Tagged: monster

Dennis O’Neil: The Super-Villain In The White House

Barack Obama ComicsSo our national fingerwag has found its way through the mire of newsprint and cable television and into the Land of Comics. If you don’t know what I’m talking about you won’t hear it from me because I’m not joining the fray, my children, but it’s Obama’s fault.

Just like that rewarring in Iraq is Obama’s fault – obviously a plot to distract us while his armies of Kenyan invaders gather for the Big Strike. Or this global warming bushwah… more distraction. I mean, global warming? Last winter – that long and brutal season, remember? – as you were struggling to start your car in sub zero weather, did the globe seem warm to you then? Yeah, I thought not.  And those pictures of melting ice caps: in the first place, do you really care if some ice melts? Doesn’t it happen every day in your lemonade glass? And in the second place, how do we know it’s really happening, even? Anyone actually believe that the White House doesn’t have access to Photoshop?

Of course, Obama’s real triumph was the destruction of Pompeii in 79 CE. How can that be? you might ask. Wasnt Pompeii destroyed when a volcano, Mount Vesuvius, erupted and buried the city under tons of ash and rocks and stuff? How, youmight continue with just the tiniest edge in your voice, could our monster-in-chief be responsible for that?

Ah, the innocence of the naive! You underestimate the power of the monster’s evil – an evil so great that it shattered the constraints of time and hurled back through the centuries until it emerged by chance, unless Obama had something against the locals, in the heart of Vesuvius, arriving with the momentum gathered as it veered through the millennia, again shattering time. Obviously, the unexpected arrival of a gigantic lump of malevolence from the future upset the area’s cosmic balance and the poor volcano had to do something! I mean, wouldn’t you erupt?

By the way, none of this is depicted in the recent Pompeii movie and I don’t remember any of it being part of The Last Days of Pompeii, which I saw when I was a little kid. Of course not! The recent film? Well, You know Obama and Hollywood! As for the earlier movie, the one I must have seen in rerelease in the 1940s…maybe the backward-speeding malevolence stopped in 1935, the year the movie was first shown, just long enough to obliterate any traces of the truth that may have been lying around. Or maybe the movie guys just didn’t know about the Obaman meddling with geochronology.

I mean, we’re reasonable people here. We can’t blame everything on Obama.

How do I know about all this? Well, I’m not making any claims, but just suppose an angel came to me in a dream and told me what I’ve been telling you and maybe I believe the angel because I believe in angels.

Can’t quarrel with that!


Jen Krueger: Mindless Monster Movies

Before Godzilla had even been out for 24 hours, I was already hearing mixed feedback about it. Some people I know enjoyed themselves while watching it, but the more vocal reaction I’ve encountered is disappointment that the characters and story aren’t strong enough for it to be a good movie. And though I have to preface this by saying that I’ve yet to see it and could end up being disappointed by it myself, I do have something to say to the people that are complaining about the narrative shortcomings of Godzilla:

Get your expectations in line with the movie you’re watching!

Of course, I’m all for monster movies that have characters with dimension and stories without gaping plot holes, but when I sit down to watch something with a kaiju in it, all that needs to happen for me to be satisfied is for that kaiju to rampage. I want to see a city get attacked, and a fight ensue to take down the kaiju (preferably one in which another huge monster or some kind of huge machine is the kaiju’s opponent). If I happen to care about the fate of the humans that serve as the audience’s entry into the story, that’s honestly just gravy.

But as someone who’s usually complaining about hollow characters or narrative shortcomings in other blockbusters, why is it that I don’t take issue with similar problems when it comes to monster movies? Because it’s one of very few genres in which I think the characters are completely secondary to other aspects of the movie. Sure, superhero films must have set piece action sequences and exciting stunts to be successful, but they also must get the viewer to take the hero’s side in those sequences, because even a team of superheroes working together is still a fight involving several individuals against an antagonizing force. Monster movies, though, pit all of humanity against a terror from space or the sea, and the specific characters involved in the fight against them are basically incidental since they could be replaced by any other pilot, politician, or unlucky civilian tasked with the same plan to eliminate the kaiju.

