Hi! This is Not urgent...but what do you think about the origins of B-movies? Right now I'm reading E.A. Van Vogt's "Voyage of the Space Beagle"--1950, Golden Age SF in all its glory. There's an evil space octopus (!!!) and it makes me think of B-Movies quite a lot. Any thoughts on how we came to have B-movies when and how we did (other than the obvious one: God loves us and wants to make us happy with evil space octopus stories).
Most film historians would probably say it began with the double-bill back in the 30s. You'd pay one price for a main feature and then get a cheaply made b-grade movie to go with it. There were all kinds, stuff like gangster films, old dark house mysteries, cheap comedies. A lot of them were series like Jungle Jim or Charlie Chan or Andy Hardy or the Bowery Boys. When sci-fi took off in the 50s, they simply carried on the tradition, for which I am eternally grateful. The double-bill was pretty much gone by the end of the 70s, except in drive-ins where I manged to catch a few. I think the last one I saw was the opening weekend of Conan The Barbarian which my drive-in paired with a showing of Tentacles, an insane Italian Jaws rip-off about a (wait for it) evil octopus. That was a fun night.
Must. Get. Tentacles!!!!Um, I mean, thank you for the scoop.And "Voyage of the Space Beagle" is looking kid-friendly so far, if you're on the look-out for SF for readers who don't need to hear just how good Kirk is at his favorite hobby....
Awesome dismantling of the common misconception about Ockham's Razor. Contact is as about as odious as it gets.
I actually thought about referencing Contact but wasn't sure how many people would have seen it.
Sorry, now I can't get out of my head "Contact...has...been...made!" For non-Doctor Who fans, that was an especially cheesy fourth doctor episode starring Tom Baker.
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