Logan's Run - TV Series
After watching the movie again, recently (a classic that I love) I came across the fact that there was also a TV Series of this movie. The TV series was produced in 1977/78 a year after the movie and lasted 1 season, with 14 episodes. I managed with some luck to get a hold of these episodes and I am so glad I did, it is an experience I would have missed out on, if I had not accidentally come across the information that they existed.
The series is a typical late 70's series with the same atmosphere as Lost in Space and Land of the Giants. Typically with all late 70's episodes, they all have the first 30 seconds giving you a sneak peak at the content of the episode. The episodes last 50 minutes, however the first episode is double length.
The series very quickly recaps over the main movie, with the new actors taking the place of Logan 5 and Jessica 6. It spends about 15 minutes showing us, what the City of Domes is all about, the Carousel, the fact that Logan is a Sandman, and the he suddenly changes his mind about dying at the age of 30 to become a runner, a person that he used to hunt down and terminate. It shows them escaping into the outside world to set up the episode and future episodes, where they will explore this post-apocalyptic Earth, and this is where the series splits from the movie.
During the series Logan 5 and Jessica 6 are on the run trying to find, Sanctuary, a place where the Runners head to, a place where they will be able to live to an old age, (as in the City of Domes, at 30 you face Carousel, a renewing of your life.... or rather death) and live safely in happiness. Francis, Logan 5's former Sandman partner, is charged with chasing after him to bring him back to the City of Domes, to testify that there is no Sanctuary.
Naturally as with most series based on movies, they are continuously on the hunt for Sanctuary, coming across many individual societies that survived the apocalypse, each with their own unique way of doing things, each reflecting group/societies we have today, and what they would be like closed off able to live solely without outside influence. Along the way, well in the first episode the come across an Android called Rem, whom travels with them throughout the future episodes. Ts a good job really as how on earth could 2 people from 1 city be able to interact with the technology of other cultures, when things no doubt go wrong.
1. Logans Run
In this pilot episode, Logan 5 and Jessica 6 escape the City of Domes, Francis is set after them. Logan and Jessica run into 2 groups of people in this episode, the first they come across are hiding from a bullying group of horse riding individuals. Unfortunately Jessica is kidnapped by one of the riders so Logan must rescue her, while Francis is close to capturing them. After they have made a big change, as we would all expect, to the group cowering away, they move on and find city of robots, where all their needs are taken care of, but its not called Sanctuary so they can't possibly stay. During their escape they run into Rem, who joins them on their quest to find Sanctuary.
2. The Collectors
In this episode Logan and Jess think they have found Sanctuary and all the other runners, wow that was quick. Unfortunately it turns out to be aliens who can read minds and create the desired illusions. These aliens are 'Collectors' they travel the universe collecting 2 of the dominant species of any planet they come across, for research purposes (a bit like a laboratory version of Noah's Ark). Rem sparks their interest as he is clearly superior to the humans yet made by humans. Rem also is under no illusion about what's going on being able to see the truth. Will the 3 escape the clutches of these aliens... or will they be whisked off to another planet... where the future 12 episodes take place???
Well as you may have guessed we are still on Earth. Logan, Jess and Rem are still on the hunt for Sanctuary and Francis is hot on their tail with a squad from the City of Domes. Francis is so close that he actually manages to capture the 3 of them. On their trip home they have to stop overnight when during their sleep Jess disappears... clearly kidnapped. On the hunt for what happened they come across a game hunter, James Borden, who takes them back to his place, telling of mutants whom most likely have her. The next morning they set out to rescue her, but suddenly James disappears and Francis and Logan suddenly have the feeling they are the game.
4. The Innocent
Logan, Jess and Rem being closely chased by Francis still, come across a building in the middle of nowhere, with a very powerful shield. They manage to get inside keeping Francis and his squad out. In this building the discover Lisa a girl living with robots for company. Lisa however is very special, she has high mental abilities being able to power the shield, transport objects, etc. Unfortunately Logan, Jess and Rem discover this too late as Lisa develops a crush on Logan, thinking he will have no need to leave if Jess and Rem are already gone.
5. Man Out of Time
David Eakins is a scientist from before the apocalypse and has a plan to save the world. He invents a time travel device that can travel into the future (hmmm I'm currently travelling into the future now... so it can't be that hard). This device is to take him 200 years into the future, after the apocalypse so that he can access his computer. His computer having been set in his time to record all of the events that happened to the lead up to the apocalypse. This way when he takes that data back to his time, he can stop those events from ever happening, saving the world from apocalypse and of cause ending the existence of City of Domes and all other colonies. What will he find caused the apocalypse, will Logan, Jess allow him to complete his mission once they learn of it... especially as it would mean their lives being over if the past was to change?
6. Half Life
Logan, Jess and Rem run into a band of humans whom attack them, luckily they are rescued just before receiving a rocket to the face. However the society that rescue them look identical to those who attacked them. Eventually they discover the society they are in have gone through 'processing' where the good and evil halves are split into 2 individual beings. The good protected inside and the evil outcast. Can good survive without evil? And will Logan and Jess be expected to go through the process themselves, during their stop-over?
