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LAND OF THE GIANTS-COLLECTOR'S ITEM

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COLLECTOR'S ITEM

Production Number:

Filmed: (30)

First Aired: 11-2-1969 (33)



TEASER

Against Fitzhugh's recommendation, the girls call Dan and Steve, during the day, to help get a needed wire cord. Some giant discarded it into a waste disposal can. Dan and Steve lead an SID man away. The girls prompt a worried Fitzhugh---who's worried about himself---to help them pull the wire. A giant dobermin pinscher towers over them. Val tells them to stand still and not to anger it. Fitzhugh murmurs, "Dear lady, that thought is the furtherest from my mind." The dog barks at them.



ACT ONE

Fitzhugh leads the dog away as the trio run. The girls hide in a goldsmith's shop, Val not too sure Fitzhugh can lead the dog off but Betty more confident he can. Betty tells her they'll just have to rely on their own wits to get out of this one since Steve and Dan are miles away, avoiding the SID man. A giant in the shop, Garak, is having a doll's music box made for his Uncle Tojar. The two disagree about something and a torch falls, nearly hitting the girls, and causing Garak to see them. Betty escapes back to the vent they had already left but Garak drops a hankerchief on Val and sneaks off with her, the goldsmith demanding money for the music box and services. Betty tells Fitzhugh, who calls Steve, feeling guilty that Val was in his "special care". Garak drives off. He promises to free Val once she helps him celebrate his electrically wheelchair bound, old and grouchy unce's birthday. Garak pays the rich man a visit. Tojar has a vast, stolen collection of objects which he has gained illegally--by theft and murder. A suit of armor from the State Museam, a musical fountain which an entire family was destroyed for, trumpeting soldiers at his door, and more. He gets more money from his uncle and leaves. Betty warns Fitzhugh that the only way for them to keep track of where Val is, is to keep vigil at the goldsmith shop, not run away. Fitzhugh calls Mark and Barry who are at the ship camp. He claims to want to, "..charge" to Val's rescue. Garak returns, picks a flower near Fitzhugh and Betty, and almost sees them both. Steve and Dan arrive as Garak goes into the shop. The two of them have been followed by the SID man and his dog. Betty quickly tells Steve what she knows and he sends her back to camp. To stay with Garak---who has Val in his pocket---Steve takes the rope from a bemused Dan and hooks the pin and rope onto the bumper of Garak's car! Her rides the bumper after the SID man questions Garak. Dan tells a disbeliving Mark what Steve is doing. Mark asks, "He's what?" Dan asks Mark to try to make something that can get them to track him; Mark and Barry go into the ship to find something they can use. After a wild ride into the suburbs, the car stops short--and Steve, rope, and pin fall off the yellow sportscar!



ACT TWO

Garak takes the music box inside his small, humble home. Dan quiets a complaining Fitzhugh. Steve calls Dan, "Next time, I take the bus." He leaves his damaged radio on, so Mark, Betty, and Barry can trace it from the ship's outdoor radio set up which Mark made from Spindrift's auto radar control. Val and Steve are 3.8 miles at the east end of town--a residental section. Mark seems to know it. Mrs. Garak, who is concerned for Valerie's welfare, puts a dress on Val that she made--a ballerina dress---and the giantess teaches Val a dance routine. Steve climbs a crate, watches Garak as the giant put explosives in the bottom of the music box. Steve is nearly crushed when Garak tips a jar in front of the can Steve is hiding behind. Steve, later, accidentally spills some liquid. Mark meets up with Dan and Fitzhugh (who wants to have a sitting and think session). Mark thinks it better to think on their feet. From out of the sky, a giant raven lands on a rock just over them!



ACT THREE

Mark scares the raven off with a stick he lights on fire. The trio enter the Garak house through an open fruit cellar door (not shown). Fitzhugh tells Val, "Nothing's impossible when Fitzhugh is around." They can't bend the wire on Val's cage so Mark goes to check the workshop out, "Garak's or not Garak's," Val thinking the couple are still in there. Garak wants to put out mousetraps after hearing a sound Steve made accidentally. He puts Val in the prettier music box---and even though it has more room than her one woman brown like cage---it is still a cage when Garak locks it with a combination lock. When the phone rings (Tojar calling), Dan and Fitzhugh grab onto the music box doors when Garak places it on the floor. The pair are taken away with Val. Garak rides off in his sportcar, which shakes the three little people. Tojar, at his mansion, shows Garak a carosel he took from a "former friend". This allows the two men from Earth to hide in an open drawer on the table top. Val is shown and she does her dance. Mark tells Steve that the plans they are looking at show the box will blow up when the door is opened. Urgently, Steve tries to warn Dan but never finishes: Mark tosses a match down and sets off the liquid Steve had spilled earlier. It causes a blast which knocks them down and brings Mrs. Garak into the work shop room. She blames them for trying to kill she and her husband---and turns the vacum in her hands on the two men, who fall, about to be drawn up into it!



ACT FOUR

When Steve and Mark try to tell her the truth: Garak is planning to murder Tojar, she vaccums them up. Tojar faces Val, face to face, "Afraid of me, are you?" "Nope," she folds her arms. Tojar and Garak reveal that Val will stay a prisoner, even though Garak promised to release her. Tojar finds her delightful and keeps Garak in his will. He begins to work on the lock, threatening Val verbally. The two giants leave for drink. Fitz and Dan (with Dan yelling at Fitzhugh to help him) free Val, who told them to leave and save themselves. Dan said, "We're not leaving without you." Val goes down the lamp cord but Fitz, returning for the walkie talkie, steps on the remote control. The giants return---catching the men. Garak grabs Val from the floor. Mrs. Garak comes in, drops Mark and Steve down onto the table. Garak tries to go get more drinks---really to escape so Tojar can open the lock!



