The Man from Atlantis

Mark Harris by yours truly from 1977.

“The Man from Atlantis” was a science fiction television series that premiered on NBC in 1977. The show starred Patrick Duffy as the titular character, a man with extraordinary abilities who had been raised by dolphins and was the last survivor of the lost city of Atlantis.

The series was created by Herbert F. Solow and produced by Robert Justman, both of whom had worked on the original “Star Trek” series. The show was initially a hit with audiences, and its first season was successful in the ratings. However, its popularity began to decline in the second season, and the show was ultimately canceled after only 13 episodes.

There were several reasons for the decline in popularity of “The Man from Atlantis.” One was the show’s relatively low budget, which led to some lackluster special effects and set designs. Another was the departure of some key cast members, including Belinda Montgomery, who played Dr. Elizabeth Merrill, one of the show’s main characters.

In addition, the show struggled to maintain a consistent tone, with some episodes being more serious and others being campier. This inconsistency, coupled with the show’s declining ratings, led NBC to cancel the series after just two seasons.

Despite its relatively short run, “The Man from Atlantis” remains a cult favorite among science fiction fans. The show’s unique premise and memorable characters have earned it a dedicated following, and its influence can be seen in other science fiction shows and films that followed in its wake.

“The Man from Atlantis” did have some merchandise released during its brief run, though it was not as extensive as some other popular shows of the time. Some of the merchandise that was released includes:

  1. Comic books: A comic book series based on the show was published by Marvel Comics in 1978. The series ran for seven issues and featured original stories as well as adaptations of episodes from the show.
  2. Novelizations: Several novelizations of episodes from the show were published, including “The Death Scouts” and “Killer Spores.”
  3. Soundtrack: A soundtrack album featuring music from the show was released in 1978. The album included the show’s theme song as well as other original music.
  4. Miscellaneous puzzles, and a lunch box.

There was a line of toys being developed for the show by Kenner. but they never went beyond the prototype stage. Perhaps if the show saw a second season, we would be talking about all the wonderful hours we spent in the tub with the MfA toys, but alas it was never to be.

Overall, “The Man from Atlantis” merchandise was relatively limited, especially compared to some other popular shows of the time. However, the show’s unique premise and dedicated fanbase have kept it in the public consciousness, and there is still some merchandise available for collectors today.

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