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Series / Logan's Run

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The one on the left is an android. Really.

After the success of the movie Logan's Run in 1976, some bright studio executives decided it would make a wonderful idea for a TV series — provided the sets, costumes, special effects, and shooting locations weren't too expensive.

Logan's Run (1977–78) was the result. Only 14 episodes were filmed, and only 12 of those were broadcast on CBS before the series was cancelled. The series included a number of differences from the movie; Logan and Jessica were now played by American actors for one note , while a new character, an emotional android named Rem (Donald Moffat), was added.



  • Adventure Towns: Pretty much the run-of-the-mill for most episodes.
  • Acceptable Feminine Goals: Jessica very much wanted to know who her mother was, and had a soft spot for children, implying part of her reason for running was to be a mother.
  • After the End: A nuclear war in 2119 destroyed human civilization. The survivors squirreled themselves away in various settlements around the world. The protagonists come from one such settlement, the City of Domes, exactly 200 years after the war.
  • A.I.-cronym: In "Man Out of Time", it is revealed that Rem is an acronym for Reclevite Entity Mobile.
  • Alien Invasion: Two of them are threatened, one in "The Collectors" and one in "Stargate". In both cases it takes some doing to thwart them, which averts Easily Thwarted Alien Invasion quite handily.
  • Badass Pacifist:
    • Jessica 6. She was a chick of the highest order, but her strong convictions and sheer will to live kept her going, and even convinced Logan, a respected Sandman, to defect.
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    • Logan becomes one too. He's quick with his fists and a fast draw, but after leaving the City of Domes, he avoids killing and seeks peaceful resolution to conflict. In fact, out of the three (him, Jessica and Rem), he's actually the most soft-spoken.
  • Bedlam House: In "Fear Factor", Logan, Jessica and Rem discover an insane asylum that has been operating continuously since before the nuclear holocaust in 2119. It is run by the Mad Scientist Dr. Rowan, who subjects the inmates to extremely invasive mind probes in order to rid them of all emotions. His goal is to create an emotionless army that will follow him unquestionably.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology:
    • In "The Collectors", one of the alien races captured by the Kasorlans cannot survive in Earth's atmosphere for more than two minutes as it is toxic to them. The atmosphere in their cell is equally toxic to humans.
    • In "Stargate", Timon says that the aliens were extremely tall and thin prior to assuming human form. They retain their extreme vulnerability to cold.
  • Bloodless Carnage: The movie showed the victims of Carousel exploding in midair. In the TV series, they just turned into purple crystals and disappeared. (This was likely due to the same network mandate against depictions of violence that led to the Stun setting on the Sandmen's guns used after a few early kills in the pilot episode.)
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: In "Carousel", Logan is struck with a dart containing a memory warp. He loses his memory of the past year and is convinced that he is still a loyal Runner-killing Sandman.
  • Broken Pedestal: In "The Judas Goat", Logan, Jessica and Rem meet the first successful Runner Matthew 12, who escaped from the City of Domes six years earlier. Jessica, who knew him very vaguely before his escape, tells him that he is an inspiration to the resistance because his example proved to them that the Sandmen's power was not absolute. However, Matthew has set himself up as the leader of a primitive group of people, treating them as if they were his personal slaves. They refer to him as "the Provider" since he was able to reactivate some of the disused computer technology in their settlement. Matthew forces them to patrol the area on a daily basis to ensure that Sandmen will not be able to find him. He later refuses to allow the Runners to leave as he is concerned that they will reveal his location to the Sandmen if they are captured.
  • Canon Foreigner:
    • Rem is the only major character in the series who wasn't in the movie (or the book).
    • The Council of Elders who secretly run the City of Domes were created for the series.
  • Cargo Cult: In "Man Out of Time", the tribe living in the ruins of David Eakins' Archive stronghold, the Sanctuary Project, worship the buildings, computers and artifacts contained therein and do not even know how to read.
  • The Collector: In "The Collectors", the Kasorlans travel from planet to planet and abduct two specimens belonging to the dominant species in order to determine whether the relevant planet is suitable for invasion at a later date.
  • Cool Car: In the pilot, Logan and Jessica find a solarcraft hidden away in the U.S. Capitol building soon after they escape from the City of Domes. The Maze Cars modified for exterior use by the Sandmen also qualify.
  • Crapsack World: The overall background.
  • Crapsaccharine World: The City of Domes, the community in "Half Life" and the android "mountain city" in the pilot.
  • Culture Police: In "Turnabout", all books except the holy texts are banned in Zidor.
