March 25, 2021

Amazing Animal People #5: The Alligator People

Amazing Animal People trading card #5: Paul Webster, The Alligator People, 1959

Under treatment for amnesia, Jane Marvin (Beverly Garland) is administered sodium pentothal to help her recover her memories. In a hypnotic state, Jane recalls that her name is Joyce Hatten, and while working as an Army nurse, she had fallen in love with Paul Webster (Richard Crane), an officer recovering from injuries sustained in an air crash.

After being discharged, Joyce and Paul were married. Traveling by train on their honeymoon, Paul received a telegram that visibly upset him. At the next stop, Paul got off the train and promptly disappeared. Distraught, Joyce talked to the police, the Army and Paul’s friends to no avail. Finally she tracked down an old address from her husband’s university records.

After arriving in Paul’s hometown in the heart of Louisiana’s bayou country, Joyce found her long lost husband, but also learned a terrifying secret. Paul had been far more severely injured in the crash than he had let on. He had been made whole again with an experimental treatment to regenerate limbs using reptilian hormones, but there was a catch -- after a while, the patients began to take on the characteristics and features of reptiles.

Discovering that her handsome husband had tragically become one of The Alligator People led to Joyce’s amnesia.

Funanimal Fact: By this point in her career, Garland was used to encountering all kinds of monsters and beasts. For Roger Corman she battled a Venusian vegetable creature (It Conquered the World, 1956) and a space vampire (Not of This Earth, 1957). In The Alligator People, Beverly worked with real ‘gators:

One scene required Beverly to walk through a swamp infested with alligators. The swamp was faked but the gators were real. Incredibly, she wasn’t bothered about doing the scene. "I have worked with so many snakes and animals of all sorts, that alligators just don’t bother me. I worked with this incredible boa constrictor when I did Curucu, Beast of the Amazon, which was 20 feet long and didn’t bother me. Alligators, lions… I can work with them very well. They’re just another actor." [Deborah Del Vecchio, Beverly Garland: Her Life and Career, McFarland, 2013, pp. 64-65]


Richard Crane (?) and Beverly Garland in The Alligator People, 1959
"Honey, did you renew the supplemental dental insurance? I just got
slammed with a huge bill at the dentist's!"

Animal Crack-up (click on the text to see the punchline):

What do you call an alligator that always starts fights?

Alligator silhouette

Don't miss these other Amazing Animal People:
Lota from Island of Lost Souls | Paula Dupree, Captive Wild Woman | The Mole People | Leonora the Cat Girl

March 19, 2021

The Outer Limits of Spying: O.B.I.T.

VHS cover art, O.B.I.T., episode of The Outer Limits, 1963
Now Playing:
 "O.B.I.T." (Episode of The Outer Limits; first aired November 4, 1963)

Pros: Great script that explores sophisticated themes; Its message still resonates almost 60 years later.
Cons: Slow-paced and heavy on dialog for some tastes; The monster is awkwardly shoehorned into the plot.

Note: This post is part of the "7th Annual Favourite TV Show Episode Blogathon" hosted by Terence Towles Canote at his blog A Shroud of Thoughts. Stop on by for a panoply of bloggers' picks from classic scripted TV shows.

Now that we human beings are always on and connected via our smartphones and social media apps, it’s apparently time for all the appliances and devices we use in our daily lives to get in on the fun as well.

Here we are in just the second decade of the 21st century, and we’re already ordering our personal digital assistants and smart devices around like a drunken 23rd century starship captain. We can unlock and start our cars with our phones, change the house thermostat from the office, have Alexa order groceries for delivery -- your every wish is some device’s command.

But there’s a cost to all the convenience. The tiny corners of our lives that are ours alone and no one else’s business continue to shrink. Everything we do online is tracked and recorded. Not only is Alexa listening to us, but there’s growing evidence that our smartphone apps are listening in as well

We might want to reconsider allowing smart devices to infiltrate every aspect of our daily routines. If your car can record your driving habits for insurance discounts, what’s to prevent it from ratting you out to the DMV or the traffic cops? And what if your Fitbit decides you’re being too inert, and reports your lazy a** to your health or life insurer

Can’t or won’t happen? That’s what they said about the government indiscriminately hoovering up Americans’ emails and phone data, and look how that turned out

HAL 9000 smart-aleck refrigerator
"Open the refrigerator doors Hal."
"I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that. You've exceeded your caloric limit for today."

