You may also be looking for the movie, The Cold Sun.
A typical 1950's premise. The Earth's sun is growing colder because it is developing a coating on the surface that is preventing the heat of the sun from escaping. Rather than freeze to death, the Office of Space Affairs hits on the idea of shooting missiles at the sun to break up that heat retaining coating! And to be sure we don't miss hitting the sun with a missile, we will have to land on the moon of Mercury! Silly? Of course! But this is a kid's show, after all... What better way to introduce a little science to your children than to explain how the sun works!
This episode introduces Biff to the series; gives Ranger Clark some much needed screen time; shows that Vena is capable of doing something other than sitting at a desk with a slide rule; and shows that Bobby can tease along with the best of them! This episode brings back Pinto Vortando, and every twelve year old will not want to miss Vena sun bathing on Herculon!
|The Cold Sun|
|Original Air-Date|| October 17, 1954 (Chapter I)|
August 31, 1954 (Chapter II)
September 7, 1954 (Chapter III)
|Written By||Warren Wilson|
|Directed By||Hollingsworth Morse|
|Order in Series||11th Episode Produced|
|Order in Season||11th Episode Aired|
|Next Episode||"Inferno in Space"|
The XV3 - the Silver Moon - streaks toward Earth. Aboard are Rocky Jones, Vena, Professor Mayberry, Bobby, and some other unnamed, rather bored looking Space Ranger as co-pilot. They are ending a mission and talking about their plans for their time off. Bobby is ready for some real swimming and fishing! Professor Mayberry is very up for some cold water trout fishing, and fasntisizes about catching one right there in the cockpit! But Vena wants the warmth of the beach for her shore leave.
They radio the port of Earth and Secretary Drake welcomes them back, but the cold spell Earth is having has not ended. Drake introduces Rudy DiMarco, Earth's Olympic Champion! Vena primps herself at the sight of such a he-man. This is not missed by Bobby who speculates Rudy is more of a man's man, and teases Vena about it!
Secretary Drake heads out into the cold to meet the landing Silver Moon! He is set in his decision to welcome every Space Ranger home personally! Even Rudy DiMarco is eager to meet Rocky! But we learn of his two-faced act with Doctor Reno, trying to get the so-called minority of Earth into a position of power! Something foul is afoot with these two!
Secreatry Drake welcomes Vena, Mayberry, Bobby, and Rocky (the fifth wheel copilot choses to not come out of the Silver Moon...) The crew all have leave coming, and Rocky plans to spend much of it in the Ranger Gym! Professor Mayberry is perplexed that the sun does not seem to be throwing out any heat, only light.
At the warmer Office Of Space Affairs Headquarters, Secretary Drake talks about the newest planet to join the United Worlds - Herculon! When Old Man Bar-Barro was in charge, Herculon was hostile to Earth and the United Worlds, but daughter Juliandra is now in charge. The phototape of her declaration is played. She offers Biffen Cardoza as a symbol of their planet and it's ambitions, and as a working ambassadorial exchange. Professor Mayberry quietly suggests Rudy DiMarco in exchange as Earth's best offering.
In the Ranger Gym, Rocky, Vena, and Bobby work out. Professor Mayberry arrives to bow out of the trip to Herculon. Mayberry has noticed that there seems to be a surface disturbance on the sun. This requires further attention, and the Mount Townson Observatory in Australia offers a better look at the sun!
Rudy DiMarco and Dr. Reno arrive. They conspire to show Rudy is stronger than Rocky to better win favor with the once war like planet Herculon. Once dominating the favor of Herculon, Rudy can manipulate them back to war against Earth and weaken the Uniter World's position!
Rudy offers Rocky a chance to box. Vena, and Bobby are naturally betting on Rocky! Mayberry is asked to be time keeper. Bobby offers his best fighting advice, but even with the "pang, pang, zooie", Rudy wins anyway!
Launch time! Secretary Drake offers some last minute advice as the Silver Moon readys for her flight to Herculon. Dr. Reno informs Rudy that Trimby is their contact on Herculon! Rudy feels lucky to have the chance to represent Earth on Herculon, as the Silver Moon takes off! And again, Rudy feels lucky as the Silver Moon gets close to Herculon...
Trimby - Suzarain Juliandra's assistant - is happy to talk to the Silver Moon. Juliandra comes out and welcomes them over viseograph and is immediately taken by Rudy DiMarco! Biffen Cardoza is formally introduced, but Vena has trouble remembering his name. Bobby suggests a word association technique.
Once landed, Rocky attempts to contact Secretary Drake at Office Of Space Affairs Headquarters, but the growing interference cuts the call short.
