â€œWhiskey and soda mix, not whiskey and science.â€ This statement is heard early in the cult classic,Â The Hideous Sun Demon, and this episodeâ€™s Grue Crew doesnâ€™t buy it for a second. Join Chad Hunt, Joseph Perry, and Jeff Mohr as they study the statementâ€™s validity and have a ball along the way withÂ The Hideous Sun DemonÂ (1958).
Decades of Horror: The Classic Era
Episode 41 â€“Â The Hideous Sun DemonÂ (1958)
Dr. Gilbert McKenna has â€œan accidentâ€ when he is handling highly radioactive material while suffering from a hangover. Gil seems to quickly recover, but when exposed to direct sunlight, he rapidly transforms into the hideous sun demon. Gilâ€™s doctor prescribes avoiding the sunâ€™s rays, but for a guy like Gil, thatâ€™s not as easy as it sounds. When the sun is down, Gil restlessly cavorts about town and encounters the beautiful Trudy (Nan Peterson) who is singing and playing air-piano at a rundown nightspot. Unfortunately, he also runs into her thuggish boyfriend George (Peter Similuk), who proves to be a problem. While all this is happening, Gilâ€™s coworkers, Ann (Patricia Manning) and Dr. Buckell (Patrick Whyte), work to find a cure for Gilâ€™s newly acquired condition.
A low budget creature feature inspired by the financial success ofÂ The Astounding She-MonsterÂ (1957),Â The Hideous Sun DemonÂ is the brainchild ofÂ Robert ClarkeÂ who produces, directs, co-writes, and plays the lead in the film. Primary writers of the screenplay areÂ E. S. Seeley Jr. andÂ Doane R. Hoag.
Your Grue Crew wasnâ€™t sure what to expect withÂ The Hideous Sun Demon, but it turned out to be a barrel of fun, despite its low-budget related flaws. Jeff points out Clarkeâ€™s extensive use of family members in bit parts on the film. Chad feels it was like watching two different movies; one a fairly standard, radiation-created creature feature and the other, a noirish story complete with brutish thugs and a femme fatale. Joseph agrees that at times, it seems like Nan Peterson was channeling Marilyn Monroe with the lilt of her voice and the way she played a scene. At any rate,Â The Hideous Sun DemonÂ was fun throughout and the Grue Crew gives it a big low budget, cult classic thumbs up!
The Decades of Horror: The Classic Era Grue Crew plan to release a new episode every other week. The next episode in our very flexible schedule will be the silent scream,Â The Phantom of the OperaÂ (1925)! They canâ€™t wait to discuss the brilliance of the legendary Lon Chaney!
Please let us know what you think of Decades of Horror: The Classic Era! We want to hear from you! After all, without you, weâ€™re just four nutjobs talking about the films we love. Send us an email or leave us a message, a review, or a comment at GruesomeMagazine.com, iTunes, Stitcher, Google Podcast, or the Horror News Radio Facebook group.
To each of you from each of us, â€œThank you for listening!â€