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Irwin Allen's Lost Sci-Fi Pilots
PART THREE - PART ONE HERE
Lost in Space

Dear TVparty,

QUOTE: [Irwin Allen produced some of the most colorful and entertaining television programs of all time. Personally, I'm much more fond of his brand of science-fiction as opposed to the more (supposedly) serious fare like Star Trek (the original series) or the current crop of sci-fi junk food like Stargate and Farscape. A proud proponent of style over substance, Allen had at least one sci-fi series on the air every year from 1964-1970.]

While Mr. Ingram is entitled to his opinion, I am in total disagreement with him.

To say that Irwin Allen produced some of the most colorful and entertaining shows of all time is an affront to the wonderful shows we have enjoyed over the last four decades that were equally as entertaining if not more so.

How can the shows Mr. Ingram mentions compare to the likes of MASH, I Love Lucy, The Red Skelton Show and The Carol Burnett Show (to name a few) which have to rank as some of the most colorful and entertaining shows ever on TV? If we eliminate these shows as contenders and turn our attention only to the science fiction genre there are still problems with his comments.

As a sci-fi fan for more than 4 decades, I've read almost every fiction novel out there over the years and I've certainly watched all the shows he mentions. I cannot however, agree with him that those shows were more creative or entertaining than some of the more recent sci-fi shows that have graced the airwaves. I refer to such series as Babylon-5, Crusade, Earth Final Conflict and Farscape as well as the entire Star Trek family. These shows have set the bar for the future and shaped sci-fi television by pushing the envelope of what is possible for TV.

Today's TV audiences are far more sophisticated and discerning than they were in the 60's. Personally, I've always felt that shows like Lost in Space, Time Tunnel and Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea were pretty lame shows with often very weak story lines and at many times not even entertaining.

Thankfully to the likes of Gene Roddenberry (Star Trek, Earth Final Conflict and Andromeda), George Lucas (Star Wars), Stephen Spielberg (E.T. & many others), Joe M. Strazynski (Babylon-5 & Crusade), Rockne S. O'Bannon, Rick Manning & David Kemper (Farscape) we are privileged to enjoy the quality of 21st Century science fiction.

Gene too, entertained TV audiences for more than 20 years and continues to do so today. Further, Star Trek never claimed to be serious fare although at times it was. It has always been entertainment with a moral principle at its core. Kirk and his crew paved the way for the other series. ST The Next Generation had and continues to have an unprecedented following. ST Deep Space 9 explored the issues of war, hatred and greed as well as moral and ethical topics of the day. ST Voyager's story was one of never giving up hope even in the face of insurmountable odds and seemingly impossible circumstances. These series were eminently creative and entertaining.

Finally, Farscape is about as far from "sci-fi junk food" as the show's main character is from Earth and home. Farscape is not only entertaining it is one of, if not the most creative TV show on television today. It is painfully obvious from his comments, that Mr. Ingram has in all likelihood never watched an episode of Farscape and is probably commenting about the show from a cursory glance at the promos for the following week's episode. Farscape is anything but 'junk food'. If anything it could be likened to the gourmet meal's main course, with a complimentary 5* dessert and a fine bodied wine thrown in for good measure.

Farscape is an internationally acclaimed drama which has won numerous awards. With its in-depth character development, excellent plot lines and superb acting by an incredibly talented cast, it is further complemented by creative characters in their own right, from the Henson Creature Shop and the addition of spectacular CGI graphics. The script writers are exceptionally talented individuals who are never afraid to deal with complex, controversial issues while at the same time delighting the socks off us with humor, pathos and suspense.

Through this successful prescription of blended ingredients they have allowed the characters to mature into complex, well-loved beings, which is why the show has enjoyed the enormous following it has in the USA and in at least a half dozen countries outside our borders.

It would behoove you in the future, to edit some of the outrageous, ill informed comments of an individual before you publish such personally held beliefs as facts. While Irwin Allen was a creative individual he does not deserve this glowing testimony to the exclusion of others.

This editorial of Mr. Ingram's is an affront to all science fiction fans, science fiction authors and script writers, producers and actors. It is also an affront to quality television shows that are outside of the science fiction genre.

Sincerely, M. Johnson

Irwin Allen
Irwin Allen - Part Two
Irwin Allen - Another View
Irwin Allen's Time Tunnel
Lost in Space Jet Pack


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