UFO (1970–1973)
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SHADO - an acronym for Supreme Headquarters Alien Defence Organization - is located beneath a supposed film studio in the English countryside and run by Commander Straker, who poses as a ... See full summary »



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Gordeno ...
Cmdr. Ed Straker (as Edward Bishop)
Grant Taylor ...
Basil Dignam ...
Cabinet Minister
George Sewell ...
Lt. Bill Johnson
Gary Myers ...
Skydiver Capt. Lew Waterman
Michael Mundell ...
Lt. Ken Matthews
Lt. Mark Bradley
Keith Alexander ...
Jon Kelley ...
Skydiver Engineer
Georgina Moon ...
Skydiver Operative Lt. Sylvia Howell


SHADO - an acronym for Supreme Headquarters Alien Defence Organization - is located beneath a supposed film studio in the English countryside and run by Commander Straker, who poses as a film producer. When an Unidentified Flying Object attacks a plane in which Straker's deputy Colonel Freeman is travelling it is shot down and investigated. The body of an alien is found and discovered to have transplanted human body parts, seemingly from a trio who disappeared in nearby woods a decade earlier. It is part of the alien plan to take over the Earth to study and imitate humans. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Action | Sci-Fi





Release Date:

16 September 1970 (UK)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


One of the (very) few things the series got scientifically correct - or, at least hypothesised as such, is the view an alien species coming to earth would most likely have of humans. Many movies and tv shows which have looked at an alien life form coming to earth portrayed them looking at us with benevolence - akin to an adult to a small child. But, actually, this is most likely not how an alien life would look upon humans. In this episode, after the alien has died, Straker calls in his subordinates to hypothesise about the aliens. He asks; 'why', and he says that a(ny) life-form which can travel the immense distances involved in space travel must be highly intelligent - far above where humans currently are. In Straker's words; 'they look upon us not with animosity, but with callousness, as we look upon our animals whom we depend on for food'. This, is, in fact, a correct view. Their ability to understand (any of) our languages would be as difficult for them, as we have found it to communicate with the 'less-intelligent' life, here on earth. They would look at earth for it's resources, and humans as a lower life form. See more »


A copy of the Daily Express is shown dated "24 August 1980". However that date was a Sunday and the Daily Express (published Monday-Saturday) would not have been published that day. See more »


Edited into Invasion: UFO (1974) See more »

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User Reviews

A promising start to the series
18 June 2007 | by (England) – See all my reviews

"UFO", like other Gerry Anderson productions, manages to tie the viewer up in a web of excitement by the end of the opening credits. With fast edited shots of incredible aircraft, spaceships and vehicles, beautiful women and aliens and a brilliant theme, it's nearly impossible to forget what it feels like to watch an episode of this show.

The first episode begins in a violent manner with a bloody attack on three individuals in a forest by an alien equipped with a machine-gun. This is then followed by an attack on senior air force dignitaries by a UFO, leaving only one survivor. Anderson sets the tone for the show here. This is television for adults but with enough toys to keep the children happy.

In Anderson's first episode, there are attractive ladies accompanied by a sexy rendition of the UFO theme, chunks of "grown-up" dialogue and shots of the two main cast members smoking.

The late George Sewell is excellent as Alec Freeman, a character who's happy to drink whisky and smoke, chase women and generally act like a '70s hero would be expected to act.

Ed Bishop is the more detached Ed Straker. There's something almost unearthly about Straker, he's an enigmatic individual.

While Anderson himself admits the pace of this opening installment is a little uneven and plodding, it's not a bad episode.

8 out of 10.

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