Even with my (fairly low) requirements for a monster movie to satisfy me, there have certainly been some offerings that didn’t live up to my expectations. In its trailers, Cloverfield promised a monster movie unlike any I’d ever seen, but delivered on that promise by barely letting me see the monster. I expected unparalleled destruction, but got far too much time spent with people I didn’t care about running through tunnels. And despite the signs of destruction around the protagonists, I was too embedded with them to get the sense of large-scale damage and combat that I crave from a kaiju. With no real monster money shot, I left the theater underwhelmed and had to wait five years for one that really lived up to what I crave in this genre. With multiple kaiju and a bunch of giant robots, Pacific Rim seemed to never go more than fifteen minutes without showing one smashing into the other, and became the monster movie to which I’ll compare all future offerings.

While Godzilla advertises itself as a single kaiju movie and (as far as I know) has no giant robots as part of the scheme to take it out, it at least makes its single monster enormous and destructive enough to plow through bridges and swat away combat vehicles as if they were pesky insects. It’s enough to get me in the theater, and as long as the eponymous kaiju doesn’t have a silly weakness that brings it down too easily in the end, I’m sure I’ll have a great time watching it. And if all else fails, at least Transformers 4 is only about a month away. It may not have a monster, but it has a giant robot riding a robot dinosaur, which is obviously the next best thing.

Box Office Democracy: “Godzilla”

Box Office Democracy: “Godzilla”

I needed Godzilla to give me more monster fights.  Not monsters destroying cities or people running from monsters but monsters fighting monsters.  They knew that’s what I wanted too because sequences would build to those moments where two kaiju would look at each other, screech, and charge at each other only for the camera to cut away to some human doing some dumb thing or another.  I know that this movie already cost $160 million and that’s with almost no money spent on cast so I have to assume they put all the special effects in that they could but this movie made almost $200 million in its first weekend and I assure you I do not care what the humans are doing in Godzilla, not even a little bit.

The monsters look fantastic.  I tried to parse exactly how they made them through studying the credits and it seems to be some alchemical combination of digital effects and performance capture and I can’t stress enough how perfect and plausible they look.  It probably helps that they are usually in dark smoky environments but it works better than any attempt I’ve seen with the possible exception of Pacific Rim and this is certainly trying for a grittier, more realistic look than Rim was going for.  The climactic fights are over-the-top brutal but all the way through I was impressed at how it looked like these massive creatures had actual weight and interacted with their environment in consistently plausible ways.  A sequel has already been greenlit and I’m beyond excited to see where they go with these monsters.

The humans are another matter entirely.  I mean, I guess they always look like they have weight and they interact with their environment in a plausible manner but I’m not sure they ever really affect the story.  You could take the actions of every human being out of this movie and it would affect the outcome not at all.  Nothing the humans do to stop the rampaging monsters is successful on any level.  In fact, the climactic actions of the main human character, Lieutenant Ford Brody, only serve to save people from a mistake the humans made earlier in the film.  Godzilla is the title character and he solves the problem all by himself.  I never quite got invested in the drama they tried to insert with Brody and his wife or Brody and his son or Brody and some strange other child.  I completely failed to care at all about the faceless, practically nameless, other military operatives.  I only cared a little about Dr. Serizawa because Ken Wantanabe played him and I honestly can’t tell you what happened to that character in the third act.  Everyone just sort of fades away in the backdrop of better monster action.  As much as I want to see them expand on the monster action I want them to throw all the other characters in this movie and start over with every entry.

A common lament about film in the last decade or so is that every film is either a remake or a sequel and no one is willing to try new things.  While there is undeniable truth to this, Godzilla is proof that there are plenty of new ideas and good movies to be made from old properties.  This is as different from the original film as is possible with only passing similarity to what came before.  It would be a huge mistake for anyone to dismiss this as creatively bankrupt when it’s such a fresh take on a property that was honestly run in to the ground by The Toho Company some time ago.  This is a fantastic action movie and one worthy of praise no matter what its origins are.


Mindy Newell: The Name Of The Monster

“Must a name mean something?” Alice asked doubtfully. 

“Of course it must,” Humpty Dumpty said with a short laugh; “my name means the shape I am – and a good handsome shape it is, too. With a name like yours, you might be any shape, almost.”

Through the Looking Glass, Lewis Carroll

There was a time in my life when it was my silent, constant partner. I didn’t know then what it was; this thing had no name, and no one had yet advised me to challenge it, to call it out from the shadows into the sunlight. It hid in the cold dark crevices of my psyche, curled around my thoughts and dreams like a boa constrictor, never letting go, an anonymous thing. I knew there was something wrong, but without a name to call it, I could not voice it. Without a name to call it, I could not control it. Without a name to call it, I could not reclaim my self.

