War of the Worlds (1990) – The Deadliest Disease, and Path of Lies

The battle for Earth wages on, in this week’s installment of the science fiction series, War of the Worlds. The Deadliest Disease opens this week’s pair of episodes. It was written by Carl Binder from a story by Wilson Coneybeare. It debuted on 12 February, 1990.

A fantastic, revolutionary ‘med cell’ (this actually sounds like nanobots being used for medical purposes, but that kind of tech talk may not have worked at the time) has been developed by military scientists, who are also connected to the invading morthren forces. The cell could stop countless diseases, but Team Blackwood fears that it could be weaponized (right cause the military was gonna play nice with it).

Suzanne (Lynda Mason Green), Harrison (Jared Martin) and Kincaid (Adrian Paul) are tasked with tracking down the med cell and destroy it before the aliens can get their hands on it.

Malzor (Denis Forest) wants it, not just for the weapon possibilities, but also to heal Mana (Catherine Disher) who is dying.

The episode takes into a special military unit as well as the city’s Chinatown, both of whom also seem tie ins to the med cell…

In other words, it tries to be a convoluted story, immersing us in the gritty reality of the new world, and not quite so clean looking as it was previously in The Pied Piper episode.  And to be honest, this aesthetic, mostly works for the show, consequently, they need to stick with it, the entire world needs to look like that, except for some fairly well off folks (who may or may not have negotiated with the morthren).

It looks better all cyberpunk a la Blade Runner.

But who will get the med cell?

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Path of Lies was written by Rick Schwartz and Nancy Ann Miller from a story by Schwartz. It first aired on 19 February, 1990.

The morthren delve into fake news this week, when they seemingly save the life of a business magnate, Samuels (Maurice E. Evans) simply in order to get access to his media holdings, a newspaper, which they plan to use for propaganda.

It’s a cool idea, and despite the fact that the episodes are set in Almost Tomorrow, the existence and impact of newspapers in this time would make sense. Not everyone would have access to computer networks, or other media sources, a newspaper would, theoretically, be able to reach more of the lower class, and destitute, which is where Team Blackwood seems to be hiding out.

Caught up in all of it is a photojournalist, Marc Traynor (David Ferry) who has photographs of a gun fight between Kincard, Harrison and a group of morthren.

Unfortunately, we don’t get to see the way the aliens would tell their story, as the episode follows the photojournalist and his story, as he learns the truth, and realizes how much danger the truth represents.

And we’re back to a world that doesn’t look like the rest of the series, and our heroes look a little out of place in it. Oh well.  But I was totally right about those well-off types, and conspiring with the morthren!!

The battle continues next week, with more from War of the Worlds: The Complete Series on DVD from Paramount Canada!

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