Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Flash Gordon back in action on SciFi Channel

The SciFi Channel is planning a new Flash Gordon TV series and has already tapped Smallville alum Eric Johnson as their leading man. How good or bad this show will be is pretty much up for grabs. Movie and television versions of Alex Raymond's comic strip space hero have waxed and waned over the years but Flash still holds a strong
place in the hearts of many sci fi fans,myself included.

My dad first introduced me to Flash,when I was a kid. He had my brother and I watch the old Buster Krabbe serials that PBS used to play on the weekends(wish someone showed those programs again). When the Alex Raymonds strips were reprinted by Kitchen Sink Press several years ago,my dad bought a few volumes to add to his huge art and artisty home reference library(still have volume one on hand). Raymond's panoramic visuals and keen eye for details inspired my father,along with the classic hero seeking justice and allies against tyranny storyline that has persisted in the FG universe. Flash was and is,an All American hero:

When the big screen film version of Flash came out in 1980,we eagerly made our way to NYC to catch it(in fact,the three of us-my dad,my brother and me-saw Raging Bull that day as well. Not your average double feature there). Even tho the movie was incredibly goofy,Max Von Syndow ruled as Emperor Ming the Merciless. Along with Brian Blessed as Vultan,great godawful lines like"No! Not the bore worms!" and of course,the brilliant music by Queen,Flash Gordon increased his pop culture status with this campy cult flick:




There's also been several animated FG shows,the last one appearing in 1996. I recall watching the Filmations one made in the late seventies,which used the look of the early Alex Raymond strips the best:

So,will this new take on Flash be a help or a hinder to the legend? It's been long enough since Flash,Dale Arden and Dr. Zarkov took us to Mongo that everything old will be new again. Atleast it's not Flesh Gordon that folks want to revive(and no,I've never watched the porn version and never will.) Hopefully,Flash will inspire yet another generation to bring more sci-fi fantasy to life.

1 comment:

Pop Culture Diva said...

I'm not much into science fiction but I love the Flash Gordon movie. It' so campy. Like Clash of the Titans.