So not that long ago, we did a podcast that was a Top 5 favorite robots. Sadly I think it was on the Random Nerdness podcast and that episode is gone now. Yes Justin Bieber has NOTHING to do with the post. Why is he in the title you ask? Because I can and I thought it was funny :).
Anywho, I thought I’d give a little history one one of my favorite robots of all time. Mister Robby the Robot or (Robbie) depending on someone point of view. The first tie I ever saw Robby the Robot was in Lost in Space the 1965 version not the 1998 film… I rather enjoyed the movie for what it was and nothing more. It was….. Lack of a better word, entertaining. I mean the film was given a Golden Raspberry Award nomination for Worst Remake or Sequel, but lost against the tied The Avengers, Godzilla and Psycho. So what is that saying right there?
Sorry bunny trail. Yes Robby the Robot, the first time I ever saw him was in Lost in Space and also in the Twilight Zone episode “Uncle Simon”. From there I found a movie call Forbidden Planet made in 1956 and wow. From there Robby the Robot became my favorite robot to date, well 2nd in line will be Johnny Five from Short Circuit. Oh Steve Guttenberg what happen to you? I believe he is still fighting the good fight for another Police Academy & Cocoon movie… Yeah anywho, Robby the Robot got his first start in Forbidden Planet and then went on to The Invisible Boy (1957) & My Little Margie, The Thin Man, Columbo, The Addams Family. Then Robby was in Lost in Space where he battles The Robot. At other times, Robby usually retained the moving parts inside his transparent dome, although the details of his “brain” and chest panel were sometimes altered; in an episode of The Man from U.N.C.L.E., only Robby’s head dome was used as part of a regeneration machine. Robby also appeared in the Mork & Mindy second season episode “Dr. Morkenstein”, this time representing a character called Chuck (voiced by actor Roddy McDowall) whom Mork befriends while working as a security guard in the science museum where Chuck is on display. Robby the Robot does make a cameo appearance in Gremlins( speaking of Gremlins. We’ll be doing a podcast on Eclectic Mayhem covering these movie and a few others the we grown up with and enjoyed. So please keep an eye out for updates and news! Till then here is the link to the podcast http://eclecticmayhem.libsyn.com/) ; he can be seen standing in the background and speaking some of his trademark lines. He was also in a TV spot for AT&T.
Did you know the name “Robbie the Robot” spelled with an “ie”, had appeared in a pulp magazine adventure The Fantastic Island in 1935. The name is used for a mechanical likeness of Doc Savage used to confuse foes. The name is also used in Isaac Asimov’s short story “Robbie” in 1940, about a first-generation robot designed to care for children. Robby the Robot is also 7-foot (2.1 m) tall robot whose “mouth” is a monochromatic blue light organ, synchronized to his synthetic voice, its band of curved tubes located directly below his transparent conical “face” dome.
List of appearances:
- Forbidden Planet (1956)
- The Invisible Boy (1957)
- The Thin Man (1958) – season 1 episode “Robot Client”, first aired 28 February 1958
- The Gale Storm Show (1958) – season 3 episode “Robot from Inner Space”, first aired 13 December 1958
- The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis (1963) – season 4 episode “Beethoven, Presley, and Me”, first aired 13 March 1963
- The Twilight Zone
- Episode “One for the Angels” (1959; as a tinplate battery operated toy)
- Episode “The Brain Center at Whipple’s” (1963)
- Episode “Uncle Simon” (1964)
- Hazel (1962) – season 2 episode “Rosie’s Contract”, first aired 27 September 1962
- The Addams Family in the episode “Lurch’s Little Helper” aired 18 March 1966
- The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (1966)
- Lost in Space (1966 and 1967) – in two episodes as two different characters (in “War of the Robots” as a robotoid)
- Ultraseven (1967) – A race of Robots called the ‘U-Toms’ bear Robby’s likeness in one episode.
- The Monkees (1966–1968) – one episode
- The Banana Splits Adventure Hour (1968 and 1970 “The Coronation of Bakaar”) – recurring appearance as a maid named “Mildred the Robot”; does not have glass dome
- Columbo: Mind Over Mayhem – as “MM7” (1974)
- Hollywood Boulevard (1976)
- Ark II (1976)
- Holmes & Yo-Yo (1976)
- Music Machine (1977) – a K-tel compilation LP, photographs featured on both the front and back of the cover. In the commercial for the LP, Robbie dances to some of the album’s songs.
- Project U.F.O. (1978) – season 1 episode “Sighting 4010: The Waterford Incident”
- Television commercial for Starlog Magazine (1978)
- The New Adventures of Wonder Woman (1979) – season 3 episode “Spaced Out”, as the master of ceremonies at a science fiction convention
- Mork & Mindy (1979) – season 2 episode “Dr. Morkenstein”, as a robot in a museum named Chuck who becomes friends with Mork
- Space Academy (1979) – episode “My Favorite Marcia”
- Pink Lady (1980) – Episode 5, a brief cameo.
- Charmin Television commercial (1981) – as an assistant to Mr. Whipple, named Squeezak, repeating the phrase “Don’t squeeze Charmin”.
- Night Stalker video game (1982) – featured in the print advertising for the Mattel video game for the IBM and Mac
- The Love Boat – episode “Programmed for Love”
- Gremlins (1984)
- Cherry 2000 (1987)
- Earth Girls Are Easy (1988)
- Star Kid (1998) – footage from Lost in Space featuring Robby is shown on a TV
- Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003)
- Stacked (2005) – as the Nightmare NASA Robot
- Television commercial for AT&T (2006) – with WOPR, KITT, and Rosie the Robot Maid
- Television commercial for General Electric (2012) – with KITT and other robots
- Season 8 Episode 2 of The Big Bang Theory (2014) – with other movie props
I know there are talks about them doing a Forbidden Planet remake or reboot, kinda one in the same really. I also heard around the rumor mill that Short Circuit remake as well. I really think they are running out of ideas and or looking to make a quick buck.