Like many longtime fans of The Twilight Zone, I was thrilled when CBS announced the show's return. I am, admittedly, unfamiliar with most of Jordan' Peele's work, but that doesn't stop me from cheering the decision to bring the series back, especially at a time when much of our public life seems to bring it to mind.
The importance of The Twilight Zone when it comes to science fiction stories like Sorrow's Echo can't be overstated. It opened the door for smart, creepy, and weird sci-fi that has inspired countless authors, moviemakers, and fans throughout the decades. It also introduced the idea that science fiction and fantasy could be used to address current events and life problems in ways that normal television couldn't. It was, in essence, political and philosophical debate disguised as entertainment. Brilliant!
The show and its many revivals have spawned dozens of amazing episodes. Who can forget "The Eye of the Beholder," "Nightmare at 20,000 feet" and "I Am the Night—Color Me Black"? Each of those episodes were appropriately dramatic and frightening, but more important, they left people thinking for years and decades to come. Even more, they gave people a way to discuss controversial topics of the time without broaching the forbidden paths of politics.
We can only hope Jordan Peele's Twilight Zone will do the same. It is, perhaps, the one thing that would persuade me to pay for CBS All Access.
What are your favorite Twilight Zone episodes and why? Include a picture below!
Predator isn't a great film. I'm not talking about the newest film that released last week to extremely mixed reviews or the one before that or Predator 2 or either of the Alien vs. Predator movies (though each of those have their own issues), I'm talking about the original, 1987 John McTiernan film complete with its badass future governors bursting with testosterone, its "get to da choppa," and its creepy alien. In fact, the movie is more than a bit cheesy and more than a little over-the-top. So why do we love it anyway?
While Predator may not be a great film, it is a very good one. In fact, it may be one of the best B-movies ever made.
One ugly mother...
First, hands down, the Predator is one of the most badass aliens around. With its dreadlocks, high tech armor and gadgets, cloaking technology, and, of course, its distinctive mandibles, it is perfectly designed.
Apparently, an offhand comment by legendary filmmaker James Cameron led to the addition of the mandibles in the Predator design. If that's true, then we owe him a debt. The mandible make the creature distinct and purely alien. The addition of cloaking technology and "Predator-vision" add to that uniqueness and make the creature damned near impossible to find, much less kill.
The end result is that the Predator is as scary as they come, and definitely not something you'd want to meet in a dark alley or the jungle.
The Most Dangerous Game
But perhaps the coolest thing about Predator is the fact that, at its core, it is a loose adaptation of Richard Connell's famous short story, "The Most Dangerous Game." In both stories, the hunters become the hunted for no other reason than sport. The Predator isn't scary just because it's a creepy-looking alien with cool gadgetry, it's terrifying because it has no sympathy for a species it considers less than itself. In fact, it revels in the kill as much as any human hunter revels in taking down big game.
This lack of regard for humanity elevates what probably should be a forgotten B-movie to something more frightening and make it linger with you after the final explosion and credits roll.
What is your favorite part of the Predator series? Remember not everyone (including me) has seen the new movie, so no spoilers!