Lost in Space is a science fiction TV series created and produced by Irwin Allen, produced by 20th Century Fox Television, and broadcast on CBS. The show ran for three seasons, with 83 episodes airing between September 15, 1965 and March 6, 1968. The first season was shot with black and white film, the rest in color. In 1998 a film based on the series made its way to the box office.
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n 1997, the Earth suffers from overpopulation and natural resource depletion. Professor John Robinson (Guy Williams), his wife, Maureen (June Lockhart), their children, Judy (Marta Kristen), Penny (Angela Cartwright), Will (Billy Mumy), and their friend and pilot, Major Don West (Mark Goddard), are chosen to travel on the "Jupiter 2" to Alpha Centauri to search for a habitable planet for mankind to colonize.
After the Robinsons are placed in suspended animation, but before the launch, foreign agent Dr. Zachary Smith (Jonathan Harris) sneaks aboard on a sabotage mission. He reprograms the ship's robot to destroy the ship shortly after it leaves Earth. He becomes trapped during launch, however, and his extra weight throws the Jupiter 2 off course, causing it to encounter a meteor storm. The robot's rampage causes the ship to become lost.
The Robinsons are often placed in danger by Smith, who is by turns a villain or an indigent. In the second and third seasons, Smith's role assumes a less evil overtone - although he continues to display many character defects. In "The Time Merchant", Smith travels back in time to before the Jupiter 2 launch, changing his fate. He learns that without his weight altering the ship's course, it would be destroyed. In an act of redemption, Smith elects to remain on board, thus saving the Robinsons' lives.
* Doctor John Robinson: (Guy Williams) The expedition commander, a pilot, and the father of the Robinson children. He is an astrophysicist who also specializes in applied planetary geology.
* Doctor Maureen Robinson: (June Lockhart) John's biochemist wife. Her role in the series is often to prepare meals, tend the garden and help with light construction, while adding a voice of compassion. Her status as a doctor is mentioned only in the first episode.
* Major Don West : (Mark Goddard) The military pilot of the Jupiter 2, he is Smith's intemperate and intolerant adversary. His mutual romantic interest with Judy was not developed beyond the first few episodes. In the un-aired pilot, "Doctor Donald West" was a graduate student astrophysicist and expert in interplanetary geology, rather than a military man.
* Judy Robinson: (Marta Kristen) The oldest child, about 19 years old at the outset of the series. She planned a career in musical theater but went with her family instead.
* Penny Robinson: (Angela Cartwright) A 13-year-old, she loves animals and classical music. She acquires an alien pet she names Debbie (To viewers, quite obviously a chimpanzee wearing a fur hat). The chimp made one sound, "Bloop", and is sometimes remembered by that name. Penny, however, named the creature Debbie. Most of Penny's adventures have a fairy tale quality, underscoring her innocence.
* Will Robinson. (Billy Mumy) A 9-year-old child prodigy in electronics. Often, he is a friend to Smith when no one else is. Will is also the member of the family closest to the Robot.
* Doctor Zachary Smith: (Jonathan Harris) A specialist in environmental and intergalactic psychology, and an enemy agent, roles that are rarely mentioned after the initial episodes. His attempt to sabotage the mission strands him aboard the Jupiter 2 and results in its becoming lost. By the middle of the first season, the character becomes permanently established as a foolish, self-serving, impulsive, scheming coward. However, his maudlin ways and clever dialogue add a unique dimension. His best lines are in response to the "straight man" Robot.