12 June 2023


Sean Casteel and Tim R. Swartz (eds.), Mimics: The Others Among Us, Zontar Press, 2023.

Right from the early days of ufology the Contactees told us that the aliens they encountered from Venus, Mars or the Moon looked humanoid and could live amongst us. They did not even need to wear a spacesuit or protective clothing. Since then we know that ‘they’ could not have been physically real aliens and certainly not inhabitants of our closest celestial neighbours. 
In later years aliens have been regarded as spirit beings, astral travellers, time travellers, holograms and androids. Many myths and legends from the past have been added to this mix of manifestations of the damned. They have been described as MIB, vampires, angels, demons, ghosts, fairies and shapeshifters who can take on human form.

The contributors to this volume explore all the varieties of ‘Them’ who come to mimic our human form and play havoc with our senses. With the Internet era such creatures of the Id have re-emerged as black-eyed boys, the Slender Man and stories of alien underground and undersea bases.

Chris Holly in her chapter ‘The Strangest Strangers’ tells of a 'Professor Star' who turned up in an Internet chat room devoted to the subject of UFOs and space many years ago. He seemed to be very well educated but he only spoke to a small group of people. He was described as a big man with broad shoulders, no neck, small ears and was very white. He calimed interstellar travel was possible through wormholes and announced he was the last hybrid Star Child, created to see how hybrids dealt with space travel.

Holly herself encountered ‘Siriusbound' on a another chat room who acted much like Professor Star. He is described as being thin and lanky, very white and completely hairless. When he spoke on camera his head seemed to slide down his neck making him look like a snake. It crossed her mind that he was some form of hologram or he could control the viewers’ minds, or perhaps his web camera and Internet connection was not very good! Both strangers disappeared, making Holly wonder how many ‘strange strangers’ lurk amidst us in our everyday lives.

We also read the story of a strange couple wearing dark glasses whilst speed reading Whitley Strieber's book Communion in a Manhattan bookstore. This highlights the fact that these humanoids always seem to wear bizarre clothing, have strange physical attributes and/or act in very odd manner, making them standout from the crowd rather than blend in with it!

Other intruders are far more brazen and enjoy telling people they are of an alien origin. In my chapter ‘Aliens Amongst Us’ I mention the case of Gary who at a UFO meeting in 1975 announced to Jenny Randles and Peter Warrington that "I have come as a representative of the aliens."
Gary was a tall and bearded man, who exuded a powerful aura of authority, which almost hypnotically inclined them to believe his wild claims. This included his assertion that all the rejects are sent to Earth in order for them to sort out their eternal lives. However, they were not impressed by the evidence he offered to back up his claims. When I emailed him in recent years he said: "I am not alone in what I have said, and although I was the one to 'come out of the closet' first as you might say . . . there are thousands still in there. They chose to come here to help humanity . . ."

An alien figure that I was not aware of previously is described by Philip Kinsella in his chapter ‘The Curious Case of David Daniels, The Reptilian Man.’ On 23 November 1984, shortly after the publication of Sky Crash about the Rendlesham Forest case, two of its authors, Brenda Butler and Dot Street came into contact with Daniels. He was tall, slim, had very blue eyes and wore a long leather coat. Not only did he look and act strange but he announced he was from the Pleiades star system 440 light-years away. Like Gary he seemed to display psychic powers but he did make some people feel frightened of him. Butler bonded with him and on one occasion says she saw him briefly transmute into a reptilian form. 

Daniels met Ralph Noyes and Admiral Lord Hill-Norton in this period who were impressed by his knowledge and psychic abilities. In 1985, Butler received a phone call from a detective inspector at Scotland Yard, who said he was working alongside MI5 to track down Daniels as he was implicated in murdering a man in London. It’s a wild story, well told by Kinsella, but was he just another fantasy prone individual who loves to taunt ufologists with their stories? Would a police detective actually mention he was working with MI5!

These ‘mimics’ could be all manner of entities and tricksters who have haunted humanity for centuries, and this book certainly reinforces that viewpoint in buckets. Yet, it is more likely they are the product of human fantasy, delusion, hoaxes, rumours and stories that have got stranger with repeated telling. Mimics' is a captivating read that mines our deepest unconscious fears and nightmares, as for considering whether any of this is real - that would spoil the fun.
  • Nigel Watson

1 comment:

Count Otto Black said...

Zontar Press is presumably named after the notoriously terrible 1967 movie "Zontar, The Thing From Venus", a much cheaper, greatly inferior, and completely unauthorised remake of Roger Corman's 1956 film "It Conquered The World". Which was not itself famous for its high production values, but at least it gave us the interesting spectacle of an evil extraterrestrial traffic cone with teeth having its eye burned out with a blow-torch by Lee Van Cleef. Now there's something you don't see every day!

Anyway, it would appear that this book's publishers chose to name themselves after a pile of worthless old space-related shite that appeals only to the kind of smug hipsters who like to watch laughably dated bottom-of-the-barrel pop culture bollocks ironically. What does that say about their attitude to their target demographic?

PS - I've just googled Zontar Press, and apparently they don't even have a website! However, the chap who appears to run it has this to say: "Zontar Press is our continuation of the late Timothy Green Beckley's Global Communications. Our goal is to publish non-fiction books of extraordinary topics such as UFOs, ghosts and hauntings, cryptid creatures and other paranormal related subjects." Which I think tells anyone with a higher IQ than live yoghurt all they need to know.