Varan the Unbelievable (1962)
Guest Review by Jason Scott
Hello! This time, I'll be reviewing my first kaiju movie. It's been years since I've watched any of these sorts of monster movies, so I jumped at the chance to watch this one when I stumbled across it on YouTube. It turned out to be an underwhelming experience. I can understand why Varan the Unbelievable became Varan the Obscure, making only one other cameo appearance in 1968's Destroy All Monsters!
Some research revealed that Varan had a very difficult gestation. The version I watched was an American version of the original Japanese film made in 1958. It was so drastically altered for US release that only a tiny portion of the Toho production is still evident at the end. The Japanese film was actually at first going to be a joint Japanese-American production intended for US television, but the American production company pulled out when much of the movie was already finished. Toho studios completed the film alone & released it in Japan, only to have it come to America years later in a very different form.
The movie starts off tensely with a village being destroyed by some unseen menace & terrified people fleeing for their lives. For a moment, I wondered if I had missed the first part of the film, but this early scene of destruction is a prelude to the opening act. A woman lets out a heart-rending scream as she watches her home being smashed before her eyes. The scene switches to a jungle altar where some cultists are carrying out frenzied rites of worship to a demonic statue that could have been used much later in The Exorcist. I'm also reminded of a scene in H.P Lovecraft's story The Call of Cthulhu, where deranged cultists are praying to their horrifying sleeping god whose awakening heralds doom. A close-up of the hideous statue is followed by the film's title appearing on screen. This prelude is creepy & emotionally affecting in a way the rest of the movie is decidedly not.
This statue's scarier than the actual monster, I think.
Although the monster is clearly called Varan in the title, when referred to in the movie itself he's always referred to as Obaki, meaning something like "prehistoric reptile". Why the American production crew would call the monster one name in the title & another name in the movie is a mystery. I say American production crew because the credits make no mention of anyone in the Japanese production crew. Rather than Ishiro Honda, Jerry Baerwitz is credited as the director. The American film can practically be considered a re-imagining & count as a distinct movie of its own.
There is now the first of many voice-over narrations by the male lead. This is James Bradley, a military officer & scientist played by Myron Healey. Healey is the only actor in this movie who had a serious career that spanned 50 years & many appearances in movies & television. He was most famous for playing villains, but gets to be the hero of this picture. Healey was also a very talented musician & singer who did performances on the radio while still a child.
Jim is conducting a joint American-Japanese scientific experiment called Operation Shizuka, which involves economically desalinating water using a newly devised chemical process. Being able to make salt water potable would certainly be of interest to the army, but I'm surprised no universities or private corporations are partnering to help conduct this research. An ideal saltwater lake to test the chemical process has been found on an isolated island off Japan. Jim has been given the unreserved support of the Japanese government & military, to the point of being able to order about Japanese military officers.
When we meet Jim, he's dictating a letter to his pretty Japanese wife, who's dutifully writing it all down. Jim's wife has the very un-Japanese name Anna. The actress playing her has the much more Japanese name Tsuruko Kobayashi. Kobayashi has a pretty sparse IMDb curriculum vitae, with only one other credit after appearing in this monstrous turkey of a movie. She & Healey actually have some chemistry & manage to appear as a halfway believable couple.
Anna & Jim
The main hitch to Jim's plan is the inhabitants of a village on the island the experiment is to be conducted on. Since the experiment could taint the lake, these people are supposed to be removed from the island for their own good, but are resisting all attempts at relocation. Anna expresses some concern about how the experiment is interfering with these villagers' lives, but Jim says that the potential benefits far outweighs the harm that is being done to a tiny population, which I'm inclined to agree with provided there really is a good chance this treatment will work. This particular lake has unique features that make it ideal, & Jim's very loathe to upset his plans for the sake of a few obstinate people.
When the two have concluded their conversation & are preparing to lock lips they're startled by a child wearing a bestial mask. This boy's named Matsu, & I thought at first he would be an infamous Kenny character for this movie, but he has practically no role in it. The child playing Matsu is named Derick Shimatsu & has only four credits to his name including this one. Matsu is supposed to be something like the errand boy for Jim, but he seems to be doing a pretty poor job of it. He keeps running off to the village, which is where he picked up his mask.
"When I grow up, I want to be an American just like you, sir!"
