In 1983 an obscure animation company located in the Beaumont Heights area placed all of their bets on a television series called 'Westwood 7'. It would be an action-adventure title, geared towards adolescent males, combining the science fiction and fantasy elements that were popular at the time with the dramatic elements of an after school special in the hopes of instilling a sense of social consciousness into its young viewers. Twenty-six episodes were scripted, but only twelve were actually shot. These episodes were not broadcast outside of the Beaumont Heights area, as they had been used as one of the flagship titles of the ill-fated Beaumont Heights Closed Circuit Inner Cast Network [Beaucast] - which, even during its heyday, boasted an unceremoniously low 1,753 subscribers.
Since this occurred prior to the home video boom that was about to reshape the suburban landscape, very few episodes of this ultra-obscure series have ever been seen more than once. These matters were only exacerbated by the untimely death of Jacob 'Jake' Beurgoinoinne, the creato0r of the series, in a fire that took not only his life, but destroyed all of the precious master copies of the series.
I was fourteen years old at the time of original broadcast and had no idea of how lucky I would be to have viewed all thirteen episodes of that show. I had even made three audio tape copies of the last three episodes, and plan on including the transcripts here. Over the years I have fruitlessly tired to contact subscribers of the Beaucast Network in hopes that one of them may have recorded an episode.
I have been unlucky in this enterprise. The only thing I was able to recover was a thirty six second clip of the opening title sequence of the show, which a Mrs. Joy Rogers had inadvertently recorded after the live simulcast of her daughter's middle school dance recital, which had aired immediately prior to 'Westwood 7'.
I would like to thank her immensely for allowing me to borrow that recording in order to extract that short clip. It can be viewed here [Coming Soon], along with the images I have redrawn, both from memory and the copious notes I took from the actual series during its original broadcast. I have also included a guide to the first thirteen episodes, along with a truncated abstract of what the final half of that ill-fated first season would have been like had Beaucast not shut down after its initial six months. For that abstract I would like to thank Mr. Martin Mc Millan, one of the collaborating writers on the series, for his patience and enthusiasm for this tribute project. He also gave me the piece of original artwork, one of the few pieces to survive, that may also be viewed here [Coming Soon].
My hope for this tribute is to pay my respects to a series that helped to not only influence my artistic sensibilities [which may also be viewed here - Coming Soon] but also my sense of justice and honor. It is with a heavy heart that I can only offer up these scraps of what I feel was possibly the greatest animated television series of all time.
In the year 2082, the planet earth had finally overcome its problems of pollution and overpopulation and was a place of lush vegetation and futuristic machines, a place where technology and nature had finally come together to wipe out both natural and manmade disaster. But all of this changed when the tyrannical Sra-es [pronounced Srays], a being of birdlike robotic pillagers entered the earth's atmosphere from years of travel in deep space. Fortunately for the inhabitants of the earth, the space princess Loraine had appeared just days prior to the invasion force, hoping to warn earth of the impending danger. No one, however, would listen to her, no one, that is, but the enigmatic Moon Wolf and his trusted companion Slow Poke Pochanos, an animal-robot hybrid whose unlimited strength was matched only by his enormous heart.
Together with Loraine they retreated back to Moon Wolf's lair on the dark side of Earth's sole satellite and began to plot how they would take the earth back from the invasion forces.
The enigmatic Scientist-Adventurer Hero of the show. When we are introduced to Moon Wolf he has given up life in the city and is living in the wild, trying to perfect his environmentally sound animal-machine hybrids. Throughout the first twelve episodes it is made clear that Moon Wolf has some sort of past connection to the newfound prosperity of the earth - but it is never disclosed, although all indications prove that it would have been had the show run its fully planned season. Moon Wolf lives inside his all-terrain spaceship the Westwood, named for the beautiful forest that he was unable to save prior to the earth revitalization project.
Moon Wolf is a handsome man, fine featured and pale, with a shock of jet black hair that protrudes from his head like the horns of a feral animal. He wears the uniform of the enviro-task force, black leather pants and shirt with a long white lab coat. His weapon of choice is his 'Luna Pistol' a devastating weapon that gets its energy from the moon itself.
Moon Wolf wears a full moon medallion around his neck with the number one engraved upon it.
Slow Poke Pochanos
Slow Poke Pochanos, a.k.a. Pokey by his close friends, is hardly his namesake. A large barrel-chested animal-machine hybrid with a heart of gold. Slow Poke is found by Moon Wolf in the Westwood forest, the sole survivor of an early sra-'es attack that decimates all the inhabitants of his village.
Slow Poke has long sharp teeth and catlike eyes on a simian face, he wears a suit of tough leather armor and carries a large axe on his belt.
Slow Poke lives abouard the Westwood with Moon Wolf, and wears a black arm-band with the numeral two on it.
Princess Laraine is the beatiful blue skinned heir to the throne of the lost planet Ranstar. She comes to earth to warn of the coming invasion force of the sra-es accompanied by her body guard Dan-Tinian. When she arrives she is imprisoned by the local earth government but is rescued by Pro Thunder when it becomes clear that her knowledge is the only thing that can stop the human race from complete annihilation.
