The Deadly Dust Part 1

Amazing Spider-Man (1970s series)Peter’s nuclear physics instructor stirs up controversy by acquiring weapons-grade plutonium oxide to use in a small experimental reactor on campus. This attracts the attention of numerous parties, from some would-be anti-nuclear activitist classmates of Peter’s, to domestic terrorists who want to hold the entire population of the Big Apple to a ransom. The plutonium is quickly stolen, and worse yet, the police blame Spider-Man for stealing the plutonium. Complicating things further is a national magazine reporter who wants to follow Peter around since he’s the only person who seems to be close to Spider-Man. Just when the world needs Spider-Man the most, there are too many eyes on Peter Parker for him to become his alter-ego.

written by Robert Janes
directed by Ron Satlof
music by Stu Phillips

Amazing Spider-ManCast: Nicholas Hammond (Peter Parker / Spider-Man), Robert F. Simon (J. Jonah Jameson), Chip Fields (Rita Conway), Michael Pataki (Captain Barbera), Joanna Cameron (Gail Hoffman), Robert Alda (Mr. White), Randy Powell (Craig), Sid Clute (Inspector DeCarlo), Steven Anderson (Ted), Anne Bloom (Carla), Herb Braha (LeBeau), Leigh Kavanaugh (Linda), Ron Hajek (Salesman), David Somerville (Singer), Gail Jensen (Singer), Walt Davis (Helicopter Repairman), Barbara Sanders (Waitress), Jerry Martin (Doorman)

Amazing Spider-ManNotes: Apparently the demands of being Spider-Man have led Peter to move out of Aunt May’s house; he has his own apartment in New York City. Guest star Joanna Cameron was previously best known for the role of Isis in Filmation’s live-action series The Secrets of Isis (a character she also played in several crossover appearances on Filmation’s other live-action superhero series, Shazam!). Robert F. Simon takes over the role of Daily Bugle editor J. Jonah Jameson as of this episode, while Chip Fields makes her first appearance as Jameson’s secretary, Rita.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Episode 5 (Fit The Fifth)

Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy: Primary PhaseThe computer bank behind which Zaphod, Ford, Trillian and Arthur are hiding on Magrathea blows up, but instead of killing them, the explosion propels them millions of years forward in time. They awaken in Milliway’s, the Restaurant at the Edge of the Universe, which was constructed on the ruins of Magrathea eons later. It also turns out that Marvin is there too, though he took the long way, remaining on Magrathea for millennia until Milliway’s was built. Not keen on staying at Milliway’s long enough to be found by the police – to whom, presumably, a few millennia make no difference – Zaphod decides to steal a particularly sleek black ship that has been parked in the restaurant’s docks.

Order this CDwritten by Douglas Adams and John Lloyd
directed by Alick Hale-Munro
music by Paddy Kingsland

Cast: Peter Jones (The Voice of the Book), Antony Sharpe (Garkbit / Zarquon), Roy Hudd (Compere’), Simon Jones (Arthur Dent), Geoffrey McGivern (Ford Prefect), Mark Wing-Davey (Zaphod Beeblebrox), Susan Sheridan (Trillian), Stephen Moore (Marvin)

Vanessa 38-24-36

QuarkQuark is ordered to relinquish command of his ship to Dr. Evans’ new Vanessa 38-24-36 computer, which, according to Evans, can make all the decisions that a starship captain would encounter correctly and more quickly than any human. Unknown to either Quark or his superiors, however, Vanessa has been programmed with utter contempt for the human crew she is intended to replace. But since Quark’s crew has already forsaken him for the easy luxury of serving on a ship run entirely by Vanessa, the computer faces little opposition. She begins creating incidents designed to prove Quark’s inferiority, but this simply emboldens him to take action and remove Vanessa from the ship. Then Quark discovers that Vanessa is also programmed to defend herself…

written by Robert A. Keats
directed by Hy Averback
music by Perry Botkin, Jr.

Cast: Richard Benjamin (Adam Quark), Timothy Thomerson (Gene/Jean), Richard Kelton (Ficus), Tricia Barnstable (Betty), Cyb Barnstable (Betty), Conrad Janis (Otto Palindrome), Alan Caillou (The Head), Marianne Bunch (Dr. Evans), Bobby Porter (Andy)

QuarkNotes: An episode which spoofed the Star Trek episode The Ultimate Computer and Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: a space odyssey in equal measure, this was the final episode of Quark to air on NBC. Even if the series had been picked up for a second season, that season would have seen at least one major casting change: actor Richard “Ficus” Kelton passed away in November 1978, mere months after this episode aired.

