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Roddenberry’s Genesis II and Planet Earth Coming to DVD October 2, 2009

by Anthony Pascale , Filed under: Celebrity,Sci-Fi,TOS , trackback

In the early 1970s Gene Roddenberry developed a number of sci-fi TV series to be his big follow-up for Star Trek, but none of them got past the pilot/TV movie stage. Next week Warner Bros will be releasing two of them on DVD for the first time: Genesis II and Planet Earth. We have details and clips below

 

Roddenberry’s post apocalypse: Genesis II & Planet Earth
1973’s Genesis II was Gene Roddenberry’s first attempt at a TV show following Star Trek. The story was about a NASA scientist (Dylan Hunt, played by Alex Cord), who due to a failed suspended animation, ends up awakening in a post- apocalyptic Earth in 2133. Hunt is discovered by the ‘PAX’ team, some of the last remaining scientists in the devastated world.

Warner Bros. has provided TrekMovie with this clip of the Genesis TV movie.

Roddenberry produced a pilot and developed the first season’s worth of scripts for a potential pick-up at CBS. In the end CBS only aired the pilot and decided to pick up a TV version of Planet of the Apes, which was itself cancelled after only 13 episodes. Roddenberry spoke about the potential of the show, saying:

GENESIS II had the makings of a very exciting show. It had one thing in common with STAR TREK and that was that you could bring in a good writer and say to him, ‘What bothers you about the world?’, then go and invent a place in this new world and have it happening there.

The cast of Genesis II contained many Trek vets, including Ted Cassidy, Marriette Hartley (with two belly-buttons), and Majel Barrett Roddenberry. A couple of the script ideas for the series that never was were reworked into Star Trek Phase II, with one idea morphing into a kernel of Star Trek The Motion Picture (for more on that see 1999 article "Life After Trek" by Ed Gross).


Roddenberry’s "Genesis II" coming to DVD next week

A year after CBS turned down the show, Warner Bros. and Roddenberry reworked the idea into Planet Earth. In this version, Dylan Hunt is now the leader of the PAX team, who do surveys in the post-apocalyptic world. Much of the cast returned, but John Saxon replaced Cord as Dylan Hunt. The pilot TV movie have them discovery a society run entirely by women.

WB has given us a clip of that as well:

ABC aired the pilot as a TV movie, but did not pick up the series. Warner Bros. and ABC also developed a third TV movie called Strange New World, using many of the same concepts and also starring Saxon, but Gene Roddenberry was not involved. The names of the characters were all changed to avoid legal issues with Roddenberry.


Roddenberry’s "Planet Earth" coming to DVD next week

Both Genesis II and Planet Earth will be available next Tuesday.

UPDATE: You can pre-order both titles in a value-pack for $29.99 at the WB Shop.

For more on Genesis II, Planet Earth and Strange New World at fan site Pax Team 21.

Dylan returned in Andromeda
DS9 veteran Robert Hewett Wolfe reworked some concepts from these shows, including the character name Dylan Hunt, into the sci-fi series "Gene Roddenberry’s Andromeda", starring Kevin Sorbo,  which ran for five seasons in syndication and the SciFi Channel from 2000-2005. All five seasons of Andromeda are available on DVD.     

 

Comments

1. Horatio - October 2, 2009

Its about time!! I love Genesis II. I thought Planet Earth was less well executed and I preferred Alex Cord over John Saxon.

BTW, Mariette Hartley with two navels was sexy in the day!!! (OK, I was 12!)

Glad to see these are making it to DVD. Any idea if Roddenberry’s other pilot, Questor, is coming out?

2. frederick von fronkensteen - October 2, 2009

Maybe this bodes well for The Questor Tapes!

3. Daoud - October 2, 2009

There are YouTube clips of “Strange New World” out there too.

They may not have used Roddenberry’s names, but listen to all the sound effects!! Straight from Trek. :) (Not that they were all original to Trek, but really….)

4. Thomas Jensen - October 2, 2009

Genesis II was a great pilot episode. It had a wonderful atmosphere to it. All wasn’t good in every city on earth. Planet Earth wasn’t as good as it was retooled and became somewhat commercial. I admire John Saxon, but as a scientist, Alex Cord was more believable.

These episodes incorporated the “many worlds” concept from Star Trek. The subshuttle would journey to different cities each week.

But Genesis II lost out to the Planet of the Apes series on CBS.

5. Captain Serek - October 2, 2009

I agree, who knows, maybe the Questor Tapes might be there as well. I saw all these when they were first aired a long time ago. It will be good to see them again.

6. HotStove - October 2, 2009

Always wanted to see Genesis II. We need the Questor Tapes, too!

7. navamske - October 2, 2009

“Genesis” allowed is not — is pilot forbidden!