7. The Crypt
Logan, Jess and Rem discover 6 survivors of the war, however these survivors were cryogenically frozen due to them having a virus. These 6 from their society were chosen as being the most valuable for rebuilding their world. The idea of freezing them being that when a cure was found they could be defrosted and brought back to life. The cure was found, but it was too late for anyone there to revive them, so help was requested. This is where Logan, Jess and Rem enter, they take the cure down to the frozen 6, unfortunately breaking one of the vials... meaning only 3 can be cured. They revive the 6 and now it is time to work out which 3 will survive. Will Logan and Jess be able to make a decision, or will the decision be made for them as one by one the revived 6 turns into 5 then 4.......
8. Fear Factor
Logan, Jess and Rem come across a mental asylum turned into a society. The leaders of which believe emotion is a bad thing. They have discovered a way to remove emotion from people, turning a number of their population into mindless drones. What will happen to Logan and Jess? Its amazing, not much ever happens to Rem, he's just an android.
9. The Judas Goat
The Sandmen are still trying to capture Logan and Jess, you'd think after this amount of time they'd just give up. But no, this time they have given a Sandman plastic surgery to make him look like a runner friend of Jess. Naturally he is charged with their capture, and luckily bumps into them both quite quickly, just as all of them bump into the original runner, the first person to make it out the City of Domes. Unfortunately this rebel has turned a little shy in his old age, and doesn't like taking risks anymore. So how will it all go when Jess' friend suggests they all go back to the City of Domes because its all changed, the Runners have all rebelled and taken over???
During Logan's, Jess' and Rem's search for Sanctuary they come stop at this building out in the middle of nowhere containing a lone woman. She suggests they rest there for the night before continuing on with their journey, they soon go to sleep on these amazing comfy beds. This is where the fun starts. The building is a dream station, where people go for their dreams to be analyzed. Unfortunately this makes the dreams more vivid and real, keeping the person in their dream for longer. While most people have lived pleasant lives their dreams don't tend to focus on anything dangerous, however Logan and Jess have had very intense lives dealing with death and danger constantly for the past year. They are trapped in their dreams for a set period of time, unfortunately outside the Francis and another sandman turn up... and of cause inside, if you die in your dream you die in reality!!!
Logan, Jess and Rem bump into a society that are weary of strangers bearing weapons. Naturally as Logan has a weapon they immediately zap him... but they zap him with a device that temporarily erases a year of their memory.. they find it stops people potential aggressors, unfortunately a year ago Logan was a Sandman, quite content in his life of hunting and terminating runners. The society captures Rem and Jess as they are unarmed to discuss what they want, unfortunately this leaves Logan with his old memory to bump into Francis. Naturally as Logan is all for Carousel and terminating runners they both go back to the City of Domes where Logan is passing test after test for loyalty and is in line to testify in front of everyone that Carousel is the way forward and there is no sanctuary and there is nothing outside of the City of Domes. Rem and Jess manage to convince the person investigating them, that they mean no harm, and in fact by erasing Logans' memory they will have put him in harm, so they manage to be released without their memories erased, and they go back o the City of Domes to rescue Logan. Will Logan testify there is no Sanctuary at Carousel? Will Jess and Rem get to him in time? How will Rem stand in the City of Domes considering he looks 50?
12. Night Visitors
This episode is a bit strange... most series seem to like to have a bit of fun with the supernatural. It is a dark stormy night, Logan, Jess and Rem think they see a shadow in the heavy rain. Upon further investigation they see a house with a light on, but when they get there it looks dead. They go inside to shelter from the rain and suddenly the owners come downstairs turning the lights on to a nice looking house. The owners seem very welcoming, however at looking around this house has many antiques in it, especially considering 200 years ago there was a nuclear war. The owners are expecting a master of the house, as they have plans for Jess. What are these plans? Are they going to be good? Or bad? Will Jess enjoy it? Will they all make it through to sunrise?
Logan, Jess and Rem are captured by desert dwellers. They are tried and sentenced to death for being outsiders crossing their border without permission and carrying weapons. Francis and another Sandman plead for the release of them to be taken back to the City of Domes where the punishment will be equal, but the leader Asa will not let them go. This is a problem as Francis needs them to be taken back to the City of Domes to testify there is no Sanctuary, so he and the Sandman try to rescue Logan, Jess and Rem.
Logan, Jess and Rem encounter aliens from another planet. Their planet is dying and they crashed on Earth while looking for a suitable new home. Earth is a bit cold for these aliens, however it is able to support their life. The aliens task is to analyse threats and set up a matter transporter to beam over their race. Unfortunately for them they are missing a few pats to keep a stable signal happening. Luckily for them Rem being a sophisticated android contains most of the components they need. Will they be successful in transporting their
alien race to Earth, or will Logan and Jess be able to stop them and save the Earth?
This is a good late 70's series, it reminded me of the times on a Sunday morning when I would watch Land of the Giants and Lost in Space. The stories were good, and they stuck to the general premise of Logan's Run (too many series try and change from the movie to much). I would definitely recommend watching this if you get chance, however I would guess it will be hard to obtain as I have not seen any release of it on DVD or TV again.
