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Space 1999 - Earthbound

episode 1.14
Mondbasis Alpha 1 - Captain Zantor

UK / Italy 1976
produced by
Sylvia Anderson, Gerry Anderson (executive) for Group 3/ITC, RAI
directed by Charles Crichton
starring Martin Landau, Barbara Bain, Barry Morse, Prentis Hancock, Nick Tate, Zienia Merton, Roy Dotrice, Christopher Lee, Clifton Jones, Anton Phillips, Suzanne Roquette
screenplay by Anthony Terpiloff, created by Gerry Anderson, Sylvia Anderson, music by Barry Gray

TV-series
Space 1999

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Earth's runaway moon crosses paths with a Kaldorian spaceship, that lands on its surface, & the good people of moonbase Alpha, always grateful for a little distraction, soon enter the vessel, & while examining it, they accidently kill one of the cryogenically frozen Kaldorians.

However, upon waking up, the rest of the Kaldorians, led by Zontar (Christophjer Lee) bear no grudge, since the death quite clearly was an accident, & they tell Alpha's commander Koenig (Martin Landau) & his crew their story: Their home planet Kaldor was dieing so the Kaldorians sent out ships to various planets to ensure their race's survival ... & one such planet is earth. So the Kaldorian ship has made a short stop on moon just to use it as a launchpad to go to earth ...

What they didn't know though is that the moon by now is several lightyears away from earth, & it would take the Kaldorian spaceship another 75 years to get there ... no problem say the Kaldorians let's just have another round of cryogenic sleep, & since one of our crewmembers has just died, why not take one of Alpha's crew with us ... & it seems Zontrar would favour Alpha's head physican doc Helena Russell (Barbara Bain) to become his travel companion.

However, Koenig insists that the computer picks who's allowed to go, & then Alpha has an earth politician, commissioner Simmonds (Roy Dotirce) amongst their midst, & he is rather keen on going back to earth, even earth 75 years in his future, & he doesn't trust the computer picking him, so he decides to blackmail his way aboard the Kaldorians' ship, by threatening to destroy the power unit of the moonbase ...

Koenig is left with no choice but to give in, & Zontar, always the compassionate alien, naturally offers him a place aboard his ship ...

Later. Simmobnds wakes up in his cryogenic chamber, convinced that he has done his 75 years of sleep, & tries to contact earth, but earth doesn't answer. Alpha on the other hand receives his signals, & it turns out that in alll the turmoil everyone has forgotten to feed the Kaldorians' computer with Simmonds personal matrix, so he wasn't put to cryogenic sleep at all but now has to spend the next 75 years trapped inside the cryogenic chamber ... & his chances for survival are very low indeed, especially since he's just out of reach to be saved by the moon's crew. Divine justice after all. & what's more, it turns out that the computer would have picked him to go with the Kaldorians in the first place.

 

Of course, this is another talky episode (something Space 1999 was generally suffering from), but at the same time it has Christopher Lee with long white hair in surreal warpaint wearing glittery robes, plus one very stupid looking UFO amidst the rather convincing spaceship-miniatures, which should be worth at least some chuckles.

 

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
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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

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD