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SPACE: 1999 Season 2 Coming To Blu-Ray!


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#21 of 98 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted January 27 2011 - 09:07 AM

Funny, but when I was a kid, me and my brother, used to prefer season two. And, when season two was done, and they started re-running the show back from season one, we were disappointed. I didn't become more of a fan of season one until I started to get older and saw repeats on this station late at night. This was in the mid-80s, I think, and it was, like, 1 am, on channel 6, or something. They way they aired it, though, was terrible. Everything was so damn dark. But they never aired season two. I think it was only airing for six months before they changed the programming and took it off. Currently, the only season two eps I own are "The Bringers Of Wonder" and "Space Warp" from that old standard DVD that came out back in the early 2000s.


Of course, I'll end up owning this some day, since my memory is vague on a lot of the episodes. I never bought the whole set, just the DVD with the three aforementioned episodes.



#22 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin EK

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Posted January 27 2011 - 02:27 PM

Kevin, I completely understand that you enjoy Series Two, and, again, I don't denigrate that opinion.


But Martin Landau and Gerry Anderson were not being specially edited to sound negative about Series Two.  They did this on their own.  I have a copy of the Fanderson magazine interview with Martin Landau from about 10 years ago, and Landau is fairly uncomplimentary about how Series Two was handled.  He specifically mentions the bit in "The Exiles" where Koenig stuns Cantor without any warning.  He says that he fought against this, that it was out of character, but that in the end he had to relent because they still had to film the episode and he was starting to become "the bad guy."  I don't know who Landau thought his audience was for the Fanderson documentary, but it sounds like his candid opinion.   By the same token, Catherine Bell's comments about her costume for "Guardian of Piri" are similarly candid.  As I recall, her interview with the Fanderson magazine mentioned some lingering issues she had with the producers after the series was finished. So I don't know that it's just a couple of comments of sour grapes as much as it is people being candid about their thoughts at this point.


I have a feeling that the Landau and Bain portions of the interviews could not be used without their permission, and I'm willing to bet that they insisted on a payment if these materials were to be used on a publicly sold DVD.


The Sylvia Anderson comments about both Landau and Bain are accurate, I'm sure, and they don't paint a flattering picture.  Landau's reaction to Giancarlo Prete doesn't come off that well, and Anderson's discussion in her commentary about Landau giving Roy Dotrice acting notes after a play performance in London is similarly unflattering.  But we should also keep in mind that she has her own issues here.  All of this happened in the middle of her split from Gerry Anderson, which was not a happy time for her at all.   As I said in my review, her comments get so caustic at times that you may well think that steam is coming out of your television set...



#23 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin L McCorry

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Posted January 27 2011 - 11:39 PM


Never had a problem with that scene in "The Exiles". Is this not the same Koenig who in "The Last Enemy" ordered Carter to take Eagles up to attack the Satazius preemptively? After the experience with Balor, I'm sure Koenig would be loathe to trust any alien without being reasonably certain the alien could be subdued. If anyone's acting out of character in that scene in "The Exiles", it's Verdeschi. But then again, it's early in the season. Tony may have developed his more suspicious nature later on. Koenig's behavior in Year 2 never bothered me. As Landau himself often said, Koenig was stretched to the limit of his endurance and patience. Beleagured humanity, I think is what Penfold said.


A lot of Landau's venom toward Year 2 is post-1980s. I remember reading far more moderate interviews with him in Starlog and the old Alliance newsletters. The ironic thing is Freiberger in interviews spoke respectfully of Landau. It's Sylvia Anderson who's speaking disdainfully. But a lot of this, 35 years on, looks to me like a bunch of childish sour grapes by all concerned. How so many talented people who made a wonderful show that captured imaginations, can be so hateful and petty and inconsiderate of their viewers, doesn't give one much hope for humanity and the future.

Originally Posted by Kevin EK 

Kevin, I completely understand that you enjoy Series Two, and, again, I don't denigrate that opinion.


