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THE TIME TUNNEL-Revenge of Robin Hood, Kill Two By Two,


Chase - Posted on 08 August 2009

THE TIME TUNNEL

THE REVENGE OF ROBIN HOOD

Writer-Leonard Stadd

Dir-William Hale

 

This episode was originally called just ROBIN HOOD. A book on THE TIME TUNNEL called it this, giving away that the writer of this book used only the promotional storylines, and didn't bother to check the actual episodes. The same situation exists for THE DAY THE SKY FELL IN. Originally it was called THE DAY THE SKY FELL DOWN. But in the actual episode is THE DAY THE SKY FELL IN. Writers who only have a fleeting or passing interest in shows shouldn't write about them.

 

The narration tells us the same old thing as Doug and Tony fly in time toward a castle of some kind. They land, separated again. Tony lands first...in a shut dungeon cell. Doug rolls in and lands behind a throne curtain (not a thrown curtain but a throne--oh, heck, behind a throne of King John!). In the main throne room, the Earl of Huntington wants the King to sign the Magna Carta (so much for story suspense) which will limit the power of the king and establish more rights to common men. It only needs the King's signature and was made up by the Counsel of Barons. The king tells him no and it is treasonous. His men attack the Earl who fights them all rather bravely. For once, Doug doesn't involve himself but only listens; however during the fight, the curtain is torn down and Doug finds himself face to face with the bearded Earl. Doug and the Earl are held, captured. Now hold onto yourselves (as the little lady in POLTERGEIST said)--things get a bit confused here. The above paragraph is included in the cliffhanger tagged onto INVASION. The teaser to THE REVENGE OF ROBIN HOOD also contains it and then ends with the men holding and shoving Doug and the Earl. ACT ONE to THE REVENGE OF ROBIN HOOD starts with the titles over a freeze frame of Doug and the Earl beginning man handled by the men, then act one continues with...

 

The following paragraph is not in the cliffhanger--the men shove Doug, who is touted as his accomplice, and the Earl in front of the King John (aptly played by the always great John Crawford and in very good makeup--it's difficult to tell he is the same man in each and every role he is in--as a child, I never realized this was LOST IN SPACE'S THE TIME MERCHANT, VOYAGE'S Alpha in TIMELOCK, GIANT'S GRAVEYARD OF FOOLS aide, and various other characters in other TIME TUNNELs!) King John calls them traitors and his small, fox-like aide, Dubois, asks the King to spare their lives so that they may tell what they know. Doug claims he is not the Earl's servant. The King tosses the charter at them. The Earl remains steadfast: the Counsel of Barons will call out their armies. The King tells him, "You will hang. Take them to the dungeon. Make them beg for death."

Tony hides as the two are brought to the dungeon. (This paragraph was only in the first act (ACT ONE) of the actual episode THE REVENGE OF ROBIN HOOD. It was not in the cliffhanger but was in ACT ONE.

 

The following paragraph was in both ACT ONE and in the CLIFFHANGER from last week's INVASION episode. Doug and the Earl are chained to the wall of the stone dungeon, hands over their heads. There will be a search for more men. After asking Doug who he is, the Earl apologizes to Doug who tells him the Magna Carta will be signed. The Earl tells Doug, "At least you'll die for a good cause."  Two men heat up iron rods in hot coals. Engelard, the sadist-sniveling coward-blame the one who told me to do it--is one of these men. This set will be used later in MERLIN THE MAGICIAN. Engelard tells the Earl and Doug they won't live to see the charter signed. He asks where the counsel of barons is and moves the iron rod at Doug's face! Doug obviously doesn't know where! THIS ENDS THE CLIFFHANGER SEQUENCE FROM LAST TIME. Whew!  

 

ACT ONE continues on from here. The rod is waved to the other side of Doug's face. Then Engelard starts on the Earl. Doug bluffs that he knows in order to keep the torturer away from the Earl. Tony hits the soldier from behind and gets his sword, then fights Engelard as another guard tries to get inside the locked room. This man runs for help. Tony pushes Engelard back and is kicked. Tony throws a net (?) over the man who tosses it. Engelard tries to use a sword on Tony but hits the wall with it (and if you look close, the sword seems to go right into the wall--a movable prop or a flimsy wall?!?). Tony throws him into a wall as more soldiers try to break in with a log or something. Doug grabs Engelard with his legs and Tony punches him down. Most of this music sounds lifted from other sources, among these PRINCE VALIANT.

 

The time tunnel watches all this. Kirk wants to try a transfer but the fix is not firm. It is June 1215. Ann wants to try the homing post but Kirk reminds her they've tried it before and failed. Ray and Ann feel they've improved its capabilities.

 

Tony and Doug use the hot coals and the manual blower to heat up the malleable iron bars on the window. The Earl states it won't work and they should be ready to fight (die?). They get the bars out and Doug shouts this out. He cleans the window sill of the hot ash with a shovel (did they have shovels then?). Tony jumps out but Engelard gets up and fights the Earl, who tells Doug to go next. Doug jumps out but then the other soldiers break in and recapture the Earl who is slapped by Engelard. Doug tells Tony, "They caught him."  They figure this is King John's time and that the barons may be at Runymede.

