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Invisibility in Books and Film: How Much Do You Know?

By Rachel Mauro
Maryland Newsline
Friday, Nov. 16, 2007

Science may be getting a late start on discovering the mysteries of invisibility, but science fiction has had this phenomenon covered for over a century. How well do you know the books, movies, television shows and comics that explore this elusive idea?

1. Harry Potter’s magical invisibility cloak will shield him from all onlookers except those using…

A wand
A broom
The Marauder’s Map
The Room of Requirement

2. Why can Violet Parr, the Disney/Pixar character from the animated movie, “The Incredibles,” turn invisible?

She fell into a vat of superhero paste.
She was born to superhero parents.
She was struck by lightning.
She is the queen of insecure, teenage girls.

3. Who was the author who wrote the 19th-century book about invisibility that spawned numerous media adaptations?

Charles Dickens
Jane Austen
Jules Verne
H.G. Wells

4. Which 1960s science fiction television series introduced the idea of a cloaking device?

“Star Trek”
“Lost in Space”
“I Dream of Genie”

5. Which popular television series now features invisibility?

“American Idol”
“Ugly Betty”
“Family Guy”

6. Why does Gandalf tell Frodo the Hobbit that he shouldn’t use the Ring to become invisible in “The Lord of the Rings?”

Because then the villain, Sauron, would be called to him.
Because it would ultimately put him under the Ring’s power.
Because then Gandalf wouldn’t see where he was.
Because then the other Hobbits would get jealous.

7. How does Jerry of the cartoon “Tom and Jerry” cat and mouse duo become invisible?

Tom sprays his mouse hole with invisible paste.
Jerry desperately needs to escape an advancing cat.
Tom chases Jerry into a bottle of invisible ink.
Jerry travels to the planet Invisible Mouse Land.

8. During which war did Hollywood produce a film about using invisibility to fight an American enemy?

The Civil War
World War I
World War II
The Vietnam War

9. Which female Marvel comics superhero has the ability to turn invisible?

Susan Storm from “The Fantastic Four”
Rogue from “X-Men”
Mary Jane Parker from “Spiderman”
Elektra from “Daredevil”

10. Which cast member from the original “Saturday Night Live” went on to star in a comedy film about invisibility?

Dan Aykroyd
Chevy Chase
Laraine Newman
Will Ferrell

Copyright © 2007 University of Maryland Philip Merrill College of Journalism

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