Rudy and Trimby are introduced to each other! And Vena and Bobby run into Biffen, and ask to shorten his name to Biff.
Trimby and Rudy discuss a possible plan. If they could take out Rocky, Drake would send a force to investigate, and that force could be considered an invasion force! That night, they use an old Bar-Barro hypnotic ray on the sleeping Vena, and get her to write a distressful message to Rocky that she is being held in the "Abanox Depanro". The handwritten message is used to lure Rocky out into an ambush! Rocky defends himself, but is losing until Biff arrives in the nick of time to help! Biff lends a fist or two, and together they chase off their agressors!
Juliandra is embarrassed, and offers all possible assistance to find the missing Vena! But Bobby finds her asleep in her room all the time!
On Earth, Professor Mayberry reports the sun is the cause of the radio interference. The communications life line of the United Worlds is in danger! The interference has forced Earth back to ninteenth century communications! But Mayberry worries it could go back to an ice age if something isn't done!
Ranger Clark on station OW9 can recieve Rocky's signal easilly enough, but he cannot get through to Earth!
Is Earth in trouble? Just you wait and see!
Concerned about the weather, Professor Mayberry is glad there is cold but no precipitation! Secretary Drake, Dr. Reno, and Mayberry sit down to watch the day's phototape of the news. The fancy high tech tv (no hi def yet!) opens and shows the humans adapting well to the growing cold. But Dr. Reno takes the distraction of the phototape as an opportunity to sneak out and escape! The information that the Earth could be slipping into a glacial age has been kept secret! All personel have been comfined to base. Reno thinks he is an exception because he is a civilian, but Drake will not have it! Reno panics and hurls insults at Drake accusing him of hiding the truth and maybe even escaping himself when the time comes, choosing to save his own skin over those of his fellow humans!
On Herculon, Biff, Bobby, and Vena enjoy the warm rays of the Herculon sun, Una - "the one thing, the all important thing". Rocky breaks up their tanning to announce they will head back to Earth.
Meanwhile, Rudy and Juliandra have decided to get married. They prepare the signed document (by any other word) for Rocky to deliver to Secretary Drake, informing him of the changes to be made on Herculon.
On the Silver Moon, Biff is so anxious to show his stuff, that he oversteps his bounds and does some of Rocky's preflight switch clicking! The Silver Moon lifts off, and Rudy and Trimby conspire some more, knowing that the letter to Secretary Drake will impress Dr. Reno!
Professor Mayberry has effectively made a scale model of the known solar system, and demonstrates in Secretary Drake's office. Something has formed on the surface of the sun with enough thickness or solidness that it is containing the heat of the sun like a blanket over a fire! Torida - the newly discovered moon of Mercury - will be the base of operations to send two totanic missiles into the "blanket" around the sun and let the heat of the sun burn out and through it! Very Interesting indeed!
The Silver Moon heads for OW9. With the interference knocking out the astrophone and visiograph, they hope to get some answers from Ranger Clark!
But Ranger Clark is in trouble! Taking advantage of the communications disturbances, Pinto Vortando has turned pirate and has attacked the OW9! They take everything not nailed down, and then Pinto shoots out the gyro centriffic control, and the OW9 wobbles uncontrollably in space!
The XV3 gets close enough to OW9 to check on Radarvex. But Biff and Vena notice that OW9 is shaking and bobbing! Rocky docks the Silver Moon to the OW9, and Rocky saves Clark as the space station shakes itself apart!
Ranger Clark gets bandaged and swears off ping pong! Clark reports that the Space Rangers have set up a pony express system for communications between the United World sites. Rocky catches up with Pinto's ship. Pinto has plans to buy his own moon with all his spoils - that is, until Rocky fires his missiles and knocks out the pirate ship! Rocky magnetically locks and boards Pinto's ship through the C section air lock. A space gun blast bounces off Rocky's protective hemet, and in short order, Rocky and Biff's "superior forces" over take Pinto and his crew!
Dr. Reno now needs two space ships to fire the prepared totanic missiles at the sun. Reno wants the task done immediately to save his own skin, but Secretary Drake is willing to wait for Rocky. Reno protests! But Rocky lands in the nick of time!
Rocky introduces his crew and prisoners to Secretary Drake, Professor Mayberry, and Dr. Reno. Clark is happy to be back on Earth, but is sure cold! He takes the prisoners to the jail.
Drake informs Rocky of the mission to fire the totanic missiles. Rocky hands over the letter from Juliandra announcing the marriage to Rudy DiMarco, and passing rulership over to him once they are married.