Yesterday I went to a comic book store for the first time in a very, very long time.

What the hell does that have to do with my struggles with it? A good question. A legitimate question.

The first time I discovered a store dedicated to comics was way back in the early 80s, during the time when this anonymous thing lived with me day after day, week after week, month after month. I don’t remember purposely sniffing it out – IIRC I just happened to be stopped at a red light on Broadway in downtown Bayonne, New Jersey. The storefront caught my eye; the windows were full of comics and some other stuff, but then the light turned green and I continued along my way.

But for the few moments while I was waiting for the red to turn to green, the thing had let go of me, or, at least, had lessened its grip. It wasn’t an “uh-huh” moment…

But very soon afterwards I was in the store and I wasn’t feeling weird, or odd, or frightened or any of that remote, sad, heaviness of the thing-with-no name which I carried with me – well, not so much, anyhow…

Yeah, not to put it through too fine a sieve – and, yes, it’s 28 years later – I think what I was feeling was comfort.

I looked at all the covers of the comics and the colors and the artwork and all the heroes – Superman, Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, Green Lantern, The Legion Of Super-Heroes, and all the rest – and I felt better. Okay, not kick-up-your-heels-and-do-a-dance better, but yeah, definitely better. Probably, as my therapist would say, it had to do with being suddenly face-to-face with the little-girl-who-was-me; she who was excited, who was curious, who read comics by flashlight after Taps underneath the covers of my bunk at camp.

I remembered her.

I was her.

I don’t remember what else I bought that day, but I do remember buying Camelot 3000, the groundbreaking maxi-series by Mike W. Barr and Brian Bolland, which imagines the prophesized return of King Arthur and his Round Table when the Earth is threatened by an alien invasion in the year 3000 A.D. I have always loved the story of the once and future king; it is the classic hero’s journey, told over and over again in many myths and in many cultures, the tale of the individual who is challenged to walk through the gauntlet, to vanquish the enemy, to achieve peace and knowledge even if cost is dear.

I read that first issue of Camelot 3000, and while I was reading it I escaped the hell of my life. And I kept going back to the comic book store and I kept reading C3000, and I bought and read other comics. I even wrote a “Letter to the Editor” that appeared in an issue of Green Lantern.

It was finally, and properly, diagnosed and named in 1990 as clinical depression.

And yes, naming the monster gave me power.

But I still hate it. Because it never really goes away, y’know? Even with medication and therapy, it’s always there, teasing me. “I’m still here. I had you once. I can have you again.” And sometimes it does, for a little while. The past month, for instance. But I have named it, and so its power is not what it was. And then, too, sometimes I think…

If the monster had not taken hold of me, if I had not had to struggle and walk through the gauntlet, I would have never walked into that comic book store in 1982 and started reading comics again. I would have never sat down on a rainy Sunday and written Jenesis, the story that led me to Karen Berger and New Talent Showcase and all the wonderful things that followed it. I would have never written Lois Lane: When It Rains, God Is Crying, and never would have been able to understand the pain of Chalk Drawings (Wonder Woman #46), which I co-wrote with George Pérez. I would have never gone to conventions and met so many wonderful people – this means you, Mike, John, Kim, and Mary. And you, Martha. And you, Bob Greenberger. And Karen and Len and Marv and Mike Grell and Tom Brevoort and Trina Robbins and Harvey Pekar and Joyce Brabner and Marie Javins. And so many others, some of who are no longer with us – Dick Giordano and Gray Morrow and Don Heck and Mark Gruenwald…

I hate you, depression.

I hate you with a passion that frightens me. You have fucked up my life in too many goddamn ways.

And yet…

I would not be here now without you.

I said once before, in a previous column, that nothing is wasted.

Even, and I hate to say it, clinical depression.


John Ostrander: Justified Complaints

SPOILER WARNING: I’m going discuss last season’s Justified which means I’ll talk a bit on what happened during it. If you intend to binge watch the show and haven’t done so yet, skip the column.

