up instead. This happens in So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
. In the radio adaptation of this novel, the barman was played by Arthur Smith
Barman in the Domain of the King
Another barman takes a galactic sized tip for Elvis from Ford on his Hitchhiker's corporate Dine-O-Charge credit card in an attempt to bankrupt InfiniDim Enterprises in Mostly Harmless
and the final radio series. This bartender was played by Roger Gregg
BBC department head
When Arthur returns to the Earth in So Long and Thanks for All the Fish
he calls his department head to explain why he was absent from work the last six months: "I've gone mad.". His superior is very relaxed about it and asks when Arthur will return to work, and is quite satisfied by the reply "When do hedgehogs stop hibernating?". In the recent radio series, the part is played by Geoffrey Perkins
Blart Versenwald III
In the epilogue of So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
, Blart Versenwald III
was a top genetic engineer, and a man who could never keep his mind on the job at hand. When his homeworld was under threat from an invading army, he was tasked with creating an army of super-soldiers to fight them. Instead, he created (among other things) a remarkable new breed of superfly that could distinguish between solid glass and an open window, with an off-switch for children. Fortunately, because the invaders were only invading because they couldn't cope with things back home, they too were impressed with Blart's creations, and a flurry of economic treaties rapidly secured peace.
There is apparently a relevance of this tale to So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish, but it has temporarily escaped the chronicler's mind.
The strong silent type, an unnamed bodyguard
is seen guarding the late Hotblack Desiato
in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
. In Episode Five
of the TV series he is portrayed by actor David Prowse
, Star Wars
' Darth Vader
, as a man of few words who can lift Ford Prefect
clean off the floor. In the LP adaptation of the radio series, the character was voiced by David Tate
Arthur attempts to play Scrabble with a caveman
, who is not even able to spell "Grunt" and "Agh", and "he's probably spelt library with one R". However, he does spell "forty-two", giving Arthur the idea to pull out letters from the letters bag at random to attempt to find the ultimate question. Either the Vogons destroying the Earth five minutes too early, or the Golgafrinchan
's interference, results in Arthur's brainwave patterns providing the unhelpful "What do you get when you multiply six by nine?" which doesn't quite match the Answer
Appears in Fit the Sixth Played by David Jason, the novel The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, and TV Episode Six.
(a.k.a. part #222319B) is a small, round, melon-sized, flying security robot which Ford Prefect
enslaves to aid in his escape from the newly re-organized Guide
offices in Mostly Harmless
. "Its motion sensors are the usual Sirius Cybernetics garbage." Ford captures Colin by trapping the robot with his towel
and re-wiring the robot's pleasure circuits, inducing a cyber-ecstasy trip.
Ford uses Colin's cheerfulness to break into the Guide's corporate accounting software in order to plant a Trojan Horse module that will automatically pay anything billed to his InfiniDim Enterprises credit card. Colin also saves Ford's life when the Guide's new security force, the Vogons, fire at him with a rocket launcher after Ford feels the need to jump out of the window. Colin was last seen being sent (at the risk of possible lonely incineration) to look after the delivery of the Guide Mark II to Arthur Dent in the Vogon's postal system.
Colin was named after a dog belonging to a girl Ford had "fond memories" of: Emily Saunders. Colin appears in Mostly Harmless and in the radio series he was played by Andrew Secombe.
Dr. Dan Streetmentioner
Author of Time Traveller's Handbook of 1001 Tense Formations
which is handy for those travelling through time, and especially to Milliways
. His guide is more complete than The Guide
itself, which ignores the time travel tense topic – other than pointing out that the term 'future perfect' has been abandoned since it was discovered not to be. He is also mentioned in the third radio series, which gives many examples of his tense forms.
is a computer that was created by the pan-dimensional, hyper-intelligent race of beings (whose three dimensional protrusions into our universe are ordinary white mice) to come up with the ultimate answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything
. Deep Thought
is the size of a small city
. When, after seven and a half million years of calculation, the answer finally turns out to be 42
, Deep Thought admonishes Loonquawl and Phouchg (the recievers of the Ultimate Answer) that "[he] checked it very thoroughly, and that quite definitely is the answer. I think the problem, to be quite honest with you is that you've never actually known what the question was."
Deep Thought does not know the ultimate question to Life, the Universe and Everything, but offers to design an even more powerful computer (Earth; see Earth in fiction) to calculate it. After ten million years of calculation, the Earth is destroyed by Vogons five minutes before the computation is complete.
On radio, Deep Thought was voiced by Geoffrey McGivern. On television and in the LP re-recording of the radio series, he was voiced by Valentine Dyall. In the feature film Deep Thought's voice was provided by actress Helen Mirren.
In the television series, Deep Thought was shaped like a massive, black, and metal trapezoid with a yellow rectangular display that blinked on and off in time with the computer's speaking. The timing of the light's flashing was done on set by author Douglas Adams. Valentine Dyall's voice was dubbed in later.
In the feature film, it appears as a large, vaguely humanoid computer, with a gigantic head supported, as if in a bored repose, by two arms. This particular version of Deep Thought likes to watch television and late in the film can also be seen to have the Apple Computer logo above its eye. This is a reference to Adams being a fan and advocate of the Apple Macintosh until his death.
IBM's chess-playing computer Deep Thought was named in honor of this fictional computer.
The technology-related website Deep Thought was named after this fictional computer.
Deep Thought can be seen inscribed on a computer in the NORAD VI area of the 1992 computer game The Journeyman Project.
Regarding the name, Douglas Adams was quoted as saying "The name is a very obvious joke.", explaining (on Book Club on BBC Radio 4 in January 2000) this - obviously - as "Deep Throat".
Disaster Area's chief research accountant
As Disaster Area's earnings require hypermathematics, their chief research accountant
was named Professor of Neomathematics at the University of Maximegalon
and in his Special Theories of Tax Returns
he proves that space-time
is "not merely curved, it is, in fact, totally bent." The Guide shows a graphic indicating that most of the earnings ends up with the accountant.
Referred to in:
Dish of the Day
The quadruped Dish of the Day
is an Ameglian Major Cow, a Ruminant
specifically bred to not only have the desire to be eaten, but to be capable of saying so quite clearly and distinctly. When asked if he would like to see the Dish of the Day, Zaphod replies: "let's meet the meat." The Major Cow's quite vocal and emphatic desire to be consumed by Milliways
' patrons greatly distresses Arthur Dent, and the Dish is nonplussed by a queasy Arthur's subsequent order of a green salad
, since he knows "many vegetables that are very clear" on the point of not wanting to be eaten — which was part of the reason for the creation of the Ameglian Major Cow in the first place. After Zaphod orders four rare steaks, the Dish announces that he is nipping off to the kitchen to shoot himself. Though he states, "I'll be very humane," this does not comfort Arthur at all.
The character is not present in the original radio series, but does make a cameo appearance in the finale of the fifth radio series. The first appearance of him was in a stage adaptation in 1980 at the Rainbow Theatre. Since then he appeared in the second novel, and the television series. In the TV series, he was played by Peter Davison, who was at that time both Sandra Dickinson's husband and the newly announced fifth Doctor Who. Dickinson played Trillian in the television series (and "Tricia McMillan" in the final radio series), and suggested casting Davison, who was a fan of the radio series.
East River Creature
As Ford Prefect
travels through space in a Sirius Cybernetics Corporation
spaceship, he has a dream in which he encounters a strange creature made of slime from the East River in New York who has just come into existence. After asking Ford a series of questions about life, and Ford's recommendation of finding love on 7th Avenue, the creature leaves Ford to talk to a nearby policeman on his status in life.
In Fit the Twenty-First, the East River character was played by American comedian Jackie Mason.
Known as "The Triple-Breasted Whore of Eroticon Six", Eccentrica Gallumbits
is first mentioned in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
when Arthur looks up Earth
for the first time in the guide. The entry for Earth follows that for Eccentrica Gallumbits. She is heard about again during a newscast that Zaphod Beeblebrox
tunes into shortly after stealing the spaceship Heart of Gold
. The newsreader quotes Eccentrica describing Zaphod as "The best bang since the Big One
." It was also reported in Fit the Ninth of the radio series that Zaphod had delivered a presidential address from her bedroom on at least one occasion.
Pears Gallumbit, a dessert which has several things in common with her, is available at The Restaurant at the End of the Universe. This dish is likely a play on Peach Melba, which is likewise named for a famous woman.
Some people say her erogenous zones start some four miles from her actual body. Ford Prefect disagrees, saying five.
This character never actually appears in the series, but is mentioned by various characters in all five of the books. In the 2005 movie, however, we see her giant legs as Ford attempts to reason with her on Viltvodle VI.
In a possible homage to the series, the film Total Recall features a triple-breasted prostitute (played by Lycia Naff); it also features a number of other references to the Guide, such as wrapping a towel around one's head to avoid being found (synonymous with the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal).
She is referenced in an issue of the Legion of Super Heroes.
is the name of the shipboard computer on the starship Heart of Gold
. Like every other system on the spaceship, it has a Sirius Cybernetics Corporation
Genuine People Personality. Thus, Eddie is over-excitable, quite talkative, over-enthused and extremely ingratiating, or alternatively a coddling, school matron-type after a particularly morose conversation with Marvin the paranoid android. Shipboard networking interconnects Eddie with everything from the air conditioning upwards on the Heart of Gold
, with the downside the whole ship is effectively crippled by Arthur Dent's request for tea
from Nutrimatic Drink Dispenser
, the computation of which nearly crashed Eddie and everything connected to him.
On one occasion when certain destruction seems quite imminent, Eddie sings "You'll Never Walk Alone" in a particularly cheesy and upbeat tone.
