Tag: slime mold

Could The Blob Be Real? Update

Could The Blob Be Real? Update

This update on the previous post entitled, “Could The Blob Be Real?” is precipitated by recent events carried by several major news sources. A summary of those reports along with an analysis as it relates to the question of “Could The Blob Be Real?” follows the reprint of the previous post in its entirety. Those of you who have memorized “Could The Blob Be Real?” post may skip to the update that follows if you do desire.

Original “Could The Blob Be Real?” Post:

Many of us wonder, “Could The Blob be real?” And then there are those who ask, “What’s the blob?” First, I’ll bring those in the dark about The Blob up to speed with those in the know.

Could The Blob be real

The Blob

A different type of monster science fiction/horror movie reached theaters in 1958 which went on to become a classic. The storyline told of a meteorite falling to Earth during the dark of night outside a small Pennsylvania town in the United States. A small gelatinous organism (looks like red Jell-O) emerges and attaches itself to the arm of a curious older gent poking at it with a stick. It consumes his arm and then his entire body. Growing in size with each victim, it ultimately threatens to eat (absorb) everyone in the community. Throw in delinquent teenagers, one of whom is newcomer actor Steve McQueen, adversarial police officers, a budding romance, a little boy, a puppy and a classic movie begins its 60-year life. The movie is entitled, The Blob.

could the blob be real

Given the popularity of The Blob, a sequel was inevitable. It came in 1972 with the title of Beware! The Blob. An oil worker, Chester, brings a frozen sample of the original blob from the Arctic. It escapes, eats a kitten, and then follows in the footsteps of its parent frozen blob to threaten at town’s inhabitants. Terrible movie with amateurish special effects. Barely watchable, even for Blob lovers, but necessary for the complete Blob experience.

Could The Blob be real

Then in 1988, a remake of the original utilizing a new generation of special effects capabilities reached cinemas. Edging more toward the horror camp, the newer, The Blob, used more graphic violence as did remakes of The Thing, and Invasion of the Body Snatchers. It was a well-done movie, worthy of Blob aficionado attention but unsuccessful at the box office.

Could The Blob be real

And finally, another remake of the original is planned. Some indications of a 2019 release, but since it’s not even at the preproduction stage, that seems unlikely. Rumors persist of Samuel L. Jackson and Halle Berry for lead roles and a movie poster appearing very similar to that of the original Alien. Whether or not it ultimately makes it to the big screen is questionable at this time.

The Song – Beware The Blob

The theme song for the 1958 movie was a catchy, fun piece co-written by Burt Bacharach who went on to win a multitude of Grammys and Oscars. “The Five Blobs” performed the song, a group comprised of a single singer, Bernie Nee, whose vocals overdubbed five times for the recording. The bouncy tune spent three weeks on Billboard chart, reaching into the Top 40 in popularity.

The lyrics:

Beware of the blob, it creeps
And leaps and glides and slides
Across the floor
Right through the door
And all around the wall
A splotch, a blotch
Be careful of the blob

Blob Trivia

  • The Blob was based on a true story—Philadelphia police officers saw a strange object fall from the sky in 1950. Upon investigation, they found a purple jelly-like mass approximately six feet in diameter that pulsated and glowed. The blob evaporated within 30 minutes.
  • Unknown actor at the time, Steve McQueen landed the lead role, deciding on payment of somewhere between $2500 and $3000 instead of a percentage of the profits. Big mistake because he needed cash. The Blob earned $1.5 million in the first month of release.
  • Produced by a religious film company—Valley Forge Films of Pennsylvania, known for hundreds of Christian movies, needed to become more profitable. Blob producer, Jack H. Harris convinced them to take a chance on his new monster movie.
  • The Blob represented Communism—Many assumed the Blob represented the creeping red menace of Communism. Producer Harris laughed it off. He only wanted to make a movie monster that wasn’t a guy dressed up in a suit.
  • Original title was “Molten Meteor”—“The Blob” was decided as a title after production began, so the script never refers to the monster by that name, instead usually calling “a mass.”
  • There is an annual Blobfest in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania—Location of the most notable sets in the movie, including high school, diner, garage, and theater, the town hosts a yearly Blobfest. Naturally during the event, The Blob plays at the same theater used in the movie. Patrons can participate in a reenactment theater “run out.” There’s also a Steve McQueen look-alike contest.
could the blob be real

Could The Blob Be Real?

