Tales Of Tomorrow: The Monsters

Tales Of TomorrowThe seventh episode of ABC’s science fiction anthology series, Tales Of Tomorrow, air on ABC, with each episode’s opening titles proclaiming that the series is produced “in cooperation with the Science-Fiction League of America”, a collective of sci-fi writers including Isaac Asimov and Theodore Sturgeon among its members. This episode, based on a story by Charles Sheckley, no longer remains in the archives and may be lost.

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Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea: Eleven Days To Zero

Voyage To The Bottom Of The SeaThe first episode of Irwin Allen’s adventure series Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea premieres on ABC, starring Richard Basehart and David Hedison, based on Allen’s 1961 movie of the same name. Eddie Albert guest stars in the series pilot, which was filmed in color, though the first season proper will be produced in black & white, and the pilot is broadcast in black & white as well.

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Lost In Space: Blast Off Into Space

Lost In SpaceThe 30th episode of Irwin Allen’s science fiction series Lost In Space premieres on CBS, starring Guy Williams, June Lockhart, and Jonathan Harris. This is the beginning of Lost In Space’s second season, and is the first episode of the series to be broadcast in color. Strother Martin guest stars.

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LedaAstronomer Charles Kowal discovers Leda, a tiny, previously undiscovered moon of Jupiter, using Mount Palomar Observatory’s telescope. With a radius of less than seven miles and an inclined orbit, Leda is the first Jovian moon discovered in over two decades, and is among the last to be discovered using ground-based telescopes in the 20th century.

Spider-Man comes to television

Amazing Spider-ManThe superhero TV movie-of-the-week Spider-Man airs on CBS, starring Nicholas Hammond (The Sound Of Music) and David White (Bewitched). Based on the Marvel comic of the same name, Spider-Man tells the origin story of Peter Parker, a young man who gains superpowers after being bitten by a radioactive spider. Heavily promoted at the height of the character’s comics popularity, the movie does well in the ratings, but due to its effects budget, CBS is only willing to approve a short run of hour-long episodes for the following year.

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Space Wars

Space WarsCinematronics introduces the first vector graphics arcade game, Space Wars, designed and programmed by Larry Rosenthal, using Rosenthal’s “Vectorbeam” technology. The game is based on the 1960s mainframe game Spacewar!. The high-resolution vector graphics technology, which offers better graphics (at the cost of limiting them to black & white displays), becomes an arcade mainstay as other manufacturers such as Atari and Sega begin using similar displays.

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Star Trek: TNG spawns more action figures

Captain Picard figureCompletely unrelated to the brief series of toys released by Galoob durign the show’s first season, Playmates Toys begins to release a larger-scale series of action figures based on Star Trek: The Next Generation in late 1992, as the series’ sixth season is launched (and has become a TV favorite). The initial assortment of ten characters, a combination of Enterprise crewmembers and enemies for them to fight, is released, complete with copious accessories to make them popular with kids. But Playmates – whose biggest toy license previously has been Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – quickly finds that it has a new hit toy line on its hands, but the buyers are older than anticipated.

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Magellan goes fourth at Venus

VenusNASA’s unmanned Magellan space probe, having completed three extensive campaigns of mapping the surface of Venus from orbit with cloud-penetrating radar, begins a fourth mission phase, this time sending constant engineering telemetry to Earth, where measurements of Doppler shift in the signal received allows Earthbound scientists to map the gravitational field of Venus. Magellan’s map-making days are over, having achieved a 98% complete map of the cloud-shrouded planet that it has been orbiting since 1990.

Welcome To Paradox: The Girl Who Was Plugged In

Welcome To ParadoxThe fifth episode of the Sci-Fi Channel original series Welcome To Paradox airs, a loosely-connected anthology of science fiction stories set in Betaville, a utopian future city whose incredible technology has frequently unintended side-effects. Samantha Ferris (The 4400) and Megan Leitch (The X-Files) star in a story based on the work of author “James Tiptree Jr.” (the pseudonym of late SF author Alice Bradley Sheldon).

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Kaguya lifts off

KaguyaThe Japanese space agency, JAXA, launches the unmanned SELENE (Selenological and Engineering Explorer) spacecraft to orbit Earth’s moon. SELENE is nicknamed Kaguya after a princess of the moon from Japanese folklore. Kaguya is scheduled to enter a polar lunar orbit in October, where it will conduct experiments in spectography, radio science, and charged particle and gamma ray detection. Though Kaguya has an on-board camera to map lunar terrain, the views for which it will become most famous will be shot by two HDTV cameras supplied by Japanese television network NHK, providing spectacular views of the lunar surface as they would be seen by an orbiting explorer.