of the Burn Up - Part One
Written by Bruce Stewart
Simon and Liz exit the time barrier and find themselves back
in the Ministry Field in 1970. As the two make their way back
home, Simon reluctantly finds himself thanking Liz for returning
to find him. Liz says that she didn't. Simon tells her that they
must prevent the future they have seen from happening.
At the Skinner's home, Jean answers the telephone.
In the living room, Frank Skinner is trying to understand Simon
and Liz's incredible story. He reels off the incidents they have
related including the fact that he was frozen in a block of ice
in 1990 and that Liz met her future self! He makes light of it
but Simon and Liz remain adamant about the future.
In the hallway, Jean is arguing with the person on the other
end of the phone line and tells them they can't go over her head
in the matter... She slams the phone down.
Simon challenges Mr. Skinner with the fact that he thinks they've
made the whole story of the Ice Box up. Skinner agrees in a way
and adds that he thinks they may have just had a nasty dream.
Jean enters and points out to Frank that they've been warned about
the future and should possibly take it further. She is certainly
more open-minded and reminds Frank about a conversation he had
with her recently about how business last month hadn't been good.
Frank makes light of it and asks when he is due to go broke! This
upsets Liz. Frank wants to put an end to all the business with
the time barrier. So does Jean but she reveals that she has just
spoken to Commander Traynor on the phone. Frank reveals that Traynor
has been calling them non-stop since the children re-entered the
time barrier. Jean states that Traynor wants to see Simon (just
Simon) in Whitehall immediately. Jean has refused him permission
but Traynor threatened to make the request official. She also
says that the Commander has started to frighten her! Simon and
Liz exchange worried glances.
In an office in Whitehall, Commander Traynor is studying a document
of maps relating to transport and power systems. He takes a phone
call, which turns out to be a summons from a minister. He places
the document on his desk and hurriedly leaves the office.
Outside his office, a secretary shows Simon Randall in through
another door perplexed why the Commander isn't there. The secretary
thinks Simon is thinking of joining them and she tells a mystified
Simon "this is where the action is!" Simon points out
that the only reason he's here is because the Commander sent for
him. The secretary leaves Simon in the company of a collection
of science magazines. Simon is more interested in the document
folder on Traynor's desk. "Project A/TH/4 - Technological
Master Plan, Section 3, Ecology and Development". He has
barely read the first page when Traynor re-enters the office.
He gently accuses Simon of having an enquiring mind as he takes
the file from Simon and places it out of sight inside the desk
drawer. Simon apologises but Traynor dismisses it and says he's
glad to see him again. He offers him a chair and tells his secretary,
Miss Stebbins to hold his calls for the next twenty minutes. He
apologises for having made Simon come to see him for a change
but he's very busy at the moment since "a long cherished
dream" has recently become reality. He reveals that he has
been invited to form a new ministry. Simon, failing to understand
the importance of this, half-heartedly congratulates him. Traynor
quickly moves onto the subject of the Ice Box. Simon begins to
explain about Liz's mother and father's involvement in the base
but Traynor isn't interested in those sorts of details. Simon
then details the personnel and events of the Ice Box to a partially
bemused Traynor. Simon also explains that Morgan C. Devereaux
was there. Traynor reminds Simon that his friend and colleague
died in 1969. Simon solves the mystery when he reveals that Director
Devereaux was a genetically engineered clone of the original Devereaux.
Things are starting to fit into place for Traynor. He seems to
forget Simon is in the room for a moment but suddenly re-awakens
from his thoughts, to remind Simon firmly that the icy future
he saw was only one of many possible outcomes. He changes the
subject to the longevity drug. Simon admits that he failed to
get hold of the formula for it. An angry Traynor doesn't believe
him and accuses Simon of holding back. Traynor says he now has
a position of power. Simon explains that Devereaux never wrote
the formula down and intended to pass on the secret through a
new clone. Both died when the Ice Box froze over. Traynor reluctantly
admits he has no choice but to believe his story. He then tells
Simon that the information he now possesses could be regarded
as classified. He warns the boy to stay out of scientific matters
and to remain on "this side of the time barrier." An
angry Simon reluctantly agrees. A patronising Traynor offer him
At the Skinner's house, Liz runs down the stairs towards the
front door. She stops for a moment to think before leaving the
Simon is in the Ministry field walking near to the location of
the time barrier. He looks up at the sign ordering the public
to "Keep out" and ignores it. He stands looking through
the fence as the familiar electronic sound of the time barrier
warns him he is close to it. Behind him is Liz. She watches him
for moment. Simon raises his hands to feel for the barrier. Seeing
this, Liz calls out to him warning that he'll only get himself
into trouble again. Simon is surprised to see her and she explains
she followed him here. Simon tells her that he wants to go back
through the barrier because Traynor warned him not to. Last time,
he was pleading with him to go, this time..... the opposite. Simon
also reveals how his opinion of Traynor has changed. The two children
argue. Simon is adamant that he will go through the barrier alone
in order to see what Traynor doesn't want him to see. Liz pleads
with him not to. With a cheery "See you in jail then",
Simon re-enters the time barrier and vanishes. As Liz turns to
leave him to his fate, she hears him cry out and the sound of
a splash. Calling out to him, she feels for the barrier. She too
disappears through it.... followed by the sound of her surprised
scream and another splash.