 

We hear some of the pilot music. Techs put the homing post into the time tunnel and run out as the reading is 1 equal to 14 point 3-6 over 11 (huh?). If they can only touch this rod, both of them can be retrieved. It activates and the hum builds up and the rod vanishes. After they rebuild the power, they can restore the image.

Men remount the iron bars on the windows and the Earl is slapped some more. Daytime---men ride from the castle. HALT--this riding men fixation that this episodes has is really annoying. I wouldn't mind it if this was new footage or actually established something as the usual stock footage of THE TIME TUNNEL episodes almost always does in credible fashion. In THE REVENGE OF ROBIN HOOD, this is a total disaster as it is boring to see men whose faces we can't see ride to and fro in the forest, to the castle, from the castle, over hills, past rivers. While this sounds like a variation, it is not. I would swear the same riding scenes were used over and over again and again, making this the most boring episode. And it is confusing, being difficult to tell if it is Robin (who is the Earl by the way) and his men, Tony, Doug, or the King's men riding. This doesn't pertain as much to the fight sequences as to the riding ones. I can just see the gang at MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER panning the riding aspects of this--and rightly so. They once did a movie which starred Whit Bissel and John Hoyt as well as Ceaser Romero and the dad from LEAVE IT TO BEAVER---and there was too much footage in the move (the first THE LOST CONTINENT) of rock climbing over and over and the guys felt tortured by this. Well, I must say, I was tortured by the riding sequences in this episode in the same fashion--may be worse.

 

I digressed. I have to, to keep me interested. It isn't that THE REVENGE OF ROBIN is that bad...it's just boring. With all the depictions of ROBIN HOOD in the past in films and TV and all the depictions that came after THE TIME TUNNEL, the TIME TUNNEL version is the most boring and dull ever. They don't pick a light hearted slant, nor a more dark version. It isn't fun, nor serious, nor relevant. This episode, more than any other, was a definite ride, run, ride, jump, ride, fight, ride, captured, escape, show. It is the most difficult to stay awake for. I prefer the Micheal Praed-Jason Connery version ROBIN OF SHERWOOD which aptly used both legends of Robin (more on this later). There was also the Kevin Costner movie (PRINCE OF THIEVES) which was well made even if he was totally miscast. Now Turner Broadcasting has yet another ROBIN in the HERCULES mold of mixing darkness and light humor with modern phrases and lingo as well as historical inaccurate-ness---but all of this is more fun than THE REVENGE OF RH. Even HERCULES and XENA have presented a prince of thieves which is more fun than THE TIME TUNNEL version. As an aside, there was also a space age Robin Hood animated series called ROCKET ROBIN HOOD. Enough of this.

 

Doug and Tony, in the forest, hear birds. A large green bird comes out ready to catch them--or at least a large man dressed in green who claims he is a large bird. The bird sounds were signals to the hiding men. He comes out and says, "A large green bird ready to catch a couple of worms."  More men surround the pair. The man says, "No English men would be buried in such clothes,"  commenting on Tony and Doug's apparel. Hey, those clothes lasted through 30 adventures and a few spinoffs! The tunnel must have some property that keeps them brand new--it used to pop the clothes back on them at the end of an adventure where they had to change clothes but not any more. Maybe the tunnel agrees with this large man. Tony grabs a large pole from this man's hands. He gets another from a pal and they fight. Win and go free. Lose and the man says he will skin both of them alive. He calls Tony a greenhorn. He and Tony fight, pushing each other via the poles. Tony is knocked down eventually after putting up a good fight. The man extends his hand to help him up--he's not such a bad chap, ay? He tells Tony he did well and introduces himself as Little John and the fat man dressed as a monk or something as Friar Tuck. Doug smiles--he thought Robin Hood was just a legend (judging from the Earl he never should have been a legend--he stinks as Robin Hood!). Little John calls Robin a living legend. He went in peace to the king. They only have some men left in the forest now. Doug and Tony are with them to try for a rescue. Tuck tells them not in those clothes, "We'll get some proper green for you both."  At a camp they set up, they plot, Tony and Doug dressed in ridiculous clothes and hats. Friar Tuck and Little John disagree on how to help Robin. Soldiers attack. Tuck tells them to scatter and hide. A crossbow is fired in Little John's shoulder but close, it appears, to his heart. Tuck, Doug, and Tony help him away but soldiers appear to cut them off in the forest.

 

