Okay, I have a confession to make: I quit watching the Sci-Fi Channel even before its recent (and frankly insulting to fans of speculative fiction) name switch to Syfy.
In fact, if memory serves, I abandoned the network right around the time they cancelled Mystery Science Theater 3000 and replaced it with five nights a week of John Edwards (the charlatan who claims to talk to dead people, not the former Vice Presidential candidate with the pants problem) and I've never looked back.
Hey -- what can I tell you? Some things are simply unforgiveable.
Anyway, here's interesting Syfy news -- via Pop Culture Zoo -- that might make me rethink my viewing habits.
One word: Sharktopus!
Roger Corman is arguably the king of American B-movies in general and hokey yet fun monster movies. In particular, Corman is now producing Sharktopus for Syfy and the channel has just announced that Academy Award and Golden Globe nominee Eric Roberts(!) will star.
Already the talk of the Internet, Sharktopus is about a research scientist (Roberts) and his talented daughter who develop a secret military weapon -- a hybrid shark/octopus that can be controlled by electrical implants. But when the controls break down, the monster goes on a killing rampage at the resort beaches of Mexico.
As I said, interesting news, and I have no doubt that the resultant film -- which will apparently air on Syfy this fall -- will be better than Avatar, even if it isn't. Still, and while I yield to no sentient mammal in my admiration for Roger Corman and his fifty(!) plus years of making wonderfully cheesy monster flicks, I remain skeptical that he'll be able to top some of the Saturday night offerings from the glory days -- say around 2005 -- of the old Sci-Fi.
One more word: Mansquito!
Without question the finest budgeted-under-a-million-dollars-movie to ever have premiered on the then appropriately monikered cable outlet, Mansquito is the cautionary tale of a charming sociopath who accidentally gets dosed with some kind of mutated West Nile Virus and turns into the titular cross between man and mosquito. Much carnage ensues until hero cop Corin Nemec (formerly of Stargate SG-1) sprays him with Raid. Or something -- I haven't seen since it since its initial airing and I seem to recall I was drunk at the time.
Here are a few choice scenes to give you the, er, buzz, as it were.
Like I said, Corman's Jaws/Calamari hybrid will have a long way to go to top that. In the meantime, you can -- and obviously -- should order the DVD of Mansquito, now available under the far less interesting title Mosquito Man, over here.