31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
This review is for the contents only, not the slipshod packaging.
Yes it does feature a picture of Hawk who is NOT in this series. It DOES say Buck was frozen in ice after crashing in the ARTIC (sic) and thawed in the year 2419. He was frozen in his space ship whilst in space and it was 2491. Does anyone at Universal give a toss, does no-one proof read their packaging?
The show itself is the star. It brings back great memories of Saturday evenings, sure it has dated somewhat with a heavy disco emphasis but if you judge it as a product of its era it is one of the best.
Gil Gerard is the laconic hero. Erin Gray is still the best looking woman ever to don a space suit. Tim O'Connor is a good foil as the Earth commander. Pamela Hensley is a suitably sexy villainess.
Set in a post apolocalyptic Earth that appears to have lost most of its history and the land outside the cities is a wasteland, it is a pretty grim future and that is played on a lot as the theme of the futility of war is ever present.
The stories contain a fair mixture of action and comedy and some great co-stars including the original Buck Rogers "Buster Crabbe" as Brigadier (Flash) Gordon. The make up effects on the Vorvon in Space Vampire are so effective it could join Oasis as the missing Gallagher brother.
The language is heavily 70's influenced and if Andromeda in Space Rockers are anywhere near the future for music we need some help.
I would hope Universal would repackage this show. as it is now they do it an injustice and it smacks of a rushed out effort.
I cannot fault this season of the show it is one of my favourite shows ever. But Universal execs have, between this packaging and the whole of the concept of season 2 which was an act of TV suicide, managed to ruin what was a perfectly good idea. Shame on you.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 3 April 2005
I remembered this with fond memories from my childhood, unlike so many other childhood series, this seems as good now as it was then.
Colonel Wilma is still a fox. The princess in her metal bikini's is mind blowing, and Buck him self is a magical cross between James Bond, Han Solo and Templeton Peck.
Though above all Twiki steals the show as the wise cracking side kick robot with a smart ass attitude.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 2 March 2005
Buck rogers in the 25th century was a re-make of the brilliant and very funny buster crabe shows of the 1940's.This is a very camp series starring the BOND like Buck who has an eye for every girl.It is fun and the cast have fun on the series which makes a change for a non-serious sci-fi.Wilmer is fantastic and and for me makes the show but seems to follow in what ever hair brained scheme Buck has dreamed up.The DVD's here are only series one with no extras at all thus my 3 star rating.This is an expensive set for what you get and universal could have done much better.
I have plumped to sell this set and import the much better full series 1&2 set from America.Again this has no extras which is a great pity but you do get a nice booklet and great on-screen menus.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 28 June 2007
Yes I know that the special effects are poor compared to todays overload of CGI , but that's the point - the acting carries this Series.
Gil Gerrard is simply brilliant as Buck Rogers and there is of course the *awesome* Erin Grey; her acting coupled with that amazing body draped in Spandex Catsuits being 99% the reason why I couldn't stop watching this series as a 12year old boy. The term "Hot" just doesn't come close... I've never seen any woman Ever move so well...
After buying Both series on DVD I've relived my childhood weekends via 60minute reminders of corny humour, strange costumes ( except Col Deerings' :) ), eccentric storylines and an even more eccentric Wilfrid Hyde-White. Its Great, watching it makes you feel good ! If you ever loved this series as a child then it is a MUST Buy. Sit back, relax and feel the warmth that comes from watching old "friends" on screen again.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 2 January 2005
I used to love this when i saw this in the 80s so was excited when i got this at Xmas on DVD. However i'd say it is slightly disappointing to see it again now after all these years. Half the episodes in this first season are excellent whilst the others are mediocre at best. There are some excellent guest stars (Julie Newmar, Frank Gorshin etc) and the special effects were great for a 70s tv show but it suffers like Battlestar Galactica from budgetary constraints. Unlike on Battlestar where the whole series was set in the consistent world of the Galactica itself, this one takes you to a new planet nearly every episode and so suffers as a result. In some episodes you'll see spaceships in combat with each other - or characters flying ships - that will change from shot to shot. Also some of the imagery and costumes have dated very badly including some very cheesy 70s interpretations of 25th Century music ... Saturday Night Fever meets Star Wars. However thats not saying i wasnt entertained or dont hold this show in great affection, and Gil Gerard is a great hero and leading man despite Amazon's review of him being bland! This dvd also contains the cinematically released version of the pilot episode (including the infamous "dream" title sequence where Buck Rogers drifts through 25 years of hibernation and being awoken by scantily clad lycra-wearing beauties. This film (1 hr 30 mins) alone is worth the price and contains classic sequences like Buck exploring whats left of Old Chicago and being chased by mutants. I'd be missing the point if i didnt mention the campness and overt use of humour in this series and Rogers comes across as kind of like a U.S. James Bond in space with a girl on one arm and a slew of quips in the other. And of course theres Twiki the robot who will either drive you nuts or be one of the main reasons you bought this in the first place. You may end up viewing this dvd with nostalgic delight but serious sci-fi fans may turn their noses up at this. I probably fall into the first category but others may hold a diffrent opinion.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 25 April 2010
i used to love buck rogers as a 5 year old in 1980 and allways looked forward to a saturday tea time when i could catch the next enstalment in the series. So when i was brousing though amazon and came across it i had to invest in it to now watch it as an adult. Do not get me wrong the efects are now badly dated, butt this is still as fun as i remember it. With gil gerard playing buck and the oh so lovely erin gray playing wilma this is well worth a look for any old fans out there especilly at amazons price
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
This is one of the most memorable sci-fi series made in late 70s. It's good clean camp kitsch macho fun. Gil Gerard is definitive as the smart wise-cracking Buck Rogers and has a dedicated fanbase of fans to this day. The pilot movie, is thankfully presented as it's theatrical release version. Which is the best version because it's edgier.