He is voiced in the first two radio series and on television by David Tate. In the television version, Eddie has lights on his case that flash when he speaks. Douglas Adams read in Eddie's lines during filming to operate the lights.
In the 2004-2005 radio series, he is voiced by Roger Gregg and in the 2005 feature film by Thomas Lennon.
Effrafax of Wug
A sciento-magician who bet his life that he could make an entire mountain invisible within a year. Having wasted most of the period of time failing to create a cloaking device, he hired a company to simply remove the mountain, though this course of action lost him the bet, and his life, due in part to the sudden and rather suspicious presence of an extra moon, and the fact that you could never touch anything when you walked near the supposed invisible mountain. It is remarked that he should have established a simple Somebody Else's Problem field, which would make the mountain totally invisible, even where it to be painted bright pink.
Referenced in: Life, the Universe and Everything.
Elders of Krikkit
The Elders of Krikkit
were, in Life, the Universe and Everything
, under influence of the remains of the supercomputer Hactar, which æons previously had been blown to dust, but retained a measure of consciousness, and determined to destroy the entire universe using the supernova bomb they had built. Trillian used her feminine charm and smart rhetoric in an attempt to dissuade the elders, but failed to stop them deploying the ultimate weapon, which simply dented the council chamber very badly.
Emily Saunders was a girl that Ford Prefect had "very fond memories of." He initially thought of her name when trying to choose a name for the security robot he had captured. He decided that Emily Saunders was an absurd name for the robot and chose to name it after her dog, Colin.
Referenced in: Mostly Harmless.
is a real-life singer, who died in 1977
. It has been popularly suggested that he has been abducted by aliens
, or that he is actually an alien who faked his own death so he could return to his home planet.
In Mostly Harmless, Elvis is discovered by Ford Prefect and Arthur Dent working as a bar singer on an alien planet, and owning a large pink spaceship. Ford, having become a huge fan of Elvis while he was stranded on Earth, watched the performance intently for its entire duration. Presley is not actually named, however his identity is easy to determine from the facts that the bar is called "The Domain of The King," the "EP" initials in the pink spaceship which Ford and Arthur buy from him, and the accent in which he sings.
Ford's irreplaceable blue suede shoes, one of which is destroyed during the events in the early part of Mostly Harmless are a tribute to his Elvis fandom.
In the radio adaptation of Mostly Harmless, The Quintessential Phase, it has been indicated that in the alternate Earth which is the focus of the story, Elvis never died, and there is mention of an album "Elvis sings Oasis". He appears (but is not directly named) in Fit the Twenty-Sixth, voiced by Philip Pope.
Emperor of the Galaxy
The final Emperor of the Galactic Empire
in the Hitchhiker's
universe was placed into a stasis field within his dying moments many millennia prior to the events of the series. This left the Empire without a ruling Emperor, as the last of the Emperor's heirs all died. And so an Imperial President, elected by the Galactic Assembly, was later seen to hold power, without actually wielding any. This was the office held by Yooden Vranx
and Zaphod Beeblebrox
In the final novel, it is gardener Eric Bartlett
who discovers that space-aliens have landed on Tricia's lawn and hasn't cut her grass.
is Arthur Dent
in the fourth book of the Hitchhiker "trilogy", So Long, and Thanks For All the Fish
. Fenchurch was named after the Fenchurch Street railway station
where she was conceived in the ticket queue. Adams revealed in an interview that it was really the ticket queues at Paddington Station that made him think of conceiving a character there, but chose Fenchurch as a name because of Paddington Bear
She first appears as the unnamed girl in the café on the first page of the first book; she is the girl referred to as "sitting on her own in a café in Rickmansworth." In the fourth book, when the Earth and everyone including Fenchurch had mysteriously reappeared, a romantic relationship blooms between her and Arthur Dent. He teaches her to fly, before a first aerial sexual encounter, and a second with Sony Walkmen.
At the beginning of the fifth book, she vanishes abruptly during a hyperspace jump on their first intergalactic holiday. Douglas Adams later claimed that he wanted to get rid of the character as she was getting in the way of the story. Much of this is evident from the self-referential prose surrounding Arthur and Fenchurch's relationship.
In the the Quintessential Phase of the radio series, she is revealed to have been working as a waitress at Milliways since she vanished, and is reunited with Arthur Dent.
In the radio adaptation of So Long and Thanks For All the Fish Fenchurch is played by actress Jane Horrocks.
Frankie and Benjy Mouse
are the mice that Arthur (et al.) encounter on Magrathea
. Frankie and Benjy wish to extract the final readout data from Arthur's brain to get the Ultimate Question to Life, the Universe, and Everything
. Frankie and Benjy are, after all, part of the pan-dimensional race that created the Earth as a supercomputer
successor to Deep Thought
in order to find out the question to which the answer was 42
In the first version, the radio series, they offered Arthur and Trillian a large amount of money if they could tell them what the Question is. In later versions this was changed - unfortunately for Arthur, they claim the only way to do this is to remove his brain and prepare it, apparently by dicing it. They promise to replace it with a simple computer brain, which, suggested Zaphod, would only have to say things like "What?", "I don't understand" and "Where's the tea?". Arthur objects to this ("What?", he says. "See!" says Zaphod), and escapes with the help of his friends. Frankie says:
I mean, yes idealism, yes the dignity of pure research, yes, the pursuit of truth in all its forms, but there comes a point I'm afraid where you begin to suspect that if there's any real truth it's that the entire multi-dimensional infinity of the Universe is almost certainly being run by a bunch of maniacs; and if it comes to a choice between spending another ten million years finding that out and on the other hand just taking the money and running, I for one could do with the exercise
In the movie, they are in fact the manifestations of Lunkwill and Fook, the pan-dimensional beings who designed and built Deep Thought, and were squashed flat by Arthur Dent when they attempted to remove his brain.
On radio, David Tate played Benjy Mouse and Peter Hawkins voiced Frankie Mouse. They appeared in Fit the Fourth. They also appeared in Episode Four of the TV series, where they were voiced by David Tate and Stephen Moore.
Frogstar Prisoner Relations Officer
In Fit the Eighth
the Frogstar Prisoner Relations Officer
(referred to in the scripts as the "FPRO") does his best to annoy Zaphod by hosing him down, letting him think that he escaped to an Ursa Minor robot disco by body debit card, asking him for an autograph and teleporting away whilst Zaphod helps him with his respiratory problem - that he is breathing.
is the private brain
care specialist of Zaphod Beeblebrox
. In the radio series version, he is responsible for the order to destroy Earth.
In the story, the Earth is really a giant computer built to determine the Ultimate Question to Life, the Universe and Everything. Gag Halfrunt (as leader of a group of psychiatrists) is in cahoots with the Vogons to destroy the Earth to prevent the Ultimate Question from ever being discovered. The reason behind this plot is that the psychiatrists cannot afford to have the Ultimate Question revealed, because this would put them out of a job (on the premise that if the Question becomes known, everyone would suddenly start leading happy and productive lives, rendering the entire profession of psychiatry unnecessary). Later the Vogons also try (under Gag's direction) to destroy the starship Heart of Gold, because it is carrying Arthur Dent, who may have the Question buried in his brain somewhere. All of this is unknown to Zaphod because he has brainwashed himself to forget about the collusion. In the end Zaphod "remembers" and does, in fact, find The Ruler of the Universe.
Gag Halfrunt was used since his first appearance in Fit the Second as a running joke; he would remark, in an oddly German accent (possibly in reference to the Austrian psychiatrist Sigmund Freud), whenever asked about Zaphod "Vell, Zaphod's jist zis guy, you know?" This line has become a popular catchphrase among fans of the series.
On radio, he was voiced by Stephen Moore, and appears in Fits the Second,
On television, he was played by Gil Morris and in the film he is played by Jason Schwartzman. In both these versions he only appears briefly, being interviewed about Zaphod Beeblebrox, and the plot involving the Ruler of the Universe does not appear.
In Mostly Harmless
, Gail Andrews
is an astrologer
who is interviewed by Tricia McMillan
about the impact that the discovery of the planet Persephone, or Rupert
will have on astrology. She is an advisor to the President of the United States
, President Hudson, but denies having recommended the bombing of Damascus
In the radio series, she appears in Fit the Twenty-Third, and is voiced by Lorelei King.
, the disembodied mind and custodian of the Total Perspective Vortex
on Frogstar World B ("the most totally evil place in the galaxy"), suffers from real-life dualism
and is therefore having trial separation with his body, which has taken his forename Pizpot
. The dispute arose over whether sex is better than fishing or not, a disastrous attempt at combining the two activities, and his body going out partying too late.
Since he has no physical form that can be seen, he leads those condemned to the Total Perspective Vortex by humming various morose tunes so that the condemned can follow the sound of his voice.
Gargravarr was voiced on radio by Valentine Dyall - he appears in Fit the Eighth.
is the Head Waiter at Milliways
, the impossible "The Restaurant at the End of the Universe". He is professionally unfazed by Arthur, Ford, Zaphod, and Trillian's unruly arrival. He has a fine sales patter and a very dry sense of humour.
In the radio series Garkbit is played by Anthony Sharp, and appears in Fit the Fifth. In the television series, he is portrayed by Jack May and appears in Episode Five.
The book describes Garkbit as being a methane breather, with a life support system strapped discreetly to his thigh.