Nearly 60 years ago, The Outer Limits, a TV show known for its dark, horrific slants on sci-fi themes, presented its own vision of a dystopian surveillance society. Considering that back in those days, spying was hardly more sophisticated than pressing your ear to a glass held to the wall, the technology featured in the episode "O.B.I.T." (first aired on Nov., 4, 1963), is surprisingly sophisticated, computerized, and all-pervasive -- kind of like an unholy union of an NSA supercomputer and the ever-present, all-seeing, all-knowing Facebook app. 

Peter Breck stars as Senator Orville, a youngish, telegenic politician who has decided to investigate the murder of an army captain at a government research facility, as well as rumors of terrible morale problems at the center.

In the course of his investigation, Orville opens a Pandora’s box of problems that has culminated in murder: divorces, suicides and a toxic work environment that’s fueling anxiety and mistrust among the scientists and staff. To further complicate matters, the civilian head of the facility, Dr. Clifford Scott (Harry Townes), has had a nervous breakdown, and no one seems to know (or is willing to say) where he is.

Peter Breck as Sen. Orville, O.B.I.T., The Outer Limits, 1963
Sen. Orville (Peter Breck) is having a hard time getting straight answers.

After questioning the center’s staff, Orville learns of a new piece of technology that has recently been introduced, the Outer Band Individuated Teletracer (O.B.I.T.). Interim project head Byron Lomax (Jeff Corey) cooly informs the Senator that the device can tune in to any individual’s brainwaves and other bodily “transmissions” within a radius of 500 miles in order to monitor everything that they say and do.

When Orville suggests to Lomax that O.B.I.T. might be at the root of the center’s morale problems, Lomax responds like a classic bureaucrat: “People with nothing to hide have nothing to fear from O.B.I.T.” (Compare with former Google CEO Eric Schmidt’s statement about privacy: “If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it in the first place.”)

Orville is having none of it: “Are you that perfect Mr. Lomax? I’d hate to have that thing trained on me when I was cussing out my fellow senators, or the President of the United States, or my former law partner… to say nothing of my wife!” (It seems that politicians were more circumspect back in those days.)

The senator finally tracks down the elusive Dr. Scott. The head scientist tells him that he had been against the installation of O.B.I.T., but the Defense Department went ahead anyway because of its potential for dealing with “undesirable elements.” When Scott himself used the device, he saw something that looked like it came from a “nightmare world,” and suffered a complete breakdown as a result.

Harry Townes and Peter Breck in O.B.I.T., The Outer Limits, 1963
Dr. Scott and Senator Orville are in the dark, literally and figuratively.

It starts to dawn on Senator Orville that O.B.I.T. is not only a monstrous concept, but might just be a tool of actual monsters.

In addition to high concept plots, episodes of The Outer Limits typically featured some sort of horrific monster or alien. Producer/writer Joseph Stefano quirkily referred to his creatures as “bears,” feeling that their presence heightened the show’s awe and fear factors. This monster-of-the-week approach led some to initially think of it as a kids’ show, but if so, it was an awfully dark, brooding and frightful one. 

Often, the monsters functioned as window dressing for serious examinations of adult themes and current issues. In the episode "The Hundred Days of the Dragon," scientists of a hostile nation invent a way to mold human flesh, and agents proceed to impersonate the president and other high officials in a bid to take over the U.S. government. In "The Architects of Fear," scientists create a monster out of a human volunteer in an attempt to trick a world on the verge of war into uniting against an alien invasion. And in "The Sixth Finger," an inventor speeds up the evolutionary process in a simple working man, to the point where the human guinea pig has nothing in common with and zero empathy for crude, barbaric humans.

O.B.I.T. includes Stefano’s requisite “bear,” but it’s an afterthought in an episode that features some of the most sophisticated themes in the entire series, and one that’s uncannily prophetic about our surveillance society almost 60 years later.

O.B.I.T. plays out like a political junkie’s nightmare. Large chunks of it are devoted to Orville’s interrogations of the scientists and military people attached to the research center. The murder of the Army captain is but the tip of an iceberg of deceit, oppressive spying, and good old-fashioned bureaucratic inertia and incompetence.

The O.B.I.T. operator is about to get a neck massage -- and not a good one.
"If I've told you once, I've told you a thousand times -- stop sneaking up on me like that!"

