Princess Ardala is a member of the Draconian Empire. She is the oldest daughter of the evil Draconian Emperor Draco, and the only remaining daughter who is unmarried.
Ardala is under the illusion that William "Buck" Rogers (Gil Gerard) is the most genetically perfect male in the galaxy, and therefore, is constantly trying to win his love. She is insanely jealous of Buck's relationship with Wilma Deering (Erin Grey).
Princess Ardala first appears in episode one in season one. Due to a space phenomenon, NASA astronaut William "Buck" Rogers and his space shuttle are sent off course and his life system freezes for 500 years. In 2491, he awakens aboard the flagship Draconia, under the command of Princess Ardala and her henchman Kane (Henry Silva).
The Draconians repair Buck's shuttle, but secretly plant a homing beacon aboard to track a path through Earth's defense shield. Upon arriving on Earth, Buck learns that everyone he knew had perished in a nuclear holocaust and Earth has been rebuilt over the centuries.
Because of the homing device, the authorites accuse Buck of espionage. However, Buck claims the Draconians have set him up and that their representative, Princess Ardala has arrived in an armed warship to Earth, which he claims is a violation of the peace treaty.
Buck is sentenced to be executed, but Wilma Deering tends to believe his story. Buck and Wilma lead a force of Starfighters to the Draconian ship to search it. However, before they can arrive, the Draconian ship is attacked by Marauders. In the ensuing combat Buck shoots down the attackers and saves Wilma's life.
When a celebration of the treaty with Draconia ensues on Earth, Buck sets out to prove the Draconians' hostile intent. He does this by seducing Ardala, returning with her to the Draconian ship, and sabotaging her attack fighters before she can launch them against Earth.
Escape from Wedded Bliss
Princess Ardala returned for episode twelve in season one. Here she attacks New Chicago with an indestructible alien weapon and orders the Earth leaders to hand over Buck Rogers or she will destroy every city on the planet.
Instead of turning himself over, Buck goes off to find a man named Garedon, a Draconian defector living in seclusion on Earth who knows the layout of Ardala's warship. Unfortunately, the man is insane with fear of being captured and the only way to learn what he knows is to probe his mind.
In the meantime, Buck surrenders to Ardala who wants him to marry her in exchange for sparing Earth. Buck plays along until Wilma and Dr. Huer (Tim O'Connor) can relay the location of the alien weapon control system so he can destroy it and end Ardala's hold over Earth.
He then uses a spray that knocks her out, and places her on the bed, while he searches the craft. After Ardala wakes up, she has Kane search for Buck. When found, he is brought to her, and explained that Buck has to fight for her in the arena. Buck is prepared for a fight with Tiger Man.
Buck wins the fight, but refuses to kill Tiger Man at the conclusion. Princess Ardala orders the wedding ceremony to go on as planned. However, just as the traditional collar is about to be placed around his neck, Buck knocks it away and escapes, making it to the control room. Once inside, he destroyed the weapon.
When Tiger Man was ordered to pick up Buck and take her to Ardala's quarters, Tiger refused. Instead Tiger Man, who felt he owed Buck his life, put Ardala in a headlock, and demanded for her to let Buck go. Ardala, realizing that there would be more opportunities allows Buck to leave.
Escape from Wedded Bliss GalleryEdit
Princess Ardala appears in episode seventeen of season one. After a pilot is killed testing a new Draconian "Hatchet Fighter" designed by Kane, Princess Ardala orders the program cancelled. However, she changes her mind when she comes up with an idea for a replacement pilot.
Later, Buck investigates a derelict space capsule that appears to be from the 20th-Century, but once aboard he learns that it is a trap to capture him.
Buck is taken aboard Ardala's flagship where she shows Buck a cloning lab where Kane (Michael Ansara) has made an android copy of him called a Zygot. Kane then records Buck's combat experience with a special suit that directly records Buck's neural memory. He then implants the information into the android, and eventually the others he is making, that will ultimately pilot a wave of his new fighters against Earth.
Since Buck refuses to be her husband, she asks if he would consider to be her consort. However, Buck refuses this, telling her that though she is the most beautiful woman he has seen, he can't be forced to love her. Ardala is furious, and uses Buck's clone to be her replacement. She soon tires of him, since his personality is far different from the real Buck.
Buck tries to escape, but finds Ardala has sent one of his clones to Earth as an imposter, rigged with a bomb capable of destroying New Chicago. According to the plan, when the clone is with the new leaders of Earth, he will be detonated.
When the clones left to attack Earth, the real Buck took the place of one of them. Along with Wilma they engaged in a spaceship fight, and defeated them all. Ardala was left to tell Kane that his plan was flawed, and that there is only one Buck Rogers.
Ardala Returns GalleryEdit
Flight of the War Witch
Princess Ardala made her final appearance in the two-part episode twenty-three and twenty-four. It orginally appeared as a two-hour episode, before it was sydicated as a two-part episode.
A UFO lands outside New Chicago and presents a device for navigating an interdimensional vortex into another universe. Buck agrees to be the pilot to enter the vortex, but Princess Ardala steals the device and intends to follow him.
Once through, Buck finds the planet Pendar, whose people tell of their conflict with the Zaads, an enemy race ruled by Zarina the War Witch (Julie Newmar).
Lacking the means to wage war, the Pendarans ask Buck to fight their enemy for them. Meanwhile, the Draconians arrive, with Wilma and Dr. Huer against their wishes, but Ardala refuses to help the Pendarans. Buck also declines and the aliens withhold the means for returning to their universe leaving Buck and Ardala trapped with no other choice but to comply.
Buck asks Ardala to join forces, but Ardala instead tries to befriend the evil Zaad leader Zarina. However, Ardala's plan backfires when Zarina thinks her a spoiled child, and is put in a holding cell along with Buck.
As a result, Ardala is forced to work with Buck in combating the Zaad forces after all. This arrangement is really devised to save her own skin.
Zarina is killed when her warship that she is riding in, crashes into Pendar's defense shield.