Tuesday, April 29, 2008


If it weren't for a last-minute head's-up from François O. Beaulieu, I would have missed recording last night's episode of 'The Big Bang Theory'. "The Nerdvana Annihilation" was about the guys chipping in to buy a replica of the time machine used in the 1960 movie version by George Pal. (The film starred Rod Taylor, Yvette Mimieux, Alan Young, and Sebastian Cabot.)

According to Francois, the sitcom used Fred Barton's Time Machine prop, which was made by John Rigg.

The characters thought they won an online auction to get a miniature version of the Time Machine, but instead got the full-sized model. There was a miniature version seen in the movie, but the original was lost in a 1961 fire at George Pal's home in Bel-Air.

The story of the nameless Time Traveler can be found in Toobworld as well. Sadly, it was a live BBC production from January 25, 1949, and no copy was preserved. One month later, with a partially re-written script, the production was again mounted, but still no copy was made.

There was a version broadcast in 1978 which starred John Beck, but it modernized and Americanized the story. Perhaps the only character to survive this translation was Weena, the beautiful Eloi from 802, 701 AD.

More interesting for Toobworld is how often the author of the story appears in Toobworld, in much the same way as other authors have done who share the same dimension as their fictional creations (like Mark Twain, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and coming soon via 'Doctor Who', Dame Agatha Christie).

Those who have played Wells on Television include:

Robert Burnier (H.G. Wells) . . . "Énigmes de l'histoire" (1956) {Le mystère de la Mary Celeste (#1.3)} TV Series

Hamilton Camp (H.G. Wells 2) . . . "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" (1993)

Terry Kiser (H.G. Wells 1) . . . "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" (1993)

Michael Sheen (H.G. Wells) . . . HG Wells: War with the World (2006) (TV)

Jeremy Sinden (H G Wells) . . . "BBC2 Playhouse" (1974) {Fothergill (#7.9)} TV Series

Tom Ward (II) (H. G. Wells) . . . "Infinite Worlds of H.G. Wells, The" (2001) (mini) TV Series

'Timecop' Logan met the young HG Wells while hunting Ian Pascoe in 1888 London after he took the place of Jack the Ripper. And this 'Timecop' episode ("A Rip In Time") can help splain away why Wells went through so many recastaways, even within the same series as was the case with 'Lois & Clark'. During the episode, we learned that Catherine Eddowes was murdered on November 7th, 1888. However, in the real world history, as well as in other televersions, Eddowes was killed on September 30th, 1888.
Therefore Logan traveled back in Time to an alternate TV dimension.

And this can be used for all of the other versions of HG Wells as seen on TV. 'Lois & Clark' already takes place in another dimension since the Superman of the main Toobworld was - and always will be - the one played by George Reeves in 'The Adventures of Superman'. (Even if he has passed away on Earth Prime-Time.)

If any of the HG Wells portrayers can be accepted as the official televersion of the author, I'd suggest it be Tom Ward as seen in the 2001 mini-series about Wells.

If you'd like to read more about the 1960 movie version of 'The Time Machine', then visit "
The Time Machine Project".

You can also read more about the movie prop

Toby OB

"It's seven years ago.... My time machine worked!"
Chandler Bing


Anonymous said...

A Young Herbert Wells was part of the Sixth Doctor story, "Timelash," supposedly getting inspiration during the adventure for War of the Worlds and The Time Machine.


Toby O'B said...

Thanks, Hugh! That'll teach me to write this stuff down! Timelash wasn't in that IMDb list (neither was 'Timecop'), but a Google image search brought me to a site that had his picture. But with my Swiss Cheese Memory, I forgot to add it. Oh well......