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Land of the Lost news from around the world and beyond
(The oldest items start at the bottom of the page)

LOTL70 = the three seasons of the original Land of the Lost series of the 1970s featuring the Marshall family.
LOTL90 = the two seasons of the Land of the Lost series of 1990s featuring the Porter family.



Saturday Morning Fever

Michael Avila writes at Newsarama about how Hollywood is attempting to cash in on our old Saturday morning favorites, including Land of the Lost. But, how likely are we, the fans, to enjoy these remakes based on shows that, he says, weren't very good to begin with? He argues that LOTL and other '70s/'80s Saturday morning fare do not hold up very well when viewed with adult eyes (and brains); we judge these shows by the childhood memories they evoke. He even quotes Timothy Burke, pop culture professor at Swarthmore College and co-author of Saturday Morning Fever: Growing Up with Cartoon Culture: “Most of the shows we watched as kids only hold a lot of value for us because we watched them as kids...in the cold light of day, they're pretty awful, or the good, creative material in them are struggling to get out from underneath cheapness and bad dictates from anxious network flacks and hack producers.” I suppose Burke's remarks about the good struggling to get out from underneath the cheapness could be applied to LOTL. What do you think?

Read Avila's article: Hollywood's Got Saturday Morning Fever



Will the Real Phillip Paley Please Stand Up?

An interview with Phillip Paley in character as Chaka.



Now This Is How It's Done!


Unlike the bad retro TV article presented below (TV When?), this retroview, originally intended to be published in Cinescape before it went out of business, by John Kenneth Muir is very well done and contains information I'd not heard before about the original Land of the Lost via interviews with Allan Foshko, Linda Laurie, Herman Zimmerman, Michael Westmore, Walker Edmiston, Joe Kubichan, and Robert Lally.

 

 
TV When?

Here's another archival entry (courtesy of the wonderful Internet Archive) of another now defunct webpage. TV Now still exists, but the TV Then section by television columnist Steven Lance has gone the way of the dinosaur. In what is par for the course when writing for the internet, in this particular archived column, "Land of the Lost Dinosaurs", Mr. Lance makes a number of errors and typos that any true Lostie could have corrected for him. In the following excerpt, I've highlighted the errors in orange. Have I missed any?

"During the show's very successful run Saturday morning viewers were treated to elegant, albeit short, scenes of animated dinosaurs. The main characters were, the Marshalls, Will (Wesley Eure), his sister Holly (Kathy Coleman) and their Dad Rick (Spencer Mulligan). They build a very Tarzan-like tree house to be safe from the reptilian inhabitants, doing frequent battle with a Tyrannosaurus Rex referred to as "Scareface" because of a huge healed over gash along the right side of it's head. Holly named a lovable baby parasaurolophus Natasha (Tasha for short) after her mother who didn't make the trip with them.

In the second episode the Marshalls were befriended by a cute missing link type creature that was half ape and half human. Known as the Pakuni, the gentle Cha-ka (played by Phillip Paley) and his female companion, Sa (played by Sharon Baird) were befriended by the Marshalls. Later on in the series the character of Zarn was introduced. Like the Marshalls he too was lost in time. He may have also been in the wrong galaxy as he sounded an awful lot like Robby the Robot from Forbidden Planet. That's because Zarn's voice was provided by the former attorney to the Millionaire, Marvin Miller.

Making matters worse were a species of humanoid lizards not unlike the Gorn from Star Trek named Sleestaks. These highly intelligent bipedal lizards, were more than intelligent, they were an advanced race that held the secret to time travel and the Marshall's way back. Walter Koenig, known to Star Trek fans as Mr. Chekov, once told me that in the episode he wrote that introduced the head Sleestak, Ekik, the name actually got corrupted by the producers. The original name he wrote was "Eneg," which is Roddenberry's first name "Gene" spelled backward. Walter's way of tipping his hand to the man responsible for his long and successful career.

At the opening of the 1976/1977 season Rick Marshal made it out of the Land of the Lost only to be replaced by his brother, Jack (Ron Harper) the new father figure in the series. A year later they were all replaced on NBC's Saturday morning schedule on TV Then."


Lance seems to have cut-and-paste LOTL70 and LOTL90 into a single Frankenstein monster of a show! And mixed up the devolved Sleestak with their high-brow ancestors the Altrusians. Not to mention confusing Enik with his twin brother Ekik. I've also found errors in other of his columns. What happened to fact-checking and proof-reading?

Who is Scareface? I think he was in the Hellraiser movies.

I didn't realize Sa was Cha-ka's "female companion." That explains a lot. I guess Cha-ka was getting a little pakuni when he'd go missing on those Saturday nights.

And, c'mon, Holly named her pet dinosaur after her mother Natasha? Everyone knows her mother's name is Dopey.


   
Land of the Lost lunchbox and thermos Heavy Metal Memories

Whole Pop Magazine Online (a weblog of pop culture of the past) used to have a contest called Heavy Metal Memories which gave a series of clues that were designed to help the reader identify the character associated with a mystery lunchbox (of the classic metal variety). This link from the Internet Archive reveals the contest they did about the Land of the Lost lunchbox. Taken all together, the clues are pretty easy for a true Lostie to figure out, although clue #3 referencing an '80s singer might throw you off a bit since the show was on during the mid-70's!

Clue #1 He was a stranger in a strange land.
Clue #2 His food would've been too big for the lunchbox that bears his picture.
Clue #3 Other characters shared names with two Disney dwarfs, a 1980s singer, a Christmas decoration and a famous writing sister.
Clue #4 His name was screwed up even in the theme song.
Clue #5 He was usually called "Dad."
Clue #6 In the third season, he was replaced by his brother Jack.
Clue #7 He and his kids ended up in a prehistoric world after a time vortex opened up in "the greatest earthquake ever known."
   
And while we're on the subject of the LOTL lunchbox, in 2006 Hake's Americana and Collectibles was the authorized auctioneer of Michigan Senator Phil Arthurhultz's vast collection of lunchboxes, including LOTL. Oddly (it seems to me), Alex Winter, the General Manager of Hake's, commented "The Senator even has a lunchbox for as obscure a show as the Sid and Marty Krofft 1975 series, Land of the Lost. This is truly an amazing collection." An obscure show? C'mon, Mr. Winter...you just don't know!

And one final topic on the Land of the Lost lunchbox. I've noticed that while there are a number of photos of the large, main panels of said lunchbox available on the web, the images on the sides are not to be found. So, I finally scanned all six sides of the one in my possession (obtained at the San Diego Comic-Con some years ago). The images can be found here. Enjoy!
(By the way, does anyone know who painted the images for the lunchbox?)
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