Glen A. Larson

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  • #35961
    Rag
    Participant

    OK, the burning question is… Would you class the majority of Glen A. Larson’s work as Sci-fi?

    This is a debate that has been raging long and hard (ish), in some of my social circles (only the ones sad enough to let me lead them into inane topics of conversation).

    For those of you who don’t know who he is… WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN????!!!!! He is one of the most prolific creators of pulp TV around. I can guarantee that if you have watched TV you have seen one of his shows.

    For shows such as Battlestar Gallactica and Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (both complete classics) there is no question. The ones I am refering are those that fall into a grey area between Sci-Fi and action. The shows like Knight Rider, Manimal, Street Hawk, Air Wolf, Automan (now that was a classic) and the one with the trucks with the choppers in the back. (Not The Fall Guy or Magnum PI, obviously… yup, they’re his too)

    One side of the argument is that the gizmo’s are all hi-tech, the bad guys are generally in vehicles with space age doobries coming out of every orrafice (you’ve gotta remember, these were all made in the early 80’s. It was pretty hi tech for back then).

    The other side is that they were comtempary pieces, set in the current time period. the argument being that it’s not Sci-Fi if it’s not set in the future. Personally I think that is a large bucket of steaming… whatever floats yer boat. But I am still to make a firm descision on whether it’s actually Sci-Fi or not.

    Well? Waddya reckon?

    B.T.W… Yes, I do consider Mr Larson to be of a godlike status. He is right up there with the likes of Harry Harrihausen, Gerry Anderson and Jim Henson.

    #43919
    Flamegrape
    Participant

    Aren’t they going to make a new Knightrider series?

    #43920
    ADM
    Participant

    The definition of Sci-Fi is really the core of this argument, for me Sci-Fi is anything that envisages future technology or ideals that are either not possible or unthought of in our lifetimes.
    And with that I would say that Knight Rider and it’s ilk fall into a sci-fi category.
    Trouble is, is that most people class Sci-fi as Star Wars or Star Trek, which is fair enough, but Sci-fi is in itself science, where the people take current scientific theory and expand upon on it.
    Even though Glen A Larson produced what is known as ‘pulp’ T.V, he was damn good at it, and the eighties called out for this type of T.V. I think if he got another stab at programmes like Knight Rider it would be done to suit the likes of today’s audiences and it would be bloody good!!!
    ADM

    #43921
    Anonymous
    Guest

    It does depend on your definition of scifi–

    For me these are basically good guy vs. bad guy shows with high tech gimmicks. Nothing wrong with that; when it’s well done (Bond movies for example) it’s lots of fun.

    I think scifi should include some kind of ideas about the human condition–I don’t mean anything heavy necessarily, but just a glimpse of other possibilities, whether it has to do with the future, with a different way of thinking, of seeing the world, etc. The gadgetry is just window dressing.

    Why are they bothering to remake Knightrider of all things?

    elmey

    #43922
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Knightrider.

    Knightrider?

    Knightrider?!

    Bloody jeezum crow, if they want to remake a Glen series, why the fugg don’t they remake Airwolf? Now there’s a series worth a remake.

    #43923
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Talking about Airwolf and Automan (which I barely remember), anyone remember Streethawk, which was similar to Airwolf and of the same era but with a bike instead of a chopper.

    #43924
    ADM
    Participant

    quote:


    Originally posted by Cat:
    Talking about Airwolf and Automan (which I barely remember), anyone remember Streethawk, which was similar to Airwolf and of the same era but with a bike instead of a chopper.


    That was one cool bike, and the name Jesse Mach was quite cool (at the time!) as well, but Airwolf was the better as it seemed more likely to have ultra sophisticated armanents strapped to a helicopter than a small motorbike.
    I remember Manimal with fondness as well, but the effect of a man transforming into a hawk or a panther was like Dr Moreau and kinda scary, even though it was mostly just his hand that we got to see transform.
    Automan was excellent, made Tron look like a novice!, especially the Automan Lamborghini with the blue outlines.
    Anyone remember Blue Thunder?, a little less powerful than Airwolf, but it still kicked ass…ahhh, those were the days!!!
    ADM

    #43925
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Airwolf…ahhh, that brings back memories… used to have a big poster of Jan Michael Vincent up on my wall, with Airwolf in the background, and with him holding something like an Uzi across his chest.
    is he still with us? last i heard he was about on death’s door, due to years of drink and drugs abuse, and a similar accident to Christopher Reeve-and that was a few years ago

    oh, i just thought- if anyone who used to watch these shows would like a trip down memory lane (in the UK at least, and if you have satellite or cable), Bravo is a good channel to watch. i’d keep an eye on the TV listings for that channel- it tends to show a lot of that ’80s stuff

    [ 31-10-2002: Message edited by: snooklepie ]

    #43926
    Rag
    Participant

    Never was much of an Airwolf fan. The chopper was too sleak and JMV to smarmy for my taste. Blue Thunder was IMHO much better. I just love the look of the Apache, and Roy Schneider (if that’s how you spell it) was just more believable as a… well, a real person (I put that down to being able to act).

