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The Outer Limits is turning 50....

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Craig Beam, Sep 5, 2013.

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  1. Doug Wallen

    Doug Wallen Producer
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    I emailed, no response of any type. :(
     
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  2. B-ROLL

    B-ROLL Cinematographer

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    I believe the replacement program is being handled by Technicolor and they are probably on holiday (as I'm sure is KINO based upon issues with another purveyor last year) ...
     
  3. Doug Wallen

    Doug Wallen Producer
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    Not a complaint really. I understand that this is a difficult time due to replication issues and the approaching holidays. I emailed the day the notice was first posted. I expected an automated response. I didn't get that. Just surprised.
     
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  4. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    I viewed Production and Decay of Strange Particles week before last. I was busy so I didn’t post, plus it isn’t one of my top episodes. :). This must have been the first time I actually watched the episode and tried to follow it. Prior, I’d seen it once or twice and couldn’t stay with it. I thought it has some interesting concepts and visuals. As hard sci-fi, it could have been a great episode if it had been handled differently, maybe. One of the things that I thought was cool was as Joseph Ruskin and Leonard Nimoy was handling the block in the chamber, that as it overcame them and they die, they slowly go down and then slowly rise as the energy being fills the suit. When all the men were consumed, they had to hold hands to maintain the transmission of energy to each suit and they would sway slowly as if the energy within was pulsing. I liked those subtle bits. The other cool thing was the sheer number of actors who would later appear in Star Trek TOS as guest stars.

    Last night I wanted to catch another episode and watched The Chameleon. This episode i had seen before, but again, didn’t totally follow it. The alien’s were another very strong visual that has become iconic for the show I thought. Watching it this time, I could see the similarity to Architects of Fear. Except this time, they didn’t do as good a job with the transformation I thought. Perhaps they had the same apparatus as the professor in The Sixth Finger that could transform a being. Though they did say they had a bit of DNA from the aliens to help them make the change. I liked that the aliens were simply trying to get home after accidentally crashing on Earth and they had a Prime Directive to avoid contact if possible. I thought it wasn’t bad, but not their best effort. I liked the ending with the ever so similar kind of downer when Mace decided to go with the aliens and the General and Mace’s handler wanted him to return. But decided to let him go. So it wasn’t quite a downer and sort of appropriate.

    That’s it for the first season regular production episodes. This is a first for me to actually watch closely every episode. Previously I focused on my favorites. So this was really good to catch up with episodes I’d seen before, but never really fully watched and digest. Next I’ll watch Forms of Things Unknown. I know it’s a pilot, it didn’t know that before. Another episode that was a bit formidable and hard to get into. I’ve never seen this one all the way through or was interested enough to engage and understand it. So that’s my next episode to study.
     
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  5. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    I finally finished the first season blu ray with The Forms of Things Unknown. I’ve never actually fully watched this episode because it never made sense and was difficult for a younger version of myself to digest. Plus I’d seen photos of an earlier French film that I had a very vague notion of called Les diaboliques of two women who plot to kill the man in their lives.

    It was more interesting then I thought it would be. But also confusing because I had to rewatch a few sequences to understand that Tone was dead and reincarnated. How did he tilt time when he was dead? So apart from that, I liked the story and how the ladies ended up at the mansion. Upon reading the plot for les diaboliques, it’s very similar to a point.

    I liked the dialogue a lot and the dialogue from many episodes in the first season. I think it’s very non-technobabble and poetic. You just don’t get kind of work anymore.

    I read Craig’s review on his blog, Barbara Rush was pretty wound up and screamed a lot. But I wasn’t so annoyed with her. At first I thought she looked familiar in the teaser and I thought that is Barbara Rush and I remembered her more from When Worlds Collide. She has a very mod 1960’s hair cut which I thought was very modern at the time.