8. THX-1138 - October 2, 2009

#7

Good one.

9. AnotherQ - October 2, 2009

I’ve only heard of these projects in passing
and not very familiar with them. Looks like
something cool to catch up with while i’m
waiting for the next Trek movie.

10. Gregster - October 2, 2009

I had such a crush on Mariette Hartley. I remember that she wore outfits with large areas of fabric…um…missing.

11. bill hiro - October 2, 2009

Finally!

I’ve long agitated for a “Failed Pilots of Gene Roddenberry” box set with Genesis II, Planet Earth, The Questor Tapes, and Spectre, so this news is definietly a step in the right direction.

12. Sean4000 - October 2, 2009

#7, LOL!!!

13. Spockish - October 2, 2009

I’ve got Earth II on DVD that I made from it’s AMC airing, and a few episodes from Strange New World, think Netflix has the series, but stopped using Netflix 19 month ago.

To bad Genesis never converted into a series, but then again if it had then Star Trek Phase II may have never started which became The Motion Picture.

And more NEWS, 50 years ago today The Twilight Zone Started it’s 5 year original run.

14. bill hiro - October 2, 2009

And for the sake of airing a differing opinion, I much prefer “Planet Earth” and John Saxon to “Genesis II” and Alex Cord. Especially regarding Saxon, he was just a great guy on TV in the ’70s – tough, likeable, charismatic, and a very physical actor who could really mix it up on screen (and pretty ubiquitous – the guy was all over the TV screen in those days). Saxon had some very Shatner-esque qualities and its a shame he was never a bigger star. And generally, I think “Planet Earth” just had more energy as compared to “Genesis II”. It had some juice to it, due mostly to John Saxon and Diana Muldaur. In some ways, its not unlike the differences between the two TOS pilots, with “The Cage” being more of the brainy side with a quieter and more reserved leading man, and “Where No Man Has Gone Before” being a lot more brawny with Shatner bringing his unique energy. Regardless, its going to be a real trip to have these on legit DVDs.

15. Horatio - October 2, 2009

Did you ever notice how Roddenberry seemed to have a thing for dominant strong women?

16. SupremeDalekOnTheBridge - October 2, 2009

Will these be making it across the Atlantic to the magical DVD Land known only as Region 2? Roddenberry has fans over here too you know!

We’re even getting Stargate Universe on Tuesday! Oh wait, wrong crowd…

17. SciFiMetalGirl - October 2, 2009

They’ll not fool me again! I’m waiting for the Blu-ray this time!!!

18. Lord Garth, Formerly of Izar - October 2, 2009

John Saxon!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Don’t F–k with Maskatron and Roeper!!!!

19. Andy Patterson - October 2, 2009

They’re mining the Rodenberry property vault. I have mixed feelings of whether or not they’ll ever develop the one existing property that never saw fruition.

That of course….Assignment: Earth

20. Comm. Lohman - October 2, 2009

15. Horatio – October 2, 2009
Did you ever notice how Roddenberry seemed to have a thing for dominant strong women?

Check out some of the episodes Roddenberry wrote for Have Gun Will Travel. It was a recurring theme even back then.

21. I'm Dead Jim - October 2, 2009

Does anyone know why Roddenberry was so attached to the name Dylan Hunt across these shows, including Andromeda? Is there a story there?

22. Captain Otter - October 2, 2009

Ahhhh Andromeda. After the first two seasons, I thought it might “grow up” into something good like TNG did. Alas, I was utterly disappointed.

23. SBC - October 2, 2009

Been a long time since I’ve seen either of these. I saw each of them a number of times in the late 70’s and early 80’s. A local station in L.A. would often show old things like this during the middle of the night (they owned the rights to this kinda stuff but knew they didn’t have much chance at drawing enough viewers to show them in better timeslots). As a kid I’d stay up late, or set my alarm to wake up and watch (every Sunday morning I’d scan the new tv guide for late night watching opportunities); a lot of fun and good memories. It’s a shame, really, that today local TV stations fill up the night with infomercials instead exposing new people to old shows like this (just another reason to hate infomercials!)

I remember liking Saxon and Planet Earth better, but really almost the only thing I remember storywise was Diana Muldaur only allowing the men to eat gruel. :) I also seem to remember, in one of the movies, a gang of marauders who had the TMP Klingon spiny scalps.

24. Ken1w - October 2, 2009

The character was called Dylan Hunt in Andromeda, because the overall story of Andromeda was similar to the story for those earlier pilots.

The hero is frozen in time, when there was “civilization.” At some much later time, the hero is revived to find that civilization (as he knew it) had fallen. It becomes his personal mission to restore civilization to the Earth/galaxy. I believe some of the other characters also had the same or similar names.

