Monday, 22 December 2014

Reverse the Polarity!

It used to be a running gag that the original Doctor Who was hamstrung by minimal budgets and dodgy sets, but my recent ambles down Memory Lane - most recently Ambassadors of Death, Colony in Space and Claws of Axos - refute that accusation. Ambassadors, for instance, features a military convoy being attacked by helicopter (no stock footage there), whilst Claws offers a large cast of extras and the exotically organic interior of the Axonite spacecraft, even if the true form of its crew does resemble a Michelin Man covered in spaghetti. One does wonder whether Jon Pertwee would have stayed longer, had later serials such as Planet of the Spiders managed to keep up that standard.

[Originally posted on LiveJournal. Please leave comments there.]

Friday, 19 December 2014

I Would, Wouldn't I?


Sorry to hear the news about Mandy Rice-Davies, blonde half of the Profumo dance troupe. I interviewed her in the early 1980s, when she'd moved back to Solihull, and thought she was quite a lady.

[Originally posted on LiveJournal. Please leave comments there.]

Saturday, 13 December 2014

My God, It's Full of Stars

Two of my favourite science fiction films in recent years have been Under the Skin and Interstellar, yet their story arcs couldn't be more opposite. The former opens from an alien perspective, shifts to inner-city Glasgow and retains that sense of extraterrestrial detachment throughout; the latter opens in rural America, heads off into deep space and is thrust forward by its embrace of humanity. In the first, the alien struggles with its increasing desire to understand those it wanders among; in the second, the crew battles to retain their human core in the face of the infinite cosmos, only to discover -- as Nigel Kneale once wrote -- we are the Martians.

Intriguingly, despite their mirror-polarities, both films reminded me of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

[Originally posted on LiveJournal. Please leave comments there.]