Space 1999.

Dave

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Space 1999

Barbara Bain and her husband Martin Landau star in this series chronicling the voyage of a space station freed from Earth's gravity by an accidental nuclear explosion. Someone wrote that they must have really needed the money to pay for their mortgage/ kid's college fees, but it really wasn't that bad.

The premise is particularly bad: The Moon explodes and is sent hurtling away from Earth where it manages to encounter another planet every week. Just how fast is it travelling? That must have been some explosion, I think!

It's another Gerry Anderson production which we don't have a forum for yet (hint, hint).

Anderson already had had success with Stingray, FireBall XL5, Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet, but by 1970, Anderson was bored with getting puppet hands to pick up small phones and overdubbing voices to match. He made the move to live action debuting with 'UFO' and following with 'The Protectors'.

Sir Lew Grade, president of Associated Television , handed Gerry Anderson seven million dollars and the chance to create a brand new television series. Anderson could have the money and a chance to produce again as long as the series was set somewhere other than Earth. Grade’s instincts told him that it was time for a heavy duty science fiction show and so Moonbase Alpha was born.

The Moonbase sets, uniforms and the Eagle spacecraft were originally designed to have been a new Moonbase for a further series of 'UFO', but that show was cancelled.

The backstory for 'Space 1999' revolves around man’s colonization of the moon. Alpha was a pseudo-military complex with a commander, and officers of various ranks, but it’s main purpose was to act as a floating lab for doctors and scientists exploring the universe, but it lacked adventure. So Anderson decided to maroon his space travelers permanently. His first idea was of blowing up the Earth, but he felt that American audiences would be too squeamish over such an idea. He settled for blowing up a chunk of the moon.

The first season of Space 1999 was pretty dull and sterile looking. The plots were too complicated and the dialogue was serious. The second series was much more colourful, full of action and Victor Bergman, the scientific genius played by Barry Morse was gone. In his place was a brash young security chief Tony Verdeschi played by Tony Anholt. The opening episode of the 2nd season also introduced us to the character that would take over the series, Maya The Metamorph played by Catherine Shell. Maya was an alien capable of taking on the form of any other living creature.

The Eagle spacecraft were probably the best part of the show IMHO.

But in which other SciFi show did you get purple hairstyles and spacesuits with flared trousers!
 

ray gower

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Originally posted by Dave
Space 1999
But in which other SciFi show did you get purple hairstyles and spacesuits with flared trousers!
UFO?

Alond with 60's style swing jackets, turbine powered cars etc.
 

Dave

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The 'UFO' purple wigs...

(from the Gerry Anderson FAQ) http://www.ludd.luth.se/~kavli/Thunderbirds/gand.html

"Although numerous attempts to explain a scientific purpose for the purple wigs on the female staffers at SHADO Moonbase have been proposed through the years (the most common being that they are anti-static wigs to prevent migraines), the fact remains that they were merely part of Sylvia Anderson's design for the SHADO Moonbase women's costumes and serve no functional purpose.
By the way, not just women wore wigs in UFO. After the first few episodes were shot, Ed Bishop wore a blond wig to prevent damage to his dark hair from repeated bleachings. George Sewell (Col. Alec Freeman) and Michael Billington (Col. Paul Foster) also wore wigs to keep consistency in hair stylings and lengths since the episodes were shown out of order from their original shooting."

The answers to this and many other UFO-specific questions can be found in the UFO FAQ list, located at the anonymous FTP site ftp.doc.ic.ac.uk in the /public/media/tv/collections/tardis/uk/sci- fi/UFO directory.
 

Bayleaf48

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'Space 1999' was different fom other show fromthat era & I did watch some of them & found the show to be funny & yet at the same time enjoyable. :rolly2: :erm:
 

Technomage

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I remember seeing Space 1999 when it first came out and I thought it was quite well made - the stories were well thought out and the action scenes were as good as Star Trek. The actors seemed to be well suited to their parts, especially Martin Landau, who had that special something that you need to play the part of a leader.