Andromeda was basically the third attempt to get the original Roddenberry concept produced as a TV series.

25. The Weary Professor - October 2, 2009

These are not regular DVD releases, but are part of the Warner Archive program and are made to order and sold through WarnerArchive.com. I have a couple of their releases and although they come in regular DVD cases they are basically purple DVD-R type burned disks, not regular silver or gold DVDs. There are a number of concerns about the longevity and quality of the Warner Archive disks. You may want to check some of the old Home Theater Forum posts on this topic before buying.

26. Frederick - October 2, 2009

I want to see a movie where John Saxon is pitted against Michael Ironside. How awesome would that be?

27. Moonwatcher - October 2, 2009

Another pilot turned into a short run series around the same time was Probe (aka Search). Not a Rodenberry show, but awesome none the less. The series featured secret agents that were wired for sight and sound which in turn were monitored by a Mission Control type crew, headed by the late great Burgess Meredith. Wish someone would pick that series up again! The show also had an extremely cool theme song.

28. Phasers On Stun - October 2, 2009

14- Bill

I totally agree. While I like both versions, I thought Planet Earth with Saxon was alot more fun and would have had a better chance of success. I remember seeing the original airing of Planet Earth and was excited that it would perhaps become a series. Didn’t know at the time that Planet of the Apes was the reason it didn’t go to series. But as a kid I enjoyed the Planet of the Apes series. Of course I can’t stand it know.

29. Jim Nightshade - October 2, 2009

yes Questor Tapes and Spectre both need to be on dvd too-blu-ray? I wonder if they were done on film or video tape only-but yes i will get the genesis2(not 1 number 7) dvd-i also loved roddenberrys women villains-and the bellybuttons-re andromeda-yeh hewitt used dylan hunt as the characters name it wasnt in the original andromeda treatment from roddenberry i think-lurch was also great in genesis2

30. Gorn Captain - October 2, 2009

28. They were all shot on film.

I really want to see Spectre come out. (Especially if it’s the racy European cut I’ve heard legends of!) It was certainly a forerunner to the X-Files. Maybe Fox will release it one of these days.

Keep in mind these titles are coming out through Warner’s new burn on demand program. They are actually DVD-R’s which some people might have trouble playing. Warner’s has been getting flack for using old video masters for some of their Archive titles, so let’s keep our fingers crossed for these to look good!

31. toddk - October 2, 2009

they both have the star trek TOS feel, I thought that the elevator door sound was from “i dream of jeannie” but the flashing light on the wall had TOS written all over it.

I have to admit that I watched the pilot to planet of the apes, and never watched the series after that, The show was missing key elements such as social change and apocolypse(like the movies) I also watched the cartoon of planet of the apes, didnt care for it.

On the other hand, I loved space 1999, especially the second season. But I find it hard to watch now because of the low production values.

There was a show that i would like to see again, I cant remember the name of it but it was about a neon hologram tron looking guy who had a cool neon car who would fight crime, It was on in 1981 or 1982…Inferman? perhaps….? anyways the show only aired a few times and was cancelled. anyways I’m rambling…

32. toddk - October 2, 2009

never mnd..it’s automan! thanks wiki!

33. TheBigCW - October 2, 2009

You know, all Gene did was “rip-off’ the basic concept of BUCK ROGERS.

34. bill hiro - October 2, 2009

Gorn Captail – I have the “racy” version of Spectre on a bootleg DVD and its not especially racy. Just some random boobs. But its a fairly entertaining show. Not especially innovative since its very much in the vein of Kolchak The Night Stalker and The Norliss Tapes from a few years earlier.

35. spock - October 3, 2009

the real question is when is somebody going to pick up and reinvent the six million dollar man. and i don’t mean the same sort of treatment the bionic woman got

36. Terpor - October 3, 2009

If you guys love post apocalyptic world so mutch then why haven’t you played Fallout 1.2 or 3

37. Captain Dunsel - October 3, 2009

#27 Moonwatcher – re: Probe/Search

Burgess Meredith was in that? During the control room scenes, I never managed to take my eyes off of Angel Tompkins! )

BTW, it also featured TOS vet Keith Andes (Akuta from “The Apple”) as “Dr. Barnett”, the higher-up head of “World Securites”

38. Captain Dunsel - October 3, 2009

In “Planet Earth”, the ongoing villains would have been the mutant “Kreeg Warriors”, who had ridged skulls – clearly the pre-cursors of the Klingon ridged foreheads as shown in Star Tre: The Motion Picture.

