The latter was an expensive major motion picture and forgot what was good about Thunderbirds by, somewhat remarkably, spending most of the time ignoring the Thunderbirds and sidelining the international rescuing aspect of the International Rescue organisation. Instead, Ben Kingsley arrived in a funny costume and, well, that was it. While it wasn’t exactly bad, it certainly didn’t work and, despite a modest budget by Hollywood standards, it lost lots of money (probably about $100 million after it’s worldwide cinema run and taking into account marketing / production costs and cinema distribution cuts).
Though destined for television, Captain Scarlet’s remake was also going to be expensive (about $1 million per episode) and produced using computer animation and design much better than we normally saw on television. Now the original show was about a dude who gets killed or, at least, horrifically injured in almost every episode. While you could get away with that kind of AWESOMENESS in the Sixties, you couldn’t in the Noughties. Brilliantly, Anderson set up a private finance venture to produce his new version. The show looked incredible, Scarlet still got killed or horrifically injured in at least half the episodes and the show was largely brilliant. Did I mention it looked incredible? Unfortunately, it got dumped on by ITV who waited a year, then tucked it away in a Saturday morning kid’s marathon show (they even missed out an episode here and there) and it, too, ended up losing money. Big, big shame. If they’d stuck it in Saturday evening prime-time slot, as the BBC did the same year with their Doctor Who reboot, maybe they’d had seen the same kind of immense success.
Nevertheless, let’s never forget the clearly passionate and brilliant work of the artists involved (though they should definitely have brought back some of Barry Gray’s iconic music). I really, really enjoyed it. If you are an action anime fan, it’ll certainly appeal to you. While the original Thunderbirds was Gerry Anderson’s best ever idea, both the old and new series of Captain Scarlet were his best ever work.
So here are two wallpapers for New Captain Scarlet.
You can buy the 1967 Captain Scarlet on DVD and the 2004 Captain Scarlet on DVD and both are well worth it. You can also buy the Thunderbirds movie on DVD but it’s not. The thought of a Blu-ray HD re-release of New Captain Scarlet is mouth-watering and I look forward to revisiting it.