After this go-nowhere/do-nothing character is introduced, there's another scene of the idol being worshipped with drums & chants. The scene is overlaid by Jim's voice-over dismissing the whole business about the monster as superstitious nonsense. He's walking about outside his house at night mulling over the situation, not realizing that he's being stalked. In a nifty bit of editing, shots of Jim's feet walking along are intercut with shots of his shadower's feet. This fellow is obviously meant to be one of the villagers here to discourage Jim from continuing his pet experiment. Jim's struck on the back of the head & falls over heavily. He is not, however, knocked out, or even so badly hurt that he can't fight back against his assailant, who leaps on top of Jim & tries to strangle him.
Jim's down, but not for long.
The attacker is beaten off, & a moment later Anna comes out of the house. She hasn't heard what's happened, & Jim doesn't tell her anything. Amazingly, he doesn't have a scrape on him, & isn't groggy or bleeding from being hit over the head. The attacker must have been pretty weak. You'd think the villagers would have sent someone stronger & more competent as an assassin. A small group could even have been sent to ensure that Jim met his end. It's quite possible, though, that this villager was acting on his own initiative.
The next morning Jim talks to his second-in-command, a fawning flunky named Kishi, played by Clifford Kawada, another obscure actor with a paltry resume.
Kishi, who I caught napping in this screen cap.
Kishi says that the villagers are still resisting the relocation, & suggests that it might be time to bring in more men to forcefully move these people. Jim figures that there's little choice now, & authorizes the order for more troops. Kishi explains a bit more concerning what the villagers are saying about this monster supposedly at the bottom of the lake. Actually, what happens is that Kishi talks, but his words are lost beneath another voice-over by Jim giving his own version of what he's being told. It's a baffling scene. Why have Kishi talk on-screen only to have someone else talk right over him? Kawada's a pretty poor actor so maybe the director just didn't trust him to deliver a sustained scene of exposition. Here's where we get the monster named, although as I mentioned, it's called Obaki rather than Varan. The movie-makers apparently never looked at the title of their own film, which makes no reference whatsoever to any creature named Obaki.
So now there's shots of the Japanese military being mobilized. The number of troops & equipment called in is much more than what Jim was intending, but the Japanese government is responding to public anxiety about the possibility of Varan actually appearing when the tests begin. The Japanese people must be pretty credulous if a majority seriously believes that some prehistoric beast will emerge from a lake to run amok. People can believe some incredibly silly stuff, of course, but I find it hard to swallow that so many people in a modern industrialized state could have been overcome with such medieval superstitious terror as to justify sending a large armed force to a single lake where nothing has so far occurred.
Jim also says that a husband & wife Japanese reporter couple, Paul & Shidori Iso, have arrived on the island to investigate both on Operation Shizuka & the predicament with the villagers. These two are the leads in the original Japanese movie, but in this version they are nothing more than colorless background characters. Interestingly, an American movie poster prominently displays Shidori & Paul, despite their short-as-can-possibly-be roles within the film. To establish some kind of tenuous connection between the films, Jim claims to be a friend of Paul's, although the two never meet, even off-screen.
The rarely seen & never heard Paul & Shidori.
Anna does go to visit the reporter couple off-screen & returns quite melancholy. She asks whether there are any other lakes that might work for the experiment. Jim replies that there are all kinds of saltwater lakes, but none that are as good as the one that's been chosen, & it would be senseless to leave when they're just about to begin. When Jim presses for a reason as to her sudden sadness, Anna breaks down & claims that Jim is getting all kinds of bad press over the way the villagers are being treated. He's being represented as a ruthless foreign dictator who's just walking over humble people without a thought for their welfare. It seems that Jim is being made the public face for the evils of American imperialism.
A bit disturbed by this criticism & the effect it's having on his domestic life, Jim goes to talk with Kishi, who remarks that papers should be prohibited from printing such lies. Jim sticks up for the freedom of the press, saying that papers only report the facts, it's the officials & the public that distort those facts. I'd argue that news organizations have been guilty of distorting facts to increase circulation/ratings, but I do support Jim's liberal sentiment.
He's come up with a solution to this vexing village problem. Jim will let the villagers remain where they are, but forbid them from using the lake for anything, even though it's essential to their livelihood & culture. Half of the substantial force now deployed on the island will be used to block anyone from going near the lake, while the other half of the force will go hunting for food & water to sustain the villagers. The toadying Kishi congratulates Jim on finding a way to get things "back in proportion".