39. Dr. Image - October 3, 2009

Yes! Without question. The make-up was virtually identical to the TMP Klingons!
I too preferred the tone of Planet Earth over GII. Alex Cord came off as a big wimp and his voice bugged the hell out of me.
Still, I’ll probably get both. Roddenberry gets maligned, but the concepts of these shows indicate he always remained a forward- thinking and highly creative individual.
(Or maybe it was all the pot he smoked ;)

#27 Yes! With Tony Franciosa and two other guys rotating as the leads. Always hated that they changed the name from “Probe” to “Search,” though.
And that technology is now HERE. Time for a reboot, without question.

40. Dom - October 3, 2009

Given they were edited on film and (presumably) telecined-ed in HD prior to DVD encoding, you’d think they’d get a Blu-ray out there!

41. Imrahil - October 3, 2009

Man, I’m tired of seeing John Saxon’s package on the front page.

42. N - October 3, 2009

Why no Blu-ray? I never thought these would even come to DVD. I have old VHS transfers.

43. Andy Patterson - October 3, 2009

35

Yeah, I still have a soft spot for that show. I remember one cold Sunday night seeing a promo for it before it came on the air. Just a quick little spot that aired between whatever show my folks were watching. Seeing Lee Majors in a hospital gown standing in an elevator with the camera zooming in on a robot looking leg as the doors were closing.
“Next fall…the Bionic Man…. on ABC”…..I was hooked.

44. Capt Mike of the Terran Empire - October 3, 2009

I like Alex Cord better then Savage. I think he would have been a bigger star then he was if it can gone on to become a series. But at least Alex Cord did go on to be in Air Wolf and he did a great job there. Gene was a brilliant man and to bad the networks were not smart enough to either keep his shows on the air.(Star Trek) or give his new shows a real chance..

45. N - October 3, 2009

#14. I agree. I liked G2 better than PE. Even the set design looked better. Plus I like the Star Trek like uniforms that inspired ST:TNG uniforms. Even the Kreeg head bumps where reused by Roddenberry for the Klingons.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SmmTqfVLw6c

46. N - October 3, 2009

#45. Sorry I meant PE better than G2.

47. Jeff Bond - October 3, 2009

I always liked the Planet Earth cast better–you can’t go wrong with Ted Cassidy! Janet Margolin was also sexy and cute and Saxon was just more fun than the dour Cord who looked like a seventies porn star. But the Genesis II story was much more interesting than the condescending amazon story for Planet Earth and the design work and gadgetry (plus Mariette Hartley) still makes Genesis II watchable.

There’s a great-looking bootleg out there of Planet Earth so I would think they should be able to have a fine transfer of that show; the boots of Genesis II are horrendous so I’m REALLY looking forward to seeing what’s done with that.

48. SB - October 3, 2009

FYI…

Genesis II and Planet Earth were both done for Warner Brothers. The Questor Tapes was, I believe, done at Universal. So unless Universal Home Video decides to follow suit, we won’t be seeing it on disc.

49. Spockish - October 3, 2009

#31. toddk I do not remember that show or even herd of it, but you could always search the net for the enclapedia of Sci-Fi TV shows. And I recall a web site that had similar data. I have the movie not TV version of the book. At the time it covered upto Movie 8 of Star Trek.

I just viewed Star Trek – The Captains Summit (2009) last night. It was Whoopee interviewing Captain Kirk & Picard and First officers Spock and Riker sitting around a coffee table talking about TOS and TNG and Movies they did and shows & Movies Directed those that Stared in Star Trek shows as cast members.

Lenard Nimoy even stated one of his best moments in history was his assisted Presentation of STS Shuttle 101 Enterprise in 1976 with the entire cast of Star Trek. I remember that and the minor slip of I think Sulu about plans for Star Trek Phase II that never was born but evolved into Star Trek The Motion Picture after Star Wars infused live into the Sci-Fi movie genera.

The other fact is William Shatner acted Meek among the venue of Spock and the 3 TNG stars. Picard and Riker were more into other things and cared less about Sci-Fi, but after they got the jobs wanted to build a better base platform for the Original Enterprise Crew (they did not say Kirk or Spock but they were only looking right at them as they stated that.

Also Whoopee stated after telling Gene that she wanted to be part of the Crew, Gene and Berman created 10 Forward to give her a part. Gene also stated that the Enterprise-D felt as if it was missing parts, but as 10 Forward was added it started to seem more like a family to the writting staff.

The DVD was a Blue Ray in 720p made by CBS so I have to go to my friends PS3 to view it. But another friend said he’ll get me a MKV copy of it so I can burn it to a 480p DVD and watch it at my pleasure. I deserve a copy since I paid Amazon for the $30 BR-DVD.

50. magnumpc - October 3, 2009

#7: L-O-L!! :) I even heard it in the proper voice as I read it!

51. MC_Trekkie - October 3, 2009

Some interesting things about the works of Post-Trek Roddenberry- including some tidbits about Questor I was not familiar with:

http://www.tvparty.com/70roddenberry3.html

Yeah- Planet Earth – a second more action oriented pilot with a handsome action hero lead… less cerebral.

