This is a visual top nine list of some of my favorite sci-fi television, recurring, creature races. They may not have been on every week but they were always the threat in the background. I am trying to limit these to characters that were not rendered through stop-motion or computer generation. These are cats in suits, sweating and trying to emote through plastic, foam rubber or heavy make-up. Also, being a child of the 70’s this list will be populated with the earlier versions of these characters even if the modern versions may be technically more visually stunning. Some are written seriously while others are just silly and meant to be.
At first, this list was just an excuse to post about my number one choice. It was going to be all about the monstrous adversaries on the great series from yesteryear, but quickly grew into something else. The list excludes individual characters, even though individual character photos are used in some cases.
9. Golems from “Zyu Ranger” / A.K.A. Putty Patrollers from “Power Rangers”
Zyu Rangers‘ Golem Soldiers (ゴーレム兵 Gōremu Hei?) are the grunts and footsoldiers of the Bandora Gang, sculpted by Pleprechuan from clay and animated through being baked in the Neodora Machine (ネンドーラマシン, Neodōra Mashin) oven. ~ via http://powerrangers.wikia.com/wiki/Golem_Soldiers
8. The Gorillas from “Planet of the Apes”
Planet of the Apes is an American science fiction television series that aired on CBS in 1974. The series stars Roddy McDowall, Ron Harper, James Naughton, Mark Lenard and Booth Colman. It is based on the 1968 Planet of the Apes film and its sequels, which were inspired by the novel of the same name by Pierre Boulle. ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planet_of_the_Apes_(TV_series)
7. Terrians from “Earth 2”
Earth 2 is an American science fiction television series which aired on NBC from November 6, 1994 to June 4, 1995. The show was canceled after one season of 22 episodes. It follows the journey and settlement of a small expeditionary group called the Eden Project, with the intent to journey to an Earth-like planet called G889 in an attempt to find a cure to an illness called “the syndrome”. The series was created by Michael Duggan, Carol Flint, Mark Levin, and Billy Ray, produced by Amblin Entertainment and Universal Television, and filmed primarily in northern New Mexico around the Santa Fe area. The series’ music was composed by David Bergeaud, and the executive producers were Michael Duggan, Mark Levin, and Carol Flint. ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth_2_(TV_series)
6. The Wraith from “Stargate Atlantis”
Stargate Atlantis follows the present-day adventures of Lt. Colonel John Sheppard and his military team from Earth that, along with two dozen other teams, explore distant planets in the Pegasus Galaxy. They use an alien device known as a Stargate that was built millions of years ago by an advanced race of humans known as the Ancients. The expedition is based in the Lost City of Atlantis on the planet “Lantea”. The city was built millions of years ago and abandoned 10,000 years ago by the Ancients. Five to ten million years ago, due to a plague in the Milky Way Galaxy, they were forced to flee to the Pegasus Galaxy, and there they seeded life on hundreds of worlds as they had done to Earth in the Milky Way. After encountering a powerful enemy known as the Wraith and going to war with them for one hundred years, the Ancients ultimately lost and were forced to submerge their city beneath Lantea’s ocean, which, in the Stargate universe, is the source of the Greek myth of the Lost City of Atlantis. ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stargate_Atlantis
5. Vorlons from “Babylon 5”
Babylon 5 is set between the years 2257 and 2262, it depicts a future where Earth has sovereign states, and a unifying Earth government. Colonies within the solar system, and beyond, make up the Earth Alliance, and contact has been made with other spacefaring species. The ensemble cast portray alien ambassadorial staff and humans assigned to the 5-mile (8.0 km)-long Babylon 5 space station, a center for trade and diplomacy. Described as “one of the most complex programs on television”, the various story arcs drew upon the prophesies, religious zealotry, racial tensions, social pressures, and political rivalries which existed within each of their cultures, to create a contextual framework for the motivations and consequences of the protagonists’ actions. With a strong emphasis on character development set against a backdrop of conflicting ideologies on multiple levels, Straczynski wanted “to take an adult approach to SF, and attempt to do for television SF what Hill Street Blues did for cop shows.” ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylon_5
4. Klingons from “Star Trek”
Star Trek has been a cult phenomenon for decades. Fans of the franchise are called Trekkies or Trekkers. The franchise spans a wide range of spin-offs including games, figurines, novels, toys, and comics. Star Trek had a themed attraction in Las Vegas that opened in 1998 and closed in September 2008. At least two museum exhibits of props travel the world. The series has its own full-fledged constructed language, Klingon. Several parodies have been made of Star Trek. In addition, viewers have produced several fan productions. ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Trek
3. Cybermen from “Doctor Who”
Doctor Who is a British science-fiction television programme produced by the BBC from 1963 to the present day. The programme depicts the adventures of the Doctor, a Time Lord—a space and time-travelling humanoid alien. He explores the universe in his TARDIS, a sentient time-travelling space ship. Its exterior appears as a blue British police box, which was a common sight in Britain in 1963 when the series first aired. Accompanied by companions, the Doctor combats a variety of foes, while working to save civilisations and help people in need. ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doctor_Who
2. Cylons from “Battlestar Galactica”
Battlestar Galactica is an American science fiction franchise created by Glen A. Larson. The franchise began with the original television series in 1978 and was later followed by a short-run sequel series (Galactica 1980), a line of book adaptations, original novels, comic books, a board game, and video games. A re-imagined version of Battlestar Galactica aired as a two-part, three-hour miniseries developed by Ronald D. Moore and David Eick in 2003. That miniseries led to a weekly television series, which later aired up until 2009. A prequel series, Caprica, aired in 2010. A two-hour pilot for a second spin-off prequel series, Blood & Chrome, aired in 2013 though this did not lead to a series as originally planned. ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battlestar_Galactica
1. The Sleestak from “The Land of the Lost”
Land of the Lost (1974–1976) is a children’s adventure television series created (though uncredited) by David Gerrold and produced by Sid and Marty Krofft, who co-developed the series with Allan Foshko. During its original run, it was broadcast on the NBC television network. It later aired in daily syndication in the early 1980s as part of the “Krofft Superstars” package. In 1985, it returned to late Saturday mornings on CBS as a replacement for the canceled Pryor’s Place – also a Krofft production. It was later shown in reruns on the Sci Fi Channel in the 1990s. Reruns of this series now air Saturday mornings on Me-TV as well as online at anytime on their website. It has since become a cult classic and is now available on DVD. Krofft Productions remade the series in 1991, also titled Land of the Lost, and a big budget film adaptation was released in 2009. ~ via https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Land_of_the_Lost_(1974_TV_series)
The Sleestak! Yep, they’ll always be my number one creature race. I love this old show for its flavor and the memories that the episodes stir up. It isn’t the best show, by far, developed for television but it was wonderful for its time.