Last week, FX wound up its fifth season of the Elmore Leonard inspired series, Justified. It stars Timothy Olyphant as U.S. Deputy Marshall Raylan Givens, a supporting character and sometimes star of some of Leonard’s crime novels. You may not know all his books but a fair amount were made into good movies such Hombre, Get Shorty, 3:10 to Yuma, Jackie Brown and, as mentioned, the TV show Justified.

For those who don’t know: Elmore Leonard was noted for his spare style and his way with dialogue as well as his keenly drawn characters. Like Damon Runyon, Leonard liked the seamy side of people and expressed them with unique dialogue. In his essay, “Elmore Leonard’s Ten Rules of Writing” he said: “My most important rule is one that sums up the 10: If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it.” One of the other rules I found interesting: “Try to leave out the part that readers tend to skip.” Sounds simple but, oh, it is not.


Oculus Rift, Facebook, and Sharing With Crowdfunding Backers

OculusIt’s amazing how money changes things.  Norm McDonald once did a bit about buying a friend a lottery ticket for a Christmas gift – “You don’t actually want it to win…”

Oculus Rift, the latest uber-cool project amongst video game mavens, just hit the jackpot, and a lot of people are annoyed about it.  The VR-goggle system, designed primarily for videogame use, but bursting with potential other uses, got its initial funding via crowdfunding site Kickstarter, much to everyone’s joy.  But this week, the company made news when it was sold for a staggering two billion dollars.

Sounds like good news, right?  A rags to riches, Local Boy Makes Good story, yeah?

It was bought by Facebook.

You can actually hear the Internet’s face fall. (more…)

Mindy Newell: Zomb-O-Rama!

“I love zombies. If any monster could Riverdance, it would be zombies.”

—Craig Ferguson

We’re not the only ones obsessed with—ahem—[[[The Walking Dead]]]. Everybody seems to be in on it.

Here’s a very, very, short list of zombie movies:

There are lots more.

Probably hundreds.

Yeah, everybody loves zombies.

Everybody but me, that is. (Okay, I did love Shaun of the Dead.)

The first time I saw a zombie movie was way back when, and it was George Romero’s classic Night Of The Living Dead. Only I really didn’t see it because I was terrified and spent most of the time either cringing, with eyes closed, in my movie seat. Though it wasn’t the zombies themselves so much that scared me—it was the claustrophobic terror of being trapped with no way out that did me in.

It’s probably that experience that turned me off zombies forever. (Except for Shaun of the Dead).

Vampires? Love ‘em to death. My therapist would say that’s because Dracula and Angel and Spike represent the sexual fantasies that resonate with the underlying forbidden desires that lurk within my psyche. It doesn’t have anything to do with Frank Langella, David Boreanaz, or James Marsters.

Ghosts? The most popular theory professed by parapsychologists as to why people hang around after death is that he or she can’t let go of some relationship or need to right some great wrong. That’s gothically romantic. Especially since Patrick Swayze. Werewolves? Not so sexy or romantic. Okay, a million-zillion teenage girls on Team Jacob would argue with me. But they are sad souls—Seth Green’s Daniel “Oz” Osbourne in [[[Buffy the Vampire Slayer]]], David Naughton’s David Kessler in An American Werewolf in London, and the saddest of them all, Lon Chaney, Jr’s. Larry Talbot in The Wolf Man—for whom I can cry and with whom I can vicariously suffer the vicious vagaries of life as a monster.

But zombies?

No, thanks. I’ll pass.

(Okay, except for Shaun of the Dead).

Tonight (last night as you read this) is the premiere of Resurrection on ABC, which is based on the novel The Returned by Jason Mott and is produced by Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment. The Sundance Channel had immense success last fall with the French television series The Returned, which was an adaptation of Les Revenants, which in English means They Came Back and which is on the list that opened that column.

Will it be more zombies?

It’s Zomb-A-Rama!!!!!

“The Middleman” Exclusive Interview with Javier Grillo-Marxauch

In case you weren’t already aware, The Middleman campaign on Indiegogo has just a few days left before concluding. It has proven to be a great success already, but there is still time for fans of both the TV show and the comic to get in on the action.

The Middleman‘s creator, Javier Grillo-Marxuach, was kind enough to sit down with us and answer a few questions about the crowd-funding campaign and the incredible world he hopes to bring back to life with your support.

