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Customer Review

28 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An entertaining series "Space: 1999" receives a beautiful Blu-ray transfer, November 30, 2010
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This review is from: Space: 1999: Season 1 [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Who knew bell bottoms would still be in fashion in 1999?

The Blu-ray edition of the first season of "Space:1999" looks marvelous revealing details that were only hinted at on the DVD's released in the U.S. (which were pulled from 16mm prints)in these digitally restored and cleaned up episodes pulled from the original 35mm negatives. The show looks marvelous very much comparable to the marked improvement that we saw with "Star Trek" when it was remastered for Blu-ray and the last round of DVDs (although both shows because they were shot in different decades look different).

FYI, I did note a glitch on the second episode of the series towards the conclusion where there's a digital "skip"--I'm not sure if it was just on my edition or if it is a problem with the entire set due to some sort of manufacturing or encoding error. Strange though it may seem A&E elected not to include SDH captions. I would think they would realize that the audience for the show is skewed older than others and it might be useful to have these. Let's hope that A&E realizes the error of their ways and corrects this by adding closed captioning because i for one would appreciate it.

A&E's release uses the same digital masters for this set and while this set doesn't include all of the original special features from the UK network release of the series, it does have the bulk of the special features carried over and but does contain two new commentary tracks on "Breakaway" and "Dragon's Domain".

The only things missing from this set compared to the UK set are the 19 script pdf files.

The premise--As the Earth plans its first major intergalatic flight to the planet Meta, there are strange things occurring on Moonbase Alpha. The astronauts including those training for the Meta mission are becoming ill. Commander Koenig (Martin Landau) arrives on Alpha to get the Meta mission back on track. Dr Helena Russell (Barbara Bain who seems as if she has had botox injected in her entire face)theorizes that some sort of radiation from the silos storing atomic waste is somehow damaging the brains of the astronauts but tests run by Professor Victor Bergman (the late Barry Morse best known prior to this for "The Fugitive")indicate that radiation levels on the far side of the moon are normal. Koenig and his crew are pressured by Commissioner Simmonds to get the Meta ship launched. A magnetic storm generated by the atomic waste causes the Moon to be blown out of Earth orbit on an accelerating course out of the solar system forcing the Alpha crew to rely on each other as they make their way into the void.

Originally planned as the next season of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson's "UFO" where the aliens tried to destroy Earth's moonbase by blowing the Moon out orbit, "Space: 1999" featured handsome production designs, top notch visual effects and production values and while the writing was flawed (and as been noted the "science" of the show could be silly)the show featured a top notch group of guest stars (Roy Dotrice, Christopher Lee ("Horror of Dracula", "The Lord of the Rings"), Brian Blessed ("I Claudius")among others)and some terrific lead actors (Martin Landau ("Mission:Impossible" the TV series, "North by Northwest" and an Oscar nominee for "Crimes and Misdemeanors" and winner for "Ed Wood") and Barry Morse)that along with the direction helped carry the show through despite the flawed writing on the show. "Space: 1999" is still entertaining due to the top notch production designs and the performances of most of the cast.

I much prefer the first season to the second season which lacked the sense of wonder that dominated the first season. Supervised by producer Fred Freiberger ("The Wild Wild West", the third and final season of "Star Trek")the second season moved the series in more of an action direction. One of the few things that Freiberger brought to the table was his character Maya (Catherine Schell)a metamorph who could change into any creature and became part of the Alpha crew.

This set is definitely worth upgrading for long time fans of the show as the image quality is dramatically improved.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 2, 2010 3:30:41 PM PST
The episode the metamorph from season 2 is indeed included in this set as an extra on disc 5.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 2, 2010 5:36:44 PM PST
Wayne Klein says:
Thanks James--I haven't worked my whole way through the set yet (I'm on disc 3 but did watch the extras as well which are quite good!)

Posted on Mar 8, 2013 7:38:48 AM PST
A&E would just as soon piss on the hearing impaired as bother to provide subtitles. Sorry; my frustration comes from nearly 20 years of dealing with the company and their home video releases, and their outright lack of any respect for those of us who need subtitles to view a program. To sum up my experience; A&E basically told me that it's not worth the expense of adding a subtitle track (because their buyer's don't really need them), and since they weren't required to include them they weren't going to (I was actually told these things).

Do yourself a favor and bypass this set altogether and order the UK release version on Blu-ray from Amazon UK. I bought it late last year and was elated to discover it plays fine on my PlayStation 3. Great picture, terrific sound, and SDH.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 10:20:59 PM PDT
Monkeyshines says:
Well, I already have the set so I'll stick with it but it wouldn't have really aded all that much expense. They could have just ported over the subtitles for the other set.
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Review Details

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Wayne Klein
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   

Location: My Little Blue Window, USA

Top Reviewer Ranking: 179