Monsters at Home: The 456

Turkey Twizzlers "now only the second worst poultry-based threat to children", new studies suggest

It’s nearly time for another episode in the new series of Torchwood! Unless you live in America, in which case you’ll have to wait until last week to see it. I’m enjoying Miracle Day, although by internet law I’m forced to point out that it’s not as good as 2009’s Children of Earth. That was a Torchwood series that managed to be exciting, upsetting, terrifying and passionate all in one go. And the monsters! They were horrible. Yes, yes, THE MONSTERS WERE US, I know. But that’s a trick that takes some pulling off when you’ve introduced a race as nasty as interstellar paedos the 456. Let’s take a look at their home life.

WHAT DO THEY EAT Due to their embarrassing gastric condition, which has them uncontrollably spewing up viscous acid at all the most awkward moments, the 456 have been put on a diet designed to “settle their stomachs” by their mums. This includes chicken noodle soup, dry Jacob’s crackers and flat 7-Up.

HOW DO THEY SOCIALISE It’s a struggle. The heavy atmosphere they breathe envelops them in a constant blue haze, they’ve got kidnapped children to drag along behind them, and I’ve mentioned the vomiting problem. But they get by. The combination of a toxic fug, kids who shouldn’t be there and people chucking up everywhere reminds me very much of pubs in Manchester before the smoking ban.

Fugging hell.

WHAT DO THEY DRINK Andrews Liver Salts.

WHAT DO THEY WATCH ON TELLY Despite their fearsome reputation, the 456 enjoy a bit of knockabout fun as much as anyone. They’re often to be found in front of You’ve Been Framed. “An injury to one is an injury to all!” they laugh as a cat falls off a slide.

WHAT DO THEY DO FOR FUN Well as we saw in Torchwood, the 456 turn children into hookahs. And please do point out the spelling there, if you’re reading this aloud to your loved ones. We learned that kids produce a chemical that acts as a recreational drug to our vomity friends. And the 456 can control their minds and make them do as they please. Oh it leads to some horrible thoughts, doesn’t it. But that’s why they’re monsters! And this column is about the lighter side of monsterdom. So I like to imagine the 456 staging productions of Bugsy Malone. “We could have been anything that we wanted to be!” sing the sad, dead-eyed children in their gasmasks, crying with fear. You see? The lighter side!

Did the earth move for you?

HOW DO THEY REPRODUCE I think the 456 probably have the most exciting sex life of any monster I’ve covered on this blog to date. Look at them! They travel in pillars of fire, they’re constantly high on drugs, they wave mysterious dripping appendages around in semi-darkened rooms, and three heads are better than one. “We have a request. We want a gift,” they boom seductively. They’d get it. You know they would.

I did not make the following video. But it made me laugh when I was “researching” this post:

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