Author Archives: Specto

The Avengers is A… Remake?

Thanks to YouTube user whoiseyevan, we can now enjoy the trailer for the original Avengers film, made in 1952… Which, oddly, is about a decade before the Avengers debuted. Oh well, enjoy – and check out his site for many more ‘Premakes’!

Plus, check out this video’s frame-by-frame breakdown!

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Finally!

This is the text of a news release from Time-Life:
“STEVE AUSTIN. ASTRONAUT. A MAN BARELY ALIVE. WE CAN REBUILD HIM.
WE HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY. WE HAVE THE CAPABILITY TO MAKE THE WORLD’S
FIRST BIONIC MAN. BETTER THAN HE WAS BEFORE.
BETTER…STRONGER…FASTER”

THIS FALL, TIME LIFE GIVES TV DVD FANS SIX MILLION
REASONS TO GET EXCITED WITH A CULT CLASSIC
NEVER BEFORE AVAILABLE ON ANY FORMAT!

THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN:
THE COMPLETE SERIES

Outfitted in a Muscular Completist’s Set Sporting Sound Effects and Limited Edition
Lenticular Graphics, the Spectacular 40-Disc Collection Will Feature All 100 Hour-Long
Episodes and More Than 15 Hours of Bonuses Including the Three TV Pilot Movies,
the Three Reunion Movies, the Bionic Woman Crossover Episodes and Much More

FAIRFAX, VA; July 22, 2010 — This Fall, Time Life – the home of such classic TV as GET SMART, THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E and THE SMOTHERS BROTHERS – will give TV DVD aficionados, cult classic completists and genre fans six million reasons to get excited about one of the most eagerly anticipated and buzzed about home entertainment releases in years with THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN: THE COMPLETE SERIES. The set, which will initially be available exclusively online at a specially branded site, will be released in November 2010 and feature all five action-packed seasons of the futuristic, fan-favorite adventure series never before available in the U.S. on any format!

Although the collection will not be bionically-enhanced, the singular set – the 4th most requested unreleased show at TVShowsonDVD.com – is certain to thrill fans both old and new. Across the 40-disc configuration, housed in a box sporting an audio chip and eye-popping lenticular images, Time Life proudly presents the series in its entirety with all 100 digitally-preserved and re-mastered hour-long episodes. Also included will be the three pilot movies (“The Six Million Dollar Man“, “Wine, Women and War“, “Solid Gold Kidnapping“), the three made-for-TV reunion movies (“The Return of the Six Million Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman“, “Bionic Showdown” and “Bionic Ever After?“), the never-before-released cross-over episodes with The Bionic Woman and more than eight additional hours of never-before-seen bonus programming, with all-new cast and crew interviews, featurettes and docs featuring – among others – Lee Majors and Richard Anderson (“Oscar Goldman”) and much more.

One of the pop culture smashes of the ’70s, THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN starred Lee Majors as Colonel Steve Austin, a top NASA pilot critically injured when his experimental spaceplane crashed. Oscar Goldman (Richard Anderson), head of the OSI, used Austin as a test subject for an experimental procedure, rebuilding his body using cybernetic technology, making him the world’s first bionic man. Now, Austin works for Goldman and the OSI, protecting the nation from a myriad of threats. Based on the novel “Cyborg” by Martin Caidin, THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN launched with several made-for-TV movies in 1973, which then spun off into a hit for ABC, running from January 1974 to March 1978. During its run, the program made Majors a pop culture icon, spawned three reunion shows, another series (The Bionic Woman, starring Lindsay Wagner) and thousands of licensed products, making THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN one of the defining TV shows of the “Me” decade.

“As the show that introduced me to TV audiences the world over, I have a fond place in my heart for The Six Million Dollar Man,” says Lee Majors. “And over the past several years, the one question I get asked most is ‘when will it be available on DVD?’ So, I’m truly excited to be involved in bringing the series to a new generation of fans.”

“We couldn’t be more excited to have the opportunity to deliver such a long-awaited classic to DVD for the first time,” says Jeff Peisch, head of Time Life’s video division. “We have a long history of reverential treatment towards the packaging of cult classic TV and we now have the technology and capability to build a better DVD set. Better…stronger…faster. Actually, we’re pulling out all the stops for The Six Million Dollar Man, making sure that it’s both a completist’s dream set and the perfect DVD homage to an unreleased classic.”

The Six Million Dollar Man is a copyright and trademark of Universal Studios, and used under license.

I’m sure I’m not alone in saying ABOUT BLOODY TIME!!

Ah, my childhood… Will it never end? I hope not. 🙂

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Filed under 1970s, Epic Awesomeness, Sci-Fi, Television

The Top Ten TV Theme Songs of the ’60s (According to Flash)

Good day, friends, my apologies for being away so long, but a combination of too much work and too little downtime has kept me away for a little while. Nevertheless, I have been planning this post for a while (which was inspired by our good freind Pie), and I thought now’s as good a time as any.

