My Favorite Martians

Hollywood aims its cameras at the Fourth Rock From the Sun

It! The Terror From Beyond Space--(MGM/UA Home Video) Widely believed to be the inspiration for Alien, this grim 1958 space opera concerns a hulking, murderous Martian (Ray "Crash" Corrigan) wreaking havoc as a stowaway on a return flight to Earth. At the end, we are warned, "Another name for Mars is Death!"

Robinson Crusoe on Mars--(laser disk; The Criterion Collection) Paul Mantee played the title role, a marooned American astronaut, in this 1964 update of the Daniel Defoe novel. Vic Lundin plays Friday, here an escaped alien slave. With future Batman Adam West and a monkey.

Mars Needs Women--(Orion Home Video) So, you may ask, what makes Mars a special case? This 1968 cheapie from Texas schlockmeister Larry Buchanan had a Martian envoy (Tommy Kirk of Old Yeller) arrive on Earth in search of a few good women for breeding purposes. Yvonne Craig, better known as TV's Batgirl, is the Earth gal with whom he falls in love.

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