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Category:    Home > Reviews > Science Fiction > Comedy > TV > Quark: The Complete Series (Sony DVD)

Quark: The Complete Series (Sony DVD)


Picture: B-     Sound: B-    Extras: C-     Episodes: C-



Quark was a short-lived television series that ran between 1977-1978 featuring the adventures of a space-faring garbage man named Quark (played by Richard Benjamin) and his crew of misfits and malcontents.


I have fond memories of watching Quark as a seven or eight-year-old kid starved for any kind of science fiction or fantasy fix he could find on the somewhat barren television landscape of that era.  Most of those memories were erased in my re-watching of these episodes some three decades later.  Just about everything that Buck Henry did for the spy genre when he created Get Smart, he failed to do in realizing Quark.  From the canned laugh-track to the somewhat unenthusiastic performances of Richard Benjamin and the rest of the cast, Quark is a sci-fi dud with little to recommend it beyond the fact that it is a send-up of many of the genre's major tropes.


Poor special effects, sleepy performances, and marginal plots make these episodes a tough slog.  Benjamin does have his moments with an especially strong performance in episode two, "May The Source Be With You".  In it Quark gains amazing powers but has more than a bit of trouble using them.  There are also some genuinely funny moments in episode five's "Goodbye, Polumbus", wherein Quark and his crew indulge in some of their deepest fantasies.  However, most of the eight episode run is not very good.  Flat scripts, performances, and effects tend to produce lackluster results.


Picture and sound on the episodes are adequate, but do little to enhance the overall quality of the show.  Extras on the disc are non-existent, most likely because most of the principles involved have passed on or do not want to own up to their part in this sci-fi train wreck.  On sheer nostalgia, Quark may be worth a look, but be careful not to place too much stock in fond childhood memories.



-   Scott R. Pyle


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