Author Topic: My frustrated ALIEN initiation  (Read 1890 times)

SIMON-Croissant
Aug 16, 2020, 03:45:52 PM
Topic on: Aug 16, 2020, 03:45:52 PM
Q
I love Ridley Scott's ALIEN. No surprise there, I'm sure. The first time that I tried to watch A L I E N, aged 8, with my sci-fi fan elder brothers - all hooked on 2000AD - was on holiday in a Welsh cottage. The eldest, who had a shelf filled end-to-end with many novels by science fiction's greatest writers, had convinced us that the film would be great because he had read Alan Dean Foster's novelisation. We were annoyed to discover that the first terrestrial screening in Great Britain of A L I E N was to air on our day of arrival at the Welsh cottage. Our 'inconsiderate' parents had booked us into an old house with a black and white television! Okay, we calmed down. We would be able to see it at least, or so we thought. As soon as we got in through the creaky front door of that old place, the eldest was straight onto the tv set, plugging in and twirling the aerial for a signal. Oh dear. The tube was blown! We had good sound, but no picture, just a small, glowing dot an inch wide in the centre of the screen! We were told that 'there would be a replacement, but not today'. Okay, we calmed down. We would be able to hear it at least. That evening we took our places on the sofa to listen to the 'audio version' of Ridley Scott's classic. After being spooked by Jerry Goldsmith's score and nodding to each other in appreciation, we settled down to enjoy/be afraid of the film. The eldest reassured us that with his Dean Foster 'insider knowledge', he would be able to narrate for us during the quiet bits. After about twenty-five minutes it was very apparent that he could not. So, dejected, the three of us 'marched up the wooden hill to Bedfordshire' as my dad probably put it. Several months later - very long in 'child-time' - A L I E N appeared on tv again and we made sure that we would be at home to see it in colour. WOW! It was worth the wait!

I had read through the Scanlon/Gross 'The Art of Alien' book three times and had studied and admired all of the concept art within it for so many countless hours by the time ALIENS came out. Again WOW! Very keen on writing and illustration I wrote a short essay in college about the diverse conceptual art styles that Ridley Scott had to choose from when establishing the 'look' of A L I E N. A B+ was given, but I'd be embarrassed to look at it now.   
                   
Many years later and the eldest works in website design, the middle brother, who fulfilled his childhood dream of becoming a 2000AD artist and can sketch a good Judge Dredd in seconds, has worked in conceptual art for film, pop promos and video games and had his own, original comic series published fairly recently. And yeah. He likes doing paintings of nasty xenomorphs and predators when their not cloaked in invisibility fields. Me? Well, I quit a BA Hons in Illustration way back in '98 in order to prioritise my writing. I was most recently published in an anonymous capacity as co-author/ghostwriter for my brother's World War Two horror comic series. Sorry, folks, I know I've gone on a bit, but I do love my keyboard.

The above anecdote was brought to avpgalaxy.net courtesy of SIMON (Infant Idiot) Croissant.





« Last Edit: Aug 24, 2020, 10:29:51 AM by SIMON-Croissant »

Kradan
Aug 16, 2020, 05:51:27 PM
Reply #1 on: Aug 16, 2020, 05:51:27 PM
Q
What a story. Love it  :)


SIMON-Croissant
Aug 17, 2020, 12:15:45 PM
Reply #2 on: Aug 17, 2020, 12:15:45 PM
Q
Hello, Kradan. Thanks for your comment. I hoped that my A L I E N anecdote might amuse. Memories of hearing the lethargic voices of the Nostromo crew, whilst staring at a dull white dot are still vivid.  I didn't enjoy my cornflakes the next morning I can tell you. I was keen to get out and blow my pocket-money on little polystyrene glider planes, Matchbox cars and Matlow's Refreshers.


SIMON-Croissant
Aug 20, 2020, 10:34:11 AM
Reply #3 on: Aug 20, 2020, 10:34:11 AM
Q
I would just like to apologise to avpgalaxy.net for my use of capital letters, which were occasionally used for emphasis or because the title of Ridley Scott's '79 classic is not Alien, it's A L I E N. This then applies to all sequels and prequels in the use of capitals and spacing. I was not thorough in my reading of the site rules. Sorry, folks.             
My second favourite film is A L I E N. My favourite is Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. I know it was a flop at the box office, but I like it. The child catcher is far scarier than the creatures in the A L I E N films. The child catcher is real. Aliens with acid for blood are not. No xenomorph has ever lured a child with a lollipop. A sobering thought.