But Martin Landau and Gerry Anderson were not being specially edited to sound negative about Series Two.  They did this on their own.  I have a copy of the Fanderson magazine interview with Martin Landau from about 10 years ago, and Landau is fairly uncomplimentary about how Series Two was handled.  He specifically mentions the bit in "The Exiles" where Koenig stuns Cantor without any warning.  He says that he fought against this, that it was out of character, but that in the end he had to relent because they still had to film the episode and he was starting to become "the bad guy."  I don't know who Landau thought his audience was for the Fanderson documentary, but it sounds like his candid opinion.   By the same token, Catherine Bell's comments about her costume for "Guardian of Piri" are similarly candid.  As I recall, her interview with the Fanderson magazine mentioned some lingering issues she had with the producers after the series was finished. So I don't know that it's just a couple of comments of sour grapes as much as it is people being candid about their thoughts at this point.


I have a feeling that the Landau and Bain portions of the interviews could not be used without their permission, and I'm willing to bet that they insisted on a payment if these materials were to be used on a publicly sold DVD.


The Sylvia Anderson comments about both Landau and Bain are accurate, I'm sure, and they don't paint a flattering picture.  Landau's reaction to Giancarlo Prete doesn't come off that well, and Anderson's discussion in her commentary about Landau giving Roy Dotrice acting notes after a play performance in London is similarly unflattering.  But we should also keep in mind that she has her own issues here.  All of this happened in the middle of her split from Gerry Anderson, which was not a happy time for her at all.   As I said in my review, her comments get so caustic at times that you may well think that steam is coming out of your television set...





#24 of 98 OFFLINE   AndyMcKinney

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Posted January 28 2011 - 07:17 AM



Originally Posted by Kevin L McCorry 
A lot of Landau's venom toward Year 2 is post-1980s. I remember reading far more moderate interviews with him in Starlog and the old Alliance newsletters. The ironic thing is Freiberger in interviews spoke respectfully of Landau. It's Sylvia Anderson who's speaking disdainfully. But a lot of this, 35 years on, looks to me like a bunch of childish sour grapes by all concerned. How so many talented people who made a wonderful show that captured imaginations, can be so hateful and petty and inconsiderate of their viewers, doesn't give one much hope for humanity and the future.


There is a 1980s Starlog interview (#108, maybe?) where he doesn't exactly spit venom, but said something to the effect that he didn't think the Year Two changes helped at all, that he felt the whole tone was 'wrong' and he felt that if they'd maintained the look and feel of Year One, that the show "would have hit" (in his words).


He also said he felt that Lew Grade needing money for his movie Raise the Titanic was the real reason there was no third season.


Yes, Frieberger was often respectful of the Landaus, but he said on more than one occasion that he felt that the stars of the show should have been much younger (this goes all the way back to Frieberger's infamous Starlog interview, around issue #40, I think).



#25 of 98 OFFLINE   AndyMcKinney

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Posted January 28 2011 - 07:25 AM



Originally Posted by Kevin L McCorry 

Where is it said that A&E and Network are teaming up to release Season 2? For all we know, it's A&E going it alone, upconverting the existing DVD transfers to BD. With the extras, including "Message From Moonbase Alpha", interviews, etc. ported over.


And I'll believe Network's involvement when I see it.



I think this is very unlikely, and I'm pretty sure that Network will get on board (especially with A&E to split the costs of the remastering with). If by some stroke you are right, then I'm sure there will be massive hatred directed to A&E and such a release would fail big time. I doubt anyone here would double-dip for an upscale, and I'm sure if that ever does happen, we'll all find out about it (via reviews, if nothing else) before release date.


Still, there's plenty of time before then for us to find out what's really going to happen.



#26 of 98 ONLINE   Nelson Au

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Posted January 28 2011 - 07:56 AM

Pardon the OT comment, but Starlog magazine! I have the first 200 or so issues in a box, still mint. More or less. I should dig out those issues and read the interviews you guys mention. I just checked and was sad to see it ceased publication after 30 years in 2006.


#27 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin L McCorry

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Posted January 29 2011 - 12:50 AM

I believe his words were, "Freddie helped in some respects but overall I don't think he helped the show." Not a ringing endorsement, true, but hardly absolutely vitriolic. And then his comment about ITC opting to go ahead with funding Raise the Titanic more or less absolved S2 from ultimate blame for the cancellation. Besides, what many people like to forget, ratings did drop during S1, and Lew Grade was unhappy about that and cancelled the show. There was no possibility of it coming back unless it was retooled. And Anderson and Freiberger worked together on that retooling. There was, however, a talk, post S2, of a spin-off with Maya along with an additional 13 Space episodes. If the show had bombed utterly in its S2 format, no such prospects would have been broached.