  • Dark Secret: Everyone in the City of Domes believes they will be reincarnated if they end their lives at 30 in Carousel, and that knowing who your mother and father were would be weird. But the sordid truth is, Carousel just kills them, and normal childbearing is forbidden so as to strictly control the birth rate. As one of the secret Elders explained, no-one works and everyone consumes, so they have to get rid of them before they get old enough to wear down and become an even bigger drain on the city's resources.
  • Death by Adaptation: In "The Judas Goat", Logan, Jessica and Rem encounter Matthew 12, who takes the place of Ballard in the novel as the first successful Runner. He doesn't survive the episode. Ballard survived the first book but was killed in the sequel Logan's World.
  • Defector from Decadence: Logan and Jessica both.
  • Dutch Angle: In "Futurepast", several are used during Logan's nightmare about being forced to abandon Jessica.
  • Electronic Speech Impediment: In the pilot, the robot Siri repeatedly says "Cannot allow" after Logan shoots her with his Ray Gun.
  • Enemy Mine: In "Capture", Logan 5 and Francis 7 have to join forces and cooperate against the insane survivalist couple James and Irene Borden who begin hunting the two of them as well as Jessica.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: In "Capture", James Borden, who is hunting Logan and Francis, accidentally shoots his beloved wife Irene, who is hunting Jessica. Borden is devastated when she dies in his arms and blames the Sandmen.
  • Expy: Rem is a very human-like android, capable of expressing emotion, and even experiencing a form of arousal. Not unlike the android character in the earlier TV movie The Questor Tapes, which had been written by Gene Roddenberry as a TV series pilot. The Novelization of the TV movie was written by D.C. Fontana - who was the script editor on Logan's Run. A decade later, the same concept behind Questor and Rem was revived as Data on Star Trek: The Next Generation, a series created by Roddenberry and produced by Fontana.
  • Extinct in the Future: In "Futurepast", it is revealed that many bird species, including the white dove, are either extinct or critically endangered due to the radiation in the atmosphere after the nuclear holocaust in 2119.
  • Failed Future Forecast: In "Man Out of Time", the Soviet Union seemingly still existed in 2119 as a newspaper headline reads "Eastern Bloc Demands Time Travel Controls."
  • Failure Is the Only Option: If the heroes ever find the Runners' sanctuary, the show is over.
  • Fanservice:
    • Heather Menzies pulls off a minidress and no bra combo with aplomb week in week out. And as this article indicates, there was a fair bit of Male Gaze as well. Sent Up to Eleven in "Carousel" in which Jessica, as part of a disguise, ends up wearing an outfit that is somehow even skimpier than her usual minidress (closer, in fact, to the type of thing worn by the movie version of Jessica). The final episode of the series, "Stargate", is the only time Jessica's mode of dress is directly referenced (and lampshaded) when Logan cheekily jokes that, if it were to get cold, she'd be the first to know.
    • Numerous female guest stars also provided this, too, in particular Kim Cattrall and Adrienne Larussa.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: In "Turnabout", the people of Zidor's culture is based on various aspects of Islam and Islamic tradition. The settlement operates under what is essentially an extreme form of Sharia law, which is harshly administered by Asa. Furthermore, the women of Zidor are forced to cover their faces at all times with veils resembling niqabs. The fact that Zidor is a desert community means that it is an obvious stand-in for The Middle East. To that end, the desert clothing worn by Zidor guards is vaguely Arabic in style.
  • Friend or Idol Decision: In "Man Out of Time", David Eakins travels forward in time to 2319 in order to learn the cause of the impending nuclear war in his own time of December 2118 so that he can prevent it and save seven billion lives in the process. However, if he is successful, the City of Domes and all of the other surviving pockets of humanity in 2319 will cease to exist. Eakins is not troubled by this initially but it starts to bother him after he gets to know Logan, Jessica and Rem, ultimately considering them to be his friends. When he returns to his own time, he discovers that it was the United States' enemies learning of the existence of time travel that started the war.
  • Gentleman Snarker: Rem was more or less a repairman and majordomo for a swanky palace, so he's quite refined and well-mannered, but he is also amazingly sarcastic about the kind of trouble he and his new friends end up attracting.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In "Carousel", having regained his memory of the last year, Logan plans to reveal everything that he has seen outside the City of Domes to a full assembly of Carousel, knowing that the Sandmen will shoot him dead before he can finish. Jessica, Rem and the resistance manage to rescue him before he can do so.
  • Hitman with a Heart: By comparison to his sociopathic literary counterpart and the Jerk with a Heart of Gold played by Michael York, Gregory Harrison's Logan was a pleasant and well-mannered guy who happened to have a job killing those trying to escape state-ordered death. Also, unlike his movie and book counterparts, he was already having his doubts. He also expresses genuine regret at the lives he had taken, and in one episode it was confirmed that he often shot to miss when pursuing Runners.
