CRRRRS 501 It Pinged My Zeitgeist

By Roy Mathur, on 2023-09-02, at 23:59:47--01:18:18 BST, for Captain Roy's Rusty Rocket Radio Show

There's a Lot to Say

So let's say it.

Beyond the Black Rainbow

This is a 2010 science fiction horror movie written and directed by Canadian Panos Cosmatos, who also made Mandy (2018) (pod 219). It is his first major film and was made in Vancouver. George P. Cosmatos of Escape to Athena, Cobra, and Tombstone, etc. is his father.

Cultish Mercurio Arboria is dedicated to combining science and spirituality at his institute to further the evolvement of the humans species. Much later, Barry Nyle, Arboria's successor, damaged by drugs administered to him by his mentor many years ago, keeps the super-evolved golden super child, Elena, imprisoned beneath the facility. Eventually she escapes through the maze-like building, passing failed earlier experiments that eventually created her on the way, and a final confrontation with Nyle who deus exs himself by tripping and whacking his head.

I could be wrong in my assumption that Panos Cosmatos is a genre movie nut, with so many recognisable references thrown into this film, but I doubt it. There's the Carpenter-like synth throb of the soundtrack. What about the 70s--80s-style art direction with UFO's Ed Straker's space mod and his cheese wedge-shaped sports car; surely somewhat a model for Barry Nyle, the drive through the tunnel reminds me somewhat of the tunnel in THX 1138, the hazchem suit echoes Planet of the Vampires, 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Andromeda Strain, Swarm, Conan the Barbarian, Terminator, etc. There're sections directly lifted from Altered States, The Man Who Fell to Earth, Blade Runner, Cube, and Scanners; itself a fictional amped up take on the CIA's real MKUltra programme. Let's throw in a bit of the black leather giallo killer with an idiosyncratic fetishistic weapon too (Conan, Mandy) and... Look, the list goes ever on, but this is clearly the work of an SFFH fanboy. Switching the arrow of time in the other direction, it's hard to believe that the movie did not influence Stranger Things across the board.

Side note: I've had experience interviewing creatives, and when you do, and you ask them about their influences, you'll invariably get a noncommittal response, and then a comeback saying something like, "no actually...", so what the hell do I know? But I defy other watchers not to come to the same conclusion. Side side note: I'm convinced creatives, of which I'm one, don't understand their own work and aren't the best people to explain it, unless you want response consisting of banality or worse, arty word salad. Art has a life all of it's own, quite separate from whoever made it or, increasingly, whatever generated it.

Is it good? Stylistically, it's a trippy masterpiece, even though I have read that Cosmatos has a dislike for 60s psychedelia; a position with which I wholeheartedly disagree, and curiously, without drug culture fuelled New Wave sci-fi of the 60s that Cosmotos heavily draws upon, films like this, supposedly critiquing the time, would not exist. Script-wise, the pacing is ponderous, and it is difficult to follow. Michael Rogers is, however, phenomenal as deranged lead, Barry Nyle. Fashion? The 80s-ness of the film makes me sorely miss my lovely beige leisure suit, matching Dad's in powder blue, not that one seems to feature in the film, but that's how it pinged my zeitgeist.


Space captain in our far past goes on one last mission to fund his daughter's medical treatment. Glad to see unrestrained capitalism is a feature of even advanced spacers, like in Outlander (2008) too, in which spaceman from a rapacious civilisation joins Vikings. The mission goes wrong and he crash lands on Earth of 65 million years ago. Then he and the other sole survivor try to outrun dinosaurs to reach their escape ship.

It's a literally breathless adventure, in which Adam Driver's constant breathlessness is completely out of sync with his co-star. That'll teach you to go method, Driver. Why do we even bother with directors anymore? Stop pampering actors!

The 2023 film is okay, but hardly special in any way.


2023 film in which murderous hypnotic supervillain can make people do what they want and only a cop and a lesser hypnotic can stop him as he sets about casing mayhem.

Great concept, with some interesting real-life parallels, Galina Korzhov in early 2000s Russia and the Copenhagen hypnosis murders of the 1950, as well as one, though I'm sure there are many more, in fiction, as is the case of The X-Files: Pusher (1996).

