|The crew of the Jupiter 2 - Lost in Space|
|The crew of the U.S.S. Cygnus|
- The Black Hole
But...is it possible that Lost in Space was rebooted in 1979...as The Black Hole? I rewatched The Black Hole awhile back (not having seen it in years) and thoughts of Lost in Space began to creep into my mind...!
I'm a huge fan of The Black Hole (1979). I saw this wonderfully imaginative movie in the theater with my family the first week that it came out so many decades ago. It's no secret that many aspects of the film borrow elements from many diverse sources - too numerous to fully mention here, but a few of the influences appear to be: Forbidden Planet, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Star Wars, Doctor Who ("The Ark" and "The Ark in Space"), numerous episodes of The Starlost, The Poseidon Adventure, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Night of the Living Dead (the "zombie-fied" Cygnus crew-members!), Dante's Inferno...and even The Bible!
Yet, my most recent viewing of the film leads me to believe that several...but by no means all - elements of The Black Hole might possibly (I'll say that again...**possibly**) have been at least partially influenced by the characters and even several episodes of Irwin Allen's Lost in Space TV series, most notably "The Reluctant Stowaway", "The Derelict", "War of the Robots", "The Ghost Planet" and "Condemned of Space".
First the characters: Captain Dan Holland (Robert Forster) - a strong, heroic middle-aged man not unlike Lost in Space's Professor John Robinson. 1st Officer - Lt. Charles Pizer (Joseph Bottoms) is a brash, impetuous younger man, not unlike LIS' Major Don West. Dr. Kate McCrae (Yvette Mimieux) is the "mother-figure" of the crew, not unlike LIS' Dr. Maureen Robinson. Harry Booth (Ernest Borgnine) shares many character traits with LIS' Dr. Smith - mainly cowardice and an eager willingness to deceive - even the names of both characters are somewhat similar - Smith / Booth. Also, Dr. Hans Reinhardt (Maximillian Schell) is **very** similar to the initial (pre-humorous) characterization of Dr. Smith in the first 6 episodes of LIS! Check out various scenes in the movie where Reinhardt commands the Red Robot Maximillian to do his bidding and / or act as his protector - this is very similar - almost identical to the early episodes of LIS where Dr. Smith had complete command of the Robot (B-9) and used him to terrorize (and in fact attempt to murder) the Robinson family on more than one occasion! Lastly, V.I.N.C.E.N.T. (voiced by Roddy McDowall), the heroic Robot of The Black Hole is not unlike the Robot on LIS - the robots in both productions have distinctive, friendly personalities - both robots quote "the classics" as well as spout literary cliches - and both even have similarly designed round heads that have the ability to "rise and fall" at will. Both robots also have the unusual ability to spin their bodies around and travel forwards, while facing backwards! I haven't mentioned Dr. Alex Durant (Anthony Perkins) or Old B.O.B. (voiced by Slim Pickens) - as far as I can determine, neither character has a Lost in Space counterpart.
Several scenes in The Black Hole have counterparts to various Lost in Space episodes. For instance, in "The Derelict", after avoiding a collision with a comet, the Jupiter 2 is drawn inside a mysterious derelict spaceship. A similar scene occurs in the opening minutes of The Black Hole.
|The Jupiter 2 encounters a derelict spaceship|
- Lost in Space ("The Derelict")
|The Palomino encounters the U.S.S. Cygnus, a derelict spaceship|
- The Black Hole
|The Robot adrift - Lost in Space - ("Condemned of Space")|
|V.I.N.C.E.N.T. adrift - The Black Hole|
|Dr. Smith, The Robot and Robby the Robot|
in Lost in Space - ("Condemned of Space")
|V.I.N.C.E.N.T. and Captain S.T.A.R. - The Black Hole|
|The Robot and Robby the Robot|
in Lost in Space - ("War of the Robots")
|Maximillian and Dr. Rheinhardt - The Black Hole|
|The "zombie-fied" crew of the Cygnus - The Black Hole|
|The "faceless" aliens of Lost in Space - ("The Ghost Planet")|
|Harry Booth and V.I.N.C.E.N.T. - The Black Hole|
|Dr. Smith and the Robot (B-9) - Lost in Space|
The Black Hole and all images, characters and logos are copyright (c) and trademark Walt Disney Productions. All photos are used for illustrative purposes only.
Lost in Space and all images, characters and logos are copyright (c) and trademark 20th Century Fox and Irwin Allen Productions. All photos are used for illustrative purposes only.