Failure To Launch

The Consumption

We’re all familiar with the idea of a pilot episode, the one-off test run of a series to see whether or not it could ever work as a television show. But what happens to the shows that never make it past that stage? Usually they’re cast aside and disappear from the public eye forever, doomed to fade into obscurity.

  • 1 hour 6 minutes
    508 - Defenders of Dynatron City

    In the midst of Turtle mania, surrounded by Street Sharks, Battletoads and Martian Biker Mice, one studio decided to do things backwards: What if we made the tie-in videogame first, and made the cartoon second?

    Unfortunately the game was a disaster, so obviously the adventures of Bullet-head Man, Horny Buzzsaw-for-legs Girl, Sentient Toolbox and uh... some other ones. They're a team, they fought crime, probably.

    Reviewers: James Ferris, Harry Brimage, Alex Malone Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    12 April 2020, 8:30 pm
  • 1 hour 30 minutes
    507 - Bermuda Triangle

    Wouldn't you know it, John doesn't spend enough time with his family! But that's ok, they're going on a long cruise, just the four of them. But oh no! The boat sank, they're drowning!

    But that's ok, they washed up on an island, with people and everything! The people tell them they've been there for decades and you can never leave, but that's ok! The beach is nice! Also one of the kids needs insulin and is running out, but that's ok! There's magic dolphins! That's ok! That's ok! That's ok That's ok That's okthat'sokthatsokthatsokthatsokthatsokthatsokthatsokthatsokthatsok

    S O S A O K S O S S O S A O K S O S S O S A O K S O S S O S A O K S O S

    Reviewers: James Ferris, David Shaw, Alex Malone Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    19 February 2020, 11:06 pm
  • 1 hour 31 minutes
    506 - Suburban Beat

    Our first Failure to Launch for 2020 is the super-1985 Suburban Beat, the story of 4 suburban housewives thrown together by circumstance (they wanted to) to solve the murder of their friend.

    I say friend, but to be honest they're kinda glib about the whole thing. This quickly changes, however, as the details of the murder become more and more serious, forcing them to come face to face with the dark underbelly of Middle America-

    I lied. They stay just as glib, but the rest of that stuff happens.

    Reviewers: James Ferris, David Shaw, Lisa Dibb, Alex Malone Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    5 February 2020, 7:00 pm
  • 1 hour 22 minutes
    505 - Creating Rem Lazar

    Two kids cuddle a shitty mannequin who turns into a man with a blue mullet. He avoids getting stabbed in 80s New York City while teaching the kids about centrist politics. None of them can sing, but they do and you can't stop them. This is Creating Rem Lazar, and it's madness.

    You can find Sarah and Michael's podcast, Sarah and Michael Save Christmas here, or find them on twitter at @meandmyeasel for Michael, or @why_in_the_heck for Sarah!

    Reviewers: James Ferris, Sarah Baggs, Michael Williams Soundboard: Lisa Dibb

    23 December 2019, 7:30 pm
  • 1 hour 48 minutes
    504 - Madame Sin

    This week we're looking at our oldest pilot ever, Madame Sin, a 1973 attempt to kinda do Bond on TV, but what if the villain was the protagonist and also Bette Davis?

    She's got everything: weird gadgets, a secret lair, underground lab filled with mad scientists, a delightfully camp second-in-command, even a plan to steal a nuclear submarine!

    The only thing she's missing is someone willing to tell her to stop adding steps to her plan, or maybe suggest she think about using that mind control device more often.

    Reviewers: James Ferris, David Shaw, Harry Brimage Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    8 December 2019, 2:58 am
  • 1 hour 49 minutes
    503 - The Owl

    This Failure to Launch covers The Owl, a trapped-between-eras vigilante hero who is both an 80s style down-and-dirty street justice thug and, in 90s style, named for a dumb bird.

    When The Owl comes up against rapping drug dealer Cool Ice (he has a henchman with a boombox on standby), no amount of carbombed daughters or late city busses can stop him getting shot repeatedly for justice. A quick lie down might be good though. Or a shower. Goddamn this guy really needs a shower.