ACT TWO

There is another fight (yawn). Tuck uses his belly to knock a few down. Doug uses his famous pull the man behind me's leg so that he will trip under me (a silly fight move which cannot work the way they show it here). They use the sticks to beat the soldiers away. Doug tells Tuck not to pull the arrow out yet. Tuck suggests they go to Kirkly Hall where a Baroness Elmont used to give them refuge in their outlaw days (perhaps that was the depiction of an earlier Robin in ROBIN OF SHERWOOD and this TIME TUNNEL adventure is Robin in his middle age--oh, who cares?). King John and his aide Dubois confer and talk (yawn). The roads are guarded. If the Robin band escape, Engelard is told it will mean his head. DO IT, PLEASE! If Huntington's men live it will ruin their plan to crush the barons. The aide tells John a purse of gold and bribery is the best weapon they have. King John tells him to use it. Engelard bleeds the Earl, who tells him he will be among the first to be tried under the Magna Carta and that each man is responsible for his own actions. Tony and Doug are outside and the homing post appears in the dungeon, not near them. The tunnel watches the Earl. They try to locate Tony and Doug. Then they wonder if they can transfer the homing post to them. Soldiers ride all over the place. The Baroness lets Tony, Doug, Tuck, and Little John in. She wants to send a messenger to get help for Little John but they tell her no one else must know they are here. She tries several times (dah, givin away her true allegiances). Doug tells Tuck to sterilize a knife...and has to explain that means heat it. Tuck uses the fireplace. Doug asks for herbs that can stop the fever and the Baroness has a whole cabinet full. She suggests leeches but he thinks that won't work--it won't--he's lost enough blood. Doug finds chemicals of many kinds including sulfur and phosphorus, root powder from snake root and resurphin (?) which is a tranquilizer. Some of these so called remedies, Doug tells Tony can be used as explosives. Doug makes Little John drink an "evil brew" and he tells Doug it is horrid. It is for his own good. Doug pulls the arrow out (in the promo synopsis it is Tony who pulls the arrow out). The Baroness asks what kind of trouble they are in. Tony tells her about the Magna Carter, "He's going to have to sign it."  It has rules that are fair to everyone. Doug calls what he is doing battlefield first aide (where did he learn it? From time travel experience or from before the first episode?). Baroness Elmont asks them to consider her opinion and again asks to send a messenger to Runymede when the others mention that is where the Council of Barons are in front of her. The time tunnel staff watch. Ann locks coordinates and images to the post, which begins to glow but doesn't move. Then their image vanishes. The fix on Tony and Doug lost. Men ride (arggghhhguh!). The Baroness goes to King John and his aide (now there's a surprise!) with two men in robes--Tony and Friar Tuck dressed as monks!

 

ACT THREE

The monks leave the throne room. The Baroness tells King John about  Little John and the other outlaw at her place and about Runymede. King John sends her gold to be his informant. After the King leaves, the Baroness tells the aide about Tony and Tuck, claiming to have forgotten about their deception. Tuck fakes that he and Tony are to give Robin Hood his last rites and as Engelard taunts Robin--the Earl--they go in and lock the door. Tuck gets Robin off the hanging chains while Tony puts a knife to Engelard's throat. They make a guard come in by making him say, "Guard, I need your help."  The Earl gets a sword. Engelard tells them, "I was only doing my duty to my king."  The time tunnel staff activate the homing post. Tony sees it now but someone is coming. The three run out as Englard and guards are on the chains. King John and guards try to stop the trio. One guard grabs Tony but Tony and the Earl and Tuck manage to get the door closed. King John grabs the Earl through the bar windows on the cell door but the three move out. King John says, "Let them escape. I'll butcher everyone of them at Runymede."  Tuck throws rope over the parapet with Tony. They climb down. The Baroness watches this. Lots of men on horses ride and ride and we hear the same music every time they do ride (see, I wasn't lying!). The men ride toward Doug and Little John! These must be the soldiers from King John. The horses ride through puddles. Doug and Little John are still at the Baroness's house. Doug warns Little John when he sees the King's men. He makes an explosive smoke, he and Little John using the window to breath clear air while using the smoke in the fireplace to knock out any who might dare enter. It is phospehn oxide. They take a deep breath of air, hold their breath as soldiers come running in and draw their swords!

 

ACT FOUR

The smoke bombs work and the soldiers fall. Little John calls it magic. Once the room clears, Doug claims they will come back and tie the soldiers up. The aide Dubios blames the Baroness (how and why did he?) and King John orders her put in the dungeon. "No, no, no!"  She screams and this is something MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER would also have a field day with. King John orders his garrison to attack Runymede but first to go to Kirkly Hall. The Earl mentions Little John, calling Doug, "Douglas."  There is no time to assemble more men. NOTE: Only Tuck and Little John are mentioned among Robin's men. There is no Will Scarlett, Much, or the rest. There are, however, nameless men who pop up from time to time (like now) and who help them. They use arrows and bows that were hidden (covered with grass and hay) to kill riding men (soldiers) and put us out of our misery to watch any more of their riding! Tony shoots some dead. They find the King's courier among the dead---King John found out where the council was meeting and about Kirkly Hall--the Baroness was a traitor. More men ride and this time it seems to be Robin and his men. At this point, the viewers are not Merry. Robin and his men, and Tony ride to Kirkly Hall to warn Doug and Little John. They find the soldiers tied up in the courtyard. While Little John calls Doug a great magician, Doug tells them it was only homemade nerve gas. When the Earl tells his plans, Doug says, "That's a tall order, storming a castle and deposing a king."  He tells Tony they may want to sit this one out, even though the Earl did save their lives--they also have now saved his and Little John. Tony informs Doug of the homing post--with it they can travel right home! They must join the attack on the castle. Doug wonders if they should not scale the walls--they'll be seen. He suggests a smoke attack. Tony tells them, "It's an old Navy trick."  They all take jars of the chemicals. Men ride; gallant music plays. Robin Hood and men hide in the forest and ambush the soldiers with a big battle following. This battle is somewhat better. At the castle, Dubois reports three couriers have reached three garrisons but not enough guards are left to defend the castle. King John tells him, "We're not defending...we're attacking!"  He wants to crush the barons and make the power of the king absolute. In the forest, the Earl and his men go to the side of the castle and attack. Arrows kill the sentries on the wall. Some fire back but get killed later on. The Earl shoots a smoke arrow into the throne room. Engelard saw it and got down. One guard is arrowed off the parapet and falls to his death. The Earl throws the hook and rope up (shades of LAND OF THE GIANTS--oh, sorry) and climbs up. He fights King John, Doug joins them and fights a guard or Dubois, Tony fights Engelard who knocks Tony's sword out of his hand. Tuck hits Engelard (hey, how did Tuck climb up?) and hits the aide away from Doug. King John gets the goods on Robin and knocks him back and runs off. Tony karates Engelard away. Tuck and the Earl run after King John. Doug says, "Now's our chance to get to the homing post."  They go to the dungeon and pick up the post. "We should be traveling within a few seconds."  Nothing. King John comes in and attacks them both with his upraised sword.

