Why not try the first five Silver Archives at a discounted price, as Paul Magrs discusses his favourite festive viewing, four different authors investigate the various adventures of Sapphire and Steel and Paul Driscoll investigates the Down Under in the first season of Stranger Things?
Sapphire and Steel Assignments I & II
“Let’s waken the dead, shall we?”
A remote cottage, where Time threatens the lives of two children. The war dead return to haunt the living at an abandoned railway station. Sapphire & Steel burst on television screens in 1980 with two iconic slices of folk horror, setting a high standard for the fondly remembered but all too brief series which followed.
Sapphire and Steel Assignments III & IV
“One foot up and the other foot down, which is the way to London town?”</i
A family from the future are hunted by the animal they have inadvertently brought back in time. A man with no face uses photographs to trap the unwary
Sapphire & Steel takes its first step into straight science-fiction, as the agents confront a young couple from 1500 years in the future, and their Changeling baby, before coming up against perhaps the most striking and well-remembered character in the series, the faceless Shape and his nursery rhyme chanting ‘children’
Sapphire and Steel Assignments V & VI
“Time, when it’s been tampered with to this extent, tries to counteract things!”
A murder mystery in a stately home set up to mimic the world of half century previously. A deadly confrontation for Sapphire and Steel (and Silver) in a motorway services café
The only Sapphire & Steel story not written by Peter Hammond, an homage to the Golden Age detective novels of Agatha Christie, is followed by the series finale, a surreal tale which even now, almost forty years later, still divides viewers
Stranger Things Season 1
“You shouldn’t like things because people tell you you’re supposed to.”
In the summer of 2016 the story of Will Byers’ disappearance captivated a largely unsuspecting Netflix audience, leading many to binge watch the entire eight week series in one or two sittings.
Played out across a range of genres, Stranger Things is a coming of age tale, an extended horror flick and a psychological thriller, but above all it is an unashamed love letter to the work of many of the Duffer brothers’ most cherished creators, from composers and producers to authors and games designers.
Paul Driscoll examines how these diverse sources shaped the series and its reception, drawing attention to the prominent role of nostalgia, especially for the 1980s, and the often disturbing real and imagined events that lie behind Hawkins and the Upside Down.
Stranger Dark Skies
‘The Truth is over-rated, John.’
Decades before Scully and Mulder opened The X-Files, another couple had already crossed America investigating the alien, the uncanny and the implausible, all the while attempting to uncover a conspiracy at the heart of the US government. In its sadly curtailed single season, Dark Skies suggested that much of the history of the 20th century we think we know is, in fact, a lie. Aliens have lived, hidden, alongside humanity since the late 1940s, planning invasion via a series of interventions in known history.
Mixing real personalities and genuine historical fact with plausible fictional extrapolations, Dark Skies hugely ambitious five season arc was brought to a premature end after only one year. With access to the show’s creators and never before seen behind the scenes documentation, Matthew Kresal has now created the definitive analysis of a series which ended far too soon.
‘It’s the perfect complement to the series itself.‘ – Bryce Zabel, co-creator of Dark Skies.
Matthew Kresal is an author, critic and long time fan of Dark Skies.