On the other side of the time barrier, Liz is now standing waist
deep in the water of a jungle creek. She is helped out of it by
an equally wet Simon. He tells her to go back home and get some
dry clothes. Liz's fascination with their new location causes
her to ignore his complaints as he tells her to "Get lost!"
She comments on the flowers, which she has never seen before and
the fact that it is hot. Suddenly the two hear the sound of what
appears to be electronic gunfire. Simon pulls Liz to the ground.
Out of the jungle steps a man in safari gear. He has a futuristic
backpack on and is firing some kind of gun into the trees. He
is unaware of the hiding children. After firing off a couple of
shots, the man disappears back into the jungle. Simon and Liz
crawl out of hiding. Simon wants Liz to go back home but Liz is
fascinated by their new location. She thinks they are in the tropical
jungle and wanders off to explore. Simon raises his eyes to the
sky in disbelief...
In another part of the jungle, there is a clearing with a collection
of roughly made dwellings. A parrot is perched on one of the roofs
whilst other animals are in small cages. A tall black woman is
struggling to dig at the dry hardened ground with a gardening
trowel. She stops and turns her face to the hot baking sun. She
carefully pours a little water from a large jug over the area
she was digging at. The jug emptied, she walks across the village
and disappears into one of the dwellings. Shortly after, Liz and
Simon enter the village. Liz is excited at discovering a native
village. Simon is more cautious. The woman returns having filled
her water jug. Liz and Simon duck out of sight. Liz wants to talk
to her but Simon pulls her back. Despite his protests, Liz moves
across and tries to introduce the two of them to the woman. As
Liz struggles to communicate in broken English, the woman just
stares at the two children. After a moment, the woman introduces
herself and much to the children's surprise, she speaks in perfect
unaccented English. She thinks Liz and Simon might be tired after
their journey through the jungle believing they have come "...all
the way from the urban complex." Her name is Vera and English
is her native tongue. She wants them to "check in" with
the "group mother". Another woman's voice is heard and
Vera indicates that the group mother is now in the art room.
The art room is in one of the jungle dwellings and is littered
with pieces of art both painted and carved. At its centre is a
long-haired woman, chiselling away at a large stone statue. Stepping
back from her handiwork, she tells herself to "find the form"
before returning to her chiselling. Behind her, the drape over
the entrance way is pulled aside as first Simon, then Liz gingerly
enter the hut. Simon asks the sculptress if she's the group mother.
Without turning the woman says she is. She asks them their age
and sex... Simon is 16 and male. Liz is 16 and female. The woman
pauses to admire and comment on the sculpture she has created.
As she turns, Liz immediately recognises her face. It's Beth.
The woman says she is Beth. Liz wants to know what she is doing
here. Beth tells her that she lives here and that she actually
runs the place. She doesn't recognise Liz or Simon and wants to
know what THEY are doing here. Liz mentions the Ice Box. Beth
doesn't know what she is talking about. She thinks the children
may have had a "nasty experience at the hands of the technocrats."
Liz explains that they are Simon and Liz. At first Beth treats
them as two strangers whom she has just learnt the names of. As
she turns away, it suddenly dawns on her who the children really
are - Liz Skinner and Simon Randall. She stares at them both for
a moment... before bursting out laughing. Simon thinks she's hysterical
and calls upon Liz to get some water.
Nearby, a white suited, bespectacled man is cautiously making
his way through the jungle. He hears the sound of the electronic
gunfire and ducks for cover.
Inside the hut, Beth is still laughing as she drinks some water
tended by Vera with Simon and Liz looking on. Beth reveals to
the children that she gave up messing around with the time barrier
years ago. She says she "probably couldn't even do it these
days." Simon asks what the year is. Beth states that it is
1990. He asks where they are. Much to his surprise, she tells
him that it's England. "Darkest Buckinghamshire!" A
klaxon is heard and Vera indicates that a signal is coming through.
She goes across to a glowing screen set into the hut's wall. Beth
explains that the video scanner is the only technology that is
allowed in the village. It's there for their own protection...
Beth further explains to Liz that the village is a school for
"misfits". The video screen reveals the white suited
man skulking through the jungle. Vera isn't impressed that it's
him again. She asks Beth if she can make him stay away. Beth starts
laughing uncontrollably again and asks whom he thinks the man
outside is. Simon smiles, but hasn't a clue. A wholly amused Beth
then tells him the "best part of the joke".... that
the man outside is him... "1990 style". She also reveals
he no longer has a name.... only a number. 2957. The smile wiped
off his face, Simon removes his glasses for a closer look at his
Out in the jungle, the figure does the same...
Complete cast for part one
Cheryl Burfield (Liz Skinner), Spencer Banks (Simon Randall),
Iris Russell (Jean Skinner), Derek Benfield (Skinner), Denis Quilley
(Commander Traynor), Mary Preston (Beth), David Graham (2957),
Teresa Scoble (Miss Stebbins), Merdel Jordine (Vera).
Script Editor Ruth Boswell
Scientific Adviser Geoffrey Hoyle
Designer Gerry Roberts
Director Ron Francis
Producer John Cooper
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