27 August 2011 | twobaglife
Original themes but zero-budget production values
The Tomorrow People is an unusual series about the next evolution of humanity. Children are being born with the abilities of telekinesis, teleportation, and telepathy, and call themselves Tomorrow People. They cannot kill anyone, and hide their abilities from the saps (homo sapiens, the normals) while getting drawn into adventures by aliens and time travelers determined to exploit their abilities.
It's a startling and refreshing take on kids shows at the time. The Tomorrow People are fully aware of what they are when they "break out" and gain control of their powers, and are aided by Tim, their biological computer. It's very much like a kid's version of Doctor Who but with less horror and nihilism. Good performances from the cast of children actors help as well.
There are problems though. The budget and production values are bad even for seventies television, most noticeable in any monster or spaceship shots. There's a weird homoeroticism to it as well, most noticeable in the story arc "The Medusa Strain" with a bit part from Star Wars actor David Prowse as a loincloth wearing android. Many of the early arcs are split among four or more episodes which lead to a lot of padding and wasted time.
The stories are still oriented towards a kids audience, so adults may find themselves wishing for more depth. While the plots are still fresh the show is dated fairly heavily now, and a lot of the impact is lost since many kids shows cover SF themes. Still, for those of us that watched it as kids on Nickelodeon in the late seventies/eighties, it was a mind-expanding experience, right down to the psychedelic opening sequence. Worth a rental if you like British SF or want to remember it if you watched again, but there are too many flaws to make it a classic.