Son of Yesügei
, Genghis Khan
is both a distant ancestor of Mr Prosser
and was called "a wanker, a tosspot, a very tiny piece of turd" by Wowbagger, the Infinitely Prolonged
in "The Private Life of Genghis Khan", originally based on a sketch written by Adams and Graham Chapman
. The short story also appears in some editions of The Salmon of Doubt
Aside from being the favourite subject of author Oolon Colluphid
("Where God Went Wrong", "Some More of God's Greatest Mistakes", "Who is this God Person Anyway?" and "That About Wraps it Up for God"), God also makes a disappearance in the Guide's entry for the Babel Fish ("I refuse to prove that I exist," says God, "for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing". "But," says man, "The Babel fish is a dead giveaway, isn't it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguments, you don't. QED
Majikthise worries about philosophers sitting up half the night arguing that there may or may not be a God if Deep Thought can give His phone number the next morning. Arthur, Fenchurch and Marvin visit God's Final Message to His Creation ("we apologise for the inconvenience") in So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish.
Four other characters have the status of a god: Almighty Bob, the Great Green Arkleseizure, Thor and Rob McKenna.
An enterprising chap who addressed the problem of elevators
refusing to operate because they had been afforded a degree of prescience
(to facilitate their operation by allowing them to be waiting for you before you've even decided you want to go up or down a floor) but consequently became terrified of the future, and so taken to hiding in basements. Mincefriend became very wealthy when he patented and successfully marketed a device he had seen in a history book: the staircase
first appear in Fit the Sixth
of the radio series. In the novel series, their appearances are all in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
and in the television show, they appear in Episode Six
. In all formats, the story is essentially the same. Following their adventures at Milliways, Arthur and Ford teleport onto an "Ark Ship" containing a number of Golgafrinchans. This particular group consists of the Wodehousian
" who have common, middle-management types of occupations. They were sent away from their planet under false pretenses by the (upper class
) "thinkers" and (working class
) "doers" of their society, who deemed them useless. They were told that the entire society had to move to a new planet, with a variety of thin excuses, and that it was necessary for them to go first to prepare the new planet for their occupation. However, it turns out that one of the middle-men was necessary for survival, and as a result, the rest of the Golgafrinchan society died off (see below).
Agda and Mella
girls that Arthur and Ford hit on. On Golgafrincham, Agda used to be a junior personnel officer
and Mella an art director
. Agda is taller and slimmer and Mella shorter and round-faced. Mella and Arthur became a couple, as did Agda and Ford. In a way Mella was very relieved because she had been saved from a life of looking at moodily lit tubes of toothpaste. Agda died a few weeks later from a chain of events that Ford unknowingly started by throwing the Scrabble letter Q into a privet bush: it startled a rabbit, which ran away and was eaten by a fox, who choked on the rabbit and died, contaminating a stream that Agda drank from and became sick - it is said that the only moral one could possibly learn from these occurrences is not to throw the letter Q into a privet bush. Agda and Mella only appear in the novel.
is the ablutophiliac captain of the Golgafrinchan Ark Fleet Ship B. He likes to bathe with his rubber duck (he spent practically the entire time he was captain of the B Ark and as much of his time on Earth, a total time of over three years, as has been documented in the bath) and has got a very relaxed attitude towards everything. The Captain also has a fondness for a drink called "jynnan tonnyx". His personality was based on Douglas Adams' habit of taking extraordinarily long baths
as a method of procrastination
to avoid writing.
He was voiced by David Jason in the radio series and by Frank Middlemass in the LP album adaptation. On television, it was Aubrey Morris.
Great Circling Poets of Arium
These rock throwing poets can be seen in the Guide
graphics in the TV series
, heard about in the Primary Phase
and read about in the second novel
. They are original inhabitants of Golgafrincham, one of whose descendants inspire the stories that caused the creation of the "'B' Ark" that Arthur and Ford find themselves on. The first part of their songs tell of how five princes with four horses from the City of Vassilian travel widely in distant lands, and the latter - and longer - part of the songs is about which of them is going to walk back.
One of the Golgafrinchans on the prehistoric Earth, the hairdresser
was put in charge of the fire development sub-committee. They gave him a couple of sticks to rub together, but instead, he made them into a pair of scissors in the radio series, or curling tongs in the television and book series.
He was played by Aubrey Woods in the radio series, by Stephen Grief in the LP album adaptation, and by David Rowlands on television.
The Golgafrinchans' management consultant
tried to arrange the meetings of the colonization committee along the lines of a traditional committee structure, complete with a chair and an agenda. He was also in charge of fiscal policy, and decided to adopt the leaf as legal tender, making everyone immensely rich. In order to solve the inflation problem this caused, he planned a major deforestation campaign to effectively revalue the leaf by burning down all the forests.
He was played by Jonathan Cecil in the radio series, by David Tate in the LP album adaptation, and by Jon Glover on television.
Another Golgafrinchan on prehistoric Earth, the marketing girl
assisted the hairdresser's fire development sub-committee in researching what consumers want from fire and how they relate to it and if they want it fitted nasally. She also tried to invent the wheel, but had a little difficulty deciding what colour it should be.
She was played by Beth Porter both in the radio series and on television and by Loueen Willoughby in the LP album adaptation.
is the First officer in the Golgafrinchan Ark Fleet Ship B. He is not very smart, having difficulty tying up his shoelaces, but is regarded by the captain as a nice chap. His only function to appear in the series is to offer Ford and Arthur drinks.
He was voiced by Jonathan Cecil in the radio series and by David Tate in the LP album adaptation. On television, the character was renamed Number Three and played by Geoffrey Beevers.
is a militaristic
officer in the Golgafrinchan Ark Fleet Ship B. He captures Arthur and Ford and interrogates them. When they land on Earth, Number Two declares a war on another, uninhabited continent. He likes shouting a lot, and thinks the Captain is an idiot. He had probably been employed as a security guard on Golgafrincham.
He is played by Aubrey Woods in the radio series and by Stephen Grief in the LP album adaptation. On television, the character was divided into two different characters: Number Two played by David Neville on the planet Earth, and Number One played by Matthew Scurfield on the B Ark.
The telephone sanitizer
is involved in the plot thread relating to the planet Golgafrincham in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
. Ironically, after all the telephone sanitizers were sent away with the rest of the "useless" Golgafrinchans, the rest of the society died off from an infectious disease contracted from an unsanitized telephone.
Great Green Arkleseizure
The creator of the universe, according to the people of Viltvodle VI. Their legend has it that the universe was sneezed out of the nose of the Great Green Arkleseizure, and they thus "live in perpetual fear of the time they call 'The Coming of the Great White Handkerchief.'"
The Jatravartid's God appears in the second novel, the TV series, and the movie.
Grunthos the Flatulent
Grunthos the Flatulent
was the poetmaster of the Azgoths of Kria, writers of the second worst poetry in the universe, just between Paula Nancy Millstone Jennings
and the Vogons
The guide recites a tale of how, during a reading of his poem Ode To A Small Lump Of Green Putty I Found In My Armpit One Midsummer Morning, "four of the audience died of internal hemorrhaging and the president of the Mid-Galactic Arts Nobbling Council survived only by gnawing one of his own legs off."
Reportedly "disappointed" by the reception of his poem, Grunthos then prepared to read his 12-book epic, My Favourite Bathtime Gurgles (or Zen And The Art Of Going To The Lavatory in the TV series). He was prevented from doing so when his small intestine leapt up his neck and throttled his brain in a desperate bid to save civilization, killing him.
Excerpt from "Ode To A Small Lump Of Green Putty I Found In My Armpit One Midsummer Morning", taken from the TV series graphics:
- Putty. Putty. Putty.
- Green Putty - Grutty Peen.
- Grarmpitutty - Morning!
- Pridsummer - Grorning Utty!
- Discovery..... Oh.
- Putty?..... Armpit?
- Armpit..... Putty.
- Not even a particularly
- Nice shade of green.
Excerpt from "Zen And The Art Of Going To The Lavatory", also taken from the TV series
- Relax mind
- Relax body
- Relax bowels
- Do not fall over.
- You are a cloud.
- You are raining.
- Do not rain
- While train
- Is standing at a station.
- Move with the wind.
- Apologise where necessary.
Guide Mark II
In the final novel, the Guide Mark II is created by the Vogons to help them destroy all the many Earths that appear in the novels. By using reverse temporal engineering throughout the book, the Guide Mark II - which takes on the appearance of a bird with Unfiltered perception - cajoles the cast to their final destination at Club Beta on Earth to first re-meet Agrajag and then be destroyed by the mindless Grebulons.
Flexible and imaginative, Hactar
was the first computer
whose individual components reflected the pattern of the whole, much like DNA
in a biological organism. (See Jupiter Brain
.) Hactar is made by the Silastic Armourfiends
, who ask for an "Ultimate Weapon". Hactar, taking the request literally, builds a supernova bomb which would connect every major sun
in the universe
through hyperspace, thus causing every star
to go supernova
. Deciding that he could find no circumstance where such a bomb would be justified, Hactar builds a small defect into it. After discovering the defect, the Armourfiends pulverize Hactar.
Over æons Hactar moves and recombines to become a dark cloud surrounding Krikkit, isolating the inhabitants. Deciding that the decision not to destroy the universe was not his to make, he uses his influence to make them build their first space ship and discover the universe; he then manipulates them into the same rage which the Armourfiends possessed, urging that they destroy all other life.
After an incredibly long and bloody galactic war, Judiciary Pag banishes Krikkit to an envelope of "Slo-Time" to be released after the rest of the universe ends. At the end of Life, the Universe and Everything, after his scheme fails, Hactar slips the cricket-ball-shaped supernova bomb to Arthur Dent, who then accidentally saves the Universe again by being an abysmal cricket bowler.
