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IN THIS EPISODE: (Dark Archives episode previously released July 31, 2018) *** A man is forewarned about a traffic accident that probably would have killed him. Was it a guardian angel, or is there another explanation? (The Phantom’s Fatal Forewarning) *** While the search for extraterrestrial life here in this universe is complicated enough, the problem becomes even murkier when you account for the multiverse theory. Could an alternate universe or dimension still be habitable by humans? (Is It Possible To Live In A Parallel Universe?) *** It has been proven that the Nazis were horrible war criminals and not only did some cruel and inhuman things to their prisoners, but even dove into the supernatural and paranormal in the hopes of turning the tide of the war in their favor. But I’m guessing you’ve not hear about how the Nazis used Bigfoot to further their plans, have you? (Nazi Gold and Bigfoot Costumes) *** Sometimes a horror film will haunt you in your dreams… but for one woman, those hauntings became more real than the movie itself. (It Was Just a Movie) *** During World War I, hundreds of young women went to work in clock factories, painting watch dials with luminous radium paint. But after the girls — who literally glowed in the dark after their shifts — began to experience gruesome side effects, they began a race-against-time fight for justice that would forever change US labor laws. (The Radium Ghost Girls)
STORY AND MUSIC CREDITS/SOURCES…
“Nazi Gold and Bigfoot Costumes” by Nick Redfern: http://bit.ly/33rXyXZ
“Is It Possible To Live In a Parallel Universe?” by Sequoya Kennedy: http://bit.ly/2OOUOP6
“It Was Just a Movie” submitted to WeirdDarkness.com by Kaitlynne G: http://bit.ly/2OrN4Dx
“The Radium Ghost Girls” by Kate Moore: https://bzfd.it/37NLxQ2
“The Phantom’s Fatal Forewarning” submitted by Mark Ferris: http://bit.ly/2DoLaNI
Background music provided by EpidemicSound and AudioBlocks with paid license. Music by Shadows Symphony (http://bit.ly/2W6N1xJ) and Midnight Syndicate (http://amzn.to/2BYCoXZ) is also sometimes used with permission.
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“I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.” — John 12:46 *** How to escape eternal darkness: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2IYmodFKDaM
On April 10, 1917, an 18-year-old woman named Grace Fryer started work as a dial painter at the United States Radium Corporation (USRC) in Orange, New Jersey. It was four days after the US had joined World War I; with two soldier brothers, Grace wanted to do all she could to help the war effort. She had no idea that her new job would change her life — and workers’ rights — forever.
With war declared, hundreds of working-class women flocked to the studio where they were employed to paint watches and military dials with the new element radium, which had been discovered by Marie Curie a little less than 20 years before. Dial painting was “the elite job for the poor working girls”; it paid more than three times the average factory job, and those lucky enough to land a position ranked in the top 5% of female workers nationally, giving the women financial freedom in a time of burgeoning female empowerment. Many of them were teenagers, with small hands perfect for the artistic work, and they spread the message of their new job’s appeal through their friend and family networks; often, whole sets of siblings worked alongside each other in the studio.
Radium’s luminosity was part of its allure, and the dial painters soon became known as the “ghost girls” — because by the time they finished their shifts, they themselves would glow in the dark. They made the most of the perk, wearing their good dresses to the plant so they’d shine in the dance halls at night, and even painting radium onto their teeth for a smile that would knock their suitors dead.
Grace and her colleagues obediently followed the technique they’d been taught for the painstaking handiwork of painting the tiny dials, some of which were only 3.5 centimeters wide. The girls were instructed to slip their paintbrushes between their lips to make a fine point — a practice called lip-pointing, or a “lip, dip, paint routine,” as playwright Melanie Marnich later described it. Every time the girls raised the brushes to their mouths, they swallowed a little of the glowing green paint.
“The first thing we asked [was] ‘Does this stuff hurt you?’” Mae Cubberley, who instructed Grace in the technique, later remembered. “Naturally you don’t want to put anything in your mouth that is going to hurt you. Mr. Savoy [the manager] said that it wasn’t dangerous, that we didn’t need to be afraid.”
But that wasn’t true. Ever since the glowing element had been discovered, it had been known to cause harm; Marie Curie herself had suffered radiation burns from handling it. People had died of radium poisoning before the first dial painter ever picked up her brush. That was why the men at the radium companies wore lead aprons in their laboratories and handled the radium with ivory-tipped tongs. Yet the dial painters were not afforded such protection, or even warned it might be necessary.
