The Secret World of Alex Mack

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The Secret World of Alex Mack
AlexMackTitle.jpg
GenreScience fiction
Fantasy
Teen drama
Comedy
Created byThomas W. Lynch
Ken Lipman
StarringLarisa Oleynik
Darris Love
Meredith Bishop (Seasons 1-4 (1994-1997))
Michael Blakley
Dorian Lopinto
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes78 (List of episodes)
Production
Location(s)Valencia, California
Running time22 minutes
Broadcast
Original channelNickelodeon[1]
Original runOctober 8, 1994 (1994-10-08) – January 15, 1998 (1998-01-15)
 
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The Secret World of Alex Mack
AlexMackTitle.jpg
GenreScience fiction
Fantasy
Teen drama
Comedy
Created byThomas W. Lynch
Ken Lipman
StarringLarisa Oleynik
Darris Love
Meredith Bishop (Seasons 1-4 (1994-1997))
Michael Blakley
Dorian Lopinto
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes78 (List of episodes)
Production
Location(s)Valencia, California
Running time22 minutes
Broadcast
Original channelNickelodeon[1]
Original runOctober 8, 1994 (1994-10-08) – January 15, 1998 (1998-01-15)

The Secret World of Alex Mack is an American television series that ran on Nickelodeon from October 8, 1994 to January 15, 1998, replacing Clarissa Explains It All on the SNICK line-up.[2][3] It also aired on YTV in Canada and NHK in Japan, and was a popular staple in the children's weekday line-up for much of the mid-to-late 1990s on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Repeats of the series aired in 2003 on The N, but it was soon replaced there. The series was produced by Thomas Lynch and John Lynch of Lynch Entertainment, produced by RHI Entertainment, Hallmark Entertainment, and Nickelodeon Productions and was co-created by Tom Lynch and Ken Lipman. For home video releases, it was released under the Hallmark Home Entertainment label, making it the first Nickelodeon show not to be released by Paramount Home Video or Sony Wonder.

Plot[edit]

Alex Mack is an ordinary teenage girl, living with her parents, George and Barbara, and older sister, Annie, in the corporate town of Paradise Valley. While walking home after her first day of junior high school, she is nearly hit by a truck from a chemical plant, and during the incident, she is drenched with a top-secret chemical called GC-161. She soon discovers that it gave her strange powers. These include telekinesis, the ability to zap bolts of electricity from her fingers, and the capacity to morph into a mobile puddle of metallic liquid. However, her powers prove to be unpredictable (such as when her skin starts glowing brightly while she's nervous). She confides only in Annie and her best friend, Ray, choosing to keep her powers a secret from everyone else, including her parents, for fear of what the chemical plant CEO, Danielle Atron, will do to her if she finds out.

Characters[edit]

Main characters[edit]

Recurring cast[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Filming Locations[edit]

The series was filmed in Valencia, California and the Santa Clarita Valley. The Mack home and Paradise Valley Chemical Plant interiors were filmed in a converted warehouse used as a soundstage. The junior high scenes were filmed at Charles Helmers and James Foster Elementary Schools. Castaic Middle School was used for senior high scenes.[9] The house, used for exterior shots, is located in the Berwick Place neighborhood of Santa Clarita.

Availability[edit]

The show's first season (consisting of 13 episodes on two discs) was released by Genius Entertainment (also known as Genius Products, a subsidiary of RHI Entertainment) on DVD format on October 2, 2007.[10] The set is noteworthy for giving Jessica Alba top billing on the package, most likely in an effort to sell more copies, even though she actually only appears in a supporting role, and only in a few episodes. This was then released in Region 2 on April 2, 2012 and in Region 4 on June 6, 2012. In October 2011, DVD Rare released a set containing all 78 episodes over 4 seasons of the show on a twelve-disc set. However, this is not an official release but rather an unofficial, customized set.

Season 1 of the show was released on DVD in the UK by Fabulous Films on April 2, 2012. The BBFC caused controversy when they classified the release a 15 for imitable behavior shown in a fun and risk-free manner (in this case, hiding in an appliance that could trap and kill a child in real life): "One episode in this TV series contains a scene in which a child character hides inside a tumble drier. The presentation of this behavior is comic and no negative consequences are shown which would warn young viewers of the potential dangers of hiding in such appliances. While fatal incidents of children trapped in washing machines or fridges are rare, there remains sufficient cause for serious concern. The distributor indicated that they would be happy to accept a higher certificate rather than cutting the episode. The TV series is rather dated and would not have much appeal to a young audience when compared to current children's TV programs. In addition, as the work was being targeted at an adult 'nostalgia' market, children would not be the 'natural' audience. The BBFC decided - given the work's history, the company's willingness to accept a higher certificate and that the work was not being aimed at children - to pass it '15' without cuts." The first and second seasons are available through Amazon.com's Instant Video section and through iTunes. Episodes of the series have been seen on a sporadic basis on TeenNick's 1990s-oriented block, The '90s Are All That.

Book series[edit]

A book series aimed at young readers was released along with the series. The first and last books of the series were novelizations of the first and last episodes, respectively. The rest of the series consisted of completely original stories, tied into the main series through the mentioning of various plot points from the TV episodes.

References[edit]

  1. ^ James, Caryn (1996-06-02). "TELEVISION VIEW;Just a Regular Kid Being Remarkable". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-08-12. 
  2. ^ "SHOWS FOR YOUNGSTERS AND THEIR PARENTS TOO : Larisa Oleynik finds the secret is to have fun as 'Alex Mack'". The Los Angeles Times. 1994-10-02. Retrieved 2010-08-24. 
  3. ^ Mangan, Jennifer (1994-10-05). "Magic `Mack'". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2010-08-30. 
  4. ^ "Morphing Magic". Sun Sentinel. 1996-08-03. Retrieved 2010-08-30. 
  5. ^ "`Alex Mack' Star Just An Ordinary Teen". Chicago Tribune. 1995-10-19. Retrieved 2010-11-09. 
  6. ^ "Zap! You're Famous; Tv Show Turns Actress Into A Star". Chicago Tribune. 1995-08-01. Retrieved 2010-11-09. 
  7. ^ "Mack Attack For The Star Of The Secret World Of Alex Mack, Life Is More Than Being A Puddle Of Goo.". Sun Sentinel. 1995-08-22. Retrieved 2010-11-09. 
  8. ^ "Morphing Teen Plays To Kids' Fantasies In `Alex Mack'". Chicago Tribune. 1996-06-10. Retrieved 2010-08-30. 
  9. ^ Schubert, Mary. "NICKELODEON SHOW `ALEX MACK' FEELS RIGHT AT HOME.". The Los Angeles Daily News.  March 23, 1997, accessed March 15, 2011.
  10. ^ "Secret World of Alex Mack - Season 1". DVD Talk. Retrieved 2011-01-30. 

External links[edit]