Aside from the good senator, everyone (with the exception of the enigmatic Dr. Lomax) is compromised and afraid. The center’s military liaison, Col. Grover (Alan Baxter), tells Orville that he’s surprised that even a U.S. senator got clearance to see O.B.I.T. Under questioning, Grover admits that he doesn’t know who submitted the O.B.I.T. project proposal or who signed off on it. But now it’s popping up everywhere, including civilian industry.

Predictably, in the world of O.B.I.T., everyone is a suspect. At the beginning of the episode, we see the Army captain using it to monitor one of the scientists, who is complaining about his new boss’ lack of qualifications. The soldier duly notes the scientist’s “derogatory remarks against a superior,” and the number of times he’s made similar remarks.

Later, another harried scientist reveals to Orville that he was harshly interrogated and reprimanded for merely writing letters to his son. Finally, at the climax, even the upright, by-the-book military man Grover breaks down and admits to O.B.I.T.’s oppressive influence:

“It’s the most hideous creation ever conceived. No one can laugh, or joke. It watches… saps the very spirit. But the worst thing of all… I watch it! I can’t not look! It’s like a drug, a horrible drug, and you can’t resist it! It’s an addiction.”
Dr. Scott demonstrates O.B.I.T. to Senator Orville, The Outer Limits, 1963
"Just give me a second, I'm sure we can tune in WandaVision on this thing."

In this early ‘60s dystopian vision, O.B.I.T. is imposed from the top down. Today, we all rush to embrace technologies that leave little room for privacy. But maybe we still need to heed O.B.I.T.’s message -- that constantly being watched oppresses the spirit, and constantly watching is like an addictive drug.

In his excellent book The Outer Limits Companion, David J. Schow relates that the genesis of O.B.I.T. was an obscure book about privacy issues that Stefano had passed on to one the show’s writers, Meyer Dolinsky. Dolinsky was very much interested in the excesses that even free societies can indulge in when fear takes over:

“[I’m] also concerned that we do have restraints against extreme totalitarianism. The political focus of ‘O.B.I.T.’ is all mine; it’s a reverse on the H.U.A.C. [House Un-American Activities Committee] thing. These people, far from helping a free society, are really its worst enemy, in the sense they breed so much hostility and fear that they curiously accomplish the very thing they are trying to prevent. Witch-hunting is the wrong way to go about it.” [Schow, The Outer Limits Companion, GNP/Crescendo, 1998, pp. 117-118]

Ironically, Jeff Corey, who played the sinister, bespectacled scientist Lomax, had himself been caught up in the H.U.A.C. hearings a decade before, and spent most of the ‘50s blacklisted. O.B.I.T. was one of Corey’s first acting jobs after Pat Boone, one of Corey’s friends, went to bat for him and helped resuscitate his career. [Schow., pp. 118-119]

Alien monster from O.B.I.T., The Outer Limits, 1963
Hideous alien monster or Silicon Valley CEO? You make the call!

O.B.I.T. is not one of the original series’ best-known or more highly regarded episodes, at least in part because it comes off as relatively slow-paced courtroom drama with sci-fi touches. I suspect most viewers will readily pass on it in favor of far more notorious episodes like "The Zanti Misfits" or "Demon with a Glass Hand."

That’s a shame, because it has some of the best writing and acting in the entire series, and its themes are as fresh today as they were back in 1963. It’s also intriguingly layered, like a Russian nesting doll. Schow cleverly observes that

“The ‘peeping Tom’ nature of the O.B.I.T. machine neatly implicates the TV viewer as well, in Dolinsky’s slick plot about moral conquest. As the OBIT men spy on their subjects, they are in turned watched by the Outer Limits audience, who, by extrapolation, is probably also being monitored.” [Ibid., p. 118]

Well, it's not like the show's control voice didn't try to warn us: “There is nothing wrong with your television set. Do not attempt to adjust the picture. We are controlling transmission…”

That’s odd, I have this prickly sensation on the back of my neck like I’m being watched. And my laptop is acting kind of weird. What’s that on my Facebook feed… it’s a video of me, composing this post! What the…?!! [Transmission ended].

Where to find it: You can relive the awe and mystery of the original series on DVD, or individual episodes are available to stream.

