Wednesday, January 5, 2011

As above, so below



Ahoy hoy!
Yesterday's post got me thinking.  What kinds of science fiction stories have utilized the "underwater aliens" motif?  I did a cursory bit of searching through the "interwebs" as they say and came up with a few titles.  Some were familiar.  Others were not.  They were mostly films as there seems to be a surprising dearth of books written on the trope.  Doubtless they exist, but I've neither found nor read any, except for the original 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Verne.  Anyway, here's what came up in the net (get it?  Heh!  A little nautical-type humor!  Funny, right?  Yeah, many probably won't agree.)

The Abyss--this is probably the most well-known example of great seaborne sci-fi.  James Cameron brings us a hyper-original tale of a civilian diving crew that gets hired to search the deep for a lost Navy submarine.  What they find is an aquatic alien race that has been among us for quite some time.  As usual, Cameron really pushed the frontiers of special effects with this one.

Sphere--an alien spaceship is found beneath tons of coral at the bottom of the ocean and a team goes in to investigate.  Based on a book by Michael Crichton (so I guess there's one book at least.)  I've never seen this film, but I understand that it features Huey Lewis as a helicopter pilot.  Tempting.

The Atomic Submarine--ships are disappearing in the Arctic sea lanes.  A high-tech (for 1960) nuclear submarine is sent to investigate.  They discover that the culprit is (shocker!) an alien spaceship.  For those of you into RPGs, it looks like a good blend of GURPS Atlantis and Atomic Horror.  Also good if you're just into fun, cheesy sci-fi from the 1950s era.

Lords of the Deep--America establishes its first undersea base for mining and research.  What is found is an alien civilization.  I'm noticing a pattern here.  This 1989 opus appears on numerous lists of "bad movies."  Haven't seen it, but I suggest doing so only if you've been conditioned for such things.
Even then it might not be a good idea.

Deepstar Six--kinda the same thing, only with a slightly bigger budget and a higher caliber cast...if you can say that about Greg Evigan and Nia Peeples.  Also from 1989...just like The Abyss and the aforementioned apparent kidney stone known as Lords of the Deep.

Leviathan--deep sea miners salvage an old Soviet wreck.  What they find is a mutation that stalks them back at their base.  Saw this one in the theater.  Eww.  At least it has Peter Weller.  And take a guess when it was made?  That's right.  1989.  Must've been something in the water that year.  Ha!  Another one!  I'm a regular pun-slinging bastard today.

The Return of Captain Nemo--this was a short-lived TV series from 1978 that I have very vague recollections of.  I only remember the laser battle scenes and Burgess Meredith as a scientist.  Apparently, the original Captain Nemo is found in suspended animation by the US Navy.  He is then tapped to help us against the evil King of Atlantis as said monarch wages war upon the surface world.

Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea--starring Richard Baseheart, this TV series four seasons and found aliens aplenty.  I used to watch it many years ago on the Sci-Fi Channel.  You know, before that network became a wasteland of schlock and reality TV?


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