• TV: NBC's Supertrain

  • Discussion related to railroads/trains that show up in TV shows, commercials, movies, literature (books, poems and more), songs, the Internet, and more... Also includes discussion of well-known figures in the railroad industry or the rail enthusiast hobby.
Discussion related to railroads/trains that show up in TV shows, commercials, movies, literature (books, poems and more), songs, the Internet, and more... Also includes discussion of well-known figures in the railroad industry or the rail enthusiast hobby.

Moderator: Aa3rt

  by reno89502
Ok, I wasn't sure where to post this, so I figured here would be as good a place as any. For those of you that remember way back to 1979, ABC had "The Love Boat", and NBC decided to do a transportation drama of their own called "Supertrain". Only 9 episodes were ever made, and the show was a expensive flop. Anyway, while surfing YouTube today, I ran across someone that has posted all 9 episodes of the show! I thought everyone would enjoy watching the show. Heres the link!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__Omp5-8 ... re=related
  by John_Perkowski
Amtrak Forum Moderator's Note:


(those who do not recognize Jackie Gleason, well , you just had to be young enough!)
  by Otto Vondrak
[moved to Railroads in Media Forum - omv]
  by Aa3rt
I don't recall watching the show myself but managed to find this through a "Google" search:

Wow, this show was really bad. Some deranged railfan like myself must have thought this show up.

Have a nice day!
  by 2nd trick op
Well........it's probaby the most coherent proof (within our specialty, anyway) of the necessary lowering of expectations that has to happen when science fiction runs up against both hard science and economic reality.

But on a more positive note, the past election brought about both voter approval of the California HSR initiative, and a new President, popular with the young, who is starting to show some signs that he's not going to just buy into the warmed-over New Deal mindset that rules much of the Democratic party.

Now if we can get a SecTrans and Amtrak CEO who are willing to develop new technology on top of what already works rather than throwing money at the dreamers, the post-1985 rail industry revival just might kick into high gear.
  by lpetrich
I watched the first episode of it on YouTube, and it seemed like rather corny Hollywood soap-opera / mobster stuff. Not my sort of thing, but then again I score well into the Asperger's range in the tests I've taken.

I was a bit more interested in the premise. The train has an extra broad track gauge and loading gauge -- about 20 ft or so -- and is bilevel. However, elevators between the floors is a bit much.

Its locomotive is nuclear-powered, and judging from my calculations elsewhere in this messageboard, it's borderline feasible, though its radiation shielding is a potentially serious problem. And steam-turbine drive? Judging from what many diesel locomotives are like, it may be steam-turbine-electric, and knowing Hollywood, they might have had an episode where someone gets in the wiring and produces lots of sparks. Or might they also have someone cooked by the steam or irradiated by the reactor?

And as to casually going over 200 mph, that's a bit easier said than done, especially around curves.

From NYC to LA is about 3000 mi, and going the distance in 36 hours means going at 83 mph on average. There wasn't much about stops along the way, but such train service would not make much sense without stopping at big cities in between NYC and LA, like Chicago.
  by Metalrailz
Also the train had a disco, full workout room, and a swimming pool.
  by 2nd trick op
Yep, and economic reality brought the Marlboro Train back to earth as well.

And speaking as one who helped clean up a few truck accidents when I started out as a dispatcher years ago, that on-train pool would have caused a couple of problems on the curves!! :P
  by GSC
Didn't it have a bowling alley too? Or was that on "The Big Bus", another accuracy-filled example of mass transit?
  by TREnecNYP
Oh man... Someone was on some serious crack when they green lighted the production design....

Just to point out a few things i found silly...

Track 1 at GCT.... Is right up against the lexington ave line way off on the east side of the station (pax shown entering down some stairs would be in the lex tunnel), the width of the train would make it impossible to get out of new york since both the causeway and the bridge are too narrow, as are the turns. And a train from GCT to LA? Wouldn't a station like Hoboken Terminal be more fitting to this train & its trans-continental aspirations? Steam coming from the train..... It's like a crappy 70's "modern" office mixed with battlestar galactica having random useless steam emissions. Nuclear power for a train, i mean i know some grades are tough, but isn't that a bit over-kill? The width of the train is a total crack-up. & the woman calling their hotel room a "compartment" :-) :P :wink: Who the hell has a countdown timer in the train for departure?

And then the random-ness of the action, people following one person & one person left standing i counted 3 times in the 1st half of the 1st episode..... So much bad stuff.

People in the 70's were good for 3 things, huge flared collars, way-too-short shorts for any athletic-esque activity, and form over function in everything from cars to architecture to clothes to everything i can think of. All 3 give me nightmares.

- A