Ultraman vs. Odyssey

Okay, for those of you who didn't read my last entry (and who could blame you?) this blog is about pretending it isn't 2007. We're using our imaginations and pretending that it is 1972.

Technically, this isn't an historically-themed blog. See, because I'm going to try to write about the games from the perspective of the year they were released, it's more of an exercise in drooling self-delusion (Play along at home, kids!). We're going to treat these games as if we, meaning you and I, are seeing them for the first time. Most importantly, we haven't seen anything created after them.

For instance, Haunted House for the Magnavox Odyssey is the gosh-darned best graphical adventure game I've ever seen in my life for a home videogame system! This is an indisputable fact because we're in 1972 and we've never seen anything that post dates it. Okay? If you can stay in character for the comments section, that will be fun, too, but isn't required, (especially since I'm playing in someone else's site).

I'm also going to start by keeping my initial line of investigation school-yard simple:

Ultraman vs. Odyssey, who would cream whom in a fight?

Let's say that each day between school and dinner in fall of 1972, you have about a half-an-hour of TV time during which you may either watch Ultraman or play your brand spanking new Odyssey. Now, you love Ultraman! BUT, you are fascinated by this new TV manipulating toy called the Odyssey! What do you do?

(For you English teachers out there, I'm writing in "second person presumptuous" voice. Yes, I'm presuming that you really feel what I say you feel. Right, it's part of my charm. Go figure.)

Obviously, the day you get your Odyssey, you're going to use that half-hour to try to play it.

Screw Ultraman, you can watch that Nihon-jin sixties has-been tomorrow, if you still even feel like watching rubber suited grown-ups romp around on miniature landscapes. To you, at this stage in the world's evolution, from your perspective, here in 1972, the Odyssey IS the next necessary step on mankind's road to 3-D Smellivision. Either that, or it will be completely ungroovy and you'll go back to watching Ultraman again, real soon.

Anyway, next entry I'll talk about Table Tennis for the Odyssey by Magnavox.


Joined: 10/25/2006
Bill Loguidice wrote:Don
Bill Loguidice wrote:

Don Herbert is "Mr. Wizard". He had a series of science shows in the 60's and 70's where he would have children perform the experiments he would describe/assist them with. Fun stuff. He gained more noteriety in the early 80's with a series of science shorts on the Nickelodeon television network based on the same format back when that network was very different from what it is today. Actually, not too long ago, as part of a retro science revival, The Science Channel re-ran some of the original full length black and white shows of Mr. Wizard, not the color, newer Nickelodeon shorts. Mr. Wizard himself could be alternately friendly/playful and short/brash. Interesting mix.

Thanks for the info!


And to answer, Matt, I think the choice of Bill Cosby and Alan Alda were fine, since these companies wanted friendly personas/personalities to hawk their products. They were two beloved icons. I actually have great respect for Alan Alda post MASH, as I'm a huge fan of Scientific American on public television...

You are probably right about them being a good choice - after all its the parents that had to pay for these "educational machines" - and not the kids.
And the mentioned companies, especially Atari & TI, didn't exactly care for the computer geek.



Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.