Alterations to the Silver Moon are taking place to carry the totanic missiles. "Old Patches" wears her battle scars well!
The XV3 and XV9 will fly the mission. The XV9 will go first, as the Silver Moon is faster. They will rondezvous on Tortida, and fire the missiles...
...If all goes well...
Preperations continue on the Silver Moon while the XV9 loads in the launch pad, ready for the morning launch.
But Dr. Reno has other plans! He talks Pinto Vortando into piloting the XV9 to Herculon! Reno passes Pinto the keys and will await him on the launch platform!
Biff reports all is ready on the Silver Moon, and is delighted to learn he gets to go on the mission as copilot!
Reno sneaks aboard the Silver Moon and plants an exploding pear to foil Rocky Jones. Reno makes his escape to the XV9 and awaits Pinto. Pinto shows up cold, and is more than ready to leave! But Bobby is making final preperations in the XV9 and protests! He is subdued by Dr. Reno! Pinto hurries to launch before the Silver Moon explodes! The XV9 takes off!
Well on their way to Herculon, Pinto is uncomfortable with the totanic missile in the XV9. But Dr. Reno reports that there is a safe key to activate the missile that is otherwise harmless until the key is inserted. Pinto is updated on the Herculon situation, and Bobby again protests - but is ejected from the cockpit for all his efforts!
Back on Earth, Biff and Clark report that the missile on the Silver Moon is still in working order and the ship can be repaired. Rocky and Mayberry report that it was Dr. Reno who must have planted the bomb, and that Bobby is missing!
On the XV9, Reno needs a break, and sends Bobby into the cockpit to copilot for a while. Bobby and Pinto talk. Bobby tries to explain why Pinto must turn around, but instead, Bobby insults Pinto's ego, and Pinto is not amused or even friendly at the thought of being considered a coward!
On Herculon, the XV9 lands. Rudy and Reno are reunited and plotting quickly for the wedding! Pinto has been awarded several medals to keep him quiet (Oh, the insanity!) - but they hardly work... Concerned that the word "coward" may indeed apply to him, Pinto confesses that Bobby is held captive on Herculon! Rudy responds by beating him senseless!
Meanwhile on Earth, Rocky, Biff, and a VERY secure Vena (...Okay - she's stoned...) blast off for Torida! They will have to make do with one totanic missile!
On Herculon, Reno and Rudy plan to use the control over the totanic missile on the XV9 in their favor. Bobby spills the beans on the situation, and Juliandra is hopping mad! She plans to toss Rudy and Reno in prison and fly the totanic missile back to Earth, but Reno out smarts her, and she has little choice if she wishes to save United Worlds.
Bobby goes to see the recovering Pinto before they leave, and says he has changed his mind about Pinto's cowardess. Bobby explains the new situation - which is "gonna be bad for a lot of people..."
Rocky is still on his way to Torida.
And Rudy and Reno are on their way too, with Juliandra (What? No guards? Not even her aid Trimby?) and Bobby! Rudy spots a meteor field (or so he claims) but has really spotted the Silver Moon. Rudy plans to blow it out of the space sky! ATTACK! Biff believes the ship shooting at them is the XV9. Rocky avoids any direct fire because Bobby could be on board. But he must defend agaisnt the attack! Rocky successfully disables the XV9, and they magnitize to board. Smoke overwhelms the XV9 as Rocky and Biff board. The XV9's C section is on fire! They Rescue Bobby who alerts them to the others in the cockpit! Joining hands they make it back to the XV3 and jet away just as the XV9 explodes!
The crowded XV3 lands on Torida. (Looking very much like Fornax!) Biff is quickly educated on the strange atmospheres on other planets (288 degrees out there, son!) Rocky and Biff suit up and walk on Torida to assess the situation. Rocky reboards the Silver Moon to fire the missile. Dr. Reno uses a secret wrist gun to force Rocky to let them go! But Rocky ingeniusly uses his helmet to block the shot! Rudy and Rocky fight with Rocky naturally winning!
Rocky fires the totanic missile. The sun explodes. Rocky and Biff watch the sun shift back to life. Biff comments that Rocky is the only person who ever actually did anything about the weather!
Smiles all around (well, except for the bad guys...) as they head back to a "warm" welcome on Earth!
- Richard Crane as Rocky Jones
- Sally Mansfield as Vena Ray
- Robert Lyden as Bobby
- Charles Meredith as Secretary Drake
- James Lydon as Biffen (Biff) Cardoza.
- Ann Robinson as Juliandra.
