Episode 63: Octaman (1971)

Need a real turkey for Thanksgiving?? Then look no further than Octaman, a hideously poor eco-gobbler with eight, count ’em, eight legs….er, arms…er tentacles. Whatever. Octaman is a laughably stupid film about a group of idiot scientists and greedy cowboys who search a “primitive hispanic community” for a legendary monster, “1/2 man, 1/2 fish”. Of course, octopi are not fish, but that doesn’t seem to matter much to the makers of this film, because they also don’t shamble about on land in a rubber suit with wires and a zipper plainly in view, they don’t live in fresh water, and they don’t have a flock of whining little plastic octo-buddies. Turns out that ol’ Octo is a mootant, created by pollution, or radiation, or some such thing – somecow or another humanity is to blame, yet again. Egads! Come and join your old pal the Moocow, along with Special Guest Co-Hosts Leila and Bobby (back again for some moore IFC shenanigans!) on our latest podcast episode!

“We’re going to regret being in this picture aren’t we?” “You bet your octo-pies…”

So. big Octo doesn’t like the way that the dopey scientists are carving up his fake, rubber, whining little octo-friends, so he shambles about like the grimacing Tabonga in “From Hell It Came”, slapping people with his rubbery arms whenever possible. As if that weren’t enough, Octo then develops an odd sexual fixation on Pier Angeli (“Viva America!”), grabs her, and then ambles about with her in his many arms (Pier died during the filming of this moovie, possibly of acute embarrassment). The scientists try to capture Octo to put him on display by surrounding him in a ring of fire, thereby “eating up all the oxygen around him”. Very clever…but, Octo breaks free, gets back into the water, and is able to wave his rubbery arms menacingly yet again. The end. Co-starring Jeff Morrow (Giant Claw) and Kerwin Mathews (7th Voyage of Sinbad). The Director’s son, David Essex, plays the uncowvincing half-Indian, half-Mexican Davido, the bad wood carver with the weird nose.

Fair warning, Shaved Apes: I have Lord Cthulhu on speed dial!

Rick Baker may win 1,000s of Academy Awards from now ’til Doomsday for his make-up special effects, but he will NEVER live down this shaggy skeleton in his fx closet – although he moost share the ‘credit’ with Doug Bestwick. Poor Octo is one of the moost uncowvincing monsters in film history; his pathetic shamblings evoke moore sighs than actual laughs because Director Harry Essex (who wrote the screenplay for Creature from the Black Lagoon) really thought the sight of a guy in a rubber octopus suit walking about on land would be scary. Ahh, to be that naive again…Armed with eyes that never blink, a mouth that never closes, and arms which are tied suspended together by wire, poor Octo is a slow, silly, classic stinky moovie shambling monster gone horribly, horribly wrong. Well, Rick, we all have to start from somewhere…

Come with me to the Casbahhhhhhh…..

The MooCow’s favorite scene is when Octo surprises the scientists by leaping out of their RV, where he was presumably hiding his zipper and wired arms, and then bitch-slaps the shit out of everyone. Ya know, a lot of low budget/micro budget horror flicks might try to camouflage or hide their shambling critter in shadows, so that the audience can’t really see it, and allow their imagination to paint the picture – not in this film! You cowstantly see the silly octo-suit in all its shambolic glory! But its moore than a stinky suite: poor direction, uncowvincing acting, talky script, and muddled, murky cinematography all help to chop this calamari caper into so much sushi.

Imma slap the taste outta yo mouth, bitch!

And the scores are in! Ok, its been a while for Leila and Bobby to score a moovie for IFC, not since Zombie Cop, so Leila originally gave it a 3 when she really meant a 7. Details, details. Bobby went with a 5, figuring it Middle of the Road. And yer ol pal the Moocow went with a 7.5, which is pretty generous for him. This gives Octaman a Stinky Total of 19.5, and a Stinky Average of 6.5 – not too bad!

Trailerage! We gots it right HERE! And the full moovie is on the Tube of You. But for those of you, like us, who prefer to have our stink in hand (as it were), then you absolutely moost have the physical medium – get the special 40th anniversary dvd at Amazon, and regular dvd versions at Walmart, Monsters in Motion, and Barnes and Noble. Get the oh-so mooovelous blu ray special (with Essex’s the Cremators) also at Amazon and Grindhouse Video! And don’t forget the udderly fantastic Rifftrax version too! For those of you who love stinky moovie swag (and who doesn’t??), here you can find a kewl Octaman throw pillow, Octaman travel mug, and even an Octaman phone case! Git yer hooves on the full color poster from Moviepostershop.com. It will also show up from time to time on Canadian Ebay, eh? Grab an awesome Octaman tee shirt at TeePublic! Also at Redbubble. And cow on earth can you enjoy your coffee without that extra-kewl Octaman coffee mug? Find it at Threadless too, along with a bunch of udder stuff (I mean who doesn’t want an Octaman skateboard?)!

I’m fishin’ for a mission…

We loves this stinky moovie – the MooCow says check it out!

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