Sound familiar?

52. Magic_Al - October 3, 2009

Apparently George Lucas got all of Princess Leia’s hairstyles from Planet Earth? No seriously, I think he did.

^7. I laughed harder than I should have at that. :-D

53. Shatner_Fan_Prime - October 3, 2009

#48 … ” William Shatner acted Meek”

Now THAT I gotta see!

54. Tony Hardy - October 3, 2009

“Genesis 2″ should have been a series! We were robbed of that in the 1970s. It’s still a very viable series concept, and when you consider that shows like “Lost,” “Fringe,” “Heroes,” and “Fast Forward” are popular and doing well, then it would be a no brainer to get a well written show like “Genesis2″ going. Just stay true to the original concept and series bible, cast it well, get good writers, and you’ll have a winning show.

55. Spockish - October 3, 2009

I’d love to YouTube it but it is on retail sale currently and to post it is a profit reduction action, YouTube, CBS and Paramount would frown on it but make their law suit happy legal bwagles have big smiles. the best I could do is search Amazon and give you the order link. anything more I can not do.

The most dominering thing the Shat did was force Lenard to properly state what happened from his point of view, I forget over what though. Over all the Shat looks like he was there not by his first choice but by his events director. But he in indirect ways flirted with Whoopee when they talked about fans making physical contact with them to get attention. In summary they all said the best way to get there attention is $$$ and be attractive in your looks.

That lead into the topic of signing body parts. And Patric Steward said he refuses to do that. Shatner said what part of the body and what that leads to, you can guess what that ment and the gender it deals with. But Shatner boasted that he is a Red Blooded American Man, if you know what that means. About any one with more than a one digit age can figure that out.

56. Spockish - October 3, 2009

Can you picture back to the geoworld politics at the time Genesis was created, It was a post Atomic War time and humanity was rebuilding the Social Society, and the dream status of the liberal desire of everything is free when you have the federal government do almost everything for you. In other words an almost Logan’s Run with out the 30 year age limit.

It’s about time to dig out the old VHS tapes and VCR and watch all 13 shows of the Logan’s Run TV show. The tapes are jerky in motion and that’s why they are still tapes. Would love rematered DVD’s of the show.

Just remember the 1989 collapes of the USSR and the tearing down of the Berlin Wall erased much of the 70’s Sci-Fi pre and Post Atomic War stories. I remember seeing the wall crumble on my 7″ TV from my hospital bed at Graig Hospital. Small picture but it was color.

57. stephen russell - October 3, 2009

Love to see Genesis 2 made into a Full on Big screen movie.
Or IMAX.
& revamp the 70s era Tech for Todays & borrow Tech from
GI Joe
Transformers
Star Trek 2009 reboot?
& new cast or old cast in cameo roles or video.
Imagine PAX city Today & the Subshuttle ( now known as SALTER PLANETRAIN, see Science Digest 1980, Way too cool.
OR Genesis 2 on Sy Fy Channel for programming.

Love the idea then & same now, like the USS Enterprise NCC 1701
(never goes out of style, like Porsche 928).

& Earth Final Conflict can be a good Movie concept.

Radical.

Tuvie.com
YankoDesign.com can supply many Tech art projects for both Movie projects.

IE Old Pax used a ex Govt hidden base for its city, & PAX can use same nationwide or other underground sites.

Or Pax develops manned spaceflight again & Star Trek is “reborn”.

So many ways to go with this idea for Today.

58. Balok - October 3, 2009

I remember watching Genesis II and Planet Earth and thought they were okay. The unground high speed train was cool.

Never saw Strange New World, but just watched it Youtube. I can’t believe they stole TOS sound effects for this. Anyway, the episodes were woefully pitiful.

59. Grayson - October 3, 2009

THIS IS GREAT NEWS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anthony,

Just the other day I was considering e-mailing you that we should lobby the studios and try to get a Blu-ray release of Genesis II, Planet Earth, Spectre, The Questor Tapes, Police Story, and Pretty Maids All in a Row. It would be awesome if they were all boxed together, but I realize that would take extraordinary partnership between the studios. Also, we really need to get The Lieutenant on DVD/Blu-ray.

Thanks!

–Grayson

60. bill hiro - October 3, 2009

If we’re mining for Roddenberry obscurities, don’t forget “The Long Hunt of April Savage” with Robert Lansing from 1964-ish.

