Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: Season 1, Episode 1

Awakening (20 Sep. 1979)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 118 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 2 critic

In 1987, a space phenomenon sends NASA astronaut William "Buck" Rogers and his space shuttle off course and freezes his life support systems for 500 years. Buck is awakened in 2491 by the ... See full summary »


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Episode complete credited cast:
Duke Butler ...
Caroline Smith ...
Young Woman
John Dewey Carter ...
Supervisor (as John Dewey-Carter)
Twiki (voice)


In 1987, a space phenomenon sends NASA astronaut William "Buck" Rogers and his space shuttle off course and freezes his life support systems for 500 years. Buck is awakened in 2491 by the evil Draconians on their way to Earth to sign a peace treaty. However, Buck must convince the Earth Defense Directorate that the Draconians, led by the alluring Princess Ardala and her henchman Kane, are actually planning to conquer Earth instead. Written by Woodyanders

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis





Release Date:

20 September 1979 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


(Technicolor)| (technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the original script of the pilot, there was a subplot in which it is revealed that Kane had once been one of Dr. Huer's students. This is alluded to when Ardala comments, "You're from Earth, Kane...". Also, in the original script, during the reception for Ardala in the Inner City, there is a bantering conversation between Huer and Kane where he hints that he has progressed far further under the Draconians than Huer would have allowed him to. See more »


In the scene where Buck is awaiting execution, he is talking with Col. Deering and she tells him that she is there to give him a chance to prove he is innocent. A boom microphone is visible above them for a few moments. The scene changes and goes back and the microphone is no longer seen. This is at 41:39. See more »


[Buck and Wilma, flying Starfighters, witness Hatchet Fighters - both unaware that they are Draconian craft - slaughter a small squadron of Starfighters]
Capt. William "Buck" Rogers: [shutting off his fighter's Combat Computer] Colonel, I'm switching to Manual and see if I can start dishing out what we've been taking!
Col. Wilma Deering: Buck Rogers, I'm ordering you back to the base!
Capt. William "Buck" Rogers: [ignoring Wilma and sensing a Hatchet Fighter maneuvering to attack] Now then, let's see how you like a little old-fashioned Red Dogging!
See more »


References Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1934) See more »

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User Reviews

A great start to the series.
19 March 2008 | by (Hampshire, England) – See all my reviews

Awakening, the feature-length pilot episode of the TV series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (which was released theatrically here in the UK), is an excellent exercise in camp sci-fi which opens with a brief explanation of Buck's predicament (a malfunction in his spacecraft causes him to be frozen in space for 500 years), and is followed by a gloriously tacky title sequence in which sees our hero canoodling with various space-babes on a giant fluorescent light in the shape of his name.

Following these amazingly bad opening credits (which are accompanied by the catchy theme song, 'Suspension'), we see Buck's craft intercepted by the Draconians (led by the slutty Princess Ardala, played by Pamela Hensley), who are on their way to Earth to sign a treaty that will see them granted limited access to Terran airspace, in exchange for help in the fight against space pirates, who have been attacking Earth's trade ships. In reality, however, the Draconians are planning to conquer Earth—their flagship being full to the brim with fighter craft armed to the teeth.

Buck is awakened, suspected of being an Earth spy, and sent on his way back 'home', little knowing that his craft has been fitted with a device that will send details back to the Draconians on how to beat Earth's defence shield .

On his approach to Earth, Buck is intercepted by uptight Colonel Wilma Deering (Erin 'hubba hubba' Gray), who escorts hims to New Chicago, where he is once again suspected of being a spy—this time for the pirates. Buck is found guilty and sentenced to death, but is given one last chance to clear his name: he must prove to Wilma Deering that his hunch about the Draconians being prepared for battle is true.

With a witty script, decent special effects, and a cast who have are obviously having fun with the material, Awakening is a terrific introduction to the series. Hensley is great as the sexy princess with a thing for 500 year old men, Erin Grey delights as frosty Wilma Deering (the horniest woman to ever fly a star-fighter), and Gil Gerard puts in a solid turn as the charming Captain Rogers, who has lost none of his ways with the ladies during his time frozen in space.

If you have a weakness for dated, cheesy TV trash. packed with innuendo and corny jokes, then watch Buck Rogers—it's perfect entertainment for those seeking some light-hearted sci-fi silliness.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Attention Universal! Scene still missing from Awakening DVD SloppyMoe
People no longer think Wilma was the hottest on the show. tommifeb6
The fight scenes debtfull
Why the difference between seasons? mike-1871
Why does Twiki say 'beedeebeedeebee'? edspace
Dr. Huer, kind of sexy? Stan-64
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