Whats the name of the show? (help!)

$0 - B


Creative Writer
there was a scifi series on english tv that i used to watch when i managed to catch it. i cannot remember the year, probably in the 80's. i cannot recall the name of the show, but i remember one of the main actors by face, unfortunately by name.

it was a series about the roman catholic church raising an army and having some sort of modern crusade, they actually invaded england.

the army dressed in black, possibly black and red, their insignia was too gloved fists crossed and they used that as a salute.

the story centred around a young male adult (think 16-19 i guess) and i think he had been through institutionalised orphanages/borstalls/training centres.

i'm guessing it was pretty much a series for teenagers due to the stories involved.

is there anywhere that has photos of british male actors to go through photofit style to maybe put a name to the face, i can then track the show down by checking the biography online of what the actor has done?


Creative Writer
well, only took me 5 months but i found it in the end!

was watching a costume drama and recognised one of the actors as being a lead actor in the series aforementioned. imdb for the costume drama listings told me the actors name (i knew his face, but not his name) and then a googling session later produced the result!



The titles give a good clue as to the premise: Britain in the near-future, following a civil war and the execution of the Royal Family, in which vicious jackbooted guards, helicopters flying over burning Union flags and a tyrannical order of knights headed by John Woodvine are the new order. Will the resistance groups succeed? Heady stuff for Sunday teatime! Gareth Thomas and Patrick Troughton also star. (6/9/87 - 6/12/87)



Set in a civil war devastated Britain in the year 2020 this big budget and ambitious adventure epic was actually filmed in 1985, but was shelved for other a year due to its pessimistic and grim tone. ITV bosses felt that the scheduled Sunday tea time slot could potentially upset a family audience, but the critics took a different tone - the programme just wasn't very good.

Britian has been ravaged by a non-nuclear war, with in the poorer people of the North opposed to the rich in the South. After the war is finished out of the ashes arises a new regime known as the Knights of God who rule the country ruthlessly and with absolute control. London has been demolished and Winchester is now the capital of the country. But in Wales and Yorkshire a growing resistance movement is ready to take on the Knights of God.

The series began when Controller of Programmes at TVS, Anna Holme, challenged the writer Richard Cooper to come up with a tough story for children, but featuring primarily an adult cast. Cooper was concerned about the rise of groups who used their religion to attack others, often violently. Cooper was also aware of giving the series too much of a futuristic edge so did not include any of the usual sci-fi cliches such as robots and laser guns, sticking to recognisable technology and hardware instead. He also took inspiration from the legends of King Arthur, giving many of the characters names based upon them.

John Dale, who had previously worked on the Saturday morning children's show No.73, was appointed producer to oversee the mammoth 20 week production schedule. Five weeks were spent on location in Wales alone, with further work taking in Southampton and the New Forest. Experienced directors Andrew Morgan and Michael Kerrigan shared the directing duties between them with Morgan responsible for seven episodes and Kerrigan the remaining six. By all accounts the shooting schedule was especially hectic and exhausting on location. One particularly difficult and costly scene involved a stuntwork. Dale describes the situation: "One of the biggest stunts was turning a Landrover 360 degrees in the air before crashing down a cliff into a river...we couldn't trun the bloody thing over! We tried eight times and eventually we just blew the thing to smithereens which was very spectacular; they did a three-quarter turn and crashed it into the river. I was terrified because it was costing us about three grand per minute and we had oxy-actylene men under the water, ambulances on standby."

Some further editing was required just before transmission. Actor Nigel Stock had died in between filming and broadcast. On screen his character, Simon, is confronted by one of the Knights with the line "What use are you to me - old, sick, near to death?" It was decided by Dale that this line should be snipped out of respect to Stock. The music for the series was provided by musicians from both the BBC Philharmonic and London Symphony Orchrestras.

Casting was a shared decision between the directors and producer, but even with a cast of over 50 characters - cramming in such thespian luminaries such as Gareth Thomas, Patrick Troughton, John Woodvine, Don Henderson, Nigel Stock, Tenniel Evans and Frank Middlemass - the series was not a success and received a critical damming.



Code Monkey
Staff member
OK, you got me.... I never heard of it before! I'm familiar with most of the b-grade sci-fi & fantasy type shows & movies but missed this one.

After it aired did it ever come back in syndication or was it a one-time fiasco?


Creative Writer
got canned as it was too depressing, in fact it had to wait over a year for airing due to the timeslot it was programmed for! looks like only 13 episodes were made.

and being british cult tv there is very little chance you will have had a chance to watch it since the US fascination for british tv just didn't exist during that period.

i think the show hit a nerve for a certain proportion of the english audience too with the falklands war only 5 years before airing. i'm not 100% sure where i was, but i do remember watching this series when it first aired. i think we'd just come back from zimbabwe and were living in manchester in the northwest of england.

there was another show i remember watching that was even more stagnant and cut off too early, wonder how hard that one will be to find!

follows a lad who is highly inteligent and goes to live at a special (think private corporate type) school to get a special education and there was this one building they weren't allowed near and i remember one scene where the lad watched a bird fly over the building and die from some radiation type signal the building was beaming upwards.

but since i didn't like that series and it doesn't have any special place in my heart i will not spend the next 5 months tracking that one down too!!!

forgot this link : http://www.tv-ark.org.uk/cult/cultmenu-new.html

check out some of the cult shows we "suffered" and also the names attached to them! Hoyle, Wyndham, Asimov, etc, etc. imagine if we had those great authors now, with our television technology and the shows we could produce! no felgercarb straight out of the big bad hollywood mangler, but specialist, original programming!