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March 5, 2008 7:59 AM   Subscribe

How would the military really kill a giant monster? The excellent Danger Room blog considers the problem in a two part post. Of course, if you want to find out how giant your monster is first, you may want to consult this discussion comparing monster heights.
posted by blahblahblah (36 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
If it's a living thing, better to use poison or nerve gas, or some kind of anesthetic. Hell, collect some of those jellyfish that produce those horrific neurotoxin, and dump a bucket full on the creature's head.
posted by Pastabagel at 8:25 AM on March 5, 2008


Killing movie monsters is cool and all, but what really got me about the post was its link to this rather disturbing thought experiment.
posted by saladin at 8:33 AM on March 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


Similar thoughts: The Biology of B-Movie Monsters
posted by kuujjuarapik at 8:38 AM on March 5, 2008


I think they are ignoring the psyops tactics that could be employed. Several approaches come to mind:

1) Loud playing of Michael Bolton music - This will drive any creature with ears in the other direction
2) A helicopter carrying a gigantic cake - This could be used in a carrot-on-a-stick method to draw the creature away from civilization, since everyone (even monsters) loves cake
3) Shoot the monster full of Ecstacy - Add in blacklights, a strong drum & bass sound, lollipops, and lots of day-glo colors to put the monster in rave mode where it finds it's love for all mankind
4) Giant blocks of cheese - All giants have lactose intolerance, so a giant block of cheese would give the monster a giant tummy ache, making it want to go lie down rather than rampage
5) Pictures of sexy monsters - Making giant banners of sexy 500 foot monsters would put the monster in the mood for love rather than mayhem
6) Sign the monster up for Facebook - Once signed up, the monster would be inundated with requests and other shenanigans, leaving no time to crush buildings

Other thoughts?
posted by Argyle at 8:38 AM on March 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Hah. My father has worked on the railgun project mentioned in the second part of the article. Given the speed and range of a railgun strike, I would think it would behoove our City Fathers to mount a series of railgun stations on the tops of some of our larger and more delectable city's skyscrapers. These roof mounted weapons would not be as powerful as their larger, ship mounted brethren, but I think they could be strong and agile enough to act as sniper rifles. A dedicated team of plucky, multicultural heroes with a lot left to live for could use these weapons to pick at larger monster's weak points (eyes, open maw, giant pulsating brain, etc) in order to bring it down as it emerges from the watery depths.

As for those cities that are both delicious and land-locked, or suburban areas without many tall buildings, I suggest my father's much larger, but sadly underfunded (thanks a lot, Collapse of Communism) particle beam project. A fully powered version of the prototype I saw when I was 12 could probably vaporize a creature from orbit with only minor (read: devastated city block) collateral damage. Heck, a medium size device mounted in a plasma-sheeted flying disc could probably harry the creature away from more populated areas in order for its larger cousin to light up the sky and do its thing.

I really hope that a giant beast of some variety attempts to lay waste to civilization as we know it soon. Dad's been getting kind of bored and restless lately, and we all know what happens when those scientist-types have too much time on their hands. I suspect he'll have the squirrel problem in his backyard solved shortly once the house gets rewired, and there's nothing like an attack of a giant mutated burrow owl or something to keep him from turning his attention on to the inaccurate paperboy.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 8:45 AM on March 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


I think the question would be much more interesting if the army was training one average young man armed only with a knife to defeat these monsters (given no element of surprise). Is it possible?
posted by blue_beetle at 8:46 AM on March 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Any discussion is moot without the inclusion of Giant Robots.
posted by Dizzy at 8:46 AM on March 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Unarmored living thing? We would kill it like we kill any large animal. Shot to the brain. A sniper with an ordinary rifle could do this. A 200lbs brain is just as susceptible to a hot piece of lead as a 3lbs brain. Might need to take a couple shots to hasten the demise and not let the thing suffer.

There's also something to be said about penetrating such a thick skull but the good lord invented DU and .50 sniper rifles for a reason.

