Pod 9 From Outer Space Fantastic Planet

Nick

It’s another episode of pod 9 from outer space.

Liz

Cue the music!

Opening theme.

LIZ

I think this one is your fault.

NICK

It was, I take the blame. Also I’m[ not sorry.

LIZ

This… What was it joint French Czech…

NICK

Like all the best films.

LIZ

Animation about humans have been taken to another planet and are basically an infestation/pet, and one of them escapes, finds a feral population, then they go to a second planet and there’s a battle between them and the giant blue aliens and they decide to be friends.

NICK

If you guess the name of this film you get a shard of mug.

LIZ

It’s in the name of the episode. Is that why it’s not a whole mug?

NICK

It’s not worth much. In case you haven’t guessed from the title, the film is Forbidden Planet.

LIZ

And it’s from the 70s and boy howdy can you tell.

NICK

Howdy bots indeed you can certainly tell.

LIZ

If your favourite part of Monty python is the animated bits you’ll love it.

NICK

Especially the foot from heaven, stuff like that.

LIZ

Oh yeah, cause there’s a big blue hand like that.

NICK

I am loathe to describe things as Pythonesque because that just describes things that are funny and not overtly racist, but that was Pythonesque.

LIZ

Yeah, I haven’t enjoyed a lot of Gilliam’s Monty python stuff but the animation in Monty python was top notch. I’m convinced he has seen this film.

NICK

Definitely. I’m just thinking what Brazil would be like if it looked like this film.

LIZ

Better? Stranger? But better.

NICK

I’d say so. There’s plenty of stuff I like in that film, that goes for a lot of gilliam stuff, there’s bits where I go yeah I’m enjoying it but then less so.

LIZ

You can see why he was less involved in writing the films, does better with short stuff. But this isn’t about Terry gilliam, this is about Rene Laloux and Roland Topor. Which I’m probably saying wrong.

NICK

I think you should say them five times fast.

LIZ

No. I will say the name of the person who did the music though, it was amazing. Alain Ger-gerriger? I’m going with Gerriger. You lived in France, you try.

NICK

I just want to say Gerriger.

LIZ

He’s probably not listening, if you are good job Alain.

NICK

Yeah, merci.

LIZ

Bonchamps.

NICK

Champs-elysses, notre dame, je suis amelie.

LIZ

Defonce decrachee.

NICK

Au revoir. Now that we’ve got all our French out of the way…

LIZ

Do you know any Czech?

NICK

not offhand. Before we go on I’d like to go into more detail about the music because as you said you can tell it’s a 70s film partly because it takes a lot visually from classic 50s-70s sci-fi.

LIZ

If you follow anything like tales from weirdland it’ll be quite a familiar aesthetic.

NICK

Yeah. It looked a lot like some pulp magazine covers brought to life which is great, but the music was…there was a lot of wah. Combination of a lot of wah and also some real kind of… I want to say blissed out 70s electronica.

LIZ

A lot of it seems like a music video your dad would put on.

NICK

Yeah, a lot of it seems like Michel Gondry and Terry Gilliam teaming up to do a video for a collaboration by AIR and Funkadelic.

LIZ

I want that. I would listen to that.

NICK

I’d cherish it, I’d take it into my own bosom and nurture it as twere my own bairn.

LIZ

As someone who knows something about music production what are your more coherent thoughts on the music. Cause as someone who cannot play an instrument in any way shape or form is pretty much I like it, is good.

NICK

One thing I found is the music didn’t necessarily add drama to what was happening because there were some moments of musical confluence with the action which some might call sort of Mickey Mouse composing, say someone gets hit and falls over and there’s accompanying musical sound effects which takes you out of it. During the chase sequences there was a lot of wah going on which was great but didn’t give a sense of urgency. The other place I’ve heard that happen was Disney 70s Robin Hood.

LIZ

That’s not the furry one right?

NICK

That’s the furry one.

LIZ

I didn’t know it’s that old.

NICK

Yeah, early mid 70s. One of the 70s.

LIZ

There are ten of them.

NICK

Yes one of the ten 70s.

LIZ

This was 73 if you’re trying to remember.

NICK

Yeah 73. In aid of general mood not setting up a chase sequences, wasn’t about trying to add gravity to a dangerous situation, when it was about the planet, the creatures, the music was very blissful spaced out in every way. It felt very contemporary in a way, I’ve listened to music like that that’s a lot more recent. In fact, something I’m doing later is tracking it down on spotify or youtube, so I can have it as background in doing stuff.

LIZ

There’s a stereotype in the trans community that trans women make kind of electronic music, and I feel like this feels like trans music. In the best possible way.

NICK

That’s why we’re gravitating towards It.

LIZ

Maybe. But the etherealness you definitely get… The blue aliens are called the Draag, the whole thing is meditation to prolong their lives and they have all these weird sci-fi technologies, but also astral projection into statues on this other planet where they have sex to prolong their lives.

NICK

Because why not.

LIZ

Why not indeed.

NICK

It’s been an hour a couple hours since we watched this film and I’m turning it over in my head to find out what I feel about it.

LIZ

Yeah it takes a while to process I think.

NICK

I think that’s one of the reasons it’s a semi-respected film, one of the more respectable films I’ve chosen for this -podcast cause it was given a restoration and re-release by Criterion and Janus, which is known for other films putting out classic works of world cinema like Kurosawa or Jean Renoir.

LIZ

I’ve seen some Janus. Can’t remember offhand, because you’ve probably guessed by now from the suggestions I don’t really lean towards art cinema.

NICK

And I do, more’s the pity.

LIZ

We balance each other out.

NICK

We do. Tell you what one cross over thing – Bunuel films, that’s Janus.

