The Mole People - 1964 Issue - Warren Magazines
Story by Russ Jones, based on the screenplay by Laszlo Gorog. The 1956 sci-fi B-movie The Mole People is adapted to comics, using movie stills, captions, word balloons and hilarious sound effects. Scientists exploring beneath the Earths surface discover a race of monsters. Perhaps the first ever B-comic.
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A narration by Dr. Frank Baxter, an English professor at the University of Southern California, explains the premise of the film and its basis in reality. He briefly discusses the hollow earth theories of John Symmes and Cyrus Teed among others, and says that the movie is a fictionalized representation of this unorthodox point of view.
Archaeologists Dr. Roger Bentley and Dr. Jud Bellamin stumble upon a race of Sumerian albinos living deep under the Earth. They keep mutant humanoid mole men as their slaves to harvest mushrooms, their primary food source, since they can grow without sunlight. The Sumerian albinos' ancestors moved into the subterranean after the cataclysmic floods in ancient Mesopotamia. Whenever their population increases, they sacrifice old people to the Eye of Ishtar, which is really natural light coming from the surface. These people have lived underground for so long that they are weakened by bright light which the archaeologists brought in the form of a flashlight. However, there is one girl named Adad who has natural Caucasian skin who is disdained by the others since she has the "mark of darkness." They believe the men are messengers of Ishtar, their goddess.
When one of the archaeologists is killed by a mole person, Elinu, the High Priest, realizes they are not gods. He orders their capture and takes the flashlight to control the Mole People, not knowing it is depleted. The archaeologists are then sent to the Eye just as the Mole People rebel. Adad goes to the Eye only to realize its true nature and that the men had survived. They then leave for the surface. Unfortunately, Adad dies after reaching the surface, when an earthquake causes a column to fall over and crush her. - Source
Movie Monsters #3 - April 1975 Issue - Godzilla, Batman, Forbidden Planet
A large magazine format 8" x 10 3/4 " devoted to television and movie sci-fi and monsters. This black and white magazine utilizes movie stills and studio photos to illustrate this look at horror and space operas similar to the style of Famous Monsters of Filmland.
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Starlog #74 - September 1983 Issue - Return of the Jedi
Eight and a half pages are filled with a look at the making of the many creatures in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. There are lots of color photos -- including three full-pagers -- from the movie, as well as the cover pix, of course.
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On an unrelated note, a full-page color ad has been running in the magazine for a Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Video Game Watch, a $19.95 digital wristwatch that includes a teeny little space attack game on it. No, I never owned one (I'd have rather had the Starlog watch advertised a couple years earlier), but I found it amusing.
74 pages (including covers)
Cover price: $2.95
The magazine's tenth "Starlog Science Fiction Classic" lives up to its name by actually being a classic film, and a rare one at that. It's Barbarella.
Starlog #10 - November 1977 Issue - George Pal
Kerry O'Quinn's From the Bridge editorial frankly gushes with pleasure at the inclusion of big names in this issue, such as Ray Harryhausen (interviewed), George Pal (interviewed), and Isaac Asimov (contributing writer). The letters in the Communications section range from complaining that Starlog bleeped out Harlan Ellison's four-letter words to praising Robbie the Robot.
