Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Years before theater audiences were introduced to a friendly little alien with a glowing finger and a penchant for Reece's Pieces, director Steven Spielberg offered another compelling tale about visitors from another planet. Having recently put his name on the map with a little summer blockbuster called Jaws, he would switch to the science fiction genre in 1977. The result was Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and audiences would never look at the skies (or a clump of mashed potatoes, for that matter) in quite the same way. Continue reading...

Escape to Witch Mountain

Escape to Witch Mountain

A classic film in the Disney live-action arsenal, Escape to Witch Mountain was a 1975 feature based on Alexander Key’s 1968 sci-fi book about young orphaned siblings that display mysterious psychic powers. More eerie than scary, it charmed millions of young moviegoers, who still hold a fond place in their heart for this timeless offering. Continue reading...

Quantum Leap

Quantum Leap

Oh, boy. Nobody can resist a time-travel story, especially when the sci-fi aspect is toned down in favor of drama. Quantum Leap, which debuted in 1989 on NBC, put a unique twist on time-travel, having the main character, Dr. Sam Beckett, actually inhabit the bodies of various people living in the past. That included women, kids and, in one memorable episode, a chimp. Thanks to compelling plots and a wonderful chemistry between Sam and his sidekick, Al, Quantum Leap won the hearts of many a TV viewer. Continue reading...

Knight Rider

Knight Rider

After the short-lived sitcom from the 60s, My Mother the Car, television viewers would have to wait almost two decades before a network ventured into talking car territory again as part of the prime time lineup. It was worth the wait, and NBC scored a big hit with a talking car named K.I.T.T in the weekly 80s series Knight Rider. Continue reading...

WarGames

WarGames

Home computers were quite the fad in the early 80s but most people didn’t know what exactly could be accomplished with them other than very simple word processing programs and rudimentary games. WarGames, released in 1983, showed the world the advantages (and disadvantages) to be had from computers’ increasingly important role in our lives. Continue reading...

Small Wonder

Small Wonder

Every once in a while, a premise is so patently ridiculous that it wins the hearts of many, thanks to its unbridled absurdity. And there might not have ever been a stronger contender for the top of the “you’ve got to be kidding” list than Small Wonder, a strangely endearing show about the lives of the Lawson family, who possessed a little, closely-guarded secret – their youngest child was actually a robot. Continue reading...

The Bionic Woman

The Bionic Woman

America caught its first glimpse of female superhero Jaime Summers when she appeared on a special two-part episode of the popular prime-time series, The Six Million Dollar Man, circa 1975. The long-lost love interest of Steve Austin, Jamie and her bionic boyfriend hoped to rekindle that high school romance. Then, she became crippled in a tragic parachuting accident and a distraught Steve pleaded with his boss, Oscar Goldman, to use some high-tech healing power on his lady friend. Continue reading...

Major Matt Mason

Major Matt Mason

Long before Buzz Lightyear was blasting off into space, kids have held an affinity for space-related toys – perhaps never more so than during the space race of the 1960s. As man reached for the stars, kids reached for the ultimate astronaut hero of the toy world – a well-equipped action hero known as Major Matt Mason. Continue reading...