The Catacombs Catacombs International Guide
Finland

Space: 1999 in Finland

Thanks to Jyri Volkoff, Kai Baer and Erkki Rautio

1970s Finland

In the mid-1970s, Finland had three national TV stations. The state broadcaster, YLE, was closely based on the BBC in the UK, and had two TV channels, YLE 1 and YLE 2. The third advertising-based station was called MTV (Mainos-TV, "Commercial TV", not related to the American music channel). There were only two TV channels, with YLE 1 and YLE 2 releasing certain hours every day to MTV's programming.

YLE 2 had an annual shut down during July, leaving only YLE 1 transmitting for one month. Colour transmission had started in 1968, but the majority of the audience still watched in black and white.

Finnish TV, especially MTV, imported a lot of American, UK and other European series, as well as TV from the neighbouring Soviet Union. Stingray had been shown on MTV in 1965, and Thunderbirds on YLE 2 in 1966. UFO did not reach Finland, although Star Trek did, briefly, in 1974. While foreign shows were popular, many were criticised for violence, and the politically controlled YLE programme council banned several series.

Avaruusasema Alfa

The series was titled Avaruusasema Alfa (literally "Space-station Alpha") in Finland. It was broadcast on Finland's MTV in 1976. Episodes were subtitled, not dubbed. They showed twelve episodes of season one. In July and August, it was shown on the YLE 1 channel on Saturday evenings, with varying timeslots. From mid-August, it switched to the YLE 2 channel on Tuesday in a stable 7:15pm slot, alternating every other week with Six Million Dollar Man.

An association of the Finnish kindergarten teachers campaigned against the show, considering it too terrifying for Finnish children. The YLE programme council then banned the show at the end of 1976.

In the middle of 1978, MTV tried again with eight episodes of Year 2 (skipping the opening episode, The Metamorph). A later Saturday timeslot, and the revamped format didn't help assuage the critics. In July the programme council chairman Matti Isoviita was quoted as saying he "wished that nothing as stupid as Space Station Alpha would ever need to seen again. That is what program manager Tauno Aijala promised, that there will be no more episodes in this Alpha series."

1980s and later

In the beginning of the 1980s a new cable TV channel in the capital, Helsinki-Televisio, showed the rest of the series. A few episodes never aired (including The Bringers Of Wonder)

Local cable channel Tampere-TV ran the show in 1997. The series was re-shown on TVTV! in 2000 and again in 2001, and on the MTV3 Sci-Fi cable channel in 2008.

Merchandising

Merchandising included the Airfix model kits, the dolls (sold in just one toystore in Turku) and Monty bubblegum cards. There were no articles or any other media coverage whatsoever except for the few tv-magazines telling what episode they were going to show.

Alien Attack was released as Hyökkäys on VHS by Calsor Video. In 2008, Future Film released series 1 in two DVD box sets of 12 episodes each (titled Moon base Alpha), using the Chantrell cover art from Destination Moonbase Alpha.

In 2010, Leikkilinna, the Finnish Toy Museum in Espoo, Finland, mounted an exhibition of space toys. The exhibition included a number of Space: 1999 items including Mattel dolls, Azrak-Hamway, LJN, Dinky plus some View-Masters and puzzles. Pictured here is a display featuring the rare Mattel Zython figure along with two Star Maidens dolls, Liz and Guard, plus other space-related vintage toys. Thanks to Arto Haarala

Order

Date

Finnish Title

Translation

Original Title

Station

1

Sat 10 July 1976 9:50 PM

Maasta irti

Launch

Breakaway

MTV (YLE 1)

2

Sat 24 July 1976 7:35 PM

Inhimillinen kone

Human machine

The Infernal Machine

MTV (YLE 1)

3

Sat 31 July 1976 7:55 PM

Avaruusaivot

Space Brain

Space Brain

MTV (YLE 1)

4

Sat 07 August 1976 9:50 PM

Valoilmiö

Light phenomenon

Ring Around The Moon

MTV (YLE 1)

5

Sat 14 August 1976 9:50 PM

Musta aurinko

Black sun

Black Sun

MTV (YLE 1)

6

Tue 17 August 1976 7:15 PM

Ikuisuuden loppu

The End of Eternity

End Of Eternity

MTV (YLE 2)

7

Tue 31 August 1976 7:15 PM

Kuollut planeetta

A dead planet

Death's Other Dominion

MTV (YLE 2)

8

Tue 14 September 1976 7:15 PM

Arkadian testamentti

The Arkadian testament

The Testament Of Arkadia

MTV (YLE 2)

9

Tue 28 September 1976 7:15 PM

Viimeinen vihollinen

The last enemy

The Last Enemy

MTV (YLE 2)

10

Tue 12 October 1976 7:15 PM

Puuttuva rengas

Missing Link

Missing Link

MTV (YLE 2)

11

Tue 26 October 1976 7:15 PM

Kaksi kuuta

Two moons

Another Time, Another Place

MTV (YLE 2)

12

Tue 9 November 1976 7:15 PM

Takaisin Maahan

Back to Earth

Earthbound

MTV (YLE 2)

No episodes for one and a half years.

Order

Date

Finnish Title

Translation

Original Title

Station

2.1

Sat 17 June 1978 9:20 PM

Vihan tunne

Feeling angry

One Moment Of Humanity

MTV (YLE 1)

2.2

Sat 1 July 1978 9:20 PM

Harhalasku

Bright landing

Journey To Where

MTV (YLE 1)

2.3

Sat 8 July 1978 9:20 PM

Paluu paratiisiin

Return to paradise

New Adam, New Eve

MTV (YLE 1)

2.4

Sat 15 July 1978 9:20 PM

Kimaltava vaara

Glittering danger

All That Glisters

MTV (YLE 1)

2.5

Sat 22 July 1978 9:20 PM

Avaruuden kauppias

A space merchant

The Taybor

MTV (YLE 1)

2.6

Sat 29 July 1978 9:20 PM

Pakolaiset

Refugees

The Exiles

MTV (YLE 1)

2.7

Sat 5 August 1978 9:20 PM

Aivo

Cerebral

Brian The Brain

MTV (YLE 1)

2.8

Sat 12 August 1978 9:20 PM

Tuhon siemen

Damaged seed

Seed Of Destruction

MTV (YLE 1)

Download Calendar

Thanks to Jyri Volkoff and Kai Baer; some information from Erkki Rautio's excellent Phinnweb site