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Series / Salvage 1

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Harry Broderick and The Vulture

"Once Upon a Time...a junkman had a dream..."I wanna build a spaceship, go to the moon, salvage all the junk that's up there, sell it." So he put together a team: An ex-astronaut, and a fuel expert. They built a spaceship, and they went to the moon. Who knows what they'll do next?"

Salvage 1 is an American science fiction series that aired for 16 episodes (of the 20 produced) on ABC during 1979. The pilot film, Salvage, aired on January 20, 1979, to high ratings. The movie starred Andy Griffith as junkyard owner Harry Broderick, Joel Higgins as Addison "Skip" Carmichael and Trish Stewart as NASA fuel expert Melanie "Mel" Slozar.

Salvage 1 contains examples of:

  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch, and Yeti: The first episode (after the pilot) had Harry and his crew encountering a Yeti like ape on a lost island, which seems initially harmless, until an unfortunate misunderstanding causes it to go viral...
  • Cool Starship: The Vulture.
  • Crazy Enough to Work: Go to the moon to salvage abandoned pieces of tech by means of a homemade rocket, powered by homemade explodium, driven by a NASA reject. Yeah.
  • Down in the Dumps
  • Is This Thing Still On?: In "Salvage", Skip Carmichael suggests to Mel Slozar a way they might wile away the time on their flight to the moon. When she demurs, he asks if it would help if he closed the blind. Their Mission Control then comes over the radio saying "No, but you might want to turn off your microphone".
  • MacGyvering: The Vulture, to some extent.
  • Made-for-TV Movie / Compilation Movie: In addition to the Two Hour Pilot movie, the two part episodes "Golden Orbit" and "Hard Water" were combined in the late eighties and aired as "movies" on CBS Late Night.
  • Once Upon a Time:
    Narrator: [opening narration] Once upon a time, a junkman had a dream.
  • Plot-Sensitive Items: Monohydrazine was used to solve any number of problems, from fueling a rocket to restarting oil wells.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The cast is pretty much this.
  • Reentry Scare: In the pilot episode, after the astronauts are returning to the Earth from the Moon, they're unconscious (and thus unable to control their ship) as they enter the Earth's atmosphere. The government is going to shoot them down unless they can hear "voices", indicating that they're alive and able to land it safely.
  • Unobtainium: Mel bestows upon our heroes a special fuel she calls "monohydrazine," which is so efficient that their space rocket can burn its engines all the way to the moon and back, despite having almost no room on board for fuel storage. While hydrazine is used as a rocket fuel, it isn't nearly as efficient as suggested. In addition, it is very, very toxic.
  • Zero-G Spot: Skip suggests the idea to Mel in Salvage as a way to kill time on the flight to the moon.