Star Jelly—A mysterious white substance nicknamed “Star Jelly” has been found in many parts of the world since the 14th century including England, Scotland, Germany, Mexico and the United States. Usually a white gooey slime found on the ground, that some have claimed is associated with meteor showers. It evaporates quickly. Studies on the translucent jelly have been even attempted by the National Geographic Society with inconclusive results. They found no evidence of DNA in the substance. The following explanations have been speculated by others:

could the blob be real
  • Remains of frogs, toads, or worms.
  • Blue-green algae that swells after a rainfall.
  • Substance from stags during the rutting season.
  • Slime mold.
  • Remnants of atmospheric beasts. (I like this one)
  • Alien life contained in meteors.

Star Jelly just doesn’t fit the profile of a proper Blob creature. Star Jelly, although intriguing, is usually white, just lays there, and evaporates. The substance from 1950 that spawned the idea for The Blob is closer because the policemen stated it fell from the sky, it was living, it was red, and it was big. But it evaporated. It did nothing exciting like eat anyone.


Given the failure of Star Jelly to meet the criterion for the true Blob, the question remains, “Could the Blob be real?” The few who have dealt with this important topic, focus on single celled life like the amoeba as a model of possible life similar to the Blob. That model of life severely restricts the possibilities by size and characteristic of the movie Blob.

The Truth: The Blob could exist as a lifeform elsewhere in the universe as a multicell creature similar to Earth’s jellyfish. It could be red, or green, or whatever color gives it adaptive advantage in its environment. It may be either land based or inhabit the oceans of Europa. Life evolving to this form is perfectly acceptable to scientific constraints. Could one reach Earth on a spaceship of its own design? I believe this improbable since a creature of this nature that is nearly indestructible would not need the evolutionary advantage of high intelligence. It would be as dumb as a bunny but successful on its home world like the dinosaurs once were on Earth. But we could bring one back to our planet in a jar.

Update October 28, 2019

A new creature went on display this past weekend at the Paris Zoological Park. The creatures exhibited are advertised as life form called “The Blob,” which has given it worldwide notoriety in the news media. The organism is a know earthly species identified in the scientific community as Physarum polycephalum, and more commonly known as Slime Mold. It has existed on Earth for at least a billion years and is not that uncommon. But who would try to convince their children to go to the zoo to see Physarum polycephalum or slime mold? Not many. But, “Hey, kids…Want to go see The Blob in real life? Great marketing!!

It is an intriguing life form, being neither plant or animal. It is a yellow, single-cell creature, that can double in size in a day and has proven intelligence although having no brain. They can join to form a larger colony, behaving as a single creature, devouring bacteria, molds, decaying leaves, and even oat flakes laying in its path. Alas, no devouring of human flesh.

Does slime mold qualify as a true “The Blob” candidate?

  • It has some intelligence—it can plot a path and move to its victims
  • It grows quickly in size
  • It’s very difficult to kill
  • If you cut it in two it can knit itself back together quickly
  • It’s yellow—The Blob should be red.
  • It doesn’t look Bloblike in shape…appearance closer to a flower than to Jello.
  • It has not been found in movie theaters or covering a diner.
  • And finally—it does not devour kittens or people.

So slime mold, although a fascinating life form, should not be confused with the real Blob.


I am a fiction writer, but research topics and provide posts like the one above for enlightenment and entertainment. If you liked it, please take a look at some of my other posts and my home page, R. A. Andrade. This post was prompted by the following passage from my novel, Three Remain:

Returning for the last load, the sound of boxes hitting the floor echoed from a shadowy aisle at the rear of the store, forcing his legs to a standstill. Faint beads of sweat formed at his hairline and his mind pictured a similarly darkened supermarket in the movie, The Blob, where a large, red, pulsating jellylike-blob rolls down an aisle absorbing people in its path.