Once Henderson and the group reach the edge of the jungle again, they realize that the volcano has been continually spewing lava resulting in the jungle catching fire.  The fire has been slowly working its way toward the rocket.  With the jungle on fire getting to the rocket is difficult going.  Brown and Wilson are attached by Venusians.  Wilson is knocked unconscious.  Brown takes the opportunity to abandon everyone else attempting to reach the rocket first.

Brown manages to get to the rocket before the rest.  He radios the control room at Buchan Island telling them that he is the only survivor, and that the planet is full of poison gas.  He tells them that no one should venture back to Venus because it would be certain death.  The guys at Buchan Island Rocket Research Center don’t know what to do.  The Russian rocket is still heading to Venus but when they get there, there may be no one to save.

Brown then tries to sabotage the rocket.  Henderson and the others make it back to the ship.  Henderson manages to reverse what Brown tried to do but Wilson is still in the jungle and the fires are getting closer.  They are about ready to leave him behind when Wilson manages to make it back to the ship.  The group still can’t leave since they don’t have enough fuel to escape the planet’s gravitational pull.  They need the fuel that the Russians are supposed to be bringing.

When they see the Russian rocket ship on their radar it appears that the ship crashed.  Without enough fuel to leave they abandon the rocket to try to find the Russian ship.  At this point they believe they may never be able to leave the planet Venus.  

Pathfinders to Venus began broadcast during the same time that Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin made his first journey into orbit on Vostok 1. 

The spacesuits were re-designed for “Pathfinders to Mars” and “Pathfinders to Venus”.  The old ones were supposedly re-used by the BBC in Doctor Who 6, the Hammer horror film “The Damned” 1963 and the British television sit-com “Come Back, Mrs. Noah”.

Although “Target Luna” and the Pathfinder series are low budget children’s fare they encompass an impressive number of adventures that combine science fact and science fiction in a fun and entertaining way.  The questionable cinematography and the cardboard and papier-mache props add charm to the many cliffhangers and montages.   Perhaps someday the lost episodes of “Target Luna” will be found, and the series completed.

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