19 December 2003 | mill3ww
I was 9 years old when "Time Tunnel" came on the air, and to an impressionable kid, this series was not so much a stretch as it would be when you're older. I used to love Friday nites on ABC, IIRC the lineup was Green Hornet, Rango (w/Tim Conway), Time Tunnel, Pruitts of Southampton (w/Phillis Diller). Memory is a little weak on the exact order, but I think that's close.
From the moment I saw the slide they put on just before the show began that said "The Time Tunnel, IN COLOR!" I was jealous of everyone that had a color TV (we had an old 21" B&W Olympic brand TV from the 50's). It wouldn't be until years later that I could see it in color. I was never that crazy about "Land of the Giants" or "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea", but I never missed "Lost in Space". I never understood as a kid why TT was cancelled (What do kids know? I was just upset my favorite show wasn't on anymore!)
Over the years I would see it pop up once in a great while on some UHF station where I lived in Florida (WTOG-44 in St.Pete in the early 70's). I didn't see it again for years until it reappeared on SciFi. I taped almost all the shows but missed a few. Now I keep hoping for them to come out on DVD as I keep reading, but they still haven't appeared.
I always especially loved the theme music at the beginning of the show, and used my cassette recorder in the 70's to get the theme music so I could hear it when I wanted (no vcr's then!). Sure the show inspired disbelief, but it's pure escapism. Even as a kid, I wondered out loud why they always landed where trouble was about to begin. It didn't matter though, it became my favorite show of all time and still is. I watched it on it's premiere night in 1966 and when I see "Rendevous with yesterday" it takes me back like a Time Tunnel to 1966 and laying on the floor in front of that old TV and being mesmerized by the effects and story...it's like listening to an old song and remembering the time and place where you heard it the first time.
I think it will always be a classic, even if it got (unjustly) cancelled after it's first season. Obviously, I'm not alone, with all the websites devoted to it and all the comments in forums, it will live on for a long time to come. I hope the DVD's come soon.