Thursday, September 14, 2023

Space: 1999 Days ― The Making of Space: 1999 (Book)

Late 1976: not long after the premiere of Space: 1999's second season.

Even as a young teen, when I wandered through a department store, I automatically gravitated to the book section; in this case, Woolworths. On an island bookrack was a freshly published paperback with the somewhat intoxicating title of "The Making of Space: 1999", sitting, awaiting rescue by a geek in shining polyester. And quickly I read it once I got it home.

It's interesting how one's interests change with age. At the time of my first read, the most interesting chapters for me were "Special Effects", "Art Direction", "Camera and Crew", and "Music" ― essentially the "tech credits". When I reread it a few years ago I found "Scripts" the most interesting essay... probably because this making-of was researched and written during production of the show's second year, when incoming producer Fred Freiberger was on a mission to improve Space's scripts and characterizations ― he succeeded, for the most part. Also, as a teacher would hammer into my classmates and I in film school, the script is the most important element in a film or television series. With a Czech accent: "No script, no movie!" (Luddy was great; tough, but great.) "The Making of Space: 1999" is well worth reading if one is into this sort of thing.

Before I go I have to say something controversial; controversial to many Space: 1999 fans, at least: I much prefer the theme music and background scores in Year Two.

The Making of Space: 1999
- A Gerry Anderson Production -

Tim Heald

Ballantine Books 

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