Lost in Space Episode 35: The Prisoners of Space

General Information

Director: Nathan Juran

Writer: Barney Slater

Cast: Guy Williams, June Lockhart, Mark Goddard, Marta Kristen, Billy Mumy, Angela Cartwright, Jonathan Harris, and Dawson Palmer

Composer: None (Stock Music)

Air Date: 10/19/1966

Production #: 9506

 

Overview

While testifying before an alien jury, the Robinsons and Major West are forced to answer for a series of criminal acts committed in outer space. Upon further lost-in-space-the-prisoners-of-spaceinvestigation, Judge Iko of the Galactic Tribunal determines that Dr. Smith alone is responsible for the crimes in question.

By paying homage to “The Derelict” and “The Reluctant Stowaway” from season one, “The Prisoners of Space” will appeal to those who enjoy the first two episodes of Lost in Space. Specifically, Barney Slater’s narrative offers a clever, satisfactory conclusion to the initial story arc featured in this series.

 

Pros

lost-in-space-the-prisoners-of-spaceDuring the courtroom sequences, an ominous fog effect is employed in conjunction with the spectacle of spooky, physically grotesque aliens lurking in the background—a terrifying display that works to heighten, if only on a subconscious level, the apprehension that viewers will experience upon witnessing Will, Major West, and Professor Robinson defend themselves against accusations of a heinous variety.

 

Cons

In contrast to the bubble creatures of “The Derelict,” Judge Iko employs vocal sounds rather than electrical impulses when communicating with humans—alost-in-space-the-prisoners-of-space discontinuity that Slater fails to address in his aforementioned narrative.

Fearing that Smith will incriminate himself if required to testify, Will and the Robot assist the not-so-good doctor in carrying out his escape plan. In doing so, however, both characters endanger the welfare of the entire Robinson family, every member of which stands falsely accused as a result of Dr. Smith’s conduct.

 

Analysis

(Spoilers beyond this point)

lost-in-space-the-prisoners-of-spaceIn the penultimate scene, the Robinsons sign a petition to spare Dr. Smith the punishment that he deserves. Though anticlimactic, the resolution to this episode serves as a testament to the kind, forgiving nature of the Robinson family.

 

Concluding Comments

“The Prisoners of Space” is a haunting, atmospheric episode. For this reason, fans of the sci-fi/horror crossover genre are advised to view this entry.

 

Overall Quality: 9/10

 

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2 thoughts on “Lost in Space Episode 35: The Prisoners of Space

  1. This is my number six ranked episode for the classic down home, cozy and fun, colored mid season..my second favorite season of the series, despite its much maligned and unwarranted status.. :-]

  2. Here is a popular episode on the season, and indeed, it is one of the top ten. Again, the humor is not over-the-top yet, but some fun bits are in play. The whole story idea is cool, and the old B&W footage from way back in episode number one and episode number two is a very cool flashback memory..