FANTASY ISLAND – THE COMPLETE SERIES (ABC 1977-84) RARE!!! Ricardo Montalbán, Hervé Villechaize, Christopher Hewett,Wendy Schaal
Welcome to Fantasy Island!
Smiles, everyone, smiles!
Fantasy Island is an American fantasy drama television series created by Gene Levitt and produced by Aaron Spelling and Leonard Goldberg. It aired on ABC from 1977 to 1984 for a total of 152 episodes. The series starred Ricardo Montalbán as the mysterious Mr. Roarke, the enigmatic overseer of the island located somewhere in the Pacific Ocean, where people from all walks of life could come and live out their fantasies, albeit for a price.
Roarke was known for his white suit and cultured demeanor, was initially accompanied by an energetic assistant, Tattoo, played by Hervé Villechaize. Tattoo would run up the main bell tower to ring the bell and shout "De plane! De plane!" to announce the arrival of a new set of guests at the beginning of each episode. This line, shown at the beginning of the series' credits, became an unlikely catchphrase because of Villechaize's spirited delivery and French accent. In later seasons, he would arrive in his personal go-kart, sized for him, and recklessly drive to join Roarke for the visitor reception while the staff scrambled to get out of his way.
From 1981 to 1982, Wendy Schaal joined the cast as a beautiful, brown-eyed blonde assistant named Julie; in the season five story "The Case Against Mr. Roarke", Roarke stated that Julie was his goddaughter. The producrs dismissed Villechaize from the series before the 1983–1984 season, which ended up being its last, and Tattoo was replaced by a more sedate butler type named Lawrence, played by Christopher Hewett, who pressed an electronic button to ring the bell rather than climb the tower.
Just prior to the guests alighting from the plane, Mr. Roarke would address his assembling employees with the phrase "Smiles, everyone! Smiles!" As each visitor disembarked, Roarke would describe to Tattoo (or another assistant) the nature of their fantasy, usually with a cryptic comment, suggesting the person's fantasy will not turn out as they expected. Roarke would then welcome his guests by lifting his glass and saying: "My dear guests, I am Mr. Roarke, your host. Welcome to Fantasy Island."
Like several other series of the era, such as The Love Boat and Murder, She Wrote, Fantasy Island employed many celebrity guest stars, often bringing them back repeatedly for different roles.
This 42 DVD set contains all 7 seasons – 152 episodes.