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The Outer Limits: Volume 1

4 out of 5 stars 197 customer reviews

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(Jun 05, 2007)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

"The best program of its type ever to run on network TV!" ?Stephen King

Perhaps marked for its opening sequence and eerie voice-over "There is nothing wrong with your television set. Do not attempt to adjust the picture. We are controlling transmission", The Outer Limits pushed the boundaries of television and viewers minds by introducing a new caliber of science fiction.


From the moment Vic Perrin's omniscient "Control Voice" first proclaimed, "There is nothing wrong with your television set," on September 16, 1963, The Outer Limits was destined for greatness. The dazzling, long-beloved series was a daring experiment in "omnibus" TV, trading the speculative fantasies of The Twilight Zone for farther-out sci-fi concepts. Producers Leslie Stevens and Joseph Stefano had risen as gifted writers from (respectively) Broadway and Hollywood; Stevens rebounded from his previous canceled series, while Stefano had scripted Hitchcock's Psycho and was eager to expand his creative horizons. With an executive order for scary monsters and cold war thrills, their fruitful symbiosis was preceded by the superb Stevens-directed pilot "Please Stand By," named after the series' once-proposed title and changed to "The Galaxy Being" for its broadcast premiere.

Cliff Robertson launched an impressive succession of guest stars, and on meager, oft-exceeded budgets of $120,000 per episode, The Outer Limits became a showcase for shoestring ingenuity. The "blue ribbon crew" (as Stevens called it) included cinematographer Conrad Hall, whose Oscar®-winning skills were honed on the series' cramped TV-studio sets. Packed onto two double-sided DVDs, these 16 episodes (out of a total 49) comprise the series' dynamic first season of moody, frequently paranoid black-and-white adventures. Repeat performers Martin Landau, Robert Culp, and Sally Kellerman excel (respectively) in the fan-favorite episodes "The Man Who Was Never Born," and "The Architects of Fear" (and who can forget the insect-like menace of "The Zanti Misfits"?). There are a few clunkers, of course, but the series' quality (and parade of monsters) is remarkably consistent, and DVD compression does not compromise its technical achievement. These eerily seductive shows invite repeated viewing, supporting Stephen King's oft-quoted remark that The Outer Limits was "the best program of its type ever to run on network TV." --Jeff Shannon

Special Features

  • Disc 1 Side A:
  • Galaxy Being
  • Hundred Days of the Dragon
  • The Architects of Fear
  • The Man with the Power
  • Disc 1 Side B:
  • Sixth Finger
  • The Man Who Was Never Born
  • O.B.I.T.
  • Human Factor
  • Disc 2 Side A:
  • Corpus Earthling
  • Nightmare
  • It Crawled Out of the Woodwork
  • The Borderland
  • Disc 2 Side B:
  • Tourist Attraction
  • The Zanti Misfits
  • The Mice
  • Controlled Experiment

Product Details

  • Actors: Vic Perrin, Bob Johnson, Ben Wright, William Douglas, Robert Culp
  • Writers: Leslie Stevens
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: June 5, 2007
  • Run Time: 736 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (197 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #66,508 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Outer Limits: Volume 1" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
The first season of "The Outer Limits" was the best. Sure the second season had some classic episodes (among them "Solider" and "Demon with a Glass Hand" which inspired James Cameron to come up with "The Terminator". I'd give the shows here 5 stars but 0 stars to MGM for this reissue. Why? Because these are the exact same digital transfers as last time. They haven't been enhanced with any thing AND there are no extras. I'd average that out to 2 stars for this set.

Don't get me wrong--the first season was terrific for the most part. This set (like the first season set) features the moving "The Man Who Was Never Born" with Martin Landau as a scarred victim of a viral holocaust who is given the chance to go back in time and prevent the birth of the man who created his sterile world. Featuring a rich score by the late Domninic Frontiere (among his best), this was "The Outer Limits" as its best. Also we get "The Galaxy Being" with Cliff Roberson who unwittingly brings an alien creature he has been communicating with from a world made of anti-matter into ours causing destruction and death. David McCallum in "The Sixth Finger" about the results of an experiment to push humanity to evolve to the next level but how, in the process, we lose the essence of what makes us human.