 

TAG

John attacks them with his sword. They use the homing post to block it and he hits it, shattering a part of it into the room. The others come in and overpower King John, who insists he is still their king and must be released. The Earl of Huntington tells him he will be released after he signs the Magna Carter at Runymede. At Runymede in the daytime, King John signs it, "I King John do hereby impress my seal on this Magna Carta (said with disgust) but remember it is the king which gives you these rights."  There are some extras standing around. He stamps the charter and we hear KING OF THE KHYBER PASS music. Tony and Doug, still wearing the Robin Hood band clothes, turn back for a second and then vanish into thin air.

 

CLIFFHANGER: Doug Phillips and Tony Newman fly through time and as they land, as always we see the time crystal-like particles fading, almost as if Tony and Doug came through some kind of hole or opening in the vortex. We see some of the lights as always as they land. There is a large island they head at and land in a dense jungle. Tony thinks his ankle may be broken, Doug hopes it is just a pulled tendon. We hear the jungle sounds used in DOCTOR DOLITTLE and later in the first few LAND OF THE GIANTS episodes. Doug helps Tony up but they hear hammering and some cries. Doug moves ahead to see a beach below the land they are on. Japanese forces withdrawing. Tony figures maybe they are in the South Pacific, WWII. Bombs go off and they get down. They are in line with the target of whoever is shooting. Tony tells Doug to go on without him but Doug's answer is, "Nothing doing!"  They move out but more bombs hit. Tony implores Doug to go on alone but he says, "Are you kidding?"  They go to a safer area and see a hut of some kind. Doug tells Tony to stay down, he will check it out. Tony tells him, "Watch it. It may be booby trapped."  Doug hides at the side of the hut and looks into a window. Hearing a rustling sound, he turns. A Japanese soldier is coming from behind small bushes and aims a rifle at him and fires! (The cliffhanger ended here.)

 

NOTES: Yuck, ROBIN HOOD (as originally titled) a boring episode. It happens. There are many tales of Robin Hood which span such a range that it is impossible to reconcile them to a seamless, perfect whole. There are many variations on Robin, Maid Marion, Tuck, Little John, King (or Prince) John, the Sheriff of Nottingham, and the whole Merry band. ROBIN OF SHERWOOD gave us two Robins. After the first--the commoner's son died, a second came to be--this was the Earl of Huntington. Both were in line with the stories, the commoner (of Locksley) being the early version stories and the nobleman just after. The year this all started was supposed to be 1190 but even that varies.

 

There is much in common with the King Arthur myth but many differences, too. THE ONCE AND FUTURE KING by TH White mentions the Merry Men briefly. Scotland shares some of the legends with England and Gaelic Ireland, thus Arthur and Robin's myths are told there. Maid Marion was not added to the legend until much later (1601).

 

While in the early King Arthur tales, Arthur was supposedly a pagan, Robin in the early tales was not a pagan as in the TV show ROBIN OF SHERWOOD, nor was he a champion of the English peasantry against a Norman aristocracy. He was a Christian even though he fought those who used their positions to oppress honest men. At the beginning he was not anti authority, must anti corruption. In the early ballad about his death, The Prioress of Kirkless (the Baroness of the REVENGE OF ROBIN HOOD--?) left Robin to bleed to death after he fell sick. Her motive was not explained. He had just enough strength to summon his men on his horn. Little John wanted to burn down the nunnery but Robin wouldn't hear of killing women. He shot an arrow and asked to be buried where it fell.

 

The site of his grave has long been shown at Kirkless Hall. Whether Robin Hood was a historical person or an idealization of the outlaw figure is a disputed question but legends often grow up about real people than about types (see MERLIN THE MAGICIAN for a study in the Arthur legend and the real person he may be based on). Modern writers tend to date him somewhere in the period from about 1265 to 1325, but in the 16th century he was generally believed to have lived from about 1160 to 1247, which put him in his prime in the reigns of King Richard the I and King John. He was said to come from a place called Locksley in Yorkshire or Nottinghamshire and to have been outlawed for debt. He was also said to be of noble birth and the rightful Earl of Huntingdon but in the earlier stories he is not an aristocrat but a yeoman, somewhat lower down the social ladder. The earliest reference to the outlaw dates to 1377 where he is mentioned in passing. Friar of Fountains Abbey, Tuck was not named at first but fought Robin in the River Skrell. A King Edward was mentioned in one of the early tales but we are not told which one.

