History Files

THE TOMORROW PEOPLE
(1992-95)

 

Thirteen years after its last appearance, the return of the science fiction series, which was such a low-budget success in the 1970s, raised a good deal of interest, both amongst fans of the original and the public. There was a lot of press coverage generated by publicity releases, and expectation were high. What was seen, however, was largely a disappointment. The series was a complete re-write, with no reference made of the original series.

It was admitted by one of the cast that people were going to be disappointed if they thought this version was going to be the same product as the first. All the glitz had gone, as had the entire Federation aspect of the series, which, by the end had turned the original into something that was becoming less and less concerned with ordinary life on Earth, and had become too far removed from its origins.

The story revolved, as it did before, around a group of youngsters who were discovering the strange mental powers that marked them as being the next step in human evolution. They could not kill, although they weren't without the ability to defend themselves.

At first, their powers made themselves apparent only during moments of stress: for Kevin it was while suffering from an empathic link with Lisa, something he only experienced while asleep. For Lisa it was the nervousness of appearing on stage at an amateur talent night in her home town in America. Adam, an Australian, and the eldest of the group, was the first to discover what becomes their base; a half-buried spaceship which communicates to them through suggestions of thought, rather than direct telepathy.

Megabyte, also an American, is the son of General Damon, who is attached to the American Embassy in London. He goes to the same school as Kevin, and at first finds himself skeptical of Kevin's claims that he can teleport - until he sees it for himself. Then, with the appearance of government agents to prompt matters, their powers become very tangible, and they Break Out, to use the 1970s term for their final emergence as Tomorrow People. By the end of the first five episodes, Megabyte has joined them, finding the ability to teleport in a flash, as it were.

Although the first series was comparatively weak, it did do some good business around the world. Then Thames Television, the main backers and presenter of the series, lost its license to broadcast at the end of 1992. Also, Reeves Entertainment was lost from the group behind production of the first season. With that, and a few reshuffles both behind and in front of the camera, the second season was a little longer in coming than it should have been.

Nevertheless, when it did come, it was a welcome improvement. The American character of Lisa had been dropped without any reference being made to her, and a new girl, Ami, was introduced as a newly emergent Tomorrow Person. The stories were more tightly scripted and paced, and the excessiveness of the first season's slapstick-like comedy had been dropped in favour of a more subtle humour that was intermixed with heightened drama. Although the basic style of the series remained the same, there were differences, noticeably in the change in theme music, and Canadian director Ron Oliver not being rehired, and The Tomorrow People had benefited from the changes, being much better received second time around. Unfortunately, the changes were only superficial, and the series did not resurface after a third, weaker series.

Kristian Schmid was better known at the time for his role in the Australian soap Neighbours. Susan Mather was Production Manager for the first series, a title that seems to have been converted to the American equivalent more recently, and is now known as Line Producer. Stunt coordinator for Season One was the late Tip Tipping, who did much for late 1980s Doctor Who, even playing the part of an army corporal in the story Remembrance of the Daleks.

 


REGULAR CAST

Adam Kristian Schmid
Megabyte Christian Tessier
Lisa Kristen Ariza (Season 1 Only)
Ami
Naomie Harris (From Season 2, Not Story 5)
Kevin
Adam Pearce (Episodes 1-10 Only)

 


Created By: Roger Damon Price
Executive Producers: Alan Horrox
  (Season 1), Roger Damon Price
  (Seasons 2-3)
Exec Producers: Jay Mulvaney for
  Nickelodeon (Seasons 1-2), Michael
  Yudin
for Reeves (Season 1)
Executives in Charge of Production
  (Season 3): Adrienne Lopez-Dudly and
  Marjorie Cohn
Producers: Roger Damon Price (Season 1),
  Alan Horrox (Seasons 1-3)
Music: Tim Pitt and Bobby Boughton
  (Season 1), Andrew Phillips (Season 2),
Tony Flynn (Season 3)

 


Season One

The Beginning

w Roger Damon Price
(A 5-part story)
Adam finds himself suddenly transported to a deserted South Sea Island. There, he finds a half-buried spaceship which exudes a feeling of welcome towards him. Kevin is an ordinary schoolchild. But he's been suffering from recurring dreams of a girl called Lisa. The dreams become stronger and stronger, until one night, whilst staying at the home of his friend Megabyte, he unwittingly teleports himself to the island, where he meets Lisa, who has had a similar experience. Together with Adam, who explains what he's found and shows them all just what they're capable of, the threesome have to rescue Megabyte who has been kidnapped by a sinister but inept bunch of American government agents. The agents are working on behalf of a joint Anglo-American research project, which is investigating reports of teleportation and related phenomena. They transport Megabyte to London and the scene is set for a showdown. Colonel Masters, the agents' commander, is in reality working for Lady Mulvaney who wants one of the Tomorrow People for her own dishonest ends. Megabyte's father, General Damon, is in overall charge of the research project, and is dragged in. He and the Tomorrow People manage to foil Mulvaney's plans, although both she and Masters escape.

