Thursday, 26 December 2013

The Sky at Night (1968)

A fantastic picture from the long running BBC TV Astronomy show; The Sky at Night (1957 to present).  Here is presenter Sir Patrick Moore with comedian Michael Bentine wearing spacesuits to discuss the trials of manned space flight.  While being something of a British institution due to longevity and familiarity, rather than actual viewing figures per show, The Sky at Night remains something of a dry presentation of a serious scientific subject.  What this image suggests is that perhaps not every episode has always been such.

Happy Christmas for yesterday

Monday, 23 December 2013

Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979) Alternative suits

Images from a deleted scene using alternative suit design.  I think I prefer these to the ones they went with but each to his own.


Sunday, 22 December 2013

Behind the Scenes - Alien (1979)



Farscape - Unrealized Reality (2002)

Talking about shows that were under appreciated and cancelled before their story was fully told,  I can think of no greater an example than Farscape.
Cut short by a single season and then given just three hours to wrap up the outstanding storyline is better than some shows get but Farscape was at its very best when it had time to play and because of this the end feels a little short changed.
Amazing story, characters, acting, design, effects, drama, comedy, sexiness, villainy, heroism and pure bloody inventiveness. Farscape had it all without a single duff episode....I'm very biased.
Anyway it also had space suits and this one is from Season 4, episode 11.  Enjoy.  We'll be back this way again.
I'm not sure if this last one is from the same episode but it's certainly the same suit and the best view of it.


The Starlost (1973)

The Starlost was a sci-fi television series devised by writer Harlan Ellison and broadcast in 1973 on CTV in Canada and syndicated to local stations in the United States.  I'm reasonably certain it never saw the light of day on this side of the Atlantic although with so many regional channels back then I stand to be corrected if any one knows better.
The show's setting was a huge colony spacecraft called The Ark, which had gone off-course. Many of the descendants of the original crew and colonists were unaware of this and that they were even aboard a spaceship.
The series experienced a number of production difficulties right from the start and Ellison ended up disowning it before the first episode had even aired.  16 episode were made in total before the plug was finally pulled.


Saturday, 21 December 2013

Firefly (2002)

Firefly was an American space western TV series created by writer and director Joss Whedon that ran for only 14 episode before getting cancelled.
The show explores the lives of a group of people who fought on the losing side of a civil war and who now make a living on the outskirts of society, as part of the pioneer culture that exists on the fringes of their star system.
Much like Babylon 5 I watched a few minutes of this back in the day and lost interest almost straight away.  And I managed to maintain this indifference despite being told it was fantastic on a fairly regular basis and also being something of a fan of Whedon's Buffy\Angel work!  I can't explain it other than the fact that however good the writing may have been, the very idea of a space western is so obvious and trite as to induce yawns even thinking about it.
The failure to engage is mine, I'm sure, and I'll even concede it must have something going on for it to have such a passionate fan base and to still be held in such high regard.  However I'm never going to watch though.
All that said; it does have some very nice Spacesuits... with neither chaps or a pair of spurs in sight.

Update - Helmets with top-lights and armoured suits are from Soldier (1998) and yellow suits are from Storm Catcher (1999) Pointy chinned helmets with side-lights are from......?


Northstar (1986)

An astronaut's ship passes through a strange magnetic field on its way back to Earth, and when he emerges from it after landing, he finds he has acquired superhuman powers and a super-genius IQ.
A 90 minute TV pilot that failed to launch.


Space: Above and Beyond (1995)

It's the year 2063 and after 150 years of deep space exploration, the people of Earth feel certain they are alone in the universe. Then word comes that two Earth outposts, light-years away from home have been brutally attacked by an advanced alien civilisation. Now the new young recruits of the United States Marine Corps Space Aviator Calvary head for the front lines of space in the toughest battle the world has ever faced.
24 episodes created and written by top X-Files scribes Glen Morgan and James Wong. Originally planned for five seasons, it ran only for the single 1995–1996 season.  And for those that have seen it, it was generally considered to have been quite good and cancelled before it's time.  A recent release of the Region 2 UK box set means I might just get round to watching this myself.
For those that have already had the pleasure, I would love to know if its worth stumping the cash up to watch this these images show "Spacesuits" or "Not really a spacesuit but.."  They look a bit like they might be the latter, which is how I've labelled the post but I'm open to the wisdom of crowds.

Contamination (1980)

Contamination is an Italian horror/sci-fi film that was made to tap into a similar financial vein as Ridley Scott's Alien. - Or so I'm told.  The plot is predominantly earthbound and concerns a former astronaut who helps a government agent and a police detective track the source of mysterious alien pod spores to a South American coffee plantation controlled by alien pod clones.  Its also known as; Alien Contamination, Contamination: Alien on Earth and Toxic Spawn.  Here's a couple of images from the space bit.

A helmet in a helmet...That's new.

Monday, 16 December 2013

The Haunting Hour - Spaceman (2012)

R. L. Stine's The Haunting Hour is a Canadian/American anthology series with half hour episodes in the fantasy and horror genre.  This one is called Spaceman and is the 6th episode of the 3rd series.
When a lonely boy buys a vintage toy space helmet from a yard sale, transmissions from a disembodied voice start coming through, and a strange friendship is born.
Sounds good.  Don't think we get this in the UK which is a shame because we used to make our own weird spooky TV back when I was a nipper and it made me the man I am today.