The real question is how do we safely capture something that big?
posted by damn dirty ape at 8:50 AM on March 5, 2008


damn dirty ape, the article presumes that a creature that's 50 meters tall is going to have skin that's several feet thick, against which conventional projectiles are sure to be totally ineffective.
posted by saladin at 9:10 AM on March 5, 2008


A few feet of soft material isnt going to stop a .50 cal bullet. Heck, the police use them to crack steel engine blocks. Sounds like a job for a certain asavage to me.
posted by damn dirty ape at 9:13 AM on March 5, 2008


2) A helicopter carrying a gigantic cake - This could be used in a carrot-on-a-stick method to draw the creature away from civilization, since everyone (even monsters) loves cake

A better cake-related solution would be to create a large sign that said, either in Monsterese, using pictographs, or whatever, "IF YOU COME THIS WAY, THERE WILL BE CAKE. ALSO YOU WERE ADOPTED."

This is important because cake itself has an uncertain effect. If the monster sees that the cake is a carrot cake, and it doesn't like carrot cake, you're boned. Likewise if the monster sees that the cake is clearly frosted with store-brand scab frosting from a tin. Instead, you want to hold out the promise of cake. And the promise of cake binds all creatures under its spell.

There would, of course, not actually be any cake.

Other solutions:

*Leak the information that its vital organs are aphrodisiacs and wait for the invisible hand to kill it inside of an hour.

*Build a monster-sized anvil and drop it onto the monster's head.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:15 AM on March 5, 2008 [5 favorites]


Also, this little guy is seeing action in Iraq. Heck, it looks like a prop from a monster movie.
posted by damn dirty ape at 9:18 AM on March 5, 2008


what really got me about the post was its link to this rather disturbing thought experiment.

No kidding. I could have happily gone all day without reading that.
posted by Optamystic at 9:21 AM on March 5, 2008


"Sign the monster up for Facebook - Once signed up, the monster would be inundated with requests"

Or better: Metafilter. Snark kills, etc.
posted by effbot at 9:30 AM on March 5, 2008


I'd just sneak up behind it and then shout at it wicked loud. That's how I kill everything.
posted by Divine_Wino at 9:32 AM on March 5, 2008


As I've said elsewhere the Cloverfield monster clearly some kind of end of level boss, and no amount of shooting the thing will do any good. What they need to do is look for some kind of switch or something, which will drop it into lava or drop rocks on it's head or something.
posted by Artw at 9:49 AM on March 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Unarmored living thing? We would kill it like we kill any large animal. Shot to the brain. A sniper with an ordinary rifle could do this. A 200lbs brain is just as susceptible to a hot piece of lead as a 3lbs brain.

I don't think so. It's not just the penetration that kills, it's the resultant trauma around the penetration. People can, and have, survived brain penetration that didn't cause much trauma. However, the monster may well mistake his wife for a hat.

This is the kind of sniper rifle you'd need.
posted by me & my monkey at 9:49 AM on March 5, 2008


A 200lbs brain is just as susceptible to a hot piece of lead as a 3lbs brain. Might need to take a couple shots to hasten the demise and not let the thing suffer.

What if it doesn't have a central brain in the sense we understand it?

Spoiler ahead:














Also, the article makes a false assumption about the height of the Cloverfield monster, ie that it would have to be not much bigger than the Statue of Liberty in order for the statue to come into its line of vision to have seen it to swipe it. The monster seems to have no problem seeing the considerably shorter camera man hero at the end of the film. Given the number of animals we know of which have fields of vision dissimilar to humans their assumption is woefully misplaced.
posted by biffa at 9:54 AM on March 5, 2008


I don't understand what the monster has to do with oil.
posted by srboisvert at 10:05 AM on March 5, 2008


monster + 1 quidjillion years == oil
posted by bonehead at 10:14 AM on March 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


biplanes are NOT for sissies. hmph. (see my profile pic for more info).

