Pioneers Of Television: Science Fiction
Airs Tuesday, January 18, 2011 at 8 p.m. on KPBS TV
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Science Fiction Trivia
Get your Vulcan Mind Meld ready as you try to answer these tough questions. Take the TV Trivia Quiz
They were the stars of the small screen in the early years of television, and much of the nation came to a halt whenever their shows aired. They strolled, sprinted, fought, laughed, cried and loved through worlds that took viewers to places past, present and future. As the originators of these innovative television formats, they provided an essential escape for millions of viewers who eagerly waited to watch them each week.
"Pioneers Of Television" returns to PBS for a second season in January 2011, offering the inside stories of these formidable visionaries who recall the fledgling medium they shaped with their creativity, foresight and wisdom.
This series once again transports viewers behind the scenes for a revealing look at the inception of four of the most popular genres in television: science fiction (January 18), westerns (January 25), crime dramas (February 1) and local kids’ TV (February 8).
This episode highlights storytellers Gene Roddenberry, Irwin Allen and Rod Serling, who created the storylines and characters behind the best-loved futuristic television of their time.
But as Roddenberry’s “Star Trek” competed for ratings with Allen’s “Lost in Space,” each show’s creator aimed for a very different direction. Roddenberry and Serling (of “The Twilight Zone”) used the future as a stage for modern morality plays, and William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, Nichelle Nichols and other science-fiction stars describe how they prepared to interact on-camera with a malevolent alien force… or, perhaps, a giant radish.