Professor Galt Hugh Quarshie
Colonel Masters Manning Redwood
Hulk Tom Kerridge
Ray Callum Dixon
Mrs Davies (Lisa's mother) Shezwae Powell
Gloria Romilly Nolan
Lady Mulvaney Gabrielle Hamilton
Smith Charles Balfour
Jones Lou Hirsch
Sammi Isabel Vega
MC Wolf Mueller

Director: Ron Oliver

 

 

Season Two

The Culex Experiment

w Lee Pressman and Grant Cathro
(A 5-part story)
Kevin is on holiday at his aunt's home. When he witnesses a strange attack on a scientist in a country lane he tries to call the police, only to be stung by a large hybrid mosquito, which sends him into a coma. Megabyte and Adam are mystified until they meet Ami at the hospital. She is just in the process of Breaking Out to become a Tomorrow Person, and has already empathically experienced what Kevin went through. When Kevin is kidnapped by the sinister Twins, the trail leads to Dr Culex and her dangerous experiments with insects, something of an obsession with her. The two Tomorrow People, joined by Ami, uncover a plot by Culex to steal a newly invented matter replicator so she can mass-produce her genetically engineered mosquitoes, which she can command. Megabyte's father, General Damon, and his department become involved when the replicator's creator, Dr Conner, finds her son has been kidnapped to be offered in exchange for the machine.

Eliza Jeffries (Dr Culex) Jean Marsh
Dr Conner Connie Booth
Aunt Ruth Denise Coffey
General Damon Jeff Harding
Dr Poole Adam Blackwood
Jim Bazil Otoin
The Twins Deborah Vale and Tessa Vale
Richie Conner Nicky Twining
Dr Leong Richard Rees
Commander Scott Janet Amsden
Jade Alexandra Milman
CID Inspector Roger Sloman
Mrs Jackson (Ami's Mother) Sally Sagoe

Directors: Alan Horrox and Viviane Albertine

Monsoon Man

w Lee Pressman and Grant Cathro
(A 5-part story)
Colonel Cobb, a mad millionaire whose cereal company produces some of the worst-tasting cereal in the world, has hired Professor Middlemass to perfect a weather-controller, with which he hopes to destroy the crops of his rivals and so rule the cereal world. In London, Adam meets Lucy, a young American whose ambition is to be a journalist. When she stumbles upon Middlemass' laboratory she thinks she is onto a great story. Adam then finds she has gone missing and, whilst helping new recruit Ami to persuade her protective mother to realise what she has become, he and the remaining Tomorrow People must find Lucy and halt the plans of the mad Colonel Cobb before they go into operation.

Lucy Laurence Bouvard
Wilkie Kerry Shale
Middlemass Christopher Benjamin
Les Bishop John Judd
Colonel Cobb William Hootkins
Mrs Jackson Sally Sagoe
Zimmerman Vincent Marzello
Annette Faith Edwards
Dr Roberts Alwyne Taylor
Mrs Butterworth Peggy Mount
Colin Peter Aubrey
Betty Paula Jacobs

Director: Niall Leonard

 

 

Season Three

The Ramses Connection

w Grant Cathro
(A 5-part story)
Adam, Megabyte and Ami receive a bizarre SOS across 4,000 years when the priceless Marhaba Stone is stolen from one of Londonís museums. The evil Sam Rees sets his sights on manipulating the Tomorrow People, and gains control of Ami through an ancient amulet. Adam manages to rescues her from Rees' power, but finds Rees is not all he seems, and is far older than he looks. In a final confrontation, the Tomorrow People receive help from Rees' enemy, Millicent,

Sam Rees Christopher Lee
Millicent Rutherford Elizabeth Spriggs
Hubert Tate Robert Lang
Scully Andrew Powell
Amanda James Adjoa Andoh
CID Officer Martin Biltcliffe
WPC Fidelma Meehan
Tutankhamun Adam Dean
Felix Fry Harry Jones
Red Rainwear Anthony O'Donnell
Lynzie Motherwell Sarah Flind
Rupert Short Christopher Brand

Director: Roger Gartland

The Living Stones

w Lee Pressman
(A 5-part story)
Teenager Jade Weston searches for some strange extraterrestrial meteorites when she witnesses a spectacular night-time landing. But the meteorites are in fact pods which contain a form of intelligence which is soon taking over the local villagers, including her mother. When her friends, Adam and Megabyte, become involved, along with Megabyte's father, she is able to mount an investigation and try to put a stop to the pods' take-over attempt. Once done, a surprise awaits her.

Jade Weston Alexandra Milman
Gladys Toms Rosemary Leach
Byron Lucifer Danny John-Jules
Felicity Triplett Patricia Hayes
Mrs Jackson Sally Sagoe
General Damon Jeff Harding
Penny Weston Sharon Duce
General Beaumont-Savage Clive Merrison
Frank Ron Berglas
Chester Toms George Raistrick
Sergeant Manx Duncan Faber
Greg Golden Jim Sweeney
Professor Beth Halliday Briony Glassco
Dr Bradley Akim Mogaji
Henderson Clara Onyemere
Murdo Trevor Steedman

Director: Crispin Reece

 

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