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For millions of years, Earth was fertile and rich. Then pollution and waste began to take their toll. Civilization fell into ruin. This is the world of the 25th century. Only a handful of scientists remain, men who have vowed to rebuild what has been destroyed. This is their achievement: Ark II, a mobile storehouse of scientific knowledge, manned by a highly trained crew of young people. Their mission: to bring the hope of a new future to mankind.
Made in the 1970s when ecology was ascendant, Ark II posited a world where mankind's environmental carelessness had caused the collapse of civilization by the 25th century. A few scientists remained, though, and they've created the Ark to be the envoy of science and progress to scattered communities that have regressed to primitive agrarian conditions. It cruised a desolate, desert-like wasteland, where pockets of humanity survived in isolated oases. Manning the Ark was a crew of four. Jonah was the captain of the Ark and normally the driver. Young scientists Ruth and Samuel provided support. Finally, there was Adam, a talking chimpanzee with intelligence on a par with some humans. Aside from a utility laser, the Ark crew, as part of their pacifist beliefs, carried no weapons. As a last resort, they carried blinding dazzler devices to temporarily disable attackers. The crew never used violence, not even striking others. A long vehicle the size of a tractor-trailer, the Ark was packed with scientific equipment. A second, smaller vehicle, the Roamer, was used for side missions. The Ark also carried the Jet Jumper, a jetpack that Jonah would use for aerial scouting. Whenever they had to leave the Ark unattended, a forcefield could be used to secure the vehicle from intruders. Like many other children's shows of the era, Ark II always left its young viewers with a clear moral at the end of each episode. It was produced by Filmation, one of the leaders of Saturday morning children's programming in the 1970s.