I don't think that this is really much of a solution. It's like telling people they can go to a well but can't draw any water from it. The villagers don't have to leave their homes, but are denied the chance to make a living, which is bound to be a severe blow to their pride. In a sense, they're going to be prisoners of the military until the experiment's completed. Jim's chief concern was to please Anna, though, & she does seem quite happy when told about the new plan.
To remind us of the reporters there's a few brief shots of Paul & Shidori wandering around doing, as the voice-over affirms, research on the superstition & science that this island is caught between. Then the tests finally begin. Metal cylinders filled with the anti-saline chemical are transported to the lake & sent hurtling into the water. Jim is looking through binoculars & coolly tells Kishi to note that the fish in the lake have died due to chemical contamination. So the villagers' primary means of subsistence has been destroyed at a stroke. The contamination will settle in the lake & there's no telling what the long-term effects will be. The villagers could end up as wards of the Japanese government & military, having to rely on external supports to prop them up, which reminds me of the toxic environment the reserve system created for Native peoples in North America. I suppose I'm being alarmist, but the fact remains that the villagers have been left dependent in at least the short term on others for their livelihood.
What's worse is that the chemicals seem to be having no effect so far as their chief purpose is concerned. Jim takes several samples over many hours, his frustration mounting as he detects only sediment, which has to settle before any tests can be done on the water's saltiness. Jim calms himself down & as he relaxes in Anna's arms jokes that the monster is down on the bottom of the lake kicking up a fuss over being disturbed.
That night a Japanese soldier is patrolling around the lake when the water begins ominously frothing. There's a brief shot of a huge foot stomping through the forest, causing the ground to shake. The soldier looks up to behold the crotch of some enormous creature. At this ghastly sight he screams, shoots his gun to no apparent effect, & collapses. When Jim & Kishi arrive on the scene, they find the soldier dead, having apparently had the life scared out of him. It would have been more Cthulhian to have the soldier's sanity scared out of him, but I suppose that would have required more thespian skills than the bit actor here could possibly have mustered.
Upon further investigation next day a gigantic footprint is found. Jim's starting to think there really is something to this whole monster myth & orders the patrols doubled. There are numerous shots of the army on the move as more artillery is set up around the lake. Jim is sending Anna off to Tokyo for safety without really telling her why. While he tries to persuade her to "be a good girl" & leave without question, explosions are heard from the lake. The head of Varan rises from the surface, & as the monster thrashes around the army lets him have it. It's hard to say whether any shots actually hit Varan, but in any case he spends a lot of time just splashing around in the water as though bewildered about what's happening.
This soldier appears throughout the movie & is the guy who relays Jim's orders to the army via Kishi.
It should be noted that at this point Varan really hasn't done anything malicious. He was resting in the lakebed when the military began its obnoxious experiments. There's no indication that Varan intentionally killed that soldier, & he could be emerging now merely to get some food since all the fish in the lake have been inconsiderately exterminated. So far, I would say that Varan could be more like Frankenstein's monster, a misunderstood creature pushed into destruction by a cruel world that rejects him.
Varan, perhaps stung by this very hostile reception, eventually submerges without actually leaving the lake. He stays underwater for five hours while the desalinating chemicals continue to settle on the lake bottom. Maybe Varan is contacting his local government official to complain about how his home is being polluted, but he gets put on a lengthy hold then transferred to three other offices before being told that he should contact the local government official he tried to talk to in the beginning. Then Varan is informed that the pollution was actually due to his own activities & he should stop kicking up so much sediment down in the lake. The final straw comes when an official from the tax agency informs Varan that he's in heavy arrears for property payments & will be assessed a sizeable bill that he should pay immediately or face a stiff penalty.
Having little patience for bureaucratic baloney, Varan decides to violently take matters into his own webbed hands. Once again he rises from the lake & this time he does come to shore to confront the rude army that continues to harass him with a barrage of firepower. For some reason, Varan objects to those cultists that do nothing but grovel to him. One of his first acts of vengeance is to smash the shrine devoted to his worship & crush the bearded old man who runs the place. This guy has appeared briefly many times up to this point, & I'm sure in the Japanese version he's a much more substantial figure. Here he ends up as the first sacrifice to the lake monster's fury. Now that he's destroyed his fan club, Varan might also take legal action to have the website, Facebook account, & Twitter feed shut down.
