This disaster/survival behemoth takes place in a rapidly browning Big Apple enclosed--like everyplace else--in a ""greenhouse shell"" of CO2 and SO2 which blots out the sun, the workings of technology, and human sanity. Writer Gordon Mariner and nice little rich girl Susan meet on a plane where the dialogue hints at torpors to come: ""Oh, really, Mr. Mariner, must you come on so archetypically male?"" But once aloft in a penthouse, after those archetypical horror signals--clogged streets, flaring tempers, oppressive heat--Mariner and Susan witness beginnings of the end. As the city bums, gangs loot and murder, vicious mobs scramble for food, and gunfire and slaughter erupt on the darkling plain of Central Park. At the close, Susan, who traded sex for medicine to save Mariner, dies before the sun once again blazes down. In spite of the tube talk and punchboard characters, Dodson mounts a few celluloid horror summits. Low tide On the Beach.