Upcoming junk and stuff

Ah, 1970’s sci-fi shows. Back when special effects were cheap, the future wasn’t always that bright, uniforms were tacky but it was all pretty cool. For the month of June it will be 70’s sci-fi show month. Hope to review episodes of the above shows and more. Plus there will be a few lists, Skeletor will be by with a 70’s sci-fi version of his column and a 70’s video game write-up.

Take care!

So long, Buck Kartalian

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Long time character actor Buck Kartalian died the other day at the age of 93. He had over 75 credits and had a career that spanned over six decades. He didn’t get into acting until his 30’s and had spent time as a bodybuilder and pro-wrestler before that. He is perhaps best know for his rule as the grumpy jailer gorilla Julius in the original The planet of the apes film. He was back in ape make-up a few years as Frank another gorilla in Conquest of the planet of the apes. He had parts in Cool Hand Luke, The outlaw Josey Wales and in was  a number of shows from Get Smart to Just shoot me!. However for me he will always be Bruce W. Wolf from the oh too short lived 1970’s Saturday Morning show The Monster Squad. He was a small guy and five foot three, but he had a great gruff voice, beady eyes and a very distinctive nose. A very solid character actor indeed.

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Batman-True or false face/Holy Rat Race

1966

Master of disguise False Face is up to no good. He manages to steal a crown. Later he is disguised as an armored car driver, but keen eyed Batman spots him for who he is, but he escapes in his trick truck. False escapes again disguising himself as that boob Chief O’Hara. The Dynamic Duo later think they will get him, but instead get lured into being glued to railroad tracks. Fortunately Alfred sends a circuit thingie over to Batman causing his radio to go boom and melt the cement so they can escape before being run over by the train. False Face goes to rob a bank, but the heroes lay in wait for him. The baddie and his girl Blaze run and end up at a movie studio. False Face discovers that Blaze likes Batman and had helped him ruin his evil plans. So he uses her as a shield to try and escape through the old west sets. Eventually Batman sees through his disguises and ends his reign of masquerading terror.

These two episodes were the only in the series to have False Face. A shame because I think he was a very good villain. I loved the angles, the weird reveals and character actor Malachi Throne had a great voice and pulled it off. I tossed a picture in below of him from Star Trek so you can see what he really looked like. If you are a fan of 60’s and 70’s TV you have likely seen him in lots of things.

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Batman-Hi diddle riddle and Smack in the middle

1966

Explosions and cornball riddles put the dynamic duo on the tail of the Riddler which is of course what the fiend wants as he lures  them into to abusing him over something that’s not a crime. Batman and Robin try hard to figure out the Riddler’s real devious plot by answering a series of riddles that make sense to them but not to any of us viewers. The trail eventually leads Batman to a disco, but Robin being a minor he can’t go in. While there Batman gets lures in by a woman (Molly) to an extent, he dances and then he drinks drugged orange juice. This leads to Robin being captured. The Riddler makes a Robin mask from the original. Molly uses it to fool Batman to take her to the Batcave. While there Bats of course spots a flaw in the mask and Molly is revealed. She tries to escape but falls into the crap that’s used to power the Batmobile and she dies. Batman gets the real Robin back and they realize the Riddler is tyring to steal some priceless stamps. The Dynamic duo are ready for him and his goons.  A fight breaks out, but the Riddler escapes to riddle them another day.

The first two episodes of the series set the campy yet fun tone for the first season. Two very strong episodes and Frank Gorshin is great as the  Riddler.

So long, Alan Young

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Alan Young passed away last week at 96. He was of course most known as Wilbur Post on Mr. Ed. Sci-fi fans will know him for his role as David/ James Filby in 1960’s The time machine and he had a came decades later in the 2001 version of The time machine. From the 1970’s through until recently he did quite a bit of voice actin in cartoon and video games. He did Scrooge McDuck’s voice fro Disney for several decades. He was obviously good with his voices as well as his comic timing. A solid performer who will be missed by horses and people alike.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wonder Woman meets Gargantua

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1976

First season Wonder Woman so that of course meets Nazis. This time a Nazi agent named Erica who studies animals is brought to condition and control an ape named Gargantua to go and recapture a defecting agent. However Wonder Woman soon becomes a problem so Erica trains Gargantua to go after Wonder Woman with hatred in his eyes. She even dresses up like our hero to test the big ape. Of course the Big G and WW collide in a clash of the limited TV budget characters. Wonder Woman manages to calm the big guy down and once again end the nasty Nazi plot. Ewww take that!.

The negatives-Another fairly bad and laughable plot.

The positives-A decent pace helps. The supporting cast helps as and this includes big man Micky Morton (Star Trek’s Gamesters of Triskellion and lost of other roles from the late 50’s to the early 90’s) as Gargantua, John Hillerman (Higgins from Magnum PI), the late Robert Loggia (Scarface, Big and tons of other roles) and Gretchen Corbett (Beth Davenport on The Rockford Files) as Erica.

Wonder Woman-The pied piper

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1977

Science fiction and music rarely mix in television and movie. My opinion, but here’s on that supports that. Wonder Woman/Diana Prince gets pulled into a scheme by a well known musician to get more money. Okay, sounds alright to far. Martin Mull (Roseanne, Sabrina-the teenage witch and tons of other stuff) plays an Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull type. Uh you are starting to lose me. He uses his flute to mesmerize people and then steal a bunch on money from the concert hall. Whoa, there that sounds like a whacked out cheapo cartoon plot. Oh yeah and he is using Eve Plumb (Jan Brady) until Wonder Woman shows up to set things right. Oh, Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman! If you didn’t get that one then you have not watched enough Brady Bunch. The pied piper gets some slack because agents and such did take advantage of him at some point and he does love his music and fans. There is also tons of stock concert fan footage, bad music and more unbelievable stuff going on throughout.

The positives-Good to see Martin Mull and Eve Plumb, but wish they had gotten better parts. Lynda Carter as always tried hard.

The negatives- Mull being miscast as a rock star. Most of the plot is lame-o.

Not the best episode at all, but memorable for how silly it is and the guest stars.

 

Upcoming junk and stuff

Lots of stuff to talk about. All of the above were in my recent thoughts and I am going to talk briefly about each right now. Earlier this week we lost William Schallert an absolutely wonderful character for decades. Sci-fi fans likely know him for his role on the “Trouble with tribbles” episode of Star Trek, but he was Patty Duke’s dad on her show, Nancy Drew’s dad on the 70’s Hard boys/Nancy Drew show and in lots of other shows and movies. Beyond Trek his appearances in episodes of the Andy Griffith show, Wild wild west and the Partridge Family all come to my mind right away as real memorable roles he had. I also saw Deadpool on DVD the other day. While I am not normally a fan of Ryan Reynolds he totally nailed this role. The film company obviously stepped back and let the people with the film make what they wanted and the result was a real gem that does justice to the character and the spirit of the comic. To be honest other films this year will have to be pretty great for Deadpool not to be my favorite film of the year.

I will have one more Greatest American Hero post up tomorrow to round out the week. Next week it’s on to Batman 1966 and reviews of several episodes and maybe something in general about the show.

Take care!