Saturday, January 02, 2016
Saturday Morning Cult-TV Blogging: Jason of Star Command: "Chapter 14: Peepo on Trial" (December 9, 1978)
In “Peepo on Trial,” Space Academy/Star Command falls into a Galactic Typhoon, while Peepo – under the sway of Dragos (Sid Haig) sabotages the planetoid’s engines at a critical moment.
Jason (Craig Littler) uses W1k1 to stop Peepo, and Professor Parsafoot (Charlie Dell) attempts to undo Drago’s reprogramming. The poor bot has had his “circuits poisoned,” according to Parsafoot.
Meanwhile, The Academy must attempt a risky move, going to extreme speed in hopes of blasting through the typhoon. The maneuver is attempted, and Space Academy survives the danger!
We get more derring-do and cliff-hanging excitement in this installment of Jason of Star Command (1978-1980), but not much else. W1k1 again saves the day and -- title aside -- there’s no actual trial here for Peepo.
The most memorable aspect of this brief segment, perhaps, is James Doohan’s role as Commander Canarvin. Here, the character begins talking about the Academy’s engines and how they were never designed for such “extreme speed.” This is all very deja-vu, and brings to mind many such moments on Star Trek involving Scotty.
The threat of the week is a “galactic typhoon,” a kind of space storm, and exactly the kind of space phenomenon that was featured prominently in many sci-fi TV series of the 1970s. In Space: 1999’s “The Séance Spectre,” for example, Moonbase Alpha encountered a space “weather belt,” and in the original Star Trek, Spock’s shuttle was briefly lost in the storm-like quasar in “The Galileo 7.”
Next week “The Trojan Horse.”