Pod Stallions: Microcops VS Space Police : Busted TV Pilots round 2

Pod Stallions: Microcops VS Space Police : Busted TV Pilots round 2

Pod Stallions
Pod Stallions
Pod Stallions: Microcops VS Space Police : Busted TV Pilots round 2

Star Trek vs Star Wars. Tolkien vs Herbert. Coke vs Pepsi. And we add one more head-to-head battle into the Thunderdome: Microcops vs Space Police.

Yes, we did the work, so you don’t have to. Two busted TV pilots, both in the law enforcement genre, only one will suck a little less than the other.

Are you on the edge of your seat yet? You won’t be!

View the busted pilots here:


Space Police

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Pod Stallions: Microcops VS Space Police : Busted TV Pilots round 2

Pod Stallions: Microcops VS Space Police : Busted TV Pilots round 2


Topics Discussed: CBS Summer Playhouse, Busted TV Pilots, Inner Space, Micro Cops, Peter Scholari, Bosom Buddies, Brian George, Gerry Anderson, Shane Rimmer, Space Precinct, Space Police, Terrahawks, Pod Stallions: Microcops VS Space Police : Busted TV Pilots round 2


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5 Awesome Things on eBay this week


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AKA Brian Heiler author of "Rack Toys: Cheap, Crazed Playthings" and co-editor of "Toy-Ventures Magazine". Co-Host of the "Pod Stallions" podcast. Host of the Brick Mantooth Youtube channel, painter, designer, writer, mental health advocate, toy collector, Mego, and Mego Knock-Off enthusiast. I have large feet, ADHD and I live in Canada. Talk toys, not others.

1 Comment

  • DBenson on March 8, 2024

    Okay, you triggered me …

    I too remember “Microcops”, but didn’t remember Peter Scolari being in it. Guessing it was going to be a sort of Love Boat / Fantasy Island / Quantum Leap thing, where the little people would interfere with different guest stars each week. There was another faintly similar pilot, about aliens studying earthlings remotely from inside an office building. They were basically office workers, monitoring the culture while happily avoiding any contact. The naive hero gets sent outside to conduct some field work — not an envied assignment — and experiences consequences from human food, love, and sex. I remember it as “What on Earth”, but the closest thing on google is “Why on Earth”. It was mildly comic, the star alien being well-intentioned and too softhearted to stick to the prime directive. Minimal scifi goodies; the setup seemed to be the alien interfering with people and Learning a Valuable Lesson.

    Caught glimpses of “Space Precinct” on KTEH54 in San Jose, a PBS affiliate. They’d had success with cult items like “Monty Python”, “Doctor Who”, “Red Dwarf,” and “The Prisoner”, along with such Britcoms as “Are You Being Served” and “Keeping Up Appearances”, so this must have looked like a good bet. What little I caught looked like a scifi spoof of “Barney Miller”, and I had the same neither fish nor fowl reaction you did.

    A popular variant on the standard pilot was the “movie” — that is, padded out to be long enough to run in a movie time slot and be sold into syndication (and eventually, video), rather than be burnt off as a one-shot summer novelty. “Buck Rogers” was a rejected pilot, but looked flashy enough to release theatrically — where it made money and got picked up as a series. Gene Roddenberry made two unrelated TV movies pitching his own spin on Buck Rogers, the focus being on a future world where forest ranger regulations are the basis for a society and hot mutant babes have two navels.

    A quick check confirms that “The Adventures of Captain Zoom in Outer Space” predated “Galaxy Quest” by a few years. The 1995 pilot / movie was about a vain, horny actor playing a superhero on a cheap Captain Video-type show in the 1950s. He’s zapped to another planet by aliens who’ve picked up transmissions and decide he’s the hero they need. It played like a comedic cousin to “Hercules” and similar shows.

    In the late 70s Irwin Allen produced a pilot plus two stand-alone episodes of “The Return of Captain Nemo”, which aired as a miniseries and was later cut into a movie (available from Warner Archive). Coming after his success with epic disaster movies it was step backwards, past even his own “Lost World”, Perhaps it was intentionally juvenile but came off as hokey even for its time.

    Disney did a miniseries, “Earth*Star Voyager”, clearly designed to lead into a series. Likewise Disney’s take on the “Dinotopia” books. Both were plenty strange, trying to mix vintage Disney formula with fresher influences.

    Shifting to Gerry Anderson:

    Old enough to have seen “Supercar” when it was new, and followed “Fireball XL5” and “Stingray”. “Thunderbirds” I discovered by accident, it reaching my market via a UHF station in the 70s. On revisiting, one of the odd charms of those shows is that the scripts sound like kids writing what they think is grown-up dialogue and plotting. Another was how puppety the characters were — no uncanny valley here, in design or movement.

    Be it noted that Lady Penelope guested on “Absolutely Fabulous”, voice and perhaps puppet provided by Sylvia Anderson. The context was Edina hallucinating while under anesthetic.

    “Captain Scarlet’s” realism worked against it, calling attention to the still puppety movements (and so they tried to minimize action even more than “Thunderbirds”) and their difficulties with attractive female characters. There was also an unpleasantness about the scripts: innocents regularly killed off, and some episodes ending with the Mysterions winning. Scarlet himself was a humorless copy of a murdered man. Was a fan of “UFO” for the girls’ uniforms if nothing else; somehow never started “Space 1999”. Don’t know if “Joe 90” or other later shows got any exposure in my neighborhood, but did catch “Terrahawks” by accident. The idea seemed to be hand puppets instead of marionettes, and it was a bad idea.

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