The Moonbase 3 TV show was a 60 minute outer space sci-fi series that aired in the United Kingdom on BBC1. It was about a group of government representatives from Europe and the United Kingdom that lived on a base on the Moon.
Moonbase 3 Cast
Donald Houston .... David Caulder
Ralph Bates .... Michel Lebrun
Fiona Gaunt .... Dr. Helen Smith
Barry Lowe .... Tom Hill
Madhav Sharma .... Rao
Peter Bathurst .... Director General
Christine Bradwell ... Ingrid
Garrick Hagon .... Bruno Ponti
Moonbase 3 Trivia
During the 1970s, the BBC decided to clean out their inventory of recordings of old TV shows and Moonbase 3 was one of the shows where everything was trashed. Fortunately copies were discovered at a U.S. TV station in 1993 but, unfortunately, the copies' quality was not great!
The space suits used on Moonbase 3 were so expensive that they were saved by the BBC after Moonbase 3 ended. They were later used again for the series, "Doctor Who" in 1974 on the "Invasion of the Dinosaurs" episodes and in 1975 on "The Sontaran Experiment" episodes. In fact, the entire Moonbase 3 series was produced by the producers of Doctor Who while on hiatus between season ten and eleven of Doctor Who!
The title of the series suggests that there were other moonbases and there were! Moonbase 1 was manned by U.S. citizens, Moonbase 2 by Russians, Moonbase 3 by Europeans and Brits, Moonbase 4 by Chinese, and Moonbase 5 by Brazilians.
There was a concerted effort to keep Moonbase 3's scripts true to current scientific knowledge. A BBC science journalist named James Burke who had covered NASA's Apollo Program was hired as an adviser. Some of the lines spoken by the actors were actually things taken word-for-word from NASA transcripts!
Moonbase 3 took place in the year 2003, 30 years in the future. Moonbase 3 was 8-years-old at the time so it was built in 1995. Those were reasonable dates to project in 1973. No one at the time expected that mankind would abandon the manned space program after the moon landings. Even NASA was predicting that they'd land a man on Mars sometime during the 1980s! Unfortunately, once the U.S. beat the Soviet Union to the Moon, nobody wanted to spend any significant amount of money in space! As astronaut Gus Grissom once said, "No bucks, no Buck Rogers".
Moonbase 3 was generally considered to be a huge failure. Instead of emphasizing the wonder and awe of space exploration, Moonbase 3's scripts concentrated on explosive decompressions, astronauts being stranded with no chance of rescue, mental breakdowns due to the isolation from Earth, and a multitude of other negative possibilities that, frankly, turned audiences off! On a brighter note, it is possible that Moonbase 3 did give inspiration to others to produce better realistic British sci-fi programs in the future like "Star Cops" or "Space Island One".
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