LIZ

Oh yeah, Bunuel’s fun.

NICK

Founded in 1968 by Hugh Janus.

LIZ

I will remind you this is a clean -podcast.

NICK

He’s a clean man. Two showers a day.

LIZ

I’ve been spending the two hours since we watched it among other things working out if it’s trying to say anything because the way the people are treated is the worst excesses of fashion pets with also some dog fighting, as in they are the dogs. I think there’s two who are tied together and they’re made to fight. It’s halfway between a PETA ad and Planet of the Apes which is very confusing when you’re trying to work out why what they’re actually trying to say, is it be nice to our pets or they’ll try to take over?

NICK

See, the thing is, I’m putting on my serious film analysis hat, at the extreme end of occupation and dehumanisation the line blurs. You did get human zoos. And when, more glibly, when I see 60s-70s sci-fi that deals with an occupying force I assume Vietnam reference.

LIZ

They aren’t an occupying force though, the humans were brought to this planet as a sort of novelty and then end up with some I don’t want to say domesticated cause that implies selective breeding which I don’t think is happening, but some are kept as pets and some are wild. The closest thing is pet rodents, but if pet rodents joined forced with wild rodents and sewer rats and killed an MP is the closest equivalent of the position of the Draag who gets killed. If pet rats and sewer rats team up and kill an MP, wouldn’t that be wild is the point of this film.

NICK

I’d see that.

LIZ

Fievel goes bananas.

NICK

Fievel’s bad fur day.

LIZ

Don’t watch Fievel Goes West.

NICK

It’s not as good as I remember.

LIZ

American Tail slaps though.

NICK

American tail is fantastic. It’s got great themes, storytelling wise, music wise and otherwise wise.

LIZ

Going back to the thematic stuff of the film though there’s also the boss of the feral population treats them very similarly to how the draag treats them is pretty cool as a concept he restricts access to education for uncertain reasons it might make them like the draag?

NICK

Yeah the assumption is it would be more propaganda kind of thing.

LIZ

It is to an extent but he also makes them settle disputes by fighting? Their population because they’re teeny tiny pests they’re removed shall we say from various draag places, including the park they’re hiding in, when you have fights to the death when you’re under that kind of threat it’s not a good idea. Especially over minor things like should we learn to read?

Bread and Thread is plugged here. You eat food and wear clothes so I’m guessing you would like to learn more about them. Everyone else is. Check it out above.

Furthermore, Probably Bad Podcast is a great podcast, featuring the mods of the web-famous blog. It’s also above.

LIZ

In the context of this it’s a minor dispute.

NICK

Generally speaking PTA meetings don’t end in trial by combat.

LIZ

Very orphan black.

NICK

They tried it in Swansea it didn’t take. They got back up. Speaking of the park thing that’s one thing I very much liked it how they manage to work in the difference in scale thing especially as the education of the protagonist happened by accident as he’s so small he’s unnoticed while his owner is listening to her lessons he managed to pick up on it.

LIZ

Because it’s a sci-fi headset. He’s got a control collar which glitched and picked up the lesson. I really liked that. Went straight from her brain to his collar.

NICK

It’s neat. A good act in a story things can happen by chance they can be happy accidents but what matters is the protagonist taking initiative.

LIZ

Because the protagonist decides to learn on his own.

NICK

And he explores as much as he can. It’s a spark that starts off a fire. To come back to scale, I like that the park the epitome of controlled nature is a wilderness when you’re small. That’s a lovely use of scale in both the setting and as a core part of the plot, makes them more vulnerable but more able to sneak around. It’s a lovely David and Goliath story. Thinking about it I enjoyed it, as much ass I laughed and found it weird and a bit booby.

LIZ

A lot of boobs, not really sexualised but in the way of I’m wearing the lady version of a loincloth and I’ve a boob out way. But then the leader of the humans put a special light on everyone and they undressed and had sex. I think that’s a side effect of 70s and French.

NICK

There’s gonna be boobs. I didn’t mind the loincloth thing, why wouldn’t they not have our hang ups.

LIZ

Especially as the draag do the same.

NICK

Hang ups in this case being bras.

LIZ

I believe the correct term is over shoulder boulder holder. Do what did we learn? I learned that you should probably be nicer to sewer rats.

NICK

I learned there are better ways to talk out your problems than trial by combat.

LIZ

You had to learn that?

Nick

Yeah, I wasn’t that swotty. And that reading can be good. Sometimes.

LIZ

That’s fair.

NICK

I want to watch more French 70s sci-fi.

LIZ

That may be one of many things we feel will make a return.

NICK

Do you have any thoughts about next episode?

LIZ

I haven’t decided.

NICK

Now let’s talk about campness, I don’t think we rated the latest film?

LIZ

I don’t think we did, it can be taken as read it was.

NICK

I can’t remember which one.

LIZ

Cat women of the moon. This one not hugely. It was weird but I don’t think camp would be the right word. It was… Generally wild. Or possibly feral.

NICK

It was a coup[e chalets at all tomorrow’s parties. The overriding impression is that of hipster art house with guitars.

LIZ

Not so much camp as glamp.

NICK

I’d say so.

LIZ

I’ve been thinking and I know that a couple of our regular listeners love and appreciate so much have tumblrs I was wondering if we should have a tumblr.

NICK

I think so.

LIZ

I’ll put it on the twitter which is pod9podcast when we get a tumblr. I’ll probably also use as a place to talk about the other terrible films I watch. If you want to support us you can go to ko-fi.com/pod9 help us with hosting and things like that, also surviving lock down. So thanks for listening.

NICK

Thank you very much and I will meet you next episode at the special meditation booby planet.

Closing music.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: