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The Outer Limits - The Original Series, Season 2

4.0 out of 5 stars 214 customer reviews

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(Sep 02, 2003)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

You hold in your hands an artifact from a time now vanished forever – a compendium of portals into worlds unknown. A three-disc set that controls over 14 hours of transmission from the 1964-65 series, this vessel has sought you out for one specific purpose: to expand your mind to "The Outer Limits"!

Despite forced changes in executive and creative personnel, plummeting ratings and the constant threat of cancellation, the truncated second season of The Outer Limits (1964-65) yielded some of the series' finest episodes. While The Twilight Zone was fading fast on CBS, the bean-counters at ABC used focus groups and ratings statistics to enforce their previous mandate for a "monster of the week" format for their flagging science-fiction series, and after a few promising episodes early in the season, Outer Limits settled into a regrettable routine of reduced budgets and rubber-suit creatures that wouldn't pass inspection at a drunken Halloween party. A former network executive with minimal creative input, Perry Mason producer Ben Brady struggled to keep the doomed series alive while coproducer Seeleg Lester sought legitimacy by courting respected writers and material.

As Harlan Ellison observes in David J. Schow's indispensable book The Outer Limits Companion, weak ratings allowed quality episodes to slip under the radar of ABC executives. Ellison's own classic teleplays--"Soldier" (which would later inspire The Terminator and subsequent legal squabbles) and "Demon with a Glass Hand"--yielded the season's finest stand-alone episodes, while the two-part "The Inheritors" (featuring the young Robert Duvall) fulfilled the series' neglected potential for longer-form plotlines. While these highlights redeem the season, "Wolf 359" (a title that would later factor in Star Trek: The Next Generation) is eerily effective despite low-tech restrictions, and "Behold Eck!" is the "best" (relatively speaking) of the tepid monster-themed shows that ABC demanded. It wasn't enough: After 17 episodes against the Saturday-night dominance of The Jackie Gleason Show, the greatest science-fiction anthology series of the 1960s was mercifully canceled, primed for phenomenal success in syndication and eventual revival as the "new" Outer Limits in 1995. --Jeff Shannon

Special Features

  • 17 original episodes on three double-sided discs: Soldier, Cold Hands Warm Heart, Behold Eck!, Expanding Human, Demon with a Glass Hand, Cry of Silence, The Invisible Enemy, Wolf 359, I Robot, The Inheritors Pt. 1, The Inheritors Pt. 2, Keeper of the Purple Twilight, The Duplicate Man, Counterweight, The Brain of Colonel Barham, The Premonition, The Probe

Product Details

  • Actors: Dewey Martin, Mary Murphy, Emma Tyson, William Bramley, Coby Denton
  • Directors: Byron Haskin, Charles F. Haas, Felix E. Feist, Gerd Oswald, James Goldstone
  • Format: Box set, Black & White, Closed-captioned, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: September 2, 2003
  • Run Time: 870 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (214 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009Y3RE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #105,292 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Outer Limits - The Original Series, Season 2" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Wayne Klein HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 4, 2007
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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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 68 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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