The basic premise of the series is Buck Rogers, a Nasa Astronaut, is caught up in some kind of cosmic storm that kept him and his space shuttle frozen and presevered in space for 500 years. He is thawed out by The Draconians who happen accross his floating shuttle and the adventure begins from there..
Stand out episodes include: The Movie, Planet Of The Slave Girls, The Plot To Kill A City, Vegas In Space,Cosmic Wiz Kid, Space Vampire, A Dream Of Jennifer and many more. All of them in fact are good.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 18 May 2007
An excellent science fiction series from the '70's that unfortunately, has not aged well. Still, it has given us some iconic characters, after all, who could forget Twiki and his b-di-di-di? Who cares if the special effects look like they were done in paintbrush or the scripts were written by a five year old? It's still a good nostalgic trip back to when science fiction used to be completely unbelievable.
on 9 May 2014
Briefly for anyone unfamiliar with the character Buck Rogers is a 20th century man frozen and revived in the 25th century. Short stories and a novel, then a newspaper strip, film serial and and earlier lost TV show before this version.
The main characters are well cast, Gil Gerard is a likeable Buck Rogers. In the main he's cast in the Captn Kirk/Steve Austin mould, an eye for a pretty girl and a nice line in one liners. Gerard can do a bit more as in the pilot and episodes like A Dream of Jennifer where he's given more emotional material to work with.
Erin Gray is a believably militaristic Col Wilma Deering who is still clearly very feminine. Although naturally it could not be sustained long term, her disdain for Buck's undisciplined approach is a nice edge to their relationship. Although clearly attracted to each other, they never develop any real romantic relationship.
Tim O'Connor is the father figure Dr Huer and although he's not given the meatiest material to work with, he does well with it.
There's a C3PO/R2D2 style double act with robot Twiki and computer Dr Theopolis. Theopolis is voiced by Eric Server with a calm delivery and Twiki is played by Felix Silla and memorably voiced by Mel Blanc. In the main they work very well if occasionally they're a bit overdone.
The pilot was shown over here in cinemas and that's where I saw it 1st. Despite a bizarre attempt to do a Bond style title sequence (Erin Gray , Pamela Hensley and others try to look sexy while Gil Gerard's asleep!) backed by a vocal version of the theme so soppy that even the Smurfs would have baulked at performing it, it's a very good little film.
Darker than the eventual series Buck is revived and both Earth and Draconia think he's a spy. He's condemned to death with very little reason but Wilma gives him a chance to prove himself.
His condemnation and the mutants that attack if you got to the surface show a much darker 20th century than in the series: by Plot to Kill a City you can go onto the surface to play ball with your kids!
The pilot introduces regular enemies Killer Kane and Princess Ardala. Kane's played by well Henry Silva in the pilot and slightly less well by Michael Ansara in the series. Pamela Hensley plays Ardala in a soap opera style that is great fun helping to shore up the 2nd & 3rd stories she appears in which are rather weak.
The series proper begins with 2 parter Planet of the Slave Girls (titles are frequently unsubtle-Unchained Women, Planet of the Amazon Women) which is like many episodes a fun action adventure story. There's a really odd moment in it when it sounds like Buck is using the F word! Typically it has recognisable guest stars which is a hall mark of the series.
