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Time Tunnel on Region 2
on 26 February 2011
Time Tunnel is a classic series produced by Irwin Allen in the mid 1960s. It is one series of four successful shows. The others being Lost in Space, Land of the Giants and Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. All of which have been released in America on Region one. 20th Century Fox Television released the classic three series of Lost in Space on DVD way back in 2003 to 2005 on Region 2, and it seems logical they would have released the other shows but it has taken them until this year 2011 for them to finally get on with it. So it has been a long time coming and a welcome release since Region one copies have been too expensive or difficult to play. It will be a great relief to many fans when they are finally released.
Dr Doug Phillips and Dr Tony Newman head a team working on a machine that can transport people back or forward in time. They work at a research centre, hidden beneath the Arizona Desert. They have perfected how to send something into time and locate their position but not how to bring it back. Time Travel is possible through "The Time Tunnel".
Doug and Tony need more time to perfect it but a government official arrives to inspect the progress of the project and decides that he may recommend closing down the project. Tony desperately enters the Tunnel to prove that it works. He finds himself transported back to 1912 on board the Titanic the day before it sinks. Knowing that they cannot bring him back, and that Tony is in danger, Doug follows him into the Tunnel. Every episode takes the pair to different and famous events in time.
The Time Tunnel was created by Irwin Allen in 1966. It was set two years into the shows future 1968. The series has a glossy big production feel about it even though it was made with limited studio sets and old cinema footage from the cutting room floor. Irwin Allen bought up these un used clips from big blockbuster historical movies and incorporated them into the action of the show.
It is a series of pure escapism and great fun. The historical stories can be a little informative when you forgive the added fiction of Doug and Tony's role in them.
There are other stories that are science fiction in origin with aliens from space and magical powers of Merlin.
Irwin Allen had a good run with other similar shows like "Lost in space", "voyage to the bottom of the sea" and "Land of the giants". It is a great action series with a taster of the next episode at the end of each story.
Some of the dialogue is a bit weak and is deliberatly simplistic so as to appeal to the whole family including the kids. For example things are often explained by some characters when it is very obvious what is happening anyway. But despite this element of the dialogue it is all a bit of fun. You cannot take any of it seriously. The beauty is that it is like that. It is just escapist fun.
Originally the episodes had a cliffhanger ending. At the end of each story our two heroes would tumble into the next adventure and we would get a taster of the story of next weeks episode. This would then leave us just as Doug and Tony were in terrible danger. However on these DVD releases those endings have been edited out. This is becuase the episodes have been put in production order rather than transmission order. Its a shame they have cut these episodes like that but these cliffhangers are available as extras.
There was only one series and this DVD version contains the complete series.
This is a good classic science fiction series that is pure indulgent fun.