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#1 Slim

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Posted 18 September 2018 - 10:32 PM

David Callan is a senior operative in a shadowy, secret branch of the British secret services known as The Section. He's an ex-convict, ex-army, something of a loner and perhaps something of a misfit in a line of work where most of his colleagues are upper class career spies - the faintly psychopathic Toby Meres; the brash, callous James Cross.

 

But as his section chief, codenamed Hunter, knows: Callan is the most valuable of all of them. Clever, resourceful, hard as nails and impeccably thorough. A dead shot with the cold nerve to kill. He gets the red files: high risk operations, high priority targets, assassinations.

 

 

To assist him on some of his operations Callan pays an associate whom he met in prison, known as Lonely. Lonely knows nothing of Callan's real line of work, assuming him to be part of the criminal underworld. He's a shifty, nervous and rather malodorous character. But he knows better than to ask questions, and he's brilliant at following people and picking locks.

 

Callan doesn't have the glamorous lifestyle of a James Bond; no fast cars, no casinos. He lives in a rather ordinary flat somewhere in South London. The offices of the Section are a sort of dingy basement, with old metal filing cabinets and an annexed shooting range.

 

Callan's trouble is his conscience. He sometimes loathes the brutal work of the Section, in which people are marked for death at a stroke of a pen or destroyed by powerful hallucinogenic drugs in interrogation. He has a strong anti-authoritarian streak.

 

But he knows that his dirty work in the Section is the one thing that he does brilliantly well.

 

And besides, if he did leave, he might just find himself in a red file of his own.



#2 MrSkeptic

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 01:27 AM

Looks interesting and I have to say, it's nice seeing you around a little more.

They said I could be anything, so I became a disappointment.

 

 


#3 Moving Target

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 02:10 AM

Never watched that one.

#4 baldiepete

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 08:47 AM

Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased) was a British private eye detective series from 1969/1970. Hopkirk was murdered and returned as a ghost (you could tell he was a ghost, he wore a white suit) that only Randall could see to help him with his cases. I had thought it was from a few years later so I must have seen repeats in the early 70’s. I remember loving it as a kid (when I could persuade my parents to let me watch it) but I wouldn’t watch it now because it was almost certainly rubbish and some things are best left as memories.



#5 baldiepete

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 10:59 AM

Blakes 7 by Doctor Who creator Terry Nation was a British SF series from 1978 to 1981. Pitched as “the Dirty Dozen in outer space” it drew on traditional stories such as Robin Hood and obviously on Star Trek. Blake was a political dissident who escaped from the evil Terran Federation using an alien spaceship with superior technology and then with his companions uses it to harass and disrupt the Federation. Blake himself disappeared after the second series and the it then concentrated mostly on two of the sidekicks, Avon, a computer expert lacking emotion and Vila, a thief and coward. The Terran Federation villain was Supreme Commander Servalan (played by the magnificent Jacqueline Pearce who sadly died last week), a ruthless but sexy sociopath.

https://en.m.wikiped.../wiki/Blake's_7

It has to be said that the production values on the programme were absolutely woeful with terrible special effects, far worse than those of Star Trek which was more than 10 years older than it. I think the BBC paid as little as they possibly could get away with.

At the time I preferred the latter series after Blake left, the conflicts between Avon and Servalan and Avon and Vila were superb. It’s probably just nostalgia for youth though and I have no intention to ever watch it again, I’d hate to spoil the memory.



#6 baldiepete

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 10:59 AM

Blakes 7 inspired a symphonic metal track Intergalactic Space Crusaders by Star One.



#7 Slim

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 11:19 AM

I loved Randall and Hopkirk. There was a remake around the turn of the century with Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer, better known as an anarchic comedy duo.

 

reeves_hopkirk.jpg

 

I quite liked it, but predictably many die-hard fans of the old series hated it.



#8 Slim

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 11:23 AM

The Terran Federation villain was Supreme Commander Servalan (played by the magnificent Jacqueline Pearce who sadly died last week), a ruthless but sexy sociopath.
 

 

Aw no, I hadn't heard that. I quite liked Blakes 7. The terrible clunky sets and wooden (or over-) acting were just part of its charm.



#9 fenderjazz

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 01:44 PM

In the Northeast US we had Uncle Floyd

 

 

Basically the model for Wayne's World



#10 Slim

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 05:04 PM

Fascinating - the singer in Dee Dee's band is a sort of bargain basement PJ Harvey

 

 

Probably both influenced by Iggy Pop.



#11 Slim

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 05:34 PM

I remembered earlier that the first time I visited the US, in 1987 - one of the first things I saw when I turned on the TV in my room at the YMCA in New York was some sort of ad for PBS featuring Paul Darrow from Blake's 7. It was basically a head and shoulders shot of Paul, in character as Avon looking sideways at the camera with his trademark condescending sneer, saying "if you want the best of British Sci Fi .. tune in to the PBS channel". Or something like that.

