Lost in Space: The Complete First Season

Lost is Space is yet another example of the future they promised us that never arrived. I'm still waiting for those shiny body suits, sidekick robots and personal jet packs. Their world looks nothing like the 1997 I remember. Loosely based on the Swiss Family Robinson stories, a family, adrift in space, learns to survive in an unknown environment. This is television science fiction before Star Trek, when stories had simple morals and cartoon-ish fun. There's an endless stream of pop culture references, including the oft-quoted "Danger, Will Robinson!," and a window into the public's imagination, circa 1965. During their takeoff, Dr. Smith sabotages the Robinson's space ship. Unfortunately, his obsessive compulsive disorder, going back to check and recheck Robbie the Robot's controls, causes him to be trapped in the ship as well. The ship is invariably knocked off course and the Robinsons spend the rest of the series trying to find their way home. They face various foes along the way — a Cyclops, morphing plants, vengeful "echoes" and creepy kids who live in "mirrorland" — and are always at odds with their resident stowaway. Dr. Smith mellows out as the season progresses, becoming more comic relief than evil mastermind. (Please see episode 11 with the "magic wish granting machine" for evidence.) The only DVD extra is the original unaired pilot episode (with no Dr. Smith in the cast). I suppose Entertainment Tonight's "Whatever Happened to?" segments have already covered anything of interest. The show, however, is silly and fun even without the points of trivia. The first season of Lost in Space is quirky and just enough off-kilter to make it enjoyable. Although, I don't recommend watching all 30 episodes back to back. (Fox)