Freiberger's words, I think, were, "I have great respect for Marty and Barbara, but I think science fiction should have young faces." I wouldn't take the comment about young faces very personally or harshly. It's generally accepted that science fiction, at least popular TV science fiction, needs youth appeal (even if the leads aren't young) and that some youth in the cast is essential. I interviewd Freiberger myself some years ago, and he was gracious about everyone concerned. He was taken aback, understandably, to learn of the stridently negative, blaming stance that Anderson was taking. But he was always tactful. A very nice man.


Originally Posted by AndyMcKinney 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin L McCorry 
A lot of Landau's venom toward Year 2 is post-1980s. I remember reading far more moderate interviews with him in Starlog and the old Alliance newsletters. The ironic thing is Freiberger in interviews spoke respectfully of Landau. It's Sylvia Anderson who's speaking disdainfully. But a lot of this, 35 years on, looks to me like a bunch of childish sour grapes by all concerned. How so many talented people who made a wonderful show that captured imaginations, can be so hateful and petty and inconsiderate of their viewers, doesn't give one much hope for humanity and the future.


There is a 1980s Starlog interview (#108, maybe?) where he doesn't exactly spit venom, but said something to the effect that he didn't think the Year Two changes helped at all, that he felt the whole tone was 'wrong' and he felt that if they'd maintained the look and feel of Year One, that the show "would have hit" (in his words).


He also said he felt that Lew Grade needing money for his movie Raise the Titanic was the real reason there was no third season.


Yes, Frieberger was often respectful of the Landaus, but he said on more than one occasion that he felt that the stars of the show should have been much younger (this goes all the way back to Frieberger's infamous Starlog interview, around issue #40, I think).





#28 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin EK

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Posted January 29 2011 - 06:25 AM

I'm sure that Fred Freiberger was a good producer and a decent man, but not everyone who dealt with him had the same experience.  David Gerrold has spoken quite bitterly of his experiences with him on Star Trek's 3rd Season, and while Bob Justman was tactful in his discussions about what happened that year, it's clear he wasn't giving a glowing review.    (To be fair, Justman was correctly displeased about having been stepped over, and by the middle of that season, he left the show.)


But I digress - getting back to Space 1999 Series Two, I'll just quote from Martin Landau's interview in FAB Magazine #46, published in 2003:  (And I'll note that these are Martin Landau's own comments - I don't endorse them, or even agree with all of them - but they are his opinions and beliefs and should be understood as such.)



"...These were the things that were never spoken about, particularly in the second year when certain things would be written in the scripts that totally went against what we had established about the characters in the first year.  I mean, we would have things where Koenig would make a pre-emptive attack without any motivation whatsoever, so I would go to producer Fred Freiberger's office and say, 'This is ridiculous, this is totally against Koenig's philosophy.' And he said 'What are you talking about?' So I said 'He would never do this.  He would not make this unilateral decision and blow people away.  It's totally against his character.' He says 'People won't notice' and I said 'What do you mean people won't notice? People watch this every week...' and I would fight like a tiger with him and often lose those fights because there we were, we had to shoot something that day and I was becoming a bad guy for standing up for the rights of the show and the integrity of the character.  I never wanted to do that, to corrupt the film-making process that way because that is not the way that I work, but I often felt that I had to because I felt that we owed it to the viewers.  Then I would fight and we'd do some rewriting to make it a little more palatable, but very often I would lose the battles because we had to get on and shoot something.  I would often try to write on my feet, working with the director on the spot to try and make it possible to do it in a way that it wouldn't totally offend me first of all, and then ultimately offend the viewers."


