We’ve been given a bit of a gift from Anderson Entertainment.
The “A Christmas Miracle” episode of Terrahawks is up on YouTube for the next thirty days, for free (there are embedded ads, but they’re related to the subject).
After an undeserved absence from TV screens for ages, Gerry Anderson returned to a puppet production with Terrahawks. Almost the entire series was written by Tony Barwick, using a variety of bizarre pen names.
And although the series seemed like a bad dream to diehard Anderson fans, it had its own charms and wonderful trademark Anderson touches, many of which are in this episode. Gerry always assembled the best teams with an eye to detail and this episode brings that out, with Zelda wearing epaulettes, Yung-Star wearing a German war helmet, and even the end credits that feature a Santa-clad Zeroid!
Barwick’s script is outrageous in its outrageousness and depends on the kind of cultural knowledge only those raised in America and England are likely to have — there’s plenty of humorous dialogue and set pieces that “outsiders” just won’t understand.
The one sore point here is that even though the video is available as 720p, it was originally shot on 16mm film with a lower resolution (that damn budget! if only they could have done 35mm, as his other productions!) — and this is painfully contrasted with the ad breaks that are modern and full hi-def.
Had Gerry had to do this series today, his budget would have been no problem at all. Doing hi-def video is cheap and he could have slapped digital filmlook onto it. (In fact, he could have played with the entire color palette in post, as everything is jiggered like that these days.)
Anyway, first a bunch of screensnaps (moreso than usual because this episode will disappear from YouTube soon).
And now the video:
And a bonus videos! Had Gerry had the budget, this is what the Terrahawks theme would have been, what Richard Harvey intended it to be:
And with the series titles:
Quite a difference, huh? What might have been! What should have been!
Gerry Anderson’s Firestorm: Onward To Funding A Pilot!
Kickstarter: Gerry Anderson’s Firestorm
Gerry Anderson Is Go!
Kickstarter: Gerry Anderson’s Gemini Force One
Official Gerry Anderson Tribute Site
R.I.P. TV Producer/Creator Gerry Anderson