Friday, June 30, 2006

More Fun With Eels


The Eel -- a movie I just know you'll love!

Now, THIS is the real thing, ladies, the film I was telling you about in an earlier entry. Shohei Imamura, the same director who brought you Black Rain,
created this delightful little movie. I have seen only two of his films, but they both contain critical scenes involving EELS.

This story, as you might guess from the title, has an Eel operative right in the middle of everything. The human recruit is a murderer who came home early from a fishing trip one night and caught his wife with another man. He matter-of-factly stabbed them both and then rode his bike over to the police, turning himself over and placing the dripping butcher knife on the counter. Frankly, I think this is the only part of the film that will interest Human viewers, at least here in the Middle West. Sex, gore, sex, gore and sex, you know?

(I’m sorry to announce, to those of you who still share the Human taste for action films, that there are no car chases or exploding yachts in the entire story.)

They fast-forward from here to his release from prison and his attempts to start a new life. Now, if you are a fish, this is where the story REALLY GETS INTERESTING. The guy is leaving prison with his parole officer, and one of the turnkeys comes running with a big plastic bag, saying “You forgot this!!!” Turns out to be the film’s main character, who has somehow talked the prisoner out of eating her. She evidently went on from there to talking the guards out of MAKING the prisoner eat her. “Pets are forbidden, but we just pretended it was ours,” the guard explains cheerfully to the parole officer. Here, then, is an operative who can talk a whole prison full of inmates and guards into breaking a rule on her behalf. This is EXACTLY the kind of negotiating skill I want EVERY ONE OF YOU to practice.

The parole officer does not object in any way as the prisoner bundles this AGENT OF HIS DOOM into his car for the trip home. You have to love it. Of course, this is a Naked Ape feature film, and the operative has absolutely no lines in the script. Much is made of the fact that the ex-con talks to his Eel and appears to believe that she is answering him. It’s another fine example of how human denial about non-human intelligence allows us to infiltrate EVERYWHERE, invisibly. We can even tell them what to do and they’ll do it, FULLY BELIEVING that their actions were THEIR OWN IDEA. Of course you also run the risk of having a really prime recruit bundled off to the laughing academy for talking to a fish. These people can never explain themselves properly. The ones not in denial about having been recruited have the sense to LIE.

Before long the operative is installed in a nice clean tank in a barbershop, making new contacts daily. From here the story becomes fascinating to US. I won’t spoil it for you; just go see it.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

A Special Project To Start On Now For Squidmas


THIS is terrific. Get out your needles, ladies.

I said NOW.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

"THE BEAR:" A Poem About Squid


"The Bear"

When my propane ran out
when I was gone and the food
thawed in the freezer I grieved
over the five pounds of melted squid,
but then a big gaunt bear arrived
and feasted on the garbage, a few tentacles
left in the grass, purplish white worms.
O bear, now that you've tasted the ocean
I hope your dreamlife contains the whales
I've seen, that the one in the Humboldt current
basking on the surface who seemed to watch
the seabirds wheeling around her head.

-- Jim Harrison


Now, this is a GREAT EXAMPLE of how I want you ladies to learn to read a poem. NEVER MIND the onomatopoeia, the meter and the blank verse format.

Narrative Structure: Mammal ingests aquatic creature and may or may not be changed as a result.

Narrator: Possessor of calamari and piscatorial consciousness, hoping to pass that on to the next creature that comes along.

Subjunctive motivation: It sure would have been sad to see that squid go to waste, but it didn't turn out that way, now did it? Happy ending.

POV: Obviously a recruiter looking to add mammals to the Piscatorial Collective.

Implied doubt: The recruiting effort may or may not pan out. The narrator, like any of us, can only hope that the bear gets the message.

Lyrical Focus: A poor, starving land animal that could learn to think more about THE OCEAN in order to enrich its sorry life.

Poet: "Jim Harrison" is the phoniest, made-up-sounding, overly-unobtrusive pen name imaginable. Which suggests strongly to me that the author is some sort of Blenny.

DO I SMELL OPERATIVE?


