Radio: Martians & Wild Animals

In Quito, Ecuador, one night last week, a radio station sowed a dangerous wind, and reaped a deadly whirlwind. Station HCQRX broadcast its own Ecuadorian version of the Orson Welles invasion-from-Mars program of 1938. Based on H. G. Wells's fantasy, The War of the Worlds, the program whipped along from newsflash to fake newsflash with Ecuadorian place names dubbed in. At first Quiteños reacted as thousands of U.S. radio listeners did ten years ago.

Rushing from their homes, they poured into the city's hilly streets in half-dressed hysteria. The station began to plead that it was only a hobgoblin story. But Quiteños...

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