Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lazy Post - Intros of swiftly canceled 80's Sci-Fi shows

Here's the explanation/ origin story for TV's Automan.

When you think about all the work WB put into making Green Lantern's costume work in the movie, it all seems sort of silly. This looks just as good, really.

Here's the intro to a weekly episode.

I was never that into The Powers of Matthew Star, but it makes a strong argument for scale models versus CGI with that opening bit. Curiously, the show starred Louis Gossett Jr.

even more curiously, it's basically the same plot as the JJ Abrams script for a Superman movie.

However, I was into this show: The Phoenix, but I think it ran, like, two episodes. And it seems like Geoff Johns' Hawkman run may have lifted a bit from this show...

Streethawk was basically a guy with a really nice motorcycle and heavy synth backing music. The motorcycle wasn't equipped with a robot voice or anything. It was hard to see the point.

I know we have at least two Mistfits of Science fans in the audience.

And you don't do a rundown of intros to short-lived, hour-long 80's sci-fi dramas without showing Manimal.

And here's an extra bonus! MIGHTY ORBOTS!

You know, I'm suddenly very unimpressed that their decision was "The two girls? Just color them different. Girls are all the same, into hair and make-up or whatever. Guys are tough, wimpy or fat. So we'll do that for our guy robots."

Unlike, say, Lost, I like that its episodic.  This was an era when they knew sometimes you just had something else to do, and you might miss an episode or two.  Or, you might not catch the previous 14 episodes, so when you stumbled into the show, the opening told you everything you needed to know.  Possibly in song.

But a lot of my aversion to recommended shows is that I know I have to watch every single episode, and once a show is, basically, more than four episodes in, you can count me out.  I don't give up 15-22 hours to catch up with a show so I can watch the second season where it finally gets good.

Maybe this is why I find myself watching Monk.  Now there's a show that I couldn't even tell you anybody's name but "Monk" and, maybe "Chief", but I always know what's going on.


Maxo said...

I remember really enjoying "Misfits of Science!" I think I liked the idea that the powers were also a burden — didn't the electrical guy have to let loose every now and then or blow up?

And, of course, it featured Alf's dad.

Simon MacDonald said...

I had completely forgotten all about Automan until I read this post. IIRC he had to solve the crime before morning hit as he pulled some much energy from the power grid that he would fade away when folks woke up and turned on their coffee makers.

I remember being really disappointed with Street Hawk. It was a Knight Rider rip off without a cool talking motorbike.

I'm surprised Manimal hasn't make a comeback. I believe the reason it was canceled was due to high production costs and not low ratings. Someone at NBC should get on that.

The League said...

They're one step ahead of you, Simon.


Simon MacDonald said...

Oh wow, they are even thinking about bringing back Alf.

J.S. said...

I don't remember watching all that much TV, but somehow I remember all of these shows...

The League said...

I think in the 1979-1984 timeframe we watched TV on Fridays and sometimes on Saturdays, and I think that's when these shows aired. I still don't really know what people are talking about when they discuss shows that aired on week nights like The Cosby Show and I only watched Cheers because it went into syndication.

Jake Shore said...

Don't remember any of these except Manimal. Maybe because I was too busy watching this:


Jake Shore said...

And this...


The League said...

we were big, big fans of Voyagers at my house, and I meant to include it in the post, but I got tired and forget. Sadly, that wasn't so much canceled as shut down after a tragic accident (but still should have been included).

Tales of the Gold Monkey was a crazy-mad gamble, and I'm sad it didn't do better. I do remember watching it, but I confess I don't recall exactly what it was about.