43 of 48 people found the following review helpful
Captain Power, Sci-Fi's Most Misunderstood Gem!,
This review is from: Captain Power-Complete Series (DVD)
First things first, lets get the most important point out of the way. Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future was NOT a childrens program. The producers never entended nor claimed otherwise. Unfortunately, like all sci-fi/genre TV programming of the '80's, it was treated as one no matter the content. In all fairness, having a title like "Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future," being bankrolled mostly by money from Mattel, and being saddled with a Saturday AM timeslot in most markets didn't help the situation.
Having said that, if your looking at this as some kind of prehistoric "Power Rangers" for the kids, look elsewhere. Though more than tame by todays family viewing standards, it's important to note their is blood, violence, character death, four-letter language, and even some implied sex. I'm not saying this is sci-fi Sopranos here, but it is very much a product of the syndication market of the time.
Now if your looking for an engrossing series with a backstory that brings to mind the works of Asimov and Ellison, with a writing staff including the legendary J. Michael Straczynski (listen for a clever reference to Straczynski's Babylon 5), and Larry DiTillio you're in the right place.
There are also stellar performances by a predominately Canadian cast of (then)relative unknowns including Tim Dunigan (who originated the role of Timpleton "Faceman" Peck in the pilot of the legendary "A-Team" television series) as Captain Jonathan Power, 19 year-old Jessica Steen (years before Armageddon and Earth-2) as the tragic Jennifer "Pilot" Chase, and Sven Thorsen (close friend, fellow body-builder and frequent collaborator with Arnold Schwarzenegger) as Michael "Tank" Ellis, a genetically engineered killing-machine who has abandoned his violent past for a life of peace.
Great cast, great writers, great story. In my opinion, some of the best science-fiction to come out of the late 80's.
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 9, 2011 5:22:25 PM PST
It most certainly was a children's program, most notably due to the fact of the children's toy line that was made to go along with the series and in which you would use the toys while you watched the show.
In reply to an earlier post on Dec 11, 2011 7:12:39 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 11, 2011 7:14:02 PM PST
Paul Polpiboon says:
Yes, it definitely was a children's program, and it was one that was for adults as well which is a very challenging thing to do. How do you get Adults to get back in touch with their childhood. What it comes down to is when something is for kids and those adults it is therefore for family. So Walt Disney's stuff is definitely family, as is Star Wars and Superman the Movie. Those remain the eternal classics because of what I just said: Something that is suitable for young small kids and for adults as well is an extremely challenging thing to do.
Those that have accomplished this extreme challenge (SupermanTheMovie,Disney,StarWars) have accomplished immortality.
Posted on Dec 12, 2011 10:17:49 AM PST
Michael R. Powell says:
Did you even watch this show when it originally aired? I understand that the producers may not have intended it as a kid's show when the idea was first being pitched, but as someone else pointed out, this was essentially a 30-minute commercial for the toys just like the G.I. JOE cartoon. Actually, it was much MORE than a commercial for the toys, since they interacted with the show. So, regardless of the original intent, this WAS a children's program.
The other thing I can't believe you wrote is that there was somehow a "clever reference" to Babylon 5 in this show... HOW??? This show premiered over 5 years before Babylon 5! I'm not even sure what you're referring to, but it would just be some dialogue, setting or circumstance re-used by Straczynski for B5... there's no possible way this show could have "referenced" one that didn't hit the air until 1993.
As legions of sports fans said to Ashton Kutcher... maybe you should get your facts straight before shooting your mouth off.
In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 12:05:28 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 18, 2011 1:29:48 AM PST
JMS already had the basic concept of Babylon 5 in mind when he worked on this show. In episode 4, "Last Stand" Tank makes reference to "escaping from Babylon 5." Clearly this wasn't the space station we all know, instead being a reference to a super soldier facility that created Tank, but still a nice little name-only reference for sharp eared fans. And a clear indication that JMS was already forming the idea at the time.
In fact, JMS even says in the extras that he took the opportunity with Captain Power to try out the idea of a multi-season story arc to see if it would work. In many ways, his work on Captain Power laid the groundwork for what he would later accomplish with Babylon 5. The name reference was obviously not a coincidence.
UPDATE: Here you go. From the man himself: http://geekout.blogs.cnn.com/2011/12/12/h
In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 9:07:42 AM PST
Michael R. Powell says:
Okay, then... I'm just saying that it couldn't have been a "nod" to a show that didn't exist yet. A hint at what was to come, sure. I just wanted to make sure this wasn't some youngster posting something along the lines of "Hey, isn't it cool that they brought R2-D2 and C3PO back for the low-budget sequels to Eps. 1-3?"
Posted on Mar 26, 2012 2:18:11 AM PDT
Alex Panz says:
Does anyone have any information about the region code?
Ist it code free or code 1?
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 14, 2012 10:37:10 AM PDT
Art Pickens Jr. says:
There WAS a reference to Babylon 5 on Captain Power. Something to the effect of Tank Ellis saying that he had been stationed on Babylon 5. At this point, it's more than possible that J Mike had the seeds of B5 already in his mind. No one claimed that there was a CROSSOVER with B5, but there was most definitely a reference. I remember this even though I haven't watched the good Captain in about 25 years.
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