    Had this episode had a better explanation for Tone’s backstory of reincarnation, I would have liked it a lot more. Oh yeah, I recognized that music as what would be the titles music for The Invaders. It’s just surprising in those days that they could get away with reusing music from show to show. I still have to rewatch this episode and listen to the audio commentary.

    In looking at the extras for the second season set, I see that the alternate cut for this episode is there. So it will be an interesting thing to see. Along with the Please Stand By pilot which I have not seen before.
     
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  6. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Hey guys, I guess I’ll keep going with the second season if a new thread is not going to be created for the second season Blu Ray.

    I finally opened the second season set and I did have a look at Soldier. It did start off looking and sounding great! But then I skipped ahead to the padded room sequence and I could hear the warbling audio. So I started off my Outer Limits Season 2 viewing with Cold Hands, Warm Heart. ( I didn’t realize until I listened to Craig Beam’s audio commentary that this was the first episode filmed for the second season. So it seems apt.)

    This episode is one of my favorites for a lot of reasons. Being a Star Trek fan, it has a lot of Star Trek connections, and as Craig’s audio commentary points out, the main connection is William Shatner. But as a child, I saw this episode and had a faint realization the lead is William Shatner as General Jeff Barton, but I remembered the Venusian creature more. It is a very effective visual effect. Though as I got older, I did wonder how low Barton’s ship got into Venus as it looked like he practically landed in order for the Venusian creature to get that close to his ship. Maybe they are flying creatures? At any rate, this viewing was the first time I realized it was the sound that the creature emits that affected Barton to the point of transforming, and being so cold.

    Of course this episode must be right behind Production and Decay of Strange Particles with the second amount of the number of Star Trek guest stars that appeared here first. There is Malachi Throne as the personal physician to Jeff, who goes on to several Star Trek appearances and voice over work. Mainly known as Commodare Mendez. Lawrence Montaigne as the space capsule engineer, whose known as Decius, the Romulan from Balance of Terror and as Stonn the Vulcan boyfriend to T’Pring, Spock’s betrothedin Amok Time. James B. Sikking I just noticed from this viewing is also a spacecraft engineer and he’s in Star Trek 3 as Captain Styles of the Excelsior.

    And then there’s Geraldine Brooks whose back after Architects of Fear.

    I am surprised by each reaction to episodes, it we each have our likes and dislikes, so that’s fair. Craig didn’t like this episode, admittedly, it is a bit thin on the explanations to the reasons for the infection that makes Jeff cold. It’s not as strong as The Man Who Was Never Born. But I see that as secondary, what it becomes for me is a love story where Ann’s love for Jeff ultimately helps Jeff pull through and overcome the infection. His earlier antics of working so hard to prepare for the meeting to fund Project Vulcan is merely a ruse to hide the fact that he’s freezing and didn’t want his wife to know. So he pushes her away. But her love for him is strong and she wants desperately to help him. The solution of the environmental pod to cook out the infection in Jeff may seem clumsy, but to me it makes some sense as he needed the heat and it ultimately kills off the infection, as a fever would. And Ann helps him through it. I get it now! Jeff’s Cold hands and Ann’s warm heart. I used to think Jeff’s hands were cold, but his heart was warm. I now I think the title refers to Ann’s warmth and love to Jeff.

    When I started watching this episode, I think the warbling audio from Soldier had me a little spooked. I wondered if the audio was on the tinny side on Cold Hands Warm Heart. It sounded thinner. Especially the Control Voice of Vic Perrin. Then the young Shatner also sounded a little different. So I pulled out the old first edition MGM DVD set with the flipper discs and sampled the start of Cold Hands Warm Heart. The sound on the old DVD is definitely warmer. But upon sampling the Blu Ray right afterwards, I think it’s simply that the audio on the Blu Ray may be less processed and cooked. It did sound OK.

    In terms of picture quality, I was as impressed with the second season so far with this episode. Though upon close inspection of some shots of the actors, there is some softness and perhaps that’s a matter of the source and or focus. Or soft focus. When I had a look at the DVD, I thought it actually looked very good compared to the Blu Ray.

