The Hanging Stranger, Philip K. Dick

The Hanging Stranger, Philip K. Dick

"The Hanging Stranger" is a science fiction short story by American writer Philip K. Dick, originally published in December 1953 in the magazine Science Fiction Adventures. It has been reprinted in several anthologies, and published in French, Italian and German.

It was adapted by Dee Rees into the episode "Kill All Others" or "K.A.O." for the 2017 television series, Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams.

A book was also released to republish "The Hanging Stranger" along with the nine other stories on which the Electric Dreams episodes were based.

 The protagonist Ed Loyce is a store owner who is disturbed when he sees a stranger hanging from a lamppost, but finds that other people consider the apparent lynching unremarkable.

He finds evidence that alien insects had taken over, manages to get out of town, talks to the police commissioner there who believes him, and after getting all the information about what he knew from him, explains the body was hung to see if any reacted to it, anyone they didn't have control over. He then takes him outside and hangs him from a lamppost.


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