"I was always concerned with the integrity of the show.  It was never an ego trip for me or anything like that.  It was just the fact that I began to understand Koenig and his philosophy, his ideology, his very innards, and there were situations where I knew that he would rather commit suicide than do what some of those scripts had him doing.  I mean, he would never let anyone else put themselves in a position of jeopardy if he felt that he could deal with it in a better way, and even though there was danger, the well-being of the Moonbase and the majority of the people was always utmost in his mind.  If it came down to a question of someone having to sacrifice something, he would always weigh the possibilities and would never do anything foolhardy.  But in the second season, I wound up doing things in several epiosodes that were absolutely against the grain of the character, and that can be very frustrating for an artist who cares about the subtext of the character."


"I was never crazy about the metamorph character.  I mean in terms of what that show meant, it suddenly took on a different shape and I felt that it wasn't really the show that I had raised my hand to do initially.  It became a little more conventional.  I feel that the trajectory we were on in the first season would have grown into itself, the look of the show and everything about that would have eventually found its audience.  Mission: Impossible was not a success the first year and we barely stayed on.  It was the summer reruns and the second season that began to make it a big hit, and then it became an enormous hit and ran for seven seasons.  We were almost cancelled three times during the first year, but we stuck to our guns and the show caught on.  We never compromised it, even though it wasn't getting the numbers, because we knew we had something good.  Compromising it doesn't help, but people start panicking and want to change things that make it more ordinary.  If begin to believe everything that you read and hear, then you're a weakling and that's what happened with Space: 1999, unfortunately.  You have to be strong because you get whacked on the head a lot in this business.  I could take the comparisons to Star Trek and the criticisms because I didn't believe them.  I new what we were and I knew where we were heading, but suddenly we took a detour and I feel that was our downfall."


"I never wanted to succumb to the pressures that were coming from the States and so on, and bringing Freddie in... I mean, I don't think that Freddie was an untalented man, but I do think that the Star Treks that he produced were the less good ones, frankly.  We were not like Star Trek and there was no need to become more like it - that was giving up.  Shows like Black Sun were intelligent shows and they were provocative, they were different, they were unique unto themselves and the style of the show was our own.  The fact that there was more colour on the show in the second season was not a good thing.  There was look, it had a feel.  The costumes that Rudi Gernreich were unisex, but you coudl tell from a long distance away what someone did.  In the army to this day, you have to get really up close to someone to see what the hell their duties are, so that design for the Alpha uniforms was intelligent.  The second you saw someone with a white sleeve you knew they were medics.  You knew that the astronauts were wearing orange sleeves and the Main Mission people had red sleeves and so on. I had the only charcoal grey sleeve and the collar too, so you knew immediately that I was the commander from a hundred yards away, which is very important.  Those were intelligent choices and the army could learn something from that.  Those kinds of things were diminished in the second season when we started getting orange jackets, jazzing it up and doing stuff that I felt was impure."


When asked about what made the first year so different:  "It was just its own piece.  It had its own style.  It had its own writers.  It was more metaphysical, it was more ethereal, it was more like true science fiction instead of space opera.  It was new.  It didn't look like anything else, it didn't feel like anything else, it was its own person and the characters were their own people.  They would have grown on the viewers because we would have gotten to know them.  They were strangers and everyone wanted us to be like someone else.  That's always the case at the beginning of a show and we shouldn't have done any of that."


"There was a certain stoicism in Koenig on the one hand, but then not at all on the other because he was very emotional.  If you look at a show like Collision Course, there were times when he went bonkers and absolutely lost it, but he didn't try not to let anyone see that - even though there were times when he was locked up by his own people because they thought he was losing it.  It was a different kind of show and that's what people had to understand.  People had to believe in it as a concept piece unto itself, but unfortunately that didn't happen.  I think that Gerry Anderson is a very talented man but he was forced into this ITC thinking: get an American producer, add more colour, put monsters in the show, do this, do that, all of that stuff.  I guess they had to make those compromises to get the second season going, but to this day, I think that if they could have stuck by their guns and been allowed to make a second season like the first, we would have gone on and done a third and fourth season."


Asked about what could have happened if there had been a third season:  "I think if it had continued along the way it was going, it wouldd have found its own level, the way that water finds its own level and truth finds its own level.  I think that the show would have subtly found its own life and texture.  It's true that we almost went to a third season and the reason we didn't probably was because Lew Grade got into feature films and our budget for the third season was about the same amount of money he needed to promote and market the major motion pictures he had in the can.  It literally got right down to the wire whether we would go into a third season or not and in the end it came down to dollars and cents.  Unfortunately, none of Lew Grade's movies ever did well and he would probably have been better off spending that money on Space: 1999 and putting us on again, because we would have had a larger syndication package."