Quark’s pet Ergo puts in his first and only appearance since the pilot episode; while watching the episodes in rapid succession on DVD doesn’t make this seem very odd, it had been over a year since the creature’s previous appearance and audiences in the pre-VCR/DVR age had likely forgotten it.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Deadly Dust Part 2

Amazing Spider-Man (1970s series)Mr. White has stolen the home-made bomb created by Peter’s anti-nuclear protestor classmates with plutonium stolen from the college. White retreats back to his home turf in Los Angeles, leaving Peter to use fellow reporter Gail Hoffman as an excuse to travel cross-country (on the Daily Bugle’s dime). He has a plan to track White, and find and defuse the crude atomic bomb before it can take out a major population center, but along the way, observant reporter Gail asks Peter a critical question: is he Spider-Man?

written by Robert Janes
directed by Ron Satlof
music by Stu Phillips

Amazing Spider-ManCast: Nicholas Hammond (Peter Parker / Spider-Man), Robert F. Simon (J. Jonah Jameson), Chip Fields (Rita Conway), Michael Pataki (Captain Barbera), Joanna Cameron (Gail Hoffman), Robert Alda (Mr. White), Randy Powell (Craig), Sid Clute (Inspector DeCarlo), Steven Anderson (Ted), Anne Bloom (Carla), Herb Braha (LeBeau), Leigh Kavanaugh (Linda), Ron Hajek (Salesman), David Somerville (Singer), Gail Jensen (Singer), Walt Davis (Helicopter Repairman), Barbara Sanders (Waitress), Jerry Martin (Doorman)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Episode 6 (Fit The Sixth)

Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy: Primary PhaseThe ship that Zaphod has “borrowed” turns out to be the personal command cruiser of the admiral of a Haggunenon battlefleet. The ship, like its Haggunenon admiral, is organic and evolves rapidly, often over lunchtime. Before long, it becomes quite an inhospitable environment for Zaphod, Ford, Trillian and Arthur, and they’re forced to bail out in escape pods, though only Ford and Arthur actually escape. Thanks to Arthur punching a button, their escape pod travels millions of years backward in time, arriving aboard a Golgafrincham Space Ark. Supposedly, this ship – containing vacuum-frozen hairdressers, TV producers, salespeople and other middle-class members of Golgafrincham society – is one of three evacuation craft escaping the death of the Golgafrincham solar system. Or at least, that’s what its occupants have been told – in actuality, they’ve been sent away from their world while the rest of their planet’s population has a bit of a laugh. The Ark crashes into a primitive world, and its clueless occupants try to form a new society. Ford and Arthur investigate the planet on which they may now be marooned for the rest of their lives, only to find that they’ve been there before.

Order this CDwritten by Douglas Adams and John Lloyd
directed by Alick Hale-Munro
music by Paddy Kingsland
(featuring “What A Wonderful World” by Louis Armstrong)

Cast: Peter Jones (The Voice of the Book), Simon Jones (Arthur Dent), Geoffrey McGivern (Ford Prefect), Mark Wing-Davey (Zaphod Beeblebrox), Susan Sheridan (Trillian), Stephen Moore (Marvin), Beth Porter (Marketing girl), Jonathan Cecil (Number One / Management consultant), David Jason (Captain / Caveman), Aubrey Woods (Number Two / Hairdresser)

Scavenger Hunt

Man From AtlantisOn a remote island, a maiden is sacrificed by a primitive tribe to an unearthly beast in a coastal cave. The Cetacean is sent to investigate the seafloor near this island, searching for something completely unrelated, but the trail leads Mark ashore and into contact with the natives. Their tribal leader is determined to cast Mark out as a demon, while Mark patiently tries to prove otherwise. When he, too, is taken to the cave as a sacrifice, he meets the creature that lives there, and discovers the real devil in the details: unscrupulous treasure-hunter Captain Jack Muldoon has set himself up as the local tin god, on the receiving end of maidens and valuable finds alike.

written by Peter Allen Fields
directed by David Moessinger
music by Fred Karlin

Man From AtlantisCast: Patrick Duffy (Mark Harris), Belinda J. Montgomery (Dr. Elizabeth Merrill), Alan Fudge (C.W. Crawford), Ted Neeley (Jack Muldoon), Ted Cassidy (Canja), Tony Urbano (Oscar), Eugenia Wright (Trivi), Yabo Obien (Toba), Richard Laurance Williams (Jomo), J. Victor Lopez (Chuey), Jean Marie Hon (Jane)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Curse Of Rava

