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back to article Space: 1999 returning to TV?

They've been rebooted, re-imagined and uncut, but now Space 1999 is getting its own on-screen revival next to sci-fi classics Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek and Star Wars. ITV Studios America and HDFilms are reported to be developing Space: 2099, a "contemporary re-imagination" of the Saturday morning staple from the Gerry and …

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They were already married IIRC.

I certainly recall the rest of the cast referring to them as "the Landaus".

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Facepalm

"Bain and Landau always seemed to come as a matched pair "

People seem to have forgotten that Mission Impossible was TV series long before the short arsed one made very bad films with that title.

Bain and Landau came as pair from that series.

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UFO was far better

Had much better vehicles,the groovy purple wigs, hot moon babes and did I mention the vehicles? Moonbase interceptors, SkyDiver, the mobiles, the UFOs themselves. All done with miniatures, the effects hold up today even if some of the dialog doesn't ("Don't panic, Alec!"). I met Ed Bishop, who played Cmdr. Straker, at an Anderson convention in Bradford. Very nice bloke, although he passed a few years ago.

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They had better keep the original music.

That's all I have to say on the matter.

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The Moon

Hope they put in a good explanation on how the moon is able to travel from planet to planet.

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The Moon II

And how it takes less than several millenia to do so.

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Boffin

The Moon III

It was hitting space warps.

I guess inter stellar travel is way easier than we think

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Coat

...That's no Moon!

sorry.

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Might work

if they ditched the silly nuclear explosions thing and replaced it with say mysterious alien technology (black monolith anyone). The thing I loved (as a teenager) about the show was its sense of wonder about the universe (inherited no doubt form 2001). What I didn't like was the fact that it too often spilled over into mystical mumbo-jumbo and sometimes plain anti-science. If they had stuck to Clark's Third Law it could have been a great series instead of just an enjoyable one.

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Silly nuclear explosions?

SILLY NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS?

I was 8 - watching that much stuff blow up was precisely what I wanted to see. I don't want a big black box I want stuff blowing up.

Space 1999's first episode might go a long way to explaining my choice of chemistry...

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a-hem...

"It told the story of boffins working on Moonbase Alpha who were propelled into fantastic adventures beyond imagination after a massive nuclear explosion on the moon on 13 September 1999 sent our little satellite planet into deep space."

Our little satellite planet? No. The Moon orbits planet Earth, so it is a moon. Planets orbit the sun. Moons orbit planets. Once it was blown out of earth orbit and shot out across space it still wasn't orbiting the sun, so I guess it became a sodding great asteroid.

Still not a planet.

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There is some muscle here wants to see you, says he's called Pluto.

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Technically speaking, because of their relative size and mass, they both orbit the sun around a barycentre that happens to sit fairly close to the earth's centre of gravity. The moon is relatively enormous as moons go; it's more than fair to call earth/luna a twin planetary system rather than a planet with a moon.

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I thought one of the other critical parts of a planet classification was the ability to retain an atmosphere?

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Boffin

Retain an atmosphere?

No. Counter example: mercury. ANy atmosphere it has is blasted off the surface by the solar wind, and can by no means be considered to be 'retained'.

IIRC, the criteria for something being a planet (currently) are along the lines of:

- Orbits its parent star, not another object (i.e. not a moon)

- Has sufficient mass to become near-spherical (i.e. not an asteroid like Ceres)

- Has a centre of rotation within its surface (i.e. not Pluto / Charon which orbit a point between them)

Pluto is a bone of contention because it historically has been considered to be a planet. However, recent discoveries of similar-sized objects in the solar system (such as Haumea, Makemake and Eris, which is actually thought to be slightly larger than Pluto) have led to its reclassification.

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When will they decide to try.... space above and beyond?

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Go

After reading that article and seeing the ad with Cumberbach next to it

...I reckon that old Sherlock himself would make an excellent Cmdr John Koenig.

Harry Hill for Professor Victor Bergman.

Dunno about Doctor Helena Russell but I am sure she will be chosen for her acting abilities.

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Hmmm, yes

His mum was in UFO so there's a family connection.

Barbara Bain got the Doctor Russell role partly due to being Mrs Martin Landau at the time...

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Anonymous Coward

The same thing happened...

Either before, during or after - I really can't remember - Mission Impossible

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Bronze badge

Too much Fi, not enough Sci

The premise of moving the Moon at all is bad enough, but to move it interstellar distances?

Why not ditch the re-imaginings and come up with something new? There are some great sci-fi writers around, why not put them to use.

My vote is for a series based on Larry Niven's "Tales of Known Space".

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Known Space... Yes yes yes!

An upvote is not enough to express my agreement with that suggestion.

Niven is the author of some of the best sci-fi ever written, IM not so HO.

