Buck Rogers in the 25th Century

Season 1 Episode 22

Buck's Duel to the Death

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Mar 20, 1980 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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out of 10
32 votes
  • An episode like a "Twinkie" - it looks edible but there's nothing there in the long run.

    Buck must save a planet from a ruthless dictator who subdues his foes with electrical bolts of power.

    There really is not a lot going on in this episode, lots of endless chases and escapes leading up to the inevitable showdown at the end. William Smith is his usual hulking self, though he delivers sci-fi/fantasy lines of this nature well-enough. Keith Andes has a distinctive voice, but like the "Star Trek" episode "The Apple", he's scripted with very wooden and chopped dialog. Perhaps Twiki is slightly less annoying than usual as he serves a scientific purpose in the episode's climax.

    Still, you have to wonder. This episode (like most) still looks fairly expensive to produce - lots of sets, opticals, matte paintings, space scenes (though some of the space battle shots are awkwardly composited here), but it serves such a simple story. As is usual, the demand to include numerous attractive young women leads to some pretty atrocious acting, especially the youngest daughter of the prime minister. It's almost like there is some driving need to stage a "Charlie's Angels" of the future. Overall, like many episodes, this one could at least use more of the camaraderie of some of the movies of the time, such as the big-screen "Flash Gordon" release.