In the year 2063, the World Space Fleet is extending mankind's reach beyond the solar system. Leading the charge is the incredible spaceship Fireball XL5, commanded by the dashing and daring Colonel Steve Zodiac. With his ... more »steadfast crew--the brilliant professor Matt Matic, the lovely space doctor Venus and Robert the Robot--Steve patrols the vast reaches of Sector 25, where strange races inhabit distant planets. In 1962, legendary producer Gerry Anderson (Space: 1999, UFO) turned his attention to space for the first time. The result was FIREBALL XL5, a rarely-seen gem that paved the way for later supermarionation masterpieces like Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet & the Mysterons. This definitive collection includes all 39 black and white episodes of FIREBALL XL5, digitally restored and presented in their original production order. Return to Galactic Sector 25 as FIREBALL XL5 flies again in this DVD set.« less
This show made an impression on me as a four-year-old
Jmark2001 | 03/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I would have been three or four when this show was on the air. But yet the few episodes I must have seen stuck with me strongly enough that I tried for years to find out what it was. The only thing I remembered was "Fireball." A year or so ago, the Gerry Anderson Thunderbirds set came out on DVD. Based on the cover photos, I thought maybe this was the show I had enjoyed as a small child in South Dakota. When I heard about the Fireball XL5 release it all clicked. End result: I ordered this set and have watched about six episodes. Nostalgia aside, it's really a fun look back at what must have been and exciting space adventure for kids back in 1962. The stories are what grabbed me originally and I must say, they aren't at all bad. You can see a lot of influence on Star Trek in this effort. Is it cheesy? Of course! But in the best way. It's a glimpse into the excitement of the JFK-era space race that must have captured every person's imagination in the early 1960s. One of my friends said of the cover - "It looks so old!" But the transfers in this box are pretty amazing for a 41-year-old show. The intro to the show ("OK Venus?" "OK, Steve!") are the perfect start to each episode and a chance to boldly go where no puppet (these shows are filmed in "Super Marionation") has gone before. If you're someone who likes clever stories and is willing to put up with Black and White video from 1962, I think you'll have a blast!"
As nostalgia, this is great
Jmark2001 | Florida | 07/02/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Kennedy was in the White House when this aired. No one had heard of the Beatles yet. All televisions were black and white and most ran on cathode tubes. I was 7 years old. This is a great treat to anyone who wants to relive the children's programs of their youth. It is not sophisticated like "Thunderbirds", though. Thunderbirds had effects that still make you wonder how they did them. It also had scripts that approached B movie quality. Fireball is in black and white and is quite primitive by comparison. Still, it will make you want to grab some milk and cookies and watch with delight."
Well worth the wait
W. Jones | Mantua, New Jersey | 03/18/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It took 41 years, but we finally have them all, and in glorious black & white! I loved these as a 6 year old and appreciate it even more now. Looking back at these, I see their influence on more mainstream shows like Star Trek (Space City's chief engineer was even Scottish...beam me back to '62 Scotty!). The re-mastering is superb, the bonus stuff is great. I wish there had been some sort of guide book in the set with info about the episodes, but all-in-all it's still a great set. A must-have for fans and campy fun for everyone else."
Reunited after 40 years
W. Jones | 02/14/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"What a delight it was when the mailman dropped off this box set today, I dropped work at once to sit down and watch it. It's hard to believe that it has been 40 years since a young boy sat in front of his parents old Zenith to watch this delightful show, my favorite Anderson production after "Supercar".The first thing I noticed was how the resolution and sharpness of the DVD format revealed exactly how cheesy an affair this show was. Every wire, scratch, scuffmark and dirt spot on the puppets and props shows up in crystal clarity. Before the DVD I never noticed the string that pulled Fireball down the launch rail, and I did not recall that Venus's eyes were just painted on her face. Of course, that only makes the whole thing more endearing in my book.After the great Stingray box, the extras in the package seem skimpy. There are only two commentary tracks, director Alan Patillo, who speaks very quickly in a Scottish accent, and voice artist David Graham. There is also a not very interesting 17 min. feature on the guy who drew the Fireball comic art for the old TV21 magazine. There are also some production stills on each of the five disks. Also, note that the individual disc sleeves have some confusing discrepancies as far as what episodes are contained on which disc.Still, it's great to be reunited with this show on something besides a poorly dubbed VHS bootleg. Thanks, A&E Video. Now, come up with Supercar and I can die a happy man."
FIREBALL XL5 FINALLY LANDS IN OUR DVD PLAYERS!
Ernie Clark | Battle Creek, MI USA | 02/06/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Fireball XL5 was my favorite childhood TV show and I was brokenhearted when NBC replaced it with Underdog! The things
you loved as a kid seem to always stay tucked away inside your
inner child. When I found out that the series was coming out on
DVD I felt the same thrill that I felt each saturday morning 40
years ago. As an adult Fireball XL5 seems kind of silly and the
production is far below Gerry Anderson's later kid's programs
but it's still the best series he did. This DVD boxed set features all 39 episodes in digitally remastered quality. If
you remember this show from when you were a kid buy this set. With the world in the state it's in today this program will bring
back your childhood innocence for a few hours and make you feel
young and happy again. To this day I have a model of Fireball XL5
sitting on my TV. Thanks to A & E for finally releasing this great show!"