IMPORTANT NOTE TO MY READERS: This was sent by a Four Corners operative who did not give the full citation for this poem. This may be the effect of the desert heat on what is, after all, a fish. But I have no such excuse, being comfortably ensconced hundreds of feet below the Manoogian Mansion on a seventy-degree day after a nice rain. With that said, my web-fu remains weak and foolish: I cannot find the entire text of the poem or the publishing information. This might be only a third of the piece, or it could have been mangled in transmission from there to here. If the text is not correct, I apologize, and until I can get the rest of it I apologize for not having the complete citation.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Security Leak That Never Was


This remarkable item turned up in a paperback anthology drawn from an obscure fashion magazine, of all places. The author -- apparently one of Hank's operatives, as his name is "Pollack" -- ended the story with a plea that someone, somewhere, take notice of this stunning development. NOBODY HAS. You have to love it.

"Reef Or Madness?" starts on page 165 of The Revolution Will Be Accessorized, a book copyrighted 2006 to Aaron Hicklin, published by Harper Perennial out of NYC. It details the startling moment when a police diver making a routine sweep for medical waste in the Hudson River found a live coral reef not far from Chelsea Piers. Apparently the guy has tried in vain to get someone to notice and take steps to protect the reef.

OK, OK, they found one of our transmitting stations. So what? I find it impossible to get worried about this. New York actually has a decent environmental record; they've been making efforts to clean up the indescribably filthy water around the city, and re-introduce vanished species like the Blowfish. THIS IS THEIR REWARD. And nobody seems to be interested.

I love it.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Euell Gibbons Meets The Pismo Clam!


Here is another sterling moment from Stalking The Blue-Eyed Scallop, Euell Gibbons, David McKay Co., Inc., New York, 1964:

"At first bite I became a full-fledged convert to the Cult of Pismophagists...It is just a clam, but a clam refined to the absolute ultimate. The Pismo Clam is so good, and was once so plentiful, that it largely crowded other clams off the California markets...To hear of the way this vast wealth of clams was squandered is enough to make one weep. There are stories of local farmers gathering these clams, by the wagon load, by opening furrows across the beach at ebb tide with horse-drawn turning plows...Many a wagonload went back to the farms to fatten the pigs and chickens." (pg 192)

Evidently Gibbons, as tireless a collector of local color as he was a clam-digger, NEVER MADE THE CONNECTION between this story and the lemminglike mass suicides of thousands of barnyard animals along the Coast during that era. Of course, they were unlikely to realize that these animals were not crazed by lead poisoning or something similar and they were not, indeed, committing suicide. They had simply been SUCCESSFULLY RECRUITED, and it was their time to enter the sea en masse. If you call that "squandering" the Pismo Clams, Euell, that's all well and good. I have to disagree.

What a panic we could cause if we still did it this way. Look around you, ladies: teenaged girls are no longer allowed to walk the block and a half to church, even with pepper spray and a Rottweiler, because Mom and Dad think there is a serial killer waiting behind every tree. Imagine if they realized that their meatless Fridays could cause them to lose the entire brood. Picture those headlines. NATION'S YOUTH SLAUGHTERED BY GORTON'S FISHERMAN. FILM AT ELEVEN.

Well, I can dream, can't I?

Friday, June 09, 2006

THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON!


FIRST, A SIDE NOTE...

I have to say how impressed I was reading a recent issue of U.S. News And World Report, specifically Volume 134, #20, June 9, 2003. You know, the one with the school of Tuna on the cover. THE ONE I HAD SENT TO ALL YOUR HOUSES. This issue included not one, but two articles about us that managed to reveal exactly what we want the hairless bipeds to know, while totally concealing all related sensitive data, IN ONE OF THE MOST WIDELY-READ MAGAZINES IN THE COUNTRY.

UNLIKELY FRIENDS IN THE MIDDLE EAST

Let’s start with the short piece called "Baghdad’s Baptizers," written by Kevin Whitelaw, starting on page 32. I’ll get to the other piece in the next edition of the Notes… This is exactly the kind of thing I want to keep seeing in the major news organs, ladies. The article addresses the precarious survival of an embattled Middle Eastern religious group called the Sabaean Mandeans, making do in the Arab world and trying to, I guess, keep its collective head below water. The clear intent of the piece is to whip up anti-Arab sentiment by painting a sad picture of this poor, beleaguered minority who, the author hints, are PRACTICALLY CHRISTIANS, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD. Never mind that stuff. What I want you to notice and emulate is the way the author prevents Naked Ape readers from knowing whether these are just another put-upon fringe group or piscatorial operatives. The snippets of information on their culture sound halfway like us and halfway like the Naked Apes. As you read you can see that every item suggesting that these are operatives is counterbalanced by an item suggesting they’re not:

>> The item about how you can leave, but never join or rejoin their group, is essentially the opposite of our approach, in spite of everything H. P. Lovecraft says. But that could be disinformation, right?

