The Champions: Season 1, Episode 11

The Dark Island (4 Dec. 1968)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Sci-Fi | Thriller
6.4
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An American submarine crew find a rocket launcher on a small Pacific island and are attacked by Oriental soldiers. A plane flying over the same island is shot down and so the agents of ... See full summary »

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Title: The Dark Island (04 Dec 1968)

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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
Stuart Damon ...
Alexandra Bastedo ...
William Gaunt ...
Anthony Nicholls ...
Vladek Sheybal ...
Max Kellor
...
Withers
Alan Gifford ...
Admiral
Bill Nagy ...
Controller
Ben Carruthers ...
Perango (as Benito Carruthers)
Andy Ho ...
Kai Min
Richard Bond ...
Radar Operator
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Storyline

An American submarine crew find a rocket launcher on a small Pacific island and are attacked by Oriental soldiers. A plane flying over the same island is shot down and so the agents of Nemesis investigate. Sharron and Craig pose as ship-wreck survivors and are taken prisoner by the island overlord Max Kellor and his band of Chinese warriors. Richard meanwhile lands by parachute and discovers a slave army working at a rocket site. The missile is pointed towards America and the plan is to make the Americans think the Russians have fired it. Richard is also captured and must pretend that he does not recognize the other Champions if they are to escape and save the world again. Written by don @ minifie-1

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4 December 1968 (UK)  »

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(RCA Sound Recording)

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1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Island of no return
29 July 2012 | by (Ambrosia) – See all my reviews

'Withers' ( Brandon Brady ) is part of a team of agents investigating a small Pacific island where people have mysteriously disappeared. In a jungle clearing, he discovers an underground silo containing a short-range nuclear missile. He is then captured and his companions ( played by an uncredited Nick Tate and Anthony Ainley ) are shot to death. Shortly afterwards, U.S. fighter jets vanish while flying over the same area. NEMESIS sends the Champions to the island; Richard lands by parachute, Craig and Sharron masquerade as ship-wreck victims. They meet the island's owner 'Max Kellor' ( Vladek Sheybal ), who plays at being the genial host. But he is concealing a deadly secret; in league with 'Kai Min' ( Andy Ho ) of Red China, Kellor intends tricking the U.S. ballistic early warning system into thinking that the Russians have launched a preemptive nuclear strike. They will then retaliate in kind, leading to World War 3.

Tony Williamson's episode is the closest the show ever got to a 007- type story; the one it most resembles is 'Dr.No' with its secluded island and Oriental villain. Presumably the Reds intend hiding in bunkers until after the fall-out clears, we never find out for sure. Richard gets some of his best action scenes - organising a break-out of prisoners, leaping over a high, barbed wire fence, knocking out guards and so on. Craig causes the missile to self-destruct. Even Sharron gets to administer a punch or two. Possibly the only negative point is the obviously fake-looking jungle set. Even then, it is not really much of a liability. World War 3 became a problem for the Champions again in a later episode - 'The Final Countdown'.

The sleepy-eyed Sheybal had acted in two Bond films - as the chess-playing genius 'Kronsteen' in 'From Russia With Love' ( 1963 ) and as 'Le Chiffre's representative' in the spoof version of 'Casino Royale' ( 1967 ). Andy Ho played chef 'Ah Syn' in 'It Ain't Half Hot Mum'. Speaking of which, blink and you will miss an uncredited appearance by the late Dino Shafeek, who was the 'Char Wallah' in that same show. Nick Tate went on to play Eagle pilot 'Alan Carter' in 'Space:1999', while Anthony Ainley put on a false beard in 1980 to menace 'Dr.Who' as 'The Master'.

Directed by Cyril Frankel.


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