"If we had gone on and done a third season, I would have tended to hope for moving back toward the first season more in terms of ideas and storylines, and get back to certain kinds of basic things.  With Catherine on board, of course, we would have had to introduce the metamorph into that context, but I think we could have used it differently, in a less superficial and comic strip way.  Because, you know, some of those monsters we had were pitiful.  They didn't look very good.  They looked like rubber suits and that always bothered me.  I said 'My God, we're talking life and death here and then one of these silly clown outfits comes walking by and it looks like we should put a laugh track on this show.'  I mean, some of those alien characters - like the one that breathed chlorine in The AB Chrysalis - they were just pitiful, you know, because no one had enough time to make these things.  You read a script and there's this creature in it, so a bunch of guys get together and make this thing and cover it with a bunch of rubber and suddenly it's got this great significance because it's one of our leading characters in the next show!  We were looking at these things and saying, 'My God! This would be good on Saturday Night Live or Monty Python but not on Space: 1999!'  Now I have to say that we had wonderful make-up artists on the show and they were all terrific, very talented people, but when you get a script five days before you go in front of the camera and suddenly you need an alien character that breathes carbon monoxide and gives off laughing gas or something...well, it's tough."


About how they came to the show:  "I think when we first arrived, people didn't know what to expect from Barbara and myself.  I think the producers and directors had previously worked with other American actors who had come over to England and misbehaved a bit, and I think that maybe we had inherited a legacy from them.  We're professional actors and we had left Mission: Impossible at the height of its success - not for the reasons that were stated but because we just felt that the integrity of the show was being affected by the new people who were taking over at that time.  Anyway, when we came over to do Space: 1999, I think people expected us to be difficult to work with, but I think over all we lived that down to some degree."


Now, Landau's comments should be taken with more than a few grains of salt, but these are his unedited opinions about the series and about his work on it.  I believe he has completely misunderstood the point of Army uniforms, and his rationale for leaving Mission: Impossible sounds like a rewrite of what actually happened.  But to be fair, he's not just pointing a finger at Fred Freiberger - he's also saying that he thought Gerry Anderson should have taken a stronger position about the kind of show they were making.  And to be fair, Gerry Anderson himself says the same thing when he's asked about it.


I remember enjoying Series Two when I saw it as a child - it was instantly more approachable and understandable than Series One, and at the time I recall Starlog Magazine breathing a sigh of relief about the new episodes.  The feeling at the time was that the first year was too cerebral, with too much emphasis on some Mysterious Cosmic Force that never really gets named, and too many abstract concepts.  With the second year, there was always a solid sense of exactly what was happening and what the point of the story was.  In the years since then, I've grown to appreciate the first year much more, as the concepts have become more interesting to me.  But I can easily see how people can prefer the second year for its grounding.



#29 of 98 OFFLINE   SWFF

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Posted January 29 2011 - 06:49 AM

 This is exactly why I prefer season one over season two. Astronauts coming into contact with an unknown force, essentially. It has a very Lovecraftian vibe, in some respects.   


     Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin EK 

The feeling at the time was that the first year was too cerebral, with too much emphasis on some Mysterious Cosmic Force that never really gets named, and too many abstract concepts.


#30 of 98 ONLINE   Nelson Au

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Posted January 29 2011 - 09:49 AM

Thanks for posting the interview with Landau. Good read. I also totally forgot that Martin Landau and Barbara Bain were making Mission: Impossible literally right next door to the Star Trek sound stages at the time Freibrerger was producing the third year of Trek. In a sense, Landau was proven right. Overvtime people came to appreciate what the first was doing. And with the way the show changed in the second year, it makes for such a contrast! I have not seen the second year since I never got all the DVDs of the second year till recently. So I look forward to seeing it, or waiting for the blu ray.

#31 of 98 OFFLINE   BOTA99

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Posted January 29 2011 - 08:34 PM

Hullo. I just ran across this forum searching google for possible release dates of Networks Seaon 2 Space 1999. You all appear to be using Blu Ray which I have not switched over to yet Posted Image but I was wondering if any of you knew if it was also being released in standard DVD format as well? Thanks in advance for any help in answering this!