That was because, at that time, a small amount of radium — such as the girls were handling — was believed to be beneficial to health: People drank radium water as a tonic, and one could buy cosmetics, butter, milk, and toothpaste laced with the wonder element. Newspapers reported its use would “add years to our lives!”
But that belief was founded upon research conducted by the very same radium firms who had built their lucrative industry around it. They ignored all the danger signs; when asked, managers told the girls the substance would put roses in their cheeks.
In 1922, one of Grace’s colleagues, Mollie Maggia, had to quit the studio because she was sick. She didn’t know what was wrong with her. Her trouble had started with an aching tooth: Her dentist pulled it, but then the next tooth started hurting and also had to be extracted. In the place of the missing teeth, agonizing ulcers sprouted as dark flowers, blooming red and yellow with blood and pus. They seeped constantly and made her breath foul. Then she suffered aching pains in her limbs that were so agonizing they eventually left her unable to walk. The doctor thought it was rheumatism; he sent her home with aspirin.
By May 1922, Mollie was desperate. At that point, she had lost most of her teeth and the mysterious infection had spread: Her entire lower jaw, the roof of her mouth, and even some of the bones of her ears were said to be “one large abscess.” But worse was to come. When her dentist prodded delicately at her jawbone in her mouth, to his horror and shock, it broke against his fingers. He removed it, “not by an operation, but merely by putting his fingers in her mouth and lifting it out.” Only days later, her entire lower jaw was removed in the same way.
Mollie was literally falling apart. And she wasn’t the only one; by now, Grace Fryer, too, was having trouble with her jaw and suffering pains in her feet, and so were the other radium girls.
On September 12, 1922, the strange infection that had plagued Mollie Maggia for less than a year spread to the tissues of her throat. The disease slowly ate its way through her jugular vein. At 5 p.m. that day, her mouth was flooded with blood as she hemorrhaged so fast that her nurse could not staunch it. She died at the age of 24. With her doctors flummoxed as to the cause of death, her death certificate, erroneously, said she’d died of syphilis, something her former company would later use against her.
As if by clockwork, one by one, Mollie’s former colleagues soon followed her to the grave.
The young women’s employer, USRC, denied any responsibility for the deaths for almost two years. After suffering a downturn in business because of what they saw as “gossip” that wouldn’t go away, in 1924 they finally commissioned an expert to look into the rumored link between the dial-painting profession and the women’s deaths.
Unlike the company’s own research into radium’s beneficence, this study was independent, and when the expert confirmed the link between the radium and the women’s illnesses, the president of the firm was outraged. Instead of accepting the findings, he paid for new studies that published the opposite conclusion; he also lied to the Department of Labor, which had begun investigating, about the verdict of the original report. Publicly, he denounced the women as trying to “palm off” their illnesses on the firm and decried their attempts to get some financial help for their mounting medical bills.
With the report hushed up, the women’s biggest challenge was proving the link between their mysterious illnesses and the radium that they’d been ingesting hundreds of times a day. Though they themselves discussed the fact that their work must be to blame, they were fighting against the widespread belief that radium was safe. In fact, it was only when the first male employee of the radium firm died that experts finally took up the charge. In 1925, a brilliant doctor named Harrison Martland devised tests that proved once and for all that radium had poisoned the women.
Martland also explained what was happening inside their bodies. As early as 1901, it had been evident that radium could harm humans dramatically when applied externally; Pierre Curie once remarked that he would not want to be in room with a kilo of pure radium because he believed it would burn all the skin off his body, destroy his eyesight, and “probably kill [him].” Martland discovered that when radium was used internally, even in tiny amounts, the damage was many thousands of times greater.
That ingested radium had subsequently settled in the women’s bodies and was now emitting constant, destructive radiation that “honeycombed” their bones. It was literally boring holes inside them while they were alive. It attacked the women all over their bodies: Grace Fryer’s spine was “crushed” and she had to wear a steel back brace; another girl’s jaw was eaten away to “a mere stump.” The women’s legs shortened and spontaneously fractured, too.
Eerily, those damaged bones also began to glow from the radium embedded deep within them: the light that does not lie. Sometimes, the moment a woman realized she had radium poisoning was when she caught sight of herself in a mirror in the middle of the night — for a ghost girl was reflected there, shining with an unnatural luminosity that sealed her fate.
