Saturday, March 21, 2015

Saturday Morning Cult-TV Blogging: Bigfoot and Wildboy: "White Wolf"

In “White Wolf,” a sneaky veterinarian’s assistant, Tom (Brian Farrell) concocts a spray that can control animals and people.

He tests it on an old white wolf, Smoky, who then bites a local teen, Doug (Christopher Knight).

Soon, Doug begins transforming into a werewolf, showing the same signs of aggression infecting Smoky. 

Bigfoot and Little Boy team up with Dr. Stewart (Ed Peaker) to reverse the effects of the formula…

Here’s another strange and yet wholly enjoyable episode of Bigfoot and Wildboy. In “White Wolf,” Peter from The Brady Bunch (1969 – 1973) -- Christopher Knight -- gets infected by a wolf-bite and becomes an angry werewolf boy. 

The only problem is that there are virtually no make-up effects to chart his transformation. Instead, Knight's Doug simply grows hairy hands, or paws. 

And we all know why a guy grows hair on his hands, right?

The cool part of this story, however, is watching a Brady Bunch kid armed with the equivalent of bionic powers. Doug picks up a boulder in slow motion photograph, for example, and so there’s the inescapable feel here of The Brady Bunch meets The Six Million Dollar Man by way of Sid and Marty Krofft…and, naturally, on the cheap.

Also quite strange here is the nature of the weekly villain. A meek vet’s assistant -- the anonymous sounding Tom -- creates a formula to bend animals to his will, all while working at a little local office in the woods near Bigfoot and Wild Boy. 

I guess even evil geniuses have to start somewhere.

Alas, there are no further complete episodes of Bigfoot and Wildboy currently available for review, so this retrospective is complete, for the time being, after just four episodes (“Abominable Snowman,” “Amazon Contest,” Prisoner from Space” and “White Wolf.”) 

Based on these episodes, Bigfoot and Wildboy is cheaply-made, strange, and a heck of a lot of fun.  I’d love to see the whole series released on DVD or blu-ray. Some episodes, like “Amazon Contest” and “Prisoner from Space,” in particular, are really inventive and bizarre.

Next week, I’ll veer over to cover one episode of Mystery Island (1977)…again, the only one available.

The following week, I’ll begin reviewing the extant episodes of a childhood favorite: Run Joe Run (1974 - 1976). Once more, only about four episodes are available for review, but hopefully the series – basically The Fugitive with a German shepherd -- will be worth a re-visit.

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