 

Historians have found a half a dozen or so men named Robert Hood. One lived back in the 1200s, and even seemed to steal from the rich to give to the poor "for the benefit of many."  In the original the mythic Robin of the ballads didn't live in Sherwood Forest but in Barnesdale Forest. The real Robin was not a very nice nor merry man--he cut off people's arms when stealing or just because he didn't like them. He also did cruel things to the clergy.

 

Sean Connery played an aging Robin Hood in ROBIN AND MARION and in PRINCE OF THIEVES, played Marion's father. His son was the second Robin Hood in ROBIN OF SHERWOOD, a fantastic series. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE TIME TUNNEL

KILL TWO BY TWO

Writer-Wanda and Bob Duncan

Dir-Herschel Daughtery

 

Dr.s Newman and Phillips are propelled through time as we hear the narration. We see some of the lights as always as they land. There is a large island they head at and land in a dense jungle. Tony thinks his ankle may be broken, Doug hopes it is just a pulled tendon. We hear the jungle sounds used in DOCTOR DOLITTLE and later in the first few LAND OF THE GIANTS episodes. Doug helps Tony up but they hear hammering and some cries. Doug moves ahead to see a beach below the land they are on. Japanese forces withdrawing. Tony figures maybe they are in the South Pacific, WWII. Bombs go off and they get down. They are in line with the target of whoever is shooting. Tony tells Doug to go on without him but Doug's answer is, "Nothing doing!"  They move out but more bombs hit. Tony implores Doug to go on alone but he says, "Are you kidding?"  They go to a safer area and see a hut of some kind. Doug tells Tony to stay down, he will check it out. Tony tells him, "Watch it. It may be booby trapped."  Doug hides at the side of the hut and looks into a window. Hearing a rustling sound, he turns. A Japanese soldier is coming from behind small bushes and aims a rifle at him and fires! (The cliffhanger ended here.) The Japanese man fires again, seeing the bullet hit the wall just behind Doug's head. The gun jams so Doug knocks him down and gets the gun, ready to hit him with the butt of it. Doug sees it is an older man and tells him he isn't going to kill him. He speaks some English and tells them he is alone and will help Tony. He tells them he once helped a sick soldier. They go into the hut. The old man tells Tony his ankle is merely sprained, not broken. "You wish I tape?"  Doug stops him before he can take something out but it is only bandages. The soldiers are leaving since the arrival of the big ship in the harbor. Doug wonders why the Japanese didn't come back. The main compound left when the ship came close. The old man is a spotter to report when ships are moving. He seems nicer. Tony can operate a Japanese radio. As their backs are turned, another, younger Japanese man comes in, sneaking through the door quietly. "Don't move, Joe, or you have a hole through you."  He used a wooden stick in Doug's back to make him think it was a gun. He belittles them and Americans in general--telling them Americans use too much imagination. "We're going to have some interesting times together before I kill you."

 

ACT ONE  

The young Japanese smokes a cigarette, making the Sergeant light it up for him. He is prejudice in the extreme, hating all Americans and mocking them to Tony and Doug. He starts by calling them Joe--all Americans are Joe to him he tells Tony later. He also says all Americans carry cigarettes for adults and chocolate bars for the children. There is a freeze frame and we see the titles. Ann says, "We can't leave them there with that sadist."  They are 700 miles Southeast of Tokyo, on one of 20 islands--but which one? It is early Jan to March in 1945. They view the American fleet. Kirk notices the Missouri and the Illinois and sends Ann to the computer for a list of when the two ships were together in the Pacific. The young man mocks the Sergeant to Tony and Doug since the old man has to have some touch of beauty--a single flower--but to me it looks like a whole vase full of flowers. Doug tells the young man, "We're non-combatants here, Lt. We're scientists."  The Lt. laughs and tells them to tell him they are missionaries--he might have believed that. Tony is tired of the taunting, "Look, if you're going to shoot us go ahead and do it."  He shoots near Tony and tells him he has good reflexes and nerves, calling him Joe again. Tony tells him, "My name's not Joe."  He laughs that all Americans look alike to him and he calls them all Joe. He makes Tony stand up and then Doug help Tony outside. The Sergeant is ordered to shoot them if they try to run away. Doug refuses Tony's plan to jump the younger man. Tony says, "He's a psychopath."  Doug admits he is full of bitterness. The Lt. says he knows Kendo, was once on the Kendo team at Stanford in the United States but not for long. He broke a man's arm. Doug knows kendo is a Japanese sport. The Lt. wants to fight Tony. Doug is mad and wants him to try him. The Lt mocks the Sergeant, telling them he is not much. Tony asks the rules of his little tournament--to which the madman answers, "No rules, you try to break my head in and I try to break yours."  Tony flips him and they fight long and hard--it is a well choreographed fight sequence and is not dull as some of the other fight scenes in other episodes can be (REVENGE OF ROBIN HOOD for one). The Lt wins but Doug talks him out of using the pointed staff to kill Tony. Lt tells them he was educated in their country and wants Doug to beg eventually. The Lt tells them they and he might think he is soft for being educated in the US. Tony tells him to try him without the sticks but the Lt likes the advantage--it makes him feel good and secure enough. He wants to make them mad enough to kill him.