He is played on radio first by Geoffrey McGivern, in a flashback for which McGivern is not credited during Fit the Seventeenth. He is then voiced by Leslie Phillips, appearing again in Fit the Eighteenth.
Haggunenon Underfleet Commander
The Underfleet Commander reports directly to the Haggunenon Admiral. The admiral had gone off for a quick meal at Milliways, where Ford and Zaphod attempted to steal his/her/its/their flagship. But as it had a pre-set return course, it resumed its place at the front of a hundred thousand horribly weaponed black battle cruisers. Because the Haggunenons have very unstable DNA and change their shape/appearance at random and often inconvenient times, the Underfleet Commander mistakenly assumes that Zaphod and Trillian are, in fact, the admiral.
The Underfleet Commander only appears in Fit the Sixth, voiced by Aubrey Woods. The Haggunenons were written out of subsequent versions, as they were originally co-written with John Lloyd, although they did appear in some stage adaptations.
Haggunenons are greatly inconvenienced by their genetic instability and so have vowed to wage terrible war against all "filthy rotten stinking same-lings."
A similar creature appears on the BBC TV series Red Dwarf.
There is a shapeshifting Dungeons & Dragons monster called a "hagunemnon."
Happy Vertical People Transporters
The lifts in the fictional Hitchhiker's Guide
offices are called Happy Vertical People Transporters
. Another "product" of Adams's fictional Sirius Cybernetics Corporation
, they are meant to be sentient enough to argue with and have "defocused temporal perception." The latter concept is meant to enable the lifts to see far enough into the future to arrive at a floor before a potential passenger realizes they wanted a lift, and thus remove any chatting, relaxing, and making friends people had to do whilst waiting for old-fashioned lifts.
The one lift with a voice appears in Fit the Seventh, voiced by David Tate. The lifts make a cameo appearance of sorts in The Quintessential Phase.
"only happens to be" the risingest young executive in the Dolmansaxlil Shoe Corporation. During Fit the Eleventh, he is on Brontitall
. What he is doing there is something of a mystery, as the Shoe Event Horizon
was reached long ago and the survivors of the famine have long since evolved into bird people and set up home inside a fifteen-mile high statue of Arthur Dent. His foot-warriors capture Arthur Dent and three Lintilla clones, who are threatened by Hurtenflurst to be "revoked. K-I-L-L-E-D, revoked". He then proceeds to show them a film about the activities of the Dolmansaxlil Shoe Corporation, which is interrupted by Marvin, who has cut the power in order to rescue Arthur and the Lintillas.
He appeared in Fit the Eleventh of the original radio series, and was played by Marc Smith. He has not appeared in any versions after this.
Hotblack Desiato is the ajuitar keyboard player of the rock group Disaster Area, claimed to be the loudest band in the universe, and in fact the loudest sound of any kind, anywhere. So loud is this band that the audience usually listens from the safe distance of thirty seven miles away in a well-built concrete bunker. Disaster Area's lavish performances went so far as to crash a space ship into the sun to create a solar flare. Pink Floyd's lavish stage shows were the inspiration for Disaster Area. (Incidentally, Douglas Adams was credited for coming up with the title of Pink Floyd's 1994 album The Division Bell.) At the time when the main characters meet him, in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Hotblack is spending a year dead "for tax reasons", though he is still psychically alive (He is described in the book as being connected to a "death support system" and communicates only by supernatural means). The members of "Pink Floyd" have in 1978 (two years prior to the publication of the book) had to spend exactly one year outside of Great Britain, also for tax reasons.
The character is named after an estate agency based in Islington, with branches throughout North London; Adams said he was struggling to find a name for the character and, spotting a Hotblack Desiato sign, liked the name so much he "nearly crashed the car" and eventually telephoned to ask permission to use the firm's name for a character. Apparently, the firm's staff later received phone calls telling them they had a nerve naming their company after Adams's character.
The Disaster Area sub-plot was first heard in the LP album adaptations and later in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe. It replaces the Haggunenon material from the Fit the Sixth in the radio series. The character appears in episode five, and his ship in episode six of the TV series. He does not have any lines (due to being technically dead), and is played by Barry Frank Warren.
The B-side of the 7-inch single of the Hitchhiker's Guide TV Series theme music featured a performance of a song entitled Only The End Of The World Again, credited to 'Disaster Area'.
is a semi-insane missionary living amongst the Jatravartid
people of Viltvodle VI, and a former space pirate
. (It was presumably during his time as a pirate that he lost his legs and had them replaced with telescoping mechanical spider appendages). He wears thick glasses, which make his eyes appear normal when worn; however, when he removes the glasses, he appears to have shrunken black pits where his eyes should be. He seems to be a religious leader on that planet, preaching about the Coming of the Great White Handkerchief
. Hence, his sermons end with the words "Bless You' rather than "Amen". (See Jatravartids
He also ran against Zaphod Beeblebrox in the campaign for President of the Galaxy with the campaign slogan "Don't Vote For Stupid," but lost, and has remained bitter about it ever since. In the film he is seeking the point-of-view gun to further his religion's acceptance (presumably), and he takes one of Zaphod's two heads as hostage to ensure his help.
Although the character existed already, he was greatly expanded upon by Adams for the 2005 movie. Quoting Robbie Stamp: "All the substantive new ideas in the movie, Humma, the Point of View Gun and the "paddle slapping sequence" on Vogsphere are brand new Douglas ideas written especially for the movie by him.
is said to be the founder of the Hitchhiker's Guide, who "established its
fundamental principles of honesty and idealism, and went bust." Later, after much soul-searching, he re-established the Guide with its "principles of honesty and idealism and where you could stuff them both, and went on to lead the Guide to its first major commercial success."
He is mentioned in Life, the Universe and Everything. He did not make the Tertiary Phase of the radio series, but was mentioned in Fit the Twenty-Fourth of the Quintessential Phase.
Ix is the childhood nickname of Ford Prefect, since his name in the native language of his father, who was from Betelgeuse 7, was unpronounceable in the language of his adopted home planet, Betelgeuse 5. In English, Ix translates to "boy who is not able to satisfactorily able to explain what a Hrung is, nor why it should choose to collapse on Betelgeuse 7". See the Ford Prefect
article for further details. It should be noted that the character of Ford Prefect is not in any way a minor character in Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy
, but one of the protagonists.
His High Judgmental Supremacy, Judiciary Pag
, L.I.V.R. (the Learned, Impartial, and Very Relaxed) was the Chairman of the Board of Judges at the Krikkit War
Crimes Trial. He privately called himself Zipo Bibrok 5 × 108
(which is five hundred million, or half a billion in short-scale terminology
It was Judiciary Pag's idea that the people of Krikkit be permanently sealed in a Slo-Time envelope, and the seal could only be broken by bringing a special Key to the Lock. When the rest of the universe had ended, the seal would be broken and Krikkit could continue a solitary existence in the universe. This judgement seemed to please everybody except the people of Krikkit themselves, but the only alternative was to face annihilation.
Pag's real name shares some similarities with that of Zaphod Beeblebrox, suggesting that he may be a distant ancestor of Zaphod, though, due to an "an accident with a contraceptive and a time machine", Zaphod's ancestors are actually his descendants.
He is played on radio by Rupert Degas, and appears in Fit the Fifteenth.
Karl Mueller operates a nightclub, Club Alpha, in New York City
. He is German with a Greek mother, and was handed the running of the club by his brother Stavro Mueller, who renamed Club Alpha with his own name. He appears in Mostly Harmless
, in the storyline regarding the final death of Agrajag
Ford, Arthur, Trillian and Slartibartfast meet a group of murderous Krikkiters on the surface of their planet. Away from the influence of Hactar, they are troubled by their Elders wanting to destroy the Universe as they are keen to have sporting links with the rest of the Galaxy. They appear in Life, the Universe and Everything and the Tertiary Phase of the radio series.
Mrs Enid Kapelsen
An old woman from Boston who rediscovers purpose in life by seeing Arthur and Fenchurch flying (and performing "other activities") outside the aeroplane within which she is flying to Heathrow. Witnessing this, she became enlightened, and realized that everything she had ever been taught was varyingly incorrect. She annoys the flight attendants by continually pressing her call button for reasons such as "the child in front was making milk come out of his nose." Later she ends up seated next to Arthur and Fenchurch on another aeroplane en route from Los Angeles to London (though in the radio series adaptation, she flies with Arthur and Fenchurch on a flight from London to Los Angeles).
She was played by Margaret Robertson in Fit the Twenty-First during the Quandary Phase.
Know-Nothing Bozo the Non-Wonder Dog
A dog belonging to advertiser Will Smithers which was so stupid that it was incapable of eating the right dog food on camera, even when engine oil was poured on the wrong food. It was so named because its hair stuck upright on its head in a way that resembled Ronald Reagan
(The dog also had an adverse reaction whenever someone said the word "commies
"). Bozo barked at Arthur whilst he considered entering the Horse and Groom pub on his return to Earth in So Long and Thanks for all the Fish
is one of the Vogons
, directing Jeltz's Vogon Constructor Fleet during the demolition of Earth and enforcing the galaxy's bureaucracy.
Lady Cynthia Fitzmelton
Lady Cynthia Fitzmelton is described in the original radio script as "a sort of Margaret Thatcher, Penelope Keith character." She is responsible for christening the "very splendid and worthwhile yellow bulldozer" which knocks down Arthur Dent's house in "cruddy Cottington", and it gives her "great pleasure" to make a "very splendid and worthwhile" speech immediately beforehand.
She only appears in Fit the First of the radio series, where she was voiced by Jo Kendall. Her "very splendid and worthwhile" lines were entirely dropped from later versions.
