BBC Home

Explore the BBC

25th April 2015
Accessibility help
Text only
My Science Fiction Life

BBC Homepage

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

The Quatermass Experiment


TV: The Quatermass Experiment

Creator: Nigel Kneale


Scary Space Serialarrow icon

DVD - it's a wonderful thing isn't it?
more from darrenhf

terrifyingarrow icon

1953 at the age of nine.
more from knight-gkla

In Depth

The Quatermass Experiment

A failed rocket mission brings terror to 1950s living rooms.

This landmark production had an immeasurable influence on British television science fiction. Amazingly, however, it didn't find favour with the critics of the day.

The real judges were the public who tuned in in record-breaking numbers each week to be scared half to death as ill-fated astronaut Victor Carroon mutated into something decidedly nasty.

This was the era of early manned flights into space. Writer Nigel Kneale brilliantly exploited a public fear that some nasty germ (or worse) might be picked up in space and brought back to Earth in this grisly tale. British government rocket scientist Quatermass (Reginald Tate) sends a man to the stars who returns contaminated and then slowly transforms into a walking vegetable patch with attitude.

Made on a shoestring budget and with no effects department, the climactic giant "gunge" monster was actually both made and performed by Kneale himself on live television!

A highly successful movie version quickly followed, made by Hammer. A 90-minute remake, starring Jason Flemyng and David Tennant, was broadcast live on BBC Four in 2005.

Work nominated by knight-gkla.

Text © Radio Times/BBC Worldwide

Paul1974 recommends...

My Science Fiction Life contributor paul1974 recommends his favourite stories from the site.

"Five stories, five links, five reasons," he says.

Armaduras on Doctor Who
Summarises my favourite show and my experiences better than me...

posterMPD05 on Day of the Triffids
A great precis and recommendation.

Jeff Wayne on The War of the Worlds
Dun Dun DUNNNNNN!! This man is a legend.

U187657 on The Adventures of Luther Arkwright
Not only has it inspired him, but he met his inspirer.

BobSteele on Crime Traveller
Things like this can only be made due to the unique way the BBC is funded...

About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy