Tea Time


Set in the fanatic alternate history of the 1800s, Tea Time is a comedy that follows a conflicted mad scientist. Elizabeth is in a proper and strict world where inventors are held in high regard, but only ones that fit in. Her work has been rejected (again) and she has had it. Her Aunt Judith wants nothing more than for her to give up this foolishness, marry a proper gentleman and get out of her house (taking her machines with her). This particular day Judith has a different potential suitor waiting for her. A man Elizabeth is somewhat familiar with…

Tea Time (2014) is an award-winning steampunk short written and directed by J. Derek Howard and starring Erin Heckel (Elizabeth), William Gantt (George) and Adrielle Perkins (Judith). The film was “was shot with $3,000 over two days with a Canon 5D Mark 3 and some very talented people.” Watch this wonderful film here …

Tea Time is one of the best short steampunk films I’ve seen! It’s second only to The Skyship Chronicles (2015)! However, The Skyship Chronicles is more about adventure, while Tea Time is more about whimsy, so maybe they’re each #1 in those respects. Tea Time looks great, especially considering the budget, equipment and time involved; but, the film works mostly because of Erin Heckel‘s performance as the lovely mad inventor. She is just delightful! I love her excitement of upon receiving the letter from the Inventors Institute, and her quick descent into madness after refusing their rejection. “Fools! All of them! I will make them rue the day they reject me!” she exclaims. “My next masterpiece will put an end to their ignorance – forever!” she adds, with sardonic joy. Then, of, course, she’s jolted back to reality by Aunt Judith! It’s all just so wonderfully charming! I would love to see Heckel as Elizabeth in further tales spun within this clockwork universe! She could embark on her own Voyages Extraordinaires like those of one of her inspirations, Jules Verne, for the alias, Jules Burroughs, she uses to submit her creations to the Inventors Institute. The other inspiration, of course, is Edgar Rice Burroughs. I imagine Elizabeth and George cornered by a ferocious Tyrannosaurs Rex at the center of the Earth unable to do anything except wait for Elizabeth’s weapon to warm up. They close their eyes, accepting their fate. Then, as the dinosaur’s open jaws, filled with razor-sharp teeth, come within inches of their faces, the weapon fires, drenching them both in prehistoric grue! Elizabeth, of course, delivers a witty retort, while George composes himself. Wishful thinking!


Erin Heckel as Elizabeth in Tea Time


4 thoughts on “Tea Time

  1. Pingback: The Mechanical Grave « My Heart Explodes

  2. Pingback: Tea Time « Girls, Guns & Zombies!

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