I mentioned Varan's webbed hands, but I just want to note them again. Other MMT reviews have mentioned how monsters like Godzilla are quick & adept swimmers despite being so bulky & having no apparent marine adaptations. The team behind Varan's suit design thought to give him webbed feet, which makes sense since he lives in a lake. It's a nice little touch & one of the few things I like about this monster.
One of the more half-decent shots of Varan crawling.
Varan can also walk upright, as this picture shows. Note how his left hand appears to be webbed.
Varan destroying stuff, which is supposed to be his chief occupation in this movie.
In the Japanese movie, Varan actually has webbing extending between his fore & hind limbs, allowing him to fly. The poster art shows Varan soaring through the air like a scaly flying squirrel. A scaly flying squirrel is hardly the most terrifying image one could conjure, but at least this ability gives Varan something distinctive. Godzilla couldn't fly, after all, although I would argue his Atomic Fire Breath is a better ability anyway. It gives him a flashy & destructive ranged weapon, which makes him a far more awesome opponent than if he were just a lumbering brute. I think one reason Gamera was able to compete with Godzilla is because that radioactive turtle could both breathe fire & fly, one-upping the King of the Monsters. Varan, especially in the American movie, has nothing that makes him really stand out. So far as movie monsters go, he's unremarkable. [Editor Nate: The technical side of suitmation works best with strictly bipedal monsters where you can distract the viewer with toothy heads and clawed hands. When you attempt to do a suitmation quadruped, be it Varan or Anguirus or Barugon just to name a few, it never looks anything more than a stuntman in a rubber suit crawling/hopping around on a soundstage. You'd think they would have learned to stick to two legs after a while.]
The army is pulling back & there are shots of military HQ as they try to figure out how to deal with this situation, which isn't exactly covered in the typical procedure manual. All the military shots were cribbed from the Japanese movie. Though some people speak Japanese in these scenes, it's not necessary to translate in order to understand what's going on so there's no attempt at dubbing or subtitling.
Jim, Anna, & Kishi are at a nearby canyon & have been keeping track of the action by means of the radio connected to their military jeep. Varan is moving to the village, churning up dust while crawling along on all fours like an excitable toddler, another image that really doesn't add to his aura of menace. The village is dutifully destroyed, & Anna emotionally flagellates herself for convincing Jim to keep the people where they were rather than relocating them to what would have been a safer area. I was expecting Jim would take all the blame on himself, but instead he tells Anna that no one is to blame for what's happened. Well, Jim was warned about the possible dangers of conducting the test in this particular lake but chose to go ahead with it anyway, but I have to admit that any sensible person in his place would have done the same.
Varan is now going to have some interaction with the main characters, due to cinematic techniques that try to blend the American movie scenes with the Japanese movie scenes of the monster. A Japanese soldier up on a cliff is confronted by a furious Varan & is completely terrified. Rather than trying to run off as quickly as possible, he steps backwards while screaming in horror. As can be expected, he ends up plummeting to his death. Like the soldier killed by the lake, this scene is part of the American movie, but since all the monster shots come from the Japanese version, Varan had to indirectly kill the soldiers. Shots of the monster were intercut with shots of the soldiers' fearful reactions, & the effect works fairly well, though it's far from seamless. Other than the elderly cultist, the Japanese soldier death scenes are the only ones where Varan kills someone on-screen, which was no doubt why it was felt necessary to shoot them. An appropriate sense of dread is easier to muster if Varan slays people whose facial expressions we get to see, even if these people are nameless non-entities.
Jim, Anna, & Kishi retreat to the shelter of a handy cave. Varan begins tearing apart the rock, although it's unclear whether he is trying to get at the puny humans or just so hopping mad that he's doing the equivalent of smashing the furniture. In a few shots the three leads cower in the cavern while staring out at the entrance where Varan's foot is visible.
A really bad screen cap, but you can just see Kishi's head off to the right, & the dark mass in silhouette to the left is Varan's foot.
The situation looks grim, as Varan's assault could lead to a landslide that would crush or trap those inside. They are saved, however, by the Japanese air force, which had earlier been scrambled & now for some reason ignites flares. Entranced by these bursts of light somehow, Varan calms his fury & lumbers off to investigate.
