June 13, 1979 on UK TV: The Omega Factor

The_Omega_Factor-1979The Omega Factor (stylized as The Ωmega Factor) is a British television series produced by BBC Scotland in 1979. It was created by Jack Gerson and produced by George Gallaccio, and transmitted in ten weekly episodes between 13 June and 15 August.

Journalist Tom Crane (James Hazeldine) possesses untapped psychic powers that bring him to the attention of the scientists who comprise Department 7, a secret “need to know only” government organisation which investigates paranormal phenomena and the potential of the human mind. The phenomena explored include hypnosis, brainwashing, extra-sensory perception, telekinesis, poltergeist phenomena, out-of-body experiences and spiritual possession.

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Crane joins Department 7 as a means of finding and getting revenge on Edward Drexel (Cyril Luckham), a powerful rogue psychic who is responsible for the death of Crane’s wife in an automobile accident. Crane’s work with the department, and his own psychic gift, lead Crane to suspect a deadly conspiracy by a mysterious organisation called Omega to take over the world using mind control. The members of Department 7 include physicist Dr. Anne Reynolds (Louise Jameson), an old friend of Crane’s wife, and the secretive head of the department, psychiatrist Dr Roy Martindale (John Carlisle). Most episodes see the driven and impetuous Crane in impatient conflict with the cautious Martindale, with Anne (who falls in love with Crane, though she also has a brief relationship with Martindale) caught in the middle. Various subplots develop over the course of the series – notably Crane’s hunt for Drexel, his growing suspicions about the Omega conspiracy and his developing relationship with Anne.

Only lasting for one series of ten episodes, The Omega Factor attracted the criticism of public moralist Mary Whitehouse, who called the episode “Powers of Darkness” “thoroughly evil” because it depicted hypnosis, the supernatural and a man burning to death.

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June 13, 1985 in Doctor Who: The Awakening novelisation published

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The Doctor has promised Tegan that they will visit her grandfather in the English village of Little Hodcombe, in the year 1984, a precision of timing and location that the TARDIS has not always achieved…

When the Type-40 machine comes to rest, the view on the scanner screen only serves to confirm Tegan’s rather low expectations of the TARDIS’ performance.
The most sensible course of action would be to leave immediately – but despite Turlough’s protests the Doctor rushes out to take on a seemingly hopeless rescue mission…

Read more on tardis.wikia.com.

June 13, 1973 on UK TV: We Are The Champions

We_Are_The_Champions-1973We are the Champions was a long-running children’s sports programme that ran from 13 June 1973 to 25 July 1995. There was a full series every year until 1987, and one-off specials every year from 1988 to 1995. It was originally presented by Ron Pickering but, when he died in 1991, Gary Lineker took over as presenter of the remaining one-off specials.

The programme was formatted around a traditional British school sports day, whereTV-UK-06-13-1973 children would compete in various athletics and swimming competitions. Each programme concluded with Ron Pickering shouting to the children “”Away Y’ Go” at which point they would all run and jump/dive into the swimming pool as the titles ran.

The series is poorly represented in the BBC archives, with even the last full series from 1987 not existing in full according to the Kaleidoscope Children’s Guide.

Watch the 1976 opening credits on the Niall Williams YouTube Channel.

June 13, 1970 on UK TV: Albert and Victoria

TV-UK-06-13-1970Albert and Victoria is a British sitcom that aired on ITV from 1970 to 1971. Starring Alfred Marks, it was written by Reuben Ship. It was made for the ITV network by Yorkshire Television.

In Albert and Victoria, Marks plays Albert Hackett, a middle-class man in late 19th-century England. He and his wife Victoria have nine children, and he is used to getting his own way. [Wikipedia]

June 13, 1980 in UK cinemas: Clint Eastwood is ‘Bronco Billy’

“The most outrageous of ’em all.”

Bronco_Billy-1980Bronco Billy is an American film starring Clint Eastwood and Sondra Locke. It was directed by Eastwood and written by Dennis Hackin. [Wikipedia]

Bronco Billy McCoy is the proud owner of a small traveling Wild West show. But the business isn’t doing too well: for the past six months he hasn’t paid his employees. At a gas station he picks up Antoinette, a stuck-up blonde from a rich family, who was left behind without a penny by her husband on their wedding night. Billy likes her looks and hires her as his assistant. She seems to bring them bad luck and the business gets even worse. Cinema-UK-06-13-1980In these hard times she loses her reluctance and starts to like her new way of life… and Bronco Billy. [IMDB]

Watch the trailer on the Warner Bros YouTube Channel.

June 13, 1936 in UK cinemas: “Buster Crabbe” in Flash Gordon

“Amazing STRANGE WORLD ADVENTURES!”

Flash_Gordon-1936Flash Gordon is a science fiction film serial. Shown in 13 chapters, it was the first screen adventure for the comic-strip character Flash Gordon that was invented by Alex Raymond only two years earlier in 1934. It tells the story of Flash Gordon’s first visit to the planet Mongo and his encounter with the evil Emperor Ming the Merciless. Buster Crabbe, Jean Rogers, Charles Middleton, Priscilla Lawson and Frank Shannon played the central roles. In 1996, Flash Gordon was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. [Wikipedia]

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Watch the trailer on the puppetsmetropolis YouTube Channel.

June 13, 1967 in UK cinemas: You Only Live Twice

“…and TWICE is the only way to live!”

You_Only_Live_Twice-1967You Only Live Twice is the fifth spy film in the James Bond series, and the fifth to star Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. The film’s screenplay was written by Roald Dahl, and loosely based on Ian Fleming‘s 1964 novel of the same name. It is the first James Bond film to discard most of Fleming’s plot, using only a few characters and locations from the book as the background for an entirely new story.

In the film, Bond is dispatched to Japan after American and Soviet manned spacecraftCinema-UK-06-13-1967 disappear mysteriously in orbit. With each nation blaming the other amidst the Cold War, Bond travels secretly to a remote Japanese island to find the perpetrators and comes face to face with Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the head of SPECTRE. The film reveals the appearance of Blofeld, who was previously a partially unseen character. SPECTRE is working for the government of an unnamed Asian power, implied to be the People’s Republic of China, to provoke war between the superpowers.

During the filming in Japan, it was announced that Sean Connery would retire from the role of Bond, but after a hiatus, he returned in 1971’s Diamonds Are Forever and later 1983’s non-Eon Bond film Never Say Never Again. You Only Live Twice is the first Bond film to be directed by Lewis Gilbert, who later directed the 1977 film The Spy Who Loved Me and the 1979 film Moonraker, both starring Roger Moore. [Wikipedia]

You Only Live Twice was a great success, receiving positive reviews and grossing over $111 million in worldwide box office.

Watch the trailer on the Movieclips Trailer Vault YouTube Channel.