Throughout the run Batman fans will be pleased to see from the 1989 film Jack Palance and from the series; Caesar Romero, Frank Gorshin and Julie Newmar.
Dr No himself Joseph Wiseman appears twice, Mission Impossible's Peter Graves has a guest shot , My favourite Martian's Ray Walston and for soap opera fans; Morgan Brittany, Ana Alicia and Leigh McCloskey. You will also see a pre-fame Jamie Lee Curtis and Tricia Noble, to the best of my knowledge the only person to have done Up Pompei, a Carry On and American SF TV.
Many episodes like Slave Girls follow in the action adventure mould; The Plot to Kill a City, Cruise Ship to Stars, Space Rockers & Twiki is Missing to name a few.
A few show a biting budget e.g. "Vegas in Space" looks like a slot machine arcade and "Olympiad" sees the space olym pics taking place in a gym.
The format is Buck goes frequently undercover to investigate a mystery of some kind. How this famously 500 year old man is a good undercover choice, is best not looked at.
A few episodes have a proper theme or an unusual idea e.g challenging the idea of retiring people in "Return of the Fighting 69th". This is also echoed by recalling skilled fighter General Gordon out of retirement in Slave Girls but I think that may have been just to give a welcome role to original Buck Rogers-Buster Crabbe.
In "Happy Birthday Buck" information is carried in the unconcious mind and many years before Johnny Mnemonic!
There are a few much stronger episodes e.g."A Drean of Jennifer" sees Buck haunted with a girl who is the dead spit of his 20th century girlfriend and "Space Vampire" is a terrific show let down only by the vampire's appearance.
Even the obligatory flashback show "A Blast for Buck" has some sort of plot to it.
Only a few week entries; Bucks' Duel to the death", "Ardala returns" and Escape from Wedded Bliss"
There are some costumes that must be seen to be believed e.g. the aliens in Dream of Jennifer."
The guest parts for women vary quite a bit some are strong and some eye candy which may be why some find the series sexist.
The series ends on strong 2 parter" Flight of the War Witch" a great story owing much to the classic film "This Island Earth"
There are lapses in logic e.g. if the Draconians are on a semi-war footing with Earth why have they never used the deadly weapon they turn on them in "Escape" to force Buck to marry Ardala?
Effects are dated of course and little effort seems to have been made restoring the picture.
There are no extras and the sequence where Buck turns down the chance to join the team in the pilot, is missing.
This is the show in the better of its 2 seasons and if you like old Battlestar galactic and old Star Trek etc. you are likely to have a lot of fun with it.
on 31 August 2012
Buck Rogers In The 25th Century follows the tale of William "Buck" Rogers, a USAF pilot who finds himself catapulted from 1987 500 years into the future. The concept began life in "Amazing Stories" the 1920s, and through cartoon versions in the 1930s and TV shows in the 1950s, this is the late 1970s incarnation of the story.
The various plots involve mostly Buck and Col. Wilma Deering, along with their little side-kick android Tweeky, based in a post-apocalyptic New Chicago defending the Earth from a new threat each episode.
Gil Gerard plays Buck as a jokey, affable character with compassion, but one who shows his strength when needed. Erin Grey plays Col. Wilma Deering (a stunning sylph whose costume is so tight she needed to be stitched into it), a Colonel and fighter pilot who becomes Buck's most trusted friend and colleague in the 25th Century.
The reasons for rating this series with a "5" include the light-hearted atmosphere (the earth is under threat just about every episode, but there really is never any sense of danger), some of the fantastic lycra-abundant costumes, and the reminiscence factor; I absolutely loved watching this as a kid. Because to be fair, the plots are wafer thin!
Released in 1979, it appears two years after the end of Space 1999 and the release of Star Wars, amazingly appearing the same year as Ridley Scott's "Alien"; although Buck Rogers is definitely a product of time and place, clearly in the 1970s and 1980s TV sci-fi mould rather than attempting to break it as did the aforementioned films.
There are a number of sci-fi cross references in the episodes. In an early episode a medallion bears the Enterprise logo, (plus there appears use of the famous Star Trek sound effects of the swishing doors, alerts, and beaming sounds and visuals elsewhere in the series), a spaceport scene features a tannoy call for a "Captain Christopher Pike", and Flash Gordon makes an impromptu appearance too. Buck also gives Captain Kirk a run for his money in the romance stakes, managing to find himself wrapped up with a new girl almost every episode.
Overall, a great, light-hearted TV sci-fi opera from the late 1970s, and lovely to see it all again!