The Day After Tomorrow/Space Police:
Into Infinity/Star Laws

Fanderson £25.00 Reviewed by Andrew Pixley

"Of course, Anderson is one of your masters of Sixties telefantasy and a leading creative talent for techniques in the film industry as a whole. But if he tried to co-compose an inappropriately lightweight electronic music score to accompany a pilot for a new adventure series about Space Police, I'd say 'O1! Anderson! NO!'..."

Fanderson has applied its usual professionalism to this excellent DVD release of not one but two of the lesser seen pilots in the Gerry Anderson canon. The first, The Day After Tomorrow, will probably be better known to UK readers as lnto Infinity, the pilot's episode title under which it was broadcast twice. Fitting snugly between the shooting of the two seasons of Space: 1999, this tale of two family units heading out to explore Deep Space in a Time warping vessel was crafted as a semi-educational item to convey notions such as Einstein's theory of relativity, black holes and Doppler shift. Although graced with some good performances, direction and an excellent music score from Derek Wadsworth, it is the fundamental concept that falls flat. Rather than making physics a palatable piece of escapist hokum, the format is dragged down to the level of a scantly-illustrated physics text book. Nick Tate is as charismatic as ever and the show oozes with the charm associated with the golden era of Anderson... but something isn't quite ripht.

There's quite a lot not quite right with Space Police, Gerry's abortive 1986 pilot which eventually metamorphosed into the far more competent Space Precinct several years later. Anderson stalwart Shane Rimmer stars as Lt Chuck Brogan in command of a group of alien police officers who resemble people wearing slightly oversize cuddly animal heads. That is except when the officers go off on missions, whereupon they turn - for the most part - into galactronic puppets, leaving Rimmer little to do but engage in comic scenes with a cute robot back at base. Although it whispers of a greater potential, the story is clumsy, the characters still ill-defined, and the subtler nuances of humour seem to get rather lost. And then there's the music, developed by Anderson himself alongside his then-partner Christopher Burr. And it doesn't work. Even remotely.

In terms of extras, there are some comprehensive background notes and biographical details to both shows, the fascinatingly awful original concept document for Space Police and a picture gallery from the second pilot which puts other DVDs to shame. The print quality of both shows is excellent.

If you like Anderson curios it's well worth the money... but it can't really be recommended as a casual buy. 6


TV Zone Magazine - Issue 152 (June 2002)
Visit the TV Zone website.