    Street Hawk was superb. OK, I’m a bike fan, so it had a huge head start anyway, but I loved that series. Saw a couple of eps on Bravo recently. MY GOD HAS IT AGED!!!!!!

    Automan was great. Trouble with that one was the stack heals required by our digital hero wore to make his stumpy arsed self look more imposing. I missed sizable parts of the action and storyline to rolling around laughing at his footwear. Fantastic effects though. Obviously riding on the back of Trons popularity (incidentally, I’m sure you are all already aware of the 20th aniversary DVD release of Tron… If not you are now), But that is no bad thing.

    Manimal just made me laugh. The rippling hands were great. they didn’t make many of those though (or at least didn’t air many in the UK.

    Knightrider was the weakest of the lot in my books. Possibly cos of old leather pants himself. Anyone with a dodgy perm, leather trousers and huge popularity in the German music industry is instantly suspect!!!

    BUT WHAT WAS THE NAME OF THE ONE WITH THE TRUCKS? It’s really starting to bug me now. All I can remember is that it was aired late night on Channel 4 in the UK(I think it was channel 4), back in the early 90’s. One of the co-stars was a short, burly Australian bloke with spike bleached blonde hair. He always black trousers, boots and a black leather waist coat. the trucks were Kitt-esque with all sorts of lights and switches in the cockpit that were obviously attached to all sorts of high powered weaponry (can’t actually remember them being labeled ‘GUNS’ and ‘ROCKETS’, but it wouldn’t surprise me). And they had Micro helecopters in the trailer (not mini hellicopters, the one man jobs. Chopper versions of microlites). It was just as cheesy as the rest, and just as entertaining.

    Oh, just as an after thought… How many other people can say that so many of their pulp, mass produce TV shows are still being talked about and watched 20 years later? The mans a genius!!! Bet he’s worth a bob or two as well. You reckon he’s looking for an heir?

    #43927
    ADM
    Participant

    The trucks in Knightrider was either GARTH or Goliath, something with a G at any rate.
    I loved Blue Thunder, it was the first time I’ve seen an Apache and it looked awesome, and yes it was more realistic then.
    But Airwolf was a good slice of fantasy, and I prefer it becuase the music rocked while was Airwolf going into action…a real adrenalin rush!!!
    I saw quite a lot Manimal, and how sad is this but I remember the actor (coz he’s a Brit)…Simon McCorkindale (spelling??), and for a bonus point can anyone remember the creatures he could morph into?
    ADM

    #43928
    Anonymous
    Guest

    wasn’t James Farentino the pilot in the Blue Thunder TV series?

    i watched all that sort of stuff during the ’80s- even the A-team!!! ahhhh…don’t make TV like that these days….

    #43929
    ADM
    Participant

    quote:


    Originally posted by snooklepie:
    wasn’t James Farentino the pilot in the Blue Thunder TV series?

    i watched all that sort of stuff during the ’80s- even the A-team!!! ahhhh…don’t make TV like that these days….


    I think he may have played the co-pilot alongside Roy Schneider, mainly because both Schneider and Farantino were biggish stars at this time and may have done a one off film but no more, but I may be wrong.
    I do remember the guy who played Garth (Dana Garvey?) alongside Mike Myers in Wayne’s World being in the series as co-pilot, but I’m not sure who played the lead role.
    ADM

    #43930
    Rag
    Participant

    quote:


    Originally posted by ADM:
    The trucks in Knightrider was either GARTH or Goliath, something with a G at any rate.


    I think you’re right (Goliath, not Garth). But the Trucks I’ve been wittering on about was a series in it’s own right. Not a leather clad, second rate crooner in sight.

    As for who piloted Blue Thunder… I’d got it into my head that it was Roy, but it was many years ago, and my poor, aged noggin is somewhat addled by far too much sex ‘n’ drugs ‘n’ Rock ‘n’ Roll in the intervening years. Could have been anyone… Except Aunt Flo. She was definately in Bod (no… I am not trying to get a thread devoted to either Bod or the tv of my youth. Honest)

    As for Manimal… A house cat, a snake, a hawk and a black panther. What do I win? OK, I couldn’t remember the cat or the snake, and you’d already mentioned the hawk and the Panther. But I did have to go and look it up myself, to get them all right. Any brownie points for that?

    #43931
    Anonymous
    Guest

    I wouldent say its SciFi….

    I have only seen Fall Guy, wich, in my humble opinion *** *** *** **** **** ****** ** ***** *****!!!!!

    I know the kind of show and it just sux…

    But I think I can see your point….

    #43932
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Ahh, THAT made sense.

    #65785
    avideodrome
    Participant

    Hi,
    I too am a huge Glen A larson fan- (or was as a kid)
    The name of the show with the trucks was…”The Highwayman”, The leading guy was Sam Jones (the chap who played Flash Gordon)He drove around in a really flashy black truck, wearing leather (trying to look like the Punisher)saving folk.

    I think that most of his shows were most definalty sci-fi, maybe not your issac asmov, but hey, they were fantastic.

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