|Debuting as a segment of Tarzan and the Super Seven in 1978, Jason of Star Command blasted off to its own time slot in the fall of 1979. This live action series was a throwback to the weekly space serials of the 50’s, with the emphasis on cliffhanger endings and nonstop action.
Jason was a member of Star Command, a galactic law enforcement agency 200 years in the future. Jason rode around on his ship The Starfire, accompanied by his female counterpart Nicole Davidoff, played by Susan O’Hanlon (the daughter of actor George O’Hanlon, who was the voice of George Jetson). O'Hanlon was replaced after one season by Tamara Dobson, playing the role of Samantha.
Also working only one season was James Doohan, famous for playing Engineer Scott on the original Star Trek. Doohan portrayed First Commander Canarvin, giving way to John Russell, who took over The Starfire as Commander Stone in 1979. Also along for the ride was Dr. E.J. Parsafoot, a bushy-browed inventor. The crew used their combined efforts to defeat main nemesis Dragos, a towering, bearded figure.
Only 12 episodes of Jason were produced for the entire three-year run; in fact, some of Jason's footage was recycled from Filmation's Space Academy series. Some thought the show's failure was a sign that the serial format had run its course, but it was actually a financial decision. Production costs ran about $220,000 an episode for live action (not counting actors' residuals), so Filmation decided to concentrate on animation, at a savings of $55,000 an episode. The show officially left the airwaves in September 1981.