The Day of the Triffids aired on BBC1 in 1981 and became one of those SF television series that broke out of the genre ghetto and became part of popular culture, fondly remembered by many who saw it back then. Perhaps this shouldn’t be a surprise since the novel of the same name by John Wyndham had been a bestseller, remaining in print since it debuted in 1951. The series follows the story of a group of survivors living in a post-apocalyptic world after a meteor shower has rendered most of the population blind and given rise to deadly, venomous plants called Triffids. The main protagonist is Bill Masden, a young farmer who has ironically retained his sight due to being protected by bandages after a Triffid attack. As he navigates the dangers of post-apocalyptic England, he must also deal with the threat posed by the plants, which are able to move on their own and attack humans.
Like the book, the series explored themes of survival, adaptation, and morality. Produced by David Maloney, directed by Ken Hannam and adapted for television by Douglas Livingstone, it starred John Duttine, Emma Relph, and Maurice Colbourne.
I had an excellent time recording this episode with Rik Hoskin, and Chris and Ella Burton and we got unexpectedly deep in places when it came to the moral challenges faced by the characters. You listen to our debate by finding Very British Futures on YouTube, Spotify, Apple, and many more platforms. Or go to its page on the podcast website.
In other news, I am currently back on the sound desk at Bolton Little Theatre for the upcoming play Flamingoland which runs 20th to 27th May 2023. Written by ex-Coronation Street actor Deborah McAndrew, it’s the story of two sisters, their daughters, and a local pest control officer. Mari is terminally ill and spends her days organising her funeral and her will. Her sister Bridie wants her to focus on making the most of her remaining time. But the whole family is poisoned by a secret from their teenage years. Will bringing it out in the open help them to heal or is too late? Sound effects for this one are fairly domestic. Probably the biggest challenge was filming a video sequence at the open mic night at the Doffcocker Inn, Bolton, for the finale. But it gave me a chance to put a new 4K Canon XA50 camera and shotgun microphone through its paces.