Lajestic Vantrashell of Lob
Lajestic Vantrashell of Lob is a small man with a strange hat who guards God's Final Message to His Creation, and who sells Arthur and Fenchurch a ticket to it before passing them on a scooter and imploring them to "keep to the left". Introduced by Prak in the epilogue to Life, the Universe and Everything
, he finally appears towards the end of So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
when we also realize that he has been a regular visitor to Wonko The Sane, who describes angels with golden beards and green wings, Dr Scholl sandals, who eat nachos and do a lot of coke
. He says that he runs a concession stand by the message and when Wonko says "I don't know what that means" he says "no, you don't".
was an ancient poet
who lived in the forests
of the Long Lands of Effa. His home inspired him to write a poetic opus known as The Songs of the Long Land
on pages made of dried habra leaves
. His poems were discovered years after Lallafa's death, and news of them quickly spread. For centuries, the poems gave inspiration and illumination to many who would otherwise be much more unhappy, and for this they are usually considered around the Galaxy to be the greatest poetic works in existence. This is remarkable because Lallafa wrote his poems without the aid of education
or correction fluid
The latter fact attracted the attention of some correction fluid manufacturers from the Mancunian nebula. The manufacturers worked out that if they could get Lallafa to use their fluids in a variety of leafy colours in the course of his work, their companies would be as successful as the poems themselves. And so, they traveled back in time and beat Lallafa until he went along with their plan. The plan succeeded, Lallafa became extremely rich, and spent so much time on chat shows that he never got around to actually writing The Songs. This was solved by each week, in the past, giving Lallafa a copy of his poems, from the present, and having him write his poems again for the first time. But on the condition that he make the odd mistake and use the correction fluid.
Some argued the poems were now worthless, and set out to stop this sort of thing with the Campaign for Real Time (a play on Campaign for Real Ale), or CamTim, to keep the flow of history untampered by time travel. Slartibartfast is a member of CamTim.
Lallafa appears in Life, the Universe and Everything and Fit the Fifteenth of The Tertiary Phase.
A customizer of starships to the rich and famous time travellers, from the second novel and the TV Series. Ford Prefect apparently believes that "the man has no shame."
Lig Lury, Jr
The fourth editor of the Guide, who never actually resigned from his job. He simply left one morning for lunch and never returned to his office, making all later holders of the position "Acting Editors." His old office is still preserved by the Guide employees in the hope that he will return. His desk sports a sign that reads "Missing, presumed fed." The third novel, Life, the Universe and Everything
, relates his visit to the Holy Lunching Friars of Voondon.
is a rather unfortunate woman who has (as of Fit the Eleventh) been cloned
578,000,000,000 times due to an accident at a Brantisvogan escort agency
. While creating six clones of a wonderfully talented and attractive woman named Lintilla (at the same time another machine was creating five hundred lonely business executives, in order to keep the laws of supply and demand
operating profitably), the machine got stuck in a loop and malfunctioned in such a way that it got halfway through completing each new Lintilla before it had finished the previous one. This meant that it was for a very long while impossible to turn the machine off without committing murder
, despite lawyers' best efforts to argue about what murder actually was, including trying to redefine it, repronounce it, and respell it in the hope that no-one would notice.
Arthur Dent encounters three of her on the planet of Brontitall, and takes a liking to (at least) one of them. He kills one of three male anti-clones, all called Allitnil (Lintilla backwards), sent by the cloning company to get her to "agree to cease to be" (although the other two of her "consummate" this legal agreement with their respective anti-clones). When Arthur leaves Zaphod, Ford, and Zarniwoop stranded with the Ruler of the Universe and his cat (at the conclusion of the second radio series), he takes one of the Lintillas with him aboard the Heart of Gold.
All Lintillas were played by the same actress: Rula Lenska. Lintilla (and her clones) appeared only in the final three episodes of the second radio series. Rula Lenska did return to the fourth and fifth radio series - she was first an uncredited "Update Voice" for the Hitchhiker's Guide itself and then played the Voice of the Bird (the new version of the Guide introduced in Mostly Harmless). Zaphod noted in the new series that the new book has the same voice as "those Lintilla chicks." The footnotes of the published scripts make the connection, confirming that the bird is actually an amalgam of the Lintilla clones, the solution alluded to in the second series. Lintilla and her clones (of which at the end there are now more than 800,000,000,000 - "800 thousand million") do make a re-appearance of sorts on the Heart of Gold in an alternate ending to the final episode (which can only be heard on CD).
The name Lintilla was reused for an adult-oriented multiple worlds talker, Lintilla, that opened in 1994.
In the original novel, Loonquawl is one of the two people who return to Deep Thought to find the answer to the Ultimate question. The other is Phouchg
is a cat, owned by the Ruler of the Universe
. He might like fish and might like people singing songs to him, as the Ruler of the Universe isn't certain if people come to talk to him, or sing songs to his cat.
Lord High Sanvalvwag of Hollop
A man who never married. Had he done so, and forgotten his wife's birthday for the second year, he would have globbered. This definition of globber casts doubt on the usefulness of Ultra-Complete Maximegalon Dictionary Of Every Language Ever
. (Life, the Universe and Everything
Lunkwill and Fook
are the two programmers chosen to make the great question to Deep Thought on the day of the Great On-Turning. Fook may also be slang for fuck (often used as a generous replacement.)
On TV, Antony Carrick plays Lunkwill and Timothy Davies plays Fook, and they appear in Episode Four.
On radio, the characters are just called First computer programmer and Second computer programmer, and appear in Fit the Fourth, and are played by Ray Hassett and Jeremy Browne respectively.
In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy movie they are merged with the characters of Frankie and Benjy mouse. Jack Stanley plays Lunkwill and Dominique Jackson plays Fook.
Appears wandering along a beach in Life, the Universe and Everything
, but no one needs him.
Majikthise and Vroomfondel
. They make their appearance as representatives of the Amalgamated Union of Philosophers, Sages, Luminaries and other Professional Thinking Persons
in order to protest a demarcation dispute
against Deep Thought
, the computer which is being asked to determine the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything, and to demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty. They maintain that the search for ultimate truth is the inalienable prerogative of your working thinkers
On radio, Majikthise was played by Jonathan Adams, and Vroomfondel was played by Jim Broadbent. In the television series (but not on The Big Read), David Leland played Majikthise and Charles McKeown played Vroomfondel.
The characters were omitted from the movie version.
is an entertainer who hosts at the Restaurant at the End of the Universe and the Big Bang Burger Bar (or "Big Bang Burger Chef" in the original radio version). His feelings about the Universe outside of his onstage persona are unclear, but he has witnessed its end over five hundred times.
His name is derived from a phenomenon used in rocketry.
On radio, Roy Hudd played him. On television, it was Colin Jeavons.
He re-appears in the final episode of the Quintessential Phase of the radio series, played by Roy Hudd again.
In Mostly Harmless
, it is Mo Minetti who had left, due to pregnancy
, being the anchor the USAM TV breakfast show which Tricia McMillan is in New York to try out for. Apparently, she declined, surprisingly for reasons of taste, to deliver her child on the air.
Murray Bost Henson
Murray Bost Henson is "a journalist from one of those papers with small pages and big print" as Arthur Dent puts it. He is a friend of Arthur's whom Arthur phones one day to find out how he can get in touch with Wonko the Sane
, and uses incredibly odd idioms in conversation, including such phrases as "my old silver tureen", "my old elephant tusk" and "my old prosthetic limb" (as terms of endearment) and "the Great Golden Spike in the sky" (referring to the death-place of old newspaper stories).
He is played in Fit the Twenty-First of the Quandary Phase by Stephen Fry.
Old Man on the Poles
Played by Saeed Jaffrey
in the final radio series, the old man on the poles on Hawalius
, tells Arthur some old information wrapped up as news, and that everyone should have a beach house. The character appears in Mostly Harmless
Old Thrashbarg first appears in the book Mostly Harmless
, as a sort of priest on Lamuella
, the planet on which Arthur becomes the Sandwich-Maker. He worships "Bob"
and is often ignored by his villagers. Whenever he is questioned about Almighty Bob he merely describes him as "ineffable." No one on Lamuella knows what this means, because Thrashbarg owns the only dictionary, and it is "the ineffable will of Almighty Bob" that he keeps it to himself. When someone sneaked into his house while he was out having a swim, "ineffable" was defined in the dictionary as "unknowable, indescribable, unutterable, not to be known or spoken about"
In the Quintessential Phase of the radio series he is voiced by Griff Rhys Jones.
Old Woman in the Cave
Played by Miriam Margolyes
in the Quintessential phase radio play, the smelly Old Woman in the Cave
in the village of oracles on Hawalius provides Arthur Dent with bad olfactory stimulation and a photocopied story of her life. This occurs in Mostly Harmless
is the author of several books on religious and other philosophical topics. Colluphid's works include:
- Where God Went Wrong
- Some More of God's Greatest Mistakes
- Who Is This God Person Anyway?
- Well That About Wraps It Up for God
- Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Guilt But Were Too Ashamed To Ask
- Everything You Never Wanted To Know About Sex But Have Been Forced To Find Out
Colluphid is also shown as the author of the book The Origins of the Universe in the first part of the Destiny of the Daleks serial of Doctor Who. The Doctor scoffs that he "got it wrong on the first line". The reference was inserted by Douglas Adams, who was at the time working as the show's script editor.
An early version of Colluphid was the character Professor Eric Von Contrick appearing in a December 1976 episode of the BBC radio series The Burkiss Way, which was based on author Erich von Däniken. "Spaceships of the Gods", "Some more of my Spaceships of the Gods", "It Shouldn't Happen to Spaceships of the Gods", were books by the fictional author who had a Gag Halfrunt-style accent and who is visited in the Adams-written sketch by the aliens to demand a cut of Von Contrick's profits.