Anna, Jim, & Kishi emerge from the cave & get on the radio to figure out what the plan is. Varan has apparently decided to leave the neighborhood that has so recently deteriorated & resettle elsewhere. He's making the big city his home & is heading toward Honeida (I'm totally guessing how the name of this place is spelled), the biggest urban center on the island. There's a strange transition here where a scene from the Japanese movie in which the military is planning their strategy literally sweeps in from the side of the screen & pushes aside the American movie scene, only to be pushed back off-screen in a few moments. It's like the Japanese movie couldn't stand being supplanted by the American version & made a desperate attempt to assert itself, but couldn't sustain the effort for long.
The three leads clamber into the jeep & drive off, Jim warning the others to keep alert as he won't be using headlights for fear of drawing Varan's attention, though the monster seems to be far away at this point. There are more scenes of the military HQ as they prepare for Varan's eventual arrival. In one of these shots a tiny model of the monster can be seen on the strategic map that's been laid out, which is a neat touch. Despite the military's vigilance, Varan's first spotted by some hapless Japanese fishermen who haven't been informed about the danger lurking beneath the waves. The monster rears up out of the water & almost certainly kills the men. His appearance here is far more dramatic than the one at the lake, making Varan briefly appear as horrific as he is supposed to be.
How did the military get a toy version of Varan?
Jets roar out to do battle with the beast. Since Varan has no ranged weapon & can't fly in this American film version, there's little he can do against the planes that blast him relentlessly from above, though the pilots are pretty poor shots & few explosives actually find the mark. One pilot flies foolishly low to the water & gets smacked down by Varan, reminding me somewhat of King Kong attacking the planes on the Empire State building. Was this pilot perhaps planning some kind of kamikaze run? Was he just too inexperienced to be up in the air? Did he suffer a stroke & lose control of his plane? Or was there simply the realization that the star monster had to put up some kind of offense in order to avoid appearing completely lame?
Jim & his entourage are still on the island. Realizing he won't get to Honeida in time to be effective, he tells Kishi to get on the radio & alert the Japanese military to the possibility of using the anti-saline chemical as a weapon. He brought in extra shipments of this chemical, & figures that if an enormous concentrated dose of this agent is blown up in front of Varan, the monster will be killed off the same way the fishes were by a lesser dose. Reporter Paul (remember him?) is the only one who can handle the chemical safely, I suppose due to his earlier research. The ending of this movie will entirely use the Japanese film footage, so Paul has to be the one wielding the monster destroyer at the end. Since Jim's the male lead in the American version, though, he gets the honor of devising this strategy that will no doubt prove successful.
But what's this? The radio transmitter is inexplicably down. Jim & Kishi try desperately to repair the only means they have of getting in on the action that's unfolding. For the rest of the movie, this group will be little more than bystanders to what transpires.
Back at sea Varan has decided to avoid the storm & fury from the planes by retreating into the ocean depths. He's hiding under a rock as battleships scouring the surface launch depth charges, some of which seem to blow up right in the monster's face, which is really going to incite his spleen. The sight of Varan huddling under a rock to escape the military bombardment further detracts from the notion of him being a devastating scourge of humanity. There are brief scenes of Honeida being evacuated in preparation of the monster's arrival. A tremendous crowd of people is frantically fleeing & being loaded up into vehicles while the beast is contained out at sea.
Varan's wondering what all this fuss is about. All he wants is some understanding.
As night falls, the military forces assembled at the coast peer out apprehensively in tense anticipation. Varan emerges from out of the darkness on the horizon & swiftly makes his way to shore. He's greeted by a hell storm of concentrated firepower that explodes uselessly all around him as he surges menacingly onward.
Jim & Kishi have finally managed to get the radio operational & resume communications with the Japanese military. Jim's plan is quickly relayed, as well as instructions that parachute flares should be used to distract Varan until the trap's ready. In keeping with kaiju movie tradition, one man has an inordinate amount of influence over the complex military hierarchy, able to basically command it at will. Jim is at least a change from the usual professor-type who would be the voice of sound strategy. In the cast list of the original Japanese movie, there are several doctors who would no doubt have given some kind of quasi-scientific explanation for how a creature like Varan can exist. The American version dispenses with any kind of explanation, which is just as well, as no theory could really provide any sort of legitimacy to what is an entirely fantastic creature.
