What was the show about teens trying to stop an alien that lived inside a volcano from blowing up the Earth?
May 12, 2010 4:34 PM   Subscribe

Live action teen TV show, pretty sure it was Australian, about a group of youngsters trying to stop an alien that lived inside a volcano from ending life on Earth. I remember the alien being humanoid and vaguely similar to the Predator. I saw it on Icelandic television in the early to mid 90s. It was set in modern times. Does this ring a bell for anyone?
posted by Kattullus to Media & Arts (16 answers total)
This sounds like Dianetics.
posted by KokuRyu at 4:40 PM on May 12, 2010

Yah, that's part of why I'm asking, I'm wondering if there was any connection to Hubbardiana. That said, making volcanoes go boom isn't an idea that only Hubbard ever had.

But mostly I just want to know what TV show it was that I watched back in the day.
posted by Kattullus at 4:47 PM on May 12, 2010

This one's a long shot, but there's an NZ TV show from 1982 about aliens living in a volcano who are stopped by psychic kids: Under the Mountain.

It was remade as a movie last year; its synopsis summarises both TV series and film:
"When teenage twins Rachel and Theo investigate the creepy old house next door, they discover the Wilberforces - shape-shifting creatures that lurk beneath Auckland's ring of extinct volcanoes.

Guided by the mysterious Mr Jones and with the help of their older cousin Ricky, the twins must rekindle the unique powers they once shared if they are to destroy this ancient evil - before it destroys them."
posted by Paragon at 4:58 PM on May 12, 2010

I agree. You're thinking of Under the Mountain. Maurice Gee wrote the book in 1979. It was made into a TV series set in New Zealand, in 1981 and was about eight parts long. It was recycled into Nickelodeon's The Third Eye series, along with Into the Labyrinth, The Haunting of Cassie Palmer, and others.

I have not seen the Sam Neill film of 2009.

But the aliens were two parters ... one kind that looked like human, or could at least hold the shape, until they became human-but-slimy, then had distorted features, and were finally seven-foot-tall piles of living goo with a glowy top where the brain might have been.

They move around via a series of tubes, good if you come with your own slime. A big one goes .... under the mountain. That's where the slumbering second aliens lived, and they were enormous creatures the size of hills.
posted by adipocere at 5:05 PM on May 12, 2010

Yeah, I'm voting for Under the Mountain too. If you google, don't confuse the recent movie with the TV series. That series was widely celebrated as an NZ export success at the time because it was supposedly widely syndicated abroad.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 5:12 PM on May 12, 2010

That sounds plausible. I have managed to find out that Under the Mountain was being picked up by various European TV stations as late as 1995. The most vivid image I have is of the alien inside the volcano, so until I find a scene of the alien, I can't be sure. As I said, I remember the alien being humanoid, a bit reminiscent of the Predator alien. There's a lot of Under the Mountain material on the internet, so I'll keep trawling through it.
posted by Kattullus at 5:14 PM on May 12, 2010

Actually, none of what I've watched so far rings a bell at all.
posted by Kattullus at 5:19 PM on May 12, 2010

There's all kinds of ways I could be misremembering what I watched all these years ago. The TV show could've been set on Hawaii, the alien could've been living in the center of the Earth, etc.
posted by Kattullus at 5:53 PM on May 12, 2010

It sounds like it could have been the plot of an episode of Mission: Top Secret.
posted by jacalata at 5:59 PM on May 12, 2010

I initially thought of Under the Mountain as well. But actually, the action in that series takes place beneath dormant volcanoes - there's lots of mud and running around underground, but no lava, and definitely no predator-ish aliens. When the aliens aren't taking the form of human beings, they look like slugs or giant larvae.

Could it have been The Boy from Andromeda? It was an early '90s program, also produced in New Zealand. The plot involved human kids, a mysterious blue boy from outer space, and a big alien/monster living under the Tarawera volcano. This forum has some screenshots. The monster looks a bit like the Predator.

Incidentally, I don't think either series had anything to do with Hubbard. NZ's biggest city, Auckland, is built on/surrounded by dormant volcanoes, so the fantasy that there might be something bad living under them is naturally scary/exciting to NZ kids.
posted by embrangled at 6:03 PM on May 12, 2010

If it was Australian, this list of Australian TV shows might prompt you. I don't think Mission Top Secret had any actual aliens, it was human baddies.

I'm glad everyone suggested Under the Mountain though, I read that years ago and had forgotten it
posted by jacalata at 6:05 PM on May 12, 2010

The Boy from Andromeda it is! Thanks, embrangled! There sure isn't much information about the show online.
posted by Kattullus at 6:12 PM on May 12, 2010

Was it Ocean Girl? I'm pretty sure there was an underwater pyramid that ended up being a gateway to another world. Check out if that sounds familiar though it is a bit later than you remember.
posted by Wantok at 6:14 PM on May 12, 2010

Damn, here is the link
posted by Wantok at 6:15 PM on May 12, 2010

Or not.
posted by Wantok at 6:15 PM on May 12, 2010

Sorry, here's the forum I meant to link to. I'm not sure what language it's in, but it has a lot of screenshots.

I watched a few episodes of the series as a kid. Maybe I was an unusually early cynic, but I remember being *really* aware of just how bad the production values were. The "boy" was a woman in a blue leotard, adorned with bathroom plumbing. His long fingernails were made from kitchen foil. The monster was apparently built in five days, and the "fire key" seemed to be purple papier mache.

If the story had been stronger, it might have become the kind of nerdy cult series that people watch ironically. But even as a child, I thought the plot dragged on and the dialogue seemed really clunky. So yeah, it doesn't surprise me that it's slipped into obscurity and not many people are writing about it online.

Glad I could help you identify it, though!
posted by embrangled at 8:59 PM on May 12, 2010

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