#32 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin L McCorry

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Posted January 30 2011 - 12:32 AM

Just about everything that Landau says is contentious and subjective. And one has to wonder how much of it was influenced over the years in his meetings with fans. Or even by his career slump after the series ended. It's true he was unhappy during the making of S2. But he was unhappy a lot of the time during the making of S1, too.


In any case, there is a lot of supposition in the belief that the show in its S1 format could have run for several seasons or that it had a format that was sustainable without repetition or demystifying of the mystery. So far, nearly all that I've seen in fan and pro writer attempts to extend the season is rehashing Balor, the Dragon, Jarak, etc.. The most original stuff were the novels of E.C. Tubb and John Rankine. But even the storylines in those anticipate the change to the Year 2 format, with reconnaissances to lush and populated planets and encounters with alien societies whose leadership deceives or drugs the populace or the opening of sub-Lunarian caverns, psychic studies on Alphans, etc.. The Charlton comic book stories were all action-adventure (again foreshadowing S2) and in most cases much more original than fan works. And then there was the killing off of Alphans which persists unabated. Not sustainable for multiple seasons. And during first run of S1, there were indications that it wasn't sustainable. After "curiosity viewing", the size of audience just didn't keep to the level that ITC wanted. It didn't help matters that many stations aired S1's most striking episodes early on.

The Doctor Who series would not have continued as long as it did if its format didn't change. The Third Doctor's era is so much different from that of the First! Star Trek has managed to endure, but it could be argued that it changed, too.


The refrain against the use of monsters has grown more strident in the last 20 years than it was earlier on. People recognized that with the Cantina scene in Star Wars, the bounty hunters in The Empire Strikes Back, the Gorn and Mugatu in Star Trek, and the many rubbery aliens in Doctor Who, alien monsters were an essential element of science fiction of mass appeal. The Cantina scene in Star Wars was often cited as the coolest one in the movie. And really, the monsters in that are in many cases just as much men in suits as the ones in Space: 1999. The difference, maybe, is that Space: 1999's alien creatures looked more outlandish, but again, there is a lot of subjectivity involved. In most cases, the monsters were Maya transformations that appeared for less than a minute. And which took on some of Maya's qualities. Long red hair, for instance. Strangely enough, the Kreno animal Landau singles out for severe criticism was one of the more imaginative and convincing of the ones that appeared. And the monsters Maya turned into almost never were what resolved the primary episode crisis. A lot of the time, it was a team effort. Also, she turned not just into monsters but other people and animals. There was variety. And one of the non-Maya monsters was a robot. While the monsters in "Dragon's Domain" and a lesser extent "The Bringers of Wonder" were different and excellent, were such monsters to be used every week, the effect on the would have been diminished. It would become "old hat". Invisible or humanoid aliens, likewise.


The people who constantly assail S2 and by extension those who appreciate it constantly fail to see other angles or to understand the other point of view. After I saw S2, I enjoyed S1 and for quite some time even preferred it. And I can see the merit that's in it that appeals to many people. However, when I first saw it and for several years thereafter, I still took it as a space adventure series, which in many S1 episodes was still what it was. Episodes like "War Games", "Dragon's Domain", etc. awed me for their distinctive feature (i.e. the destruction of Alpha, the tentacled people-eater), and I still love them for that. But as some of us get older, it's not so much moments of horror and esoteric concepts that appeal but the normal sociability of the characters, more accessible, action-driven stories and adventure concepts, and how such things were complemented in active social life at the time the series was first watched. Generally, the more sociable and fondly remembered of my old friends preferred and will forever be associated with S2- even though just about all of them now have no use for the series (either season).


I really don't care to add further to the discussion and propose to stop. I've already gone on longer than I wanted to. The subjectivity factor that I've cited is immense in people's adverse reactions to S2 and their refusal to grant it the license to effect changes in style or to not address the absence of characters or certain concepts. There are ways to bridge the 2 seasons, and in my Chronology (http://kevinmccorryt...m/sp1999ep0.htm), I have done so. Personally, I think there is a bountiful amount of content to the 48-episode span of the show, and it's people's loss if they're unable or unwilling to accept that and appreciate that. This is where I stand today on the issue. Landau, Anderson, and others can say what they will; their opinion can be as contentious as anyone else's. I've already debunked Landau's objection to that scene in "The Exiles", for example.


