The Invaders was an American science fiction television series that ran on ABC for two seasons from January 10, 1967 through March 26, 1968. If you want some background on the basis for the show, check out my review of the season one DVD.
The premise of the show can best be described by the opening narration for each episode. First: "The Invaders, alien beings from a dying planet. Their destination: the Earth. Their purpose: to make it their world." And then: "It began with the landing of a craft from another galaxy. Now David Vincent knows that the Invaders are here, that they have taken human form. Somehow he must convince a disbelieving world that the nightmare has already begun."
Now, during its first full, and ultimately its last, season, David Vincent finally begins to find other people who have had encounters with aliens and are willing to stand up to them as he does. A new associate producer, David W. Rintells, changes things up within the context of the original series, and introduces a team of experts called "The Believers." This group is lead by Edgar Scoville, a millionaire, played by Kent Smith. It is this group that supports the struggles of David Vincent.
The series becomes more a bit more mature in this second season with the development of the Believers and more complex story lines. It really tries to add more depth and feel to the characters. Because of the technology at the time, budget constraints, and other considerations, there were not a lot of special effects and this forced the writers to be more creative and explore more complex topics.
Season two also includes more big name character actors like Gene Hackman, Carol Lynley, Diana Muldaur, Ed Asner, Suzanne Pleshette, and Ed Begley among many others, making for an enjoyable game of "spot the stars" while watching the episodes.
The Invaders: Season Two consists of 26 episodes on 7 DVDs. The original 1.33:1 aspect ratio is retained in this reproduction and although there is some stuff that looks like grit in spots, it is not bad for something that is from film that is over forty years old. While there is occasional softness in some of the close-ups, the image is generally sharp and clear.
The audio is Dolby Digital 2.0 mono and appears to be placed in the center channel and the quality has that same '60s sound to it which gives it a nostalgic feel. All of it sounds reasonable except the last episode which came across with hiss and some crackle.
The special features include optional introductions by Roy Thinnes which are brief summaries of the upcoming episode. There is an audio commentary by Alan Armer that contains memories of working on the show. This season contains a Roy Thinnes interview where he answers questions for a little over 30 minutes. This is similar to the interview that was on season one. There are also some previews for Star Trek season two, Jericho season one, and Twin Peaks.
Some of my favorites of this season include "Condition: Red," and its tie-in with the Russian cold war. In "The Saucer" I liked the details about the flying saucer and some of the film detail not usually found in other episodes. "The Enemy" is a great episode with lots of suspense. In "The Valley of Shadow," the characterizations are spot on and there's an interesting ending. "The Believers" has the beginning of the Scoville Group. And even with its sound problems, "Inquisition" is an intriguing episode.
Ultimately, the The Invaders was canceled because of two things. First and foremost was that the ratings fell. Many executives thought that creatively the show was done and so was primed for cancellation. The second factor was that the networks were also feeling pressure from Congress to reduce violent programming and The Invaders were targeted much like The Rat Patrol and The Wild, Wild West.
All in all, I think that The Invaders: Season Two is well worth the investment. It provides good entertainment and a look back at classic TV of the '60s, and so I recommend this series.
Season Two Episode Listing (1967)
1. Condition: Red
2. The Saucer
3. The Watchers
4. Valley of the Shadow
5. The Enemy
6. The Trial
7. The Spores
8. Dark Outpost
9. Summit Meeting – Part 1
10. Summit Meeting – Part 2
11. The Prophet
13. The Captive
14. The Believers
15. The Ransom
16. Task Force
17. The Possessed
19. The Pit
20. The Organization
21. The Peacemaker
22. The Vise
23. The Miracle
24. The Life Seekers
25. The Pursued