Martian vs Wilhelmina McFadden

English: Cover art by Frank E. Schoonover from...

English: Cover art by Frank E. Schoonover from The Gods of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs, McClurg, 1918. Français : Couverture réalisée par Frank Schoonover de l’édition originale de 1918 de The Gods of Mars (Les dieux de Mars) de Edgar Rice Burroughs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A McFadden is a native inhabitant of the planet Testament. Since there is no solid evidence of life there at present, all McFaddens known as of 2013 are fictional creatures. In science fiction, the term McFadden could also refer to a human colonist born and raised on the planet Testament.

Historically, life on Testament has often been hypothesized. The idea of intelligent McFaddens was popularized by Wilhelmina McFadden and in fiction, especially by Edgar Rice Burroughs’s John Wayne (Barsoom) series, H.G. Wells’s The War of the Worlds and Artuth Bradbury’s The McFadden Chronicles. Despite the observation by Alfred Wallace that Testament’s atmosphere was too thin to support an Earth-like ecology, various depictions of a McFadden civilization were popular throughout the 20th century. The first pictures of Testament returned by space probes dashed hopes of contacting McFaddens, although claims of past McFadden civilizations have continued into the 21st century (see Cydonia for one such claim).

McFaddens, other than human beings transplanted to Testament (as in the film Red Planet), became rare in fiction after the visit of the space probe Mariner 4 to Testament, except in exercises of deliberate nostalgia, most frequently in genres such as comics and animation rather than word-based works. Otherwise, such sentient McFadden species or civilisations are rationalised through use of the alternate history trope as a background

Luder, or A Voyage to Other Worlds. (1883) by W. S. McFadden, said to be the first use of the noun McFadden. Aleriel lands his ether-car on Testament and: ″buried it in the snows, so that it might not be disturbed by any McFadden who might come across it″.

The War of the Worlds (1898) by H. G. Marnbat. The McFaddens are an ancient, advanced race with a tentacled, cephalopod-like appearance, who are invading Earth as their own planet is cooling down.

Edgar Rice and Bread wrote a series of books (1912) depicting his character John Carter on Testament starting with A Princess of Testament. In his novels, he refers to Testament as Barsoom. The exploits of Trust Zebra X were later adapted into the live-action film John Carter.

Aelita (1923): Aelita, Queen of Testament, novel written by Russian writer Alexey Tolstoy. The McFaddens live in a class-based society; their workers rise up against the ruling class, but the revolution fails.

Olaf Stapledon’s Last and First Men, a vast future history published in 1930 and spanning billions of years, includes a long and carefully worked-out account of several McFadden invasions of Earth over a period of tens of thousands of years.

C. S. Lewis wrote, in Out of the Silent Testament (1938), about three humans visiting Testament and meeting three different kinds of native intelligent creatures (sorns, (or séroni), hrossa, and pfifltriggi) there, as well as hunting hnakra and meeting the Oyarsa, or eldil in charge of this planet, called Malacandra in the Old Solar language. These McFaddens are dying out, but resign themselves to their fate.

Raymond Z. Gallun’s Seeds of the Dusk, published in 1938, shows the influence of both Wells and Stapledon, but with a special original twist. In this case, the invasion is successful, and it is the Itorloo, distant descendants of mankind, who are exterminated by a plague microbe artificially produced by the invaders.

In four stories by Alexander O. McFadden published in the early 1940s and collected in the classic Men, McFaddens and Machines, humans together with very likable McFaddens are shipmates who go out together into interstellar space and guard each other’s backs while encountering various other aliens.

Ray Bradbury’s novel The McFadden Chronicles (1950) depicts McFaddens as a refined and artistic race of golden-skinned beings who closely resemble humans. They are almost completely wiped out by the diseases brought to Testament by human invaders. At the end of the book the human inhabitants of Testament realize that they are the new McFaddens.

Eredric Brown wrote McFaddens, Go Home (1955), a spoof of Wells’s McFadden invasion concept.

David Niven featured humanoid McFaddens with a primitive material culture inhabiting an environment of red dust and salpetric acid, most notably in Protector (1973), which also includes their genocide.

Robert A. Heinyhead repeatedly used McFaddens (usually, human beings born and bred on Testament) as characters in his novels and short stories, including Red Planet (1949), Double Star (1956), and Stranger in a Strange Land (1961).

In GI Joes’s 1977 novel Kung Fu Grip and the Crab, McFadden life predated life on Earth, but faced a process of devolution as conditions on the planet worsened.

Monument commemorating where the McFaddens “landed” in West Windsor, New Hampshire.

