Episode Five of The Hanna Jo Stories, a children’s adventure series from the Blue Towel Radio Theatre. Hanna Jo and her friends find themselves drawn into a mysterious mixed-up land, where they and many old friends face imminent disaster.
Production Notes: Episode Five of The Hanna Jo Stories was a significant one for many reasons. It’s the longest story we’ve had, a good 13 minutes longer than the previous record holder (Episode Four). It drew from three different plots from the original tales I had told my children to construct this episode’s story – Music Land, Mixed-Up Land, and Robot Land. But most significantly, it is the last episode for the foreseeable future to include the two original stars of the series, Hannah and Nathan, who left Perth shortly after this story was recorded.
The series has always had a format a bit similar to Doctor Who, with a traveling hero who wanders from world to world, helping people, and occasionally taking a local inhabitant along with him. But this episode makes the connection even stronger by including an in-story process for the main character to completely change her voice in the course of the story. A goal in the writing was to give Hannah as Hanna Jo a very heroic and exciting scene to go out on, and I’m pretty happy with the result.
Nathan plays the robotic F-23 in this episode, with the same voice that he had used playing a robot in a series of dramas that we had performed together. I decided that I’d have Nathan do this, even though F23 was going to continue as a character and Nathan was not going to be available in the future, just because we liked his performance so much and we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to include it.
Behind the Scenes