;)

posted by mwhybark at 10:46 AM on March 5, 2008


I would get the Acme Monster Eradicator (Large Size). Some Assembly Required.
posted by sfts2 at 11:10 AM on March 5, 2008


How about pheromones? Seems like if you can get the monster to follow a "pleasant" scent then it might come along, per the CAKE suggestion. That or you might convince it to go dry hump a building until it gets pooped out or chafed or whatever. Mayeb it will finish in five minutes, have a smoke and fall asleep.
posted by GuyZero at 11:13 AM on March 5, 2008


Dried Monster Urine?
posted by sfts2 at 11:30 AM on March 5, 2008


I had a Cloverfield dream last week. In my dream, the Cloverfield monster was replaced by Gammera. A flying turtle was trying to kill me. I kept getting away from it by diving underwater and swimming very fast. Turtles are so frikken slow. It took its anger out by trashing D.C.
I woke up when things got real hot and I could see Gammera a block from where I was standing.
posted by doctorschlock at 11:42 AM on March 5, 2008


I'd just sneak up behind it and then shout at it wicked loud. That's how I kill everything.

Even your name is a killing word.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:49 AM on March 5, 2008


Easy answer: Cast the monster in such classic films as Brokeback Mountain and Monster's Ball, introduce it to Mary Kate Olsen, and let nature take its course.

Too soon?
posted by hifiparasol at 12:25 PM on March 5, 2008


That's weird. I had a dream last week where I was trying to kill this little doctor guy. Huh. Anyway, I suggest deploying pudgy Japanese school children, and lots of them.
posted by gamera at 12:29 PM on March 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


The answer is simple enough: encourage global warming.

Once the waters start to rise, we'll need to create a whole class of several-stories tall human-operated construction robots in order to build levees or dikes around most major coastal cities. Some of the robots will of course be used in criminal enterprises, which will in turn necessitate the development of specialized giant robot police units. These can easily be re-purposed for giant monster interdiction and suppression operations.

Either that or establish a granting agency in order to encourage plucky Korean families with underachieving sons and archery-champion daughters to set up snack stands next to major urban rivers.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:07 PM on March 5, 2008


Sounds like a job for a certain asavage to me.

Ooooooo this would be the BEST MYTHBUSTERS EPISODE EVER.
posted by blahblahblah at 1:23 PM on March 5, 2008


Heh, I've always wondered about this. Thanks for the link.
posted by spiderskull at 1:44 PM on March 5, 2008


Too soon?

Not funny enough.
posted by EarBucket at 2:15 PM on March 5, 2008


Well, the last time, I waited for it to swallow me, then I deployed my chain saw and worked my way out from it's esophagus. If I were to recommend one way, this would not be it.

The time before that I climbed onto it's back and used a reflective material so that the air-strike could get a good lock on. It seemed to work, but ouch. Make sure your parachute is fire retardant. And radiation proof.

Of course, no one let's me forget the one time I lured one to an active volcano, and then while it was being careful not to step in the lava, I poisoned it with some tainted meat. That one always makes me laugh.

Then there was the one that I beat playing chess, well it was kind of like chess, except the board was a city block, and the pieces were subway cars... that one was messy.

Oh, and I'm not allowed to talk much about it for security reasons, but once I caused one to sneeze so hard that it had a heart attack. True story.

*sigh*

Good times.
posted by quin at 2:36 PM on March 5, 2008


hey i was just watching will wright talk (at 14:30 on the countdown) about how some people in japan's SDF actually plan out what to do in case godzilla attacks! among other things :P
posted by kliuless at 3:49 PM on March 5, 2008


....should be able to save New York (apologies to the inhabitants of Denver, you're not well located for naval gunfire support -- but you're not at such high risk from mosnters anyway).

I'm not worried. Hickenlooper can fix anything.
posted by Octoparrot at 4:42 PM on March 5, 2008


I would go with the French made NATO BLU-107 Durandal or a Chinese 200-4 if in Asia.

Both are designed to fire a rocket downward for penetration and then set off a charge to create a 15 meter crater in hardened runways. I imagine monster skin is not as tough as hardened concrete. And even if it is, if the monster is 150 meters tall, that is a tenth of its hight as a hole in its back. like an exploding bullet would be to a human.
posted by Megafly at 4:57 PM on March 5, 2008


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