Is this the one with a robot dog? – Space: 1999 #7
I’ve never watched a single solitary episode of Space: 1999, but I’ve also never let my ingorance get in the way of me taking a look at a tie-in book. So here I go, once more plunging headlong into uncharted waters.
For those like me who were born too late or were just indifferent to the damn thing, Space: 1999 (ah, the old future) followed a group of humans, led by Commander John Koenig, trapped on the Moon (Moonbase Alpha) when an explosion sent Earth’s satellite hurtling through space. They did a great job distancing it from Star Trek with the main character’s name — why not just call him “John Nimoy”? But I’ll say this for the show — I like its funkified intro:
Perhaps the best thing I can say about Charlton’s comic version is that the artist, Pat Boyette, did a nice job of depicting Martin Landau’s distinct look as Koenig. You need to nail the eyes and the upper lip when you’re drawing that guy, and nail them he did.
Both stories in this issue are scripted by Mike Pellowski with art from Boyette. The first, “The Metamorph,” is a straight adaptation of the opening episode of the show’s second (and last) season. In that episode and in this issue a metamorph (surprise), Maya, joins the Alphans. Here’s her first appearance:
To make a long story short, her father isn’t a very nice guy and their planet blows up and Maya falls in with the Alphans:
Is it just me, or do Commander Koenig’s words and look have a lascivious quality about them? Maybe?
The second story, “Escape from Vipon,” has most of the crew held captive by evil lizard people who look a lot like the Gorn from Star Trek. They want weapons in exchange for their hostages, but the remaining Alphans aren’t going to oblige. You see, they have a plan. First, one of them allows himself to be captured while uttering a Charlton-Heston-in-The-Planet-of-the-Apes inspired epithet, while Maya (fitting in quite nicely with her new crewmates) masquerades as that red cannister behind them:
She follows the Vipons back to where her friends are being held and frees them:
On their way out, Commander Koenig can’t resist showing that James T. Kirk isn’t the only outer space hero that can throw a punch:
He probably could have given the Shat a few pointers on how to battle warlike lizard people:
There’s also a brief two-page text story which I didn’t read. Short attention span, I guess.
I enjoyed Boyette’s art, as I did on an issue of Korg that I talked about a while back. I especially like his work on the cover, though it doesn’t seem that it was put together with a cover in mind — note how the “Space: 1999” blocks some of the figures. That kind of bugs me.
But he nailed Landau’s lip.