Saturday, August 16, 2008

Supermarionation Is Not Easy

It looked so easy, the Japanese tried to imitate it several times.

And failed every time.

First, something from 1960, that was supposed to compete with Supercar.

Spaceship Silica ( 1960 )
Japan's response to Supercar, Gerry Anderson's masterpiece of animarionation.

Uh, right. I'm sure this is on DVD, just like Supercar. NOT!

Then in the early 1980s, they tried again with X-Bomber, which was picked up in England, renamed Star Fleet, and dubbed into English (with a terrible synthesizer theme that's bizarrely become a cult favorite!).

Star Fleet - Skull Ambush

I first saw a full-color photograph from X-Bomber in Fantastic Films magazine. I was real excited by it. It wasn't until well over a decade later I finally got to see some of it, thanks to the Internet. It was bloody awful! Terrahawks looked good in comparison!

I would have liked to have included at least the theme visuals to Supercar here, but all traces of embedable video have been erased from YouTube. These are the theme visuals to the series after it, Fireball XL5:

Fireball XL5 - Intro & Credits

And this is Terrahawks, which is not considered one of Gerry Anderson's best puppet series (that rep was earned, beginning with the dreadful Richard Harvey theme!):

Thunder Roar (Part 1)

Just about now, some people are squirming in their seats, shouting, "What about Team America: World Police?"

Listen, some of you can think me rude and crude and even vulgar or obscene. But I do have my limits. And I draw the line at that one. I have nothing good to say about it and find it so low that I won't embed a clip.

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