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Fireball XL5 - The Complete Series - Special Edition [DVD] [1962]

Gerry Anderson , Alan Patillo    Universal, suitable for all   DVD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
Price: 44.34
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Frequently Bought Together

Fireball XL5 - The Complete Series - Special Edition [DVD] [1962] + Stingray: The Complete Series [DVD] [1964] + Captain Scarlet - Complete Series Box Set [DVD] [1967]
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Product details

  • Directors: Gerry Anderson, Alan Patillo, John Kelly, David Elliott, Bill Harris
  • Producers: Gerry Anderson
  • Format: Box set, PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 6
  • Classification: U
  • Studio: Network
  • DVD Release Date: 29 Jun 2009
  • Run Time: 975 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001VAF6SE
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 67,645 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Languishing in the vaults for decades, during which time it became a semi-legendary show among TV fans of a certain age, Fireball XL5 (1962) was Gerry Anderson's second puppet-animation science fiction series, the direct forerunner of Stingray (1963) and Thunderbirds (1964). This is the show on which Anderson established the formula for his later classics: a pseudo-military organisation engaged in desperate Earth-saving adventures against overwhelming odds; superb model work; puppets with very obvious strings but endearing personalities; iconic music by Barry Gray; and absolutely massive explosions.

Colonel Steve Zodiac pilots the coolest spaceship then seen on British TV, the titular Fireball XL5, and is joined by medical officer Venus, a forerunner of Lady Penelope voiced by Sylvia Anderson, and comedy relief Prof Matt Matic (David Graham). Along for the ride is Robert the Robot, a thinner version of Robbie the Robot from Forbidden Planet (1956), a character who would soon turn up in Lost in Space (1965). The plots are ridiculous, with typically Cold War-era aliens routinely bent on planetary destruction for no reason, and there's zero attention to even rudimentary astronomy or anything else approaching actual science. Yet the gadgets, vehicles and puppetry are first-rate and the fast-paced, action-filled episodes are relentlessly entertaining. It's a cult just waiting to be reborn, and essential viewing for all Anderson fans.

On the DVD: Fireball XL5 is presented with all 39 episodes (they run 25 minutes each) on five discs. Despite the colourful packaging, the episodes are all black and white, and the 4:3 picture is generally fine, though there are occasional instances of over-compression, which results in artefacting on smooth walls and the like. Some shots look a little soft, but detail is usually strong, making the models and puppets look better than ever. The mono sound is fine, if unremarkable. There are no extras beyond optional subtitles. --Gary S Dalkin

Product Description

Box set containing all 39 episodes of the black and white 1960s TV series following the interplanetary adventures of a spacecraft commanded by Colonel Steve Zodiac and his crew: the eccentric maths genius Professor Matthew Matic, the beautiful space doctor Venus, and Robert the Robot. Episodes are: 'Planet 46', 'Hypnotic Sphere', 'Planet of Platonia', 'Space Magnet', 'The Doomed Planet', 'Plant Man From Space', 'The Sun Temple', 'Space Immigrants', 'Space Monster', 'Flying Zodiac', 'Spy in Space', 'XL5 to H20', 'Space Pirates', 'The Last of the Zanadus', 'Space Pen', 'Convict in Space', 'Wings of Danger', 'The Triads', 'Sabotage', 'Prisoner on the Lost Planet', 'Flight to Danger', 'Space Vacation', 'Mystery of the TA2', 'Robert to the Rescue', 'The Forbidden Planet', 'The Granatoid Tanks', 'Dangerous Cargo', '1875', 'The Robot Freighter Mystery', 'Drama at Space City', 'Whistle for Danger', 'Faster Than Light', 'The Day the Earth Froze', 'Invasion Earth', 'Ghosts of Space', 'Trial by Robot', 'A Day in the Life of a Space General', 'Space City Special' and 'The Fire Fighters'.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
43 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rocket fuelled fun 20 Oct 2003
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I picked up a cheap video of XL5 some weeks ago in a charity shop and it brought the memories flooding back so I just had to buy this DVD. This series is in my opinion the best thing Gerry Anderson did (hmm murmers of disapproval at the back there!). It is just so awesome. The fact that it is in black and white does not detract from the quality of adventure, excitement and fun at all. Something I always found a little lacking in Stingray and T-Birds.
As a child it captured my imagination and I can't wait to watch it with my toddler...I remember building my own XL5's out of lego ... and it certainly fired my desire for reading sci fi novels in later years.
The spaceship was and still is the coolest ever to appear on TV (as mentioned in the synopsis for the release), and seeing the shot of it's tail fin under dark and stormy looking skies at the beginning of each episode is awesome. The way it took off running down the launch track was great although I always wondered what happened to the little truck that flew off the end of the track once the spaceship had taken off!!!
Steve Zodiac the hero space pilot is so cool and Venus...what a babe! Robert as well has a certain robotic flair with his monotone robotic voice "On our way ooommmmeeee!".
A truly essential purchase and a long overdue release on DVD. Now what about Supercar????
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58 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars you will NEED this! it's stunning! 1 July 2009
if you are a fan of gerry anderson like me, you will NEED this! the old carlton box set was nice at the time, but in comparison to this excellent network release, it simply pales. its so nice and pleasing to have a company like network, who actually care about the products it puts out. they know they are producing the dvds for the fans and the care and attention to detail is always very welcome. indeed, all their box sets are worth checking out. this box set comes in a very hard cover and the two dvd sections are each in their own hardcovers too and are made up to resemble fireball XL5 annuals from the 1960s. they look (and feel) great! the actual info booklet is made up to look like a TV21 magazine and it is beautifully reproduced, well researched and very informative. not only are we treated to all 39 digitally remastered and restored episodes (thankfully in full screen and not cropped or compressed and in full dynamic mono), theres also a brand new and utterly stunning colourised version of one of the episodes on the bonus disc. it will knock your socks off! ive never seen a colourisation look like this EVER before! it certainly sets the standards for the future. the episode actually looks as if it was originally made in colour, not like the poor colourisations we are used to (if you dont believe me, on the network homepage there is a clip). whetever, this boxset is well worth the money and i can only recommend it with the highest of praise. well done network on another brilliant release!
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic Show Gets A Fresh And Bold Look 10 July 2009
I LOVED this show as a kid growing up in the States (it ran here on NBC on Saturday mornings), where I would sit mesmerized by the program. A few years ago, the series was released on Carlton in the UK and A&E in the US. While I was happy to have the cherished episodes of my childhood finally available, the video and audio quality were as good as they could be at that time.

