It is common knowledge that Star Wars was influenced by the Flash Gordon serials of the 1940s. So how cool was it that Buster Crabbe (Flash Gordon in the serials) appeared on stage with Mark Hamill during the Science Fiction Film Awards telecast? It aired in 1978 to recognize achievement in science fiction film for the year 1977.
Hamill shows up at 3:46 of Part II to introduce him. The entire show is worth watching from the beginning, especially to see the opening song and dance number.
I’m just posting Part I and II just to show the flow leading to the Crabbe and Hamill appearance. The special itself is split into 10 parts on YouTube. Rather than blow up the blog with 10 embedded videos just search for “Science Fiction Film Awards 1978” on YouTube if you’d like to watch the entire special. This was the fifth annual but first televised broadcast of the ceremony.
Here is the entire award show in 10 parts:
or if you want to jump straight to Buster…here is part 2.
Are you a fan of Flash Gordon? Follow HAIL FLASH on Facebook to appreciate the history of the character.
Poor Buck Rogers. Getting himself frozen for 500 years and finding himself in the future must have been quite a shock to him, especially when he learned that music and dancing in the 25th century was still stuck firmly in the era of disco and synth-pop mashups!
Thankfully, Wilma Deering was no doubt an excellent dance partner.
Today while perusing film sites on the internet it was brought to my attention that it was none other than Gil Gerard’s birthday, yep, Buck Rogers himself turned 70. So how about we celebrate his birthday with an original TV promo announcing the return of Larry ‘Buster’ Crabbe to sci-fi alongside Jack Palance…narrated by Casey Kasem?
Let’s not forget this Public Service Announcement on Technology by Gil Gerard back in 1981.
I ran across this sweet pop-up book over the weekend. I didn’t end up buying it because a few of the pages were torn, but I thought I would share it with you all nonetheless.
For some reason this book seems very familiar to me. I wasn’t a huge Buck Rogers fan so I don’t think I owned it as a kid, but I see on the cover it’s a Random House book, which means it was probably available through my elementary school’s “book club”. Maybe one of my grade school teachers had it available in our classroom.
The pages that did work were very awesome. Not only did the ships pop out on this page, but the pull tab on the right fired missiles!
At the end of the book, Buck and Wilma receive medals for their heroic actions.
I love the Dick Calkins box graphics on these puzzles sets from Hake’s. We had some old Buck Rogers stuff laying around my house when I was a kid, stuff that belonged to my father when he was a kid. I always wondered what happened to them, they just seemed to disappear one day. I was cleaning out the basement at the family homestead recently, when I found a bundle of them, ruined and warped, stuck in the bottom drawer of an old dresser. I was majorly bummed and tried to reclaim anything I could, but they were pretty far gone. For the life of me, I cannot figure out how they made it there, I assume he might have put them there, because nothing I would have treasured would have ever left my room if I tried to hide them. They were near his basement work bench, so maybe he was hiding his treasures near where he could find them.