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Wednesday, 19 May 2010

The Tomorrow People

Nowadays there are entire channels devoted to programming for children and teenagers. So many that there is an entire section of the Sky grid devoted to them. Back in the days of my tender youth however, things were different. BBC One and ITV would devote 2 or 3 hours, starting around 3:30ish, to programmes for the youngsters coming out of school and that was it. Some people got very territorial about which channel they watched as well, with many an argument breaking out in the school playgrounds over the subject.

I was staunchly ITV. Even the allure of Andi Peters and his little pal Ed the Duck weren't enough to sway me. Although I'll admit that I did betray the cause slightly by switching over to the Beeb for Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles. You have to get your priorities right.

So anyway, one of the many shows that kept me entertained in the CITV slot was called The Tomorrow People, starring Kristian Schmid, late of Neighbours, and Christian Tessier, who would go on to do not much else that I know of for a few years before nabbing a recurring role as a viper pilot in Battlestar Galactica. There were other characters that came and went but those two were the spine of the show for the duration.

The basic concept, rejigged by original creator Roger Price, had teenagers manifesting powers such as telepathy and teleportation in a process called 'breaking out'. They would start disappearing from their homes and reappearing on a crashed spaceship on an island somewhere, before reappearing back where they started. They eventually teamed up to take on various weird villains and avoid the clutches of the pantomime military who wanted to harness their abilities. It was all good fun and surprisingly exciting at times. One sequence that springs to mind is one that sees them required to teleport blind into some Egyptian ruins, not knowing if they would materialise inside solid rock. Ooh the tension.

Schmid and Tessier were an amiable little double act with believable 'mate' chemistry and the constantly changing team managed, perhaps surprisingly, to avoid the curse of the child actor almost completely. I don't remember any particularly bad 'weak links'.

The whole thing was pretty much over before it started though, with the 3 seasons combined only amounting to 25 episodes but they did a lot with what they had. The guest stars alone made it a worthwile addition to anyones schedule. I mean, the aforementioned Egyptian serial even saw Christopher Lee turn up, playing Rameses. If that doesn't float your boat...

I loved this show, it has to be said, but I always had a slight problem while watching. Namely my Mother, sitting there all smug like, telling me how "It's not as good as the old one." Every bloody week. What did I care about some show that was canceled before I was even born? As far as I was concerned this was the real Tomorrow People and nothing was gonna convince me otherwise.

Yeah right.

Next : I'm not a perv, I just like the ladies.

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