Friday, 22 March 2013

Laverne & Shirley - Lost in Spacesuits (1982)

From season 8 (blimey) of the long running American comedy series; Laverne &Shirley.  This episode sees Laverne at the mercy of an anti-gravity (space) suit.
Farley certain that is the same space helmet as worn by Star Wars IV's Dans Borin in 1977, having started life in Men into Space 1959, The Phantom Planet 1961. 


Thursday, 21 March 2013

The Phantom Planet (1961)

A mysterious planet, miniature people, giant monsters, beautiful women and all set in outer space with an undaunted hero doing his darnedest to sort it all out.  B-Movie gold, me thinks or if you were born a little later, memorable Saturday morning cinema.

Of interest to the Trivianaut in me; this film appears to be using the same space helmets as were first featured in the 1959 TV series; Men into Space (Same back-packs too)  In 1977 one of these helmets would appear in the Mos Eisley Cantine in Star Wars IV.  I'm guessing it features in a few other places in between and we'll see if we can follow its journey.


Men Into Space (1959)

I know very little about this American TV show except it ran for 38 episodes from 1959 to 1960 and was about men in space.  I don't think we got it over her on this side of the pond but the little I've read online make it sound quite interesting for its time.
Enjoy the rest of the gallery and then contemplate if this is the same space helmet as worn by Danz Borin in Star Wars IV

And this is Star Wars' Danz Borin...
So what do we think?

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Star Wars: A New Hope - Part 2 - (1977)

Lets look back at Star Wars IV (The first one)  I keep trying to re-watch it to capture a little of the excitement I once felt about it as a kid but it's just not there anymore. I find this very odd because I watch all sorts of other old stuff from back then and get right into it again but not this.  ?
Ah well!

Anyway lets look at the few remaining spacesuits on view in the cantina scene.
As well as Bo Shek in his black Windak, which we looked at ages ago, there are a few others.

Unfortunately it's hard to get really good images of them so we'll just have to settle for these.
There are three spacesuited characters in this background scene.  Some of them may well have inherited character names in the intervening years but clearly at the time they were just there to make the place look sufficiently sci-fi.  And they were there to do it within a budget as well which is why they are all existing suits and helmets.  What we have to do now is identify them...well we don't have to but it's a fun game to play.

lets do the easy one first.
That's the yellow Windak, the twin of Bo Shek's black one.  The two suits have had something of a career but their most famous previous appearance will be in the 1964 film; The First Men in the Moon.
Sitting next to him is Danz Borin who's suit has that distinctive black patch that suggests it's from the same place as Duros (?) Ellors (?), the blue skinned, red eye'd chap below.  The helmet is from somewhere else and I know I've seen it before but I just can't place it.  If anybody wants to chip in with an idea or two, feel free to post a comment. I thought it would come to me but it's not happening.
Not sure about the silver suit above. It's been suggested elsewhere that it's from the TV series Lost In Space but I can't be sure.  The helmet however is from Escape from the Planet of the Apes, 1971 and has also done the rounds in a series of film and TV shows prior to this. 
This image, if you've the eyes of a hawk and look into the top left hand side seems to suggest that there might have been two of these identically clad spacemen, both with their back to us while talking to Borin.  Mr yellow Windack, is sitting down by this point, on the very edge of the picture trying to pull some space floozie
And that white suit there, identical to Borin's above, is one of the actual spacesuits from the 3rd of the Ape movies although like the helmet it started life in the early 60's, featuring in a number of films and TV shows.  It used to be a classic silver colour too, like the Gemini suits.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Quatermass II (1955)

The first of the TV sequels which was also remade as a movie by Hammer Films.  When they did that they didn't include this particular scene, preferring instead to keep Bernard Quatermass earthbound.


The Quatermass Experiment (1953)

There is so much one could write about Professor Bernard Quatermass, his various adventures, and their creator and author; the later, great Nigel Kneale.... but not here.  We shall limit ourselves instead to looking at the spacesuits.
These images are from the BBC's original series, first broadcast in 1953.  Three men went up into orbit and only one returns.
Creepy, intelligent stuff well worth a Hammer film remake as well as any number of sequels.


Friday, 1 March 2013

Moon Zero Two (1969) - The Other Spacesuits

Here they are; the other spacesuits used in the 1969 film, Moon Zero Two.  I've blogged a lot about the main spacesuits, you know, the really cool ones.  These however are not they.
There's still plenty to like about them I suppose; The bright colours, their rubbery fetish look - if you like that kind of thing - and the fact that they allow the actors the freedom to have a proper on the moon punch up and shoot out. - which is probably why they switched design for this section of the story.  Enjoy the rest of the pretty pictures.