This was Television on February 11

1938: The Beeb goes sci-fi

Less than a year and a half old, the British Broadcasting Corporation’s television service aired what is, by some accounts, the first piece of science fiction programming in the medium’s history. It was an abridged version of  Karel Čapek’s play R.U.R., famous as the work that introduced the word “robot” into popular English usage. The show was less than 40 minutes long; a decade later, in 1948, the BBC produced a full 90-minute adaptation. No known copies of either telecast exist today.  -A.D.

Today’s Birthdays: Jennifer Aniston, friend (44); Brandy, high-schooler (34); Eva Gabor, farmer (d. 1995); Matthew Lawrence, half-brother (33); Damian Lewis, double agent (42); Carey Lowell, ADA (52); Burt Reynolds, football coach (77); Sidney Sheldon, scribe (d. 2007); Kim Stanley, playhouse player (d. 2001).

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