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  Tom Corbett - Space Cadet

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> Description 
Tom Corbett was conceived by CBS in late 1950 to cash in on the enormous popularity of DuMont's Captain Video. The two programs were not directly competitive - in fact Tom Corbett (6:45-7:00 P.M.) led into Captain Video (7:00-7:30 P.M.) three nights a week - and they differed in substantial ways. Tom Corbett had a much larger budget and thus more realistic special effects, such as blastoffs, weightlessness, etc., all done live through various techniques of video hocus-pocus. And the emphasis was less on futuristic hardware (though there was plenty) and more on the adventures of the young cast.

Tom Borbett, curly-headed teenage cadet at the Space Academy, four centuries hence, was a figure with whom youngsters could identify. With him in training to become Solar Guards were wisecracking Cadet Roger Manning ("So what happens now, space heroes?" "Aw, go blow your jets!") and the quieter Astro, a Venusian (planetary boundaries were rather less important in the 24th century). Every week they blasted off in the spaceship Polaris to new advetnures somewhere in space, usually against natural forces rather than the sace villains who populated Captain Video. Their exploits were instructive as well asexciting. Program advisor Willie Ley, a noted scientist and author, worked in legitimate concepts such as variable gravity forces, asteroid belts, and anti-matter.

After three months on CBS Tom Corbett moved to ABC for a run of nearly two years. In addition kinescopes of the weekday serial were run on Saturdays on NBC during the summer of 1951 - as summer remplacement for Victor Borge! The series was also heard on ABC radio during 1952, with the same cast as the TV version. The Tom Corbett cast also made personal appearances to promote merchandise connected with the show (wonder if they offerend the most popular of the Cadets' 24th-century aids - the Study Machine?). Late in 1952 the series moved to Saturday daytime, where it continued, off and on, until the summer of 1955.

Based on the novel Space Cadet by Robert A. Heinlein.
 
> Airing History & Information 
Last Airing Sep 26, 1955
Premiere October 2, 1950
Episodes 217
Network CBS / ABC / NBC
Format/Time Black & White / 30 Minutes
Country United States
Upcoming Airs Not currently airing
 
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