ComicMix: To begin with, how would you describe The Middleman comic and the TV show to someone who has never seen or read it before?
Javier Grillo-Marxuach: It’s basically Gilmore Girls meets Men in Black… uh, ok, that may not be the best explanation… it’s the story of Wendy Watson, a young art school graduate with few prospects who – after an encounter with a giant monster at one of her temp jobs, is recruited by The Middleman: lone operative of an organization so secret that even he does not know who they are. Joined as a team, The Middleman and Wendy fight all threats extra-, infra-, and juxta-terrestrial, dispatching monsters, aliens, robots and mad scientists while always living up to the Middleman motto “fighting evil so you don’t have to.”

CM: What inspired you to create The Middleman in the first place and what were the influences behind it?
JGM: At the time I wrote the original script – in 1998 – there were a lot of “monster of the week shows” on the air – like Buffy, The X-Files, Angel, Charmed, what have you – and I felt that the genre as a whole lacked a certain “genre awareness” – every one of these shows featured people fighting aliens and monsters and so on, in a hermetic universe in which there seemed to be no popular culture and all these mythologies needed to be explained fresh.  I thought – “if a geek lived in these universes, no one would have to explain zombies to her!”  Also, I wanted to bring a little optimism to the genre – a lot of these shows dealt with the idea that I call “the tragedy of heroism” the notion that being a hero will mess up your life (just ask Peter Parker) – I wanted a lighter, more affirming take on the genre.

CM: When you decided to resurrect The Middleman, why did you choose the crowd-funding route over more conventional methods? How has the crowd-funding experience been for you and the project?
JGM: Because we have an established property with a small, but devoted fan following, crowd funding has been a glove-like fit and an extraordinary experience.  I think crowd funding is a great way for someone like me, who has a property for which there is demand, but maybe not enough demand to catch the attention of the major studios. Through crowd funding we have about a thousand pre orders for our new book – to a company like Disney, which owns the media rights to The Middleman, that’s not a large enough amount to move the needle – to us it’s more than enough to make a great product that truly does honor to the characters and to republish our old adventures in an exciting way.  Our fans have really stepped up to make this new book, and the webstore reprinting all the legacy material, and the cast reunion/live reading possible – so in addition to everything else, the experience has been enormously validating.

CM: Your crowd-funding project has been tremendously successful. Since the campaign has already surpassed its goal, what stretch rewards can contributors look forward to at this point? If your current top stretch goal ($85,000) is surpassed, do you have plans for another one?
JGM: Well, we have five days to go as I write this, so I am not placing bets on getting to our second stretch goal – but it all boils down to this, if we go past the 85,000 we will put any additional money into maybe doing a new book in color, or additional middlebooks down the line… it is all about keeping the Middleman alive.

CM: If you could tell one story in The Middleman setting that hasn’t been told yet, what would it be?
JGM: The great thing about The Middleman is that we have established that there have been Middlemen all through history – thanks to the crowdfund, we  are going to reprint a one-shot called “Legends of the Middleman” which we originally put out in ’06, and tells the stories of barbarian Middleman, Victorian Middleman (in which he face “The League of Professional Jealousy” when Phileas Phogg, Van Helsing and Tesla team up to stop him from solving all their cases) and World War II Middleman… in the TV show we did a story about a cryogenically frozen Middleman from the 60’s (played fabulously by Kevin Sorbo!)… but if i had my pick of any setting… I would do a Gerry Anderson Supermarionation Middleman story in which he teams up with the Thunderbirds!

Our thanks to Javier Grillo-Marxuach for taking the time to speak to us. Be sure to check out the crowd-funding campaign over on Indiegogo while there’s still time. I think I speak for all of us when I say I’m very excited for The Middleman‘s return.

DISCLAIMER: The Middleman crowdfunding project is being curated by ComicMix for Indiegogo. ComicMix is a partner with Indiegogo.

Talking Mr. Rhee with Dirk Manning

Dirk Manning is slowly becoming a household name in comics.  Currently, he is putting together Tales of Mr. Rhee for kickstarter which is going on right now.  You can find it here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/devilsdue/tales-of-mr-rhee-hardcover-graphic-novel-by-dirk-m

I talked to Dirk about Mr. Rhee, his kickstarter experiences, and his recent schedule.

Joshua Pantalleresco:  So you had a rock band perform at your signing?

