Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Monster of the Week: ALIEN BEINGS

As I did last Halloween Countdown, I will have my Monster of the Week segment reborn from it's slumber. Other monsters I've written about last year were The Werebeast, The Vampire, The Zombie and The Ghost. Very famous and easily recognizable monsters, so now I need to dig deeper to find more creatures to talk about. Lucky for me, I am a monster-seeker, a lover of creepy crawlies if you will. I am sure I'll find more monsters to talk about. Haven't even touched constructs, demons, artificial intelligence and ALIENS...

Today's post is going to be about the beings from another world. Planetary Invaders. Space Beasts. Alien Beings. Just some of the many terms we use to describe these creatures. They are other, and in horror we sure love our monsters to embody the darkest parts of our fear of other. Anything we cannot understand, cannot wrap our brains around we peg as other. You see it all the time. People being ostracized for your skin tone, beliefs, sexual orientation, etc. We call these people freaks, monsters...Alien.

And in our fiction and movies, we love to play with the idea of what the word alien truly means.

Aliens in horror are a very malleable creature to play around with too, from a writing perspective. Because of their unknown origins, and the place they come from [spooky voice] Ooouter Ssssspace [/spooky voice] they   give lots of wiggle room for any kooky, whacked out idea about what they are and what they want. Lots of room for questions to be answered by the story, or to just leave questions for the reader/audience to mull over. If written well an alien being can inspire you, even if it's just to have nightmares about some pod people stealing your skin while you sleep.

Aliens are insidious in their own right, because they have such variety in their guises. Sometimes, they look exactly like us, and try to present a smiling, benevolent face. Watch out for these guys. they may be aliens possessing your friends or your dog:

Or they may be space people from the stars who promise cures for cancer and shit, but just wanna do evil things to you:

But often, they are weird-looking. Freakishly formed beings that are so bizarre to our human brains, we cannot see them as anything but monsters. Sometimes they are so fascinatingly strange it's hard to not stop and stare, until you see one rip the stomach out of a colleague:

Or they turn out to be...well...these adorable, yet hungry little buggers. Some you might not want to feed after midnight:
(and yes, Gremlins actually count as aliens, though you wouldn't know that unless you read the book. Lord Bearington schooled me on this. I'm not surprised he read the book actually...)

And the wonderful, yet horrible thing about alien beings is that their powers vary as much as their shape. As I said, some can possess humans, or just outright mimic our forms. They do this sometimes by consuming us, other times with their fancy tech. A lot of them have fancy tech too. They can come down in flying saucers and abduct us, or probe us with weird devices. Many people claim that they really have been abducted by aliens and probed for information by the creatures. Why do you think Mulder was so obsessed with alien lifeforms in X Files?

Do you want to believe? If you do find one, you may wish you hadn't. Especially if it rips from your chest or tries to absorb your form!

Here's a couple of my favourite alien life forms to spook your Halloween dreams. I won't name all of them, but consider the ones I've posted pictures of already, you know I have a wide range of taste in space beasties:

Lord Bearington and I are huge fans of the Alien/Predator franchises. They really capture the sentiment of, "It's a big universe and we are pretty puny." Because a lot of the horror that is dealt with when alien beings are brought into the picture deals with this issue. Also, especially with the Alien franchise, the fascination with the series I find steams from the Aliens themselves. They are intelligent, but not in a human way. The way they think is so beyond human comprehension, and yet somehow we can still imagine these things as real beings. They do horrible things, yet we constantly want to know more about them. For every answer we get, more mysteries are uncovered.

(I love this ad)

And yes, you can play games based off of the Alien vs Predator franchise. Are they any good? You'll have to tell me. I didn't get a chance to play them.

I'm a big fan of the ABC reboot of V. It has an excellent plot, as well as good acting. I think what draws me the most to this series is that these beings come to our planet in the guise of friendship, but as the series progresses you see their sinister side. Even before we see their true faces, we know by their secret actions they are monsters, here to conquer us. Invasion is a big theme with movies dealing with otherworldly visitors.

And of course, John Carpenter's THE THING. I cannot forget this one! Of course there are other stories out there about Alien possession such as the classic Body Snatchers, (another good one to watch for sure) but I find The Thing does it better. There's more mystery in it, and I like how it plays out. Plus the creature effects are amazing in it.

What about you readers? What's your pleasure? Cute but deadly aliens, or walking in human skin, or something so weird your brain instantly wants to make you run from your seat when you view the creature and hide? I personally like any and all of those options, as long as they make me think about the possibilities of what could lurk out there in space.

1 comment:

  1. First of all, the best reason to watch Alien is Sigourney Weaver. I wanna wake up as Sigourney, assuming I cannot be Rima Horton. Sigh.

    We quote these movies all the time as Relationship Shorthand. "Seventeen days?" LOL

    Second: I own the original V, and now I must watch it. Damn you, Kweeny. Are we being the same person again? ; )


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