By John Clute, Peter Nicholls
Encompassing 4,360 entries that supply serious perception and biographical and bibliographical info, an up to date version of a favored technological know-how fiction reference contains a rigorously cross-referenced layout.
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Additional resources for The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction
MERRITT, who had described a fascinating mineral life-system in The Metal Monster (1920; 1946) and had transcended conventional biological chauvinism in his portrayal of The Snake-Mother (1930; incorporated in The Face in the Abyss 1931). Jack WILLIAMSON clearly showed Merritt's influence in The Alien Intelligence (1929) and The Moon Era (1932). WEINBAUM, whose A Martian Odyssey (1934) made a deep impression on readers. Weinbaum followed it up with other accounts of relatively complex alien biospheres (ECOLOGY).
The same novel set the pattern by which alien beings are frequently imagined as loathsome MONSTERS. Wells went on to produce an elaborate description of an alien society in THE FIRST MEN IN THE MOON (1901), based on the model of the ant-nest (HIVE-MINDS), thus instituting another significant cliche. Early US PULP-MAGAZINE sf in the vein of Edgar Rice BURROUGHS usually populated other worlds with quasihuman inhabitants - almost invariably including beautiful women for the heroes to fall in love with - but frequently, for melodramatic purposes, placed such races under threat from predatory monsters.
91 mins cut to 89 mins. Colour. A pet baby alligator is flushed down the toilet, and it or another grows into a monster, aided by hormone-experiment waste materials illicitly dumped in the sewers. A policeman investigates the increasingly violent and bizarre alligator attacks, climaxing in the destruction of a wedding party held by (of course) the wicked polluter. A is funny and well made. Sayles has remarked that my original idea was that the alligator eats its way through the whole socio-economic system.