Review: Star Maidens
DVD: Star Maidens (1976)
Far away in a distant solar system, the citizens of the planet Medusa have no idea that a comet is on a deadly trajectory that will knock it out of its current orbit and send it spinning through space. The inhabitants are human in appearance (saves on expensive prosthetics) and it is the females who rule their society, while the males are servants and endure menial tasks. This way of life gets a shake-up though when Medusa finally comes close to planet Earth and 2 males escape to this new world with their matriarchs in hot pursuit. Turning the stereotypical gender roles of the 1970’s on it’s head, Star Maidens gives a sci-fi slant on gender equality.
Prior to this series arriving here at 60 Minutes With towers, I had no previous knowledge of Star Maidens and it had completely passed me by upon its release in 1976. How the hell did that happen!? As a fan of UFO, Space 1999, Blake’s 7 and many more sci-fi series of the 70’s, they were my TV bread and butter and so I have no idea how I missed Star Maidens. Thank you Simply Media for releasing this and bringing it to my attention.
Gareth Thomas (also seen in the aforementioned Blake’s 7) and Pierre Brice play Shem and Adam, the 2 male escapees whose initial experience of planet Earth sets the tone for the entire series as they are astonished at the differences in gender roles and often act like 2 naughty boys playing truant from school. They are pursued by Fulvia and Octavia (Judy Geeson and Christiane Krüger) who steadfastly refuse to adhere to the new worlds laws and often find themselves in trouble due to their stubbornness to change their attitudes.
Star Maidens is an English/German co-production with a cast sprinkled from across Europe, all of whom wear a variety of low budget sci-fi costumes that is reason alone to buy this series. Other reasons include; the off colour blonde streaks that each male of Medusa sports in their hair, seeing cars once again with vinyl roofs, and an incredible handheld device called a ‘man finder’ that tracks males by their individual scent. I want NECA to make a man finder so that I can revel in its awesomeness every day.
If low budget sci-fi is your thing, and it is certainly mine, then Star Maidens will have you blasting through its 13 episodes (each running at a bite size 22 minutes each) in no time at all, and then watching them again as it certainly rewards repeat viewings. It is a series that certainly doesn’t get the coverage or love that I believe it definitely deserves and it is highly recommended viewing, especially if you lived through the 1970’s.
Review by Dave (host of 60 Minutes With) from discs kindly supplied by Simply Media.