"The Zanti Misfits" like much of Stefano's work provides a neat allegory about human nature. We also get "The Borderlands" and many other classic episodes mixed with claptrap like "Human Factor" but almost everything here is terrific even if we're only getting half a season at a higher price than before.

Why not include a commentary track from surviving actors or David J. Suchow the author on the definitive book on "The Outer Limits"?
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By A Customer on September 16, 2003
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
When I first saw the Outer Limits series, I was young enough that I'm sure much of the story line went directly into the subliminal mind. So when the DVD sets came out I wanted to review each episode to see exactly what was going into my subconscious mind at such an young and tender age. Much to my surprise I found my self highly challenged by both seasons. Having lived at least half a life time, I did not expect to find myself so challenged. Now I know how much dramatic media can indeed influence the subconscious mind.
In fact, if I had been a little bit older when I first watched the series, I think my life might have been different. I was too young at the time to really be able to hold onto the dramatic impact and theme of each episode. What truly amazes me is how much the story and theme carry the episode, and how minimal the special effects. This realization has made me rethink my whole experience with contemporary science fiction cinema. Once all the computer graphic, virtual reality special effects, all the senseless, sensationalistic violence and sex are stripped away, how much does contemporary science fiction really tell a story?
I can hardly think of any contemporary science fiction movie that can stand on the story line alone, without the aid of special effects. Yet the creators of Outer Limits were able to accomplish amazing dramatic effects with light and shadow, playhouse sets, and black and white photography. Better yet, with a constantly changing cast, the acting comes across far superior to so much of today's stock, formula performances by Hollywood stock performers. Today, make a science fiction and chances are that you've got to cast Kenau Reeves, Tom Kruse, or the Star Trek/Wars crew to even get into production.
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1 Comment 36 of 37 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
This "redundant" DVD re-release is absurd and unfair and doesn't do justice to the show. It's a disgrace and a real swindle that a major and "wealthy" Studio release a vintage show in two volumes. With today's technology, you could, at least, obtain a complete restoration from the original 35 mm prints. The first DVD release was cheaply cleaned up and featured no extras and worst: no language options. I advise all "Outer Limits" diehard fans to read a full account of the lowdown first DVD edition by getting this publication serving as an evidence for the future: "Video Watchdog", n° 89 and n° 102, November 2002 and December 2003, articles by "Outer Limits" expert David J. Schow. I reject this vulgar 2007 DVD edition that deserves to be dumped into the "Pit" (Cf. "It Crawled out of the Woodwork")! I believe that the right action from the Studio would be to re-release the entire season in one single set including:

- 32 restored copies

- the two "restored" alternate pilots ("Please Stand By" and "The Unknown")

- restored trailers and promos

- audio commentaries by expert David J. Schow

- interviews with "Outer Limits" cast and crew

- isolated scores

- languages options (dubbings and subtitles: English, Spanish, French)

"When this passion called aspiration becomes lust, then aspiration degenerates, becomes vulgar ambition, by which sin the angels fell."

--End Narration from "The Bellero Shield".
6 Comments 67 of 73 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
MGM splits the first season in half. You get 2 double sided discs, same format as the first release. No extras. I can only assume the episodes are NOT remastered. What is the point? True fans bought the first set. Casual fans will probably seek out their favorite episodes. What are the odds their favorites fall within the first 16 episodes?

This set makes no sense whatsoever. Without ANY additional attractions, I don't see why anyone would buy this.
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Topic From this Discussion
Let;'s get this straight!
No, they're the EXACT SAME flipper discs, just split up into two pieces so that instead of buying "Season 1" you have you buy "Season 1, Volume 1" and "Season 1, Volume 2."

The only difference is in the PACKAGING.
Aug 3, 2007 by ZTT Fan |  See all 3 posts
Still black and white. Still the same transfers. Still no extras. Another still born project.
Jun 21, 2007 by Wayne Klein |  See all 3 posts
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