Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Video Vault of Mora Tau! 3/15/12

It has certainly been a while since we've made a full visit to the VVoMT, but at long last here we are again - what video clips should we take a look at?

With the success of the recent TenList post that showed shortlived TV shows that were adaptations of feature films, I think we'll track down some truly forgotten TV shows that I loved - three or four shows that ran 8 or 9 or 13 episodes and disappeared, almost never to be seen again.

Who remembers Wizards and Warriors - 8 episodes somewhere around 1983 or 1984?

This was a fantastically fun tongue in cheek fantasy adventure series - perhaps the best work from the erratic Mr. Conaway - and solid support from everyone else, including my first run-ins with Julia Duffy and Duncan Regehr.

How about Masquerade - 9 episodes, 1986?

With my Bond mania in full gear, here comes a TV show that mashes up Mission: Impossible with The Love Boat - giving us the terrific Rod Taylor as aging spy Lavender, who can't get a mission completed successfully, because all of his agents are known to America's enemies and their newfangled computers. So, he comes up with Operation: Masquerade - a team of ordinary Americans - each recruited for some special skill - who together pull off a spy mission in some exotic foreign land under the guise of an American tour group. The citizens get a year's pay for a few days of spy work, along with a free trip to whereever. Oh, sure, they might end up in deadly danger - but come on! Did you hear him? He said "Come spy with me!" That's so cool! And you get Kirstie Alley and Greg Evigan as the younger spies in support!

Or Disney presents The 100 Lives of Black Jack Savage - 3 or 4 episodes, 1991?

I watched this one because it was a Stephen Cannell show - it was from Disney (despite an opening depicting the hanging of one of the leads 100 years ago!), and it starred my Hardcastle and McCormick fave Daniel Hugh Kelly. I now see it also marked my first sight of Ms. Roma Downey, who was to step into my life three short years later for a memorable two weeks (who says I can't tease upcoming posts like a particular I Was A Teenage Production Assistant entry?)

But I digress.

The plot of the show was that Daniel Hugh Kelly was a corporate raider type exiled to a tiny Caribbean nation by a higher power. Bereft of most of his ill-gotten riches, he has to struggle to survive. He chases local beauty Roma Downey romantically, and also has to deal with the local police commissioner - a little jackwagon as corrupt as he is sawed-off; and the ghost of a long dead pirate, sent back to Earth to make good on the 100 lives he took while alive - by saving the lives of 100 people with the help of his new buddy, (say it with me now) the only one who can see him. Luckily they have Black Jack Savage's ghostly powers, and the rich guy's sleek power boat - of course there's an ultra cool vehicle - this is a Stephen Cannell show - and there's also a resident gadget master who helps them out under duress.

This reiteration of the show's plot ran longer than the show did!

Speaking of shows that didn't stay on the air long - last up - Beyond Westworld - I think two episodes aired in 1980. Here's a promo for the premiere:

Basically latching on to the "replace people with android duplicates and take over the world" plot of the feature film Westworld's sequel Futureworld, this had a couple of special agents out to stop the madman who developed these robotic creations for the Delos Corporation, but he'd already escaped with the plans and several prototypes. This was a show I briefly checked out - no pun intended - but it wasn't something I was crazy over - just something I was sorta going to watch because it was sci-fi and I was a sci-fi geek. Then they cancelled it and I watched something else.

Until next post, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!

1 comment:

  1. Wizards & Warriors! Holy smokes I loved that little show. Once upon a time (ahem), I had the TV Guide with a behind-the-scenes look at the fx.

    Julia Duffy turned up on Newhart playing much the same character (a princess of sorts), if memory serves, and much later, as a teacher on the Nick series Drake & Josh.

    I'd completely forgotten that show. Thanks the walk down memory lane!