>> The concealing clothes say "operative" to me. But who in the Mideast wears skimpy outfits?

>> The very fact that this hardcore group of river- soakers lives in the middle of an immense desert says "Naked Ape" to me all the way. Most fish pretty much avoid the desert, obviously.

>> BUT the Mandeans hang out by no ordinary rivers – their home territories are the Tigris and Euphrates, aka The Cradle Of Civilization AND, lest we forget, the first place a Fish Person ever set foot on dry land. (Leading to certain untoward events that resound to this day.)

>> It says here most of the Sabaeans are goldsmiths by trade, which of course says "fish people" all the way. Even Lovecraft knew that much about us, and he was hardly a fish at all. But since they don’t show any of the finished product in the article, it’s an open question whether the work they do is the creation of fish, apes, or something in between.

Well, I won’t belabor the point. Read for yourself and see. Now that you have such a prime example of misleading news writing in your hands, let’s see which of you can start producing more of the same. The goal here is always to get the information out to operatives while keeping the landscum in the dark. Have at it.


CLIFFIE’S NOTES ON The Creature From The Black Lagoon

OK, here’s where we get into the worst nightmares of your North American Cabal Leader. There is very little that scares me – I live in the Detroit River, are you kidding me? -- but the three Gill Man movies, starting with this one released in 1954, are truly horrifying. This is a movie you can think of as a tragedy of errors – a mutual misunderstanding that gets uglier than you would ever have thought possible. The filmmakers start at the shallow end of horror, and with each successive film they draw us in deeper, until we are in waaaaaaaay over our heads.

The plot summary goes like this: An expedition to the Amazon Basin leads to the discovery of a supposed throwback to the Devonian era, called the Gill Man by the scientific-type guys on the tour boat. The rest of the story revolves around the team’s attempts to capture and study him. Meanwhile, the Gill Man is trying to capture and study THEM.

>> In the usual Fifties sci-fi way, the scientists immediately conclude a bunch of crazy stuff; for example, they think the Gill Man is the only member of his species and has been living alone in the lagoon since Devonian times. You might think this bizarre thinking is only the stuff of B-movie convention, but seriously, in my experience this is pretty typical of human scientific theorizing. They’re all a bunch of nutjobs if you ask me.

>> Only the slipshod organizational skills of said nutjobs allow this lone Fish Person to prevail at last over them. Look at the progression of the story: a paleontologist finds a remarkable Devonian (?) fossil, drops everything to fly to the States, shows photos of the find to other scientists who decide there is a bundle in the venture, and the next day they are flying back to start a full-scale dig. The boss man says, without consulting a soul, that there is no way the Board of Directors would refuse the enormous sum of money and loss of manpower it would require to undertake this operation. The next thing we know, the heroes are out there with whatever they were able to slap together overnight, and one look at the boat they hired to travel up the Amazon should give you a pretty good idea of how unprepared they are.

>> Careless as the humans are, the fact remains that this operative, the Gill Man, is for some reason not with his Pod, and he’s facing them all alone. The scientific nutjobs are packing pesticides, spearguns, heavy netting, diving suits and dynamite. And the people handling them are as dumb as a row of hammers – listen to them talk! What it all means to me is that somebody’s going to get hurt.

>> The red herring: the supposed romantic interest the Gill Man has in the female lead, a pretty girl in a white one-piece bathing suit.

>> The reality behind the red herring: in his position, any of us would have made the same mistake the Gill Man did. He had no Pod Leader to guide him and, considering the year this movie was released, he may not have been a trained operative at all. And here’s this lone woman out in the water, signalling in every possible way that she’s open for contact. He was clearly trying to get her to one of his Pod Leaders for debriefing.

