Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, November 10, 2018

MVNews this week:  Page A:3




Mountain View News Saturday, November 10, 2018 

WALKING SIERRA MADRE.. The Social Side By Deanne Davis

KATIE Tse..........This and That


First off I want to apologize 
for last week’s article! I’ve 
made a horrible habit of 
recycling old articles when I 
fail to finish something new 
any given week. If you read 
last week’s, it started with the 
statement that it’s Springtime! SO EMBARRASSING! 
I actually updated it with a little disclaimer at the 
beginning, but in my haste I must not have clicked 
“save.” Anyway, so sorry about that! 

 This week’s 
offering is a movie 
review about a very 
cheesy cinematic gem 
my dad discovered on 
the Internet among 
other forgotten relics 
from Hollywood. In 
this case, it wasn’t 
Hollywood, but 

 Akira Takarada 
and Masumi 
Okada star in this 
production. Joseph 
Cotten, Caesar Romero, and Richard Jaekel are the only 
recognizable American actors (at least, the only ones I 
knew outside of this movie). The plot in a nutshell is 
that an Perry Lawton (Jaekel) an American journalist 
and photographer, along with a Dr. Ken Tashiro, a 
Japanese oceanographer (Takarada), and a Dr. Jules 
Masson, a supposedly French geologist (Okada) meet 
with disaster shortly after they embark on a deep sea 
exploration in a tiny diving pod. They are rescued by 
Cotten, who introduces himself as Craig McKenzie, 
Captain of the Alpha, a futuristic submarine manned 
primarily by Kobo, a burly Japanese fellow (Kin 
Omae) and Dr. Barton, a scantily clad blonde (Linda 
Haynes), and some other crewmen.

 Masson took the worst of hit of three men when 
their pod was violently severed from the main ship by 
means of an underwater volcanic eruption. Barton 
recommends docking at Latitude Zero so that Okada 
can receive advanced medical treatment. Latitude 
Zero is a Utopian deep ocean piece of real estate 
protected by an expansive selectively permeable 
barrier, like a big bubble enclosing acre upon acre 
of fertile land. Its citizens do not ascribe to any one 
particular nation or political ideology (Ah, how 
refreshing!), and live together in peaceful harmony. 
They’re mostly made up of intellectuals and scientists 
on the cutting edge of technological progress. 

 Slowly, the three rescued men come to realize that 
many of Latitude Zero’s inhabitants are in fact quite 
older than they appear, and many of them were 
reported to have mysteriously vanished from the 
outside world. Tashiro and Masson embrace this 
newfound paradise, but Lawton is skeptical. With 
Craig’s permission, he pockets a small bag of diamonds 
to sell when the men return home. Latitude Zero’s 
population use diamonds as common potting soil!

 Masson eventually wakes up and there’s the 
suggestion that he and Barton have some romantic 
involvement. But 
who couldn’t fall for a 
knock out like Barton 
who goes around in 
a backless gold lame 
mini skirt? Only the 
most professional 
apparel for doctors 
aboard the Alpha. 

 Conflict comes in 
the form of Malic 
(Romero), an evil 
scientist and long time 
rival of McKenzie. 
His minion, female 
Captain Kuroiga (Hikaru Kuroki), commands the 
Black Shark, another super submarine that constantly 
goads McKenzie and the Alpha. Kuroiga is in love 
with Malic, who already has an evil partner in crime 
(Patricia Medina as “Lucretia,” in real life married to 
Joseph Cotten!), but he’s just using Kuroiga’s loyalty to 
further his own dastardly plans.

 The highlight of the whole film is when Malic 
surgically removes Kuroiga’s brain and implants it in a 
lion and attaches condor wings to the whole thing. He 
accomplishes this feat of medical ingenuity in about 
5 minutes, laughing wickedly all the way. Both the 
lion and condor are stuffed animals with absolutely 
no attempt at realism. Clearly this production didn’t 
budget anything for special effects.

 The good guys win and Lawton wakes up to find 
himself rescued by Captain Glenn McKenzie (Cotten 
again) and Lt. Hastings (Romero again). In disbelief 
he opens his film canister to discover blank tape. His 
pouch of diamonds, too, turns out to be nothing but 
tobacco. Was it all just a dream? But then a wire 
comes in, informing Lawton that cache of diamonds 
has been deposited in a New York safety deposit box 
in his name. Maybe it wasn’t a dream after all!

