- The Last Train
:"This article refers to the British TV drama serial. For the Bridge game convention, see
show_name = The Last Train
caption = The superimposed title for "The Last Train" at the start of episode 2
runtime = approx. 50 minutes
science fiction drama
7 April 1999
6 May 1999
num_episodes = 6
imdb_id = 0195471
tv_com_id = 9500
"The Last Train" ("Cruel Earth" in
Canadaand America) is a British six-part post-apocalyptic televisiondrama serial first aired on the ITVnetwork in 1999. It has since been repeated on ITV2in 1999/2001 and on numerous occasions on the UK Sci-Fi Channel. The serial was written by Matthew Grahamand produced for ITV by Granada Television.
United States, the Fox Networkpurchased the rights to produce a new version of the series soon after its original UK transmission. Retitled "The Ark", the idea did not progress beyond pilot stage.
Following a random group of individuals heading to
Sheffield, it followed the survival of a mixed group of passengers on a train who were accidentally cryogenically frozen. Waking up decades later, the passengers find that they are some of the last remaining humans to survive an apocalyptic meteor strike, and are alone in the British countryside. Scientist Harriet Ambrose ( Nicola Walker) was making her way to a top-secret government project known as "Ark", supposedly a project to save humanity. The journey that follows revolves mainly around Harriet's obsession to reach the Ark and her boyfriend Jonathan Geddes ( Ralph Brown) despite not being aware how many years have passed.
Upon being unfrozen, Harriet and her fellow passengers explore a post-apocalyptic Sheffield apparently deserted excepting a pack of rabid dogs. Thawed thief Mick Sizer (
Treva Etienne) then leads the other passengers to his lock-up garage and the group sets off in his Mercedes Sprintervan in search of the Ark and hopefully more survivors.
Cast and Crew
*Guard (Roger Bingham) - Episode 1
*Johnathan Geddes (
Ralph Brown), the man whom Harriet is seeking at "Ark". They had a romantic relationship, the only time we see him is in a video recording up until the last episode. - Episodes 2 and 6
*Karen (Joy Carradice) - Episode 6
Kenneth Colley), father of Gillian and founder of Mareby, he wants the group to stay with him and sabotages the van. - Episode 5
*Darren (Chris Cook)
*Archie (Robert Dunn) - Episode 1
*Danny (Justin Ellery) - Episode 1
Deborah Findlay), daughter of Mark, she's had several still-born babies. - Episode 5
*Sam (John Flitcroft) - Episode 1
*Becky (Abigail Hayes) - Episode 1
*Teenager (Chris Hoyle) - Episode 1
*Miss. Eversleigh (Mary Jones)
*Coats (Josh Moran) - Episode 1
*Behemoth (David Nicholls) - Episode 6 (not credited in episode 5)
*Hornrim (Phil Smeeton) - Episode 6 (not credited in episode 5)
*Midwife (Flo Wilson) - Episode 4
"The Last Train" is often likened to several other British television series, most notably "
Survivors", "The Changes" and " Threads", although this is largely due to the fact that they all revolve around post-apocalyptic Britain, rather than any deeper thematic similarities. Also of similar note is "The Death Of Grass" - filmed as " No Blade of Grass" - by British-born writer John Christopher.
The series' working title was "Cruel Earth", under which it aired in
Canadaand America. Although the railway station shown in the programme that is said to be Sheffield railway stationis in fact the derelict Manchester Mayfield railway stationin Manchester. The camp featured in episode 4 is an old Pontin'sholiday camp in Rhyl, North Wales (Tower Beach Holiday Camp), while the village "Mareby" in episode 5 is Wardle, a small village in Greater Manchesternear to Littleborough and Rochdale. The series was written by Matthew Graham, who went on to co-create and write "Life on Mars", its spin-off "Ashes to Ashes", and also wrote the episode " Fear Her" for the 2006 series of " Doctor Who".
*imdb title|id=0195471|title=The Last Train
* The Guide: [http://www.historyfiles.co.uk/Guide/LastTrain.htm Episode Guide: The Last Train]
* [http://scifi.uk.com/2005/07/26/the-last-train/ Review on scifi.uk.com]
* [http://www.freewebs.com/clactonradio/thelasttrain1999itv.htm "The Last Train" fansite]
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