Welcome to Cult TV

Cineology ® presents the official CULT TV ® website.  

Join us for the latest on the best in extraordinary fictional television and film from the past, present and future, and analysis on its cultural impacts.

Find out about the amazing facts in fiction, and discover the truth about what's really going on in the World around us...

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Tuesday, 07 March 2017

A Town Like Alice - out now on Blu-ray and DVDVirginia McKenna and Peter Finch star in this BAFTA-winning drama set in South East Asia during World War II, adapted from a novel by Nevil Shute. Jean Paget (McKenna – “Born Free”, “The Cruel Sea”) is a British secretary who is part of a group taken prisoner by the Japanese army. The men are trucked off to a prison camp whilst the women and children are ordered to march, under guard, across the region to either seek refuge or a means of getting to Singapore.

Aghast at the prospect of a 50 mile hike, the women then find they are not welcome at their destination and are told to continue walking for hundreds of miles, criss-crossing Malaya as it was then known. Exhausted, thirsty and hungry, members of the group fall ill and their future looks bleak. One glimmer of hope lies in a chance encounter with an Australian POW (Finch – “Network”, “Sunday Bloody Sunday”) who takes risks to come to their aid.

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Wednesday, 01 March 2017

Spike Milligan - Q Volume 2 out nowWhat are we going to do now? When it came to 1979, Spike Milligan moved on to giving the BBC a series called Q8, and the play on the fact it sounded like Kuwait. Indeed, the following year, the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation was formed, and decided to adopt the moniker ‘Q8’ for its petrol stations! This series of six episodes, along with 1980’s Q9 half-dozen, are released on an unsuspecting public for the first time by Simply Media. The Kenny Everett Video Show had made its debut in 1978, and 1979 saw the debut of Not the Nine O’ Clock News, so this was very much a climate of testing the limits of TV comedy, which veteran Spike had done for his entire career.

As recent releases of Spike’s radio trailblazer The Goon Show state on sleeve notes: “Some of the humour reflects the era in which the episodes were broadcast.” Today we have the likes of Family Guy and American Dad really testing the boundaries of good taste, with sharp intakes of breath as you wonder how on Earth they manage to get away with some of the barbs laced throughout those shows. As with the release last year of Q5 – Q7 on DVD, this follow-up pair of Milligan series takes aim at everyone - no religion, race or public figure is safe – be it royalty, politicians, or celebrities. Words now off limits are used regularly, but it’s never with malice or aggression. Cultural Studies students will no doubt find plenty of material to pontificate over in this run of episodes.

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Monday, 13 February 2017

Connections with James Burke out now on UK DVDHe was immortalised by The Human League in their 1980 song “The Black Hit of Space”, where Phil Oakey implored we “get James Burke on the case”. At that point in time, the impact of the first series of Connections had been seismic. First broadcast in 1978, the ten part series had cemented Burke’s place not only in our British culture, but he was then exposed to a worldwide audience. He had become a national icon through working on Tomorrow’s World from when it began in 1965 through to 1971, as well as being a cornerstone of the BBC’s coverage of the Apollo space missions, and fronting The Burke Special (1972-1976).

Why was Connections such a ‘big thing’ at the time? Much like Burke’s own philosophy regarding inventions and progress, it joined together elements of history, science and technology to show how seemingly disconnected disciplines fed off each other to create major breakthroughs. This created a positive feedback loop, and explains the ever-faster rates of change that we see in our society today. The biggest surprise in all this is why it has taken so long to finally get a UK release for the series in any shape or form. Thanks to Simply Media, it is time to revisit not just this but all the incredible, and in places prophetic, work of James Burke.

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Wednesday, 08 February 2017

Probatiion Officer - Volume 1 of existing episodes out on DVD nowEvery now and then, a DVD release comes along of a TV series that has vanished into the memory hole. Remembered by few, the perceived wisdom is that if it was worth taking notice of, then the trivia books would pay close attention to it. In the case of Probation Officer, we have a series which has slipped through the net. An ATV production starring John Paul (Doomwatch) and Honor Blackman (The Avengers), even from that small snippet interest is immediately on high alert.  This initial batch of surviving episodes, (unfortunately the archive holdings are patchy at best) come from 1959 and 1960. Anyone who thought in that era it was all very “Cholmondley-Warner” when dealing with fiction rooted in reality will be in for a shock.

Whether it’s drugs on the streets, gangs out of control, or even a very early inter-racial screen kiss (beating Star Trek’s “Plato’s Stepchildren” by a good nine years), even today there will be many surprises as to what topics are brought into sharp focus. Admittedly, the attitudes of many of the characters are set in another era, where racism and sexism were par for the course, but this adds a blunt reminder of how much things have changed over the nearly six decades which have passed since these episodes were put into production. For any students of sociology or cultural studies, there are a stream of dissertations which could be written from this sample of a dozen episodes.

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Monday, 23 January 2017

The Flower of Gloster comes to DVDThe mission: Guide a 72-foot narrow-boat through 220 miles of canals from Wales to London in 10 days. The crew: Three cheeky kids from the Doherty family, after daddy Doherty is injured. What (else) could possibly go wrong?! This cheerful 13-part tale from 1967 has the distinction of being the first Granada Television series to be made in colour, even though it was initially broadcast in black and white.

The Doherty family are up against a rival boat manned by the Evans clan. The stakes are high as the first party to deliver their boat get the deal, and the Evans are not playing fair. Sabotage is not the only problem facing Dick, Liz and Mike Doherty, however, as they must also contend with mechanical faults, a haunted wood, Mike’s uncanny disappearing act and a girl they crash into along the way. Think ‘Swallows and Amazons’ only on a canal.