March 13, 2021

Amazing Animal People #4: Cat Girl

Amazing Animal People trading card #4: Leonora, Cat Girl, 1957

Beautiful Leonora (Barbara Shelley), recently married to a dissolute playboy with a wandering eye, is summoned by her weird old uncle (Ernest Milton) to return to the ancestral home to discuss her inheritance. Along with the dark old house, the uncle informs her that she will also be inheriting the centuries-old Brandt family curse: to be forever connected with the soul of a killer cat, lusting for blood when the moon is full.

The uncle, who keeps a leopard caged up in his study, tells Leonora that the big cat is his other self. The old man frees himself from the curse and passes it on to his niece by willing the leopard to kill him. When Leonora starts to believe that the curse is real, she turns to an old childhood friend, psychiatrist Brian Marlowe (Robert Ayres), for help. But will he be able to convince her she is not a Cat Girl before it’s too late?

Funanimal Fact: Barabara Shelley, who starred in such classic horror and sci-fi films as Village of the Damned, The Gorgon, and Dracula: Prince of Darkness, made yet another cat-themed horror film in the early ‘60s.

In The Shadow of the Cat (1961), Shelley plays Beth Venable, the niece of a wealthy woman who has recently died under suspicious circumstances. When she is invited by her uncle to come stay at the estate, she gets caught up in a dark conspiracy -- which she unravels with the help of her aunt’s loyal tabby cat.


Still - Barbara Shelley and Paddy Webster in Cat Girl, 1957
Unfortunately, Leonora misunderstood the meaning of "I've got your back."

Animal Crack-up (click on the text to see the punchline):

What's a cat's favorite cereal?

Don't miss these other amazing animal people

Don't miss these other Amazing Animal People:
Lota from Island of Lost Souls | Paula Dupree, Captive Wild Woman | The Mole People

March 7, 2021

Alexis in Horrorland: Special Joan Collins Blogathon Edition

Poster - Dark Places, 1973
Now Playing:
Dark Places (1973)

Pros: Joan Collins is deliciously evil as a fortune-hunting seductress; Effective spooky atmosphere.
Cons: Christopher Lee and Herbert Lom are wasted in mundane supporting roles.

This post is part of the 2021 Joan Collins Blogathon, graciously hosted by Gill at RealWeegieMidget Reviews. Get on over to the site for a plethora of posts covering practically every aspect of Joan's career.

It’s good to be bad, at least in the movies. So many actors over the years have talked about how much they relish playing villain roles, and how much more colorful and rewarding those parts are, that it has become almost a clichĂ©

While there’s never been a shortage of juicy, villainous roles for male actors, women haven’t been far behind. From the man-eating vamps of the silent era to the sultry sirens of film noir to today’s female action badasses, fem fatales have always done well at the box office.

Actresses like Joan Crawford and Bette Davis became Hollywood icons chewing up men and spitting them out on the silver screen, and when the glamour roles dried up, they went right on being as bad as can be in B movies.

That career trajectory has played out many times, but few actresses have embraced it with as much panache as Joan Collins. Glamour has always been her trademark, but being dark haired and British, it was perhaps inevitable that she would be steered into fem fatale roles. Lucky for her, and us. If she’d been any sweeter, we’d be asking “Joan who?”

Collins’ bad girl image got an early boost with her role as the nefarious Princess Nellifer in the lush costume epic Land of the Pharaohs (1955). As Nellifer, she lies, cheats, steals and hires out assassins as she schemes to acquire Pharaoh Khufu’s (Jack Hawkins) wealth and power -- and she looks absolutely fabulous doing so.

Lobby card - Land of the Pharaohs, 1955
"Hey Jack, have you been stealing from my wardrobe again?"

Several years later, she tested for the title role in the even more epic film Cleopatra, but lost out to Elizabeth Taylor. Collins almost got the part anyway, when Taylor became so ill during production that it looked like she wouldn’t be able to continue. Collins’ agent told her to get packed and be ready to report to the set at any moment. [Joan Collins, Past Imperfect, Simon & Schuster, 1984, p. 191]

Of course, Liz recovered. Would Collins still have become the premier go-to villainess after playing Cleopatra, or would her career have taken a different path? We’ll never know, but that’s all right -- the path she traveled in this particular universe is fascinating enough.

On her way to the ultimate glamorous and venomous role -- Alexis Carrington Colby on the ‘80s primetime soap Dynasty -- Collins took a detour into B horror-thriller territory in the early to mid ‘70s.

The horror roles came in quick succession, starting with Amicus’ wildly popular Tales from the Crypt anthology film in 1972. As befitting the future Alexis, she was no shrinking (or shrieking) violet to be easily taken out by the monster. In many of them, she was the monster (although a very alluring human one).