>> ALWAYS REMEMBER that most humans have lost touch with their aquatic traditions and don’t even think of themselves as aquatic beings. We, on the other hand, are mythological beings to them. No matter what you see them doing, THEY ARE NOT BEING FRIENDLY. They do not even believe we exist UNTIL THEY ARE ALREADY INDOCTRINATED. You new recruits can help explain this to the ones who were born into fish/ape hybrid families.

>> Richard Carlson has a line in this film that is unsettlingly prescient, considering the stage we had reached the year this movie was released: "We’ve just begun to learn about the water and its secrets," he says. It was something like 6 months from Creature’s release date that the first New York City formal contact was made. It’s as if the director, Jack Arnold, were welcoming us ashore.

>> Let me add a note here about the excellent acting that went into the portrayal of the Gill Man, our martyred operative. He was played by Ben Chapman on dry land and by Ricou Browning underwater, which under all the normal rules of B-moviemaking should have been a horrible mistake. In this case it was a perfect decision; because of it we can really see the primary handicap faced by our operative. In the water he is confident, graceful, commanding, cunning; on land he is struggling just to take his next step without falling over. In all 3 of these movies we see the Gill Man make great sacrifices to complete his task without hurting the Naked Ape he is trying to communicate with. THIS IS A LESSON I WANT ALL OF YOU TO BEAR FIRMLY IN MIND.

>> On the other hand, the Operative does not hesitate to mess up any human standing between him and his female contact. That is NOT good role modeling, and I recommend against it, unless you want a bad review from your Pod Leader.

>> The operative acquits himself excellently in the end. Shot several times, imprisoned, bugsprayed and badly burned, he does not abandon his task but keeps trying to bring the female contact together with his Pod Leader until he simply cannot go on. At that point he manages to die in such a way that there is nothing left for the scientists to autopsy.

I hope this movie means as much to you as it does to me. It is SO hard to watch it without getting all sniffly.

REVENGE OF THE CREATURE!


ANOTHER SIDE NOTE: RUN SILENT, RUN DEEP

As my steady readers will recall, I was MOST favorably impressed with two articles I spotted in U.S. News And World Report, specifically Volume 134, #20, June 9, 2003. The first I reviewed in the previous edition, and here comes the other, a review of "Fished Out" by Thomas Hayden (pg. 38). This one is crucial reading for every operative. It gets harder by the year for fully aquatic operatives to reach the plates of new contacts, in spite of the tremendous worldwide demand for seafood, whether fresh, frozen, canned, or salted. This is what happens when you allow the Naked Apes to run any sort of major industry. Having decimated the Swordfish, Shrimp, Cod and Roughy populations, the fools are now talking blithely about finding new ways to eat the "trash" they used to throw over the side of the trawlers, like Jellyfish and Barnacles. Our only option to preserve biodiversity is to withdraw whole species beyond the reach of the Naked Apes, and introduce others. We have to bear in mind that not all of the species in hiding will make it. Living underground (as the landscum call it) is tough, and there’s nothing tougher to hide from than a monkey in a submersible. Some of our operative divisions have simply outlasted their usefulness anyway, like the species commonly called "mermaids," but that doesn’t excuse what the idiots on dry land are doing to wipe out their own food supplies AND YOUR RELATIVES.

What I want to point out here is that we are making use of the benefits in this crisis. Until now, for instance, only Far Eastern landscum knew how to interact with a jellyfish, but the word is spreading at long, long last. This does nothing but benefit us. The wholesale closing of cod fisheries is going to give a much-needed rest to many other species as well, giving us the opportunity to multiply…and make some plans. Read between the lines and notice which species are NOT mentioned. These will be the next major players in our world-takeover scheme. Stay tuned!