Now, Network DVD (that WONDERFUL company that brought such fantastic remasters of The Prisoner and Space 1999 Series One and The Champions) has done it again. These DVDs are SPECTACULAR. For a show in B&W to look THIS good with a crystal clear soundtrack (mono) is mind boggling. Not only can I have fun and relive a part of my childhood, but I'm sharing this with my 8 year old daughter who loves it. Network ALWAYS delivers on high quality products with vastly superior remastering than most DVD manufacturers could even dream of. The new Fireball XL5 does not disappoint, and the original episodes look brand new having been remastered from the original film elements.

To top it all off, a bonus disc contains not only great documentaries about the program and classic photos and promo material...but a COLORIZED episode of the original show that has to be seen to be believed. STUNNING isn't the word for it. What a FANTASTIC job!

If you have the earlier discs...sell them, give them away, and buy these. There is no comparison. A great show has been made to look like it was meant to look...perfect picture and sound. I cannot recommend this release strongly enough.
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fireball XL5 - still fantastic 50 years on 14 Feb 2006
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
It is 2062, and the World Space Patrol, located at Space City, watches the skies with the aid of its fleet of interplanetary XL rocket-ships. The hero of the half hour, Colonel Steve Zodiac, is the pilot of Fireball XL5 that protects Sector 25 beyond the Solar System from alien invasion. With Steve Zodiac in command, his crew consisted of Venus, a doctor of space medicine, Professor Matic, the science officer, Venus's pet Zoonie the Lazoon, and Robbie the Robot, the rocket's mechanical co-pilot (voiced by Jerry Anderson). I was 6 when Fireball XL5 aired and ever since I've been a SciFi and realSci fan, going on from XL5 to the likes Dr Who, Lost in Space, Star Trek and the moon landings. However despite the oddities of the witty 1960's script, the spaceship Fireball XL5, and its accessories like the hover scooters, are a fantastic iconic design (particularly in the colour stills). The storylines are quite strong for a kids series, and the aliens are quite convincing - although we seem to see many of them again quite soon as the fish people in Stingray. In many ways Fireball XL5 has a younger feel to it than later Anderson projects, so I expect boys nearer 5 to 7 would appreciate it most (or those now over 50 who first saw it at this age). The Fireball XL5 boxed set has all 39 original B&W twenty-five minute episodes first broadcast in 1962, total run time is over 16 hours, with English audio only (no subtitles).

My son at 6 really took to the two XL5 videos I had, and like me he really really loved the Steve Zodiac song sung by Don Spencer at the end of each of episode, and we often used to have sing-alongs with it in the car.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Had to get this
Purchased as a gift and it was well received by my husband. Well recieved all round and it is recommended to any Fireball enthusiast.
Published 4 months ago by Buzz Read
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
Fantastic!!!! Hours of innocent entertainment, excellent script and brilliant acting what more could you ask for. Another masterpiece from Gerry Anderson.
Published 5 months ago by gary bedford
5.0 out of 5 stars VG
It is great fun watching these again - I hardly remember them from my childhood (although I know that was a long time ago!).
Published 5 months ago by MR R W CHESTER
5.0 out of 5 stars good present
this was bought for a friend who really I know loved it as he keeps thanking me for getting it
Published 7 months ago by Mr. Barry R. Andrews
4.0 out of 5 stars Nostalgic
I bought this TV show from my childhood to amuse my grandchildren, and it has been a great success. We enjoy watching episodes together. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Ian Townsend
4.0 out of 5 stars A great piece of nostagia
It certainly has its shortfalls in comparison to modern day special effects and puppetry but it quite genuinely brings back a warmth to the soul that only a cherished memory can... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Schon G Condon
5.0 out of 5 stars Fireball XL5 DVD
I purchased this item as a Christmas gift for my husband when we were reminiscing about embarassing childhood memories. Happy Days!!
Published 11 months ago by Trace
5.0 out of 5 stars Fireball XL5 DVD
Comes in a nice presentation box along with a documentary on the making of Fireball as well as a colour episode . Brings back so many childhood memories . Read more
Published 13 months ago by Robert Derry
5.0 out of 5 stars Just great
Just great, takes you way back into the future!
Show it to the grand children, they will love it for sure.
Published 15 months ago by BMW
5.0 out of 5 stars Best spaceship of its time
Another brilliant marionation series from the best marionation team there was - from the mastermind Gerry Anderson down to all the behind the scenes people. Read more
Published 15 months ago by 1960pb
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