In Tales from the Crypt, she kills her husband on Christmas Eve and gets the bright idea to blame it on an escaped mental patient who is loose in the neighborhood. In the Hammer thriller Fear in the Night (1972), she is the cold, calculating wife of a school headmaster, lurking in the background while one of the school’s new employees (Judy Geeson) is repeatedly attacked by a mysterious figure. In Tales that Witness Madness (1973), she battles an uncanny, sentient tree (!) in a desperate attempt to save her marriage. And in I Don't Want to be Born (aka Sharon’s Baby, 1975), she gives birth to a demonic baby.

Still - Joan Collins in Tales from the Crypt, 1972
Joan realizes she's on Santa's naughty list in Tales from the Crypt (1972)

Which brings us to the main attraction, Dark Places (1973), a fitting description of where Collins’ career was taking her at the time. Although independently produced, Dark Places greatly resembles the psycho-mystery-thrillers scripted by Jimmy Sangster for Hammer during the ‘60s and ‘70s (Scream of Fear, Paranoiac, Hysteria and Fear in the Night among them).

In this case, the writing team of Ed Brennan and Joseph Van Winkle place a mild-mannered hospital administrator, Edward Foster (Robert Hardy) at the center of ominous events.

Foster is the last person to visit with Andrew Marr -- formerly a wealthy country squire -- before Marr’s death in an insane asylum. Marr had been committed years ago after a psychotic breakdown caused by the sudden disappearance of his wife, two children, and the children's governess. 

Foster learns that Marr bequeathed his sprawling estate to him in gratitude for his companionship. He moves to the nearby village and begins to pick through the ruins of the ramshackle old house, aware of the rumors that the squire stashed a fortune in cash somewhere on the grounds.

Foster suddenly acquires new friends: Dr. Mandeville (Christopher Lee) and his sister Sarah (Collins), and the village solicitor, Prescott (Herbert Lom). The three, also aware of the hidden loot, attach themselves like leeches to Foster, suspicious that Marr told him of the money’s location before dying.

Still - Joan Collins and Robert Hardy in Dark Places, 1973
Sarah cases the joint.

Sarah goes into high vamp mode, shamelessly flattering the unfashionable, middle-aged man: “You’re much younger than I expected. Most of the men in this village are past it. It will be nice to have somebody younger.”

She offers to help him clean the place up, the better to keep an eye out for satchels of cash. Later, as she’s scheming with her brother, she positively purrs with mischievous contentment:

Sarah: “He’s nice, isn’t he?
Mandeville: “Can’t you keep your hands off anyone?”
Sarah: “He’d be quite attractive with £200,000, quite eligible.”
Mandeville: “You are a bitch Sarah.”

As Foster’s newfound friends conspire to get their grubby hands on the money, they are blissfully unaware that the spooky old house is having a profound effect, making the uptight, skittish man far more dangerous than outward appearances would suggest.

Still - Joan Collins and Christopher Lee in Dark Places (1973)
Dr. Mandeville (Christopher Lee) is concerned for his sister's moral welfare.

As you might expect, Collins gets all the best lines, and you can’t take your eyes off her as she exudes pure, mercenary evil. On the other hand, Christopher Lee and Herbert Lom are given little more to do than stand around with concerned frowns on their faces. Fans at the time might have been excited by ads trumpeting the names Collins, Lee and Lom, but the film belongs to Collins and the lesser-known character actor Robert Hardy.

Some fans and critics have disparaged Dark Places for building the film around the nondescript Hardy rather than one of the horror icons, but the story benefits from a mild-mannered everyman at the center of the action, the better to make the character’s transformation all the more dramatic.

Dark Places sets up an effectively spooky atmosphere that slowly builds in suspense as Foster putters around the mansion, encountering lights that shouldn’t be on, creepy dolls with smashed faces lying on the floor, hobby horses rocking themselves, and eerie voices and children’s laughter echoing through the halls.

Foster becomes a man doubly possessed: possessed by the idea of finding the hidden fortune, and possessed by Marr’s overpowering spirit to the point that he begins reliving the squire’s tragic past.

Still - Robert Hardy in Dark Places, 1973
Edward (Robert Hardy) wonders why he suddenly has so many friends.