Paula Nancy Millstone Jennings
Writer of the worst poetry in the universe, as portrayed in all media except the original radio series. This character replaces Paul Neil Milne Johnstone
, a real-life poet, who held the distinction in the radio series. In the film version she has moved from Greenbridge, Essex, England to Sussex. See also Vogon poetry
In the original novel, this is one of the characters who received Deep Thought's answer to Life, the Universe and Everything seven and a half million years after Deep Thought had been asked the question. The other is Loonquawl
is a representative of the cloning company responsible for all the Lintilla
clones. He arrives on Brontitall with Varntvar The Priest
on a mission to 'revoke' the three Lintillas there by marrying them to their anti-clones, each of which is named Allitnil
. The marriage certificates are actually legally binding forms that make the signers agree to terminate their existence, and the unctuous Poodoo may therefore be a lawyer of some sort.
After two of the newly married couples disappear in unsmoke, Arthur shoots the third Allitnil dead and, after tying up Poodoo and Varntvar, forces them to listen to a recording of Marvin's autobiography, so as he says, "It's all over for them."
Poodoo only appears in Fit the Twelfth of the radio series, in which he is played by Ken Campbell.
was a witness in a trial on Argabuthon where the Dwellers in the Forest were suing the Princes of the Plains and the Tribesmen of the Cold Hillsides. Prak was a messenger for Dwellers in the Forest sent to the other two parties to ask "the reason for this intolerable behaviour." He would always walk away thinking about how well-thought out the reason was, but he would always forget what it was by the time he got back. The white robots of Krikkit
broke into the court room to steal the Argabuthon Sceptre of Justice, as it was part of the Wikkit Gate
Key. In so doing they may have jogged a surgeon's arm, while the surgeon was injecting Prak with truth serum
, resulting in too high a dose. When the trial resumed, Prak was instructed to tell "the Truth, the Whole Truth, and Nothing but the Truth," which, due to the overdose, he did. People at the scene had to flee or risk insanity as Prak told every single bit of the entire truth of the entire universe and all of its history, much of which they found ghastly. Prak recalled that many of the weird bits involved frogs
or Arthur Dent
. As a result, when Arthur Dent came to visit him in search of the truth, he nearly died laughing. He never did write down anything he discovered while telling the truth, first because he could not find a pencil and then because he could not be bothered. He has therefore forgotten almost all of it, but did recall the address of God's Last Message to His Creation, which he gave to Arthur when the laughter subsided. He died afterwards, not having recovered from his laughing fit.
On radio he appears in Fit the Eighteenth and is voiced by Chris Langham, who had played Arthur Dent in the very first stage adaptation of the scripts of the first radio series, in 1979.
Pralite monks are an order that undergo extreme mental training before taking their final vows to be locked in small metal boxes for the rest of their lives; consequently, the galaxy is full of ex-Pralite monks who leave the order just before taking their final vows. Ford visited the ex-Pralite monks to Mind Surf and learned the techniques he used to persuade Mr Prosser to let him take Arthur to the pub, in the first novel, and later to charm animals on prehistoric Earth long enough for him to kill them for food and clothing.
Fictional former president of the US who was publicly known to have had an affair with astrologer Gail Andrews in Mostly Harmless
. One of his Presidential orders was the bombing of Damascus
or "Damascectomy" (the taking out of Damascus), an issue Andrews denied that she counselled him on. At the time of Mostly Harmless
Hudson had died for unknown reasons.
On the tri-d TV, Trillian Astra reports on the future wedding of Princess Hooli of Raui Alpha
to Prince Gid of the Soofling Dynasty whilst Arthur is visiting Hawalius in the final novel. The seer who is showing Arthur the future news in order to demonstrate the sudden lack of need for future tellings quickly changes the channel. Arthur says that he knows her and tells him to turn the channel back. The seer replies "Look mate, if I had to stand here saying hello to everyone who came by who knew Princess Hooli, I'd need a new set of lungs!"
Mr L. Prosser
is a somewhat nervous roadbuilder
who - perfectly reasonably - would like to do his job: building a bypass
right through Arthur Dent's house. Very little is known about the man except for his predilection for little fur hats, his marital status
(married), a desire to live in a small cottage
above the door (although Mrs. Prosser would prefer climbing roses
), a direct and very distant patrilineal descendant
from Genghis Khan
, and occasional visions of Mongol
hordes, which were a result of his nomadic ancestry. He unfailingly addresses Arthur as "Mr Dent."
After some negotiation (with Ford Prefect in the novel, the television series, and the computer game, but with Arthur Dent in the radio series) he is temporarily convinced to halt the demolition. This respite does not last, but he is eventually interrupted for good by the Vogon demolition of Earth.
Prosser holds the distinction of having the very first line of dialogue ever in the Hitchhiker's Guide canon, as he is the first character (not counting The Guide itself) to speak in Fit the First of the original series.
On radio, he was played by Bill Wallis and appears in Fit the First. On television, he appears in Episode One, played by Joe Melia. He is played by Steve Pemberton in the movie version. He appears in Fit the Twenty-Sixth in the fifth radio series, despite not appearing in the book Mostly Harmless, voiced by Bruce Hyman.
Prostetnic Vogon Jeltz
The Vogon Captain in charge of overseeing the destruction of the Earth, Prostetnic Vogon Jeltz is sadistic, even by Vogon standards. When not shouting at or executing members of his own crew for insubordination, Jeltz enjoys torturing hitchhikers on board his ship by reading his poetry at them, then having them thrown out of an airlock into open space.
Physically, Jeltz is described as being unpleasant to look at, even for other Vogons. Given that Ford Prefect describes Vogons as having "as much sex appeal as a road accident", one can only imagine how much worse Jeltz must appear. This may explain his disposition.
It is revealed in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe that Jeltz had been hired by Gag Halfrunt to destroy the Earth. Halfrunt had been acting on behalf of a consortium of psychiatrists and the Imperial Galactic Government in order to prevent the discovery of the Ultimate Question. When Halfrunt learns that Arthur Dent escaped the planet's destruction, Jeltz is dispatched to track him down and destroy him. Jeltz is unable to complete this task, due to the intervention of Zaphod Beeblebrox the Fourth, Zaphod's great-grandfather.
In Mostly Harmless, Jeltz is once again responsible for the destruction of the Earth, this time presumably killing Arthur, Ford, Trillian, and Arthur's daughter, Random.
"Prostetnic Vogon" may be a title, rather than part of his name, since during the second episode of the third radio series (Fit the Fourteenth), two other Prostetnic Vogons are heard from. Also, in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Gag Halfrunt refers to Jeltz as "Captain of Vogons Prostetnic" (although this may have been a play on Halfrunt's accent).
In the first radio series, he was played by Bill Wallis. On television, it was Martin Benson. In the third, fourth and fifth radio series, he was played by Toby Longworth, although Longworth did not receive a credit for the role during the third series. In the film, he is voiced by Richard Griffiths.
is the Vice President of the Galaxy. She is desperately in love with Zaphod Beeblebrox
, the fugitive President of the Galaxy, and he knows it, as she unsuccessfully tries to hide it. Throughout the feature film
, Questular alternately tries to arrest Zaphod for stealing the Heart of Gold
(even enlisting the help of the Vogons
), protects his life (when endangered by Vogon blaster fire), and at one point beseeches him to just give the stolen spaceship up. Questular appears to be the "doer", performing all the real functions of the Presidency, whilst Zaphod enjoys his status as the figurehead President. After Trillian
repeatedly zaps Zaphod with the Point-of-view gun
and he learns that she is truly in love with Arthur Dent
and not him, he and Questular end up together at the end of the film, Zaphod telling her "Let's trip the light fantastic
, babe." Questular is also severely jealous of Trillian for obvious reasons ("She's lying. She's skinny, and she's pretty, and she's lying!"), until Trillian and Zaphod part as lovers. In the early drafts of the film the character was male, and therefore somewhat different. In a deleted scene on the DVD, Questular expresses her love for Zaphod shortly after all the Vogons become depressed.
New York Hotel receptionist
In Mostly Harmless
Tricia gets garbled messages via the receptionist from Gail Andrews. Tricia interprets the message "Not happy," as meaning Gail Andrews wasn't happy with their interview.
Appearing in the second novel
and Fit the Seventh
the large, pink-winged, insectoid receptionist in the Megadodo offices points Zaphod using a petulant tentacle towards Zarniwoop's office, the one with a whole electronic universe in it, and is also bugged by Marvin who just wants someone to talk to. In the Quintessential Phase
, he directs Zaphod towards Zarniwoop's new office, having put on the old hippy act.
Originally prophesied by her father, Arthur Dent, after he hears a Vogon for the first time ("I wish I had a daughter so I could forbid her to marry one."
), a disillusioned, teenaged Random Frequent Flyer Dent
(the in-vitro progeny with Tricia McMillan) is found in Mostly Harmless
. The line is followed up in Mostly Harmless
and The Quintessential Phase
, the 2005 radio series adaptation of this book. The new Poe
-reminiscent black bird version of the Guide manipulates her (as it has the Grebulons and Ford Prefect), so she is indirectly responsible for the destruction of all possible Earths.
Early in Mostly Harmless, Arthur travels from planet to planet by donating to "DNA banks", finding that for semen deposits, he can travel first class.
