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: Mars is dead, nothing there but a few scraps of lichen. Professor Bernard Quatermass
: Five million years ago it may have been very different. Suppose at that time there were living beings on it with techniques that let them visit the Earth at a time when the most highly evolved creatures here, our own ancestors, were only a type of Pliocene ape. Minister of Defense
: Go on. Professor Bernard Quatermass
: They may have wanted to found another colony, when their own world was doomed, but couldn't endure our atmosphere, so they experimented. Minister of Defense
: Oh, and the insects were responsible? Professor Bernard Quatermass
: There is clearly some connection. My guess is that those were ape mutations being brought back for release on Earth. Col. Breen
: And you really believe this was possible? That apes were systematically taken from this planet to another and... Professor Bernard Quatermass
: Altered, by selective breeding, atomic surgery, methods we can't guess, and with new faculties instilled in them, high intelligence, perhaps something else. Howell
: In effect, a colonization. Professor Bernard Quatermass
: It would be a way of possessing the Earth. Only a colony by proxy, but better than leaving nothing at all behind. Howell
: Surely it had to be carried out on a hugh scale. Professor Bernard Quatermass
: Yes, if I'm right, if I'm right, we've come on a single instance, probably an accident, a landing that went wrong and they all died. The Thames valley was swamp then. Minister of Defense
: You realize what you are implying? That we owe our human condition here to the intervention of insects. Professor Bernard Quatermass
: I suppose I am.
: [Preparing his drill
] I did steel armour plating within six inches thick. Swish - just like that. Oh, it was legal. A bloke got shut in a strong room. But I got him out. It was a secret job like this one. Col. Breen
: Then I'm glad you don't talk about it.
Professor Bernard Quatermass
: These shapes, suggests some sort of... apparatus... instruments... Col. Breen
: Your imagination is running wild Professor Bernard Quatermass
: Isn't yours? Col. Breen