Amazing Spider-Man (1970s series)A museum endowed by J. Jonah Jameson’s late wife becomes the center of controversy when it prepares to open an exhibit devoted to a rare statue of Rava, a god worshipped by a cult-like following in the Middle Eastern country of Kalistan. The statue is being watched closely by Mandak from Kalistan, who insists that all who view the visage of Rava be respectful, lest they invite the wrath and the legendary curse of Rava. He intimidates the museum’s director with a display of that wrath, which is fearsome enough to convince the director that he’s witnessed a supernatural event; he immediately petitions Jameson to cancel the exhibit. Peter Parker goes to photograph the exhibit, but soon has to duck out of sight and make an appearance as Spider-Man to try to break up an increasingly violent protest in front of the museum. An argument between Jameson and the museum director happens curiously close to a vicious attack that leaves the director in a coma, and Captain Barbera considers Jameson the prime suspect. Spider-Man must put an end to the incidents of violence…and Peter has to clear his boss’ name.

teleplay by Robert Janes
story by Robert Janes and Dick Nelson
directed by Michael Caffey
music by Stu Phillips

Amazing Spider-ManCast: Nicholas Hammond (Peter Parker / Spider-Man), Robert F. Simon (J. Jonah Jameson), Chip Fields (Rita Conway), Michael Pataki (Captain Barbera), Theodore Bikel (Mandak), Byron Webster (Professor John Rustin), Adrienne Larussa (Trina Pandit), David Ralphe (Dr. Keller), John Calvin (Security Guard)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Imp

Man From AtlantisA strange, playful imp boards the Navy’s Triton 1 undersea research station, and everyone with whom he comes into physical contact reverts to a childlike state of mind. By the time Mark reaches Triton 1, only one crewmember is left alive, and he is taken back to shore via the Cetacean. But Moby has followed the Cetacean back to its base, and proceeds to reduce the crew and staff there to mental children. Only Mark is immune, with Moby keeping him at arm’s length because Mark is a “down there person” instead of an “up there person”. Moby wants to see more of the surface and its inhabitants and to bring them joy. Moby especially wants to visit a remarkable place he has heard of, known as the Pentagon. Only Mark is left to stop him.

written by Shimon Wincelberg
directed by Paul Krasny
music by Fred Karlin

Man From AtlantisCast: Patrick Duffy (Mark Harris), Belinda J. Montgomery (Dr. Elizabeth Merrill), Alan Fudge (C.W. Crawford), Dick Gautier (Duke), Pat Morita (Moby), James Ingersoll (Triton Officer), Mel Scott (Davis), Lyman Ward (Clavius), Larry Breeding (O’Toole), William Benedict (Guard), Harvey J. Goldenberg (Man), Allen Joseph (Shop Owner), Richard Laurance Williams (Jomo), J. Victor Lopez (Chuey), Jean Marie Hon (Jane), Anson Downes (Allen)

Man From AtlantisNotes: This is the final appearance of series regular Belinda J. Montgomery; the character of Dr. Merrill is not seen in the two remaining episodes of the series, but is mentioned in dialogue in the next episode. An attempt was made to create a replacement character in the following episode, but the series’ time had run out, and star Patrick Duffy was already auditioning for a role in an upcoming prime time drama, Dallas. This also marks the final Man From Atlantis appearance of Cetacean crew background regulars Jean Marie Hon and Anson Downes.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Night Of The Clones

Amazing Spider-Man (1970s series)Peter is assigned to take pictures at a press conference involving a revolutionary new cloning technique. A frog is cloned at this public demonstration, but Peter can’t get Dr. Moon, the scientist behind this cloning procedure, to answer whether or not the process could clone a human being. Secretly, Dr. Moon is already working on that, though his first test subject – himself – has proven to be problematic… and now Moon has decided that he wants to clone Spider-Man.

written by John W. Bloch
directed by Fernando Lamas
music by Stu Phillips

Amazing Spider-ManCast: Nicholas Hammond (Peter Parker / Spider-Man), Robert F. Simon (J. Jonah Jameson), Chip Fields (Rita Conway), Michael Pataki (Captain Barbera), Lloyd Bochner (Dr. Moon), Morgan Fairchild (Lisa Benson), Rick Traeger (Dr. Reichman), Irene Tedrow (Aunt May), John Finnegan (Male Reporter), Karl Swenson (Dr. Carl Benson), Vince Howard (Elevator Inspector), Alex Rodine (Dr. Keyta), Debi Fries (Girl Reporter), Larry Levine (Desk Clerk)

Amazing Spider-ManNotes: This marks Aunt May’s first appearance in the weekly series, but her memory may be going – she says Peter has an “Uncle Max”, not an Uncle Ben. (Maybe Max was his other uncle…whose old Halloween costume happened to wind up in Aunt May’s attic?) This episode also marks the first time that the villain of the week pieces together Spider-Man’s true identity (not that it helps him – the secret dies with him). Guest star Morgan Fairchild had already made numerous daytime TV appearances, but this episode of The Amazing Spider-Man is a very early entry in her resume of prime-time drama guest roles.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

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