Fit the Fifth is the fifth episode or "fit" in the Primary Phase of the original radio series The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

Story Summary

The episode begins where previous episode ended, with the computer bank exploding. Arthur, Ford, Trillian and Zaphod wake up in a strange place, and assume it must be the afterlife. It becomes apparent however that in fact it is Milliways, the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, which is based in the far future at the exact moment that the universe ends. They dine, but are interrupted by a telephone call from Marvin. A waiter explains that the Restaurant was in fact constructed in the ruins of Magrathea. Meanwhile, Marvin has been waiting on the surface of the planet. After he whines somewhat, the four go down to the car park (where Marvin has been parking cars), and meet up with Marvin. Ford and Zaphod are transfixed by the spaceships in the carpark, and discover a totally black, totally frictionless ship. Stuck without the Heart of Gold, they decide to steal it, with Marvin's help.

When on the ship, they discover that it is out of control, and since the interior is also totally black none of the controls are discernible. They debate what the Question is, and Marvin reveals that he can read it in Arthur's brainwave patterns. Before he can reveal what it is, they are interrupted by the control panels lighting up suddenly and the ship coming out of hyperspace. They realise they are outside of the galaxy, and part of an intergalactic battle fleet.

Cast and Characters


Music featured in the fit includes:

  • "Melodien" by György Ligeti
  • "The Engulfed Cathedral" from Snowflakes are Dancing by Isao Tomita
  • "A Rainbow in Curved Air" by Terry Riley
  • "Wind and Water" from Evening Star by Fripp and Eno