Muldoon returns with a two headed sea monster
Mark goes searching for some dangerous canisters that are buried deep in the ocean. The known location for them is near an island where the natives worship a two-headed sea monster to whom they bring human sacrifices. Turns out that the sea monster is a relatively harmless visitor from another dimension and is being controlled by con man Muldoon (Ted Nealy returns!).
Pretty boring episode. I really couldn’t figure what Muldoon was trying here. The sea monster (more on that later) doesn’t devour the ladies, of course, and Muldoon just keeps them with him in his underwater cave. At one point they’re seen playing on the beach but the rest of the time they’re just hanging around – I guess. I mean; they’ve been sacrificed – they’re father and brothers think they’re dead. And the girls are OK with that. And all Muldoon gets out of this are, to quote him; “worthless pearls”. Oh well!
It’s actually fairly interesting to watch the interplay between Duffy and Nealy. Duffy, obviously the better actor, plays this so straight and gives (always) a convincing performance. Nealy, on the other hand, is more relaxed and care-free and his performance is somewhat jokey and hokey – in essence more suited to what’s actually happening on screen. It’s quite clear (and has been for a number of episodes) that the series had a huge identity crisis and didn’t know what it was aiming for. Also here is the late, hulking Ted Cassidy who gives this material more actual quality acting than it deserves.
The sea monster is, as you probably guessed, incredibly fake looking and quite hilarious. It’s a man in a suit, obviously, and I want to give shout-out to one Tony Urbano who must have had a terrible time strutting around in that suit. Hope he got paid well.
Anyway; it’s a tie between this episode and “Man O’War” as for who’s the worst offender of “Man From Atlantis” so far. I have a huge tolerance for hokey entertainment but this was a real chore.
To end with some positives; good locations, nice to see Ted Cassidy and his baritone voice is impressive (kept thinking of his opening narration in “The Incredible Hulk” series; “Dr. David Banner. Physician, scientist, searching for a way……”) and Ted Nealy is a likable guy. Not a great actor (and very short!) but serviceable enough.