To BOTA99, A&E has not to my knowledge released a parallel DVD set to the Blu-Ray one. Network in the U.K. has done so, however.



#33 of 98 OFFLINE   BOTA99

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Posted January 30 2011 - 12:49 AM

Hmm thanks. I shall have to go back to Amazon.UK and search harder (yes I have a region free dvd player ;)) The season one I just ordered was just released in Nov. 2010. It was a brand new thing done in better quality than the others previously and a blu ray was also released at the same time. I see the season 2 blu ray is what you guys have been talking about here.


Damn.. just ran into this..

http://www.atvnewsne...ace-1999-on-dvd


This is from Oct 2010. Network announced they will not be giving S2 a special updated release in dvd format :/


Well, I guess maybe I will be getting a blu ray by the end of the year lol


#34 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin EK

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Posted January 30 2011 - 08:16 AM

I believe that Network may well have changed its mind after the sales of Series One went well on Blu.  We'll have to see what is in store - I do hope that Network is involved.


I also believe that we'll be seeing HD transfers of all the Series Two episodes, akin to the copy of "The Metamorph" in last year's set.   This will not be a bunch of upconversions - if they did something like that, you'd see an outcry that would kill a good chunk of their sales.   Most of the reason for the strong sales of the Series One Blus is the quality of the HD picture, which, like the rest of the set, is really a gift to the fans.


I remain curious as to what extras will be provided.  I'm not sure who is left that can provide commentaries these days, but it would be nice to hear something from Gerry Anderson, Zienia Merton or Catherine Schell.  Given the passing of Fred Freiberger, Johnny Byrne and Tony Anholt, among others, over the years, we don't have a lot of people left who can speak comprehensively about the show, and are willing to do so.  I strongly doubt that you'll see any participation from Landau or Bain.



#35 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin L McCorry

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Posted January 30 2011 - 11:36 PM

If Network are involved, I certainly hope a better job is done with the audio than was the case with "The Metamorph" on BD. Derek Wadsworth's music is one of S2's most distinctive traits. It should not be buried underneath the sound effects. Strangely enough, the only DVD release that has the right music mix levels for the early S2 episodes is the French Cosmos: 1999 one.

I would also hope that as with S1, Network exercise discretion in what is shown in the wider frame. Boom mics, clapperboards, and other material that oughtn't to be seen should be cropped out.


And also, as regards episode order on the discs, if it is to follow production order, then the one on the A&E discs should be used. "The Beta Cloud", "A Matter of Balance", and then "Space Warp". NOT "The Beta Cloud", "Space Warp", and "A Matter of Balance". And "Catacombs of the Moon" after "The A B Chrysalis", not before.



#36 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin EK

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Posted January 31 2011 - 05:01 AM

In my review of the Blu-ray, I noted that the music levels for The Metamorph are a little lower than on the prior SD A&E DVD, but only enough for me to just notice.  On my sound system at home, the music cues came through very well, and I didn't notice moments where they were buried underneath the sound effects.  Are there specific points where you noticed this problem?  I'd be happy to go back and re-run those scenes to be sure.


I'm also noticing a curiosity about the proper production order for Series Two, in that Derek Wadsworth returned to the series to write a new score for Space Warp, which was then used infinitum for the rest of the year, particularly in The Beta Cloud, which was actually filmed earlier.



#37 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin L McCorry

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Posted January 31 2011 - 05:20 AM


Re. unsatisfying music levels in "The Metamorph" on BD.


1) The scene where Mentor is telling Koenig about Psyche and Koenig realizes that the creatures in the pits had their minds drained into Psyche. Leads up to Mentor giving Koenig a demonstration of Psyche's power. The music on the BD is barely audible. I'm used to being able to hear it clearly. It's music that plays often in the series when Koenig is distressed or overpowered (as in "Seed of Destruction" in the cave by his double, as in "The Bringers of Wonder" as he is hypoed by Helena, as in "Devil's Planet" when his uniform is removed from him). Definitely a Koenig piece.