  • Hollywood Satanism: In "Night Visitors", the Prince of Darkness worshiping ghosts Gavin, Marianne and Barton were looking for a Human Sacrifice in order to revive one of their number. Rem was out of the question, and Logan was too much a skeptic (and too good at fighting) for them to trap, but Jessica was fair game.
  • Human Aliens: Implied then subverted in "The Collectors" and "The Stargate". The antagonists LOOK like human beings but in both cases are revealed to be wearing or using disguises and/or body suits.
  • Human Popsicle: In "Crypt", Logan, Jessica and Rem discover a 22nd Century cryonics facility. A message recorded by Dr. Mildred Krim in March 2120 reveals that six people - the telekinetic Dexter Kim, the architect David Pera, the doctor Rachel Greenhill, the administrators Frederick Lyman, the roboticist Victoria Mackie and the genius Sylvia Reyna - were placed in suspended animation as they had contracted a plague in the aftermath of the nuclear holocaust. Although Krim and her team were able to find a cure, they did not survive long enough to administer it. As such, the six sleepers remained in suspended animation until they were revived by the Runners in 2319. The cure is contained in two vials, each containing enough for three people. However, as the Runners are about to revive them, an earthquake strikes and one of the vials is broken. It is therefore up to Logan, Jessica and Rem to decide which three deserve the cure based on their skills. The decision is taken out of their hands when Lyman and Mackie are murdered by Sylvia, who is revealed to be a lab technician who altered computer records and assumed the real Sylvia's identity so that she would have a chance to survive. Kim, Pera and Dr. Greenhill decide to return her to suspended animation, which thereby becomes her Cryo-Prison, and take the cure themselves.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: In "Capture", the bored, Crazy Survivalist husband and wife team James and Irene Borden made a habit of killing Runners that passed by their estate and have the keys mounted as trophies. They learned about Sandmen from these Runners. Longing for a greater challenge, James hunts Logan and Francis with a Ray Gun. After Jessica escapes from their custody, Irene begins hunting her with an antique 20th Century rifle.
  • Just a Machine: In "Crypt", the people taken out of suspended animation do not want Rem to be involved in the decision to determine which three of them will receive the cure to The Plague because he is an android and they do not trust his judgment. David Pera is particularly disdainful of Rem and makes numerous jokes at his expense. However, they eventually come to trust and respect him when he solves the murders of Frederick Lyman and Victoria Mackie. Pera even says that they might name a city after him.
  • Laser Blade: In "Turnabout", the people of Zidor use laser swords. The guard Gera gets into a laser swordfight with Francis.
  • Lights Off, Somebody Dies: In "Crypt", the lights flicker in the cryonics facility and Victoria Mackie goes to plug in the auxiliary generator in the corridor. The lights then go out fully. When they return, the others find Mackie lying dead in the corridor. Rem soon determines that Sylvia Reyna is the killer.
  • Literal Split Personality: In "Half Life", everyone in the Adventure Town are put through the Process which splits them into a peaceful version, called Positives, and a violent version, called Castoffs, on their sixth birthday. The Positives live in luxury in their city while the Castoffs are exiled to the surrounding area, where they are forced to eke out a meagre living.
  • Lost in the Maize: In "The Innocent", Logan, Jessica and Rem encounter Lisa, a psychokinetic young woman with nearly godlike powers and, when people threaten her or do things that make her unhappy she dispatches them to a dark barren negaspace to be rid of them. The good news is that if she wishes, she can bring them back.
  • Love Triangle: In "The Innocent", Lisa believes that one exists between herself, Logan and Jessica. She becomes infatuated with Logan as soon as she lays eyes on him because he is the first man other than her father whom she has ever met. Lisa mistakes these feelings for romantic love and becomes extremely jealous of Jessica. She uses her psychokinetic powers to banish Jessica to a sort of limbo in the hope that Logan will decide to stay with her. When Logan rejects her, she turns him over to Francis but the guilt that she feels means that she cannot go through with it.
  • Low Culture, High Tech: Seen quite often with medieval cultures and or tribal cultures using ray guns, force fields, et cetera et cetera.
  • Make It Look Like an Accident: In "Crypt", Rem discovers the body of Frederick Lyman in the cryonics facility's administration office. He had seemingly been crushed by a machine that fell on him as a result of an earthquake aftershock. However, Rem determines that it was murder as the cobwebs on the machine were fully intact. Had it been toppled by the aftershock, they would have torn. Lyman's skull was already crushed when he was placed under the machine. It turns out that the culprit was Sylvia Reyna.
