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Message From Keeler

Space Island OnePaula Hernandez is a young scientist, and Space Station Unity’s most recent arrival. While the mysteries of the universe intrigue her, they don’t fascinate her as much as trying to find out what happened to her predecessor, a man named Keeler. Not only have all official records been expunged from the station’s database, but none of Paula’s crewmates seem to want to talk about it. When she digs deeper into the station’s computer mainframe, she finds an odd entry for Keeler, consisting of an incomplete verse of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” When Paula completes the verse, she sets into motion a deadly program buried deep in the station’s computer, carrying out Keeler’s final wishes regarding his former crewmates – and apparently, he wanted them all to die.

Space Island Onewritten by Andrew MacLear
directed by Dirk Campbell
music by Richard Blackford & Glenn Keiles

Cast: Judy Loe (Kathryn McTiernan), Indra Ove (Paula Hernandez), Angus MacInnes (Walter B. Shannon), Bruno Eyron (Dusan Kashkavian), Julia Brennerman (Harry Eschenbach), Kourosh Asad (Dr. Kaveh Homayuni), William Oliver (Lyle Campbell), Sally Grace (Control voice)

Notes: Space Island One was a short-lived attempt at a serious, not-too-far-into-the-future SF series set aboard an Earth-orbiting research station. Befitting a series set on a near-future space station, there were very few guest stars, with most of the show revolving around the main cast. Numerous bits of dialogue establish that Unity is a privately-owned corporate space station, since Keeler’s fate was apparently covered up to appease shareholders on Earth.

Space Island OneJudy Loe had been one of the stars of Russell T. Davies’ church-scandal soap opera Revelations, and had appeared in everything from Monty Python’s The Meaning Of Life to hospital drama Casualty and its spinoff, Holby City. Angus MacInnes may be a familiar face to SF fans: he appeared briefly in Star Wars as Gold Leader, whose wingman insisted upon staying on target (leading to both Rebel pilots’ demise). Indra Ove had recently appeared in The Fifth Element and would also go on to appear on Holby City. Bruno Eyron, born Bruno Eirund, was a familiar face on German TV with starring roles in such series as Balko and Vienne Crime Squad; fellow German actor Julia Bremermann went on to star in the German series Coast Guard. (Since Space Island One was a British-German co-production, the German producers, Vox Film Und Fernseh-GMBH & Co., had casting input.)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Quarantine

Space Island OneAn unmanned Mars lander is returning to Earth, and is expected to berth at Unity before its precious samples of Martian soil are returned to Earth. The station’s scientists are bucking for a chance to get the first crack at analysis, though scientists on Earth are clamoring for the same prestigious opportunity. A malfunction on the lander itself means that it’ll be docked at Unity longer than expected, giving the station crew no excuse not to examine the samples. Harry finds herself under strict orders not to participate: a recent medical exam has shown her to be pregnant, so handling potentially dangerous samples is out of the question. But when strange things begin happening in the lab, and a strange phenomenon is observed within the space probe that brought the samples back from Mars, it could be that Unity’s crew has instead gotten the first look at something that could kill them all.

Space Island Onewritten by Stephen Baxter
directed by Crispin Reece
music by Richard Blackford & Glenn Keiles

Cast: Judy Loe (Kathryn McTiernan), Indra Ove (Paula Hernandez), Angus MacInnes (Walter B. Shannon), Bruno Eyron (Dusan Kashkavian), Julia Brennerman (Harry Eschenbach), Kourosh Asad (Dr. Kaveh Homayuni), William Oliver (Lyle Campbell), Sally Grace (Control voice)

Notes: An on-screen graphic identifies the just-arrived space probe as “Mar’s Lander” – so if there is life on Mars, it doesn’t know where to put an apostrophe.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

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