Starring the Computer is a website dedicated to the use of computers in film and television. Each appearance is catalogued and rated on its importance (ie. how important it is to the plot), realism (how close its appearance and capabilities are to the real thing) and visibility (how good a look does one get of it). Fictional computers don't count (unless they are built out of bits of real computer), so no HAL9000 - sorry.

Please let me know if you spot any mistakes, or have any tips about films not mentioned here that feature computers.

James Carter <james@starringthecomputer.com>


News

2019-01-20 16:55 Green Figures on a Shoestring
The Green Hornet episode The Ray Is for Killing has a Burroughs B205, the Shoestring episode Utmost Good Faith has a ICL 2900 and the IBM 7090 plays a crucial role in Hidden Figures.
2019-01-12 00:01 A Medley of Microcomputers
The third episode of Dark has a Commodore 64C, the pilot of Moonlighting has Tandy TRS-80 Color Computer and there is a Tandy TRS-80 Model 100 in the V episode War of Illusions. There are Apple IIs in The Dead Zone and the Magnum P.I. episode Summer School. And finally a couple of Amstrad CPC appearances: a 464 in the famous Christmas 1986 episode of Eastenders and a 6128 in the Red Dwarf episode Stasis Leak.
2019-01-05 23:08 Three times GE 635
The GE 635 makes its Starring-the-Computer debut with three appearances. There is the most fleeting of shots in Star Trek II - The Wrath of Khan and then a considerably better view in Serenity and an episode of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.
2019-01-01 18:48 New Year Maniac
I spent New Year's Eve binge watching Maniac and it's a pretty rich Starring-the-Computer seam. There is a DEC PDP-11/35 and a PDP-11/05, an Osborne 1, an IBM System/360 and a Compaq Deskpro model 1. There are also three debutantes making their first Starring-the-Computer appearance: the Data General Eclipse S/130, the Northstar Advantage and the DEC PDP-8/L.
2018-12-28 15:04 Some Seinfeld
The Bookstore is among a number of episodes that shows a Apple Twentieth Anniversary Macintosh in Jerry's apartment, and The Wizard gives Starring the Computer its first Sharp Wizard OZ-5500.
2018-11-18 22:57 STs and Things
All of the following feature Atari STs: Steel and Lace, Glitter, the T and T episode Sophie a La Modem (which also has a Mega ST), Jason Bourne (which also as Starring the Computer's first Dell Latitude 14 Rugged Extreme) and Atomic Blonde (which also has a collection of other machines - an Apple Macintosh, a Commodore 64C, an Amstrad PPC and a Toshiba T3100).
2018-11-10 18:12 A Pack of PCs, and a Sun.
The Librarians episode And the Rise of Chaos has a Toshiba T1000, the Alice episode Sweet Erasable Mel has two Epson machines: the QX-10 and HX-20, the Fame episode The Lounge Singer Who Knew Too Much has a Tandy 1000 and Trois couleurs: Bleu has a IBM PS/2. Also added are a number of new computers. Edge of the Axe has two Starring-the-Computer debutantes from Sperry: the PC and PC/microIT, the eighth episode of Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan has a GPD Win. Contact has a couple of machines we've seen before (the IBM ThinkPad 300 and PS/2) but also has two newcomers: the Compaq Presario 1000 and a rare appearance of a Sun Microsystems computer, the SPARCstation 5.
2018-10-27 00:33 Jackrabbit
There's a sizeable collection of computers in Jackrabbit including a pile of Macintosh SEs, an IBM 5140, a Macintosh XL, a Texas Instruments DS990/1, and a very brief Starring-the-Computer debut of a Tandy 1000.
2018-10-14 23:30 Big Old Bunch of Big Iron
A number of old mainframes make their Starring-the-Computer debut in this update: the Sperry UNIVAC 1108 appears in Rollerball, the Hitachi HIPAC 101 appears briefly in Battle in Outer Space, the Remington Rand 409 plays a crucial role in the first episode of The Chevy Mystery Show, the Digital Scientific META-4 is seen briefly in Death Wish, and along with a DEC Rainbow 100, there is a Burroughs B3900 in Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins. Also, there is a IBM 705 in the 22nd episode of Men Into Space, and the 4th episode of The Green Hornet has Burroughs B205 tape drives.
2018-10-04 15:47 Undercover Arduino
Undercover Grandpa sees the first Starring-the-Computer appearance for an Arduino Duemilanove and an Alienware 15 as well as a fleeting appearance from a Commodore PET.