For Martland had also realized that the poisoning was fatal. And now that it was inside of them, there was no way of removing the radium from the girls’ beleaguered bones.
Despite the radium industry’s attempts to discredit Martland’s pioneering work, it hadn’t reckoned with the courage and tenacity of the radium girls themselves. They started banding together to fight against the injustice. And there was an altruistic motive to their battle — after all, dial painters were still being employed all across the United States. “It is not for myself I care,” Grace Fryer commented. “I am thinking more of the hundreds of girls to whom this may serve as an example.”
It was Grace who led their fight, determined to find a lawyer even after countless attorneys turned her down, either disbelieving the women’s claims, running scared from the powerful radium corporations, or being unprepared to fight a legal battle that demanded the overturn of existing legislation. At that time, radium poisoning was not a compensable disease — it hadn’t even been discovered until the girls got sick — and the women were also stymied by the statute of limitations, which ruled that victims of occupational poisoning had to bring their legal cases within two years. Radium poisoning was insidious, so most girls did not start to sicken until at least five years after they started work; they were trapped in a vicious legal circle that could seemingly not be squared. But Grace was the daughter of a union delegate, and she was determined to hold a clearly guilty firm to account.
Eventually, in 1927, a smart young lawyer named Raymond Berry accepted their case, and Grace (along with four colleagues) found herself at the center of an internationally famous courtroom drama. By now, however, time was running out: The women had been given just four months to live, and the company seemed intent on dragging out the legal proceedings. As a consequence, Grace and her friends were forced to settle out of court — but they had raised the profile of radium poisoning, just as Grace had planned.
The New Jersey radium girls’ case was front-page news, and it sent shockwaves across America. In Ottawa, Illinois, a dial painter by the name of Catherine Wolfe read the coverage with horror. “There were meetings at [our] plant that bordered on riots,” she remembered. “The chill of fear was so depressing that we could scarcely work.”
Yet the Illinois firm, Radium Dial, took a leaf out of USRC’s book and denied responsibility. Although the firm’s medical tests proved that the Illinois women were showing clear symptoms of radium poisoning, it lied about the results. It even placed a full-page ad in the local paper: “If we at any time had reason to believe that any conditions of the work endangered the health of our employees, we would at once have suspended operations.” Its actions to hush up the scandal went as far as interfering in the girls’ autopsies when the Illinois workers began to die: Company officials actually stole their radium-riddled bones in their callous cover-up.
If the women weren’t killed by the same jaw problems that had taken Mollie Maggia, they eventually suffered from sarcomas — huge cancerous bone tumors that could grow anywhere on their bodies. One dial painter, Irene La Porte, died from a massive pelvic tumor that was said to be “larger than two footballs.”
In 1938, Catherine Wolfe (Donohue after her marriage) developed a grapefruit-sized tumor that bulged on her hip. Like Mollie Maggia before her, she lost her teeth and had to pick pieces of her jawbone out of her mouth; she constantly held a patterned handkerchief to her jaw to absorb the ever-seeping pus. She had also seen her friends dying before her, and that rather steeled her spirit.
When Catherine started her fight for justice, it was the mid-1930s: America was in the grip of the Great Depression. Catherine and her friends were shunned by their community for suing one of the few firms left standing. Though close to death when her case went to court in 1938, Catherine ignored her doctors’ advice and instead gave evidence from her deathbed. In doing so, and with the help of her lawyer, Leonard Grossman (who worked pro bono), she finally won justice not only for herself, but for workers everywhere.
The radium girls’ case was one of the first in which an employer was made responsible for the health of the company’s employees. It led to life-saving regulations and, ultimately, to the establishment of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which now operates nationally in the United States to protect workers. Before OSHA was set up, 14,000 people died on the job every year; today, it is just over 4,500. The women also left a legacy to science that has been termed “invaluable.”
But you won’t often read their names in the history books, for today the individual radium girls have largely been forgotten. Drawing on the women’s own words from their diaries, letters, and court testimonies, my new book, The Radium Girls, attempts to redress the balance — because it was through their strength, suffering, and sacrifice that workers’ rights were won. We all benefit from their courage.
Grace Fryer and Catherine Donohue — to name just two — are women we need to honor and salute as fearless champions. They shine through history with all that they achieved in their too-short lives. And they shine in other ways, too. For radium has a half-life of 1,600 years…and it is still embedded in their bones. The ghost girls will be glowing in their graves for a good while yet.