    I’m hoping the replacement disc with the replaced Soldier mastering is out soon, or I’ll have to move on with Behold Eck. That’s an episode I really like and I know it’s not a universal favorite from fans or the creative team that made it. One more thing about Cold Hands Warm Heart, the work that Projects Unlimited did with the Venusian and the upcoming Eck and Wolf 359 is just some of the best stuff done at that time and since I think. Way Chang was quite an artist contributing some very iconic creatures and props for The Outer Limits, The Time Machine and on Star Trek.

    As far as the music goes, I am realizing that there is no Dominic Frontiere music anymore, I guess I’ve watched these episodes so many times over the years, I sort of mixed the music together. I felt Lubin’s music fit right in very well. The opening is similar visually, but the music is minimal so I thought it was an alternate cut of the Frontiere theme. The ending theme is Lubin’s and I like it too. Though I wonder why it’s changed from Frontiere’s. I’ve watched Demon with the Glass Hand so often, that it’s music is in my head and I connect it to Frontiere. It has a similar “feel” to me. Though it’s different. I do wish somehow the Lubin’s scores could be released on CD.
     
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  7. ScottRE

    ScottRE Second Unit

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    I got mine a few days ago and it's a wonderful release, finally providing us with the two pilots they should have in season one: Please Stand By and The Unknown. The TV promos are fun, but I am suspicious of their authenticity. I saw them originally on YouTube and these seem like the exact same promos, right down to the "video looking" series title graphics. But I am sure the audio is vintage, even if the videos may have been recreated after the fact.

    One small niggle, since the final two episodes are alone on a disc, would it have killed Kino Lorber to put both parts of The Inheritors on one disc and shift the episodes down one? The DVDs did the same thing.
     
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  8. Sadsack

    Sadsack Stunt Coordinator

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    Perhaps too small for you, but it would have been nice if they'd used Season Two music for the Season Two menu instead of re-using Frontiere's Season One. Lubin deserves it.
     
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  9. ScottRE

    ScottRE Second Unit

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    Actually, I agree. it would have been much more appropriate. Maybe they didn't get the rights...
     
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  10. Sadsack

    Sadsack Stunt Coordinator

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    Seems like they could have sampled audio from an episode, but they could have easily licensed the rights from Warner/Chappell (which now owns the Carlin Music Library which has some Lubin). So either Kino didn't think about doing it, thought it was better to stick with Frontiere, or didn't want to pay another penny on the project.
     
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  11. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    Considering all the other overlooked things with this series (poor booklet design, no episode numbers/index anywhere, lousy packaging, poor QC with some episodes) I'm not at all surprised at the laziness/sloppiness of the episode arrangement or music used on the S2 menu (frankly - I'd have preferred *no* music on the menu or at least don't put it on endless loop).

    I'm glad to have it as it generally looks and sounds spectacular and has some excellent special features.

    It could have been so much better.
     
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  12. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    As I recall, and I’d need to check, the original MGM DVD set menus used Frontiere music on the second season. I’d imagine the music doesn’t exist on tape since there’s never been any of Lubin’s music issued on LPs or CDs. Maybe like the Star Trek TOS soundtrack tapes, they are just sitting in a drawer somewhere. It’s a real unfortunate loss if the tapes are gone.
     
  13. ScottRE

    ScottRE Second Unit

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    Oh they exist and in good shape. You can even buy a small amount of them on ITunes.

    The KPM music library had them up all over their site and you could download low res MP3’s for reee until they got wise. I wound up with a ton of them, but still not a complete library.

    Someone just needs to license them for official release. LaLa Land, who did the season one set, isn’t interested.
     
  14. Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    Thanks for that info. Good to know the Lubin scores still exist. I guess LaLaLand doesn’t see a market for the second season. Maybe Intrada or FSM could do it? Maybe a complete series score set.
     