61. Moonwatcher - October 4, 2009

Also, if any one remembers there was a pilot during the early 70’s that was never made into a series called “Earth 2”. Featuring 2001 like special effects and staring both Gary Lockwood (of 2001 fame), and Tony Franciocsa…. (“Lockwood ….watch your back”… of the before mentioned “Probe/Search” series). The pilot dealt with a Chinese’s orbiting nuclear weapon and how the earth orbiting station dealt with it. Not that the show had that much potential but one must remember, at that time in the early 70’s, we were starved for any “adult” take on science fiction.

62. Jim Cude - October 4, 2009

Wish they had picked slightly more compelling clips though, these look fairly cheesy.

63. bill hiro - October 4, 2009

I think the clips are pretty representative of the tone of each show so … make of that what you will :-)

64. The Invader (In Color!) - October 4, 2009

The society run by women thing always seemed like Spock’s Brain redux to me. All those women needed were pain-giving devices and spaceships…

And what’s up with that pre-Leia double bun hairdo?

65. SB - October 4, 2009

Here’s a bit of interesting trivia…

There was actually a *third* version of Genesis II/Planet Earth which Gene Roddenberry had nothing to do with. It was called “Strange New World” and aired in 1975. My understanding is that Gene’s deal with Warner Brothers allowed them to do a third attempt at the basic premise without his involvement, and this was the result.

Warner Brothers kept the idea of scientists waking up on a greatly changed future Earth, the name PAX, and John Saxon… and that was it. (No Dylan Hunt this time.) PAX was now the name of an orbital space station where Saxon and his fellow explorers woke from suspended animation, thence to go down to Da World Uv Da Futcha and have all kinds of fascinating adventures.

Having seen the pilot when it was aired, I can attest that the adventures were pretty unfascinating. It was easily the worst of the three versions, and when this pilot failed too, Warner Brothers gave up.

66. SB - October 4, 2009

And, of course, after writing all that, I now see that “Strange New World” was already mentioned in the body of the original article. Sigh. Sorry, everyone.

67. Captain Dunsel - October 4, 2009

“Strange New World” was “Ark II” with lower production values… (grinning, ducking and running)

68. SB - October 4, 2009

67:

Hey! That’s an insult to Ark II! ;)

69. post apocalyptic movies - October 4, 2009

As a lifelong fan of all things post-apocalyptic. I’m a little stunned and embarrassed that this is the first I’ve ever heard of Genesis II. Dang! I needs this show, apparently!

70. Jorg Sacul - October 5, 2009

Now is the time to remake Assignment: Earth.

Kevin McKidd as Gary Seven, Kristen Bell as Roberta Lincoln. Use the cast from ST09 in the first couple minutes (the climax scene from the TOS episode) then go on from there with the series with Seven & Lincoln.

Yes, I *am* a genius. ;-)

71. Horatio - October 5, 2009

RE: Strange New World and Ark II

The Logans Run tv series was pretty much the same idea…. have some futuristic looking vehicle to drive around in and meet up with the plot of the week.

I was sooooo disappointed in the Logans Run TV series that I am, even 32 years later, still not over it!

And to just repeat myself yet again… I still love Genesis II!!

72. MC1 Doug - October 5, 2009

#31: “On the other hand, I loved space 1999, especially the second season.”

You loved season 2??? (at least you recognize it was not as good in later viewings)

Season two was unwatchable from the word go! ‘Dreck 1999′ season two was totally hijacked by Fred Freiberger’s ineptness as a producer. He did to S99S2 what he did to ST TOS season three, only worse.

I never got to see the second season until a few years ago, and I was angered by the nonsensical and horrid changes made to “improve” upon its first season failings.

The second season sucked!

It was like watching a totally new show without any of the British mysticism of season 1. The stories made no sense and lacked any depth (that’s not to say that the first season was Shakespeare); Maya was a total fantasy and went too far. Need a strongman, she turned into a brutish creature of strength; need stealth, she turned into a mouse. It was utter fanboy fantasy.

Gone was the cool theme song, And the loss of Victor Bergman, Paul Morrow and David Kano without any explanation further destroyed any continuity and this did the show absolutely no favors.

I was actually embarrassed for the lead actors. I can only imagine that Martin Landau, Barbara Bain and the rest of the cast wanted to hide when some of those episodes aired. Season two made Glen Larson’s ‘Buck Rogers in the 24th Century’ look like high art.

I never understood a need for the characters Tony and Maya. Any new character were cardboard cutouts; same said for its villains that came straight out of the 1930s sf serials.

‘Space 1999′ (season one) was one of those shows where you could enjoy it if you didn’t think too hard about some of its premises. Seriously, as has been countlessly pointed out, any explosion powerful enough to propel the moon not only out of orbit, but to other solar systems, would utterly pulverize the moon.

But season one was at least powered by some good performances, great guest stars, sets, superior special effects and it felt utterly British. Season two, however, felt like a Americanized version of a poor man’s ‘Doctor Who.’