While the search for extraterrestrial life here in this universe is complicated enough, the problem becomes even murkier when you account for the multiverse theory—our universe might one of many “universes” that make up a collective multiverse. Theoretical physicists have long assumed that the vast majority of parallel universes would be unable to harbor alien life, but that assumption is being challenged. A research team of scientists from Durham University, Western Sydney University, and the University of Western Australia have now found evidence that upends previously held notions of why the universe formed as it did, and suggests that the conditions to create a habitable universe are much more likely that previously imagined.
Just as Earth is an assumed rarity in our universe—a Goldilocks planet, not too hot, not too cold, and full of liquid water—our universe as a whole was previously considered to be an extreme rarity among potential alternate universes. Why? Dark energy, the strange and baffling invisible force that is driving our universe’s expansion. Jaime Salcido, postgraduate student at Durham University told Newsweek: *****“The multiverse theory suggests that our universe is only one of many, baby universes being born like bubbles in a bigger multiverse, with a wide range of physical laws and fundamental constants. The existence of life seems to depend on a small number of fine-tuned fundamental physical constants, such as the strength of gravity and the amount of dark energy. The formation of stars and galaxies is the result of a tug-of-war between these values: gravity causing matter to clump together, the dark energy causing the universe to fly apart.”*****
Scientists thought that if there were any less or any more dark energy in a parallel universe than what we find in our own—dark energy makes up about 70 percent of our observable universe—the alternate universe wouldn’t have the physical laws that allow galaxies, stars, and planets to form in the first place.
To test this, the Australian research team studied computer models of the formation of the universe (because we can do that now…) using EAGLE (Evolution and Assembly of GaLaxies and their Environments), the most advanced computer simulation of how our universe was formed. They found something surprising.
It seems that celestial bodies like stars and galaxies form even when they amount of dark energy is no where near the amount predicted to be necessary. In one case, the researchers added one hundred times the amount of dark energy to the system, and a functioning, potentially habitable universe still formed. Salcido says: *****“Our research shows that even if there was much more dark energy, or even very little, in the universe, then it would only have a minimal effect on star and planet formation, raising the prospect that life could exist throughout the multiverse.”*****
Inter-dimensional aliens are objectively more awesome than regular aliens, so that’s pretty cool.
The findings do cause a bit of a problem though. The multiverse theory was created as a way to explain the amount of dark matter, and the relationship it has with the fundamental formation of the universe. It doesn’t work anymore. While the researchers say this doesn’t disprove a multiverse, it does mean that our understanding of dark energy was rather flawed: ***“It seems that we need a new physical law to understand dark energy. The puzzle remains.”*****
It wouldn’t be fun if it was easy, right?
This happened to me while I was coming home from school. I used to walk down the side of a busy main road. Most of the time it was absolutely filled with traffic and I would be very careful to stay as far away from the road as I possibly could. There had been several people run over on that road, but it was essential for me to take that route to get home as quickly as possible. I walked that road four times a day. The only strange thing that happened was the time I was walking home from school when I heard someone yell, “move! Now! Get into that driveway!”
I belted into that driveway and nothing happened. I waited a few seconds and then a car came along, hit the pavement and smashed into the wall where I had been standing. No “maybe” about it. I would have been killed instantly. The driver was drunk and out of control.
When I got home that day I started wondering about that helpful voice. I couldn’t tell if it had been a man, or a woman. I can’t tell you whether it was in my head or I heard it through my ears. Maybe it was more of a feeling, but it came across as words. I just reacted and ran into the driveway next door to the wall. So, I may owe my life to an unseen entity or angel. If so, I’d like to thank them for saving me that day.
JUST A MOVIE
I’ve had a lot of weird, unexplainable things happen to me when I was younger. Some of them I’ve tried to share with my mom, who would brush me off despite her being a believer in the paranormal. Some of them I haven’t shared with anyone. I think she thought like any other kid I was making up stories, and I definitely did. I don’t deny that. I have a huge and sometimes overactive imagination. I think the thing that she never realized is I always stayed away from anything that may have been scary. I was and still kind of am a scaredy cat.
I’m sure I’ll come to share more of my weird happenings, but this one is by far I think the one that stands out to me the most.