Loosely based upon the film of the same name, which was based on the book by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson, also of the same name, this series centres on two people, Logan 5 and Jessica 6, who are running for their lives. Logan was a Sandman, a black and grey ST: TNGesque suited policeman whose duty was to terminate runners. jessica's goal was to aid runners in their escape. Escape from what? Well, from the City of Domes and their fate at Carousel as many, many years ago there was a war and the outside world polluted by it so that it became inhospitable. The domed city was built so that the population within its walls could live out their lives in safe and pleasant environs. Relatively carefree, the denizens of the City of Domes live out their lives until last day. That day is their 30th birthday, when they must report for Renewal at Carousel. Many do not believe that the people are reborn after the fire of Carousel, and try to flee the city to outside, for they believe the world is liveable again and a place known only as Sanctuary awaits them where they can live to grow old. They become known as "runners".
Logan encounters Jessica 6, and becomes convinced she is right, especially when he sees the outside again. So he decides to aid her in her quest to find the other runners and Sanctuary where they too may live out their natural lives. The series follows their adventures along the way, followed by Logan's former best friend and fellow Sandman, Francis and a few other Sandmen under his authority, who wish to bring him back to renounce his "wild ideas" before the public to try and put an end to the runner heresy once and for all. Francis is motivated to do this by a hidden cabal of elderly men who promise if he completes this task, he can join their ranks; they are the behind the unseen and unknown rulers of the City of Domes, and the runner "problem" is upsetting their apple cart. Logan and Jessica are joined along the way by an android named Rem who provides many skills and insights into the world outside as well as companionship.
The main cast has all of 4 main characters. They are:
Gregory Harrison ... Logan 5
Heather Menzies ... Jessica 6
The acting quality is actually quite good, with onscreen romantic tension between jessica and Logan being believable. Moffat's portrayal as Rem is also quite excellent, and actually rather reminiscinet of the much later portrayal of Data on ST:TNG by Brent Spiner, although with less puzzlement and aloofness from humanity. Francis has no real depth in most of the episodes, being a mere co star whose sole purpose is to shout at Logan to stop, to order his men to follow, or to fire one of those nifty ray guns. The actors do extremely well within the limited by budget storylines and made this a pleasant programme to watch.
I have to say in light of some of the genre's offerings for the time period, it is a real shame that this show only lasted 14 episodes. The storylines, with one exception, were all high quality, with the only big misstep being a haunted house story that began excellently but wandered into 70's mediocrity with talk of the devil and ritualistic dealings with said persona occuring. The hairstyles are pure 70's, the clothes typical sci fi polyester satin and spandex fare for 1977-78, and you simply have to love the slightly cheesy special effectsand questionable sets and laughable "futuristic" music. What's not to love about an empty shopping mall being used for a futuristic city? It is an offering from the mid late 70's that has good acting, just the right amount of cheesiness, and interesting storylines, all befitting its iconic cult status.
Currently unavailable on VHS or DVD, it recently saw a well received viewing in its entirety on the Sci Fi channel, which is where I happened to catch this little gem. Hopefully it will run again, or even be released onto DVD so others can sit down for a non taxing bit of entertainment. If so, don't you do a runner! And yes, that IS where the expression came from!
While Logan's Run has dated since its release in 1976, it won an oscar for its special effects that year, before a certain George Lucas project came to our screens in 1977. The year is 2274, and all the humans left on earth live in a huge dome-city where they live for enjoyment. The only catch is that at 30, they have to be 'renewed'. Some, however, try and run in an attempt to live longer, and there are a special unit of people called Sandmen who are out to destroy the 'runnners'. Michael York as Logan 5 is one such person and he is set the task of locating a sanctuary where some runners have supposedly escaped too. Teaming up with a citizen runner Jessica-played by a beautiful Jenny Agutter-he goes in search of the sanctuary and a way out of the dome-city, followed by his former friend and sandman Francis (Richard Jordan). As Logan pretends to run as a cover, he discovers that there is no need to be renewed and he and Jessica search for the sanctuary. As mentioned earlier, the film has dated somewhat, and resembles an episode of old Star Trek at times. The dome-city is impressive but the citizens all wear the sort of clothes expected of a 1970's sci-fi: red or green cloaks and tight-fitting trousers. Yet the story is imaginative and exciting, with the action done well. While half of the film is spent in the dome-city, the second half may seem a little slow but there are more impressive effects, an example being the White House covered in ivy and overgrown. To go with the effects which although dated, are not the worst, and the decent storyline, there are good performances from York, Agutter and later on Ustinov playing a delightful 'Old Man'. The film falls into two halves, with the first half taking place in the city-this provides the good effects and excitement as Logan and Jessica run, while the second half is slower and more talkative, still having some beautiful photography. Added to that there is a
n interesting score by the always solid Jerry Goldsmith. To conclude, a dated but impressive science fiction, that is both imaginative and exicing, with good performances from the main leads.