In the final radio series, The Quintessential Phase adapted from Mostly Harmless, she is played by Samantha Béart (formerly known as Sam Burke).
leads the "Cataclysmic Combo" band at Milliways. His band—from the second novel—performed on the LP album/cassette re-recording of Fit the Fifth and Fit the Sixth of the original radio series, released as The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
. The role was played by Graham de Wilde
. Their song was also released as a single.
Described by the scientific community in So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
as a "Quasi Supernormal Incremental Precipitation Inducer," Rob McKenna
is an ordinary lorry driver who can never get away from rain and he has a log-book showing that it has rained on him every day, anywhere that he has ever been to prove it. Arthur suggests that he could show the diary to someone, which Rob does, making the media deem him a 'Rain God' (something which he actually is) for the clouds want "to be near Him, to love Him, to cherish Him and to water Him". This windfall gives him a lucrative career, taking money from resorts and similar places in exchange for not going there.
In the radio series, he appears in Fits the Nineteenth, Fits the Twentieth and Fits the Twenty-First and is played by Bill Paterson, who also played one of the Arcturan Megafreighter crew in Fit the Seventh.
is a hitchhiker and researcher for the Guide, whom Ford Prefect knows, at least in passing, and holds in some regard (Ford describes him as somebody who "really knows where his towel is"). He carries a special towel with nutrients infused into one corner, and barbecue sauce stains in an opposite corner, which can be obtained by sucking the towel (certain bits of the towel taste vile beyond all imagining, and for this reason, one part of the towel also contains anti-depressants to go along with the barbecue sauce, ostensibly for use when the vile nutrient-soaked end depresses him). He saves Zaphod Beeblebrox from a horrible death in the offices of the Hitchhiker's Guide (by taking him into the artificial universe in Zarniwoop's office), and is then kidnapped along with Zaphod and the left-hand tower of the Guide building by a squadron of Frogstar Fighters. In the radio series, he serves no other purpose than to provide conversation (and deliver the line "here Zaphod, suck this!") while the pair are travelling to the Frogstar; however, in the books, he tells Zaphod to climb out of the window onto the surface of Frogstar World B, which ensures Zaphod remains in Zarniwoop's universe and can survive the Total Perspective Vortex
On radio, he was voiced by Alan Ford.
The Ruler of the Universe
The Ruler of the Universe
is a man living in a small shack on a world that can only be reached with a key to an improbability field or use of an Infinite Improbability Drive
. He does not want to rule the universe and tries not to whenever possible, and therefore is by far the ideal candidate for the job. He has an odd, solipsistic
view of reality: he lives alone with his cat, which he has named 'The Lord'
even though he is not certain of its existence. He has a very dim view of the past, and he only believes in what he senses with his eyes and ears (and doesn't seem too certain of that, either): anything else is hearsay
, so when executive-types visit to ask him what he thinks about certain matters, such as wars and the like, he tells them how he feels without considering consequences. As part of his refusal to accept that anything is true, or simply as another oddity, "he talked to his table for a week to see how it would react." He does sometimes admit that some things may be more likely than others – e.g. that he might like a glass of whiskey, which the visitors leave for him...
In the radio adaptation of Mostly Harmless, Ford also meets Zaphod in the accounting department of the new Guide offices. Zaphod describes being bored by a man in a shack and his cat for over a year.
He was voiced on radio by Stephen Moore (in the original Radio Times listing he was announced as being played by Ron Hate - an anagram of "A.N.Other" or possibly "No Earth" - because the show was so far behind schedule that the role had not been cast when the magazine went to print).
is Fenchurch's burly, blonde-moustached, blow-dried brother. He picks up Arthur Dent in his car after he arrived on Earth at the beginning of the fourth book. Arthur and Russell take an instant dislike to each other but this is also the first time he meets Fenchurch
, his lover and co-flyer to be — albeit she is asleep or in a comatose
and only utters one word – "This" – then lapses back into wherever she is. Fenchurch also doesn't like Russell – he calls her "Fenny" which she dislikes intensely. He also tries to simplify her problems so he can explain and understand them better (for example, he tells Arthur that Fenchurch believes herself to be a hedgehog).
He first appeared in the book So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish, and when this was adapted to radio appears in Fit the Nineteenth, where he is played by Rupert Degas.
Safety and Civil Reassurance Administration Officials
In the story "Young Zaphod Plays it Safe
", a young Zaphod visits the wreck of the Starship Billion Year Bunker that has crashed on the planet with the best lobsters in the Western Galaxy. He is accompanied by two Officials from the Safety and Civil Reassurance Administration and an empty spacesuit, as they search for aorist rods
and a Sirius Cybernetics Corporation Designer Person (babbling gently about a shining city on a hill) who it turns out has escaped to earth. The Officials declare the planet ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha (Earth) must be made "perfectly safe".
Whilst asleep in a cave on prehistoric Earth, Arthur Dent dreams of visiting comedian Sheila Steafel
on the radio show Steafel Plus
on 4 August 1982
. Arthur, in his dressing gown, talks of missing Mars Bars, various types of tea, Radio 4's News Quiz
, chat shows, the Archers and Just a Minute. "There is nothing quite like Kenneth Williams
in the entire galaxy, I've looked!" Space, he says, is "staggering, bewilderingly dull": there is so much of it and so little in it, "it sometimes reminds me of The Observer
Adams wrote this segment specifically for Steafel's show, and Simon Jones appeared in character as Arthur Dent. Steafel can be regarded as a canonical Hitchhiker's character.
Shooty and Bang Bang
and Bang Bang
are Blagulon galactic policemen
. They pursue Zaphod Beeblebrox to the planet of Magrathea, whereupon they proceed to shoot at him. In the radio and television series, this results in a hyperspatial field generator exploding and throwing Arthur Dent, Ford Prefect and Zaphod forwards in time to the Restaurant at the End of the Universe. In the books, Arthur, Ford and Zaphod are saved from certain death when Marvin talks to the cops' spaceship, which subsequently becomes so depressed it commits suicide, disabling the cops' life support units and rendering them unable to breathe as they were described as being "methane breathers." They claim to be well balanced and caring, while gratuitously shooting everything in sight. Shooty writes novels (in crayon), and Bang Bang agonizes for hours to his girlfriend about gratuitously shooting everything in sight.
Bang Bang and Shooty appear in the first novel. Bang Bang was played on radio by Ray Hassett and on television by Marc Smith. Shooty was played on radio by Jim Broadbent and on television by Matt Zimmerman.
In the Illustrated Guide to the Galaxy, the pair are played by Douglas Adams and Ed Victor (his literary agent).
The pair were written as parodies of American cop show characters, particularly Starsky and Hutch. The characters are never named in dialogue or in the novels, but are named in the original radio series scripts.
In their six starships, the Six Men are the only people who have, as far as he is aware, the key to the improbability field that locks away The Ruler of the Universe. This occurs in Fit the Twelfth
and the second novel
Ran Club Alpha in New York, visited by Tricia McMillan in Mostly Harmless
. We are told that he was a Greek with a German father and has handed Club Alpha over to his brother Karl Mueller so Stavro can open a new club in London. In the Quintessential Phase
Stavro is an only child.
Strinder the Tool Maker
As Arthur is regarded as The Sandwichmaker from Bob on the remote iron-age planet of Lamuella, Strinder makes knives to cut the Perfectly Normal Beast
for his sarnies. From Mostly Harmless
and The Quintessential Phase
Another friend of Disaster Area's Hotblack Desiato, who Ford says agreed with him that Disaster Area was going to make Hotblack a star. Appears in the second novel.
The thing at the Resettlement Advice Centre on Pintleton Alpha
This character advises Arthur to settle on Bartledan in Mostly Harmless
, but is the telepathic Resettlement officer on NowWhat in the final radio series (voiced by Mitch Benn
Thor is a figure in Norse mythology. He first appears at Milliways, and is mentioned in Fit the Fifth of the radio series, Episode Five of the television series, and the book The Restaurant at the End of the Universe. He has no lines in either of these.
He next appears in the book Life, the Universe and Everything, at a party, where he is chatting up Trillian. Arthur tricks him into stepping out of the (flying) building by challenging him to a fight. In the radio adaptation of this he appears in Fit the Sixteenth, where he is played by Dominic Hawksley. Hawksley reprises the role in the radio adaptation of Mostly Harmless, the Quintessial Phase, despite not appearing in that book. Two other characters from the Restaurant - Max Quordlepleen and Zarquon also appear.
Thor also appears in the Dirk Gently novel The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul.
Tribesmen of the Cold Hillsides
These tribesmen fought with (in the epilogue of Life the Universe and Everything
) the Princes of the Plains in the land of the Dwellers in the Forest, to the detriment of the latter, for a really good reason, but Prak
cannot remember why.
was a speculative philosopher who invented the Total Perspective Vortex
basically in order to annoy his wife. His wife thought he was an idiot who needed to "have some sense of proportion", exhorting her view frequently. When he attached his wife to the Total Perspective Vortex, the shock of seeing herself in relation to the rest of the universe instantly annihilated her brain. Although he was horrified by this, Trin Tragula found some satisfaction in discovering that the one thing that a person cannot afford to have in a universe this size is a sense of proportion.
Varntvar The Priest
He has only four lines in the programme, accompanying Poodoo
and the Allitnils
in the conspiracy to destroy Lintilla's
Varntvar is eventually forced to listen to a tape of Marvin's autobiography.
