Here’s a show that I’m sure many of you will have forgotten about until reading this. Luna was an ITV childrens Sci-Fi show, which given it was also a comedy still had a surprisingly dark streak to it.
The year is 2040, and the Earth as we know it has become an uninhabitable mess through pollution, nuclear war and God knows what else. People know live in the Efficiecity, a completely enclosed environment kept safe from the ravages of the outside world. People no longer live in traditional family groups, but instead are made artificially in “batches” and are then sent to live in artificial families in homes known as Habivirons.
The show is named after the main character, a young girl, or “female diminibeing”, who gets named Luna by the other members of her forced household, although her real name is the decidedly unflattering 72-batch-19Y. The other members of the group are Gramps, who is an aging punk who still remembers what the world used to be like, Andy, the habiviron’s android, Mother, the habiviron computer, and Brat, a young boy who’s name is fittingly given to him by Gramps – though Brat doesn’t know what the word actually means!
Luna was created by ex-Monkee Mickey Dolenz (who was also behind the Metal Mickey TV series) and was written by Colin Prockter and Colin Bennett, who also played Andy (and was the Mr. Bennett from Take Hart too). Luna was played by a young Patsy Kensit in the first series, and Joanna Wyatt in the second series, whilst Brat was played by Aaron Brown, who later appeared in the BBC kids drama Seaview alongside Blue Peter presenter (and now Most Haunted star) Yvette Fielding.
Another interesting character was 80H, the sector Bureaubeing, who arrived with a fanfare wearing a big black suit of the kind that might be on sale where Darth Vader does his clothes shopping. Whilst he was all threatening monotones and voice distortion to start off with, he often ended up removing his helmet because he got too hot and broke out in a “film of exuded moisture”, revealing a moustached and spectacle wearing office worker.
The show could be a little hard to follow at times due to the amount of Technotalk, the futuristic language based on English that all the characters spoke in (with the exception of Gramps that is). The aforementioned dark streak was also quite prominent, with characters being faced with instant death for little things like losing an ID card.
A fine show, and one that has inexplicably failed to get a release on DVD yet, despite recordings of it still apparently existing in the vaults somewhere. Until it does get a much deserved re-airing then, there’s always the fan site Lunaviron to have a look at, and there’s a few bits up on YouTube, like the clip below…