Varan has reached shore & steps out on to an airport amidst many explosions. He does some damage, but it seems to be more accidental than deliberate. It's like he turns about in a state of perplexity & his tail unintentionally smashes into nearby buildings. When Varan is intentionally destroying stuff, I imagine it's just his irate reaction to all the abuse he's been made to suffer throughout the movie. As I've mentioned, Varan simply doesn't appear inherently malevolent, but rather a confused relic of a past age. His lack of overt nastiness makes it hard to accept him as a dreadful agent of destruction. The furious attacks of the military seem to really be doing more harm than good.
The flares are ignited now. Varan queerly lifts up his head with mouth agape & gulps down the flares that descend from the sky. In the Japanese movie, Varan is tricked into swallowing bombs that explode inside him, which makes more sense than having him develop a taste for flares.
"Damn, is that ever good stuff! I should never have tried to quit smoking."
The chemical weaponry is being prepped now. Whole boxes of it are loaded up on a truck that Paul gets into. Shidori stays behind & acts very concerned, though since little has been done with these characters there's no emotional resonance at all to this scene. Paul drives the truck up to Varan, who has gone back into the water & is perhaps thinking he's never going to be accepted & should just get away from people generally. He won't be allowed to head off that easily, however. Paul gets out of the truck & runs off as Varan heads toward it, apparently curious. Shidori watches from a safe distance as Paul tries to get away. At one point he falls quite unconvincingly. It's supposed to look like he tripped, but it really just looks as though he suddenly decided to fall flat on the ground for some reason. Paul picks himself up & makes it to safety, though Varan is showing no inclination to chase him.
Varan's going to pay the price for his curiosity. The truck blows up in a powerful explosion that sends a great cloud of the noxious chemical streaming into his lungs. He lurches back out into the sea, not dead but seemingly in a critical state & definitely in no more mood for causing mayhem, intentionally or not.
Varan has tried to take on the big mean world, & lost.
The movie closes with more voice-overs by Jim. His chemical, while apparently useless for its intended purpose, is being kept as an emergency measure in case Varan returns at some point, as it's uncertain whether he's really dead. Jim & Anna are heading off to southern California where there's another saltwater lake to be experimented on. Presumably this one is monster-free. I would imagine it's standard procedure now to carefully survey each body of water before tests are performed to ensure that no rampaging beasts will be inadvertently loosed upon the world.
Jim's voice-over continues on to speculate about the possibility of Varan's return. There isn't enough trepidation in his voice. He speaks of this calamitous event in a tone that might be used to refer to the possible visit of an in-law who he dislikes but might secretly think is rather exciting. Oh, & Jim's still using the name Obaki. It's Varan, dammit! Get your facts straight!
OK, I've taken a few deep breaths now. The final shot of the film is of that repulsive statue glaring out in simmering wrath. There's obvious set-up for a sequel here, but Varan would never return except in the one cameo I mentioned at the beginning of this review. I'm a bit curious to see what the Japanese original is like, as a comparison of the two movies would be interesting. The plot overview of the Japanese movie that I read off Wikipedia presents a story quite dissimilar from the American take, & I've noted other differences, such as Varan's flight ability. [Editor Nate: A lot more anti-imperialist/anti-occupation/anti-American in tone, from what I understand, though a surprising amount of that makes its way through to this 1962 version, even with the US studio's filters.]
My assessment of Varan the Unbelievable, based solely on this American version, is fairly poor, as you have likely determined already. The director Jerry Baerwitz directed only one other movie, Wild Harvest, which came out in the same year & is so obscure IMDb has virtually nothing on it. There was little reason to believe he could do much with a monster movie. The strength of this sort of movie lies primarily with the monster, & for reasons I've brought up Varan simply is not on par with other offerings out there. There are other monsters with a lack of exciting powers, such as Rodan & Mothra (whose abilities do vary from one movie to the next), but these films had some ingredient that Varan lacks. The scenes with the military attacking the monster are too short & cut up to be very exciting. The same can be said of the scenes where urban areas are destroyed. The dread atmosphere that was summoned up very briefly at the start was fleetingly promising but couldn't be built upon. All in all, while Godzilla imprinted himself into popular culture, Varan is more like a figure in the crowd who stands out in a superficial way but is forgotten about by the end of the day.
Thanks for reading! I'll be back.
Written in June 2012 by Jason Scott and used with his permission.
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