"There is a creature alive today who has survived millions of years of evolution without change, without passion, and without logic. It lives to kill. A mindless eating machine, it will attack and devour anything. It is as though God created the devil and gave him jaws."

- From the preview for  'JAWS- 1975



. . . is a common one, shared by anyone who has ever looked at the sea and imagined the monsters it contains. It goes something like this. You're swimming in the ocean just after dusk, salty black water surrounding you as far as you can see. Weary from swimming, you rest for a moment, letting your feet drift lazily down as you look at the points of light  just beginning to appear overhead.  Panic, dull at first but growing with intensity, hits when you realize that you cannot touch the bottom. You decide you can brave the moment it would take to test the water just beneath your toes but surface quickly in a panic when you feel nothing.

It's then that you feel it; a gentle swell lifting you from below and to the left, a movement of water that indicates that you are not alone in this patch of sea and that something . . . something big . . . . is very nearby. Just as the thought registers, you turn in time to see a fin edging its way through the water towards you. As it closes in,  you see a giant conical snout rising, its mouth yawning open . . .

My apologies to Peter Benchley aside, the preceding sentences represent a primal fear that each and every human possesses deep in their subconscious, a fear of being attacked and eaten alive. There are a few predators on Earth are capable of such a thing but none quite so terrifying as Carcharodon carcharias, the Great White Shark. But is the nightmare accurate? Is the monster the true beast or is there another side to this magnificent creature?