List of Sapphire & Steel serials

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This is a list of the television and audio serials of the British science-fiction series Sapphire & Steel.

The television series was transmitted between July 1979 to August 1982 on ITV1 and was produced by Shaun O'Riordan, with David Reid as executive. More than two decades later, an audio series was released on compact disc by Big Finish Productions. The CDs were released between May 2005 and August 2008 and were produced by Nigel Fairs and Jason Haigh-Ellery.

Television serials[edit]

Series One[edit]

Serial no. No. of episodes Original air dates (UK) Writer Director
1 6 10 to 26 July 1979 P.J. Hammond Shaun O'Riordan

A happy family lives in an 18th-century house filled with clocks and antiques. One night, a nursery rhyme ("Ring a Ring o' Roses") read aloud to Helen, the little girl, triggers a time fracture that takes away her parents. As Rob, Helen's older brother, tries to understand what has happened, two mysterious strangers appear, promising to fix things. Sapphire and Steel eventually gain Rob's trust and work out a solution to the problem. Lead also arrives to provide assistance.

(Note: P.J. Hammond novelised this story for Star Books in 1979. It was simultaneously available in both hardback and paperback)

Val Pringle as Lead, Steven O'Shea as Rob Jardine, Tamasin Bridge as Helen Jardine, Felicity Harrison as Mother, John Golightly as Father, Ronald Goodale as Countryman, Charles Pemberton as Policeman
2 8 31 July to 8 November 1979 P.J. Hammond David Foster
In an abandoned railway station, ghost hunter George Tully conducts an investigation. His solitary task is interrupted by the two interdimensional operators, who have an investigation of their own. A sinister, growing force known as the Darkness is feeding on the resentment of the dead, using as a focus Private Sam Pearce, the apparition of a World War I soldier shot and killed eleven minutes after the armistice had been signed at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918. The Darkness 'recruits' other resentful shades from the past who also died 'unfairly' as a result of a coming or completed conflict — such as the crew of an experimental submarine whose air-pumps failed, and a World War II bomber pilot killed in a crash just one flight away from being demobbed. It is up to Sapphire and Steel to decide if the life of one living human is worth the price of the danger presented to Reality.

(Note: This story's transmission was interrupted by the 1979 ITV technicians strike, which lasted from 10 August to 24 October 1979. Once the strike was over, instead of resuming transmission with the next episode, the decision was made to transmit the story from the beginning.)

Gerald James as George Tully, Tom Kelly as Private Sam Pearce (The Soldier), David Cann as Pilot, David Woodcock as Submariner

Series Two[edit]

Serial no. No. of episodes Original air dates (UK) Writer Director
3 6 6 to 22 January 1981 P.J. Hammond Shaun O'Riordan
Rothwyn and Eldred, a couple living in a modern apartment, are not what they seem. In fact, they are from the 35th Century, the apartment is their time capsule, which is situated on the roof of a modern day tower block, and the experiment is to live as 20th Century humans. But trouble starts when the couple discover that they can neither contact their controllers in the future nor two other similar time capsules in the present day. The biomechanical system that runs the capsule has experiments of its own that it plans to perform on the occupants – resenting the fact that in the 35th century, Mankind is the only animal not extinct; all other creatures, flora, fauna and even germs having been ruthlessly eradicated in order to preserve the purity of the human race. This time, Sapphire and Steel have help in the form of Silver, an interdimensional technician.
David Collings as Silver, David Gant as Eldred, Catherine Hall as Rothwyn, Russell Wooton as Changeling
4 4 27 January to 5 February 1981 P.J. Hammond David Foster
Phantom children with sepia-toned skin play in an almost deserted apartment building. Both the landlord and a tenant have mysteriously disappeared. A man without a face appears on the stairs. Something has emerged from a photograph; something which has appeared in every photograph ever taken anywhere in the world and is powerful enough to turn Sapphire and Steel into literal two-dimensional versions of themselves.
Alyson Spiro as Liz, Philip Bird and Bob Hornery as the Shape, Shelagh Stephenson as Ruth, Natalie Hedges as Parasol girl

Series Three[edit]