It would, however, need a very good director, given the quantity of asides and introspection in some of the works - try getting the narrative from Protector, for example, into a TV/Movie friendly format without loosing the subtlety of the Pak's worldview and without turning the Pak into Hollywood Terminator-style psychos.

Some of the collaborative Kzinti Wars stories would be eminently filmable as long as the director could resist the temptation to portray the Kzin as Simba-in-a-Spacesuit, as some of the less able cover artists of the volumes on my bookshelves have regrettably done.

Oh, and I'll see your Larry Niven and raise you an Alfred Bester - The Stars My Destination would be a fun movie for those raised on sci-fi that relies more on thought than on CGI pyros.

There's a lot of written sci-fi out there, especially from the mid 20th century, that Hollywood and TV have overlooked and which could usefully be examined instead of the current vogue for weakly re-making other's works of twenty or thirty years past.

But then again, as a friend of mine was given to observing, the pictures are always better on the radio, not to mention the printed word.

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Forget Known Space...

I'd love to see the Smoke Ring on film!

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I@ll see your Larry Niven Known Space (love it though I do) and raise you Peter F Hamilton, either Nights Dawn trilogy or Pandora's Star+Judas Unchained. Now THAT is epic space opera!

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Space:1999 The Return?

Space 1999 - unofficial episode - The Return To Moonbase Alpha (Ep 50)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ne4jiduA8sQ&feature=related

After a 3:50sec or so intro, it seems to get somewhat interesting...

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Why?

Wasn't once enough for this dog that ruined Sunday afternoons for two years of pre-internet teen hell?

What's next I wonder? The High Chaparral? Chopper Squad?

Gah!

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Stop

CHiPs...

Careful now...

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Don't even joke about it.

I'm pretty sure Channel 9 has already played something that was pretty much a remake of Chopper Squad. I can't find anything on the net (what the hell do you search for?) but my (beer clouded) recollection is it had the Maori bloke from Waterrats in it.

Patrol Boat: The Next Generation (AKA Sea Patrol) has already run longer than the original series...

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Coat

Channel 9?

Bono Estente!

Mantanent, Los Squadios Chopperistos!

Ethethethethetheth, pethethethetheth, Boutros Boutros Gali!

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Obelisk vs. monolith

I think obelisks have to taper (or at least normally do). The big black jobbies in 2001 were referred to as monoliths. (sorry, wouldn't split hairs if it weren't my favouritest film).

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Why?

Why re-produce a sci-fi series from the 1970s? Sci-fi is now a lot more constricted than back then. You can do a lot less today. (for big budget productions)

Why do it in the US? The UK has much greater production standards, in the US it needs to conform to the wishes of some narrow minded add sellers.

Of course you can try to break out of conventional modern sci-fi and try something new. The Germans recently tried that with "Ijon Tichy". http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xO9ppicjlFg

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Happy

Thanks for that! I laughed my ass off!

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Stanislaw Lem - TV - Awesome

Thanks for that, it was brilliant

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I saw that a while back

Not bad considering that everything by Lem that I've read would be pretty much unfilmable. (Solaris excluded - I haven't read the book and the Tarkovsky film is pretty much pure Tarkovsky - beautiful visuals combined with a dreary mysticism that hasn't much to do with Lem's sharp-minded satire.)

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FAIL

Fer f***s sake

Why dont they just throw a heap of money at Terry Nation's family to buy the rights to Blakes 7 and remake that

Hell all they need is the CGI and some decent actors since the scripts were so bloody good in the first place.

<<off to mutter darkly about the beeb and its £3.99 effects department...

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Facepalm

Re: Remaking Blakes 7 (modulo apostrophe)

"Hell all they need is the CGI and some decent actors since the scripts were so bloody good in the first place."

Do you think that some Peter Jackson type, in possession of a bevy of allegedly better actors and a heap of shekels, could ever resist the temptation to, ahem, improve those same 'bloody good scripts'?

Sets that wobble and billow as the actors walk past and props that Blue Peter were able to reproduce more realistically with detergent bottles and sticky-backed plastic really are not all that much of a problem on top of a good, innovative scripts.

<flamebait>

Compare the current well-meaning and angst-ridden mess that is Dr Who with its heyday in the 60s and 70s.

</flamebait>

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Yep, if they're going to remake something, Blakes 7 would be the one i'd like to see, great plots and with some decent current actors it has great potential for a remake! Even with the cheap sets etc the atmosphere was fantastic because of the storylines.

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Bronze badge

Can't they just give the money to Joss Whedon instead

so we can have another series of Firefly?

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Downvoted?

<mutter> bloody philistine wouldn't know decent space sci-fi if it hit 'em in the face </mutter>

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FAIL

'Twasn't me...

... but I've never thought Joss Whedon was that good, to be honest.