Before I begin, I will point out that this is my list, and is not intended to be definitive – in fact, I’d love to hear other people’s ideas for top TV themes. Having thus hopefully de-fanned the fires of a possible flame war, and set the stage for collegial and fun discussion, let’s now get to the list, in no particular order other than starting with the best cartoon themes ever:

1.) Underdog (1964)

I wanted to start with this for one reason, and one reason only (besides the fact that it is awesome): to get the admission out of the way that this theme scared the bejeezus out of me when I was a kid. As with many things, I had to be an adult to truly appreciate it.

2) Spider-Man (1967)

What more can I say about this one – everyone knows and loves Spidey, doing whatever a spider pig does can:

Acyually, I can say one more thing: note that when Spidey looks out the window onto the street, he looks at the front of the store which is selling “Fine Jewlery”; when he swings down, the sign says “Fine Jewelry”. A side effect of having animation done in Canada?

3) I Spy (1965)

As I mentioned in my post on Robert Culp, this one is a no-brainer:

4) Peter Gunn (1958)

Ok, technically, this one isn’t from the 1960’s; on the other hand, the show lasted into the early years of that decade. No matter: private eye + Henri Mancini = EPIC:

5) Doctor Who (1963)

This video mixes all versions of the very disctinctive Ron Granier theme up to the David Tennant version:

I particularly like the Tom Baker and Tennant versions. For comparison, this is the new version from the new Season 5, with Matt Smith as the new Doctor:

6) Batman (1966)

Ok, you all know this one, right? I can’t think of this one without thinking of my neighbor’s son, who used to sing this with great gusto, except he used the phrase “That Man” – slightly more generic version, but cool nontheless. This is the longer version rather than the one featured on the series, accompanied by some additional music:

7) Danger Man (1964)

No, not “Secret Agent Man” – that sucked. This is the original British version of the theme song from Danger Man, along with some interesting bits from an episode. I gotta say – love the harpsichord!!:

8 ) The Prisoner (1968)

Both our second Patrick McGoohan-related and Ron Granier composed theme (and yes, it should have been Number 6):

9) The Man From U.N.C.L.E. (1964)

The Season 1 version is by far my favorite, but I do like the Season 2 version as well – Seasons 3 and 4 seem to be leeching off Batman a little too much for my tastes:

10) Land of the Giants (Season 2 – 1969)

The themes from the only two seasons of Land of the Giants are quite different (as readers will know from an earlier post of mine), but I have to say I prefer the Season 2 theme, written, as were many of Irwin Allen’s themes, by Johnny Williams, who later would compose the theme for “Jaws” and “Star Wars”, among other well-known iconic musical themes. Enjoy!

Well, that’s it for the moment – let’s hear your ideas for the next 10, or for the themes from the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s and beyond!

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Filed under 1960s, Cartoons, Detective Stories, Epic Awesomeness, Music, Sci-Fi, Spy Games, superheroes, Television, Videos, YouTube

Robert Culp – R.I.P.

Robert Culp, star of the TV classic I Spy, has died at the age of 79.  To say he was merely brilliant would be an understatement. Besides I Spy, he also starred as gung-ho FBI agent Bill Maxwell in The Greatest American Hero in the early ’80s.

In honor of a brilliant actor, I give you the themes from I Spy, which I consider to be one of the best ever written for TV, and The Greatest American Hero, which, despite the risk of ridicule, I quite like also…

For me, one of his most enjoyable performances was as Trent, the immortal warrior in the Outer Limits episode, “Demon With A Glass Hand”, written by Harlan Ellison. Truly one of the finest pieces of sci-fi ever presented on television, IMHO.

And, of course, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention another absolute classic Outer Limits episode, “The Architects of Fear” – if you are at all a fan of Watchmen, you owe it to yourself to watch this one…

A sad farewell to a true master of his craft, and a role model for ‘cool’…

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Can Someone Please Tell Me…

… Exactly why I find this so GODDAMNED FUNNY??

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Mission: Accomplished

Peter Graves, best known as Jim Phelps in the long running Mission: Impossible TV series, died on Sunday of a heart attack at the age of 83.

And no, he had never seen a grown man naked.

Probably best known to younger (?) viewers as Captain Clarence Oveur from the Airplane! films, Graves had a long history in the movies, including at least two ’50s sci-fi flicks that were ‘riffed’ by the robots on Mystery Science Theater 3000.

Beginning of the End (1957):

Part 1 of It Conquered the World (1956),  perhaps best remembered now for the immortal “Man is a feeling creature…” speech:

Fun Peter Graves Facts:

  • His older brother was James Arness, aka Marshall Matt Dillon from Gunsmoke.
  • Jim Phelps was not the first leader of the Impossible Missions Force – the IMF was led at first by Dan Briggs, played by Steven Hill, who later went on to play District Attorney Adam Schiff on Law and Order from 1990-2000. Graves took over as leader of the IMF at the beginning of Season 2.

This blog post will self-destruct in five seconds.

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A Bit of the Old Ultraviolence…

From an absolutely brilliant but little-seen or discussed movie, Equilibrium. Christian Bale kicks everyone’s ass. And keeps his language clean, which is also quite impressive, at least for him:

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