Monday, July 26, 2010


More ads from my collection, this time for the 1980 NBC miniseries, The Martian Chronicles, starring Rock Hudson.

I enjoyed this three-part television miniseries adaptation of Ray Bradbury's classic novel/story cycle as a kid, and when I bought the DVD a few years ago, I enjoyed watching it again. Helmed by Logan's Run director Michael Anderson from a teleplay by the great Richard Matheson, The Martian Chronicles was something of a television event back in the Winter of 1980. It's far from perfect - the effects are remarkably primitive for a post-Star Wars production, and the adaptation lacks much of Bradbury's poetry - but it has a fascinating cast, an occasionally eerie atmosphere, and was remarkably ambitious for its time.

I expect I'll be writing a full review one of these days.


  1. I remember my family gathering in the living room to watch these when they first aired. I was very, very young (like, five) so I didn't really understand what was going on, but the barren visuals had a huge impact on me. It wasn't until I saw the series again years later that I realized that many of my drawings and doodles over the years had unconsciously drawn on motifs from the Martian Chronicles' set design (the martian masks, too).

  2. I, too, was very young, but I had the advantage of having a Bradbury fan for my mother. I was entranced by the Martians, and also terrified of them. But they were so quickly out of the series.

    The last time I viewed the series, many years ago, I too noticed the primitive sets and effects. But it was a very passable adaption of what was one of my favorite reads.

  3. I didn't catch this when it originally aired on NBC. No, my experience with it was during a high school trip to Germany in April 1983, dubbed in German, after an evening at Munich's Hofbrauhaus, and my first experience ever being drunk. I was trying to retranslate it back into English and it just wasn't working.

  4. I hope you get around to reviewing this. I was twelve or thirteen when it aired and I have seen it twice since. Still love it dearly. It captures a certain wistfulness and melancholy that I don't often see anymore. The miniatures work was astoundingly bad but the sets and the actors and the soundtrack and even the narration all make it highly watchable. I probably would hate any attempt at a remake.

  5. Was there anything Bernadette Peters didn't turn up in back then? She came out of the faucets hot and cold.