Press Gang

Series Three

A Richmond Films & Television Production in assocation with Central Independent Television. Episodes are approximately 25 minutes in duration.

Written by Steven Moffat
Series based on an idea by Bill Moffat
Produced by Sandra C. Hastie
Executive Producer for Central Television Lewis Rudd
Music by Peter Davis
Casting Director Liz England
Directors of Photography James Devis BSC
Designer Martin Childs

REGULAR CAST: Lynda Day Julia Sawalha, James "Spike" Thomson II Dexter Fletcher, Kenny Philips Lee Ross, Sarah Jackson Kelda Holmes, Colin Mathews Paul Reynolds [not 1], Frazer "Frazz" Davis Mmoloki Chystie [not 6], Toni "Tiddler" Tildesley Joanna Dukes [1,4,6].

3.01   The Big Hello 7 May 1991

Directed by Bob Spiers
The Junior Gazette is now running commercially, although without Spike who has returned to America. An investigation into a property developer leads Lynda into trouble with the paper's owner, as well as a reunion with a certain visitor from the USA...
GUEST CAST: Matt Kerr Clive Wood, Zoe Toni Barry, Gordon Coles Paul Williamson, Councillor Eric Folkestone Simon Mattacks, David Campbell John Benson, Security Man (Jeff Fielding) Beresford Leroy, Waiter Paul Abbey.

NOTES: The new season brings about a number of changes. Gabrielle Anwar has left the series (Sam is not even mentioned) and the large number of semi-regulars has been phased out; only Clive Wood reappears who would make an annual appearance as Matt Kerr. New footage of the regulars is used in the title sequence and the end credits no longer use voiceovers. A new newsroom set is used; it is identicle to the one from series two, but with a new colour scheme to reflect the fact that the paper is now running commercially. The working title for this episode was Hello, Junior Gazette. As usual, the season opens with a pre-titles sequence.

TRIVIA: Kate is now head of the graphics department (Sophie Newton appears uncredited); she has held the post for a week. Spike has been in California since he left Norbridge.

CONTINUITY: The Junior Gazette's original red telephone (introduced in Photo Finish) can be seen in a frame on one of the newsroom walls. Several more Junior Gazette front pages can also be seen on the walls, including the child abuse special from Something Terrible Part Two and the one about Mr Sullivan from The Big Finish? One of Gordon Coles developments is the Wellside Leisure Complex, presumably the successor to the Wellside Sports Centre that the Junior Gazette was trying to save in Breakfast At Czar's. Another deal concerns an office block in Creslaw Road, which was the one that exploded in The Rest of My Life. Mr Campbell, the paper's owner reappears (he was previously in At Last A Dragon), although he is played by a different actor and his first name has been changed from Cameron to David.

CHOICE QUOTES: Kenny: "I think I'm going to enjoy being grown up."  Lynda: "You were never anything else."
      Lynda: "Why do you always assume I'm incapable of handling anything technical?"  Kenny: "I find it saves time."

3.02   Killer On The Line 14 May 1991

Directed by Lorne Magory
Spike is searching the newsroom for his passport that Lynda has stolen. Sarah is also there; she has been stood up on a date, but is soon distracted when the newsroom receives a series of phone calls from someone who wants to speak to Rod and insisting that he hasn't got the wrong number. It soon becomes clear that this is either a clever hoax, or Sarah is talking to a killer...
GUEST CAST: Jack Jake Wood, David Banks Richard Charles, Police Constable Rasaak Adoti, Mr Loranzo Rick Kennedy.

NOTES: Jake Wood previously appeared briefly in The Rest of My Life.

TRIVIA: Sarah has her own telephone extension (ext. 3), but Kenny does not! Lynda is ext. 6). While he was in America, Spike appears to have been in or around the city of Oakland, as hes wearing an Oakland As baseball cap.

CONTINUITY: On Kenny's bedroom wall we can see a poster for his concert (Rock Solid and The Big Finish?) and the poster for Jason Wood's album (initially feature in Friends Like These but also seen on Kenny's wall in Rock Solid). Kenny's guitar is also visible in the room. Also, an old style Junior Gazette can be seen in the wreckage of Mr Loranzo's shop, and it is mentioned that the Folkestone/Coles story from The Big Hello has had to be dropped due to legal reasons. Spike refers to the time he gave Sarah some assertiveness training in How To Make A Killing.

CHOICE QUOTES Colin: "Spike, baby. I didn't know you were back from Birmingham."  Spike: "America, Colin. I went home to America."  Colin: "No kidding - I thought you were from Birmingham."
      "He doesn't really understand anything that can't be expressed as money." (Lynda on Colin).

3.03   Chance Is A Fine Thing 21 May 1991

Directed by Bob Spiers
Kenny is a philosophical mood when he discovers that he owes his existence to chance. Meanwhile, Colin has been asked out by Judy Wellman, a new and desirable member of the newsteam, and he isn't quite sure what to do...
GUEST CAST: Judy Wellman Claire Forlani, Kelly Aisling Flitton, Clark Kent Tim Dutton, Head Waiter Nigel Williams, Janet Lisa Davies, Lucy Cavey Lee, Head Waitress Samantha Janus (credited but does not appear), Kenny's Grandfather (Sean Philips) Peter Stockbridge (credited but does not appear).

