There was a tv si-fi show in the 1960’s called Lost in Space. A while back, I saw a rerun episode that had a seen showing the father, Dr. Robinson, with a bible and the others in a moment of prayer. I don’t remember the story of that episode. Almost 50 years later, will we ever see a moment of prayer on tv like that again?
MAS*H included a character who was a priest. I am sure there were prayers in that series:)
Father Mulcahy is the biggest reason I joined the Army, and watching MASH was one of the first times I felt called to the priesthood. Take that as you will.
I don’t remember that scene. That was a long time ago. I remember that my Catholic neighbors, my siblings, and I used to pretend that the gondola on their swing set was the Jupiter II.
There really aren’t that many family shows on prime time TV anymore other than sitcoms. I suspect that until there are such shows we won’t see a lot of main characters praying.
AirWolf…the TV show that starred Jan Michael Vincent who flew the tricked out helicopter had one episode where a pastor’s family was held hostage…and the pastor prayed that God would deliver them by His “strong swift hand”…and as he prayed…the AIrWolf rose out of it mountain hanger and winged it’s way to save them…as the pastor prayed his face was superimposed over the rising AirWolf.
If they were Christians – that explains why they kept forgiving Dr Smith, week after week!
Dr. Smith routinely tried to sell Will Robinson to the Space Zoo, or the Space Museum, every episode in return for an empty promise of a trip home from the aliens, yet Will’s parents still let him go wandering off with Dr. Smith (who gave everyone the creeps, aside from trying to sell Will to the Space Circus) on a hostile planet, instead of throwing Dr. Smith out the airlock while they were in space. They weren’t exactly models of good parenting practices.
I remember an episode of the original Star Trek where they sought to help a bunch of sun worshippers on one of those planets that looked just like the Paramount backlot, and at the end, learned from Uhura that they were actually “Son” worshippers, i.e., the Son of God. It was an unusual coda for Gene Roddenberry, who I think was an atheist or agnostic, and I remember even as a kid thinking the homonym mix-up made no sense unless the aliens spoke English.
I remember that one too - it was a parallel Earth where the Roman Empire never fell, and so the dominant religion was the cult of Jupiter, etc, and Christians were still an underground minority.
Maybe in the parallel Earth, even if they spoke a different language, there were parallel homonyms, so that the words for “Sun” and “Son” in that language also sounded the same…
Parallel homonyms? I like that!
It always cracks me up when space and time travelers arrive on a new planet and make their wise cracking remarks and the aliens seem to understand the slang. …until the writer feels like introducing some humor and then the aliens take the slang at face value.
I’ve always wondered about Gene Roddenberry and that particular Star Trek episode. But none of the characters actually acknowledge that Christ was truly the Son of God; just that Christianity played an important role in the development of civilization. There are TOS episodes that acknowledge that religion plays some role, however small.
–Bread and Circuses–
Spock: Sun worship is usually a primitive superstition religion.
Uhura: Don’t you understand? It’s not the sun up in the sky. It’s the Son of God.
Kirk: Caesar and Christ, they had them both. And the word is spreading only now.
–Who Mourns for Adonais?–
Kirk: Mankind has no need for gods. We find the One quite adequate.
–The Ultimate Computer–
M-5: Murder is contrary to the laws of man and God.
(Of course M-5 is a dangerous computer that is using the Enterprise to attack other Federation Starships but that phrase reflects the belief of his creator.)
All from the middle of the second season - perhaps reflects a particular writer, moreso than Gene Roddenberry?
I believe Spock made the comment when they made first contact…“Interesting Captain, coloquial 20th century English!”
Lets not forget that Charles Schultz really had to struggle against the network executives to include Linus reciting the Lucan account of the Nativity in A Charley Brown Christmas. And that was back in 1967!
Roddenberry was not only a private anti-semite (ask both Nimoy or Shatner for confirmation on that!) he was a pretty confirmed anti-monotheist in general. Rodddenberry had already been eased out of creative control by that time, if he haddnt its doubtful that episode ever would have been done.
If I remember correctly, that episode was one of the early episodes that were more serious than the later ones. Different writers, Jonathan Harris’ Dr. Smith is almost unrecognizable.
Irwin Allen, as I recall was pretty conservative. His other shows, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Land of the Giants, Time Tunnel Swiss Family Robinson, while silly, they all had a moral underpinning absent from other shows at the time.
Notice the preacher who challenges God in Allen’s film The Posiden Adventure.