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10

The Time Tunnel

As stated in previous Neatorama articles, the 1960's was the decade of many notable cultural things but one that has escaped the net until now was the Master of Disaster - Irwin Allen.

Irwin Allen, later known for his 'disaster' films such as The Poseidon Adventure and The Towering Inferno, was responsible for several television series during that decade - Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Lost in Space, and - The Time Tunnel.

They all made for great watching but The Time Tunnel was an especial favorite of mine, and, as usual per my favorite TV programs of that era (like Thriller), it was canceled after just one season, for 30 episodes.

In a nutshell, the series concerned a top-secret government project to develop a method for time and space travel. But the program is in jeopardy due to its cost, and a Senator visits the secret facility in the first episode to demand an accounting. When one of the time scientists realizes that his project will be shut down unless progress is made, and fast, he takes it upon himself to prove out the time travel device, prematurely, it seems. He becomes lost in time and one of his friends and colleagues goes after him and is also lost. Now the government couldn't very well shut down the project and doom the two men, and so began a weekly series of time travel adventures. The two men could be tracked but not rescued for some technical reason, and each attempt at rescue merely launched the two men to a different time, space, and new adventure.

It was a costly program to produce, which is eventually what killed it, but Irwin Allen did the best he could - just look at those sets! Below is a short documentary about the series, with commentary by the starring actors, and below that is the first episode, wherein we see that our two lost time travelers find themselves aboard the Titanic on April 14, 1912. Gee, what could possibly go wrong?

This and other episodes are available on YouTube, but in the 'miniature' format often employed to evade copyright claims. DVD's are also available and it should surprise no one that I own the complete set. The series was remade in 2002 so be sure to look for those from 1966-1967.

Short documentary about The Time Tunnel.

Season 1, Episode 1 (small format due to copyright)


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Interesting; that is one cartoon that I never watched for some reason. Was probably on at the same time as something else I did watch, in a time long before VCR. We watched things like Fireball XL-5 and others that I will have to recollect. This was all in Fort Worth, Texas, and I know that our local market did not carry all programming that was available. But we did have Icky Twerp and Slam-Bang Theater; try to beat that.
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A good list. Impressive yet incomplete. How did I grow up to such a sarcastic subversive? What rotted my brain more than monsters and superheroes?

Roger Ramjet you yahoo.

How many cartoons from the 60's used words like existentialist?
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I lied because I decided to do Kolchak: The Night Stalker next instead (it's in the queue). Spur of the moment decision. Glad you like these; most people have no idea as to what I am even talking about. Congrats on your cultural advancement!

Coming sometime:
The Invaders
Fiend Without a Face
Night Gallery
Search
Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea
The Giant Claw
The Killer Shrews
Clutch Cargo
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Not sure about what. Not that it matters. All I can say is that once, for quite awhile, I did everything with my pinkie finger extended out at a weird angle. Drove. My. Mom. Nuts. Especially at the supper table.

Keep up the good work.
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