CLIFFIE’S NOTES ON Revenge Of The Creature

This is the second installment in the Creature From The Black Lagoon series, and I can recommend it just as highly as I do the first one. This movie shows the worst-case scenario of an operative who penetrates into the world of the landscum, unsupported by his Pod. Plot summary: a second expedition to the Amazon succeeds in bringing the Gill Man back to Naked Ape civilization, specifically the Ocean Harbor seaquarium in Florida. Another pretty girl in a white, one-piece bathing suit, working in tandem with her love interest, set themselves to the task of studying the kidnap victim who is chained to the bottom of a large display tank. They go to work on him with drugged food, a ball-and-chain apparatus (how symbolic) and a cattle prod. They say they’re trying to assess his intelligence, but get real, they just want him to do whatever they say. He takes this for just so long and no longer. Eventually he frees himself, beards his tormentors in their love nest at the Star Motel, makes off with the girl, and the hunt is on. This film ends badly for the Gill Man, but worse for the apes, who lose another excellent chance to open negotiations with our people.

>> They used slightly different star power in this film, casting Tom Hennesy to play the Gill Man in the dry-land scenes. Good old Ricou Browning plays him underwater as before. Hennesy plays the role quite differently from Ben Chapman, whom you saw in the land scenes of the original film. This new Gill Man is a tougher customer, well fed, well rested, thoroughly out of patience with the ways of the landscum and ready to kick some Pink Monkey keester. You would be, too, in his place.

>> Again, the Gill Man in this movie does not come across as a trained operative to me. If he knew what he was up against he would simply get the hell out of Dodge. Instead, he tries as well as he can, as long as he can, to be nice to the landscum doing experiments on him, but finally he just can’t take it anymore. I don’t see this as a failure on his part. He had no back-up at all and hey, he was being tortured.

>> If you ask me it’s hard to miss the way the Gill Man – having been treated with rather less than the average respect accorded a newly-arrived ambassador – STILL maintains an incredible level of decency. The humans can’t detect decency when they see it, though. Notice the way his pursuers hold their fire at the Gill Man because they don’t want to hit the girl he’s carrying. NOT because he hasn’t hurt her and doesn’t deserve to take a bullet. It astonishes me that he would even attempt to get her alive to the Pod for debriefing, after she kidnapped him from his home and practiced monkey psychology on him. We could have gotten a good deal of information (plus a tasty snack) from her dismembered, waterlogged body. THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN FINE WITH ME.

>> Of course, we now have it arranged so things never get this out of hand and we don’t have to worry about exacting a bloody revenge. But next time you chafe at one of our security precautions, Constant Reader, remember the Gill Man. THIS COULD BE YOU.

>> Now that I think of it, he could have just taken her by the hair and dragged her wherever he wanted in the water, instead of carrying her above the surface and depositing her on the beach when he had to go down for a breath of air. Now show me one place in this movie where they showed HIM half as much consideration. That is one hell of a nice guy.

>> Not to mention gorgeous. This guy is so gorgeous.

>> Notice also the sympathy the Gill Man has for his fellow captives at Ocean Harbor. Even the humans comment on the way he doesn’t eat his tankmates. And they certainly are more appetizing than the Purina Dolphin Chow they feed him. You and I know they were all working together on the escape plan.

>> Several operatives viewing this film have asked me about the fact that they kidnapped the Gill Man from the Amazon Basin and slung him into a tank that was obviously filled with saltwater species – sea turtles, sawfish and the odd barracuda. I cannot see this as a security breach, only as a typical example of B-movie scientific accuracy.

>> To give you another example of the moviemakers’ attention to detail: where did they get a cattle prod that works underwater?

>> I can never get over how humans go into a situation shooting, stabbing, clubbing, spraying poison gas, then get all upset when the species they’ve assaulted doesn’t LIKE them. The movie starts right out with a nasty confrontation and gets worse from there. What do they really expect from us? Free pork chops? This is precisely what makes all human entertainment so nightmarish for another species to watch.

>> Speaking of species prejudice -- is it just me, or is there ANYTHING more unsettling than watching humans blow the crap out of aliens, giant sharks, rabid vampire bats, unfriendly robots, ferocious packs of squid, killer morning-glory vines, irascible demons, and EACH OTHER for every minute of a two-hour movie and then see that disclaimer appear on the screen as the credits roll? ‘NO ACTUAL HARM CAME TO THE CHIHUAHUAS USED IN THIS PICTURE.’

>> I’ll tell you what, only a Naked Ape audience, that claims to share such a sympathy and spritual kinship with the cetaceans, could watch that scene featuring "Flippy, The Educated Porpoise" and not see what was really going on there. Check out the hatefilled sneer on poor Flippy’s face as he slides up to his human tormentor to accept his gross, slimy dead fish in payment for that last trick. They could just as well have added subtitles: "OK, I rang the goddamn bell and hoisted the goddamn flag. NOW WILL YOU PLEASE KILL ME?"

