Before Star Wars, before Star Trek, before Marvel Comics got really rolling there was Lost in Space, and it was awesome. The Robinson family (John, Maureen, Will, Judy) and their pilot (Don West) launched a mission in 1997 to colonize our nearest celestial neighbor, Alpha Centauri. However, a stowaway, the maniacal Dr. Smith (Jonathan Harris), sabatoged their ship and sent them careering off course… and into a series of amazing — and sometimes completely insane — sci-fi adventures.
The series debuted on CBS in 1965 and only ran for three seasons, but it found new life in syndication. Lost in Space was created by mega-producer Irwin Allen (The Towering Inferno, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea), who actually convinced CBS to pass on Star Trek — trivia! Also, the catchy original theme music was created by a young John Williams (more trivia!).
Now Netflix has rebooted the campy original series as a serious sci-fi action-adventure. (Let’s pretend the bizarre 1998 movie version with William Hurt and Matt LeBlanc never happened, OK?) The new trailer dropped today and it looks truly extraordinary. EW spoke with the new series creator, Zack Estrin (Prison Break) about his vision for the series:
“This is a true family adventure in the vein of the original Jurassic Park. I don’t think there’s ever been another show like this on TV that has this size and scope, but also this emotion… I’ve shown this to my father, who’s 70, and my daughters, who are 11 and 14, and they all fell in love with it for different reasons.”
Estrin’s Lost in Space is visually spectacular, judging by the trailer. The updated look of the Robinson’s gear, their ship (The Jupiter 2), and the various environments are as good or better than anything we’ve seen in recent sci-fi films, such as Alien: Covenant or Interstellar. The original show’s iconic ‘Robot’ has also been heavily modified and has an alien origin of his own, which EW describes:
“This Robot is potentially lethal, with its own backstory and rendered with a combination of CGI and practical effects. ‘The Robot was one of the hardest pieces of casting to do in the show because it’s such an iconic thing and something you can really get wrong,’ Estrin said. ‘And it’s a different experience watching the show versus the trailer. You fall in love with this character. It’s less about how it looks than who it is.'”
Yesterday we discussed the planned Logan’s Run reboot, which aired a good decade after Lost in Space, but never developed quite the same following.Both shows dealt with the ramifications of dystopian futures, but there was just something about Lost in Space that grabbed audiences. It possible that the simple premise of Lost in Space was the key to its longevity: a family struggles to survive in space. And it worked brilliantly.
The 10-episode reboot drops a little over a month from now, and should draw from the same core Marvel, Altered Carbon, Black Mirror, and Stranger Things audiences. This is the perfect show for Netflix, who is striving to diversify rather than specialize when it comes to original content.
Did you watch Lost in Space as kid, are you excited to watch the reboot on Netflix? Let us know in the comments down below!
Lost in Space hits Netflix on April 13, 2018.
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