Tuesday, August 26, 2014


Have recently started working my way through season one of Land of the Giants, the Irwin Allen fantasy series from 1968 - 1970. The episode I watched today (‘The Bounty Hunter’) guest starred Kimberley Beck, who later went on to star in Massacre at Central High (1976) and Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984)! It was a clear attempt by Allen to replicate the successful formula of Lost in Space, but it never really came off (Fitzhugh was no Dr. Smith). I still enjoy Land of the Giants though, it’s colours and production design are pop-art vibrant, and I like the low-angle and off-kilt way in which they depict the giants, so recognizably human but with a ‘not quite right’ sense about them. And there’s a certain fetishism inherent in the scenes where the main leads (particularly the two females) are bound to a desktop or examination table with sticky tape then prodded and threatened by a variety of giant pencils, scalpels and fingers. Great animated opening title sequence and theme music by John Williams, with its jazzy and very Hitchcockian feel. The effects are the usual mix of rear projection, oversized props and unconvincing giant mechanical hands, but as a fan of Bert I. Gordon’s giant genre films (The Amazing Colossal Man, Attack of the Puppet People, etc.) I always find this stuff so much fun to watch.