What we have here is simply a stunning collection of Gerry Anderson’s Captain Scarlet’s TV series. It is one of the most beautiful pieces of retro/cult TV products I have seen in a very long time. The limited edition package that can be ordered from Big Finish is worth a lot more in truth that the price that they are asking for it. Due to the cross over fan base of both Big Finish and also Gerry Anderson fans alike. What I assume as been done here is to re issue stories, as they are in the format of audio then for the obvious reasons, additional narration as been added into the TV stories to paint in the action that is taking place, after all, as good as Big Finish is, we would struggle massively with the continuity if this were not the case. I must admit that having watched many of the episodes that are re-imagined here in full it works well. For one thing I certainly felt that I could see in my mind those elements of the story telling where we would see a real human hand edited in. It works which is what we are after here after all. The stories are of their time, and wonderfully evocative of the early colour TV series of my child hood. I was instantly taken back to those heady days when your TV was a 21″ CRT tube, not the huge OLED HDR and UHD 4K sets of today. In some respects this preserves the quaint and almost innocent charm that I am sure if these stories where replayed now in the ultra over exposing and digitally accurate world then it would lose some of it’s charm. At least with this audio in what sounds like a cleaned up but still vaguely mono style reproduction it keeps it’s appeal wonderfully well. The retelling because they are essentially lifted from the TV Sound track are 100% authentic, the thing which I think shines out here, is that Big Finish have managed to lift something so visual and make it work. What is more, the fact that this is audio makes the fact that in the TV format, we are effectively watching marionettes, with actors voice being dubbed onto, actually gives the audio releases more realism. We are lost in the simple fact that was what the original was like, and now they take on a new life, of real science fiction stories with characters that are actually human.
It is a massive well done to the people involved in this release. What is more it makes the whole genre fresh and new, and gives it a release. It certainly does not feel like it is celebrating it’s 50 years of being one of the most unique and entertaining science fiction and ground breaking series.
SIG as they say.
Introducing Captain Scarlet by Angus P Allan
Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons by Angus P Allan
Captain Scarlet is Indestructible by Richard O’Neill
Captain Scarlet of Spectrum by Angus P Allan
Captain Scarlet versus Captain Black by Richard O’Neill
Adapted TV stories
Big Ben Strikes Again by Tony Barwick
Manhunt by Tony Barwick
The Trap by Alan Patillo
Special Assignment by Tony Barwick
Heart of New York by Tony Barwick
Model Spy by Bill Hedley
Flight 104 by Tony Barwick
The Launching by Peter Curran and David Williams