The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Main Characters
Arthur is a perfectly common human being, he is introduced in the radio series as “a six feet ape descendant”. We learn a little more about him in the books. In the first book, he is decribed as about thirty years old, “tall, dark haired and never quite at ease with himself”. He leaves in a very unremarkable house in the english country for three years when the Hitchhiker’s story begins. Before he lived in London, but had to move out because it made him “nervous and irritable”. He works in a local radio. Of course he loves tea, and is not very at ease with women (Trillian and later Fenchurch).
“This must be Thursday. I never could get the hang of Thursdays.”
“I woke up this morning and thought I’d have a nice relaxed day, do a bit of reading, brush the dog… It’s now just after four in the afternoon, and I’m already being thrown out of an alien spaceship five lights years from the smocking remains of the earth”.
“… Is there any tea on this spaceship?”
“It’s only getting through me… a whole alien world, millions of light years from home. Pity it’s such a dump though.”
Ford is a researcher for the “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the galaxy”. He’s been jamed on earth during fifteen years. He pretends to be an out-of work actor, born in Guilford, and chose the name Ford Prefect because he thought it was “nicely inconspicuous”. Arhtur Dent is one of his best friend on earth. He is described in the first book as being “not conspicuously tall, his features were striking but not conspicuously handsome. His hair was wiry and gingerish and bushed backwards from the temple. His skin seemed to be pulled backwards from the nose. There was something very slightly odd about him, but it was difficult to say what it was. Perhaps it was that his eyes didn’t seem to blink often enough… Perhaps it was that he smiled slightly too broadly… He struck most of the friends he has made on Earth as an eccentric, but a harmless one…”
“How would you react if I said that I’m not from Guilford at all, but from a small planet somewhere in the vicinity of Betelgeuse?”
( To Arthur) “What do you mean you’ve met? This is Zaphod Breeblebrox from Betlegeuse Five you know, not bloody Martin Smith from Croydon.”
“I wish I had two heads like yours, Zaphod. I could have hours of fun banging them against a wall.”
“I read of one planet off in the seventh dimension that used as a ball in a game of intergallactic bar billiards. Got potted straight into a black hole, killed ten billion people.”
Zaphod is “the man who invented the Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster, ex-confidence trickster, part-time Galactic President, one described by Eccentrica Gallumbits as the Best Bang since the Big One, and recently voted the Worst Dressed Sentient Being in the Universe for the seventh time running” (episode 2). He’s got two heads and three arms, is Ford’s semi cousin (they share three of the same mothers ). Oh, and he has stolen the Heart Of Gold, the new Improbability Drive prototype ship.
“Look I’m here with cool OK? I am so amazingly cool you could keep a side of meat in me for a month. I am so hip I have difficulty seeing over my pelvis. Now, will you move before I blow it?”
“Hell, I’ve lost my adrenalin pills”.
“Ford : What is you’re after?
Zaphod : Well, it’s partly the curiosity, partly a sense of adventure, but mostly I think it’s the fame and the money.”
(To Arthur) : “Hey look Earthman. You’ve got a job to do, remember? The question to the Ultimate answer, right? There’s a lot of money tied up in that head thing of yours. I mean just think of the merchandising…. Ultimate Question Biscuits, Ultimate Question T-shirts…”.
Trillian (Tricia Mc Millan) is also from Earth. She’s “beautiful, charming and devastatingly intelligent” according to Arthur (she has a degree in maths and another in astrophysics). Zaphod met her at a party and took her away with him while Arthur was trying to seduce her.
“Same as you, Arthur. I hitched a ride. After all, with a degree in maths and another in astrophysics it was either that or back to the dole queue on Monday. Sorry I missed the Wednesday lunch date, but I was in a black hole all morning.”
“Zaphod, can we stabilise at X zero zero 547 by splitting our flight path tangentially across the summit vector of 9GX78 with a five degree inertial correction?”
“Hey, my white mice have escaped”.
Marvin is part of a new generation of Sirius Cybernetics Corporation robots and computers. Well, he’s a prototype whith Genuine People Personalities. Obviously he’s one of the greatest mistakes in all the cybernetics history. He’s got a “brain the size of a planet”, but he’s also paranoid and utterly depressed : “Life, don’t talk to me about life…”.
“Here I am, brain the size of a planet and they tell me to take you up to the bridge. Call that job satisfaction? ‘Cause I dont.”
“What are you supposed to do if you are a manically depressed robot? No, don’t try to answer that. I’m fifty thusand times more intelligent than you and even I dont know the answer. It gives me a headache just trying to think down to your level.”
“Making it up? Why should I want to make anything up? Life’s bad enough as it is without wanting to invent anymore of it“.