NOTES: Due to the episode over-running the scenes featuring Samantha Janus and Peter Stockbridge were cut, but their credits remained.

CONTINUITY: Aisling Flitton returns as the Dublin Girl from Love And The Junior Gazette and her character is named as Kelly.

CHOICE QUOTES: Judy (after asking Colin out): "You must be thinking that I'm kind of forward."  Colin: "No, you're just the right shape."
      Head Waiter: "Have you booked a table?"  Colin: "Yeah...erm..yes. I've booked a table. Two chairs. I'm meeting someone so two chairs would be good."

3.04   The Last Word 28 May 1991

Directed by Lorne Magory
The newsroom is invaded by a masked gunman who holds the team hostage to protest about a story concerning gun clubs. As a siege develops it becomes clear that one member of the team is not going to make it out alive...
GUEST CAST: Clown (Donald Cooper) Christien Anholt, Detective Inspector Hibbert Hugh Quarshie, Kate Sophy Newton, Trevor Hambly Carl Rigg, Male Reporter Mark Anstee, Female Reporter Emma Forbes, TV Presenter Sally McClaren, The News Team: Rebecca Bradley, Victoria Bradley, Louise Conran, Isabel Diez, Rebecca Hamilton, Maggie Jones, Justine Prior, Pamela Virgo, Hannah Wyn Davies, Nick Dutton, Colin Hazeldean, Robbie Hearn, Jeremy Hodge, Mitchell Knight, Tim Stringer, Dennis Victory, Andy Wright.

NOTES: The idea for this episode arose as a way of writing out Spike when it was thought that Dexter Fletcher was leaving the show. This is the only episode outside of the second season to credit the news team. Sophy Newton gets her own credit as Kate (with a different spelling) although she does no more or less than the other members of the news team.

CHOICE QUOTES: Lynda: "You and me Spike, we're held together by a force even stronger than true love."  Spike: "Which is?" Lynda: "We both want the last word."
      "Do you have to keep pointing at me gun-wise? Erm...It's just that I've got a naturally high fear level. Probably if you were just a bit cross with me, that would do it." (Colin at gun point).
      "Those guys out there haven't quite made up their minds about you. I mean, maybe you're just one of these wacky kids who likes to tease his friends with a loaded firearm. We all know one." (Colin attempts to talk his way out of trouble).

3.05   The Last Word Part Two 4 June 1991

Directed by Lorne Magory
It is the aftermath of the siege and questions are being asked of the police since the gunman was able to escape. However, immediately before the funeral of the person who was called, Inspector Hibbert is given a document that reveals precisely what happened inside the newsroom...
GUEST CAST: Donald Cooper Christien Anholt, Detective Inspector Hibbert Hugh Quarshie, Billy Homer Andy Crowe.

NOTES: Andy Crowe makes his only proper appearance as Billy Homer in the last three seasons of the show.

TRIVIA: In his clue to Spike, Billy mentions the mystery writer, a reference to the character's introduction in Interface.

CHOICE QUOTES: Colin: "Can I just interject at this point?"  Donald (with gun): "Shut up."  Colin: "Fine. That's valid."
      "What do you know? Twelve o'clock and we've had a gun siege already." (Spike).
      Lynda: "Kenny, just do as I tell you."  Kenny: "That is the nature of our friendship."

3.06   Holding On 11 June 1991

Directed by Bob Spiers
Spike and Lynda find themselves unexpectedly attached when they investigate a stage hypnotist with a cruel sense of humour. Which is inconvenient, since Spike is due to return to America with his girlfriend...
GUEST CAST: Zoe Toni Barry, Mister Maringo (John Hardy) Steve O'Donnell, Alec Conell Paul Mark Elliott, Moira Conell Rebecca Stevens, Shoe Man Louis Hillyer.

NOTES: On its original transmission this episode was preceded by a warning from presenter Tommy Boyd due to its frequent use of the phrase "Divorce the bitch", which is quite strong language for a "children's" programme.

TRIVIA: Spike dreams that Lynda is the editor of the Daily Chronicle (a post she got in the year 2005) and has an employee Damien Campbell, presumably a descendent of Junior Gazette owner David Campbell.

CONTINUITY: Toni Barry reappars as Zoe from The Big Hello. Colin's gunshot injury from The Last Word Part Two flares up again when his scheme is discovered.

CHOICE QUOTES: "You're something special, Lynda Day. Not easy. No way easy. But very very special." (Spike).
      Zoe: "Regrets?"  Spike: "No, it's like a story which came to a natural end." (Which appears to imply that this was intended to be the last episode, which was not the case since series four was made immediately afterwards).

This guide is copyright Matthew Newton and may not be reproduced without permission.

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