Saturday, November 14, 2015
Saturday Morning Cult-TV Blogging: Jason of Star Command: "Chapter 7: Marooned in Time" (October 21, 1978)
In Jason of Star Command (1978-1980), Chapter 7, “Marooned in Time,” Jason (Craig Littler), Nicole (Susan Pratt), and Professor Parsafoot (Charlie Dell) find themselves trapped in Dragos’ (Sid Haig) pocket dimension, a “strange, out of time place” called “The Limbo of the Lost.”
There, on a strange planetoid, they see strange figures from different time periods, and encounter Captain Kidd (Brendan Dillon), who promptly puts them in stockades. Jason offers a trade, Wiki for freedom, but Kidd takes Wiki and flees, hoping to use the robot to open Dragos’ treasure chest.
When a beam freezes Kidd, Jason and the others, having escaped, come to his rescue, and use the resources in the treasure (gold, platinum and so forth), to power-up the Star Fire and escape the planet.
They get away just in time, as the planet explodes. Then, in space, Dragos attacks, and traps the star fire in an electron storm.
Jason of Star Command veers towards Lost in Space (1965-1968) camp storytelling in “Marooned in Time,” an episode which finds the dramatis personae encountering the colorful pirate, Captain Kidd.
A larger-than-life character, who seems to accept reality of life in our far future, Kidd walks the line between villain and ally, and tags along with Jason in the gang in the upcoming episode “Attack of the Dragons.”
Still, one gets the feeling that not all the story details have been well-ironed out, or thought-through. As the episode begins, Jason and the others see other denizens of the Limbo of the Lost, including an Old West cowboy and a cave-man. Additionally, some of Captain Kidd’s men capture Jason, Nicole and Parsafoot by tossing a net over them.
Later, however, Kidd reveals he is the only denizen of the Limbo and the Lost. The others are illusions crated by Dragos.
Even the ones who threw the net? Who trapped Jason? How exactly does that work? Was the net illusion? Or did illusions find themselves able to move and manipulate matter (the net…)?
On the other hand, I like how the episode depicts Jason, and his resourcefulness. While in stockades, he notes “when you can’t use your hands, use your head,” and pulls a splinter out of the stockade wood with his mouth. He then uses it to pick the lock of the stockade. This is a nice old-fashioned solution to a problem, especially in this high-tech world.
Next week: “Attack of the Dragons.”