CULT FACTION

For all your cult film, tv, cartoon, comic and video game needs

The Day After Tomorrow

Created by Gerry Anderson and Johnny Byrne, The Day After Tomorrow (aka Into Infinity) was a TV pilot first shown in December 1975. The show takes place in a future where human civilisation is increasingly threatened by rising pollution, environmental damage and the depletion of the Earth’s natural resources.

We are introduced, via a narrator (Ed Bishop), to the Space Station Delta and the lightship Altares – the first Earth spacecraft to “harness the limitless power of the photon”, allowing it to travel at the speed of light: “This could create the effects predicted by Einstein’s Theory of Relativity – effects that could shrink the very fabric of space, distort time, and perhaps alter the structure of the universe as we understand it.”

As we join the Altares it is due to leave Delta on a mission beyond the Solar System to seek out Earth-like planets for possible colonisation. Due to the effects of time dilation, by which astronauts travelling at near-light speed age far more slowly than people on Earth, the ship will be crewed by two whole “family units”.

The first of these “family units” arrives via a United Nations shuttle. They are , Doctors Tom Bowen (Brian Blessed), his wife Anna Bowen (Joanna Dunham) and their son, David (Martin Lev).

Meanwhile, Captain Harry Masters (Nick Tate), engages Altares‘s “photon drive” and the vessel starts its 4.3-light-year journey to the star Alpha Centauri, its first scheduled stop but not before Captain Masters daughter Jane Masters (Katharine Levy) arranges to leaves her dog, Spring, in the care of station commander Jim Forbes (Don Fellows).

Once on its journey, the Altares approaches the edge of the Solar System, Jane and David observe how Pluto appears to change colour from blue to red due to the shortening and lengthening of light waves caused by the Doppler effect. Arriving at Alpha Centauri, the crew launch a series of satellites to relay data back to Earth. Having completed their primary objective, the Masters and Bowen families then agree to push deeper into space.

When Altares encounters a star cluster, Anna tells Jane of Einstein’s accomplishments in the areas of special relativity and unified field theory. Shortly after, the ship is hit by a meteor shower that damages various systems and causes the photon drive to re-activate, hurling Altares through space at such velocity that the travellers are knocked out. A fail-safe brings the vessel, now powerless, to a halt within the gravitational field of a red giant on the brink of supernova. Donning a heat suit, Captain Masters risks his life by entering the reactor core in a bid to repair the drive. He succeeds, and Anna and Jane pilot the ship outside the blast radius of the star before it explodes.

Detecting a signal from Delta, which has taken the equivalent of 15 Earth years to reach them, the travellers are able to plot their position and lay in a course home. However, disaster strikes when Altares is caught in the gravity of a black hole that has formed from a collapsed star. The photon drive is unable to provide the faster-than-light speeds necessary to break free; nevertheless, Anna urges the crew not to give up hope, for she suspects that the object may be a gateway to another universe.

Luckily, her theory is proven correct when, sustaining the various space-time distortions at the event horizon, Altares safely emerges from the black hole – intact, albeit with no way of returning to Earth. As the vessel and its intrepid crew approach a planet, the narrator concludes, “One thing is sure – this is not the final word. Not the end, but the beginning. A new universe, a new hope? Only time will tell.”

Related Posts
Wizards and Warriors

Debuting in 1983 and running for eight episodes (of which three episodes were directed by Bill Bixby), Wizards and Warriors, was a fantasy show which focused on two neighbouring kingdoms Read more

UFO: The Complete Series [BLU-RAY]

Gerry and Sylvia Anderson’s landmark series UFO returns in a stunning new HD restoration, available exclusively to pre-buy now at networkonair.com for £69.99. With its outstanding special effects and high Read more

UFO

UFO was created by Gerry Anderson, Sylvia Anderson and Reg Hill. and was produced by the Andersons and Lew Grade's Century 21 Productions for Grade's ITC Entertainment Company. It ran Read more

Time Taxi

Edawakare (Yutaka Takenouchi) is the driver of the Time Taxi which debuted in October 2014. It ran for ten episodes. The Time Taxi is a special vechicle that can transport Read more

The Renegades (1983)

Created by Lawrence Gordon and Rick Husky, The Renegades ran for six episodes starting in March 1983. It aimed to combine The Warriors/Wanderes gang vibe with a Police drama (in Read more

The Gentle Touch

Created by Terence Feeley, The Gentle Touch was the first police series to show a woman at Detective Inspector level, it starred Jill Gascoine as Maggie Forbes – a tough but Read more

Terrahawks: Volume 3 (Blu-Ray)

Gerry Anderson, the hugely influential creator of Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet, made a spectacular return to puppet animation in the early 1980's with an exciting new series produced with Christopher Read more

Terrahawks: Volume 2 (Blu-Ray)

Gerry Anderson, the hugely influential creator of Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet, made a spectacular return to puppet animation in the early 1980's with an exciting new series co-created with Christopher Read more

Sylvia Anderson passes away aged 88

It is Cult Faction's sad duty to report that Lady Penelope herself, Sylvia Anderson,  has passed away at the age of 88 years old at her Berkshire home following a short illness. Read more

Space: 1999

Space: 1999 is a British science-fiction television series that ran for two seasons and originally aired from 1975 to 1977. It was significant at the time as it was the last Read more

Founded Cult Faction in 2014. Some would describe him as a teacher, writer, dream weaver, and visionary... some would not...

%d bloggers like this: