“It is what I command!”
The Great Hollingsworth Morse directed many TV episodes through the years, including The Dukes of Hazzard and Adam-12. I had an Adam-12 lunchbox as a kid. That’s the only reason to bring that up.
Rocky Jones could sing the ‘Hike up the pants’ song.
This is another movie were the rapid fire riffing steps on a great deal of the dialogue. I don’t think anything ‘important’ was missed, but it is something to keep in mind when on screen conversations don’t make sense.
While not a large budget show by any means, it does look a bit better than its contemporary series Flash Gordon. Flash may have the heritage, but Rocky has the goods.
One of the things I like about this show is everyone is ‘smart’, even the girls. Vena got the drop on the first wave of pirates and figured out how to signal Rocky. Even the villains aren’t dumb, just mislead by evil.
Another ‘kids’ flick, and I think pretty well done for the time. The science isn’t exactly ‘hard’, but fits with how kids once viewed the world. It is too earnest for today’s time. Some of the repetition is also due to the fact these are 3 tv episodes strung together.
A small but important detail cut from the SOL, the stranded Double M (the booby-trapped ship the Space Pirates set up to catch Rocky) fired at the orbit jet. Also cut was the ‘introduce everyone to Paul’ scene, and yet another crack about Winky being for the ladies. At the beginning of the 3rd act, it is revealed that a message from Ophiuchius was intercepted.
It is hard not to see Bobby and not think he might be the seed that grew into Wesley Crusher. But I don’t know how popular Rocky Jones was at the time. From what I’ve read it is the format the show was filmed in is the reason for its survival.
Scotty (Winky) Beckett was one of the Our Gang comedy team (he was replaced by Alfalfa), and like all good child stars, was kicked off Rocky Jones for writing bad checks and having a gun battle with Mexican police. Maurice (Professor Newton) Cass died during the first season. All we needed was to have Sally (Vena Ray) Mansfield reduced to porn to have a full slate of tragedies.
Patsy (Cleolanthe) Parsons was only around for the first season of Rocky Jones. I guess after destroying her planet in Crash of the Moons, they couldn’t think of a way to use her. It is a shame, she really is a great villain. She must be feared by her people, and the United Planets (or whatever it is called) always takes her seriously.
When Rocky is plotting out where the Space Pirates are operating out of, it is amazing to know they put men in space with the same pencil and paper ‘equipment’.
Rinkman is another great villain. He is not afraid to try and double-cross Cleolanthe; that takes some noive.
Richard (Rocky Jones) Crane was a regular on Surfside 6, which may or may not mean anything to you.
James (Ken) Griffith also plays a sniveling villain in The Amazing Transparent Man.
Winky’s song doesn’t get any better in the unriffed version. Were they trying to make him a crossover star or did the producers think the kids were into lullabies.
I don’t really get how 5 guys are going to take over a planet? A station? What is Casa 7 anyway? Where are all the people?
About the chalk and sandpaper, my only explanation is Rocky Jones’s coat is like Batman’s utility belt.
For all the guns and warships, they sure do have plenty of fistfights. The one thing ‘blown up’ was off screen. Very mindful of the kiddies. Bring them to justice!
Rocky never directly confronts Cleolanthe in this story arc.
And a Superman cartoon, cool!
Watchability: 4 of 5. I love these kind of corny serials. Is it great filmmaking or acting, of course not. But I love the sincerity in it. The wholesomeness of everything about the show is great. They were making something for the kids and they delivered.
Missing the riffs: 3 of 5. I’m fond enough of Rocky Jones to watch it without the riffing. I even watch episodes that weren’t riffed.