Talking Squids in Outer Space
The Pinnacle of SF
Novels: Significant TSiOS Presence
White Light, by William Barton & Michael Capobianco
The Manifold series, by Stephen Baxter
Engines of Light, by Ken MacLeod
The Starfarers Quartet, by Vonda N. McIntyre:
Arthur C. Clarke’s Venus Prime, by Paul Preuss
The Heritage Universe, by Charles Sheffield
The War of the Worlds, by H.G. Wells
[Gutenberg project edition]
The Sector General novels, by James White
- Hospital Station (1962)
- Star Surgeon (1963)
- The Aliens Among Us (1964)
- Major Operation (1971)
- Futures Past (1977)
- Ambulance Ship (1979)
- Sector General (1983)
- Star Healer (1985)
- Code Blue — Emergency! (1987)
- The Genocidal Healer (1992)
- The Galactic Gourmet (1996)
- Final Diagnosis (1997)
- Mind Changer (1998)
- Beginning Operations (2001)
Talking Squids in Outer Space: Short fiction
“Sheena 5,” by Stephen Baxter, featured on talkingsquidsinouterspace.com with the kind permission of the author. First published: Analog, May 2000. Collected in
Phase Space, HarperCollins (UK) Aug 2002.
Reprinted in Year's Best SF #6, ed David Hartwell, Harper Eos 2001.
“The Dust,” by Jayme Lynn Blaschke.
Interzone no. 129;
The Ant-Men of Tibet and Other Stories, ed David Pringle (Big Engine 2001)
“The Shining Ones,” by Arthur C. Clarke. Analog Audio Cassette, 2003.
“The Town on Blighted Sea,”
A.M. Dellamonica. Strange Horizons, 21 August 2006
“The Raptures of the Deep”
Rosaleen Love. Gathering the Bones, ed. Dann, Campbell, & Etchison (HarperCollins 2003); Year's Best Fantasy 4, ed. David Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer, 2004 [
“The Gods Hate Kansas,” by Joseph Millard. Startling Stories, 1941, Monarch Books, 1964. Discussed by Bud Webster in F&SF
Here Be Squids
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, by Jules Verne. Tr. Frederick Paul Walter & Walter James Miller. Naval Institute Press. 1993.
[Gutenberg Project edition]
Beast, by Peter Benchley. Ballantine, 1992.
The Ghost from the Grand Banks and The Deep Range, by Arthur C. Clarke. (fictionwise.com omnibus edition.)
The Moon and the Sun, by Vonda N. McIntyre. Pocket Books, 1997. Nebula award.
Reefsong, by Carol Severance. Del Rey, 1991
The Rifters Series, by Peter Watts. Tor Books.
Sphere, by Michael Crichton. Knopf, 1987; Ballantine, 1997.
That Darn Squid God, by Nick Pollotta and James Clay. Wildside Press, 2004
"Site Fourteen," by Laura Anne Gilman. Revisions, ed. Julie Czerneda & Isaac Szpindel. Daw Books, 2004.
"Neon Sea Dreams," by Rupert Goodwins. Intertext #38, September-October 1997
Sculpture: Genetically modified bears by Theo Kaccoufa
Postage stamps: Celebrations of cephalopods including Mickey Mouse as Captain Nemo facing the giant squid
Milk cartons: Have you seen this squid?
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Disney, 1954.
The Fabulous World
of Jules Verne, directed by Karel Zeman, 1958. Review by Waldrop & Person.
"20,000 Tentacles under the sea - Cephalopods in cinema," by Roland C. Anderson, at The Cephalopod Page
Sphere, Warner Studios, 1998
Galaxy Quest. Universal Studios, 1999.
I Married a Monster from Outer Space. Paramount, 1958.
Men in Black. Columbia Tristar, 1997
The Algebraist, by Iain M. Banks. Time Warner, 2004. Although the US cover is covered with (five-legged?) cephalopods, there are no talking squids in outer space in the novel.
They Came from beyond Space, based on "The Gods Hate Kansas," by Joseph Millard,
Offsite links to the natural history of cephalopods
& other marine invertebrates
TED talks: David Gallo: Underwater Astonishments. Some visitors may find the YouTube version more flexible.
In Search of Giant Squid, Newport (OR) Aquarium; Burke Museum, University of Washington, Seattle
"Monster warning to protect oceans," by Mark Norman, BBC News
Violet the Octopus Opens a Jar
"Squid Skin Reveals Hidden Messages," Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, Massachusetts, USA.
Heteroteuthis dispar ejects bioluminescent clouds instead of ink, a behavior called "fire shooting."
Not much to look at, but what a personality:
Squid study reveals personality plus
Nature: Encountering Sea Monsters, including Bob Cranston's attempt to communicate with the large and predatory Humboldt squid using strobe lights, an interview with Australian cephalopod researcher Dr. Mark Norman, and cuttlefish wallpaper. The PBS website lets you find rebroadcasts in your area.
"New squid on the (ice) block" — giant squid on display in Melbourne.
Squid Genome Project at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, Massachusetts.
Baby Broad Squid squidcam at The Science Site
Cephalopod database by Dr. James B. Wood & Catriona Day
Sepioteuthis sepioidea, at The Cephalopod Page (TCP), created and maintained by Dr. James B. Wood
Architeuthis dux, the giant squid
Raising giant squid larvae: Steve O'Shea
Blaschka Marine Invertebrates
Walking Octopus video
Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus
News Reports from the Real World
Architeuthis & other marine invertebrates
Squidmom! "Broody squid keep young in hand" at Nature.com, 14 December 2005. Complete with slideshow and video.
Squid are researcher's "favorite guys," Boston Globe, 7 November 2005.
Scientists Capture Giant Squid in Photos, By Hiroko Tabuchi, Associated Press, 28 September 2005. [Slide Show]
"Suckers for gay trysts, fiery females and rough sex — squid secrets exposed," by Frank Urquhart, scotsman.com, 26 September 2005
"Giant of the deep snapped," Melbourne, Australia, Herald Sun, 28 September 2005
"Japanese zoologists say they have made the first recording of a live giant squid, one of the strangest and most elusive creatures in the world." [continued in complete article — but no photos!]
Washington Post article with photo
(may require log-in)
Star Tribune article with photos
The Sun: naked squid pic!
Deep-sea monster caught on tape, MSNBC, 20 December 2001
"Giant squid is something 'fundamentally different,' illustrating how little we know about sea's depths..."
[includes cool video, requires IE etc to play, makes you watch an ad first]
Other Tentacular Entities of Note
Noodly appendage: The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster
Pulp Octopus!: "Images of science fiction, fantasy, and adventure pulp covers featuring the wily octopus."
The Elder Gods: Cthulhu & H.P. Lovecraft
Tentacled toys! Chthulu lives!
PowerSquid (non-organic tentacular entity)
Report science-fictional squid sightings, natural history links, and other amusing cephalopod links:
Email the Squiditor
Updated Friday February 03 2012