[UPDATED] Monster of the Day #923

I always loved that this guy’s cardigan grew with him.

Irwin Allen’s shows epitomized the era that saw the networks transition black & white to color. Action shows that straddled the line, like Wild Wild West, often went from outre to downright bonkers once they went to color. Allen’s shows Lost in Space and Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea are some of the more extreme examples. VttBotS‘ first season, in black and white, featured a high proportion of comparatively realistic (and hence occasionally dull) Cold War espionage episodes. Once color hit, it was 90% monsters and aliens and magicians. Good times.

Those fins on the Seaview made it the most bitchin’ looking submarine ever—look at that prop!!!–but man, they proved handy grips for giant monsters looking to thrash the boat around. I never did figure out why they never installed seatbelts on the command deck, given the regularity with which the crew was tossed around the place.

UPDATE: Here’s a nifty new still:

  • Ericb

    There was one episode from the first season that was basically edited clips of David Hedison scenes from The Lost World. Way to save money Irwin.

  • bgbear_rnh

    Cool that you can see the actual scale of the model. So, where is the model today?

  • The Rev.

    I saw this episode not that long ago, but I cannot recall the channel it was on. I quite enjoyed this part.

  • Beckoning Chasm

    “The Amazing Colossal Aquaman!” Now in theatres, from Bert I. Gordon!

  • Ericb

    Won’t he have to come up for air at some point?

  • Rock Baker

    I have the first two episodes on a Columbia House VHS, but I’d love to get the whole series. Interestingly, the first episode was filmed in color. Allen tended to shoot his pilots in color, because they were pretty expensive for television products and he was planning ahead and figured he might be able to use effects sequences at a later date.

    The last episode of this I saw on broadcast television way back when (or was it a 16mm print Pop had for a time?) was one of the monster episodes, albeit one formatted more akin to a theatrical feature. Some energy-eating blob was creeping around the corridors of the Seaview and I recall an attempt to electrocute it using a metal net at one point.

    My favorite Allen series, probably because it’s the one I got to see the most of, remains The Time Tunnel. One thing that impressed me about that series was just how well all the studio stock footage matched the new photography. Although you always knew scenes of armies and galleons and the like were lifted from feature films, they seldom looked out of place. Great cast as well.

  • zombiewhacker

    As a sad sidenote, previous MOTD Jane Adams, who played the hunchbacked nurse from House of Dracula, died a few days ago on June 4th. She was 92.

  • bgbear_rnh

    My memory of “Time Tunnel” is that it never got goofy, maybe unbelievable at times but, not goofy. Good show.

    I always enjoyed “Land of the Giants”. It actually seemed suspenseful and scary at times.

    “City Beneath the Sea” was an entertaining TV movie. I assume it was meant as a pilot.

  • Rock Baker

    I think it managed to balance a more intimate drama with the action stuff, and that gave it a certain edge that wasn’t always found on Allen’s more colorful shows. Sure, The Time Tunnel had plenty of action (I think there was a fist fight and a chase in every episode), but the writers managed to keep everything personal, even in the face of major events. It’s a hard thing to do effectively.

    Sad to note I haven’t seen Land Of The Giants since the early days of the Sci Fi Channel, and I don’t remember very much. One of these days, I’d like to get the complete boxed sets for all of Allen’s series.

  • Flangepart

    Hummm…I posted a reply to this earlier today, with a link, but it’s gone. Did I P.O. the computer? And how do I get my ‘ol’ timer credits’ now I’m back at the Forum?

  • Eric Hinkle

    Sad to say, my first thoughts were ‘she’s still alive’? I still remember her as the kindliest hunchback to ever show up in a Universal horror film.

    For that matter, I’d like to see it get a new DVD release.

  • Luke Blanchard

    I find the board puts my comments in moderation when I include a link. That might be what happened to you. I post as a guest.