The Kraken vs. Mark Dery

Did you catch Mark Dery's profound feature on the first-ever footage of a giant squid at home in the deep?

Time and again, marauding cephalopods rise out of the fathomless depths of our collective unconscious, from the 12-armed Scylla in Homer’s Odyssey, plucking men from passing ships like canapés off a waiter’s tray, to Pliny’s foul-smelling “polyp,” whose stupefyingly bad breath “tormented the dogs,” to the beached “devil-fish” described in 1879 by the biologist Thomas Kirk. Quoting from an awestruck New Zealander who happened on the carcass, Kirk conjured a “repulsive-looking brute” with tentacles “as thick as a man’s leg,” “horrid goggle eyes,” and “a powerful beak,” reputed by the Maori natives to grab men and rip their insides out. (Duly chastened, the New Zealander vowed, “No more sea-bathing for me!”)
The Kraken Wakes: What Architeuthis is Trying to Tell Us


  1. I watched it last night and the visuals were great, but the narration was…..sensationalist, though not quite on the order of that which inspired the fear of and hunting of sharks around the time the movie Jaws came out.  Also, dear god, the researcher with the beard was rather unfortunate.  He may have been playing it up for the camera, but it seems like he might have been staring into the dark depths for too long and part of him didn’t come back. 

    1. Unfortunately, that’s the way most nature/animal documentaries are presented these days. There hardly is anything anymore that isn’t super cute, super deadly or both.

  2. I tried to watch it, I really did. After the 4th or 5th fake static video transition (with accompanying sound), I gave up. Intentionally introducing such fake artifacts just annoys me.

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