 Great stuff! Highly recommend you watch it for 
yourself. Just fast forward to the lion-condor bit at 
least, that’s the best part.

“New England Clam Chowder, made as it should 
be, is a dish to preach about, to chant praises 
and sing hymns and burn incense is as 
American as the Stars & Stripes, as patriotic as the 
National Anthem. It is Yankee Doodle in a kettle!” 
Joseph C. Lincoln

 “You can’t escape the taste of the food you had 
as a child. In times of stress, what do you dream 
about? Your mother’s clam chowder. It’s security, 
comfort. It brings you home.” Jacques Pepin

 Now that Halloween is behind us, we can start 
thinking about something other than whether 
we’ll have enough candy for the trick or treaters or 
if we should buy another bag of baby Milky Ways. 
It’s still pumpkin pancake season and my survey 
says that the best ones this year are to be found at 
MiMi’s Café. They are thin, very pumpkin-y and 
simply delicious, served with an apple topping you 
can have on the side if you want your pancakes 
unsullied... Just saying...

 Thanksgiving is coming and we might be 
wondering if we could possibly serve a new dish this 
year. Maybe, but all the old favorites have to make 
their appearance or there will be unhappiness, i.e., 
but where are the sweet potatoes? Ok, add, but 
don’t subtract.

 We’ve still got a couple of weeks before we 
have to start getting serious about Thanksgiving, 
ordering the festive bird from Taylor’s and so forth, 
and I’ve been thinking about clam chowder. I don’t 
think anybody in my family has ever turned to my 
clam chowder as their ‘go to’ comfort food when 
the chips are down and life has been yucky. I think 
cheese toasties would win that contest and I’ve put 
them in this column before, I think. Scrambled 
egg sandwiches would be high on my list. Couple 
of eggs scrambled, toasted bread with a little mayo 
and mustard. Easy, warm and very comforting. 
Pizza is big in the comfort food department as 
you can order it no matter where you are and 
someone will bring it in no time at all. Right now, 
though, clam chowder sounds good. My husband, 
the adorable John, now residing in heaven and 
welcoming old friend, Charlie Kissinger, was very 
fond of peanut butter sandwiches. That was his 
favorite snack, lunch, occasional dinner and it 
had to be Laura Scudder’s Nutty. My mother was 
also partial to peanut butter sandwiches, but with 
mayo and lettuce. To each his own, right? I like 
peanut butter and jam or apple butter.

 Back to clam chowder... I like the white (New 
England) kind as opposed to the red (Manhattan) 
kind. Actually, I like that kind, too. But today we’re 
talking New England. Anyway, I really do love it, 
especially when I can find a few clams in it and 
it’s not made totally of something resembling 
wallpaper paste. This version is not so thick you 
have to eat it with a fork, and I, personally, think 
it’s awesome. It’s easy to make, doesn’t take all day 
to do and you’ll like it. Trust me. 

8 slices bacon, chopped

. cup diced celery (the heart part with the leaves 
still on the stalk – more flavor)

1 cup thinly sliced green onions

*30 oz., more or less, chopped clams

1 cup regular strength chicken broth

3 medium size red potatoes (about a lb.) peeled 
and diced

2 cups half & half


Chopped Parsley

*(I buy Bumble Bee fancy whole baby clams, which 
shows a net weight of 10 oz. and a drained weight 
of 5 oz. – these cost $2-something apiece and 4 
cans gives me plenty of clams. There’s probably a 
better bargain but I haven’t looked for one.)

 Cook the bacon in a 5 to 6 quart pan over 
medium heat until crisp. Stir occasionally. Discard 
all but about 3 Tb. of the drippings then add the 
celery and green onions. Cook, stirring often, until 
onions are limp. Stir in the clams and their liquid, 
broth and potatoes. Bring to a boil over high heat, 
then cover, reduce heat, and simmer till potatoes 
are tender to bite, about 10 minutes. Stir in the half 
& half and season to taste with pepper. Heat till 
steaming but not boiling. This smells incredible, 
by the way. Garnish with parsley and serve with 
some garlic bread. Notice, flour was not involved 
in any way. Enjoy!

 My book page: Deanne Davis


 Kindle readers, give yourself the gift of the 
Emma Gainsworth Adventures:

 “Just Dessert: A Fall Fantasy” – “The Intergalactic 
Pumpkin Battle” – “The Lost Amulets”

 They’re on on my book page!

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