Episode 14 – Forbidden Planet

Author Amber Elby joins Charlie and guest co-host and Executive Producer Adam Gobeski  to watch Forbidden Planet (1956). We marvel at the production design (and a young Leslie Nielsen), discuss the film’s nods to The Tempest, and argue which one of us has the highest IQ. Okay, we didn’t do that last one, but honestly – who DOES that???


Amber Elby’s new novel Cauldron’s Bubble can be found on Amazon right now, in digital and paperback form. I’ve read it; it’s really quite wonderful and seems like a great way to introduce kids to Shakespeare. And hell, I’m 35 without any kids and I still got a kick out of it.

Amber talks a bit about Return to the Forbidden Planet which apparently is an Olivier Award winning play. On a related note, I just learned there is such a thing as an Olivier Award! Also, the part of Robby the Robot (Ariel) is played on roller skates, so it’s got that too.

I’m sure everyone was super excited because we talked about Black Mirror, but Adam points out that of course, Star Trek did it first (sort of).

Both Amber and Adam could not find any evidence that the Michael Crichton drew any inspiration from Forbidden Planet when he wrote Sphere, so the jury’s still out. We will make sure to give you updates on this in coming episodes!!!!

Adam and Amber had a fun email exchange arguing about whether The Tempest is actually a “well-regarded” Shakespeare play. I would call them nerds, but I run a movie podcast. The back-and-forth is lengthy and I won’t post it here, but when an author starts talking about those “f***ing Victorians”, you know you’ve hit a nerve!

Adam once refers to Robby’s “motive”. He actually means “alibi”. We regret the error!

In our ongoing conversations about discontinued media, Adam mentions CEDs. Here’s what those are. The more you know!

And here’s a link to BritBox, for those of you who want to watch the Doctor Who episodes Adam mentioned.

Movies We Reference:

Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in Peril (1972)

Hamlet (1948)

Sphere (1998)

The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

Solaris (1972)

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

Scotland, Pa. (2001)

Shakespeare in Love (1998)

George Lucas in Love (1999)