Lunchtime reading: The Things

Kurt Russell prepares to face The Thing in John Carpenter's 1982 film.

The prequel to John Carpenter’s seminal 1982 sci-fi horror, ‘The Thing’, is released in the UK this week. Carpenter’s version is one of my favourite films, so I am quietly excited to find out whether this new addition can reach anything like the same levels of tension. The word on the internet is not encouraging, but then we don’t have the records to see whether everyone was declaring that Carpenter’s film “definitely won’t be as good as Howard Hawks’ 1952 adaptation” before it was even released.

I encourage you to find a copy of the short story that inspired it all, John W. Campbell’s ‘Who Goes There’, which I have in the rather wonderful compilation ‘Between Time and Terror‘ (which also features tales by HP Lovecraft, Richard Matheson, etc).

The meat of your lunchtime reading comes courtesy of Peter Watts and Clarkesworld magazine, however. Watts is a biologist and science fiction author, and this is a terrific short story that takes a look at Carpenter’s film from a rather different perspective:

‘The Things’, by Peter Watts


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