Dark Star (1974)

From Television and Film Character Encyclopedia

A spaceship crew is sent on a long term mission to destroy rogue planets that might pose dangers to colonization.


Science Fiction


Lieutenant Doolittle - Brian Narelle

Sergeant Pinback - Dan O'Bannon

Boiler - Cal Kuniholm

Talby - Andreijah "Dre" Pahich

Voice of Talby - John Carpenter

Commander Powell - Joe Saunders

Computer - Barbara "Cookie" Knapp

Voice of Bomb 19 - Alan Sheretz

Voice of Bomb 20 - Adam Beckenbaugh

Mission Control - Miles Watkins

Alien - Nick Castle

Character thumbnails with links to profiles

Detailed Synopsis

The scoutship Dark Star receives a transmission from Mission Control telling them he received their last message and broadcast it to the public. He says that it took ten years to receive the last transmission and he was sorry to hear about the death of Commander Powell. He tells them their request for radiation shielding has been denied due to budget cuts, even after hearing about their radiation leak and then wishes them good luck. Sergeant Pinback tells Lieutenant Doolittle that he is trying to reach Talby as there is something wrong with the intercom. Pinback radios Bomb 19 and tells it that it will be dropped onto the nearby planet in sixty seconds. Bomb 19 is dropped onto the planet while the Dark Star flies away. Talby radios Doolittle to tell him Bomb 19 successfully destroyed the planet, but can't reach anyone. Computer notifies Doolittle that Bomb 19 destroyed the last unstable planet in the local solar system. Doolittle asks Boiler to give him another target and Boiler tells him of possible intelligent life in the Horsehead Nebula Sector. Pinback tells Doolittle he has picked up a signal for a red dwarf star not in the charts with eight planets and then gets upset with him when Doolittle doesn't name the new star. Boiler tells Doolittle of an unstable planet in the Veil Nebula and they had that way.

Doolittle leaves a ship's log saying where they are headed and how the ship is slowly falling apart and they have no toilet paper. The Computer tells the crew an asteroid storm is on a collision course with the ship. They turn on the ship's force field, but during the storm, the bomb bay systems are activated due to damage. Bomb 20 lowers from the ship and the Computer tells it to return to the bomb bay. Bomb 20 at first refuses to return until the Computer does a manual override. The Computer tells the crew there was a malfunction on the ship, but has yet to identify it. Doolittle, Pinback and Boiler go to the food storage room, which is their crew quarters ever since the quarters were blown up during the last asteroid storm. Boiler takes out a switchblade and puts his hand on a wooden table and stabs the knife between his fingers. Pinback tries to cheer up Boiler and Doolitle with prank shop toys, but neither of them show any appreciation. Doolittle leaves the room and plays a makeshift piano he made with bottles holding varying amounts of liquid. Doolittle brings breakfast to Talby and suggests he spend more time with the crew instead of being isolated. Talby tells Doolittle about the Phoenix Asteroids which circle the universe.

The Computer tells Pinback that it is time to feed the Alien they captured. He goes and tries to feed it cabbage, but it doesn't eat it. The Alien escapes from its enclosure and manages to escape inside the ship. Pinback goes after it and is almost killed when it lures him into the elevator shaft. The Alien touches a communication laser, causing a malfunction. The bomb bay opens up and Bomb 20 lowers once again from the bomb bay doors. The Computer tells it to return again and Bomb 20 returns once more. Pinback manages to escape the elevator shaft and gets an anesthetic gun. He shoots the Alien with it, causing it to deflate and die. Talby walks down to the computer room. While they are having dinner, Pinback tells Doolittle and Boiler of how he became a member of the mission and Doolittle and Boiler ask each other when the last time Pinback repeated the same story. Inside the computer room, Talby locates the malfunction and tells Doolittle the malfunction is in the communications laser. Pinback watches recordings from his diary that show him going crazy as time goes on. He then makes another entry saying how he doesn't like anyone else on the mission. The Computer tells the crew it has located the malfunction and it is communications laser 17. They arrive at the rogue planet and release the bomb bay door and Bomb 20 lowers from the belly of the ship. Talby tries to tell Doolittle about the laser malfunction, but Doolittle turns off his communication feed.

The communication laser turns on and as Talby is trying to repair it, he is hit with a blast and is knocked unconscious when he falls into the path of the laser. Pinback tries to release the bomb, but it fails to drop. Doolittle communicates with Bomb 20 and tells it to disarm, but it refuses. The Computer tells the crew the that she has initiated dampeners that will confine the effects of the bomb detonation to one mile. Doolittle goes to speak with the body of Powell, which is in deep freeze. He asks Powell for help after telling him that Bomb 20 won't drop and is about to explode. Powell tells Doolittle to teach Bomb 20 about phenomenology. Doolittle puts on his spacesuit and leaves the ship to speak with Bomb 20. He asks Bomb 20 how it knows that it truly exists. He then continues asking it questions. Boiler decides to grab the gun to shoot the support pins holding the bomb. Pinback tries to stop Boiler and they fight. Doolittle convinces Bomb 20 to return to the bomb bay. Talby wakes up, but is flushed out of the airlock into space when Pinback opens the emergency hatch. Doolittle flies after Talby. Pinback tells Bomb 20 to disarm, but it calls him false data. It then detonates itself, causing the ship to explode. Doolittle falls towards the atmosphere of the rogue planet, while Talby is pulled into the Phoenix Asteroids. A piece of debris floats by Doolittle and he uses it to surf into the planet's atmosphere and burns up.