Serial no. No. of episodes Original air dates (UK) Writer Director
5 6 11 to 26 August 1981 Don Houghton and Anthony Read Shaun O'Riordan
Dressing up and pretending that it was once again the 1930s seemed to be a novel idea for a dinner party hosted by Lord Mullrine, a wealthy industrialist, at his country mansion to celebrate fifty years since his company was founded with the late Dr. George McDee. Mullrine has even gone so far as to have every room in the house, with the exception of his office, put back to its original style. Then, strange things start to happen: McDee himself turns up at the party along with other anachronisms, and then, one by one, the guests begin to be murdered – their bodies vanishing shortly afterwards. Secrets and lies involving McDee from fifty years before are resurfacing, Time is trying to rewrite history, and the only ones who can stop it are two uninvited guests — Sapphire and Steel.
Patience Collier as Emma Mullrine, Davy Kaye as Lord Mullrine, Nan Munro as Felicity McDee, Jeffry Wickham as Felix Harborough, Jeremy Child as Howard McDee, Jennie Stoller as Annabelle Harborough, Peter Laird as Greville, Stephen MacDonald as George McDee, Christopher Bramwell as Tony Purnell, Patricia Shakesby as Anne Shaw, Debbie Farrington as Veronica Blamey, Valentine Dyall as Radio broadcast voice

Series Four[edit]

Serial no. No. of episodes Original air dates (UK) Writer Director
6 4 19 to 31 August 1982 P.J. Hammond David Foster
The scene for Sapphire and Steel's latest investigation is an abandoned roadside café where time has stopped. However, they find that Silver has arrived before them – which is against normal procedure. The interdimensional operatives remain uncertain as to exactly what they are supposed to be investigating. The key may lie in two humans in the café who claim to be from 1948.

(Note: Many regional editions of TVTimes wrongly billed this story as a repeat. This was possibly due to confusion caused by the changeover from ATV to Central on 1 January 1982, when an ITV contracts change in 1980 resulted in the Midlands ITV region's franchise going from the first company to the second.)

David Collings as Silver, Edward de Souza as the Man, Johanna Kirby as the Woman, John Boswall as Old man, Christopher Fairbank as Johnny Jack

Audio serials[edit]

Series One[edit]

CD # Release date Story Title Writer
1 May 2005 The Passenger Steve Lyons
A steam train enthusiast boards an antiquated 1930s train for a journey with eleven other passengers, and an old book provides the trigger for Time to start playing out a familiar tale that will end in murder. Can Sapphire, Steel and Gold overcome one man's guilt and prevent the inevitable? (4 parts)
Cast: Mark Gatiss as Gold, Hugo Myatt as Philip Burgess, Jackie Skarvellis as Mrs Warburton, Neil Henry as John Andrews, Clare Louise Connolly as The Princess
2 June 2005 Daisy Chain Joseph Lidster
An ordinary house with a seemingly happy family hides a secret that might destroy them, as well as Sapphire and Steel. The operatives must find the right link in a chain of cause and effect – but to break it, someone may have to be sacrificed. (4 parts)
Cast: Kim Hartman as Gabrielle, Lena Rae as Jennifer, Stuart Piper as James, Saul Jaffe as Voice, Emma Kilbey as Voice, Joseph Lidster as Tom
3 July 2005 All Fall Down David Bishop
In an historical area of London, old artefacts are uncovered, and a journal provides a dangerous link to the past. Even with Silver's help, Steel finds the Black Plague reaching out from the mists of Time, while Sapphire risks becoming trapped as part of history itself. (4 parts)
Cast: David Collings as Silver, Michael Chance as Webber, Kate Dyson as Fleming, Suzanne Proctor as Mary, Linda Bartram as The Girl, Neil Cole as Police Officer
4 August 2005 The Lighthouse Nigel Fairs
A newlywed couple move into a lighthouse intending to renovate it, but ghosts from the past, secrets from the present and phantoms from the future hurtle around one another in a time storm, threatening to engulf them all in an inescapable cycle of madness and death. (2 parts)
Cast: Neil Salvage as Old Man, Joseph Young as Adrian, Ian Hallard as Nicholas, Lucy Beresford as Suzy, Michael Adams as Mike, Stuart Piper as Young Boy
5 September 2005 Dead Man Walking Nigel Fairs (based on a story by John Ainsworth)
An unexplained death at a prison is only the first of a series of inconsistencies with Time that Sapphire and Steel are called in to investigate. (2 parts)
Cast: David Collings as Silver, Arthur Bostrom as Richard Hanmore, Jo Castleton as Marian Anderson, Neil Cole as Ian Jackson, Michael Chance as Hammond, Nigel Fairs as Kilsby, Suzanne Proctor as Marcus, Linda Bartram as Mo