Sometimes too much tinkering is (and was) not a good thing!

73. MC1 Doug - October 5, 2009

And to the subject at hand.

Yes!!! Finally ‘Genesis II’ on DVD! I prefer the first movie in the series of the three (I find the third one pretty unwatchable), but the second one okay too. I prefer Alex Cord’s Dylan Hunt.

The recent ‘Andromeda’s’ Dylan Hunt really was NOT Roddenberry’s Hunt, but in name only. Personally, I am not a fan of Kevin Sorbo and this series just did not feel like a Roddenberry concept in the least.

I definitely want to see ‘Spectre’ and ‘The Questor Tapes’ on DVD as well! Both were Roddernberry at (nearly) his best.

I do have to say, in my opinion, that none of these movies have aged particularly well. Roddenberry’s feminism slant is somewhat clumsily glaring now, but I appreciate that he took that approach back then.

Agreed: ‘Probe/Search’ would also be welcome on DVD.

74. Pat Gleeson - October 5, 2009

#16 One would hope thre is a region 2 release, as WBShop don’t ship to non US destinations.

75. MC1 Doug - October 5, 2009

While not a Roddenberry concept, the movie ‘Earth II’ had a number of TREK alum. I’d love to see it on DVD as well.

One particularly creepy footnote is the fact that the movie’s dilemma regarding a nuclear warhead falling from orbit would have impacted/detonated over my hometown (South Bend, IN).

That would definitely ruin one’s day.

76. Andy Patterson - October 5, 2009

70

Let’s go. I don’t know these actors you speak of but yes, they need to do it. And I want in.

77. bill hiro - October 5, 2009

Not that anyone cares, especially as its completely off topic, but I always thought both seasons of Space 1999 were equally bad, just for completely different reasons. Two things about the show, though, that I really liked – Barry Morse and the production design.

78. bill hiro - October 5, 2009

And back on-topic, the WB website is now offering both movies in a 2-for-1 deal that saves you 10 bucks. I’ve already placed my order.

79. Balok - October 5, 2009

Ha, if you want a real bad movie that’s fun to watch, try “Prince of Space”

80. Jorg Sacul - October 5, 2009

@Andy Patterson: Kevin McKidd was the lead in the ill-fated and stupidly cancelled series “Journeyman” on NBC, and Kristen Bell was the lead of Veronica Mars and also was on Heroes as Elle Bishop, the hyperspeed girl (and would make a superior, kick-ass Yeoman Janice Rand in a future Trek movie, too, ya hear me Powers-That-Be??)

81. kmart - October 5, 2009

Earth 2 had moron characters, like a wife who pushes an atom bomb into space because she sees the sun ‘out there’ and figures the bomb will just fall into it, but great vfx for its time.

Questor is actually a good flick, prob’ly becaue of Gene Coon’s rewrite,which gave them an antagonist who was someone with a sense of ethics and who was more admirable than the leads.

82. FrequencySpike - October 6, 2009

80 – Elle Bishop from “Heroes” was the electricity girl, the hyperspeed girl was Daphne Millbrook, played by Brea Grant.

83. ML31 - October 6, 2009

The following may come across as sacrilege to Trekdom….

But everything I have seen come from Roddenberry since Star Trek has been complete crap. This includes Genesis II. This led me to believe that Star Trek was a mistake from him. The one gem he came up with amid a pile of garbage.

There. I said it.

84. RD - October 6, 2009

#83. I’m not sure why what else Gene Roddenberry did has anything to do with Star Trek. Star Trek lives its own life, indeed Paramount more-or-less took it away from him. Honestly, I don’t see what one has to do with the other.

I more or less agree with you. In fact based on what he had written and developed before Star Trek, one has to wonder if the idea really was even his. I’ve never seen his first series, “The Lieutenant” or his failed pilot “APO 923″. But his writing in the 50s and early 60s was essentially about cops, westerns or the military. It would be interesting to see those efforts and determine if they were as good as Trek too.

It could well be Roddenberry was so frustrated by having his social commentary thwarted by regular dramatic television networks, that someone suggested sci-fi as a way around it and the rest is history.

85. bill hiro - October 6, 2009

Gene read science fiction growing up. That’s where the futuristic setting of Star Trek came from.

Speaking for myself, I’m not interested in Genesis II and Planet Earth because I think they’re brilliant television. I just think they’re entertaining.

86. Petitspock - October 6, 2009

This answers a question I always had about Andromeda: how much reworking of Rodenberry’s pilot script did they need to do to make the pilot work in 2000? Turns out none. I sounds like there was no Rodenberry script for Andromeda, just a crass use of the name and a few ideas for somebody else’s gain.

