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THE TOMORROW PEOPLE-The Medusa Strain
The seemingly lengthy pre credits sequence picks up almost where the last story left off, minus the regulars laughing. Rash's ship blows up (Thames firecracker effects and slight blast). Jedikiah, the robot, floats in space and the effects are not bad for early 1970s and Thames and the UK. A spaceship comes out of hyper space and the model work is quite good, too. A life line with a suction cup comes out of it and sticks onto the robot and pulls him in. As he is pulled toward the ship, the theme music starts a few seconds before the credits roll!
Stephen and Kenny are in the Lab dark room trying to develop photos Stephen took in hyperspace. He knows he saw something in hyper space but Kenny balks at this. TIM is helping them and tries to get them to say thank you and please. While they do this, in the main Lab, Carol tries to read John's mind so she can win some futuristic bubble chess like game and then when that doesn't work, she tries to distract him about Stephen's "monster" in hyper space. John tells her that they've taken pictures in hyper space before and nothing comes out. Besides, TIM tells them that nothing can live in hyper space. Stephen and Kenny emerge and have the pictures on a cassette tape as used in the old reel to reel but more modern reel to reel tapes. Ginge is let in from outside and we see the outside lab door again. This time shut and then opened. He and Kenny have a slap happy relationship and knock each other about, teasing each other, Kenny teasing Ginge about being a Sap.
In the meantime, the muscle bound...and loin cloth wearing android Copin (a very impressive looking David Prowse, who played Darth Vader in STAR WARS and varied monsters in SPACE: 1999) serves tea to the owner of the ship, Rabowski, who then watches as Jedikiah returns to power using power from the ship. Jedikiah also takes on a new form, a bearded younger and skinnier looking man but still physically impressive and Rabowski is pleased by his form. Rawbowski tells him he is a criminal who likes war and fighting and he is hiding from Galactic Police and others in hyperspace but from time to time he returns to Norm Space to let the Solar Absorbers get solar power. It is 2526, 500 years Jedikiah has drifted in space. 300 years ago time travel was discovered or invented. Rawbowski has a device that can allow them to go back in time but he needs a telepath that is cooperative to lead them down the time lanes to the past. Rabawski does not know the words Tomorrow People but the universe is full of telepaths winking and blinking and spreading peace. He tells Jedikiah that a Roman Emperor was really a galactic criminal and another named AC Pritchard was Hitler or rather one of the Hitler imposter (we'll see this come into conflict with a much later story HITLER'S LAST SECRET).
Rabowski eats dinner and so does Jedikiah! He shows Jedikiah images of how he tried to brainwash and torture Peter, a Time Guardian, although I don't think he's called that in his episode or in this story...yet. Peter is an androgynous (yes, another one!) blond (yes another one!) who gets to bare chest and lower legs alot. He's on a spinning wheel in the dark. Rabowski shows Peter to Jedikiah in his treasure trophy room, where Peter is in a large bird cage which has a metal tube over it and that tube can rise up. Peter is kept prisoner due to an animal life form called a Medusa. On its own planet, the thing eats smaller telepathic life forms by sucking out brains and will do the same to larger telepathic life forms. Here, it is used in a case to keep Peter from using any powers.
At the dinner, Jedikiah suggest something like good cop bad cop and later, goes to Peter, who knows Jedikiah is trying to trick him but nevertheless falls for it in order to try to escape somehow. He will lead them down Time Lanes to the 20th Century where Jedikiah says he knows some friends who will help him. Jedikiah tries to give the pretext that he wants the Medusa to stay behind but Rabawski takes it and Copin with them.
In the meantime or not, Carol and Stephen, in AE Suits, take to hyper space with a life force detector. Before leaving, both Ginge and Kenny fool around with hit; Kenny turns it off as he points it at Ginge's head, "Dead from the neck up," and Ginge claims he's surprised Kenny has any life at all. Just after Carol and Stephen jaunt off, Ginge says something about something and Kenny reacts by saying something about Fulsom. I guess you ahve to be British to really understand what the hell they're talking about. Lefty is visiting his mother (Ginge says he's surprised he has one).
I believe Peter is forced to take Rabawski, Jedikiah, the Medusa in a canister, and Copin to The Tower of London to steal the Crowned Jewels or something we find out about in the next ep.
TIM, John and Kenny, but not Ginge, hear a loud sound. Carol and Stephen, in hyper space, hear it also and have to be called back...this is the Time Device (which looks like one of those far out 70s light fixtures with all those lit up wiring fronds).
The sounds all stop as the time travellers appear. Carol and Stephen ask TIM to recall them from hyper space and they appear back in the Lab. Kenny, John, and Ginge are frozen in time, seemingly between one second and the other. Carol goes hysterical again and declares, "TIM's dead too, they're all dead!!!!"
REVIEW: Honestly. Roger Bizley who plays the new form of Jedikiah and the man who plays Rawbowski do a very good job. They have to deliever lots and lots of exposition and they keep it going without it ever getting boring. They are aided in this by the set design which is leaps and bounds over anything DW was doing at the same time and over THE SLAVES OF JEDIKIAH. The effects are adequate for the most part and hyper space looks and sounds almost as it did in the last serial. Carol is not as hysterical as in the last story but that last scene here amlost kills the whole thing as she goes wide eyed and over reacts again. Kenny is sidelined for most of this...again and doesn't do anything that embarassing. We can, however do without Ginge. He's really a lame character and once in a while he has a funny line but the show can do without him. Unfortunately this story and the next THE VANISHING EARTH feature him A LOT. Ginge is written out of the show when between series one and two, his motorcycle fell on him and he broke his leg, if that didn't happen, he'd have been in it a lot longer. Geeze. Nick Young does a good job but why chide Stephen about his "hyper space Loch Ness Monster"? As Carol says John is a bit of a know all. This episode doesn't suck and the sets and effects and that Lab are just great. The ideas keep on coming and then there's the whole gay factor: bondage again, torture again, bare chests and flat muscled stomachs, foppish girlie boys and fair haired males...and a man's man who looks fat and unconditioned turned on or impressed by Jedikiah's form, inviting him to plunder the riches of time with him! The music works, stock or not, slow version of the theme song or not and if not for Carol, the cliffhanger would have worked, too. A most imaginative series that, for now, is living up to the premise.