Unfortunately, it is very poorly scripted and boringly staged. I lasted about thirty minutes. A big disappointment from Robert Rodriguez.

The Spine of Night

Very violent and very bloody sword and sorcery rotoscope animated film from 2021 that no one seems to know about.

Similar rotoscopery in sword and sorcery film Fire and Ice (pod 301) springs to mind.

It is a depressing and epic tale of a witch queen, who has her super powered magical blooms stolen by a wizard greedy for power. Mass murder ensues, but ultimately evil is defeated. Though very unusually the film ends with promise of more misery to come. Now that's exactly how you end a tale of sword and sorcery, by Crom!

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

We end on a confrontation with Gorns and meet a yet another Montgomery Scott, and that's it for season 2. There is no release date set for season 3 yet, but I'm sure it's in the works.

Despite my reservations of all the shows that are not TOS: Trekkie4Life.


Wednesday is 2022 Netflix horror comedy, starring Jenna Ortega, about Wednesday Addams at a school for students similar to her, i.e. werewolves, vampires, etc., and becomming embroiled in a murder mystery.

The FX are surprising and wonderfully nasty, Ortega is great, and Chritina Ricci is in it too. However, there are too many one liners, a criticism of the previous movies (because you can't turn a newspaper cartoon into a movie directly) and it's lining up to be a bit too teen soap for my taste, though maybe that's by intention.

If you know me, you'll know that I just had to see at least the first episode because Charles Addam's work is just my body bag/coffin/funeral pyre. As I subscribe to The Cramps on YouTube, no surprise again, I saw the drummer, Kid Congo, speaking glowingly of the dance scene.


Ahsoka follows the journey of Annikin's wayward apprentice, Ahsoka Tano, as she tries to find a threat to the Alliance government in the form of the exiled Imperial Grand Admiral Thrawn. She does this with the help of her own wayward ex-Padawan, a Mandalorian named Sabine Wren, while a couple of Dark Jedis, henching for a witch, try to stop them.

Apart from what others have said and what little I've seen, I don't know much about animated Star Wars. However, I have read and liked Timothy Zahn's Heir to the Empire series about Grand Admiral Thrawn, mainly because I was a fan of Zhan's military science fiction series; Blackcollar and Cobra books from the 80s. So I know about the general milieu, and I am looking forward to seeing Thrawn in the flesh. So far then, most of what I'm watching regarding Ahsoka and Sabine comes from this new series. I know very little else about the characters, but from the way the first three episodes have unfolded, prior knowledge is unnecessary.

The acting is good, the action is good, the effects are good because of course they are, and saying anything else is almost redundant as this is Star Wars. The main starring actresses are also astonishingly attractive; a delightful fact that I'm not going to further qualify. In conclusion, I'm enjoying this, probably a little more than the Mandalorian and on an equal footing with Andor.

Secret Invasion

In the end, fisherman Fury (hat and patch) defeats the bad Skrulls through guile, and saves an American president, who suddenly takes a Nazi-like turn and begins a genocidal campaign to murder all remaining Skrulls on the planet.

So it's a cock up, but at least it ends on a sweet note, with Nick and his amore departing together on a spaceship to broker a peace between the Kree and the Skrulls.

Sensationalists: The Bad Girls and Boys of British Art

This BBC documentary charts the course of the Young British Artists (god, I hate this marketing tripe) of the 90s, like annoying art upstarts Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin of debatable talent upsetting the equally annoying stuffed shirt traditional art establishment.

It's fascinating and will leave you very very envious and very very irritated with these not-to-young anymore super rich artists.


I said how much I enjoy TMZ in 498, and I do, but I don't like how judgemental and patronising the presenters can get. My "urgh" moment came when listening to the recent coverage of Britney Spears.

Added to that, their recent Last Days videos about celebrity deaths makes it seem the scandal mag is going full-on Stephen King's Inside View.

Be less icky, TMZ.

Quest for the Legendary Bronze Key of Bog

A quest for a National Radar Key, ended in a mission around the city as my satnav went potty, until, after much faffage, we found a tiny little door set into the side of a big church, that opened, TARDIS-like, into a small office.

I should say at this point, that the reason I need a key isn't that I need an accessible toilet in particular, but because I just need a toilet as a sufferer of IBS and if the only one available is an accessible one, then that will have to do.