The last Andromeda I watched, was shortly after 911. It appeared that Kevin Sorbo, who was one of the producers by that time, was using a show with Rodenberry’s name to make political statements that didn’t seem very Rodenberry. I thought the least he could do was remove R’s name from the title of the show. Sorbo (or whoever was the source) has a right to his opinion, but the way he did it turned me off.

No I’m even more disappointed in the produces of this show. Seems they were banking on someone else’s buck from the beginning.

This post will surely tick off of a fan of the show somewhere. I’m not trying to pick a fight. It’s just the way I feel about it.

87. Petitspock - October 6, 2009

In the Genesis II clip, does anybody think the guy on the stretcher looks a little like Ron Moore?

88. RD - October 6, 2009

#85. Thanks for the reminder. No disrespect to Roddenberry, but with his penchant for revisionist history, and taking credit for other’s work, I merely wonder what the “real” story is. There’s no mention of Sci-Fi in his professional writing background until Trek (That I could find on the internet). One would think that he would have at least presented a script to the “Tales of Tomorrow”, “Science Fiction Theatre”. or “Twilight Zone” if his childhood sci-fi background had been that deeply ingrained. Then again, he was working his way into Hollywood through a particular genre and then as now, might have confused people had he started pitching sci-fi along with it. Either way hopefully someone more familiar with his documented past will elaborate.

89. Jerry - October 6, 2009

RE: SPACE: 1999. People seem to forget that in the first season, the characters DID question how they could have survived the explosion, and wondered if some force beyond even their comprehension as rational-minded scientists was guiding their fate. All of this was forgotten about in the second season but I thought the mystical SOLARIS feel of the thing worked in the first season.

As to ANDROMEDA, yes, there was no actual Roddenberry script like there was for EARTH: FINAL CONFLICT – they just reworked the concepts from GENESIS II. Basically, ANDROMEDA was “GENESIS II in space.”

90. Petitspock - October 6, 2009

‘ One would think that he would have at least presented a script to the “Tales of Tomorrow”, “Science Fiction Theatre”. or “Twilight Zone” ‘

Maybe not. For comparison, cosider Steven Moffat. IMDB shows that he mostly wrote comedy including episodes of “Coupling” and the British version of “The Office.” When he finally came to write science fiction, he penned some of the best episodes of the revived “Dr. Who” like “The Empty Child”/”The Doctor Dances”, “The Girl in the Fireplace”, “Blink”. All of those episodes are in my list of all time favorite genre episodes. Until 2005, there was no evidence that he had any serious interest in sci fi, much less that he was so good at it.

91. Petitspock - October 6, 2009

I’ll say one thing for the creators of Andromeda. They kept to the Roddenberry tradition of recycling character traits. Stoic first officer (Cage, TOS). Number One/Make it so/Engage (Cage, TNG). Will Decker/Will Riker. Deltan empath/Betazoid telepath. Past relationship between former and later.

92. bill hiro - October 6, 2009

“No I’m even more disappointed in the produces of this show. Seems they were banking on someone else’s buck from the beginning.”

I can only assume that one of the entities banking on that series was the Roddenberry Estate – particularly as Majel Barrett-Roddenberry was an executive producer for a couple of seasons.

93. Horatio - October 7, 2009

RE #92
Absolutely Majel was getting a cut of that show.

94. COMMANDER KEEN - October 7, 2009

@#7
“Look my backwards friend, Genesis may be Pilot forbidden but I’m damn well goin…….[ing to see it]”.

“Forgive me but your voice is carrying. I don’t you don’t want to talk about watching this pilot in public.”

“I’ll watch what I like! Who in the Hell are you?”

95. MrRegular - October 7, 2009

The second season of Space:1999 was a disaster–due to Fred Frieberger, the same guy who gave us the third season of TOS.
However, don’t knock the first season– especially the episode “Black Sun”. The episode is a masterpiece of televsion science fiction–depicting an encounter with the Supreme Being that takes the viewer along for an exalted mystical experience beyond time and space. Spectacular!

96. lao3d - October 8, 2009

This is great news! I remember being glued to the set when they premiered back in the day, and being crestfallen that there was no series to follow.

I wouldn’t hold out for blu-ray though, since the Warner Archive Collection is the studio’s means of making less “commercial” out-of-print titles available to niche audiences when no wide release is planned. It’s a print-on-demand DVD service, which are shipped in bare-bones packaging with no extras generally. Not the treatment we all might like, but better than nothing. And the source material is probably the best available. I’ll definitely be ordering these.

97. Movie_fan - November 9, 2009

I thought these movies were ok, not terrific, but good b movie pilots. I would have bought them, even burned copies if the price had been more reasonable. These movies in my opinion are not worth the 30.00 price tag. I guess I’ll stick to my over the air recorded vhs copies transferred to dvd. My price, 0.00

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