UFO comp
was the first live action television series created by Gerry and Sylvia Anderson and produced by Century 21 Productions. It was inspired during the making of Doppelgänger and aimed at an adult audience; showing relationship difficulties, drug use and a rather macabre alien intention. which initially lead to airing times being set at 11:00pm. 26 episodes lasting 50 mins each, were first aired 16th September 1970.


Producers Gerry Anderson & Reg Hill
Format Gerry & Sylvia Anderson, Reg Hill
Century 21 Fashions Sylvia Anderson
Special Effects Derek Meddings
Music Barry Gray
Script Editor Tony Barwick


Set ten years in the future (1980), a race of aliens from a dying planet make individual attacks on the Earth in order to harvest human organs. SHADO (Supreme Headquarters Alien Defence Organisation), a covert operation hidden under the Harlington-Straker Studios movie studios in England and headed by Commander Ed Straker who is a former United States Air Force Colonel and astronaut, who poses as the studio's chief executive.

Supported by an off world "Moonbase", and a fleet of submarines, "Skydiver", the approaching UFOs are initially detected by an Earth orbiting satellite named "SID" (Space Intruder Detector). Lines of defense ar as follows; attempts are made in space with three Interceptors launched from Moonbase. A second attempt is made in the Earth's atmosphere with a fighter plane, "Sky One", launched from Skydiver. Landed UFO's are tracked down with ground Mobiles.

SHADO continuously attempts to thwart the alien invasions, and their various strategies to disable SHADO; while maintaining SHADO's security, funding and maintaining operatives general well being. Commander Straker's seconds in command are Col. Alec Freeman, Col. Paul Foster, and Col. Virginia Lake. Moonbase is often commanded by Lt. Gay Ellis.


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Main Cast Edit

Commander Ed StrakerEd Bishop
Colonel Paul FosterMichael Billington
Colonel Alec FreemanGeorge Sewell
Colonel Virginia LakeWanda Ventham
General James Henderson Grant Taylor
Doctor Doug JacksonVladek Sheybal
Lieutenant Gay EllisGabrielle Drake

General Cast Edit

Gabrielle Drake
Gabrielle Drake 2
Lieutenant Nina Barry Dolores Mantez
Lieutenant Joan Harrington Antonia Ellis
Lieutenant Keith Ford Keith Alexander
Captain Lew Waterman Gary Myers
Captain Peter Carlin Peter Gordeno
Ayshea Johnson Ayshea Brough


Lieutenant Mark Bradley Harry Baird
Lieutenant John Masters Jon Kelley
Miss Ealand Norma Ronald
Doctor Shroeder Maxwell Shaw
Lieutenant Gordon Maxwell Jeremy Wilkin
Lieutenant Sylvia Howell Georgina Moon
Lieutenant Catherine Scott Anouska Hempel
  • Dr. Shroeder - Maxwell Shaw
  • Dr. Frazer - Basil Moss
  • Captain Steve Minto - Steven Berkoff
  • Lieutenant Carol Miller - Andrea Allan
  • SHADO Operatives - Maxwell Craig and Diana Reeves
  • Lieutenant Gary North - Mark Hawkins
  • Voice of SID - Mel Oxley
  • Voice of Voiceprint Identification - Jeremy Wilkin

Episode ListEdit



  • Mysteriously, purple hair and alien descriptions are not revealed in the series.
  • A considerable amount of the cast's Christian names were used for the characters.
  • The Gull-wing doors had been around on the Mercedes 300SL since 1954 but where not again produced for road cars until the DeLorean DMC-12 in 1981
  • Innovations include: Cordless phones, Car telephones (cell phones), spacecraft launched from aircraft, extensive use of computers in day-to-day life (also predicting and analysing human behaviour), electronic fingerprint scanning, voice print identification, spy satellites, meta data, left-hand drive cars driven on the right-hand side of the road in the UK.
  • Topical features include; Racial harmony, effect on operatives working in secret, space waste, toxic waste and the illegal farming of body parts.


  1. Stage nameAyesha full name Ayshea Brough