  • Master of Illusion: In "The Collectors", the Kasorlans use a device called a memory pulse to turn Logan and Jessica's thoughts into reality as part of their plan to capture two human specimens to return to their planet. Almost as soon as Jessica expresses the hope that Sanctuary will be over the next hill, they find it. She later asks after her friend Martin, a Runner who left the City of Domes four years earlier, and he immediately enters the room. Jessica accepts it at face value but Logan is suspicious as everything is exactly how they imagined it would be. The Kasorlans attempt to fool Rem using images of Logan and Jessica but it does not work as his sensory equipment is able to distinguish between reality and illusion.
  • Master Race: In "Crypt", Dr. Rowan hopes to create a master race by instilling Logan's innate courage in his emotionless makeshift army. Logan tells him that he has read about a people who considered themselves a master race and that they planned to make the rest of the world their slaves or exterminate them.
  • Mind over Matter:
    • In "The Innocent", Lisa is telekinetic.
    • In "Crypt", Dexter Kim has the power of telekinesis.
  • Never Learned to Read: In "Man Out of Time", the tribe living in the ruins of the Sanctuary Project facility have no concept of what reading and writing are.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: In "Stargate", Timon's son and daughter were killed by two aliens who stole their identities.
  • Paranormal Episode: In "Night Visitors", Logan, Jessica and Rem discovered a house haunted by three ghosts, Gavin, Marianne and Barton, who worship Satan.
  • Polluted Wasteland: After the nuclear war in 2119, the world outside the City of Domes became like this. However, during the 200 years since the war, it had returned to normal (though the Council of Elders kept this from the city's inhabitants).
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Many of the Sandmen are this and to an extent, Francis 7 as well.
  • Purgatory and Limbo: In "Night Visitors", Gavin plans to sacrifice Jessica in order to release his wife's spirit from Limbo.
  • Ragnarök Proofing: There are an awful lot of buildings, houses, computers and other bits and bobs that are in surprisingly good shape for having been in the middle of nowhere for over two centuries.
  • La Résistance: Jessica was an active member of it back in the City of Domes, smuggling the condemned to the outside world.
  • The Paralyzer: Due to the network's restrictions on TV series violence, a "stun" setting was added to the Sandmen's guns. It fired blue stripes instead of the normal bunsen-burner flamegun effect.note  "The Judas Goat" is a notable aversion, however, as two characters are graphically (if bloodlessly) shot to death by the Sandmen.
  • Ridiculously Human Robots: Rem is an android who looks, moves, and acts identically to a human — even to the extent of becoming sexually aroused by the female android Ariana in "Futurepast". (He expressed said arousal by having sparks involuntarily pop out of his shoulder.) Despite his claims to not having any, he shows genuine emotion constantly.
  • Robot Buddy: Rem fits nearly every criteria other than being tall.
  • Ruins of the Modern Age: In the pilot, as in the film, Logan and Jessica discover the ruins of the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. shortly after leaving the City of Domes.
  • Running Gag: Rem's indignant responses to being called a robot (and his joy when someone properly calls him an android).
  • San Dimas Time: In "Man Out of Time", after traveling forward in time from December 2118 to 2319, David Eakins has only 22 hours to return home. Time passes within both eras at the same rate.
  • Scavenger World: Due to the post apocalyptic setting, many of the pockets of humanity have to get by living in the scraps of the leftovers of the dregs of a once very advanced world.
  • Schizo Tech: In the pilot, we see mooks on horseback wielding ray guns and in many episodes afterward we see this mix of futuristic weapons and darned near-medieval technology due to the world After the End being a Scavenger World.
  • Short Runner: The series only lasted 14 episodes.
  • Sick Captive Scam: In "Capture", Jessica is aware that Irene Borden is observing her through security cameras. She feigns collapsing so that Irene will come in and check on her. Jessica manages to escape when she does so.
  • Slipping a Mickey: In "Stargate", the aliens give Logan and Jessica drugged drinks to render them unconscious.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Francis was killed by Logan in the movie, but Logan and Jessica (and Rem) need someone to be chasing them in the series so Francis survives and pursues them obsessively.
  • Stable Time Loop: In "Man Out of Time", David Eakins created the Sanctuary Project in the hope of preserving humanity's knowledge as all signs indicate that a nuclear war is imminent. In December 2118, he uses his Time Machine to travel forward in time to 2319 in order to determine what caused the war. Eakins intends to return to his own time and use the information that he obtains to prevent it from ever happening. It turns out that the revelation that time travel was possible led to the outbreak of the war. Having realized that time travel could be used as a weapon, the United States' enemies, including the Eastern Bloc, launched a preemptive strike to ensure that it would never happen. The US responded in kind.
