SEARCH '70s television series....

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Warped9, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. Vendikarr

    Vendikarr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    From what I remember, Doug McClure came across the best of the three leads. They tried to keep all three in the same mold, but McClure had a charm to him where he didn't seem as bad as the other two.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    ^Sounds like it might've been the same kind of deal as Maverick, where the scripts were written generically so that they could be assigned to either of the alternating lead actors as convenient, and only the actors' performances differentiated the characters.
     
  3. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    I'm wondering if maybe this show is something that really engaged me as a youth, but mightn't bear close scrutiny in a revisit. A couple of years ago I revisited the first two seasons of the Six Million Dollar Man and I was struck by how much of it still worked. The only things I felt really dated it were the fashions of dress and sometimes the pacing. Otherwise mostly all good.

    As Christopher has mentioned upthread you're best to just skip the two telefilms that followed the pilot before the series---just horrible. The original pilot film, though, is quite good.


    Several years ago there was a series called Now And Again with Eric Close, Dennis Haysbert and Margaret Colin that was something of a SMDM reboot. It started out promisingly then petered out in lacklustre fashion. Too bad.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FG4fRkQO0O4
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2014
  4. Mistral

    Mistral Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It probably got tossed into the same box as your Lancelot Link: Secret Chimp lunchbox and your Evil Knievel action figure. :rofl:
     
  5. Vendikarr

    Vendikarr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Some things are better off left in the 70s.
     
  6. Klaus

    Klaus Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Hey, I have the Lancelot Link band's album on my iPod. :D
     
  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    You know what show would really have benefitted from adopting this show's approach? Star Trek: TNG. I mean, Bob Justman did produce it, so he could've brought this concept in. Really, it makes sense. Instead of having the away team out of contact with the ship except when they call in on an audio device, you should have them under constant audio and video monitoring from the bridge, with the captain and bridge crew directly supervising them just like Cam and the support team here. Heck, I had that idea myself back in the '80s -- the starship I designed for my planned original SF included a large mission-ops facility behind the bridge which would be constantly monitoring everything the survey teams did and providing expertise as needed. I'd never seen Search at that point, but what I envisioned was uncannily like this, albeit on a larger scale.

    And you know what? That made me realize something. Search came out in 1972, while the Apollo Lunar missions were ongoing (as the sample episode makes clear). So TV audiences would've spent years watching NASA Mission Control supervising the astronauts every step of the way. That's what inspired my "mission ops center" idea over 15 years later, and I bet it's what directly inspired this series at the time. Leslie Stevens may have looked at what Mission Control was doing and thought, "What if we did that, but for spy/adventure stories on Earth?"

    It's a shame (for quite a few reasons) that the space program subsided from the public consciousness to the point that when TNG and its successors came along, they adopted a far more antiquated model of team supervision.
     
  8. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    This is a good point and it is something I've seen used in some SF novels (although their names escape me for the moment).
     
  9. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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  10. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    I just finished watching Probe, the film-for-TV pilot for the series that would be called Search.

    Overall I rate it a 3 out of 5 even though I quite enjoyed watching it.

    First off it's quite a product of its era, the early '70s. That's not meant as a slam. I mean that in the sense of how the story is told. I would have appreciated more variety in the scoring because hearing the same theme music used so often got to be somewhat tiresome.

    The transfer on the DVD is quite good---thankfully because there is no Blu-Ray option available (same for the series set for which I'm awaiting delivery).

    Conceptually thie idea behind this is fascinating and truly way ahead of its time. It would be perfectly suitable today, but back in the early '70s it was pure science fiction that a field agent could have anudio implant, dental implant signaling device and a portable miniaturized camera/scanner that could also read body functions not only of the agent but of others nearby, much like a Star Trek tricorder reading life signs.

    The other neat twist is that the agent doesn't work for the government, but for a securities agency that recovers lost or stolen items and people. Something of a very high-tech insurance recovery operation.

    Most of the writing isn't bad even if largely straightforward. There is something of a Bondian sensibilitity which is most apparent in the performance of Hugh O'Brian as PROBE agent Hugh Lockwood. He depicts something of an Americanized Bond impersonation but without the smooth delivery of Sean Connery or Roger Moore. O'Brian is just a touch too broad and overdone for my taste. He makes me think of how a bit too smarmy Wil Riker could be in early TNG. This is also emphasized by a script that can be a bit dodgy and stilted at time.

    It's still rather entertaining, but the ending is a bit anti-climactic. It makes sense but it's quite lowkey.

    I remember this being quite entertaining back when I was 13, but it's just a touch underwhelming forty years later.

    Yep, a 3 out of 5, but I love the concept. I'm still looking forward to the series.
     
  11. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    Two things I learned recentl.

    1. Robert Justman apparently worked on this series until about midway through the run.

    2. The show was syndicated in other markets, but not in the U.S. I find that odd given we got to see it in Canada.
     

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