2) Start of Act IV as the robot Eagle is flying and as Koenig is pacing in the cell and Carter is staring him down. The music is feeble when it should be intense.


3) As Psychon is exploding and Helena and Fraser try to rescue Torens from the caves, the music (perhaps my favorite of Wadsworth's scores) can barely be heard. You should be able to hear it clearly accompanying Helena's efforts to dig Torens out from under the fallen rocks. The music throughout the climactic scenes should be pulse-pounding. Not feeble.


4) Another favorite of mine is the rare piece of music playing as Eagle 4 lifts off from Alpha on its supposed rendez-vous with Mentor. It doesn't sound too bad on the BD, but it still isn't as high as it could be. It's supposed to be a stirring piece of music. Our heroes lifting off for the first time in S2.


There are other examples, but these are the ones that stand out for me.



#38 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin EK

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Posted January 31 2011 - 07:11 AM

I'll recheck the levels when I get home from work, but my immediate recollection of examples 3 and 4 is that I clearly heard the score at a solid level for both scenes.  Again, the level is a little lower than where it was on the A&E DVD (Volume 9, to be precise), but only so much that I just noticed it.   I also recall the music as Koenig smashes the Biological Computer (one of my favorite pieces of the 2nd Season) was at a good level too.  I don't remember example 1 being off, but I'll listen again - my memory of the scene is usually influenced by the brain drain demonstration that follows.


By the way, if you pay attention, poor Torens' uniform changes between the time he is brain drained, and when he winds up in the pits, from a Series Two costume with a collar to a Series One costume without the collar.  So they not only took his brain, they took his collar too.  That, and I'm still trying to figure out who thought that vest on Koenig in the opening scene was a good idea.  He only wore it once, and thankfully never again...



#39 of 98 OFFLINE   Kevin EK

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Posted February 01 2011 - 02:24 AM

Having now rechecked the levels on those four moments in The Metamorph on both the SD DVD and the Blu-ray,  I can say that the music levels are indeed a little lower on the Blu-ray than on the SD DVD, but the only one that I feel could come up is Example 3.


Example 1 is low key, but the sound in general for that scene is played low key - in a similar manner to how it is heard on the SD DVD.  It's a quiet moment between Koenig and Mentor, and the use of music and sound goes with this.


Example 2 is also played low key, partly due to its being a re-use of music from the episode's teaser.  Things really kick off when the new cue starts right after this moment, leading to the point that Mentor figures out what is going on.  (BTW the shot of the Eagle leaving the Moon's orbit on Blu-ray makes the Moon painting more than clear...)


Example 3 I stand corrected about.  The music does sound a bit subdued.  It's not buried, but the sound effects are definitely dialed a little higher, not only in the pits, but when Koenig starts wrecking Psyche.


Example 4 sounds pretty good to me.


I'll be curious to hear the mixes in the Series Two Blu.  I have a feeling they'll be stronger in these areas.



#40 of 98 OFFLINE   Alstrup

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Posted February 03 2011 - 08:54 AM

 Hi - Ole Alstrup here from ITC_DVD over at Yahoo Groups.


The HD transfer of THE METAMORPH seen on the new Year One Blu-ray editions was done in 2007, as a standalone episode of Year Two, being commissioned for a special presentation by copyright owner Granada Ventures (now named ITV Global Entertainment) for a UK Fanderson convention. It was done by colorist Jonathan Wood of BBC-R.

The arhival mono audio element used for this transfer should not be judged in comparison to Year One, or as a benchmark for future audio quality of an upcoming Year 2 release, restoration on these episodes is certain to happen, hopefully the available archival materials are more diverse with 35mm sep mags or even multi track stems,  many titles in the ITC archive was heavily mutilated by former owner Polygram Intl, who junked a lot of material in the 90's.


The OCN-to-new-IP film restoration of Year 2 by Granada/ITV-GE was well underway in 2007, having completed restoration of Year One in 2004. So it is assumed that the film element used for this transfer was from the new IP.


If BBC-R is not involved with Year Two, it will likely be Technicolor Creative Services London, who has worked on a number of HD titles for ITV-GE, including The Prisoner.


- Ole Alstrup

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