>> In spite of the aqua-hating action in this movie, there are a good many lines in the script that suggest SOMEONE involved knew what they were talking about. Captain Lucas, now piloting the trim new Rita II into danger because his original boat was clobbered in the first movie, asks: "It doesn’t belong in our world. It should have died out long before Man was born. Still it exists…Why?" Well, Chumly, you aren’t handling things too well, are you? Somebody has to keep the situation straight. If not us, who? If not now, when?

>> Same ending, different movie. The Gill Man cannot ultimately escape the wrath of the Naked Apes but he manages to keep his bullet-riddled body out of their hands. There is a message for all of us in this repeating motif. NEVER LET THEM TAKE YOU ALIVE. AND NEVER, NEVER LET THEM DO AN AUTOPSY.

THE CREATURE WALKS AMONG US!


NEWSFLASH: ANOTHER TRIUMPH FOR OUR SIDE!

Recently I saw in one of the news organs that the most extensive underwater scan ever of Loch Ness has uncovered no sign at all of anything large enough to be Nessie. They scoped out the entire space and found, well, a big hole in the ground full of murky water. In other words, ladies, OUR LITTLE PLAN IS WORKING.

Much has been made of the fact that a creature as large as Nessie could not possibly hide herself decade after decade, especially if she breathes air. I always get a smile out of this tiny-minded human thinking. As you all know, Nessie is actually a collective of wee Scots fishies who form up into a lake monster as needed. Why they need to is classified and can’t be put on the Internet, sorry. But as soon as the monkey people lower a camera, fish finder or similar puny instrument of technology into the loch, the fish just scatter -- chuckling, I tell you! LAUGHING AT YOU ALL!

Similarly, not one specimen of the Nessie fish has ever been caught. The Scots don’t even know they are there. They would not consider them worth eating even if they did catch one, but none of these special operatives are silly enough to go after a worm on a hook.

The other monkeybrained argument against Nessie is that an animal that large could not possibly keep herself fed in a body of water that size. Again, no problem. Nessie fish eat EACH OTHER and thus pass on the racial memory of their task to the next generation. Indeed are the ways of the Deep Ones mysterious as all get out.

CLIFFIE'S NOTES ON THE CREATURE WALKS AMONG US

This movie takes the viewer well beyond the worst-case scenario of one of our operatives being captured, tortured and killed by the landscum. It takes us into an insane, impossible territory where fish turn into men, instead of the other way around, as it happens in the natural order of things. YECCCCH.

Plot summary: hero-type guy falls for yet another pretty girl in a white one-piece bathing suit, this time the discontented young wife of a wealthy, insanely jealous scientist who is out to capture and study a Gill Man of his very own. They search for him in the Everglades, using the scientist’s incredibly luxurious research vessel. Another successful capture leads to tragedy for everyone but the girl as the Gill Man penetrates deeper than ever into landscum, I mean human, society, and winds up half-human himself, looking strangely more and more like Mr. T as his transformation progresses. Things get ugly soon enough, in more ways than one, and once the Gill Man is framed for murder he gets really mad and kicks some Pink Monkey butt.

>> You know right away that the Insanely Jealous Husband is not truly committed to the Scientific Method. He is too caught up in petty, unscientific emotions like love and possessiveness and stuff. He’s going to go under, but will he take the Gill Man down with him?

>> And look at this research ship of his! Glass cases full of leather-bound books! A drawing room with a piano! Martini shakers! Statuary everywhere! A BUTLER, are you kidding me? Would you call a research ship the Vagabondia III? Would you make your wife host cocktail parties there in her white one-piece cocktail dress? Is this science? I ask you.

>> Since when do Gill Men live in the Everglades, anyway? Are they telling us he survived the last picture only to be recaptured in this one? Well, there may have been a colony of them there in the Fifties. WE KNOW THERE IS NOW. But back to the subject at hand. Apparently the word has spread among these Everglades Gill Men that they should stay the heck away from girls in white one-piece bathing suits. There is such a girl in this movie, sure enough, and she does everything possible to put herself in the path of our unlucky operative. The Gill Man looks, but he never touches, and a good thing, too.

