Planet of the Apes (1974– )

TV Series  |   |  Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 2,301 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 15 critic

Two astronauts and a sympathetic chimp friend are fugitives in a future Earth dominated by a civilization of humanoid apes.


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Title: Planet of the Apes (1974– )

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The story behind the making of the 5 "Planet of the Apes" movies.

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A TV repairman / mad scientist creates a device that transports him to another world where women have banished men to a forbidden zone and taken apes as their love slaves.

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This is not an original made-for-TV movie, but two episodes of the 1974 TV series Planet of the Apes (1974) edited together.

Directors: Arnold Laven, Don Weis
Stars: Roddy McDowall, Ron Harper, James Naughton
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Plot is unknown.

Director: Matt Reeves
Stars: Woody Harrelson, Andy Serkis, Terry Notary


Complete series cast summary:
 Galen (14 episodes, 1974)
 Alan Virdon (14 episodes, 1974)
 Pete Burke (14 episodes, 1974)
 Urko (11 episodes, 1974)
Ron Stein ...
 Gorilla Guard / ... (10 episodes, 1974)
Booth Colman ...
 Zaius (6 episodes, 1974)
Eldon Burke ...
 Chilot / ... (5 episodes, 1974)


Television series about a group of astronauts who travel in time and become marooned on a planet. Unbeknownst to them, they are actually on future Earth. The astronauts encounter an advanced civilization run by apes, but supported by enslaved human workers. Written by Tad Dibbern <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

13 September 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El planeta de los simios  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(14 episodes)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone Sound Recording)


Aspect Ratio:

See  »

Did You Know?


This was Roddy McDowall's first starring role in a television series. He later played the regular character Dr. Jonathan Willoway in The Fantastic Journey (1977), another short-lived science fiction series. See more »


In the pilot episode (after the astronauts have been captured by Urko), Alan abrades the ropes binding his wrists against a rock. Yet in the close-up of his wrists, the ropes are not frayed where he had been rubbing them and they don't break. They just fall off his arms. See more »


Urko: These humans are dangerous, don't you understand that? They think that they're as good as we are!
See more »


Follows Planet of the Apes (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

Return from the Meeting of Ron Harper ("Alan Virdon")
27 April 2004 | by (NJ) – See all my reviews

I have just returned from the Chiller Theatre Convention in NJ (April 25, 2004), where my children and I met in person with Ron Harper who played Alan Virdon in the "Planet of the Apes" television series. We encountered a genuinely "good guy", much like the noble character he played on the "Planet of the Apes" television series. The meeting made a favorable impression upon my children -- Mr. Harper's autograph is already framed and hanging on their wall.

I enjoyed the "Planet of the Apes" television series as a child when it first aired in 1974, so I was intrigued to watch it again on DVD with my children. After watching the DVDs, I can report that I still enjoy the show. It is a shame that the series only ran for 14 episodes. Perhaps if Galen, Burke, and Virdon had been renewed for another season, the story lines would have broken-free from "The Fugitive"-type theme that dominated its (much too short) run? Even so, some of the episodes were of high quality, and, in my opinion, were actually as good as (if not better than) my two least favorite of the full-length "Planet of The Apes" motion pictures: "Escape from the Planet of the Apes" and "Battle for the Planet of the Apes". In particular, the episodes of the television series which took place within devastated city ruins standout in my mind as quite excellent television productions. I suggest that a single "Best of" DVD be released containing four of the better episodes for those fans who will find the $40 to $50 price tag for the Complete Series too steep.

Some have questioned the logical inconsistencies in the television series. They note that some things that happen in the television series contradict things that happened in the films. One problem with their arguments -- with the introduction of time travel, the notion that history can be altered repeatedly by those who travel through time is introduced. Thus, the appearance of a dog in 3085 (the year depicted in the television series) does not contradict the claim made in "Conquest of the Planet of the Apes" that all cats and dogs were killed-off in the late-20th Century. Theoretically, a future time traveler might have traveled back in time and caused an event that saved dogs from annihilation. Also, it is conceivable that dogs were re-introduced into society somewhere between the late-20th Century and 3085, as scientific advancements in genetics made it possible. So, there is little merit to the argument that some events depicted in the television series don't jibe with events depicted in the films.

I feel that this television series very competently portrayed a believable ape-dominated world of the future. I recommend this box set, but with a caveat -- take your time getting through the 14 episodes, as the underlying "fugitive-on-the-run" theme can get monotonous if you watch all the episodes one-after-another.

24 of 27 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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