Saturday, 31 July 2010

Lost In Space Season 1

I've just completed a marathon run of the 1st season of 60's cult sci-fi series Lost In Space. Lost In Space follows the adventures of the intergalactic pioneering Robinson Family who leave an increasingly over populated Earth to begin a new human settlement on the planet Alpha Centauri. However, their mission has been sabotaged by devious robotics engineer Dr. Zachery Smith who unwittingly becomes a stowaway on the Robinson voyage. Each week, the Robinson Family along with co-pilot Major Don West and an all-purpose robot face danger and adventure as they make their way across the galaxy to find a new home...

Lost In Space was an Irwin Allen production for CBS that ran for 3 seasons, clocking up some 83 episodes, airing between September 15, 1965 and March 6, 1968. It never enjoyed the street cred. that Star Trek has, mainly because the show made no bones about being silly and fun. Most of the comedy is provided by Johnathon Harris who plays the lazy, self-serving, conniving and devious Dr. Smith who's often selling out the family to some alien race in exchange for a ride back to Earth. Smith's funniest moments are his put downs to the Robot ("Quiet, You Hulking Mass of Mechanical Ignorance!") or his oft repeated mantra - "Oh, the pain, the pain"

Most people when recalling Lost In Space will remember the gaudy, candy-colored planetscapes that were featured on the show every week, but Season 1 was shot in black & white. Lost In Space, unlike Star Trek dealt with fantasy elements as well as sci-fi themes and was often absurd in its logic. Among the special guests who appeared in the first season included Warren Oates as a cosmic cowboy, Michael Rennie (the alien from Day the Earth Stood Still), and a 14 year old Kurt Russell as an alien prince. Forbidden Planet's Robby the Robot also appeared as a special guest star in the episode entitled "War of the Robots"

Fox's Season 1 boxset collects all 29 episodes spread across 8 discs, plus as an extra, the original unaired pilot. Image and audio quality is very good, I imagine the materials were not as pristine as what Paramount used for their Star Trek series collections but the transfers are generally strong.

2 comments:

  1. I like the show - saw a few in syndicated reruns back in the day, and then borrowed some from a guy at college who taped them off cable station TBS when it was new. I have since watched the entire first season as well. I like the show a lot - though I have to admit leaning more to Trek in the end.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I really hated Lost In Space's goofiness when I was a kid, I thought it was silly, childrens' TV and I was having none of it, but there must have been something there that led me to icking up the boxsets and glad I am I did... I agree about Star Trek, especially so The Next Generation which I must say is my all-time favourite TV series - the show has been on constant daily re-run on TV here since it came out - I could pluck a stray minute out of any episode and immedialtely know which one it is...

    ReplyDelete