Sapphire & Steel 1.3 and 1.4

So last night, after we watched the show and I’d written my customary yammer, I made the mistake of actually reminding our son of the nightmare we’d just watched, and then he had an awful time falling asleep. He was very, very worried about the corridor of time, and whether there were enough old books and things in his bedroom to serve as triggers for things outside time to reach in and take him. What makes it worse is that we have a two-story place, and he has the upstairs to himself. The intrusion in the first Sapphire & Steel serial takes place at the top of an old house…

Beautifully, episode four pauses for breath and a smile as Sapphire lets the children know that there are 127 beings like them, only twelve of them – “The Transuranics” – can, depending on who is telling the tale, either not be trusted or not be used where there is life. That leaves 115, and we only meet a couple of the others in the TV series. Val Pringle shows up as Lead, a huge man who likes home cooking. (Much later, Big Finish did three “seasons” of CD audio adventures and introduced Gold and Ruby as well.)

I love the way that Lead’s arrival brings things to a nice little bridge, where the characters can relax and so can the audience, charmed by the curiosity of Lead, who brings gossip from home, wherever that is, and mentions Jet, Copper, and Silver. But the chaos soon returns, leading to an unbelievably long cliffhanger. It’s about three solid minutes of doors opening and closing, howling winds, eerie noises, angry lights, and spectral figures as the beings locked in the room at the top of the stairs start flexing their muscles.

Our son was very, very freaked out and needed some extra hugs before bed tonight. He really didn’t like that door slamming open and closed!


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