 

"We're all alone on this island, the four of us, the odds about even, he has a bad foot, I have an old man. It's about war...you against us."       

 

Doug says, "We don't play with death."  He insists they must this time and they must play his game his way. This reeks of THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME, which is a movie taken from a short story about a man hunting a new animal--human beings. The first film in 1933 is a classic. It was remade several times, one remake was called RUN FOR THE SUN. In addition, several TV series have used this premise--GILLIGAN'S ISLAND, GET SMART, LOST IN SPACE-HUNTER'S MOON, CHARLIE'S ANGELS, HART TO HART (more than once--including the new two hour movie version), THE INCREDIBLE HULK, and many others. The premise of the fight to the death is very similar to it--the story which many TV shows and movies based their versions of this are the same as the hunt premise: STAR TREK-THE ARENA, THE OUTER LIMITS-FUN AND GAMES, SPACE: 1999-THE RULES OF LUTON, and others. Among the best of all of these is KILL TWO BY TWO. It adds more dimension to it by changing the motivations of the stalker...and characterization was very strong in this episode, more so than in all the above mentioned versions.

 

The Lt tells them they are on the smallest island of the 20 islands. Tony tells them that if the Americans want it, they will take it, just as they will with Iwo Jima. The Lt tells them to make the game more interesting they should want his radio as the prize if they win: a massive aerial attack will meet the American forces when they land. He will give them one hour and then come after them. If they win: they get the radio. They will not be given any weapons but the jungle is full of makeshift weapons to kill a man. The Lt calls this payback and tells them, "And you're right...I'm going to kill you both this time."

 

ACT TWO

Doug wants to circle around and go back to the radio shack for some weapons or for the radio to warn the American fleet. We hear music that is used in LOST IN SPACE-KIDNAPPED IN SPACE later. Tony tells Doug, "Whatever happened on this island is already a part of history. We can't change it."

 

Doug snaps, "We don't know what happened on this island and even if we did..it wouldn't make any difference."   Tony notices, "He really got to you, didn't he?"  Doug doesn't like running, even if on his own terms, which this isn't. He tells Tony he doesn't care if he sits this one out---he should. Tony looks at him, "What happens to one of us, happens to both of us."

 

Ray, watching, comments to Kirk, "Senseless is what it is. They should stay holed up somewhere...stay put until we can get a fix." 

Kirk smiles, "They've gotten involved, that's what's happened--they're two young men who can't back away."

 

Ray adds, "Well, we've got to help them. Neither of them has had experience in jungle fighting."

 

Ann returns with a map. From it she ascertains they are on either Kita Iwo or the southern most island Manmi Iwo and it is Feb 19, 1945. Records of the campaigns of the Japanese were destroyed but there might be some survivors of the campaigns who can help them. As he has Ann call the Pentagon for such a survivor, Kirk assumes they are on Manmi Iwo--he has to gamble. Tony and Doug watch the hut. Doug warns Tony not to engage in any false heroics, no matter what happens. He hides behind boxes as the Lt comes past. Doug gets inside the hut (we hear VOYAGE music from the first season), using a knife to open the supply house door. He looks around and opening a crate, finds rifles. He has to hide at the sacks as the two Japanese men come in. Lt asks the Sergeant if he speaks English and the Sergeant says he can speak a little if it is necessary--if his commanding officer wishes him to. The Lt tells the old man that way of thinking is of the old school and that the Sergeant obeys all authority without question. Lt, drinking, asks the Sergeant if he knows who he is and the Sergeant admits he does. Lt asks him why he won't kill him. Sergeant tells him it is not his place to do this...he must do it himself. A horrid, large spider is crawling up Doug's leg and up to his upper torso. Only when they leave can he knock it off himself. He gets grenades and a machete but accidentally kicks over boxes, bringing the two back. Doug runs out and to Tony undercover. The Lt thanks them--they could use a grenade but they can't risk destroying the radio. Tony stops Doug from throwing a grenade--it is what the younger man wants him to do. Tony says, "We'll fight him when he's not expecting it."  They move off but the younger man starts shooting indiscriminately.

 

Watching on the tunnel screen, Ann notices, "He wants them to kill him."  Ray agrees. The Navy Dept told them the Missouri and the Illinois were at Manmi Iwo and shelled it on Feb. 14, 1945. The Japanese consulate is flying a man in by military jet. Ray hopes he can pinpoint markings on the island.

 

Tony sees two trees which he wants to string something between to make a trap. Doug finds a vine and tells Tony the old man has been here a long time and probably knows the jungle well. They set the vine one inch off the ground and will put a grenade on it.

 

Dr. Nakamura comes to the complex and tells them he cannot help. While the time tunnel, he says, is interesting, he cannot help them. He wanted to tell them this in person---he lead the Imperial forces and it was a bitter time for him. Kirk explains the lives of two men are at stake. Dr. Nakamura tells him it is not a government matter for him...it is a personal matter and a painful one but if lives are at stake, he will help them. He meets Dr. MacGregor and Dr. Swain. They tell him he is looking at the afternoon of Feb. 17, 1945. His commanding forces withdrew on the 17th. When they see the Sergeant at the hut, Nakamura claims to have known him well--he is Sergeant Itsugi. They ask him to try to identify the other officer and the Lt comes out of the hut. The Doctor, a diplomat now, says, "Impossible, he was dead. He was dead. He is alive, he is not dead." 

