Thursday, April 06, 2017

Land of the Giants - "Chamber of Fear" (S2E9 - November 16, 1969)

After being curious for years I finally caught a random episode of the Irwin Allen TV show Land of the Giants (1968-1970). I never saw any of the Allen television productions as a youth simply because they were never rerun in my area, so when they began to be issued on DVD years ago I sought out the titles I found more interesting. As a consequence, I've seen many episodes of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea and The Time Tunnel but this show has flown under my radar because I found the title a little...... silly.

Now that I've seen an example I have to say 'silly' is hardly the word I would use to describe it. I would call it dull, labored, obvious and tedious to the point of madness long before calling it silly. The episode in question was entitled Chamber of Fear and involves one of the miniature humans being captured by a sculptor/jewel thief (really) who is currently embroiled in a disagreement with his thief partner about the best way to cut a stolen diamond. The other miniature people strike a deal to help the sculptor (and his harpy wife) find the now hidden gemstone if he will release their tiny friend. Cue much running around oversized sets, threatening dogs and cats and some ridiculous attempts to establish tension. 

I was so bored it took me three tries to get all the way through this hour long program. Everything is so drawn out and predictable that I hated having to suffer through to the end of each scene. The situations were all laughable - and not in the fun, science fictional way I had hoped for either. It was all so stupid and boring watching these people go through their unsurprising motions that, by the end, I felt angry. This was ten solid minutes of story stretched out to an hour long plod. 

Maybe this was a particularly bad episode and there are better ones lurking among the 51 produced but DAMN! If they are all this slow and uninvolving I can't see how the show survived two seasons. Anyone out there able to recommend episodes of this show worth watching?

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