He appears only in Fit the Twelfth of the radio series, in which he is played by Geoffrey McGivern.
was described as "a quiet, young student at the University of Maximegalon", who initially studied ancient philology
, transformational ethics
and the Wave Harmonic Theory of Historical Perception. Then, after drinking some Pan Galactic Gargle Blasters
with Zaphod Beeblebrox
, he became obsessed with the problem of what happens to all his used ballpoint pens
. Voojagig claimed to have discovered the solution, that they disappear to a world of their own, and claimed further to have worked on that world. The character was described as ending up in "tax exile" – and may have had a hand in "Zaphod Beeblebrox's highly profitable second-hand [pen] business." Also of note that when others visited the planet where Veet Voojagig claimed to have lived, all they found was a small asteroid inhabited by "a strange old man who repeatedly claimed that nothing was true, though he was later found to be lying
Vroomfondel and Majikthise
See Majikthise and Vroomfondel
War Command Krikkiters
Zaphod overheard the two War Command Krikkiters
in the Robot War Zones, discussing the lassitude of the Krikkit War Robots, saying The war, sir, it seems to be getting them down. They just seem to get a little tired and a little grim ... and then they sulk
. (Life, the Universe and Everything
Owner of a grey Porsche 928S (which Rob McKenna
has been blocking for 20 miles) with a sticker that reads "My other car is also a Porsche", Will soaks Arthur Dent (and fails to give him a lift) when he is hitchhiking back on Earth at the beginning of So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
. Will works in advertising and drinks in Arthur's local pub, the Horse and Groom and is owner of Know-Nothing Bozo the Non-Wonder Dog
A sperm whale
called suddenly and instantly into existence by the Heart of Gold's improbability drive, above the planet Magrathea alongside Agrajag (as a bowl of petunias). Incidentally, This creature has a very self-aware existential life of discovery which sadly lasts only a minute before it impacts the ground, leaving a large crater and quite a lot of atomized whale remains. It appears in the first novel, the TV series, the movie, and Fit the Third. Voiced by Stephen Moore
in the radio and TV series, and by Bill Bailey
in the movie.
Wise Old Bird, The
The Wise Old Bird
is the leader of the Bird People
. He does not like saying the word "shoe
", as he and the bird people consider it unspeakable. The Bird People live in the right ear of a fifteen-mile-high statue of Arthur Dent, constructed by their ancestors.
The Wise Old Bird appeared in Fit the Tenth of the original radio series. He was voiced by John Le Mesurier who was originally intended to play the character of Slartibartfast.
Wonko the Sane
aka Wonko the Sane
lives in coastal California with his wife, Arcane Jill Watson, in a house called The Outside of the Asylum
(which features interior features on its outside and exterior on its inside). When Wonko saw instructions on how to use a toothpick
on a packet of toothpicks
he became convinced that the world had gone crazy and so built the house as an asylum for it, hence the reversal of the interior and exterior. Arthur
pay Wonko a visit and learn that like both of them, he had also received a fishbowl from the dolphins (having been a marine biologist
and close to them). He also claims to have seen angels with golden beards, green wings and Dr Scholl
sandals, who drive little scooters, do a lot of coke
and are very wonderful about a whole range of things. Arthur and Fenchurch discover the truth behind this after they have seen God
's Last Message to His Creation.
In the radio series, he is played by Christian Slater.
Wowbagger, the Infinitely Prolonged
is an alien
who became immortal
due to an accident with an irrational particle accelerator, a pair of rubber bands and a liquid lunch, so therefore does not know how to handle being immortal. This is in contrast to the rest of the immortal beings in the universe, who are, in his opinion, "a load of serene bastards." He eventually comes up with a plan to keep himself busy: he will insult every living being in the universe - in alphabetical order. He appears in the third book, Life, the Universe and Everything
, while insulting Arthur Dent
with the phrase: "You're a jerk, Dent; a complete arsehole" (in the US changed to "...complete kneebiter"). Later, after Arthur escapes prehistoric Earth, Wowbagger shows up again in the present, but when he sees Arthur he says, "I've done you before, haven't I?"
Wowbagger is also present in The Private Life of Genghis Khan, where he insults Genghis Khan, provoking him to burn down large segments of Asia.
In the new radio series, he is voiced by Toby Longworth. In The Quintessential Phase, he finally reaches the end of his quest by insulting the Great Prophet Zarquon, who revokes Wowbagger's immortality.
Yooden Vranx is the late former President of the Galaxy, the direct predecessor to Zaphod Beeblebrox. Just before his death, Yooden came to see Zaphod and presented his idea to steal the Heart of Gold. He also convinced Zaphod to lock out one part of his brains so that no one could figure out why Zaphod ran for the presidency. Before becoming the President of the Galaxy, Yooden Vranx was a captain of an Arcturan megafreighter.
Zaphod and Ford Prefect first met Yooden when they were children on Betelgeuse. Zaphod had souped up a trijet scooter and he and Ford raided Yooden's megafreighter on a bet. After storming the bridge with toy pistols and demanding conkers, Yooden gave them both conkers, food, booze, and various other items before teleporting the pair back to the maximum security wing of the Betelgeuse state prison.
Zaphod Beeblebrox the Fourth
The great-grandfather of Zaphod Beeblebrox, Zaphod Beeblebrox the Fourth is one of two active characters in books who are dead (see also: Hotblack Desiato). When Arthur Dent inadvertently freezes the systems on board Heart of Gold at the same moment Prostetnic Vogon Jeltz attacks, the younger Zaphod holds a seance to contact Zaphod the Fourth.
Zaphod the Fourth berates his great-grandchild for being generally self-absorbed and learns of the ship's imminent destruction. He stops time so he can continue deriding Zaphod, who tries (rather weakly) to defend his life. Zaphod the Fourth saves the ship and crew to keep his great-grandchild and his "modern friends" from joining him in the afterlife and thereby ruining the experience.
When he learns that the ship had seized up to solve the dilemma of either making tea (in The Restaurant at the End of the Universe) or figuring out why Arthur would want dried leaves in water (on radio, Fit the Ninth), he solves these problems before leaving by either leaving a pot of tea in the Nutri-Matic Drink Synthesizer or by explaining to Eddie that "he's an ignorant monkey who doesn't know better", respectively. In the book Z.B. the Fourth approves of the tying up of all computer resources to make tea - unlike everyone else present on the Heart Of Gold at the time, including Arthur who originally made the request of Eddie.
As a final note, Zaphod explains that his great-grandfather is "the Fourth" due to an accident with a contraceptive and a time machine. Zaphod the Fourth, therefore, bitterly refers to his great-grandson as "Zaphod Beeblebrox the Nothingth" (Zaphod tries to counter this by referring to himself as "the First").
He was voiced on radio by Richard Goulden.
Zarniwoop / Vann Harl
works in the offices of the Guide, on Ursa Minor Beta
. When Zaphod travels to Ursa Minor Beta to meet him, he is informed that Zarniwoop is unavailable and too cool to see him right now. He is
in his office, but he's on an intergalactic cruise
. Zaphod subsequently discovers that Zarniwoop's intergalactic cruise has been spending 900 years on, (in Fit The Eleventh), Brontitall and (in Life, The Universe and Everything
) Frogstar B
, waiting for its complement of small lemon
-soaked paper napkins, and every single passenger has aged considerably despite enforced hibernation. Only one person, who was not a passenger, but who hid himself on the spaceship, has not aged – Zarniwoop. Zaphod subsequently learns that, before he sealed part of his own brain
, he was collaborating with Zarniwoop to find out who rules the universe – this being Zarniwoop's obsession. In the books, Zarniwoop is marooned on The Ruler of the Universe
's planet by Zaphod et al. and is stuck outside the only shelter for weeks in driving rain, because The Ruler is unsure as to whether Zarniwoop's desperate thumping on the door is real or not. At the end of the second radio series, he is similarly marooned, but this time by Arthur, with Ford Prefect and Zaphod Beeblebrox for company.
In the Quintessential Phase radio series, Zarniwoop is revealed to be the same person as the Mostly Harmless character Vann Harl (Zarniwoop is his first name), and a Vogon in disguise. He has escaped being left on the desolate planet and is masterminding the Guide's new all-powerful format.
On the radio, Zarniwoop Vann Harl is voiced by Jonathan Pryce. His casting was accidental – he had been hired to play a different role (the Ruler of the Universe, whose lines had apparently not been written in time). He was happy to return for the final series, however, when a lot more was revealed about the character, much of it appropriately sinister, Pryce now having become well known for playing villains.
is a legendary prophet
. He is worshiped by a small group visiting The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, and is old, bearded, robed, wreathed in light, has starry eyes and a crown of gold. His name is frequently invoked as a curse, specifically a substitute for "fuck", such as "Holy Zarquon's singing fish" and "for zark's sake."
It is only on our visit to Milliways that Zarquon does indeed appear - his overdue second coming - moments before the Universe ends. The host Max claims that he had done the show "over five hundred times" and "nothing like this had ever happened before".
He appears in Fit the Fifth, voiced by Anthony Sharp, in the book The Restaurant at the End of the Universe and in Episode Five is played by Colin Bennett.
He has a final brief cameo in The Quintessential Phase played by William Franklyn.
is an affable, yet quite stupid, swamp dwelling mattress
(probably of very high quality) who flollops around Squornshellous Zeta
and tries his best to cheer up Marvin the Paranoid Android, who became stranded on the planet after having one arm welded to his side and one leg replaced by a steel pillar which turns out to be of immense importance, with utterly predictable results. After attempting to make conversation about the weather, Marvin's life story, and the economy of Squornshellous itself, Zem offers that Marvin should be more mattresslike. Zem is also the sole witness to Marvin's abduction
by the Krikkit war robots.
Also note that "Zem" is the name of all Squornshellous Zeta mattresses, because as Zem puts it "Some of us get killed... but we never know which, and thus globbering" [A mattress noise expressing sympathy] "are kept to a minimum."
On radio, he is voiced by Andy Taylor.