Season 1, Episode 1
|Airdate||October 3rd, 1961|
|Writer|| Fred Hoyle|
|Producer|| Michael Hayes|
|Starring||Esmond Knight; Patricia Kneale; Peter Halliday; Noel Johnson; Julie Christie|
"The Message" is the pilot episode of the British science fiction television series A for Andromeda. It was directed by Michael Hayes with a script written by Fred Hoyle and John Elliot. It first aired on BBC One on October 3rd, 1961. The story takes place in Great Britain in the (then-future) year of 1970.
Professor Ernest Reinhart, John Fleming and Dennis Bridger are all scientists in the employ of the Ministry of Defence. They develop a highly advanced radio telescope at Bouldershaw Fell in the Yorkshire Dales. Shortly before its official opening, Doctor Fleming picks up a string of intermittent signals, which he determines originates from the distant Andromeda Galaxy. Examining the signal, Doctor Fleming realizes that the signal is in fact a computer program. He brings his findings to his superiors who compel him to secrecy.
- Peter Halliday as Doctor John Fleming
- John Nettleton as Harries
- Esmond Knight as Professor Ernest Reinhart
- Patricia Kneale as Judy Adamson
- John Murray Scott as Harvey
- Bernard Kilby as Whelan
- Noel Johnson as J.M. Osborne
- Donald Stewart as General Vandenberg
- Brenda Peters as Osborne's secretary
- Frank Windsor as Dennis Bridger
- Mary Chester as Grace
- Peter King as News reader
- Kenneth Kendall as himself
- Terry Lodge as Jenkins
- John Barrett as Oldroyd
Notes & Trivia Edit
- First episode of the series.
- At the time of production, it was customary amongst TV studios to erase recordings after an episode's initial broadcast. As such, no existing master reel of this episode exists and is considered a "lost" episode.
- The story is told in flashback from the recollection of Professor Ernest Reinhart.
- In addition to being a producer, Norman James also works as a production designer on this series.
- This episode was edited by Agnes Evan.