Shipwrecked on Planet X

Rocky Jones and Supporting Cast

Columbia MJV-155

Total Time: 6:31

Rocky Jones, Space Ranger is a syndicated science fiction television serial originally broadcast in 1954. The show lasted for only two seasons and, though syndicated sporadically, dropped into obscurity. But because it was recorded on film rather than being broadcast live as were most other TV space operas of the day, it has survived in reasonably good condition. The film format also allowed more elaborate special effects and sets, exterior scenes and much better continuity.

The program was aimed mainly at children, so the plots were simple and always involved good versus evil and Rocky Jones outsmarting or outfighting the bad guys. By today’s standards for television science fiction, the Rocky Jones serials seem crude and simplistic. But for its time, years before humans first journeyed into space, the sets, props, and optical effects were remarkably well done. Indeed, many of the effects that became standard sci-fi fare, such as the forward view screen and automatically opening doors were seen first on Rocky Jones.

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