 

I looked for it on YouTube. Didn't find it, but I did find this gem from roughly the same time, so obviously he was working in the US that summer.

 



#12 Moving Target

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 07:32 PM

Aw no, I hadn't heard that. I quite liked Blakes 7. The terrible clunky sets and wooden (or over-) acting were just part of its charm.



“You betrayed us, Blake? You...... betrayed........ meeeeeeeee???????”

Paul Darrow ruled.

#13 Slim

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 07:35 PM

It had gone away now. But it would come back, or others of its kind would come back. There was no way of telling when, no way of knowing how many of them there might be, no way of preparing for them.
Not yet.

Pink elephants, double vision, flying saucers, weather balloons, spots before the eyes: drink too much at a party, take your choice, and laugh like hell about it. It was no joke. Not even a bad joke.

They would come again.

They did come again. They kept coming.

Not funny. Far from funny when a manned space capsule blew up ten thousand miles from the Moon. Far from funny when a jumbo jet with a full load of paying passengers came apart over the Atlantic, with only one last incredulous yell from the pilot to identify what he thought he had seen. Far from funny if the public got to know the truth.

They mustn’t know.



It's 1980. That's ten years in the future for the TV audience of 1970, so of course there are futuristic jet cars and bases on the Moon, with regular shuttles there and back.

Ed Straker is an ex USAF Intelligence officer who leads an organisation called SHADO - Supreme Headquarters Alien Defence Organisation. SHADO's headquarters are a secret underground base, hidden beneath a film studio in England where Straker works, ostensibly, as a senior film executive.

Ed_Bishop_als_Cmdr_Ed_Straker.jpg


SHADO is a highly secret (and highly improbable) internationally funded concern with more advanced hardware than any military on Earth, including submarines that launch fighter aircraft underwater and single seat interceptor spacecraft carrying a single nuclear missile that launch from silos hidden in craters on the Moon. It is dedicated to defending Earth against mysterious, humanoid aliens who come to scavenge human body parts - apparently for transplants. Only a very few senior figures in the world's military and governments know about SHADO, or the aliens. The aliens wear red spacesuits and silver helmets filled with a green, oxidised liquid - apparently to protect against the ravages of extreme acceleration in space. They never speak, and their motive is never definitively established.

ufo_alien.jpg

I absolutely loved UFO as a kid. To this day it remains my favourite TV programme ever. It was absolutely enthralling.

Of course, when the VHS tapes came out in the '90s I watched it again and it turned out that some of the scripts didn't actually make sense. Some of the later episodes go for a sort of creepy horror feel, that doesn't quite work. And the acting was a bit dire on occasion. But the idea, and the models and effects, remain brilliant.

Italicised text above from the novelisation of the series; 'UFO' by Robert Miall. You can read it for free here:
https://ufoseries.com/books/ufo1.pdf



#14 Moving Target

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 03:48 AM

I did like UFO. I had all the Dinky toys.

#15 Three Eyes

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 08:03 AM

Gay_Ellis.png

 

big_1479519909_image.jpg


Hey there goes Alex. He's loaded with money. Wow he's really set himself up great.


#16 Three Eyes

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 08:06 AM

What the hell is going on with this show!? And I thought the pointy-boobed nurses of Star Trek were hot!

 

5d3ceb37bce1a268e9d3d28bf7cc10c6.jpg


Hey there goes Alex. He's loaded with money. Wow he's really set himself up great.


#17 Slim

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 09:04 AM

I did like UFO. I had all the Dinky toys.

 

I still have them, and - I have the feeling we've had this conversation before, but - Dinky decided to make the Interceptor bright metallic green. In the show they were white, of course. Someone in their management decided they'd appeal more to kids if they were green. Ridiculous.

 

 

green_interceptor.jpg

 

ufointerceptor.jpg



#18 chemistry1973

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 04:08 PM

I still have them, and - I have the feeling we've had this conversation before, but - Dinky decided to make the Interceptor bright metallic green. In the show they were white, of course. Someone in their management decided they'd appeal more to kids if they were green. Ridiculous.

 

 

green_interceptor.jpg

 

ufointerceptor.jpg

NO WAY THIS WAS FOR KIDS.

 

(wink wink nudge nudge)



#19 chemistry1973

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 04:09 PM

What the hell is going on with this show!? And I thought the pointy-boobed nurses of Star Trek were hot!

 

5d3ceb37bce1a268e9d3d28bf7cc10c6.jpg

 

Am I seeing her actual boobies.

 

#fantastic

#bestshowever



#20 chemistry1973

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Posted 20 September 2018 - 04:10 PM

Christ was 'UFO' rated X or something?!






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