Even though it's outdated now, I would like to see the series again, just for old times sake - actually I don't think it has ever been repeated here! :(
 

Technomage

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UFO was played here about a year ago, but it was on at 2 o'clock in the morning - what were they thinking! :rolleyes:
 

ray gower

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Originally posted by Dave
Space 1999
The premise is particularly bad: The Moon explodes and is sent hurtling away from Earth where it manages to encounter another planet every week. Just how fast is it travelling? That must have been some explosion, I think!
The beauty of Space 1999 was that events did not have to be considered as happening every week. The series was short enough for things to have happened months apart.

The fact they never got home helped
 

ray gower

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No idea of what you are thinking!:)

Actually sending the moon disappearing off on its own may not require as big a bang as one might suspect.

Browsing through a couple of old National Geographics in the quacks this morning I found a couple of pieces of interest.

One was on Karakatoa, which they reckon put a five degree wobble in the earths axial rotation when it exploded. That was a force of about a million megatonnes. And is an effect that is still being damped out. That was with an un-directed charge. In comparison the Yanks and Russians had about 2.5 million Megatonnes of bang in their respective bunkers at the height of nuclear stupidity.

The other was on the forces required to actually move an object in space. If you are a spaceman bobbing in nothingness, simply throwing a bolt in any direction will send you in the opposite with the same momentum.

So given a 5 million tonne nuclear dump, burried in one location as they had so cleverly did in the series (effectively creating a whopping gurt shaped charge), lighting the blue touch paper and standing back to watch the pretty colours could quite easily create the thrust required.
 

Dave

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OK, in serious mode now.

I guess you could produce an explosion big enough to send the moon across the galaxy, I'll accept what National Geographic says.

And I'll even allow months between episodes, rather than the week that I had assumed. Any more than that, and I think it would be too unbelievable.

So, we have the moon passing by new inhabited planets in other solar systems at a rate of 1 every month. It is clear that the stars we know that have planets are greater than first thought, but they are still going to be about 10 or 11 light years apart.

(I don't want to detail that again, but I worked it out in the 'Star Trek: Enterprise' forum when we discussed how far away Qo'nos could be.)

That equals 1 light year every 3 days. That is unbelievably fast. It is 100 times the speed of light. Impossible. It breaks fundamental principals of relativity and physics.

This isn't a ship with the ability to Warp space, this is a big asteriod!

Just to add insult to the injury, the Eagles go off to visit the other planets, then come back again. How did they slow down? How did they then catch the moon up? The premise is at odds with the physics of the universe, sorry!

Maybe if there were 1000 years between the episodes, but obviously, there aren't.
 

Bayleaf48

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You can get as serious as you want to Dave & you've certainly made a good point there
 

ray gower

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I agree whole heartedly about the distances and times involved.
But hey this is over twenty years ago. Things were a lot closer then and there wouldn't be much of a story otherwise.

On the otherhand:
They made a fair use of people coming to see them.
They did occaisionally remember what happened to them a week ago.
They significantly did not posses Holo-decks to fill in the gaps.
And as you said- If something broke- It stayed broke
 

Bayleaf48

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That is true about when it was made & so they wouldn't have known things that they know now
 

Dave

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The theory of special relativity was published about 1910, I think.

The other points, I do agree with. They didn't have to use those filler stories because it was action-based every week.

They had an advantage over the more modern series we are comparing it with; they only had 2 series, with a gap year in between too, I think, which gives much more time for writing the episodes.
 

Technomage

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I must admit the apparent speed of the Moon did always annoy me, it probably should have had Warp engines to get around as much as it did! :D

Mind you, they could have encountered a few wormholes, or space folds along the way, that would have been a reasonable explanation for their travels. I wonder if that ever happened in the series, I can't remember whether it did or not.
 

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