When it came to movie monsters in the early atomic age, bigger was always better. From Godzilla to The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms to Tarantula and Attack of the 50 Foot Woman, the formula was the same: big monsters, small budget. It was a head-on collision of science fiction and horror, and creature features have never been the same.
The anthology ATTACK! of the B-Movie Monsters: Night of the Gigantis, from Grinning Skull Press, returns to that golden age of schlock with 21 tales of gigantism gone wrong.
But these aren’t your grandfather’s big monsters. Night of the Gigantis features some of the most unusual and unexpected B-movie creatures you’ll ever come across. There are acid slugs, overgrown sea lions, enormous catfish, oversized tapeworms, tentacular potatoes, and even a killer pet rock.
Highlights of the 340-page collection, edited by Harrison Graves, include Jonah Buck’s suspenseful “The Worm People Want Your Limbs,” Brent Abell’s playful “Stone Cold Horror from the Stars,” Kerry G.S. Lipp’s absurd “BFF,” and Jay Wilburn’s irreverent “Giant Mutant Tiger Slugs vs. Salty Angel Gimp Warriors in Leather.”
The anthology perfectly captures the cheesiness and fun of those old creature features. It’s all there: the irresponsible scientists, the sexy (or is it sexist?) heroines, the clichéd dialogue, the idiotic plans. But it’s clear the authors wrote with their tongues firmly in their cheeks and that’s the book’s saving grace. Where it falters is in its over-reliance on those well-worn giant monster movie tropes. Don’t expect too many surprises. But if you miss those big monsters of yore, pretend you’re at the drive-in, crack open ATTACK! of the B-Movie Monsters: Night of the Gigantis, suspend your disbelief, and you’ll have a blast.