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Sat 1 Dec 12 #1 
jmaxg
Contributor


Just a short one....

Ok, everyone says how Doctor Who is so great. I personally don't find the two-hearted bastard all that great. I never did. Something about how he seemed too much like us........hardly a great definition as an alien. Just my opinion.

BUT, the BBC did come up with a better character, I thought. The invention of Professor Bernard Quatermass.

I just saw, for the first time in 20 years, a movie based on Quatermass that was his finest hour. In America it was called "5 Million Miles to Earth". In Britain, it was called "Quatermass and the Pit".

Either way, it was a piece of classic science fiction with far reaching ramifications.

Quatermass himself? An extraordinarily talented human being. His IQ was only matched by his boundless efforts to include everyone in what he did......except for his profound, albeit unexplained, hatred of authority. Bernard Quatermass thought up projects, one after another, that more than challenged the UK government. But Quatermass himself fought, stoicly, for the inclusion of all possible connection between him and the people.

I totally loved this character and I commend the UK for inventing him.

By the way, the "5 Million Miles to Earth" or "Quatermass and the Pit" film or story? Look out for it. It's worth the trip.


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Wed 5 Dec 12 #2 
rmcmanus
Editor

Quatermass and the Pit was the first SciFi horror I ever saw.... on the sly, sitting half way up the stairs and peering round the corner through the crack in the door of the lounge.... still love it, and gave me and endearing love of all things scifi.... what you have to remeber about the good Dr though is that each of them have a distinct personality trait... so of the last 3 (for ease of reference) you have the lonely man who killed his planet, followed by the megalomaniac hidden behind charm and wit, and finally we have the fool....


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Thu 6 Dec 12 #3 
kevg
The Grumpinator

nowt wrong with megalomaniacs !!


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Thu 6 Dec 12 #4 
rmcmanus
Editor

sounds good.... Best I had was The Wasp Factory in my 6th form days


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Sat 8 Dec 12 #5 
jmaxg
Contributor

Great.....so am not alone.

I maintain my thoughts macca. It basically pisses me off that an alien can only be made acceptable if he's to act like us. Kind of defeats the purpose of depicting aliens as far as I am concerned.

"The Simpsons" seemed to have a go at that way of thinking in their first Halloween Special.......

Marge Simpson (after the entire family had been abducted by aliens): "You speak very good English."

Kodos: "We actually speak Rigellian. Which, by an astonishing coincidence, is exactly the same."

You see? In a pure state, aliens behaving like humans just doesn't make sense. That's why it's comedy.

I get the admiration with Doctor Who. This Gallifreyan likes us and prefers us. So he models himself after us. But that is not a testimony to us. It just means some idiot out there decided to be like us. It still gives no insight as to how a Gallifreyan thinks in a natural state or whether the decision by this particular Gallifreyan was a good idea in the first place.

That's why I like Bernard Quatermass (besides a totally cool name that stands the test of time), he positions the problem from our level and then works it out.......up, down, left or right. Quatermass tries to define them and does not give a rat's butt if they can define us. To him, that is not the point.

To me, that is the point.......the Quatermass approach........sci-fi from OUR perspective, not "theirs".


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Sat 8 Dec 12 #6 
jmaxg
Contributor

Anyone see "Star Trek II - The Wrath of Kahn"?

Remember Admiral Kirk's eulogy? "Of all the souls I have encountered in all the worlds. His is the most....."

*Kirk's lip trembles.....

"......human."

Oh really? Of all the species you have encountered in various galaxies and planets, THAT is the defining point?

What a crock of shit!

This statement of Episode Two of the original Star Trek movies was tempered in "Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country". But still, I always thought that the line, as scripted, in the original "Star Trek II" movie was unmistakably bad and carried awfully terrible implications relative to the standing of the "United Federation of Planets".


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Sat 8 Dec 12 #7 
jmaxg
Contributor

The Quatermass approach was different. Work them out, don't impose.

I like that.

I disagree the Professor Quatermass was a megalomaniac. For one, he didn't fit the typical definition.

He was, as far as the story goes, a bloody extraordinary human being.


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Sat 8 Dec 12 #8 
jmaxg
Contributor

Another British accomplishment to tell you about, although I bet you didn't know it was almost totally British.

A while ago in a forum, we were asked to come up with the best film of 2010. One of us then, USS Palladin, suggested a film called "Kick-Ass" and we all fell into line because we all saw it and agreed....an extraordinary film.

Just for the record......

The characters were created by a Scotsman called Mark Millar. From that, a movie was made that was totally British from beginning to end. The film's director was British, most of the actors were British, the special effects were British and it was filmed in Britain....the end product was sold to an American distribution company called Universal and so, it was always assumed it was an American production. Only, it wasn't.

"Kick-Ass" was made in Britain.


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Sat 8 Dec 12 #9 
rmcmanus
Editor

I never said Quatermass was a megalomaniac.... but I still liked him :) My favorite SciFi character though... Paul I liked the fact that his long time trying to escape had turned him into Seth Rogen.

Loved Kick-Ass, kin of glad Allen Moore put a block on hollywood ruining his work as it gave the other comic book writers a look in. Used to be that 2000AD was a training ground for all the greats, but that has ceased to be the case. Last chap I knew who was an artist for that comic ended up a hotelier in Ross On Wye.


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Sat 8 Dec 12 #10 
sally906
Contributor

Have never seen quartermass - stargate is my science fiction of choice and the wraith are as scary as I can cope with!

I thought the idea of being able to take over the world (from an alien perspective) was to blend in with us - then pounce when we least expect it.

The day the earth stood still, the thing, the blob and war of the worlds all had non human aliens in them.

Then there was Independance day, those aliens were not human either.

For the record - not a fan of Dr Who either - though my husband admits to lusting after one or two of his little female helpers!


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Mon 10 Dec 12 #11 
jmaxg
Contributor

Yeah, yeah....Billie Piper and that other one.....the elfan faced one that worked with Tom Baker and K9.

Still maintain that Doctor Who is a flawed sci-fi creation based on our own arrogance. I mean, for all the time he flitted about claiming he was better than us because he was "Gallifreyan", he sure spent a lot of time acting exactly like us.

The BBC scriptwriters will put up their hand and state "that's our fault" and, quite frankly, it is their fault. But they did do better. Quatermass was better.

Aliens thinking like us is a step down. Us trying to work out aliens is a step up.


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