Back to the tale. Due to an error of perceived scale, thanks to internet photographs, I was expecting a key-sized key, but instead was presented with the type of heavy brass key that should open a slab-like dungeon portal from whence there is no hope of escape. As it turned out, my father needed one too due to an operation that has left him with the need to pee several times an day and night, and my mother too, since an operation many years ago. So after obtaining the Key of Bog for GBP 3, about 60 seconds later I returned to the sacred cave for two more.

My first chance to test my pee and poo power was a abject failure at Cafe Tropea in Russell Square Gardens, which only had a toilet "for staff" or if you "buy something" according to one of their snottily helpful customers. I should have marked my territory in their stupid cafe.

I have since looked up locations of all toilets, as well as Radar ones, and found that Central London is a relative desert of places to go (I mean if you have to go), and it's even worse if you need an accessible one. There are some though, all of which I missed because I didn't do my homework.

Russell Square Gardens Picnic

Russell Square? Yes, I was invited to a picnic there a few Saturdays ago. It was poorly attended, but I had a nice chat, a bit of cake, and ended up at the Doric Arch pub. Aside time with more bog talk: the same geezer who helped me negotiate the keypad of toilet door on my last visit, helped me out again this time. Maybe he's a regular.

There was a little walking involved on my second recent visit to London, but nothing like the mission of 496, nonetheless, it took me the whole of Sunday to recover. The distance between Euston to Russell Square is only a few hundred metres, but I went via Tottenham Court Road, sadly now mostly bereft of the little tech shops shop with assistants taking fag breaks outside and replaced with posh crap. I again complained to my physio, who originally told me to just go for it, that all the walking was wrecking my joints and I have another appointment soon.

Diabetes Prevention Course

I've joined a group course to lower my blood sugar after slightly elevated levels were found in my blood. Like a lot of NHS services, the course has been outsourced to private and very very for profit health company, Xyla, part of Acacium, part of Onex Corporation, and ultimately owned by Canadian billionaire Gerald Schartz. Boo.

My first visit was orchestrated to incessant intro muzak that was supposed to cheer us up was looped like the tunes you listen to in the lift that takes you to hell. It set off my misophonia, until a couple of us complained.

Because of my IBS limiting the chowing down of every veggie under the sun, I was told to ask my GP to see a dietician consultation. That huge stumbling block aside, which negated most of the reason for attendance in the first place, the course seemed to be largely educational and motivational. Though why a nurse or GP can't provide this service inside the NHS is far beyond me.

Anyway, for the purpose of the latter, we were weighed. Sans phone and shoes, I'm around 90.5 Kg, minus another half a kilogram for cloths, I'm probably 90 Kg. Let's see if I can improve on that the next time I go in, and report back in the pod too. I walked there and back---about 7.5 KM---so that must be a good start.


There are a few excellent new variants.

We'll probably need to be vaccinated again; once a year; in perpetuity.

Get used to it.

Death Threat

I was on thee nasty end of an old school analogue death threat, while out walking with my mum on the 28th. A random man suddenly became incensed for absolutely no reason as he passed us and started spewing a murderous rant. Disturbingly, he was squaring up for a physical attack as we hurried away, but the incident scared the crap out of me.

I ended up staying in for two days afterwards, endlessly worrying and missing an important appointment. My mum seemed okay at first, but delayed shock set in a couple of days later. I finally bit the bullet and the man should rejoice in that I reported him to the police. What good it will do, I don't know, but I'm sick and tired of letting stuff like this go, especially since my mother was involved. During the incident his behavior escalated so rapidly, who knows what will happen when he blows a fuse next time, so I feel doubly justified making an official police report.

I don't know why so many minor incidents go from 0 to 60 in less than a second. It's something to bear in mind before blowing up a situation into one that will land a person in prison.

Michael Parkinson, Kevin Mitnick

Mitnick, was the famous hacker who went on the run, was caught and jailed, then ran a successful security company afterwards.

Parkinson, was a UK talk show host, famous for interviewing almost everyone who was anyone for years, including Muhammad Ali. Growing up, his show was a staple of the Mathur household.

RIP to both.

I Hope You Survived

This was a long show, I hope not too long, but we had a lot to catch up on.