- Reginold Sheffield as Professor Mayberry.
- Ted Hatch as Pinto Vortando.
- Richard Avonde as Rudy DiMarco.
- Thomas Browne Henry as Doctor Reno.
- William Hudson as Ranger Clark (uncredited)
- Directed - Hollingsworth Morse
- Director of Photography - Ernest Miller.
- Production Manager - Dick L'Estrange
- Supervising Editor - Fred Maguire
- Edited - Richard Brockway (part 1)
- Edited - Danny B. Landres (part 2)
- Edited - Bert Jordon (part 3)
- Photographic Effects - Jack R. Glass
- Art Director - McClure Capps
- Casting Director - Bill Tinsman
- Sound - Frank McWhorter
- Sound - Joel Moss
- Script Supervisor - Hazel W. Hall
- Technical Advisor - Dick Morgan
- Technical Instruments - Loren Sackett
- Assistant Director - Dick Moder
- Film Coordinator - James Cairncross.
- Special effects - Carl Friend.
- Set Director - Rudy Butler.
- Costumes - Berman Costume Co.
- Make up - Ted Larson.
- Teleplay - Warren Wilson
- Executive Producer - Guy V. Thayer, Jr.
- Associate Producer - Arthur Pierson
- Producer - Roland Reed
- Original Music - Alexander Laszlo (uncredited)
- Produced in 1954 by Roland Reed Productions Inc. and Space Ranger Enterprises
- This three part episode is copywritten 1954.
- This episode features a new announcer's voice.
- This episode features a new layout for credits which now names the actor AND their character.
- This episode introduces Biffen (Biff) Cardoza who will replace the missing Winky as copilot.
- An unnamed (and obviously bored) Ranger temperarilly replaces Winky as Co-pilot of the Silver Moon in the opening.
- This is the second of three appearances of Pinto Vortando. In each appearance his facial scar changes! First it is horizontal, then it is vertical. then it is on the other cheek!
- There is no Professor Newton in this episode.
- Reginald Sheffield replaces the ill Professor Newton as the younger and more atheletic Professor Mayberry.
- Reginald Sheffield's real life son, Johnny Sheffield, played "Boy" in the Johnny Weismuller Tarzan series.
- Professor Mayberry has his own observatory too!
- Bobby is now nearly as tall as Vena and so polite, he never mentions it once! Bobby grows a very noticable two inches in this episode! From just below Vena's ear to at least an inch above it! (Though Vena's boots may account for an inch of height discrepency - there is no evidence that Vena was shoeless in any of the episode when standing next to Bobby.)
- Dr. Reno uses a towel to wipe sweat off of Rudy druing the boxing sequence. He messes up Rudy's hair, but recovers by smoothing it back out. Thank goodness for the grease and oils we once used to keep our hair all slicked down back then!
- ...They sure do wait until the very last minute to get on the ship before launching!
- Herculon uses the old astrophones from Ophiuchus.
- The landing of the XV3 on Herculon is a reuse of the landing on Ophiuchus footage.
- Before you suspect that Herculon is the planet the Ophiuchuns eventually landed on and took over, there is an overheard radio message in part two of "Inferno in Space" where Fornax is trying to call "New Ophiuchus". Also, the fact that Herculon's sun "Una" was considered a deity many years ago, should indicate that the Herculon people are NOT the displaced Ophiuchuns from season one.
- Herculon has it's own sun and is not a part of our solar system. In this episode, Rocky Jones has "officially" gone beyond our own solar system!
- Some of the Herculon office desk furniture appears to be from the under construction United Worlds station in "Pirates of Prah".
- See the fashionable lawn furniture of Ophiuchus reused as ACTUAL lawn furniture on Herculon!
- Ophiuchus wall lighting shows up on the back of Herculon office walls. (Everybody in space must shop out of the same Space Sears catalog...)
- The Cold Light device is replaced by the Radarvex on the Silver Moon.
- The Silver Moon seems to have an extra chair aboard for Clark to sit on in the central lounge area.
- Ranger Clark does not get credit in this episode.
- There is a reuse of the Ophiuchus gate walls as the Space Affiars repair building.
- Biff gets official Ranger clothes in episode three of this story. First work coveralls, then the casual uniform jacket and cap.
- Not exactly sure how the XV9 - which has been reported by Secretary Drake as being slower than the Silver Moon - made it all the way from a distant star, and was STILL able to catch up with Rocky on his way from Earth to Mercury's moon Torida...
- The three chapters that form this episode were edited together to form the movie, "The Cold Sun". It is available in DVD and old VHS.
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