Director: Harry Harris
Writer: Barney Slater
Cast: Guy Williams, June Lockhart, Mark Goddard, Marta Kristen, Billy Mumy, Angela Cartwright, Jonathan Harris, Werner Klemperer, and Larry Ward
Composer: None (Stock Music)
Air Date: 4/6/1966
Production #: 8526
With Don, John, Will, and the Robot absent from the Jupiter 2, Penny encounters Ohan (Larry Ward)—an interstellar fugitive in possession of a talking disk. Concealing the device from Officer Bolix (Werner Kelmperer)—a galactic lawman in pursuit of Ohan—Penny and Dr. Smith discover a metal ring that, when fastened around one’s neck, allows the user to transform any object into platinum. Naturally, Dr. Smith takes advantage of the collar—with terrible consequences for both himself and Penny.
By employing the “magic touch” trope in a science fiction setting, “All That Glitters” offers a poignant moral lesson for fans of Lost in Space. Also worth praising is the character transition of Dr. Smith, who, for arguably the first time in the entire series, exhibits genuine remorse for harming a member of the Robinson family.
After turning Ohan over to the authorities, Dr. Smith decides to keep the stolen collar for himself. Much to his chagrin, Dr. Smith later realizes that everything he touches, including the food on his breakfast plate, turns to solid platinum, preventing him from eating or drinking as long as the collar, now permanently clamped around his neck, remains in use—a fitting punishment for the most selfish and conniving character in this series.
During his interrogation of Maureen and the girls, Officer Bolix (an obvious parody of Colonel Klink from Hogan’s Heroes) comes across as a ruthless, intimidating enforcer of galactic law. That being said, the laughable costume worn by Bolix serves to undermine his credibility as a no-nonsense authority figure.
Hunting for Ohan, Bolix is accompanied by a pair of growling, bipedal creatures covered head to toe in black fur. Unconvincing by modern production standards, the monster guards will likely prompt snickering from the majority of viewers.
(Spoilers beyond this point)
“All That Glitters” should be commended for developing Dr. Smith—once a cruel and heartless saboteur—into a man who genuinely cares about the welfare of his host family. Specifically, Dr. Smith rescues Maureen and Judy from Officer Bolix and, having transformed Penny into a platinum statue, prepares to sacrifice his own life if doing so would restore the child to her former self—a touching display that, though somewhat incongruous with the character of “Colonel” Smith from early season one, may appeal to those of a sensitive nature.
Similar to “My Friend, Mr. Nobody,” “All That Glitters” forgoes hard science fiction in favor of pure fantasy. The poignant and heart-warming subject matter in this episode does, however, compensate for its implausible premise.
Overall Quality: 7/10
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