Lost in Space Episode 3: Island in the Sky

General Information

Director: Tony Leader

Writer: Norman Lessing

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

Composer: Johnny Williams

Air Date: 9/29/1965

Production #: 8503

 

Overview

lost-in-space-island-in-the-skyAfter losing contact with Professor Robinson, Major West lands the Jupiter 2 on a mysterious planet known as Priplanus. Meanwhile, Dr. Smith reprograms the Robot to kill every “nonessential” crew member—with a terrible outcome.

“Island in the Sky” will appeal to Lost in Space fans for its riveting action sequences and captivating character conflicts. Especially worth commending are the frequent clashes between Dr. Smith and Major West, who establish a permanent rivalry in this episode.

 

Pros

Still a dark and sinister villain at this point in the series, Dr. Smith hijacks the Jupiter 2 during a tense maneuver, attempts to kill Professor Robinson bylost-in-space-island-in-the-sky sabotaging his parajets, and compels the Robot to attack young Will after arriving on the planet—actions that heighten the suspense, drama, and disaster elements of Norman Lessing’s narrative.

On the other hand, Major West will earn praise for his heroic and quick-thinking responses to the conniving Dr. Smith. When coerced into aborting a rescue mission, for example, Major West reacts by destabilizing the Jupiter 2, threatening Dr. Smith into defusing the Robot, and locking his unwanted guest in a freezing tube for the remaining journey—all clever decisions that confirm Major West as a worthy opponent to Dr. Smith.

 

Cons

None.

 

Analysis

lost-in-space-island-in-the-skyIntroducing an alien pet (Debbie the Bloop) for Penny, a comical relationship between the Robot and his disparaging master, and a heated confrontation between Dr. Smith and Major West, “Island in the Sky” solidifies a number of traits that would define each character throughout this series.

 

Concluding Comments

Combining science fiction and adventure aspects with a strong human antagonist, “Island in the Sky” should be requisite viewing for enthusiasts of the early Lost in Space episodes. Specifically outstanding are the performances of Jonathan Harris and Mark Goddard, who exhibit an intense and natural chemistry with each other.

 

Overall Quality: 10/10

 

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2 thoughts on “Lost in Space Episode 3: Island in the Sky

  1. I actually went to where the crash sequence was shot when I lived in CA. It was eerie seeing it, it was like the Robinsons and Smith had been there but were long gone.

    That crash scene, especially the first shot with the sun partially seen behind the tall rock, was very realistic for its time.

    I believe in “Forbidden World” when the J2 crashed yet again, some of this footage was colorized. Also the wires pulling the 4 foot miniature J2 can be seen in the first shot (In “Forbidden World” that is)

    This is one of the best episodes; actually the first 5 were superior as most know.