Saturday, October 29, 2011

Assignment: Earth

*** (3 stars out of 5)

Enterprise has used the light-speed breakaway factor to visit Earth: 1968. Their mission is one of observation: how did the human race survive?

The answer is... someone else!

Thanks for visiting, I know how horrifyingly dangerous time-travel can be: how one careless mis-step will wipe out everything, so by all means use it frivolously to attempt to launch a back-door TV pilot.
Gary Seven, a 20th Century man in a business suit, is intercepted beaming in on "Assignment: Earth" from an advanced and hidden world. Raised on this alien planet since his ancestors were taken there 6,000 years ago, Seven was trained to help Earth mature safely. From his New York City office, with his clever shapeshifting cat Isis, and his plucky Earthling assistant Roberta Lincoln, Gary Seven helps avert nuclear disaster during the launch of a weapons platform. The literal-minded computer Beta 5 (hidden behind a drinks cabinet), and Gary's sonic screwdriver, I mean... servo will open doors and help him out of jams.

Roberta says she is one of those crazy rebel generation who wonder if they'll live to see 30. I'm glad a lot of them did, although this pilot did not sell. A real-time 15-minute rocket launch countdown is not as thrilling as once it must have seemed. Still, this could have been a good series along the lines of 'The Avengers' or 'Doctor Who'. In a parallel world I could be watching seasons of "Gary 7" on DVD.

That said, our regular characters look pretty useless standing around waiting for Gary to do things. Or looking gob-smacked while Gary does things. Or looking smug when Gary does things!

I did learn that it can be frustrating when our favourite Starfleet characters fade into the background while intriguing, technically skilled, emotionally limited people named Seven arrive from advanced civilizations to upstage them. But just this once.


  1. "this could have been a good series"

    Do you think it still could be?

    1. Well, sure! Mad Men plus Dr. Who... with a big budget it might even get noticed for a season, then get cancelled. Nothing wrong with the premise... Too bad there's no cold war anymore... I wonder if they could fight Middle Eastern terrorism and protect US oil interests overseas? In Go-Go boots? Yeah, I'd watch it.