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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

Land of the Lost: The Zarn "The Zarn"
Written by Dick Morgan
Directed by Bob Lally
Original airdate: September
13, 1975

This page last updated 5/29/2020

The Marshalls encounter a being from another world.

Read the complete story summary by Nels Olsen

Didja Know?

Van Snowden played the physical form of Zarn and Marvin Miller provided the fantastic voice.

Didja Notice?

The Marshalls have really spiffed up their cave since first season! The stone floor is swept clean, they've constructed bed frames for their sleeping bags so they don't have to lay on the floor, a fire pit and an oven, wooden table and chairs.

Speaking of new furniture, why do the Marshalls have 4 wooden chairs for a family of 3? I guess they figured on entertaining frequently! (Of course, Cha-ka does like to drop by for dinner, doesn't he?

Rick and Will comment that the distance between Mist Marsh and High Bluff is about 1 kilometer or 2/3 of a mile.

Will remarks that the Pakuni won't go near Mist Marsh.

This episode is the first time the specific age of one of the characters is mentioned; Rick comments that Holly is 12 years old. (Holly repeats this in "Baby Sitter" when she complains about having to put up with her brother for 12 years.)

Throughout the Mist Marsh scenes in Acts I and II, you can see that Rick has the map of the Land tucked into his belt (a little hard to see because the map is a similar khaki color as his outfit). Later, at 15:50 he is seen working on the map at High Bluff. We see this map again in later episodes.

Besides being semi-invisible, Zarn's ship seems unusually designed. The outline of lights gives it the shape of a one-man fighter ship as seen in many science-fiction epics like Battlestar Galactica. But it's obviously large, with corridors and rooms inside.
Zarn's ship

Sharon says she was walking on Ford Street in Indianapolis when she suddenly found herself here in the Land of the Lost. Rick is astounded, as he grew up on that same street. This is a real street in Indianapolis, Indiana. It's a pretty short street, so there's a relatively small number of houses Rick Marshall could have grown up in. Follow Ford Street on Google Maps' Street View...which house do you think he grew up in?

Sharon soon reveals she went to the same high school as Rick, Fillmore High. This appears to be a fictitious school in Indianapolis. Presumably, the school is named for Millard Fillmore (1800-1874), President of the United States 1850-1853.

Rick mentions a Mr. Javelin who was the boys' vice principal at Fillmore High. Sharon tells him that the girls' vice principal was Miss Tanner. Will even compliments her on dinner, something he's not normally inclined to do.

Holly seems to be at least somewhat adept at making carrot bread and carrot cake, as both are made and served by her in this episode.

At 13:47 on the DVD, as Sharon is about to cook breakfast for the Marshalls, she is holding a bowl of rainbow-colored eggs. I guess they come from the rainbow-colored chickens seen in "Skylons"!

At 14:17 on the DVD, we can see some of the extra articles of clothing the Marshall's have as they are being washed and dried on a rock. One of the articles appears to be Will's blue shirt (which he wore in the first season but seems to have abandoned in the second!).

At 14:40 on the DVD, Holly mentions an incident when Feeney's dog jumped all over her and got her nice clothes all dirty.

At 17:36 on the DVD we see that Rick is sleeping on the stone floor of the cave with just a blanket; he has given up his bunk and sleeping bag for Sharon.

Like the Marshalls, Sharon apparently chooses to sleep in her clothes all the time!

Rick mentions that Sharon's last name is Williams.

Zarn says there are 31,000 human being types in the universe and also mentions "human being planets". Sounds like a universe teeming with human life...must be the Star Trek universe!

I think Sharon was more than just a robot; perhaps a being without corporeal form who used the robot body of Sharon to fool the Marshalls. She twice says to Rick that she is not of his planet rather than that she is merely a robot. Notice also she continues to speak to him after her body has self-destructed.

There is a music video of the Peter Gabriel song "Sledgehammer" that depicts a version of Gabriel as an eerily Zarn-like creature, complete with a set that looks like the light ship. Watch the video below (the "Zarn" appears in the last 20 seconds):

Notes from the audio commentary by Wesley Eure and Kathy Coleman

Wesley says he still has the map of the Land of the Lost that appears in this episode.

Kathy reveals that she got to take home most of the real animals that appeared on the series, like guinea pigs and chickens. She lived on a ranch in Simi Valley at the time of shooting.

Actress Brook Bundy, who played Sharon in this episode, also worked with Wesley on the soap opera, Days of Our Lives, at the time. Kathy comments that she remembers that Brook tried to take home the outfit she wears in this episode!

Notes from the audio commentary by Brook Bundy and Van Snowden

Van must have attempted some research of the show before doing the commentary, but he makes a mistake in saying that the Chiodo brothers did the dinosaur effects for the series. In reality, they did the effects for LOTL90, but not LOTL70; LOTL70 had dinosaurs designed by Wah Chang and animated by the Excelsior Animated Moving Pictures Studio, headed by Gene Warren, Sr.

Brook did a couple of Nightmare on Elm Street movies (sequels 3 and 4).

Memorable Dialog

funny feeling.wav
some kind of a craft.wav
it doesn't belong here.wav
seen you face a 5-ton tyrannosaurus.wav
picking through my brain.wav
mind chime.wav
a maze you can't see.wav
small world.wav
it's been just me, Daddy and Will.wav
Dad is so lonely.wav
cold fingers poking in my brian.wav
think softly.wav
a smoldering fire.wav
you human beings.wav
you Earth being.wav
Zarn is amused.wav
good night, Rick Marhsall.wav
believed what I wanted.wav

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