Laraine has large insect-like eyes and dark blue afro-natural hair. She is an excellent dancer and is able to use this to her advantage as she is able to couple it with deadly skill to her swordsmanship. Laraine has the rear quarters of the Westwood, but is always under the watchful eyes of Dan-Tinian. The Princess wears the number three on her abdomen, stitched into her battle dress as if it were the fasihion of the day.
Dan-Tinian was created by the warrior priests of Ranstar to aid the princess Laraine in her quest to rescue the earth. He stands seven feet tall and rivals only Slow Poke Pochanos when it comes to his foreboding demeanor.
A being of few words, it is unclear whether Dan-Tinian is a man or a machine, or a combination of both. He wears tight metal armor that appears fused to the blue flesh benetah. His eyes are dark and narrow and are almost never visible within the recesses of his battle helmet. He has the number four written in black on the center of his forehead.
Pro thunder is the fraternal twin brother of Moon Wolf, and yet is almost his complete opposite. Where Moon Wolf is calm, responsible and thoughtful, Pro Thunder is tense, irresponsible and hot-headed.
He makes his living as a thrill-seeking professional skiier and gun-for-hire. When we are introduced to him he is breaking Princess Laraine out of prison when he feels that his brother Moon Wolf is taking too much time deliberating over his next move.
Episode One: Touchdown
In a quiet suburb [looking suspiciously like a well-known Beaumont Heigths neighborhood [see accompanying photographs of Jake Beuorgenoinnes childhood home - Coming Soon]] a father and son are enjoying a morning constitutinal at the neighboring school football feild when a large shadow is suddenl7y cast over them. They stand dumbfoundedly gaping up into the sky as the first Sra'es jumpships begin their descent to earth. They begin to run but we do not learn of theri fate as the screen goes black
In a picaresque forest somewhere in North America, Slow Poke Pochanos is gathering wood for the coming winter. He is making devastating use of his electro-axe and is cutting ten times the amount of wood as the man alongside him, Moon Wolf. They joke with each other joyously about the competition when they are suddenly iterupted by a distress call from analyzer.
The camera pans up and we see the Westwood 7 for the first time. It is a huge space ship with a large dome and seven tentacle like appendages surrounding it. It almost looks like some sort of robotic jellyfish.
Moon Wolf and Pokey make there way to the bridge of the ship where analyzer is busily decoding a message from space. The message is from a princess laraine and she is warning of a mysterious attack that will arrive shortly. Moon Wolf has analyzer pinpoit her coordinates and they launch the ship immediately, leaving the fire wood they have just cut in the middle of the clearing, smouldering from the heat of the engines.
Moon Wolf and Pokey leave the ship in their separate vehicles and fly out to meet the space princess, but when they get to her coordinates they find that the government has beaten them to her and are taking her into custody.
Meanwhile, on a mountain even further north, Pro Thunder, Moon Wolf's twin brother, is preparing to beat his world record for ski jumping. He is surrounded by television cameras and thousands of fans As he races down the huge jump ramp his numbered medallion begins to beep. He chastises analyzer for bothering him during his jump but the robot tells him how important this is. Pro Thunder goes ahead with the jump anyway, beating his world record, but has his vehicle, flying through the air to meet him, pick him up before his skis touch the ground. The cameraman stare into the sky after him dumbfoundedly as he vanishes.
Moon Wolf debriefs Pro Thunder inside the Westwood 7. When suddenly hutch leader Word appears on the large command screen. He tells Moon Wolf that he needn't worry about the message he recieved earlier - the matter of the space princess is being looked into. Moon Wolf doesn't like this, but Pro Thunder likes it even less, smelling a rat he jumps into his vehicle and detaches from the Westwood 7 before Moon Wolf or Poeky can stop him.
Pro Thunder appears on a hill overlooking the federal prison where the space princess and her body guard are being detained. Inside his cell., Dan-Tinian is stands at attention, waiting for the word to come from Princess Laraine to break her out of the prison. however, no sooner does he hear her muffled cry for help does he find out that he is being held in some sort of field which stunts his powers. He can do nothing but wait.
The princess is being led down a corridor by armed guards. They begin to interrogate her when suddenly pro thunder comes crashing through the window on his skis. In midair, the skis suddenly shift up and onto his back, and his ski poles become fighting staves. He knocks out the guards and tells them princess to follow hiim. They are runn9ing down the hall when they pass Dan-Tinian's cell. They let him out and he smiles as he feels his power begin to return.
All three are running to the end of the hall when they suddenly realize they are trapped. This has all been under control. They look up to see the prison warden laughing alongside hutch leader Word, whose eyes are glowing a mysterious red. He is about to shoot prothunder where he stands when dan-tinian suddenly punches a b8utton on his shouder and grows to giant size/. He burstst through the ceiling, with the princess and Pro thunder, one in each hand.. As he escapes we see that the westwood 7 is waiting to pick them all up. They enter Pro Thunders vehicle and dock with the ship.
The ship flies off and we see Hutch Leader Word smiling mysteriousy after them his eyes glowing the mysterious red.
What People Are Saying About the Plaza of the Mind
...[Plaza of the Mind] impressed me in its magnificent weirdness...this sorta je ne sais quoi that you find in interesting art... ...I mean that purely as a compliment!
Plaza of the Mind is a clinamen away from the holeopathic replay by the Android Meme of the old perceptual agon of electrically-programmed youth confronting the Gutenbergian Establishment. Irresistible Force meets Immovable Object.