  15. ScottRE

    ScottRE Second Unit

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    FSM doesn't produce CDs anymore, unfortunately. I would enjoy a well done Lubin album. Some of his works is very effective. His sweet themes for The Inheritors are lovely and his opening to Soldier is exceptional.
     
  16. ScottRE

    ScottRE Second Unit

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    Watching The Unknown in its pilot form, I can see why it failed. The opening credits are very creepy and the images are terrifying (the ripping sound, though, is super annoying). But, the episode itself is an overblown, pompous mess with nary a scare in view. I mean, the opening sets you up for a Night of the Living Dead feeling and instead you get some weird gothic thing with little coherence.
     
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  17. Sadsack

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  18. Message #1158 of 1160 Jan 17, 2019 at 9:12 PM
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2019 at 9:39 PM
    Doug Wallen

    Doug Wallen Producer
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    Middle of January and still no word. Oh well. :mellow:

    Finally got around to (possibly) my favorite episode - 1.5 - Demon With A Glass Hand.

    I have enjoyed this particualr episode ever since I first viewed this one during the TNT run. Robert Culp and Arlene Martell wandering through the Bradbury building searching for fingers. Amazing episode that still packs a tremendous gut punch of an ending (that look on Consuelo's face when Trent reaches for her and she pulls away, tragic; the resigned look and then determination on Trent as he realizes he is all alone in the past). What an episode.

    I am still very impressed with the look of these remastered episodes. Don't remember much about the rest of the series, looking forward to exploring what is left (except the tumbleweed episode - their sounds got on my nerves :D).
     
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  19. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    It took Universal, a major studio, approximately two months to begin shipping replacement discs for a recent release that required a fix.

    Given the replication delays that are plaguing the industry, along with Kino not having all of the resources that a major studio like Universal has, I don’t think two months is that much time. It’s frustrating for sure but the delay at this point probably has more to do with replicator capacity issues than anything else.
     
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  20. Message #1160 of 1160 Jan 19, 2019 at 11:53 AM
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2019 at 11:59 AM
    Nelson Au

    Nelson Au Executive Producer

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    I indulged in Behold Eck. I will wait for the replacement disc to view Soldier.

    It’s still one of my favorite episodes. I could see a few plot holes and logic issues. Such as Eck’s eye that he gives to Dr. Stone, it’s three dimensional. Though I liked the logic of needing a glass lens for Eck to see while on Earth and needing meteoric quartz for humans to see Eck. Dr. Stone asking Miss Dunn to turn on the TV was a contrived move, why turn it on? To check on the news I suppose. But to really have Eck see a 2D image.

    Dr. Stone’s brother is still as annoying as ever!

    The main thing though that I liked about the episode is the heart it exudes despite everyone on the production side hating it. It has a nice alien whose not benevolent amd two humans who are intelligent and do their best to help Eck and it has a happy ending. Also nice to see the workaholic Dr. Stone see Miss Dunn with new eyes. I know it was meant to be a comedy likely on the level of Controlled Experiment, so I did miss the jokes. Like the 4 eyes on Eck. I also liked the way the effects are done to create Eck, both as the non-visible version and the luminous version. Very inventive. Though the Wah Chang original sketch is much more alien looking and could have been more effective.

    Another cool thing about the second season is the large number of vintage 1964 Fords used. Look at that Mustang Dr. Stone drives and the Ford that General Barton drove in Warm Heart Cold Hands.

    I listened to most of the audio commentary and it really is sad that the Lubin scores just are not collected together in a set to make up the second season score. I did do more reading and understand a little more about their sourcing. Though in listening to YouTube videos with the Lubin One Step Beyond tracks, Fear and Weird, those do not sound like direct lifts from One Step Beyond, but that the Outer Limits versions are re-recorded with slightly different arrangment that are more complete, if that makes sense. I don’t know the proper terminology for music. It’s the same composition for sure, but slightly different. So that’s the version and the other tracks used in the second season that would be great to eventually see come out on a season two set CD.
     

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