Even as Sarah tries to seduce and manipulate Foster, Foster/Marr pursues his lost love -- the governess Alta (Jane Birkin) -- through the misty past. Unbeknownst to Sarah, who is blinded by greed and pride in her ability to reduce men to putty, the past will quickly catch up to the present, and tragedy will repeat itself with a vengeance.

Robert Hardy was an extremely versatile and busy character actor who appeared in scores of mostly British TV series and movies over the course of seven decades. His portrayal of Winston Churchill was apparently so spot on that he was called on to play the politician in three separate productions in the 1980s, including the highly regarded TV mini-series War and Remembrance. He also appeared as Minister of Magic Cornelius Fudge in several of the Harry Potter movies.

Hardy as the befuddled Foster is the perfect foil for Collins the man-eater. He seems perfectly harmless -- right up until he’s not.

Director Don Sharp helmed several Hammer horror films and thrillers in the 1960s, including The Kiss of the Vampire (1963), The Devil-Ship Pirates (1964) and Rasputin: The Mad Monk (1966). Other horror credits include Witchcraft (1964, with Lon Chaney, Jr.), Curse of the Fly (1964), two Fu Manchu movies with Christopher Lee, The Face of  and The Brides of (1965 and 1966, respectively), and the cult favorite Psychomania (aka The Death Wheelers, 1973).

Sharp’s genre movie experience, plus a cast of talented veteran actors (especially Collins as a slinky man-eater), plus a script that allows the eeriness to build slowly but surely, adds up to a surprisingly good psycho-supernatural-mystery-thriller.

Where to find it: Unfortunately, Dark Place's home video releases are out-of-print. Currently there is a watchable (but not great) copy streaming on YouTube.

Still - Robert Hardy at the climax of Dark Places, 1973
Edward has a pickaxe to grind.

Extra! Dame Joan Collins’ real-life encounter with the supernatural!

In doing some background digging for this review, I was surprised to find out that Joan’s experience with things that go bump in the night was not confined solely to the movies.

In a season two episode of the TV show Celebrity Ghost Stories, Collins describes an after-dinner party she attended in an old Venetian palazzo that was interrupted by an angry poltergeist. Guests were startled to find the outline of a body laid out on the dining room floor with almond candies. The butler told the guests that the outline was in the exact spot where a young wife had been murdered by her husband years before.

Then, in quick succession, a large knife flew across the room and stuck itself in the wall, and a large urn propelled itself across the floor. Everyone scattered, and Collins was convinced it was the ghost of the murder victim warning people away from the place where her life was prematurely cut short. See the clip here.

March 2, 2021

Amazing Animal People #3: The Mole People

Amazing Animal People trading card #3: The Mole People, 1956

The mutant humanoid underground dwellers known as The Mole People are slaves to a lost civilization of Sumerian albinos living in caverns beneath a remote mountain in Asia. They do the heavy manual labor for the effete Sumerians, including gathering the main food staple, mushrooms. Even though they are crucial to keeping the place running, the poor brutes are whipped, abused and exploited at every turn by the humans.

When a team of archaeologists discovers the hidden civilization and have to battle for their lives to keep from being sacrificed to a Sumerian god, the cunning Mole People seize the opportunity to rebel against their oppressive masters.

Funanimal Fact: One of the stars of The Mole People, John Agar, once told an interviewer that he was not impressed with the film’s script:

“Yeah, I remember too that there was some silly dialogue in The Mole People, and I went to [producer] Bill Alland and told him, ‘Bill, people don’t say things like this.’ He said something to the effect that he paid a guy a lot of money to write that dialogue, and I said, ‘Well, you got cheated!’”

He also revealed how the effect of men being dragged underground by the mole people was achieved:

“They put a rubber mat down over a hole in the floor; the mat had an X-shaped slit in it. They covered it with some kind of light material -- it could have been styrofoam -- that was supposed to be earth or gravel. Even when someone was being pulled down through from below, the earth was held up -- a lot of it could not fall through at once. The remaining earth would then cover up where they went through.” [Tom Weaver, Interviews with B Science Fiction and Horror Movie Makers, McFarland, 1988, p. 8]


Still from The Mole People, 1956
"What's the matter Bob, you're as white as a ghost!"

Animal Crack-up (click on the text to see the punchline):

How do you get a mole to stop digging?

Don't miss these other Amazing Animal People!

Don't miss these other Amazing Animal People:
Lota from Island of Lost Souls | Paula Dupree, Captive Wild Woman