  • Stern Chase: Logan and Jessica are pursued by Francis 7 and his gang of Sandmen, who are determined to bring them back and wipe their memories. Francis 7 is doing this because, if he succeeds, he might just get a seat on the Council Of Elders who really runs the City of Domes, and thus be allowed to live past 30.
  • Stock Footage: The series reuses footage of the City of Domes and Carousel from the film in various episodes as well as the opening credits.
  • Super Breeding Program: In "The Innocent", Rem determines that Lisa's ancestors were test subjects in an experiment into the development of psychokinetic powers conducted by the US government. Her abilities allow her to defend herself from anyone who tries to enter the former test facility in which she lives.
  • Tamer and Chaster: Yes, even with Heather Menzies in a barely decent skirt. The original book had orgy houses, a thirteen year old prostitute coming onto the protagonist, LSD from vending machines, and a prison where the inmates reverted to cannibalism. No way in hell that would fly on network TV today, much less back in 1977.
  • Theme Naming: In "Man Out of Time", the members of tribe living in the ruins of the Sanctuary Project facility, a computer archive, all have names relating to computers or their operators. Examples include Analog, Binary and Lab Tech One.
  • They Look Like Us Now: In "Stargate", the aliens have a machine that allows them to assume the appearance of a given person. Everyone in the community except for Timon was subjected to it and died as a result. The early stage of the process was used on Logan and Jessica but they managed to kill their partially formed duplicates before it was completed.
  • Three Laws-Compliant: Rem is this. Doesn't prevent him from snarking up a storm about humans. He even has a moment of crisis in "The Judas Goat" when he realizes he may have broken the First Law and ended a human life.
  • Verbal Tic: Rem has a minor one of addressing friends as "my dear," such as "My dear Logan." Possibly a holdover from his programming as a palace majordomo.
  • Wandering the Earth: In their never-ending search for Sanctuary, Logan, Jessica, and Rem encounter a new isolated pocket of humanity every week.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: In "Futurepast", Rem and his fellow android Ariana admit that they do not understand the human emotion of love. In spite of this, however, they quickly develop feelings for each other. Ariana cries as Rem leaves. Since androids are supposedly incapable of producing tears, Rem attributes it to a malfunction caused by the beryllium that he used to repair her after she was shot by Francis.
    • Logan and, to a lesser extent, Jessica also appear to have difficulty figuring out the "L" word. In "Night Terrors," (which follows two rather harrowing episodes), both Logan and Jessica share a moment where Logan admits he's struggling to find the right words to explain how he's grown to feel about her. While in a previous episode, Jessica has admitted to a dream-image that she loves Logan, talking to him about her feelings in the waking world proves more difficult. Considering the expanded setting uses the word "love" the way we would use the term "hook-up," only with even less expectations for intimacy, the search for words feels appropriately heartfelt and awkward.
  • A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing: In "The Judas Goat", the Sandman Joseph 8 assumes the identity of the Runner Hal 14, an acquaintance of Jessica and a fellow member of La Résistance, using Magic Plastic Surgery. The Council of Elders order him to bring Logan and Jessica back to the City of Domes so that examples can be made of them. The faux Hal tells the two Runners that there is a full-scale rebellion brewing in the City and that their presence will inspire hundreds to rise up against the regime.
  • World War III: Earth was devastated by a nuclear war in 2119.
  • Worthless Yellow Rocks: In the pilot, Logan starts a fire using 200-year-old bills of various dominations and confidential papers that he found in the ruined Capitol Building.
  • Worthy Opponent: Francis 7 was Logan 5's best friend and now pursues him to bring him back alive to the city of Domes. Despite this Francis has measures he won't stoop to and is willing to co-operate when both their survival is at stake.
  • You Are Number 6: Logan 5, Jessica 6, Francis 7, etc. for all the citizens of the City of Domes. While the movie explained the reason behind the numbering, the series didn't beyond establishing that citizens didn't know their parents.
  • Your Mind Makes It Real: In "Futurepast", Ariana subjects Logan and Jessica to dream analysis. She tells Rem that the process has four levels and subjects can die if they reach D Level, "d" standing for "death." As the City of Domes' culture is obsessed with death, their dreams are particularly strong. Logan has nightmares about being forced to abandon Jessica while she dreams about being pursued by Death and her birth mother rejecting her. Had Rem and Ariana not managed to revive them, the sheer anxiety caused by their dreams would have killed them.