Spaceshock! Episode 2 Commentary

[posted 8:00 am, 30 October 2014]

As the violence gets worse, Mandy’s frustrations briefly boil over.

(CONTENT WARNING: This story will deal with sexual violence and mental illness. See Help Links for more information about these issues.)

KATY: This is Spaceshock episode two. We’re feeling a bit green what with all the blood and monsters and fast cuts, but the show must go on.

MANDY: I should add that we haven’t really been sick. Katy was only joking.

KATY: (MAKES VOMITING SOUNDS)

MANDY: Oh, Katy. That’s horrid. … And that was a joke too. If you could see us, you’d see that Katy is quite alright really. That’s a very big gun, isn’t it?

KATY: Yes, it was much better than the old one. Splat!

MANDY: Good shot.

KATY: It won’t be the last of them.

MANDY: You’re very full of beans here.

KATY: I wasn’t paying attention and I ran into a door frame. It’s often said that we had wobbly cardboard sets, but we didn’t. It was solid wood and it hurt.

MANDY: This is a very big spaceship coming over.

KATY: It’s only a model.

MANDY: It’s a very good model. They spent a lot more on the effects in this series.

KATY: And a lot less on everything else.

MANDY: People’s expectations were so much higher. Because of the films.

KATY: And the Americans had ruined children’s programmes. It was all talking helicopters and bad acting.

MANDY: The acting wasn’t as important in that sort of thing. It was all to do with the shooting. And the cars blowing up.

KATY: It wasn’t really drama. It was just to make children want toys.

MANDY: Well, yes. Vicky was obsessed with She-Ra. We had to buy her all the figures. And the castle. I was so tired of watching it with her. The writing and acting were appalling.

KATY: And there you were, sitting at home knowing you could do so much better.

MANDY: I love my children to bits and I wouldn’t give them up for the world. I just wish it hadn’t been either or. Men didn’t have to choose.

KATY: It isn’t fair. You could have been-

MANDY: The show must go on. What’s happening now?

KATY: Danny La Rue wants to blow something up. And cut. Now this is better lighting.

MANDY: I think this is on the other spaceship. They must be the baddies, which is why they’re in the dark.

KATY: Who are they?

MANDY: I’m not sure.

KATY: I don’t recognise the voices. Will we see their faces later on?

MANDY: I’ve got a feeling we only see their hands.

KATY: I suppose it’s cheaper.

MANDY: Eww, more corpses.

KATY: … That’s an even worse pun.

MANDY: Yes, it’s in very bad taste.

KATY: Oh, it’s these two again.

MANDY: Are you sure you don’t know them?

KATY: I’ve no idea.

MANDY: You’re not teasing me again, are you?

KATY: No. Honestly.

MANDY: They’re rather funny. It’s not all gory horror. Oh. It is.

KATY: Cut. Lots of them! Cut. Urrrrghh!

MANDY: Oh dear. Perhaps Mary Whitehouse was right to complain about this.

KATY: If she’d only complained about this. But she complained every week. She was the miserable old woman who cried wolf.

MANDY: The writer was very bloodthirsty. I’m not sure who it was because they used a pseudonym.

KATY: I think I can guess, but we’re not supposed to say in case it causes trouble.

MANDY: I should explain that although Derek Pedderton gave the new series his blessing, he didn’t write much of it. He was busy developing something for the other side, and it took a long time to get started.

KATY: Yes, I think he’d seen how popular Robin of Sherwood was, and he wanted to do the same sort of thing for Boadicea. They asked me to be in it, but I wouldn’t have done it for anything.

MANDY: You didn’t fancy running up and down the Pennines in your underwear?

KATY: I’d already had hypothermia once. That was enough. At first, or so I’ve heard, Derek wanted all the barbarians to fight in the nude!

MANDY: That would never have been shown.

KATY: No, not even on Channel Four.

MANDY: And I should also have said that this series was produced by Sarah Stimlott.

KATY: A woman in charge at last.

MANDY: She was so lovely.

KATY: I used to think she was grumpy, but I suppose I wasn’t always on my best behaviour.

MANDY: She was under lots of pressure from the people upstairs. Some of them didn’t want any science fiction because it was so expensive.

KATY: I think they were frightened of the government too.

MANDY: Well, perhaps we shouldn’t go into that.

KATY: Because they’re still frightened of the government.

MANDY: Danny’s being awfully bossy.

KATY: I love the idea of putting a panto dame in something like this. It makes it more fun.

MANDY: I think it upset some of the fans at the time.

KATY: God, yes. Never remind grown men that they’re watching a children’s programme.

MANDY: These days lots of fans love this sort of thing. They’re all different really. Some of them are very sweet.

KATY: Yes, and some of them are very clever.

MANDY: We had a good crowd at the weekend, didn’t we?

KATY: Oh, absolutely. I did enjoy it.

MANDY: Oh! That made me jump.

KATY: She’s a good screamer, whoever she is.

MANDY: This is very unusual because I didn’t usually have a gun.

KATY: Everyone has guns in stories like this. Cut. Running through corridor. Cut. Monsters. Cut. Bang!

MANDY: We’ve got it open at last.

KATY: That was a good death. Whoever he was.

MANDY: Ah! I think it was Emmerdale Farm, but a long time after I did it.

KATY: … Neutrons don’t have polarity. I could have told them that when I was fifteen.

MANDY: I hated doing the bafflegab. It was so hard to remember.

KATY: Run. Cut. Shout. Cut. Models. Cut. More running. Big red button! And … nothing happens.

MANDY: It’s still broken? Oh, a loose wire. She’s very brave here.

KATY: She broke it in the first place. Whoosh! Wow!

MANDY: That was the paintbox thing, wasn’t it?

KATY: It must have been to do that. The gloved hands aren’t very pleased. You’re right, we haven’t see their faces.

MANDY: And that’s the end of Spaceshock. I have to say, perhaps I didn’t enjoy this one quite as much as some of them.

KATY: It must be bad.

MANDY: Next time, we’ll be going underground. Until then, it’s goodbye from Amanda Cadewell.

KATY: And goobye from- Arrgh! It’s got me!

MANDY: For the viewers at home, Katy is only teasing. Please don’t have nightmares.

KATY: Not my head!

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