Firefly was okay, but the whole "space cowboy" thing was beaten to death in literary SF decades ago. It's just lazy writing. (Then again, I had no time for "Buffy" and its spinoff either. The joke was already thinly spread over the original movie.)

It's odd how many people praise Whedon, but don't realise that Russell T. Davies very blatantly ripped off Whedon's shows when rebooting Doctor Who. Why do you think it became 25% tiresome soap opera, 25% fan service and 25% tedious fantasy masturbation of the "Ninjas vs. Pirates vs. Aliens!" variety? (The other 25%, the endless Deus ex Machina endings as RTD realised he'd written himself into a corner and had to pull a rabbit out of a previously unseen hat, are entirely Davies' contribution.)

We don't need "More of X". Rebooting old franchises is stupid. Blake's 7—I refuse to let the BBC's graphics department dictate punctuation rules to me—is the only series of that era that could conceivably have legs.

As for Space:1999... it's already been rebooted, no less than four times! Two of the reboots were called "Battlestar Galactica", another was Star Trek: Voyager, while the most recent (and unsuccessful) attempt was "Stargate: Universe".

That particular SF sub-genre has been done to death. Let it die.

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Thumbs up for the RTD "writing" diatribe!

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Meh

@Steve Evans

"Our little satellite planet? No. The Moon orbits planet Earth, so it is a moon. Planets orbit the sun. Moons orbit planets. Once it was blown out of earth orbit and shot out across space it still wasn't orbiting the sun, so I guess it became a sodding great asteroid.

Still not a planet."

They ought to set you on as main script-writer for the new series because of your insight into planetary (sorry asteroidal) propulsion systems.

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Facepalm

Supercar!

"Thunderbirds, Stingray, Fireball XL5, Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons, Joe 90"

Didn't you miss the first one, Supercar? The world would have collapsed completely if MasterSpy had gotten his way...

Watched the YouTube clip - must admit I don't remember that one. What's "Dragon" got to do with a tentacled thing with a furnace? Or didn't I follow the comments properly? The "sound effects" seemed quite annoying.

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From memory, the first one was Four Feather Falls, then Supercar.

I liked Space Patrol myself, but that was nigh on 50 years ago...

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Two opening themes

There were actually two opening themes. The first being the best and most remembered. Here is a reminder of the second season theme.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6AeumXb2Zc

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Yup, they spent a mint on the revamp, with the more urgent theme, the smaller Main Mission and such. All to please the American audience, which promptly hated the changes. The fact that this budget blowout went unrewarded with audience share stateside is what killed it.

Moral: Never try to give the public what they want, 'cos they invariably turn out to have no idea what it really is.

Footnote: If they really wanted to cast Catherine Schell full time, WTF was wrong with her appearance as the Guardian of Piri[1]? Too expensive using that much toupee tape to avoid the wrath of the censors in every episode?

[1] Feel free to drool here. Everyone did at the time.

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Thank you for that I'd totally forgotten...

(drool)

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Blakes 7

This is crying out for a remake.

The original had interesting characters, better spaceships, a more interesting universe and mercifully few men in rubber suits pretending to be aliens.

The beeb turned Dr Who, which was utter crap, into gold. Put similar production values to Blakes 7 and they'd have a guaranteed winner.

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Bronze badge

It's been remade - maybe it passed you buy? - it was called Farscape.

Forget the Buck Rogers premiss: at its heart Farscape was a bunch of escaped prisoners on the run from a totalitarian empire, just like B7. They even had a Servalan character at the end, albeit with a less catchy name. And I'd rather Blake's 7 had more spiritual children, like Farscape, than a dodgy Moffat refit. I mean, who could replace Paul Darrow? OTOH the only bits of Space: 1999 worth salvaging are the über-cool Eagles, the twangy guitur music, and the buxom women in tight-fitting beige sweaters being molested by tentacled spotlights.

Only remake things that you can improve. Space: 1999 can easily be improved; Blake's 7 would be a much tougher proposition.

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Silver badge

BLAKES 7!!!!!

Having revisited it I can say that when I first watched it many moons ago my standards were poor and expectations were low enough to think it was cool.

Now.....

Having matured with high standards and great expectations I really does look c**p.

I blame Star Wars as the catalyst to my expectations.

By the way, what did happen to Blake in the end? Was he killed by the poorly made scenery on the film set?

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What happened...

Gareth Thomas left the series at the end of the 2nd year (Blake was lost due to the space war). He said he'd come back for the finale.

At the end of the 3rd year, Avon seemed to have found Blake in some sort of medical facility but things turned out to be a little hazy.

When year 4 ended, it turned out that Blake was a bounty hunter on a planet somewhere and eventually ended up being shot by Avon before the rest of the crew was shot by the Federation guards (although we never *saw* Avon being shot).

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