UFO watch (Episode 15 – E.S.P.)

60269782

 Written by Alan Fennell
Directed by Ken Turner

John Croxley (John Stratton) has a problem. He’s able to read minds, but this E.S.P. isn’t something he can control and it’s driving both him and his wife to despair.

He comes into SHADO’s orbit when a UFO crashes into his house, killing his wife. Being in the presence of SHADO operatives, particularly Straker, means that he instantly knows everything about SHADO and how it operates. Straker and Freeman track the increasingly unstable Croxley down to the ruins of his house. Can they reason with him? Difficult, when he knows everything they’re thinking.

John Stratton is rather good as the twitchy, sweaty Croxley but E.S.P. is an episode that doesn’t really satisfy. There’s the customary wonderful modelwork (the UFO crashing into the house, for example) but it does fall a little flat.  However, there’s a nice spooky feel to the story and Straker, Freeman and Foster all get a share of the action so it’s not totally a damp squib.

Croxley’s proximity to the UFO meant that he was able to read the aliens’ thoughts, so through him we learn something of their intentions. It’s pretty vague stuff, but it helps to make them slightly more tangible as characters.

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