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273 – Space: 1999 – Voyager’s Return

Earth has been naughty.  It’s been launching space exploration probes into deep space that kill all life they come in contact with.  Definitely one of their more enlightened programs.

What happens when Voyager One (AKA The Death Probe) finds its way back to the moon?  Can Alpha and a mysterious scientist named Linden take control of the probe and save all their lives?

And who are those aliens ships following Voyager One at a safe distance?

Ben and Eugene discuss Voyager’s Return.

2 thoughts on “273 – Space: 1999 – Voyager’s Return”

  1. Voyager’s Return is (I think) my favourite episode of Space 1999. It might be because it’s one of the few episodes where the Plucky Alphans manage to determine their own fate. Otherwise, it’s down to Jeremy Kemp’s sympathetic portrayal of Queller.

    I adore the set design for the interior of Voyager I. So much effort put into a set which will only appear on screen for less than 10 minutes. I like that the design is distinct from the Eagle’s, but has a familial resemblance, and fits with a craft launched 14 years prior to 1999.

    For such a simple device, the slow fade-in of the hologram of Aarchon on the Voyager flight deck is particularly spooky.

    Where does Linden get his pipe tobacco from? Is there a tobacco plot down in Hydroponics? If so, why aren’t there some hops for Tony Verdeschi’s beer?

    It’s interesting that (for once) Koenig doesn’t save the day, or do much of anything.

    It’s a pity that there wasn’t a sequel episode which explored the moral dilemmas of what should have been Koenig’s plan to weaponise the Queller Drive via some remote controlled drones. The QD would seem an effective answer to all those alien fleets coming to bomb Alpha each week.

    1. I certainly agree that this is an “odd episode out” because the Alphans, as you say, “…manage to determine their own fate.”

      It’s also odd because of how strongly the story focuses on Queller and his story and not Koenig. In fact, although we spent a fair amount of time discussing how rubbish Koenig is as a commander pretty much all the time, it’s the structure of the story that makes him crap in this one. There’s nothing “heroic” for him to do except keep extending the clock for Queller. In a vacuum, or perhaps on paper, that shows us that Koenig is a commander willing to support and bet on his team, but in the light of the reality of certain death for everyone, it just shows him to be irresponsible.

      Never let it be said that I’m not impressed with the set designers on Space: 1999. While sometimes I think their concepts are “misses” they always look like they’ve given a lot of thought to the design and the backstory behind it. Never more so than when we see technology from Earth. It all looks like it’s related and cohesive. We’ll see more Earth tech in upcoming episodes War Games and Dragon’s Domain, if not others.

      Voyager looked great, but the human-capable probe designed screamed Act 4 resolution.

      The Queller Weapon… what a clever idea.

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