Saving the Sixties: Counter-Measures

OK, for round about eighteen months now, I’ve been beavering away on quite a few projects. And now, they are starting to see release, so I’m hoping to update with some actual content a little more often from now. Let’s see how that works out…

So, Series 1 of Counter-Measures was released earlier this month.

Four hour-long, full-cast dramas. Taking characters from a Doctor Who story set in 1963, and imagining they’d got a series of their own. And that it had been made back in the Sixties.

Think Quatermass, Avengers, Prisoner: something like each of these, and something of its very own, too. It was very exciting being in on the start of a new series, coming up with the feel for the show. And with the springboard of taking characters so well established – in less than two hours of screentime – by some wonderful actors, and fitting them into something that will stand on its own – no prior knowledge required. And then of course, the job of creating new stories, new threats for them to fight, all within a world recognisable as Britain in the 1960s. It was great fun bouncing ideas around with producer David Richardson and script editor John Dorney, as well as my fellow writers in Series 1, Paul Finch, Ian Potter and Justin Richards.

Then came the job of writing, entailing lots of research into the history and science of the time – we wanted to convey the sense of a group at the forefront of technology, pushing at the boundaries of understanding and sometimes falling straight through…

My particular episode involved reading up on the fascinating papers by Alan Turing on the possibilities of artificial intelligence, as well as refreshing my mind on some fun probability theory I remembered from A-Levels! The cover features Pamela Salem as Professor Rachel Jensen:

Martin Montague and Nick Briggs have done fantastic work on the sound design and music – with the covers by the very clever Alex Mallinson adding to the whole ’60s vibe. It really does feel like the soundtrack to some lost TV show. Add to this the superb cast: Pamela Salem, Simon Williams and Karen Gledhill reprising their TV roles, with a new, slippery Whitehall boss played by Hugh Ross. Along with guests stars of the calibre of Adrian Lukis and Stephen Grief. People seem to like it so far – so much so, a second series will be made next year…

Of course, I’d recommend you head over to Big Finish and buy a copy. (Or amazon if you like – though from Big Finish direct you get an instant digital copy as well as the CD).

I’m very proud of my contribution to it – and I hope you enjoy your trip to the 1960s.

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