 

Kirk looks at him, "You know this man?" 

 

"Yes, he's my son!"  Nakamura passes out and almost passes over but Ray and General Kirk grab him and hold him.

 

ACT THREE

A black doctor of Project Tic Toc, nameless, is checking on Nakamura who is sitting in a chair and bringing him around. He was in shock. Ann gets Doug and Tony's signal (she almost always mentions Doug's name first when talking about the boys). Tony sets up a grenade to the vine trap. Doug holds the pin, Tony tells him to get back but he doesn't seem to listen. They fix it and then Tony tells Doug they need to advertise to get him out to the trap. They hide at a log as the Sergeant comes. Doug throws a grenade away from him. The Lt comes and finds the trap, telling Itsugi they have class, style. He calls out to the two, "Clever, Joe, clever."  He takes the grenade off and throws it, then fires at the log with his rifle. There is a closeup on the next bomb Doug tosses. They only have two more and the Lt knows this. Lt figures Itsugi does not like to kill to which the old man answers, "If necessary, I kill."  The old man doesn't like it though. The Lt tells him to go back to the hut. He wants to stay but the Lt, angry, says something in Japanese to him and he goes.

 

Kirk questions Dr. Nakamura about Lt. Nakamura, his son. The younger was Kamakaze pilot and lead an attack on the Cheyenne but at the last moment he couldn't do it and crashed in the ocean. His father's men pulled him ashore. He dishonored us, the father tells Kirk and he couldn't help his own son. He left him behind on the island. Kirk moves up and looks discomforted, "To commit hari kari?"  Seppuku would be the proper term. The father explains the son spent too much time in the US and forgot the teachings of his childhood.

 

Tony and Doug see the ocean and part of the island--a mountainous part. They hide behind rocky sandy area. Tony doesn't think the Lt was telling the truth about the planes attacking. But he and Doug now see two planes which Doug thinks are Japanese. Tony tells him he is very sure they are. The Lt was telling the truth. Doug thinks their best chance is to be picked up by the fleet. He will divert the Lt and tells Tony to get to the radio. "You're better with radios than I am,"  he tells Tony. They continue to discuss what to do. Tony takes a grenade and goes. Doug runs among the rocks as the Lt shoots at him and follows him up the rock face. The Lt is near the water---and tells "Joe"  he has picked a bad spot to hide. Doug runs into a cave (one I am sure I have seen before in LOST IN SPACE, other episodes of THE TIME TUNNEL, and VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA). Lt continues to shoot at the cave face as Doug comes out. The Lt asks about where Tony is. Doug throws a grenade in return and hurts the Lt's leg. The Japanese man wraps it up. "Bad shot, Joe, your friend's not going to make it. You're all washed up, Joe."  Doug looks out and watches him.

 

ACT FOUR

Tony looks up and sees planes. Doug bluffs the Lt--telling him he can't move out, asking him if he is a deserter. Doug asks, "What will killing each other prove...we both want to live to go home."  The Lt yells he can't go home--"I don't have any home any more!"  He shoots at the cave, "Kill me!"  When Doug is nearly hit and falls back into the cave, the Lt thinks it is a trick at first but then thinks Doug is dead inside--but stupidly he doesn't check. Doug is out of grenades. Lt says, "You're not to supposed to die without killing me first."  Dr. Nakamura watches and admits he was wrong, he should have never left his son, "I should never have abandoned him. I accepted the fact that he was dead. But you have brought him back to me. I will not watch him die a second time."  He asks if they can save all 3 men but they cannot. They can only save two and he demands his son be one of the men they bring back. Otherwise, he won't identify the map markings for them on the screen or the map. Ann asks, "Can we get someone else to help us?"  Kirk admits to her there isn't time. Ray wonders if he is bluffing. Ann says, "A man doesn't bluff when the life of his son is at stake."  Kirk tells them to make their primary fix on the Lt and to take either Tony or Doug...whichever one of them is closest to the Lt. Kirk asks the doctor to reconsider. Bringing back his son will create insurmountable psychological problems for the son...there will be a 23 year gap in his life, a void. Dr. Nakamura says, "The only insurmountable thing in this world is death."   He will not reconsider but will look at their map now.

 

The Lt leaves Doug's area to go after Tony. Doug comes out. Tony is in the jungle but runs to the hut. He hides and we hear more LOST IN SPACE-A VISIT TO HADES & VOYAGE-TERRIBLE TOYS music. Tony gets into the hut but Itsugi jumps in and shoots the radio apart. Tony drops down and throws a chair at the Sergeant, then fights him down. The tunnel image screen shows planes leaving the destroyers of American ships. They see the American landing force. The staff switch to the radio shack to view the Lt. Tony takes Itsugi outside with a rifle. The Lt shoots at him, Tony knocks Itsugi down and runs; Doug moves in. Tony tosses a grenade, lobbing it at the feet of the Lt. The Lt looks down at it.