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Log Entries' short news items include a Japanese fishing boat, the Zuiyo Maru, that found a dead animal believed to be a prehistoric monster, Pigs in Space, a new SF comic called Star Hawks, and the "Earth Sounds" record carried by the Voyager spacecraft. Isaac Asimov explains the unlikelihood of faster-than-light space travel; Susan Sackett's Star Trek Report covers the reunion of the Trek cast on the Paramount lot, and the beginning of the construction of the starship Enterprise model; Kirsten Russell relates the difficulty of getting any reliable information out of the production company putting together Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and a one-page editor's note follows up to say that the production has gotten even more publicity-phobic since Russell's article was put together (the inability of Starlog and Steven Spielberg to share information would come to a head with E.T., which led to an extended editorial by O'Quinn explaining the futility of it all); David Houston looks at the Space Academy TV series; David Gerrold's State of the Art column whacks Space Academy and has some choice words for TV's Logan's Run; David Hirsch writes about the concepts for Space: 1999 that were abandoned; a special eight-page "yellow pages" insert features "The 1st Annual Science-Fiction Merchandise Guide"; Ed Naha contributes an extensive eight-page interview with the great producer George Pal; Richard Meyers then interviews SFX great Ray Harryhausen; Richard Meyers talks with Ralph Bakshi about his animated Lord of the Rings movie; Ed Naha, who began his career as a rock journalist, here contributes "The Rock Connection," looking at the SF-rock intersections (I mean: David Bowie -- 'nuff said); Kerry O'Quinn profiles composer Albert Glasser (who would be the subject of a forthcoming Starlog Records LP); Richard McEnroe writes this issue's SFX section, focusing on homemade special effects movies; and the Visions column wraps it all up by linking Jules Verne with great innovators throughout history.
Starlog #26 - September 1979 Issue - Alien
David Houston interviews Alien director Ridley Scott; Houston also interviews H.R. Giger about his surrealist designs for the movie (and, er, the contents page).
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Howard Zimmerman profiles SF movies about the moon (A Trip to the Moon, Woman in the Moon, 2001: A Space Odyssey, etc.); in an eight-page special fold-out, Starlog's newest photo guidebook, Science Fiction Weapons, is previewed, complete with blueprints; David Hirsh relates how and why Gerry Anderson created the TV production of The Day After Tomorrow; David Houston profiles artist Steve Scherer; Alan Brender interviews Bo Brundin, who plays Rolf Mannheim in the upcoming disaster flick Meteor; a two-page color spread features photos from Moonraker; Susan Sackett discusses the audio side of Star Trek; in Unreel, the magazine takes a look at some of the SF Short Film Search winners; Stephen J. Sansweet uncovers SF toys from Buck Rogers to the present (er, 1979) day; J. Blake Mitchell looks at Grady Hunt's SF costume designs; Don Dixon writes "Secrets of a Space Artist," this month's SFX section; David Gerrold's Rumblings column (which is printed accidentally without the logo, though the logo background appears -- oops) compares Star Trek to later SF TV productions such as Space: 1999 and Battlestar Galactica, which both pale in his comparison; David Houston's Visions column examines Arthur C. Clarke's classic Childhood's End; and Howard Zimmerman's Lastword column praises the movie Alien.
Starlog #27 - October 1979 Issue - Battlestar Galactica
Kerry O'Quinn uses his From the Bridge column to complain about the injection of religion into science stories (using George Pal's Conquest of Space as an example); letter writers fill the Communications section with praise for space artist Adolf Schaller, questions about Obi Wan Kenobi's presence in The Empire Strikes Back, excitement about special effects, bemusement at a religious TV station's censorship of an episode of Battle of the Planets, and more; short news in Log Entries includes note that Saturn 3 has wrapped production, Heavy Metal magazine is making a movie, Soviet displeasure over Battlestar Galactica, Isaac Asimov was approached to write the script for the Battlestar Galactica revival TV film (wouldn't that have been interesting?), and more.
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Starlog #28 - November 1979 Issue - Buck Rogers
Just because Buck's on the cover, it doesn't mean that Starlog's going to treat the time-travelling hero with kid gloves. Though the behind-the-scenes contents page photo (David Houston snapped Gil Gerard getting a quick shave between scenes) is kind of a neat touch, publisher Kerry O'Quinn takes a mallet to Buck Rogers, mourning the jokey, campy aim of the new show and wishing that O'Quinn's friend Gil Gerard would be given the chance to play the character as a real hero. Letters in the Communications pages include a notice that Starlog will be publishing an Official Starlog Communications Handbook, which would become one of the magazine's unique reader-service products of its lifetime, as well as letters from France, Sweden and even the exotic land of North Carolina; Log Entries short items include the completion of filming of Beyond Westworld, the Starlog staff has a picnic, production news of Altered States, the cancellation of plans for an Atlas Shrugged mini series, and more.
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