Mego snags Buck Rogers toy license

Twiki figureStill stinging from the business decision to not bid on the Star Wars toy rights in 1977, toy maker Mego International grabs the license for Universal Studios and NBC’s upcoming science fiction series Buck Rogers In The 25th Century while the show is still in the earliest stages of pre-production. This lead time, unusual in the late ’70s toy business, will become more common in later years; Mego has action figures and vehicles ready to ship when the series premieres in late 1979.

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The Flash: Alpha

The FlashThe 21st episode of the superhero series The Flash, based on the DC Comics character, airs on CBS, starring John Wesley Shipp and Amanda Pays. Sven-Ole Thorson (Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future) guest stars.

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E:FC: The Joining

Earth: Final ConflictThe national syndication window opens for the 22nd episode of the posthumous Gene Roddenberry science fiction series Earth: Final Conflict, bringing the series’ first season to a close. (Though the 21st to air, the show’s distributor, Tribune Entertainment, is holding the 20th episode back to air during the July ratings sweeps.) The marks the final regular appearance of series star Kevin Kilner, who would be replaced in the upcoming second season; he would later make a few guest appearances in the fifth season.

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Buffy The Vampire Slayer: The Prom

Buffy The Vampire SlayerThe 53rd episode of Joss Whedon’s supernatural series Buffy The Vampire Slayer, starring Sarah Michelle Gellar, airs on the WB network. Anthony Stewart Head, David Boreanaz, and Alyson Hannigan also star. Alexis Denisof (Angel) guest stars.

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Douglas Adams, writer, dies

Douglas AdamsDouglas Adams, the creator of the insanely popular (and maniacally funny) Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy franchise – spanning two seasons of BBC radio series, five novels, a game and a brief TV series – dies suddenly of a heart attack in his California home at the age of 49. Adams created the Guide in 1978 as a radio series, and the subsequent “trilogy” of five books sold over 14 million copies worldwide. Recently, Adams had been working on H2G2, a cyberspace version of the Guide (to which visitors could add their own entries), as well as collaborating with Austin Powers director Jay Roach on an upcoming movie version of the story. Mr. Adams is survived by his wife Jane and a six-year-old daughter.

STS-125: last stop at Hubble

Space ShuttleSpace Shuttle Atlantis lifts off on the 126th shtutle flight, the final servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope (and the only post-Columbia flight not to visit the International Space Station). The repairs and upgrades conducted during a series of spacewalks will extend Hubble’s operation life through at least 2014. Aboard Atlantis for her 30th flight are Commander Scott Altman, Pilot Greg Johnson, and mission specialists John Grunsfeld, Michael Massimino, Andrew Feustel, Michael Good and Megan McArthur. This mission was nearly cancelled in light of post-Columbia flight rules requiring all shuttle flights to visit the space station.

Syfy cancels The Expanse

The ExpanseIn the midst of the show’s third successful season, cable broadcaster Syfy surprises fans of The Expanse by announcing the show’s cancellation; the decision is made not due to ratings, but due to post-broadcast distribution rights on streaming services, rights which are controlled by the production company and not Syfy. A fan campaign begins to find a new home for the series, with Netflix and Amazon Prime seen as the best contenders to rescue the show.