 

TAG

The grenade is a dud so the Lt, angry, kicks it away, then laughs insanely. We hear VOYAGE second season music. Amid the laughing Lt, Doug is called to by Tony. Tony tells him, "He's lost his mind."  Doug takes the rifle and calls out to the Lt. The Sergeant wakes up. Doug says, "Lt, surrender and I'll see to it you're treated properly n the hands of the Americans."  Itsugi tells young Nakamura he must decide now--die properly or live in shame. The Lt thinks it over. One thing--can Doug really fulfill his promise? He must realize the tunnel can pull him from this time at any moment so why make the promise? He really cannot keep his word on this--how would he know the Americans would treat the Lt fairly and how would he insure this?

 

Ann says the signals on Tony and Doug are the same: both are strong, neither more than the other. She wants to take all three but Ray tells her that would kill all three for sure. As they watch young Nakamura prepare himself, his father says, "He has finally realized who he is. I won't take that from him. Leave him there."  They reset the focus. The son is putting on full kimono and head band inside the hut. Lt comes out with a rifle and points it at Doug and Tony, "You have to do it. I'm not giving any choices." 

 

Doug points from the bushes but claims, "I can't do it."  The Lt points at them but is shot from the other side by Americans. Two come running and then a third joins them. Two cover the Sergeant. Tony yells, "Don't shoot, we're Americans!"  as he and Doug show themselves. Doug asks the dying young Nakamura why he didn't just give up when he had the chance. The Lt says, "I'm Japanese, Joe, I forgot that, but only for awhile."  The American Sergeant tells them he made a perfect target wearing all white, then asks who Tony and Doug are. Tony tells him it is a long story. He asks who the dead man is. Doug says, "He was a man fighting his own private war and I think he's found his victory."  Tony and Doug vanish and we hear the familiar pop sound-musical vanishing.

 

CLIFFHANGER: Tony and Doug fly through time. They come down onto a hard floor of an alien room. They stand up and do not say anything. Suddenly, two aliens appear (silver suited and...you get the idea) from thin air. Doug and Tony turn and see them--a different edit of the next week's teaser. The aliens talk backward. Tony and Doug go to them and ask, "Who are you? What is this place?"   The aliens move them over to a translation circuit board--which has a silly looking robotic shape etched into it against the wall. The aliens find out Tony and Doug are intruders from another dimension. Tony tells them they are from Earth. The aliens tell him they are under orders of leader Lentos and will raid planet 1-6, the first advance against the planet. When the boys ask to see what the planet is they will attack and steal all materials from, the aliens show them Earth on a device near the far wall (and it looks more like a globe or globe map with no clouds and only lines like a map--very unreal when we find out what the Earth really looks like from space). The music is a bit different from the version of this segment which we will see in Act One of the next episode, not the teaser of the episode. Doug moves at the aliens, despite Tony's warnings they cannot do anything against them. They shoot a strange gun-like device at him and he falls. Tony checks him. The alien walks toward them and, in what builds to be an extreme close up, coldly says, "When we leave the Earth...we will leave no life on it...it will be a dead planet."  END OF CLIFFHANGER and an eerie one it is at that...very atmospheric even if the rest of the next episode didn't live up to that. The teaser for the next episode was not covered in  the cliffhanger!?!               

 

NOTES: Regardless of what you think about this episode's theme of Japanese having to honor themselves by killing themselves, this episode stands out among the later half of the series. It has some riveting performances from all involved (Mako is terrific), a controversial subject matter, less fights than other episodes, and characterization, even from Tony and Doug. Iwo Jima was 750 miles from Japan and an air base there was acquired after terrible losses on both sides. This happened in 1945. Rather than go into the terrible aspects of that battle, I can mention the Volcanic Islands (Kazan-Retto) do exist: there is a Kita Iwo island and a Minami island with Iwo between the two. I must note that my research lead me to a book called PRISONERS OF THE JAPANESE: POWs OF WORLD WAR II IN THE PACIFIC by Gavin Daws. The forced march Death March in Bataan and the use of POW slave labor in the construction of the Burma Siam railroads; the random killing of prisoners, both American and Filipino prisoners; killing of the wounded, old, young, and female; and cruelty unmatched by the Nazis in Germany (only 4 percent of their American POWs died---but 27 percent of the Japanese military's American POWs died) and the Ancient Romans in the far past, make me rethink just how awful the Japanese people really were in this time. Yes, America did stop trading with Japan before the bombing of Pearl Harbor; yes, FDR probably did know about the bombing of Pearl Harbor almost to the hour; yes, the Nazis were butchering monsters; yes, they and the Japanese had their reasons for what they were doing but the book itself reveals such inhumane treatment, mutilation, torture, downright sadism, that is hard to forget what these people did to other people under the guise of war. Like their butchering German allies, the butchering Japanese also did experiments on people. While the Nazi Germans were unequaled in what they did to children in their torturous and demented experiments...the Japanese did experiments on POWs, cutting them to bits, pouring salt water into veins and removing the blood, timing forced heart convulsions, etc. I once firmly thought that propaganda and slanted history twisted many minds of us in the US and the free world but having seen this book, I must truly say the Japanese are unparalleled in their horrid treatment of prisoners and people in general and they probably would have fought very hard before any surrender, had not the awful Atomic Bomb been used...twice! The Atomic Bomb was a disaster for humankind but it ended a brutal and bloody war. The Japanese culture changed radically...thank God!  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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