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Space 1999 - A Matter of Balance

episode 2.15

UK 1976
produced by
Gerry Anderson, Fred Freiberger for ITC
directed by Charles Crichton
starring Martin Landau, Barbara Bain, Catherine Schell, Tony Anholt, Lynne Frederick, Stuart Wilson, John Hug, Nicholas Campbell, Brian Osborne
screenplay by Pip Baker, Jane Baker, created by Gerry Anderson, Sylvia Anderson, music by Derek Wadsworth, special effects by Brian Johnson

Space 1999

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Available on DVD !

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It all starts rather innocently, when young and impressionable botanist Shermeen (Lynne Frederick) helps Tony (Tony Anholt) with his beer-brewing experiments, and when his latest fails like all the others, he carelessly blames it on the hop she has created - which sends her crying to her room. In her room she suddenly has a vision of a bald, exotic-looking guy, Vindrus (Stuart Wilson), who sweettalks her. When she tells Doctor Russell (Barbara Bain) about that vision though, she tells her that it was probably all in her mind. However, this vision means she's not on the next landing party to an earth-like planet their runaway moon is passing but her colleague Eddie (Nicholas Campbell), but Vindrus sees to it that Eddie's knocked out by a plant spitting narcotics, so it's on again for Shermeen. Down on the planet, she splits from the others to collect samples while the others detect a temple that's guarded by a monster. The monster doesn't attack Shermeen though and she enters the temple and finds out it has something to do with Vindrus. Back on Moonbase Alpha, Commander Koenig (Martin Landau), Dr. Russell, shapeshifter Maya (Catherine Schell) and Tony speculate what the meaning of all this could be and finally come to the conclusion that Shermeen's visions were not just imagination but the attempt of a being of the antimatter universe to communicate with her, as for some reason the antimatter beings want to cross over into the matter universe, but since for every matter there needs to be antimatter and vice versa, for every antimatter being crossing over into our universe, one of ours must cross over into theirs. But while our heroes still try to work this out, Shermeen has already hijacked one of the moonbase's shuttles and made it back to the planet where she steps into a machine which is to bring Vindrus into our universe - and too late she learns she'll cross over into the antimatter universe in his place. Fortunately, Commander Koenig and company make it to the planet in time, manage to evade the monster to enter the temple where Koenig is able to push Vindrus back into his machine, reverse the process, and once Shermeen is back in our universe, Koenig blows the machine up - and before you know it (but after our heroes have made it off), the planet disappears, supposedly having gone back to antimatter for good.


A monster guarding a temple, a girl driven by visions, and an antimatter man all sound like promising plot elements, and the episode sure is some fun - but not quite there, as the science it relies on is just too hazy and only makes limited sense, and of course the fact that this is the first and also last appearance of the central character Shermeen really doesn't create the amount of emotional investment in her needed to make the story powerful (this is a fault this episode shares with many of the series though). Still, it's fun, just nothing resembling greatness.


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review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


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On the same day
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you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
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written by
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Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD