I'm trying to find the original source story from which an episode of the CBS Radio Mystery Theater was adapted. The episode is entitled "The Intruder," written by James Agate, Jr., and was first broadcast on 27 Feb 1980. In the introduction, the narrator says that the episode was "inspired by a Jules Verne story," however, one Jules Verne expert, the late Brian Taves, author of The Jules Verne Encyclopedia, said the episode "has nothing to do with anything of Jules Verne."

The story involves a prominent scientist and his wife who are visited by creature from another dimension, masquerading as their son. They quickly learn that the visitor is an imposter after seeing him use a communications device. The imposter says that the people of his planet are dying out, and that they need women to perpetuate their race; their son will be returned only if the mother accompanies him to the other dimension. The imposter is later killed in an accident involving a particle accelerator, and the real son returns, barely aware that time had passed.

Does this sound like a story from another writer (not Verne), perhaps H. G. Wells?

  • I guess it could be tough unless there's a specific quote from the author, remember The Lion King was (allegedly) inspired by Hamlet (more upbeat ending though). Feb 15, 2022 at 5:58
  • THX, Yes, a search on character names (Phillip Melville, Dorothy, Robby, Trevor), distinctive phrases (catalytic egg, astro-electronic, transponder), have turned up nothing. Some phrases (betatron, synchotron, cosmotron) seem pretty up-to-date for 1980 -- as if they had been updated for the episode. There's really not much else here to provide a foothold.
    – jdscomms
    Feb 15, 2022 at 6:28
  • More abstractly, aspects of the plot that seem possibly distinctive are: (1) an alien from another dimension passing itself off as the son of (2) two brilliant parents; (3) The alien holding the real son hostage in the other dimension, (4) with some trans-dimensional communication between the two; (5) Allowing the son to return only if the mother accompanies the alien to his other dimension to save his species because of her brains and body.
    – jdscomms
    Feb 15, 2022 at 6:45
  • "Inspired by" doesn't mean "an adaptation of". Maybe it's just what it says on the tin. Feb 15, 2022 at 16:13
  • Yes, but in that case, I'd like to find the story that inspired it. It's doubtful it was just generally inspired by the works of Verne.
    – jdscomms
    Feb 15, 2022 at 16:39


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