Episode 116. Carrying On: The Quatermass Xperiment

In this episode we look at what happens when an American experiment crash lands in the British countryside. By looking at the state of England after two World Wars, a crisis of masculinity and humanity’s shaky grasp on scientific responsibility, Andrea and Alex uncover what is truly driving innovation and our need to win. 


The Quatermass Xperiment. Dir. Val Guest, 1955. 


Hammer and Beyond by Peter Hutchings. An in-depth examination of the studio and its impact. 
Seeing is Believing by Peter Biskind. A definitive text for American films in the 1950s. 
The Imagination of Disaster. Susan Sontag’s essay about the role of science-fiction in the midst of the Cold War. 


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3 thoughts on “Episode 116. Carrying On: The Quatermass Xperiment

  1. Was so happy to hear you reference Robert Merton. His “Matthew Effect” is based on the following: “‘To him who has more shall be given and from him who has not even that which he has shall be taken.” He coined this in 1968 (presciently it turns out). I came across it for my course Psychopharmacology at University. Author David Healy, cited Merton noting it perfectly explained why pharmaceutical firms don’t take chances. Those with the most money are likely to keep it. Those who gamble on innovation and lose, will lose the whole company in a merger. The Healy book is “The Antidepressant Era.” 🙂

  2. PS: Can anyone tell me where the Salem Horror Fest takes place and what close hotels may be? Would very much appreciate it!

  3. FictionIsntReal says:

    The interpretation I’ve read for the scene with the little girl is that Carroon still retained enough of his old personality that he didn’t want to kill her, as he had a number of people (but not his wife) who saw his mutated hand. So not really a rejection of the nuclear family.

    To me a striking thing about Cold War movies is how often they avoided the USSR as the villain. The novel Dr. No had title character aligned with the Soviet bloc, but the film made him part of SPECTRE instead. And that despite them being a more obvious singular “Big Bad” (as you put it) than in WW2, where Japan was the country that actually attacked the US and was more independent vs Germany than communist states were vs the USSR. People can read in a political message to Invasion of the Body Snatchers, but author Jack Finney explicitly denied anything was intended other than entertainment.

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