So I said I was a scaredy cat, and that’s very true. My parents, however, are not and have always enjoyed watching horror movies. We moved around a lot, and no matter how the house was set up I would always find a way to sneak out of bed and hide near them while they watched their scary movies. I had no interest in watching, and usually it was because I had a bad dream and just wanted to be close to them that I would find myself out there. They were young adults, and like most young people they didn’t want to be in bed by 10 pm. They would stay up late watching movies and talking. So it was an often occurrence that I would crawl or tip toe out of my room and hide on the stairs or behind a couch. I would inevitably end up watching parts of the movie from sheer curiosity, and at other times squeeze my eyes shut and listen while my imagination unfortunately put pictures in my head.
One movie that truly scared my poor 5 year old self was the remake of the Shining, or more to the point the bathroom scene. The dead women in the movie made me scream, and my parents found me. They pulled me on the couch and tried to calm me. It was just a movie, it was only make up, it’s just a made up story sweetheart.
It was just a movie.
Well, the “woman” from that scene would become the haunt of my nightmares, and I swear actually haunt me.
I don’t remember any more what the nightmares were about, but it very quickly became more than that. In the bathroom mirror I would see her form reach out. Not in the reflection of someone with their hand out way, but in the pushing at it and out way. Like the mirror was substance that would, in the shape of her, reach out. Like a bad scene in a 3D movie. It’s very hard to put into words how it looked. The same would happen from my closet door, but in this case she would be the texture of the wood. It was as though what she was reaching from was also a barrier she was trying to break. I became petrified at the thought of getting out of bed at night. I thought if I did, she would be able to actually grab me. It didn’t matter what apartment we lived in, as we had moved many times since the night I first saw her, and it didn’t matter who’s bathroom it was, I would see her. I started to hear a voice whispering my name and the feeling that I was being watched. It sat in the pit of my stomach, this fear. I would rather have an accident and deal with the shame of that then encounter her.
As time passed for me, it seemed to have passed for her. She became very rotted and decayed.
I know this sounds a lot like a child with an overactive imagination, but it wasn’t that she was in my closet or in the mirror. It was that she would reach to me from the thing itself, pushing out from it as though it was a portal or something. She wasn’t some boogey man sitting in the shadows. I don’t care if no one believes me here, this is an experience I’ve never and will never forget.
This was a nightly occurrence for me. The whispers, the feeling of being watched, and if I dared to peek to my closet door the dead woman reaching to me from the door.
I remember tying all the normal kid things. I slept with a ton of stuffed animals, which lined me in an attempt protect me. I would sleep with the blankets over my head, because if she can’t see me she couldn’t possible harm me, right? I started to pray before bed, because Gram said Jesus would protect me.
I did all these things, and every night I still had the whispers, the feeling of being watched, and the woman reaching to me.
Sometimes I would try to hide from her, I would sleep in the living room. There was a large mirror in the room and she would reach for me from that. I would sleep in my baby brothers room, and she would reach for me through his closet. If I slept at Gram’s house, I would see her there as well.
I remember at one point feeling like she was being more insistent. Like she was getting annoyed with me for not coming to her. She was getting angry with me. A feeling of dread began to set in. Nothing I had done was helping and when I told my parents I was dismissed.
As cryptic as it sounds I had a night where as I laid down I knew it would be my last. This feeling washed over me as I got ready for bed. She was going to get me tonight and there was nothing anyone could or would do for me. I was going to die. I knew what death was despite being rather young, I saw it in movies and I had been to a few funerals. At the time my Aunt Bev had passed away maybe a few months before. I understood what it meant at 10 years old.
So I lay in bed, covered in my blanket, surrounded by my stuffed animals. This night I lay on my side, face towards the wall. I didn’t want to see it when she came for me. I was scared enough as it was.
The whispers started, and the feeling of being watched set in. This time I could practically feel it as she moved from the closet, no longer just reaching. I couldn’t hear the footsteps, but I could feel it. All of it. Each slow step. I could feel that she was moving towards me. Feel it as she leaned in towards me. Feel the hand reach down towards me. Feel it as it almost touched me. Feel the end coming. Then it was gone.
I lay there trembling and confused.
I couldn’t feel her.
I couldn’t hear her.
Should I look?
Was she toying with me?
Then I felt something else.
A soft, gentle impression at the end of my bed. It felt like someone had sat down. A calming voice told me not to fear anymore and that I would be safe.
I laid there in silence. I realized I didn’t feel afraid anymore and that I no longer felt like I was being watched. Was that moms voice? She wasn’t home from work yet, this was her night shift night. It couldn’t be her. Who else was in the house? Dad, my little brother, my newborn sister. I had to see who was sitting there. I sat up and no one was there.