TAG

Steve yells out the truth to Mrs. Garak and Tojar. Garak threatens to crush him but his wife stops that. Steve tries to prove it by opening the door but Garak proves he is afriad. While the giants argue, the five escape the tabletop. Mrs. Garak walked out of the mansion. Garak tries to stop Tojar from phoning the police, knocking over the music box. It---and they explode with part of the house. The five, outside, watch, silently. They look back for one short glance and move on.





REVIEW: A tense episode, well directed. Robert Harris played mad movie monster maker in HOW TO MAKE A MONSTER in the late 50s which also starred Gary Conway. Guy Stockwell made this episode work as the shiftless, scheming, would-be-murderer. He is truly convincing. Susan Howard who went on to later star in nighttime soap DALLAS was less than convincing as the wife. Not her fault, it was mainly that the character was poorly written for. One scene has her caring for Val; the next has her trap Steve and Mark, not believing them, and dropping them down onto the table in Tojar's home. She was a gullible character--refusing to believe her husband could be so callous. He certainly wasn't very nice to her at all throughout the episode. I guess it fits into the series notion of having the giants act and think backward like in the 30s, 40s and 50s--that women were secondary citizens (and this seems to be reflected briefly in THE CLONES when Val mentions that one of the scientist giants is a woman--and we saw another in THE CRASH and another in TARGET: EARTH but in TARGET: EARTH Altha was mainly there due to the great efforts of her husband and she is seen as a jealous, vindictive creature who would do anything to keep her husband's status---and in DOOMSDAY Kobick is surprised that a lady can be a doctor and doesn't seem to believe this story from Betty and Fitzhugh even though it is the truth---I guess the land of the giants didn't yet have women's lib and women's rights equal to men's). The only trouble with that is the fact that no one mentions it at all---how abused she is verbally.



Val wore the yellow sleeved top at the beginning of this episode, then the dancer's costume. Deanna has related that she couldn't dance and she was hung over from a wild cast party the night before filming the dance sequences. Here, Fitzhugh was at his most self praising, complaining, self centered, cowardly worst--Sydney Marshall and Bob and Wanda Duncan could certainly write good stories for LAND OF THE GIANTS and good plotlines but they really didn't seem to know the characters of the main group of Spindrifters. All of their episodes seem to be a bit off with characterization but not too far off. Their Fitzhugh is not as likeable as say the Fitzhugh of all the other episodes particularly as an example THE INSIDE RAIL and NIGHT OF THROMBELTINBAR. Fitzhugh was the annoying way he was in COLLECTOR'S ITEM before this episode but not as much as was here, all in one episode, and as persistently negative and cowardly. But after all, he did lead the dog off. This all-daytime episode had some interesting effects (the car ride, the dog scene at the teaser). The mansion of Tojar's was a painting shot of the Bruce Wayne mansion photo used on BATMAN. The ending theme this time was the shorter version of the new second season theme.



Scenes from this episode were used as promos when LAND OF THE GIANTS aired on UHF TV 55 on Long Island when it was added to the line up of THE INVADERS, LOST IN SPACE, and VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA. The LAND OF THE GIANTS only ad had scences from THE MECHANICAL MAN---and there were two versions of this--one was long and one was very short. A narrator said, "At noon, pebbles become boulders, twigs become trees in a land too horrible for mortal man to imagine, a land of danger, a land of terror, a land of the giants..."



Another later and shorter promo has Fitzhugh hiding Barry from the police giants in THE CREED teaser and then close up-ing on him as he calls Steve---this is then put into a small box with dark lights spotlighting it and a blue criss crossing of lines as the station ID plays and a narrator says, "They're a billion light years from home in a strange land of the giants."



As an aside, LAND OF THE GIANTS also aired on Long Island on UHF channel 65 or some number like that in the mid 70s (75 I think). When it aired here it was totally uncut with maybe 30 seconds of ads, if that, the middle GIANTS music of station ID was there, and they even aired one "here are some scenes from next week's show". The promo was to THE LOST ONES and featured some exciting scenes---one was the sequence when Nick pushes Val around, "It's not gonna work chick." She had just told him in the promo, "We're not working with the giants." Another sequence was the fight as Joey gets trapped in the box. Nick yelling he was going to kill Steve; Steve and the giant hand; and Nick and Steve fighting as the trapper looks in on them; Barry telling Steve he thinks Fitzhugh is dead; Dolph threatening the girls with the hatchet; Nick threatening the men with the girls being hostage are also among the very short scenes during this.



LAND OF THE GIANTS has also been known to air in Boston (with a line up of VOYAGE, LOST, and TIME TUNNEL) with a few promos--one of them being Val and Steve hiding from the giant professor for the first time as they are in the box in the forest. THE TIME TUNNEL promo was really quite good with lots of scenes from many episodes as the ticking is heard with the background music over it all.

When GIANTS was on USA they ran an ad that was quite silly which said something to the effect of, "...maybe they can fool some of the giants some of the time, maybe they can fool all of the giants some of the time, but can they fool all of the giants all of the time...?" With this were short clips from THE CRASH, GHOST TOWN, and THE FLIGHT PLAN. It ends with Mark and Steve in the toy truck and Mark yelling, "Watch out!"

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