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Tuesday, 31 January 2017

It is with regret that we announce that after just two episodes of its new series, CULT TV ON YOUR RADIO has had to go on hiatus, as the producers seek a new outlet to broadcast the programme from. Hosts alex:g and Justin Allum had brought the show back via Tulip – The Station You Can Really Call Your Own – for the new series, broadcasting fortnightly on Tuesdays from 7.00pm to 9.00pm GMT. It was just about to move to a weekly slot of Thursdays 7-9pm when disaster struck.

You were able, if based in the Spalding and South Holland area of the UK to hear the broadcasts on 107.5 FM, or alternatively from anywhere in the world via the TUNE IN website and App. Unfortunately, the previous management of the station decided to take the entire station off-air, including our programme which was all about extraordinary fictional television and movies being previewed and reviewed.

All is not lost, as the two shows which were recorded are preserved for posterity. You can find the podcast of the first edition, which includes the announcement of the winners of the CULT TV AWARDS 2016, on MIXCLOUD BY CLICKING HERE. The second show contained information on the new series of 24, the revival of Twin Peaks, and also when some of your favourite shows will be starting their runs again in the UK. You can listen to it on MIXCLOUD BY CLICKING HERE.

 

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Monday, 16 January 2017

Metropolis - out now as a Limited Edition DVD and Blu-ray and soon as a Standard release“Metropolis” is an anime film indirectly and loosely based on the 1927 Fritz Lang classic movie of the same name, by way of a 1949 manga reimagining. Written by “Akira” legend Katsuhiro Otomo and directed by Rintaro (“Galaxy Express 999”), the film portrays a humble boy’s relationship with a state of the art robotic girl as they make their way through the weird, wonderful and sometimes frightening city of Metropolis.

Metropolis is built on three levels, with janitor robots and the poorest of the poor at the bottom, and the rich elites living above ground in a towering skyscraper. A terrorist/vigilante organisation called the Marduk resent the encroachment of robots in every quarter of life and plan to fight back aggressively, whilst a powerful industrialist called Duke Red is constructing a weapon of mass destruction to enforce his rule over everyone.

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Thursday, 12 January 2017

CARD 1 - Click to get the first big Sherlock Bingo sheet to downloadTo add to the excitement of the final episode of the current season of Sherlock this Sunday (15 January 2017, 9.00pm, BBC1), here we present a pair of “Sherlock Bingo Cards” to print copies off and play along. See which common happenings occur in this episode, and then you can do similar with other episodes of the series, even Elementary too, and other versions both classic and new, big screen and small screen. Click the pic opposite to get a big version of the first Bingo card (the other is below in the full article).

We are delighted that Paddy Power Bingo worked with Cult TV to put the idea together, and here we have the chance to add an extra dimension to this story. Make things more competitive by choosing a line, either horizontal or vertical, which you fancy as being the first to be filled in, and then get ready to mark off what happens or what is said. Get other members of your viewing group to take part, and roll a dice to decide the orider which everyone picks their line - each person takes a different one, horizontal or vertical! The winner is the one who gets most hits on their chosen line, or is first to tick off their entire line. Oh, and by the way, the "Deerstalker" and "Pipe" in the centre is for when you see either of these on-screen.

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Monday, 09 January 2017

Fright Night - out bow on dual format Blu-ray and DVD“Fright Night” is a horror-comedy that riffs on Hitchcock’s paranoia classic, “Rear Window”. High school student Charley Brewster (William Ragsdale – "The Reaping") witnesses the arrival of his new neighbour… in a coffin! Then some prostitutes are murdered and Brewster is convinced that his strange neighbour (Chris Sarandon – “The Nightmare Before Christmas”, “The Princess Bride”) is responsible, but nobody will believe him.

To make matters worse, Jerry - the fanged freak - turns up on his doorstep, endangering both Brewster, his family and friends. Desperate to protect them, he approaches one of his idols, a washed-up TV horror star called Peter Vincent (the iconic Roddy McDowall – of the original “Planet of the Apes” and “The Poseidon Adventure”) who he prays will be able to transfer his on-screen skills into the real world.

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Monday, 16 January 2017

The last time Cult TV had the chance to announce its awards via a broadcast was in 2014. Now, three years later, we got to herald the return of a bi-weekly run of CULT TV ON YOUR RADIO at a new home with the results of the 2016 vote, the 23rd annual prize giving. It was broadcast llive between 7.00pm and 9.00pm GMT on Tuesday 3 January 2017 via Tulip Radio. Broadcasting to Spalding and South Holland in Lincolnshire, your usual Awards host alex:g returned, and to ring the nostalgia bells, the co-host was be Justin Allum, a well-known face from the entire run of the Cult TV Festival from 1994 to 2007. You be able to catch the show fortnightly, featuring this dynamic duo. YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE PODCAST OF THE SHOW BY CLICKING HERE.

The Cult TV Awards trophies from 2007

In fact, aside from alex:g’s wife Sarah and the man himself, Justin was the only other person who was on the production team for the entire 14 years of the Weekender – celebrating extraordinary fictional television in what was a non-stop residential package with a multi-stream programme which always ran from Noon Friday to Noon Monday, in either seaside holiday parks or various plus hotels around the country. You can tune in to the show every other Tuesday at 7.00pm to 9.00pm via 107.5 FM in the Spalding or South Holland area, or via the web by CLICKING HERE for Tune In.

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