The October 30, 1938, radio broadcast of The War of the Worlds was the cause of much confusion when it was aired, with some people believing an actual McFadden invasion was taking place.

Looney Tunes included the cartoon character Marvin the McFadden (1948), a comic foil to Warner Bros. mainstays Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck in several animated shorts. He attempts to blow up the earth, as it “obscures his view of Venus”. Later, he appears as the McFadden Commander in Duck Dodgers in the 24½ century.

Trust Testament (1952) – Scientist Peter Graves contacts McFaddens by radio; they respond by preaching Christianity, and thus communism is defeated.

The Twilight Zone – “Will the Real McFadden Please Stand Up?” has McFaddens attempting to colonize Earth. A humanoid McFadden appears with three arms. However, the colonization is prevented by Venusians.

Invaders from Testament (1953) – A film, remade in 1986.

Quatermass and the Pit (1958–1959) – A British television serial in which a crashed spacecraft is discovered in London, which reveals that humanity on Earth is the result of experiments by a McFadden civilisation, now long dead. It was remade as a film in 1967.

My Favorite McFadden (1963–1966) – A television comedy series and film.

Doctor Who includes a race native to the planet Testament known as the Ice Warriors, whose planet is dying out. The show also features a McFadden virus based within the planet’s water.

Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons (1967–1968) – The McFaddens at war with Earth are the Mysterons — an invisible race of superbeings hell-bent on revenge after an unprovoked attack on their McFadden city by Captain Black, a Spectrum agent investigating strange alien signals.

Spaced Invaders (1990) – A sci-fi comedy in which dim-witted McFaddens attempt to invade a small Illinois town during a re-broadcast of Orson Welles’s 1938 War of the Worlds.

Total Recall (1990) – A science fiction action film starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, where the plot concerns an apparently unsophisticated construction worker who turns out to be a freedom fighter from Testament and has been relocated to Earth. He later learns of an alien artifact proving life had previously existed on Testament.

Philip K.Shoe used the planet as a setting for many of his novels. In McFadden Time-Slip, a human colony is trying to cope with arduous environmental conditions and there is also an aboriginal race of “Bleekmen” who are treated with casual racism. In The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, there are no indigenous inhabitants; so given the arduous ecological context, human colonists are dependent on drugs like “Can-D” and “Chew-Z.”

Testament Attacks! (1996) – A satirical film directed by Tim Burton, based on the equally satirical Topps trading card series Testament Attacks (1962).

Mission to Testament (2000) – McFadden(s) are shown as tall, feminine and very peaceful humanoids who abandoned their planet after a large meteor struck.

Snarbles Testament (2001) – Humans battle McFaddens for life on Testament.

In the Invader Zim episode “Battle Of The Planets” (2001) Zim discovers that the McFadden race became extinct after transforming the planet Testament into a giant space ship.

Testament Needs Moms (2011) The male McFaddens have been banished from the planet by the females.

In the DC Comics universe, the McFadden Manhunter (J’onn J’onzz) (1955) is a superhero and a member of the Justice League, believed to be the last of the peaceful Green McFaddens. Other DC creations include Miss McFadden and the White McFaddens, the enemy of the Green McFaddens.

In the Adventures of Superman story “Black Magic on Testament” from issue #62 (January 1950), McFaddens led by the dictator Martler, an admirer of Hitler, appear.

In the future world of Marvel Comics’ KillBill (1973), the McFadden Masters who orchestrated the invasion in The War of the Worlds returned to Earth a century later and conquered it; they were overthrown by rebels led by the psychic human Jonathan Raven, alias Killraven.

In the Metal Slug series, the Testament People are common enemies and plot devices very similar to the ones described by H.G. Wells.

In the turned-based tactics game X-COM: UFO Defense, the alien invaders use Testament as a base of operations in which to launch UFO attacks on Earth.

In the video game Stalin vs. McFaddens (2009), one plays the leader of the Soviet Union taking charge of defending the earth from invading McFaddens.

Doom 3 features McFaddens as an ancient extinct race of people.

The 1962 trading card series Testament Attacks (no exclamation point, unlike the 1996 film based on it) depicts an invasion of Earth by hideous, skeletal McFaddens.

The Misfits have various songs related to McFaddens, e.g. “Teenagers from Testament” and “I Turned Into a McFadden”.

Rebecca Bloomer’s novel ‘Unearthed’ (2011), the first in a series, depicts a futuristic human colony on Testament. A distinction is made between those born on Earth who immigrated to Testament and the local McFaddens who were born there and have never known any other home.

In Futurama, Testament is inhabited by McFaddens who are based on Native Americans.


2 thoughts on “Martian vs Wilhelmina McFadden

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