« Last Edit: Aug 30, 2020, 02:37:15 PM by SIMON-Croissant »

Kradan
Aug 20, 2020, 10:40:27 AM
Reply #4 on: Aug 20, 2020, 10:40:27 AM
Q
Well, that's basically why SAW scared me shitless when I was little and Aliens movies did not - I knew they're fictional stories set far in the future in space. On the other hand, man kidnapping people and making them kill and tear each other to get freaking key and escape is much scarier because it's something I can actually imagine happening

Also, that puppet is horrific

« Last Edit: Aug 20, 2020, 10:42:33 AM by Kradan »


SM
Aug 20, 2020, 10:48:28 AM
Reply #6 on: Aug 20, 2020, 10:48:28 AM
Q
Hushabye Mountain is a great tune.


SIMON-Croissant
Aug 21, 2020, 12:53:21 PM
Reply #7 on: Aug 21, 2020, 12:53:21 PM
Q
Hilarious! I'm crying, regarding Ace Ventura. Thank you for cheering me up. From the grumpy Jones the Cat fan.
'Hushabye...' sure is good. Better than 'Toot Sweets'. Love that sequence where Dick Van Dyke does the puppet dance.
Yeah. The SAW puppet. That's creepy. Particularly because my brother is currently working on a spooky painting with three, unsettling, marionette puppets right in the middle of it! Noooooooooooo!

« Last Edit: Aug 21, 2020, 01:08:51 PM by SIMON-Croissant »

SIMON-Croissant
Aug 22, 2020, 02:15:00 PM
Reply #8 on: Aug 22, 2020, 02:15:00 PM
Q
My third favourite film is BLADERUNNER. More flying cars! The spinners don't have the charm of good old Chitty though, but BLADERUNNER is a beautiful film. Coincidentally, my brother has gone to look at a new car today. I said 'Say no', unless it has wings, a horn or vertical take-off and landing.


Bonus Situation
Sep 14, 2020, 07:21:04 AM
Reply #9 on: Sep 14, 2020, 07:21:04 AM
Q
Hello. Thanks for sharing your story. I really enjoyed it.  Reminded me of my sister and I watching Alien for the first time on a tiny box tv - the quality was like that of Kane’s cameras when visiting the derelict. I was also about 8 or 9. Thanks again.


Kradan
Sep 14, 2020, 08:32:34 AM
Reply #10 on: Sep 14, 2020, 08:32:34 AM
Q
Hello. Thanks for sharing your story. I really enjoyed it.  Reminded me of my sister and I watching Alien for the first time on a tiny box tv - the quality was like that of Kane’s cameras when visiting the derelict. I was also about 8 or 9. Thanks again.

So much more immersive for that, right ?


Bonus Situation
Sep 14, 2020, 11:14:06 AM
Reply #11 on: Sep 14, 2020, 11:14:06 AM
Q
Hello. Thanks for sharing your story. I really enjoyed it.  Reminded me of my sister and I watching Alien for the first time on a tiny box tv - the quality was like that of Kane%u2019s cameras when visiting the derelict. I was also about 8 or 9. Thanks again.

So much more immersive for that, right ?

It had a certain charm at time which I can appreciate now but as an 8 year old at the time...not so much ha!


SIMON-Croissant
Sep 23, 2020, 12:34:43 PM
Reply #12 on: Sep 23, 2020, 12:34:43 PM
Q
Hello. Thanks for sharing your story. I really enjoyed it.  Reminded me of my sister and I watching Alien for the first time on a tiny box tv - the quality was like that of Kane’s cameras when visiting the derelict. I was also about 8 or 9. Thanks again.

You were both clearly more fortunate than me and my siblings. Your screen was small, grainy and your signal probably wasn't too good, but you had a moving image. You had an A L I E N experience. We didn't get that. We saw nothing. A tiny tv with a grainy image would have been a joy compared to what we got. Was it black and white or glorious colour? Don't tell me it was colour! Was it? Was it?!!!!

P.S - If that came across as jealous or flippant I was only joking. Thank you, Bonus Situation, for writing. I've lost count of the number of times I've seen A L I E N in the forty years that followed. Not overcompensating. I just love that movie and many times I have watched it because I continue to find it compelling and inspirational for some of my own work. Good to see someone championing the cause of 'as PARKER'.  Ridley Scott said that Yaphet Kotto would often turn up on set and say 'I'm not dying today. I'm gonna kill that alien!' It's good to know this. A person of colour surviving in an A L I E N film is long overdue. Okay, the first AVP film, but not A L I E N. RIP Parker, Apone, Dillon (we honour your sacrifice) and Distephano. My apologies to any fictional characters I didn't recall. And no, I did not write this because of Black Lives Matter. I would have said it anyway.

« Last Edit: Sep 24, 2020, 12:46:34 PM by SIMON-Croissant »

 

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