Stories that inspired M.R. James

Twelve tales of terror recommended by the master of the genre!

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Episode 42 – Christmas bonus – The goblins who stole a sexton by Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens in a Christmas hatSeason’s greetings listeners!

We have a Christmas bonus episode for you here, an exclusive readings of one of Charles Dickens’s supernatural Christmas tales ‘The Story of the Goblin who Stole a Sexton‘ which appeared as part of The Pickwick Papers in 1836.

For more information on Charles Dickens and M.R. James, check out Episode 41 in which we talk to M.R. James scholar Jane Mainley-Piddock.


Episode 21 – The Story of a Disappearance and an Appearance

Story of a Disappearance and an Appearance image by Alisdair WoodIt’s Christmas Special time again! This year Will & Mike look at the one and only M.R. James story actually set during the festive season, ‘The Story of a Disappearance and an Appearance’.

This episode also features a Christmas Bonus in the form of an interview with film director Stephen Gray whose new adaptation of ‘A Haunted Doll’s House’ is available to watch online for a limited period only, starting Christmas Eve!

Our reader this week was Peter Ross and the accompanying artwork is by Alisdair Wood.

As mentioned in our interview, Stephen would like our listeners help deciding which story to film next! Please state your preference below.
Show notes

The image below shows the King’s Head/Arms inn which features in this story, as it looked in 1885.

The King's Head Inn, Bicester


Episode 6 – Count Magnus

Image of Varnhem Abbey, the site of the mausoleum of the real Count Magnus Gabriel de la Gardie.In this Christmas Special* Will and Mike get stuck into Count Magnus by M.R. James, and explore some startling questions:

  • What is the connection between Count Magnus and Ghostbusters 2?
  • Will sewing your corpse into the carcass of a deer save your soul from the devil?
  • Would Mr Wraxall prefer to have been shot in the balls by Robocop?

Answers to these questions and much, much more can be found in this bumber festive edition of the greatest and only M.R. James podcast! This episode features readings by Chris Savory.

Show notes:

* This edition may or may not feature Mike and Will singing an exclusive acapella rendition of ‘Oh Come All Ye Faithful’, accompanied by the choir of King’s College, Cambridge (spoiler alert: it doesn’t).


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