I scrambled out of bed and ran down the stairs to find my dad on the couch. He looked up startled, seeing tears down my face. He comforted me and let me fall asleep next to him on the couch.
I never dreamed of her again and have not seen her reaching for me.
I have re-watched the movie as an adult. I realize now the woman I would see was not her, not exactly. I believe what would visit me in the night was something else, taking the face of my fear, worsening it. Some thing or being wanted me, and someone saved me. I have no proof of it, but I think that it may have been my Aunt who had passed not that long before. I think she chased away whatever that thing was and that she watches over me.
I have always been sensitive to these things, and as I said in the beginning I have had many weird, unexplainable things happen to me. I try to avoid places that may have things in them still. I am terrified of the idea of something else latching on to me.
I’d like to end tonight’ show with something a bit more lighthearted, and while it’s a short jog from our normal dark path, it still remains on the weird spectrum, and I hope you’ll enjoy hearing it as much as did.
In 2016 the author of The Bigfoot Book, wrote: “Depending on one’s personal perspective, it’s either the best evidence that Bigfoot exists or it’s one of the world’s most enduring, outrageous hoaxes. It’s a fascinating and controversy-filled piece of film-footage, shot by a man named Roger Patterson, at Bluff Creek, California, in October 1967. It’s also a piece of film upon which the Bigfoot research community cannot agree, since the entire matter is steeped in debate, claims, and counter-claims. Of only a couple of things can we be one hundred percent certain: the film exists and it shows a large, humanoid figure in a forested setting.”
Indeed, the Patterson film is an integral part of not just Bigfoot research, but of the larger field of Cryptozoology too. Just a few days ago I was speaking with a friend who sits firmly on the fence when it comes to the matter of the real-versus-hoax issue concerning the 1967 footage. This then got into a bigger, and much wider, debate on other cases that may have involved not a Bigfoot but a “man in an ape suit.” Personally, I think the Patterson film is probably the real deal. Well, most of the time I do. But, there are a few cases which clearly demonstrate that the ape-suit/gorilla-suit angle is an integral part of Bigfoot research, like it or like it or not. You only have to check out some of the beyond dubious footage that can be found at YouTube to see that.
It’s a little-known fact, however, that the issue of people masquerading as apes is nothing new at all. Indeed, seventeen years before Roger Patterson filmed something out at Bluff Creek, the world of Hollywood was already making good use of this odd scenario of man-becoming-animal via a suit. All of which brings us to the matter of today’s article: a now largely obscure movie titled Mark of the Gorilla. It was one of sixteen movies produced by Columbia Pictures between 1948 and 1956 and which chronicled the Africa-based adventures of Jungle Jim. He was somewhat of an Indiana Jones-type character who was played by Olympic swimmer, Johnny Weissmuller. A 26-episodes-long series followed on TV, from 1955 to 1956, also starring Weissmuller. Prior to starring in the Jungle Jim movies, Weissmuller was made famous by playing Tarzan – in twelve movies, from 1932 to 1948.
The Jungle Jim movies were, and still are, entertaining pieces of hokum for young kids (and for kids at heart). Jim and his buddies – Skipper the dog and Caw-Caw the crow – spent their time solving various mysteries and bringing to an end certain dastardly goings-on in the jungle. And, of course, they always captures the villain(s). Not quite Scooby, Shaggy, Velma, Daphne and Fred, but you get the picture. In 1950, Columbia Pictures released Mark of the Gorilla – which is without doubt the weirdest and most mind-bending of all the Jungle Jim movies.
In the movie, Jim, Skipper and Caw-Caw investigate reports of attacks carried out by gorillas in one particular part of Africa not known for having a gorilla population. On top of that, the gorillas have reportedly killed people, too. This is puzzling to one and all, since gorillas – despite their size – are peaceful creatures. It soon becomes apparent that the gorillas are really nothing of the sort. They are actually (wait for it…) German agents on the trail of a huge horde of gold that the Nazis stole from the people of Shalikari.
That’s right: to protect their quest to find the gold, the Germans dress in entertainingly ludicrous gorilla outfits and masks, as a means to try and ensure that no-one realizes what they are really up to. Namely, searching for the priceless treasure. Of course, Jim and his animal friends save the day, and the gold is returned to one Princess Nyobi. And the German would-be-gorillas would have gotten away with it, if it hadn’t been for those meddling kids (I mean, one meddling man, a meddling dog, and a meddling crow).