Study Guide

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Chapter 17

By Douglas Adams

Chapter 17

  • Arthur gets a cup of some drink from a Nutri-Matic machine, but that drink is not at all tea.
  • The Heart of Gold gets a series of recorded messages from the planet, which basically boil down to: thanks for stopping by, we're closed at the moment, come again later.
  • But when Zaphod continues to bring the ship down to the planet, another recording says that they're launching nuclear missiles at the ship and hope they come again in their next life.
  • That would be scary, except we know everyone will end up mostly okay, so we don't have to worry. You better be relaxed right now… or else.
  • The ship can't take any evasive actions to avoid the nuclear missiles. In fact, the computer Eddie just starts singing.
  • So Arthur does the only thing he can do and turns on the Improbability Drive, which could kill them. Then again, the nuclear missiles definitely will kill them, so he's got a point.
  • And then… then there's a new chapter.