Well, two months have passed and I figured it had been about 4 or 5 weeks since my last post. Today, I’m going to review some of the spaceships that populate the Space Angel series.
I really dig these ships – they not only fit together pretty well, but most seem like they could exist. Most of these ships are designed for vertical launch and landing on planets, and some can also land (and even launch) horizontally. None of the vessels is remotely close in size to something like Trek’s U.S.S. Enterprise … or even like Khan’s Botany Bay. The longest are +/- 125 feet in length. The space stations are much larger.
The “fighters” mostly seem to fire rockets from the nose area. One episode has the fighters of the Neptune squadron equipped with “megatomic” bombs – think planet busters. It’s worth remembering that Space Angel, like Star Trek, is primarily an analog for the world of the 1960’s. The United Planets is alternately like the United Nations or NATO, the Anthenians sometimes have a USSR feel to them, etc. If the 1960’s had atomic bombs that could destroy cities, then Space Angel has megatomic bombs that can destroy planets. You get the idea.
First and foremost is Scott McLeod’s ship, the Starduster. It appears to be a singular vessel, and more powerful than just about everyhing else in space. It has lasers that can fire perpendicularly to the vessel, from above and below the cockpit and rocket launchers fore and aft (the aft launcher is atop the tail fin).
It is also equipped with:
Gyro gravity and equializer (i.e. artificial gravity)
Atomic engines (i.e. fusion or fission)
Radar and scanner beams (more precise than radar)
A magnetic boom for towing things (deployed from a hatch below the cockpit)
A cooling ray (called the BRB ray)
A small hangar bay for the Dart, a smaller, faster ship
A shielded room for avoiding radiation
A storage room two compartments away from the atomic engines
Landing legs that extend from the wings and tail
The ship later carries the Dart II, which is “a megatomic engine with a seat strapped to it). It has 10 million pounds of thrust – for comparison, SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy has 3.4 million pounds of thrust.
Each of the planetary squadrons appears to use a different type of spaceship.
Neptune Squadron has dart-shaped fighters. They show up the most often in the series, usually under the command of O’Hara, an old friend/rival of Taurus. These ships are also launched from the Space Force Complex 1 (a.k.a. Defense Complex 1).
Space Force Complex 1 is one of my favorite designs. It is a collection of spheres, situated mostly vertically, with four sphere’s jutting out from the forward central sphere and rear engine module. The spheres are large enough to hold several space fighters. It is located in solar orbit between Earth and Mars and is under the control of Commander Selkirk.
Pluto Squadron has some interesting, almost fish-like vessels. These patrol vessels are armed with rockets. They are based at Complex Core.
Jupiter Squadron has heavy launch vehicles that launch from ramps. It also operates some of the space fighters used by Neptune Squadron.
All of these vessels show up in the episode “Rescue Mission”. It’s one of the more realistic episodes (and believe me, a few are real doozies).
To challenge the United Planets, the Anthenians have fighters of their own, and they are alien looking enough to be easily told from the human ships.
The most commonly seen station is Evening Star, commanded by Professor Mace, Crystal’s father. Evening Star orbits Earth. It has tubes from which the Starduster and other ships can be serviced and launched, an astronomical observatory and various sensors. It is called Earth Weather Station in one episode.
Another similarly sized station, called Complex Core, orbits Pluto. There is also a refueling station orbiting Jupiter.
In “Cosmic Combat”, an alien space station at least 300 years old is discovered 10.5 astro-leagues from Earth. It is run entirely by computers, and launches six drone fighters to protect itself. It’s also protected by an electro-magnetic field. When McLeod manages to disable it, it self-destructs.
Survey 2 is seen in “Rescue Mission” orbiting and studying the planet Prometheus. The planet has 5.5 gravities on its surface and neglible oxygen, requiring some fancy work to rescue the crew when they are forced to land. The survey vessel’s forward section can separate from the engine section in case of emergency.
Super Mariner is launched into the new frontier of Vector Five. Part of Project New Frontier, the episode uses the term galaxy when it should use the term star system, so Super Mariner is designed to explore star sysems along a vector from Sol as yet unexplored. Super Mariner uses +X plasma fuel, which somehow involves magnetism. It is clearly FTL or can travel close to light speed. Its pods have enough fuel to destroy a planet.
One episode involves the testing of an ion engine that should get them faster than light. It was originally tested by Eddie Colfax 25 years ago, but he disappeared. When Scott gets the new test vehicle up to speed, he discovers Eddie and brings him back – and discovers that Eddie didn’t age.
EX-47 is an explorer ship used by Donavan and Vanilla. Donavan was expelled from the Space Council 10 years ago. He plans to make people more efficient by ruling them with computers. He has a base on one of the moons of Jupiter.
The space hijackers of Queen Zorra and the General have black ships nicknamd “Bat Ships”. They are equipped with force rays and magnetic force fields than can disable another ship’s instruments and drag them through space. Queen Zorra’s troopes are really cool looking – remind me of those hooded dudes from that one episode of Jonny Quest.
X-45 is commanded by Commander Kelly. It has a mission to destroy meteors (using megatomic explosives) beween Venus and Mars that are a hazard to navigation. X-45 is equipped with space cannons. It gets from Earth to Mars in less than 10 minutes, which implies getting at least close to light speed.
The ships also shows up as a space freighter, also called Jupiter, carrying 6 tons of salt.
The Anthenians have “colonizer-class” ships that are 40 feet wide.
There are also ships called “meteor sweepers” that can survive solar flare storms.
Honestly – there are tons of great designs by Alex Toth in this series – you really should check them out. For a very cheap kid’s series, it punches way above its weight in the creativity department.