So many of the best episodes seem to be made for tv movies. Fugitive Alien, Master Ninja, and my personal favorite episode 305 - Stranded in Space. “Remember to bring more life saving liquid” still slays me to this day. What’s your favorite/favorites?
Riding With Death!
San Francisco International! Mushy wheels and all. And color me surprised when I found out it was the pilot (boomtish) for an actual series.
“You have a question for my face?”
Overdrawn at the Memory Bank is my favorite.
“I’ve got the fever for the flavor of a Fingal.”
(oily kid) “Mom…”
(Servo) “…why the poignant music?”
I was going to say Stranded in Space as well, until another post reminded me that Hamlet counts. So funny that I almost lost my head cake!
I’ve grown to like Riding With Death more over the years, too.
And isn’t Mitchell a TV piece?
Overdrawn forever. Such a magical episode.
Booze is good food and so is Mitchell. It was a movie, although I wish it would have gotten turned into a tv series…
That’s pretty amazing it was an actual film. The cast is straight off of TV, and even the camera equipment seems on loan from Quinn Martin. And the ADR explaining the disappearance of John Saxon’s character from the plot just enhances the “stitched together from TV episodes” feel.
For the longest time I thought Mitchell was a made-for-TV movie. Imagine my surprise…
But to answer the question, I’d probably say Fugitive Alien II. And I always kind of consider the Gamera films as “made-for-TV” even though I know they weren’t; there’s just something about those English dubs that screams “Saturday morning TV.”
ikr love the Gamera movies even without the bots they’re all just so darn funny lol Can’t wait to see our favorite meat filled turtle return with Gamera vs Jiger
It would’ve been “direct to video” if they’d made it 15 years later, but there’s a “TV cut” with scenes shot at the time, meaning they knew where it was headed.
Mitchell was an R-rated movie – the original has quite a bit of swearing (the yelling-at-the-kid scene was not “Buzz off!” in the original), and it’s interesting that they double-shot scenes (with swearing and without) with the expectation of it being shown on TV.
Well, it ultimately was, but not the way they expected.
Of the made-for-TVs? Overdrawn at the Memory Bank, hands down. It was part of what the producers hoped would be a series of serious SF tv-movies, and followed what was a pretty good production of The Lathe of Heaven.
In its original, it’s not bad – the Brains had to hack out quite a bit of it to get it to fit into the show’s format, which is what makes it look disjointed – but truth to tell, it deviates quite a bit from the original John Varley novella.
As someone who was a child in the '70s, Made For TV movies are deeply embedded in my psyche. I quite like San Francisco International and Code Name: Diamond Head.
But none of them make me laugh as much as the mellow grooviness of Ben Murphy and Riding With Death. It’s like a network hired the writers for Dynamite magazine to do a TV series.
That is quite an excellent film and miles better than the muddy adaption made later.
The answer, my friend, is blow it out your ass.
MITCHELL: THE SERIES, oh gawd, I could almost write fanfiction around that premise.
As someone should.