"The Spores" starts off with a bang and never lets up. This is a memorable, series-defining episode. Great character actor John Randolph (one year after his moving appearance in the film "Seconds") plays a police officer who witnesses the burnouts of two aliens amid the wreck of their van along a country road. The van's driver, played very nicely by young Gene Hackman, escapes from the wreck with a metal suitcase containing spores that will develop into new aliens. Randolph's supervisor (Wayne Rogers) does not believe the older officer's story of disappearing bodies and warns he may be risking his retirement benefits if he submits the report. Enter David Vincent. He has heard of the incident and figures in must involve Invaders. Hackman's suitcase is stolen by young toughs who can't open it. Later, they stash it in a car owned by Mark Miller and Patricia Smith. Miller discards it after the couple squabble about what to do with it. Now it's in the possession of some children who plant the spores in a local greenhouse. There is an eerie scene of the spores beginning to grow that may recall "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" (1956 or 1978 versions). This is an exciting, well-acted episode that makes a good case for the greatness of the series.