>> Notice just how much trouble this girl goes to to tempt the Gill Man. After being warned repeatedly to be careful, because the menfolk know how reckless she is, they abandon her to try her luck scuba-diving. They are nearby, armed to the teeth to hunt the ferocious Gill Man. The girl immediately dives too far down and succumbs to "the rapture of the deep." She might as well be wearing a t-shirt that says "TAKE ME, I’M YOURS." Any aquatic lifeform behaving this way would be voluntarily sacrificing herself to the Elder Gods for consumption, and you’d better believe the Gill Man knows it. But he also knows that she is clueless about the message she’s sending. This, like the Naked Ape male who has the restraint not to force himself on a drunken female of his own species, shows the clear signs of a good upbringing and a clear sense of right and wrong. Ultimately, even intelligent caution does not help the Gill Man.

>> I’m not sure he’s just being chivalrous in not putting the munch on this girl. My thought is that the Gill Man would realize immediately that she’s is pretty unbalanced or she would never stay with a husband like this one. The girl proves it almost immediately upon arriving in the Everglades, when the men rush up on deck in response to the racket of someone firing a gun repeatedly. Sure enough, it’s her, all decked out in her hunting togs, ventilating sharks for laughs. She’s a real dream date.

>> The intrepid scientists warn each other over and over to take the Gill Man alive for the purposes of Scientific Study. Once they spot him, however, they open fire with a pistol, shoot him twice in the midsection with a speargun, and finally manage to set fire to him before they drag him aboard, ventilated in half a dozen places and sporting 3rd-degree burns.>> The intrepid scientists realize quickly that with all his skin burned off, the Gill Man starts to look a lot more human. They conclude from the depths of their Fifties scientific theoretical foundation that he was only a fish on the surface – THERE WAS A MAN WAITING INSIDE ALL ALONG. I personally find this idea just plain insulting.

>> Luckily for the idiots caring for him, the Gill Man has a set of lungs ready for emergencies -- they discover it by accident after keeping him swathed in dry gauze on a table in the ship's operating theater for several DAYS, wondering vaguely why he isn't dead yet. Once they pry off the bandages, we start to see the changes better -- he suddenly has eyelids and squinty little monkey eyes instead of the come-hither fish eyes we swooned over in the previous movies. His claws drop off, and he has fingernails underneath. The arrestingly lovely gills are scorched away, so there are only little tags left in the shape of...monkey’s ears. And there's a ridge running down the back of his noggin that, along with the permanent, miserable scowl and the steroidal build of the kidnap victim, completes the resemblance to Mr. T.

>> Talk about man’s inhumanity to fish. They not only half-kill and permanently disfigure the Gill Man, they then proceed to keep him in a bone-dry holding pen and give him no access to food, water or shade. If this really is the same Gill Man we saw in the previous movie, I have to say he’s the politest, most long-suffering operative I can imagine. A credit to our race, if you ask me.>> After the scientist coshes one of his younger, better-looking rivals in a jealous rage, he decides his best move is to put the victim in the enclosure where they are keeping the Gill Man, who is kept (terribly symbolically) with all the other experimental sheep on the premises...And can someone please explain to me why they are keeping a flock of sheep behind a 20'-high electrified fence in the Everglades?

>> Well, the Gill Man finally sees his moment, widows the discontented young wife, rips the enclosure to shreds, takes a few bullets in the chest, and staggers off towards the ocean...a piscatorial figure of selflessness and sacrifice if ever I saw one. There's a distinct possibility that he can no longer survive underwater. The look on his face suggests that this may well be a suicidal beach stroll. We never find out for sure.

>> The key roles were played perfectly by all concerned. What a couple of fantastic actors these are. As always, Ricou Browning does the underwater scenes. This time we saw Don Megown in the tragic, tragic role of the transformed Gill Man, standing helplessly on land and wishing so hard to get back home. You just want to, I dunno, DO something for poor Megown but it’s too late. This terribly sad movie was as well-acted and generally well-made as the other two Creature features. Like the other two, it is more about Science than Nature running amok. Encouragingly, Nature does not take this lying down.