And Another Thing


In a record-breaking event in 1980, the late, great Douglas Adams did a legendary signing at Forbidden Planet on Denmark Street, London – a signing that took up half-a-dozen pages in his biography.


It’s a very special moment for us to be welcoming Eoin Colfer, signing the sixth book in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy trilogy And Another Thing at the Forbidden Planet Megastore, 179 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, WC2H 8JR, on Wednesday 14th October 6 – 7pm.

Adams himself said that the Hitchhiker’s series deserved a sixth book to end the story on an upbeat note; Eoin Colfer, best known for his wonderful Artemis Fowl series, is true follower of Adams’ legacy with his views of the absurdities of life, the universe and everything. There is no better person to be taking Arthur, Zaphod and Marvin out into pastures new.


A lifelong Hitchhiker fan, he said, ‘Being given the chance to write this book is like suddenly being offered the superpower of your choice. For years I have been finishing this incredible story in my head and now I have the opportunity to do it in the real world.’ Prepare to be amazed!

To commemorate Forbidden’s Planet’s affection for Hitchhiker, Penguin Books are kindly offering a FREE signed poster to the first 150 guests.

Towels and Beeblebears are, of course, welcome.

Bookmark and Share

People Like Us… Like Schwag!

The cornerstone of successful retail marketing is simple.

When you break from branding, veer from visual merchandising, lose your leaflets and put off your promos, you come back to the basics: –

Free shit.

There’s nothing people want more than the chance to grab schwag.

In its thirty-year history, Forbidden Planet has seen every kind of geek – and an advertising campaign based on ‘something for nothing’ guaranteed that our nationwide birthday party greeted all of them. From Trooper to Pirate, Bored Bird to Lone Loon – they braved rain and roadworks and came down to see what they could seize.

Dedicated Opportunists were queuing on both mornings. There were Families, dads and kids together buying toys from Doctor Who. There were lifelong Collectors, less worried about the freebies, using their vouchers to secure big toys they’d been eyeing for months. There were Pirates, cheekily wondering if they’d wait an extra hour for the next batch of give-aways. There were Geek Girls, stocking up on their manga and Pro Geeks, disdaining the lesser-spotted high street geek and buying only the Limited Edition stuff from the San Diego Comicon.

Numbers of comics-readers were unchanged – but more people braved the Heart of the Department and returned, enthused, with a handful of free Batman badges and a shiny-new copy of Watchmen.

The Lone Loons were happy and harmless; the Cool Teens were everywhere and the Cosplayers were back – fabric-sodden but unstoppable.

Braving the weather, the Troopers from the 501st did, as ever, a storming job of creating energy – and much giggling embarrassment. Prevented from too much mischief by pavement barriers and soggy concrete, their spirits remained undampened – and their collective eye for a victim as sharp as ever,

And yes, even with wet armour, the ladies still can’t get enough.

And if the Trooper Groupies were many, then the Bored Birds were few – I did chuckle on seeing one of the girls of Vader’s Fist stocking up on her Stargate stuff while her husband rolled his eyes in mock-despair. Who says the missus can’t do this too?

A party may kick off with a fountain of freebies, but unless a retailer can put its mouth where its marketeering is, even generous goody bags are just so much biodegradable plastic.

When the bags have gone – what’s left?

I like making people happy – from the small child smiling at the balloon to the blushing girl cuddling the Trooper to the delighted hoarder with the bagful of new toys…

…seeing Thirty Years of Geek in one place, people spanning every type, archetype and (occasionally) stereotype is the ‘what’s left?’ question answered.

The cornerstone of successful retail marketing? It isn’t the company. It’s the customers.

Seems that Brian Bolland’s ‘People Like Us…’ brand from 1978 is still wonderfully true.