Dirk Manning:  Absolutely.   I go to the signing and they tell me that they are going to have a band perform.  The great thing about this is that I know them [Voyag3r].    I said to them as we shook hands that  “Guys, it’s me.  Remember that music magazine ten years ago and that journalist guy?”  They replied “No way…”

JP: It really is a small world.

DM:  It really is.

JP:  So I think you’re at $5000 now on kickstarter?

DM:  Very close.   We’re around 4700 in 8 days which isn’t too bad.  I haven’t had the chance to really promote this like I really want to.  I’ve been busy touring and the kickstarter has pretty much been moving on its own.

JP:  So if you describe your kickstarter experience in one word?

DM:  Nerve Wracking.

JP:  So where did the Mr. Rhee as a character come from?

DM:  Originally, Mr. Rhee came from me being contacted by a cable company wanting me to do a horror comic.  I offered them Nightmare World, but they told me they wanted something darker.

In Mr. Rhee, the world had survived an apocalypse.  It wasn’t like the walking dead per se, but it destroyed society.  I always like the Kafkaesque stories where characters have to deal with the tyranny of the majority.   Mr. Rhee comes from a world that was invaded for three days by monsters and horrors and everything imaginable.   Society rebuilt itself and believed that the monsters are gone.  Rhee knows better.   Of course the tagline is once you call Mr. Rhee, it is already too late for a happy ending.

Rhee combines the kafka type story with horror and monster with my love of pulp and noir.   It’s probably the one character that I think is associated with me and I’m happy it’s that way.

JP:   So what’s in the kickstarter?

DM:  We’re collecting Volume one – the first 13 eight page stories of Mr. Rhee, plus it’ll include other material.  There will be a brand new  prose story.  One of the bidders had the option to give me a song title and that I would have to write a story about it in Mr. Rhee, and that’ll be included.  There is also a hardcover edition exclusive to Kickstarter with the cover illustrated by Riley Rossmo.

JP:  I’m so jealous of that. Riley is like one of my favorites.

DM:  Mine too.  I’m looking at the pieces(hardcover and softcover) right now.  If we hit $15000 we’ll include a five page Mr. Rhee story that was available online for a short time.  It’s probably one of my favorite stories I’ve ever done.  If we go past that and all the stretch goals, what I’d like to do with Mr. Rhee is make a Marvel Handbook like who’s who.

JP:  That would be awesome!

DM:  There’s this one scene in Mr. Rhee for example where this woman is sitting in a limo that fans of Nightmare World will know who she is, but it would be neat to do a who’s who on her and some of the other characters that appear in the series.

Beyond that, I’ll be adding a couple of new tiers in the kickstarter as well.   The nice thing about doing Rhee on kickstarter is that I’m able to reward fans of the series with things like the hardcover.  Most of the things I do aren’t collectible.  There’s no way to tell if there is a first printing of a Nightmare World softcover.  But here, the hardcover will be released for kickstarter and that’s it.  Once it’s printed it’s done.

(Update: It is funded.   Check it out for stretch goals.)

Review: “Doctor Who: The Ice Warriors”

The Ice Warriors

Some of the latest releases from the BBC in their classic Doctor Who episodes are well timed, as they feature characters which made a reappearance this season. The Ice Warriors is a Troughton episode which feature the classic monster that made its return in Mark GatissCold War.

The Ice Warriors is one of the early adventures with missing episodes, specifically episodes two and three.  In addition to the usual stellar job of restoring the existing episodes, the missing parts are here recreated with animated footage, tied to existing soundtracks. The restoration team provides alternative style commentary tracks for the animated episodes, presenting archival interviews with Bernard Bresslaw and writer Brian Hayles, and readings of transcribed interviews with other cast and crewmembers.

Extras include new two new mini-documentaries on both the making of the original adventure, and the new animated adventures.  Commentary tracks are featured on the full episodes with with the cast and crew.  For the completist, they’ve even included the original intro  footage from the previous VHS release by Deborah Watfield and Frazer Hines, and the original restoration of the adventure, using photographs and a narration to explain the action, interspersed into the dialogue.  A special set of Who-themed episode of children’s craft show Blue Peter are included, featuring presenter Peter Purves, who appeared on Doctor Who as astronaut companion Steven Taylor.  Frazer Hines continues his personal reminiscences of the series which began on the release of The Krotons.

It’s a classic episode from the early run of the series, a first look at a popular villain.