When it was first broadcast in 1975, there had never been a more lavishly produced science fiction TV series than Thunderbirds
creators Gerry and Sylvia Anderson's Space: 1999
, a British production whose budget for the first of its two seasons ran an astounding 3.25 million pounds. What keeps us fans enthralled after all these years has only partly to due with the first-rate production values, the plausibly constructed spaceship models, and expert special effects. The tone of the show is one of scientific dispassion, setting it apart from its TV sci-fi predecessors such as Star Trek
, whose mood was more convivial. Our heroes here are in dire circumstances that require cool heads as a survival trait. Those circumstances: the 311 crew members of Moonbase Alpha
--including Commander John Koenig (Martin Landau), Chief Medical Officer Dr. Helena Russell (Landau's Mission: Impossible
costar and then-wife Barbara Bain), and Professor Victor Bergman (Barry Morse, who relentlessly pursued David Janssen on The Fugitive
)--experience a cataclysm that causes the moon to break away from Earth's orbit and travel endlessly through space, turning our heroes into unintentional explorers. No TV series has created a more palpable feel of hard science fiction than this.
Of course the show is not without its detractors; it has been soundly lambasted for its many scientific errors. No less august a figure than Isaac Asimov criticized the show for its premise in the opening episode, "Breakaway," which had nuclear explosions on the "dark side of the moon" somehow propelling it out of Earth's orbit and flying through space without regard to any physical laws. In "Earthbound," aliens traveling to Earth state it will take them 75 years to reach their destination, making one wonder why it didn't take the moon that long to encounter the aliens. While these are serious complaints, fans tend to remember the scientific seriousness of the series and the sense of awe created by the many strange creatures and phenomena that the crew members encounter on their journey through the galaxy. --Jim Gay
In the year 1999, a spectacular explosion at a lunar nuclear waste dump sends the moon out of Earth’s orbit. In this seminal sci-fi series from producer Gerry Anderson (Thunderbirds, UFO), the men and women of Moonbase Alpha are suddenly propelled on a treacherous journey across the universe in search of extraordinary new worlds. Left with no way home, the Earthling citizens are forced to embark upon the greatest adventure of their lives, encountering bizarre life forms and strange phenomena as they struggle to survive among the awe-inspiring wonders of outer space.
All 24 first season episodes of this acclaimed space adventure have been restored in stunning high definition and presented with newly-created 5.1 surround soundtracks, and hours of brand-new bonus features.
With its progressive plotlines, an outstanding cast, and astonishing special effects from Oscar® winner Brian Johnson (Alien, The Empire Strikes Back), SPACE: 1999 has secured its place as one of the most thought-provoking series of the 20th century—and beyond.
DISC 1: Breakaway / Matter of Life and Death / Black Sun / Ring Around the Moon / Earthbound
DISC 2: Another Time, Another Place / Missing Link / Guardian of Piri / Force of Life / Alpha Child
DISC 3: The Last Sunset / Voyager’s Return / Collision Course / Death’s Other Dominion / The Full Circle
DISC 4: End Of Eternity / War Games / The Last Enemy / The Troubled Spirit / Space Brain
DISC 5: The Infernal Machine / Mission Of The Darians / Dragon’s Domain / Testament Of Arkadia
DISC 6: Bonus Features