Back before the dinosaurs died off (sometime around 1968), a little film called Mad Monster Party made its way to my local theater, and like any kid…I had to see it. So, armed with some cash courtesy of my parents, I marched in and was handed a clip-on button that simply read “The Green Slime Are Coming.” I had no idea what that entailed, but if it’s slimy and green…I’m there. It took an agonizing four weeks but one day the marquee read “Saturday at noon..The Green Slime.” This was it, no turning back: Give me the worst chores you got, mom, cause I’m going to see The Green Slime, and I need money.
That being said, let me tell you all about it.
An asteroid is on a collision course with Earth–cue psychedelic late ’60s rock from Richard Delvy and we are on our way. They blast it out of the sky and it falls on Jack Rankin (Robert Horton of Wagon Train fame) to do it. He’s rushed off to Gamma 3, run by his former friend Vince Elliott (Richard Jaeckel). Apparently they had a falling out over Dr. Lisa Benson (played by Luciana Paluzzi, who real nerds know as Fiona Volpe from Thunderball) and an active member of Gamma 3. After quick hellos and some macho posturing, Vince asks to join the team and is welcomed aboard. Guess he didn’t hear the chances of outrunning the blast are next to nothing.
Reaching the asteroid they split into three groups, drilling and planting explosives when they encounter a greenish ooze that forces them to abandon their equipment and head back to the ship on foot. Dr. Halverson (Ted Gunther) is reluctant to leave this discovery behind but time is running out and they have to go. No one notices the green splotch on the leg of one of the spacesuits and off they go, miraculously surviving the blast. Their spacesuits are put into decontamination and this causes the slime to mutate and grow into a one-eyed, multi-tentacled monstrosity that lives on and kills through electricity. (Why do I NOT have a toy of this in my collection? I must be getting old.)
Once it’s discovered, they try to capture it with gas guns and rope…no such luck. Lasers prove even more harmful. Their blood grows into even more of the creatures. How do you kill something that feeds and grows off your weapons? After an attack on the infirmary, they trap one of them in there and watch on the monitor as its blood begins to congeal and form more creatures. Elliott devises a plan that will lure them all to C Block, where the power will be shut off and the monsters hopefully contained. What could possibly go wrong? Well, Doctor Halverson for one decides his research is much too valuable to lose, so he rushes into C Block to retrieve it and gets baked. Elliott opens the block door to save him and this allows the Green Slime to run loose once again.
The decision is made to evacuate and destroy the station but the hatch won’t open. Apparently they are all over the outside of the ship as well and, against orders, Elliott takes a team out to fight them off. Will the ship be able to escape? Can Elliott and Rankin put their differences aside to save the day? Will the earth fall to the Green Slime? One way to find out: Watch and Enjoy The Green Slime. Cue that groovy theme song, baby.
The film was directed by Kinji Fukasaku, who you may know better for his two Battle Royale films. He also shot the Japanese footage for Tora! Tora! Tora! and the fantastic Yakuza film Graveyard of Honor. Well, I can’t believe the new year is upon us already. Seems like I just started doing this and thanks to the greatest girlfriend in the world I’ll be in New York next week seeing Pee Wee’s Playhouse on Broadway, so my Christmas went ok. Getting the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future out of the house was a chore, though. Emptied my fridge and all my Sam Adams Seasonal, so they are NOT getting back in next year. Hope you all have a safe New Year’s night and come back for more because we’re just scratching the surface. By the way….I STILL have the button.