This page will analyze H.G. Wells' story, as well as show comparisons and summaries.


Over the years, The Food of the Gods has been published in collections of H.G. Wells stories, but also has been distributed on its own. Here are some examples of some of the more creative covers that have been created for the story over the years. Several of the covers have focused on the insects and animals that appear to have grown enormous due to the story's "Boomfood."
The last two covers are actually from two comic adaptations that were made, though both by different companies.


The Food of the Gods (also titled The Food of the Gods and How it Came to Earth) chronicles the creation of a substance called Herakleophorbia, by two men named Bensington and Redwood. Later dubbing their creation “Boomfood,” they soon discover that it can cause some animals and plants to grow to an enormous size.
To conduct further experiments with their new discovery, they create an experimental farm, and hire an elderly couple to tend to some chickens that figure into their experiment. However, the couple's attention to their duties does not work out, and some of the chickens run rampant throughout the countryside. To make matters worse, several other creatures such as rats and wasps get into the “Boomfood,” and also end up terrorizing the populace. A civil engineer named Cossar urges Bensington and Redwood to take responsibility for what has happened. The gentlemen go to work to wipe out the giant pests, and also end up burning the experimental farm down.
What little remains of the food then ends up being used on a number of human infants. Redwood uses some on his own son, causing him to grow enormous, much to the horror of his mother. Cossar ends up feeding some to his three sons as well, and some is even slipped into the meals of royal princess a Doctor is attending to. Unknown directly to Redwood or Bensington, the couple that was supervising their experimental farm also took some of the “Boomfood,” and have been feeding it to their grandson, Caddles. In the case of Redwood and Cossar's sons, a giant nursery is fashioned for the men to educate their offspring, including large playthings and large-type books.
As the children grow up, many of them find themselves in a world that is hostile towards their size and 'change.' The 'Sons of Cossar' prove to be quite adept and thoughtful. The eldest constructs himself an enormous bicycle, but has no place to ride it. The brothers then decide to build a road, before the little people among them decry their decimation of their property. The boys then decide to use their skills to build houses for the little people as a way to help them, but grow discontented and sour when their plans are shouted down and decried. As they grow from boys to men, the world has grown even more discontent with the giants, as it also seems that the “Boomfood” has somehow leaked into the world again, with outbreaks here and there with overgrowth of giant vegetation and various animals known throughout the countryside.
The young Caddles ends up being raised under the more worse of conditions, with the small town where he grows up placing him to work in a chalk-pit. However, his curiousity soon is piqued by a number of things concerning the little people among him. At one point, he wanders into London looking for answers, but his curiosity and questioning soon lead to his death.
The son of Redwood happens to chance upon the giant princess who was also fed “Boomfood” at a young age, and the two end up falling in love. As she is already affianced to a prince in a neighboring region, their affair is soon forbidden. However, the princess soon runs off with Redwood.
By this time, outrage against the giants has reached a fever pitch, with people planning to take up arms against the giants, in the wake of Caddles' 'rampage' on London, and Redwood's absconding with the princess.
Redwood's father is soon made aware of where his son, the princess, and the 'Sons of Cossar' are. He is also given a message by the normal-sized persons. Redwood makes it to their encampment, where the Cossars' father also dwells.
Within their dwelling, Redwood delivers the message to the giants and to Cossar. The demands are for the giants to leave, and go off to a place where they will not pro-create, but eventually die out, thereby letting their existence fade away as if they had never been.
These terms are shouted down by the giants, who refuse to just die out. Several are of the persuasion thaat they will fight, even though the small humans outnumber them by the millions. Redwood's son suggests that they also make more “Boomfood,” letting it loose on the animals and plants, as well as feeding it to the humans. His thinking suggests a point of view that would push the world to keep growing, instead of the backwards-thinking method of it's current society.
Redwood, instead of going back to deliver the giants' answer, chooses to stay with them and Cossar, as they prepare for war, for their right to live and thrive on the Earth.


The following scenes seem pulled from the book to the film:
1. An experimental farm is create in Food of the Gods, the scientists experiment on chickens making the gigantic, much like the enlarged ducks.
2. Village of the Giants's title could have been inspired by Book II of Food of the Gods, titled The Food Comes to the Village, where a young boy named Caddles is given a bit by an older family member, and then ends up becoming a big problem for the small town's vicar and socialite.
3. The adults in the book don't really seem that shocked by the young giants, let alone the giant babies (maybe this could be why noone really reacts to the giants in the film).
4. The giant spider in Nancy's basement could be an offshoot of several plots in which the 'Boomfood' substance causes all manner of tiny creatures to grow.
5. The relationship between the giant princess and a giant named Redwood Cossar, seems to have been pulled fro the chapter 'The Giant Lovers,' and kind of wrapped around the delinquent teens, notably as young Redwood talks with the Princess, she 'grows' to accept her difference and stature, much like some of the girls (notably Merrie, Elsa & Jean) in the film.
6. After awhile in the book, some adults rally against the giants, wanting to stop their growth, and possibly taking over, which is kind of represented in Village's Sheriff character. Though the good teens led by Mike could be another offshoot of this.
7. Near the end of the book, the giants talk about how they will eventually take over their world, though their numbers are less than 50, as they begin to wage a war on the little people. In Village of the Giants, it seems that the giant teens plan to first conquer Hainesville and then slowly move out.
Growth in Bert I's film happens instantaneously, while in the book, the 'Food of the Gods' is given to the giants when they were still normal-sized infants, causing them to slowly grow into 5-10 foot infants and children, before they topped off close to 30 feet. apparently, the growth substance stops once the children reached adulthood, which explains why it would not work on any adults. The elements of the growth formula mutating rats and other elements, Bert I would later bring to the screen in 1976 with The Food of the Gods. The even campier 1989 sequel Food of the Gods II actually touched on giving the food to a young person and him growing bigger, but the film drifted into camp as the giant rats and whatnot begin to terrorize a college campus. It's almost a shame that not even any illustrations exist for any of Well's texts on the story of Food of the Gods. One wonders of an artists' rendering using early 20th century technology to build oversized machinations for the young giants.