Series Two[edit]

CD # Release date Story Title Writer
2.1 July 2006 The School Simon Guerrier
The school has stood for a century, and proud of its history. However, old ghosts are stirring and lessons will be learned… but will Sapphire and Steel become the teachers, or the students? (4 parts)
Cast: Keith Drinkel as Mr Leslie, Lisa Daniely as Mrs Leslie, Victoria Gould as Chatura, James Daniel Wilson as Max
2.2 September 2006 The Surest Poison Richard Dinnick
An auction of timepieces, a 156-year-old man, the theft of the greatest watch ever built and its creator, the greatest watchmaker of all: all linked across history. Time has a plan, one with cataclysmic consequences for humanity unless Sapphire and Steel can stop it. (4 parts)
Cast: Richard Franklin as Webb, Tom Bevan as Breguet, Eric MacLennan as Gerard, Helen Goldwyn as Cecile
2.3 November 2006 Water Like a Stone Nigel Fairs
In an abandoned theatre on Christmas Eve, plans to celebrate a dead playwright's work threaten to lure Sapphire and Steel into a maze from which there may be no escape…

Cast: Lisa Bowerman as Ruby, Nicholas Briggs as Arthur, Lucy Gaskell as The Girl, Suzanne Proctor as Dolly
2.4 January 2007 Cruel Immortality Nigel Fairs
Steel is alone, trapped in a Retirement Home in the middle of nowhere.

Cast: Muriel Pavlow as Mrs P, Daphne Oxenford as Enid, Ian Burford as Stanley, Lois Baxter as Matron, Lucy Gaskell as Carer, Steve Kynman as Carer, Lisa Bowerman as Carer, Nigel Fairs as Carer
2.5 March 2007 Perfect Day Steve Lyons
Steel, Sapphire and Gold find themselves attending a wedding.

Cast: Mark Gatiss as Gold, Victoria Carling as Lydia, Philip McGough as The Captain, Daniel Weyman as Richard, Matthew Steer as James, Caroline Morris as Jennifer
2.6 May 2007 The Mystery of the Missing Hour Joseph Lidster
Sapphire and Steel arrive in Cairo, 1926 to solve an impossible murder.

Cast: Colin Baker as Narrator, Sarah Douglas as Lady Marjorie, Ian Hallard as Arthur, Cate Debenham Taylor as Jane, Ian Brooker as Cornelius, Nigel Fairs as MC

Series Three[edit]

CD # Release date Story Title Writer
3.1 March 2008 Second Sight Nigel Fairs
Sapphire and Steel have gone. Sapphire and Steel are here.

Cast: Blair McDonough as Steel, Anna Skellern as Sapphire, Lisa Bowerman as Ruby, Patience Tomlinson as Mary, Clare Calbraith as Polly, Duncan McInnes as Davey, Angela Bruce as Annie
3.2 April 2008 Remember Me John Dorney
A faded sitcom star wanders through the darkness of a deserted pier, haunted by the ghosts of his dead colleagues.

Cast: Sam Kelly as Eric, Joannah Tincey as Kate, David Horovitch as The Nostalgia
3.3 May 2008 Zero Steve Lyons
The Space Shuttle Aspirant is in a decaying orbit, its engines dead. Time is running out.

Cast: David Collings as Silver, Mark Gatiss as Gold, Angela Bruce as Andrea
3.4 August 2008 Wall of Darkness Nigel Fairs
An abandoned shopping centre in the middle of the night. Is the journey at an end?

Cast: Louise Jameson as Sally, Ian Hallard as Justin, Robert Maloney as Russell, Timothy Watson as Jason, Joannah Tincey as Miranda

External links[edit]