    Reviewers: James Ferris, David Shaw, Alex Malone Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    24 November 2019, 8:20 am
  • 1 hour 10 minutes
    502 - Sniff

    It wouldn't be a season of Failure to Launch without a crimefighting dog, so here's Sniff, another pilot from the 1988 CBS Summer Playhouse (pls bring this back CBS it's been so bountiful.)

    Robert Wuhl, best known for being that reporter in most of Kim Basinger's scenes in Batman '89, is Sid Barrows, a reporter in most of the dog's scenes in this thing. Nominally he's here to solve crimes but as is trad the dog does most of the heavy lifting.

    Every crimefighting dog show needs a twist though, and Sniff's is... Sid's dad seems to live with him and do most of the homemaking? It's unconventional but also surprisingly charming. 4 stars.

    Reviewers: James Ferris, Harry Brimage, Lisa Dibb Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    Sniff on IMDB

    7 November 2019, 7:30 pm
  • 1 hour 19 minutes
    501 - Infiltrator

    Failure to Launch is BACK, with... essentially the same pilot we left you with.

    Scott Bakula* gets into an accident with a space probe,* and ends up with superpowers.* He has to fight a billionaire* with the help of a love interest.* This time though, instead of a son, he has... the Island... also the probe is inside him. Right up there.

    Two years later he'd escape Failed Pilot Island with Quantum Leap, but we're still here, sifting through the rubble for Billy Zane projects. Season 5!


    Reviewers: James Ferris, Harry Brimage, Alex Malone Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    23 October 2019, 10:55 pm
  • 1 hour 58 minutes
    432 - I-Man

    In this 'Christmas' edition of Failure to Launch, we examine I-Man, a Scott Bakula Sci-Fi vehicle in which he learns the meaning of Christma- wait, no, he inhales a mysterious gas from space.

    After inhaling it, he finds he has been turned into Jolly Old Saint Nicho- whoops nope he gets blown up and miraculously recovers, as he is now immortal.

    Actually, this pilot has nothing to do with Christmas really, but it does have laser guns and a truck that falls off a cliff for SO LONG, so there's that. Merry Christmas!

    Reviewers: James Ferris, Harry Brimage, Alex Malone Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    23 December 2018, 7:00 pm
  • 1 hour 41 minutes
    431 - M3K

    This week on FtL, we travelled back in time, then forward again, to look at a sexy, revamped version of the Three Musketeers. But these aren’t your grandma’s stogy old Musketeers, all 17th Century and French and shit. These bad boys (and girl! Fancy!) live in America in the year 2000, only… different.

    There’s no guns (or even, y’know, muskets), and instead of police there’s Musketeers. But also the Cardinal’s men, who are also the police? Plus there’s a Cardinal, and a King, who are at war while also being buddies, and uh…

    Apart from mobile phones and cars this is pretty much just the three musketeers.

    Reviewers: James Ferris, Harry Brimage, David Shaw Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    19 December 2018, 1:36 am
  • 1 hour 57 minutes
    430 - Power Cop

    This week in our 101st EPISODE EXTRAVAGANZA (whoops) we treat ourselves with a locally-shot action extravaganza: Irresistible Force, a.k.a. POWER COP.

    Detective Stone, who's too old for this shit (i.e. getting shot on a weekly basis) is thrown into a Die Hard Lite™ hostage situation with a brand new partner, rookie cop and all-round arse booter Charlotte "Charlie" Heller, played by 90s straight-to-video action star Cynthia Rothrock. There's an angry chief, a weiner kid, a by-the-book, pencil-pushing, city-hall-will-have-my-arse lieutenant, and even a surprise guest for us Aussies! What a way to celebrate 101 episodes of Failure to Launch! Certainly better than some Friends rip-off.

    Reviewers: James Ferris, Alex Malone, David Shaw Soundboard: Andrew Cherry

    29 November 2018, 7:00 pm
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