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The Omega Factor - The Complete Series [DVD]

4.1 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: James Hazeldine, Louise Jameson, John Carlisle
  • Directors: George Gallaccio, Eric Davidson
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Dd Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 20 Jun. 2005
  • Run Time: 488 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0009UCET6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 105,802 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

All ten episodes from the controversial sci-fi series which aired in the 1970s.

Review interesting early forerunner of The X-Files. --Fortean Times --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The Omega Factor in that same to the definition of "cult television" perfectly: made originally in 1979, by BBC Scotland, it rests on the 1970s fascination with parapsychology and the paranormal, and even name checks Uri Geller in the first episode. 1979 was the height of the Graham Williams period of Doctor Who, and this series marks the first major TV performance of actress Louise Jameson who played Leela in the series from 1977 to 1978.
So far so good. The production values here are as solid and dependable as the 1970s interiors depicted in the show. What lifts this program above any other show of the late 70s that ran for only one season, and has languished without a repeat for 32 years, is a pervasive sense of fear and dread that is genuinely chilling.

There's not much on the series on the Internet, but you will often find it being described as a precursor of The X-Files. This is undoubtedly true, with James Hazeldean's lead character discovering his own psychic abilities under the aegis of a shadowy government organisation known as Department 7. The male-female pairing of Tom Crane and Louise Jameson's character Ann Reynolds prefigures Mulder and Scully, and the series even has a story arc concerning the pursuit of the malign psychic Drexel, responsible for the death of Crane's wife Julia. The series has deeper ancestors, most tellingly the Richard Burton movie The Medusa Touch which supplied the theme of the misuse of telekinetic powers, and Nigel Kneale's 1972 drama The Stone Tape.

The series only ran for 10 episodes, and despite strong indications that a second series was being considered, the BBC ran foul again of Mary Whitehouse, and there are strong suggestions that the series was cancelled due to pressure from the National Viewers and Listeners Association.
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Format: DVD
'The Omega Factor' is terrific, suspenseful and eerie television.

Some of the criticisms this show has received tend to come from those who are expecting the fast-paced high-octane thrillers that are churned out for modern audiences with short attention spans.

For more discerning viewers, this series will provoke thought, chill to the bone and achieve a sense of disquiet.

The casting is superb. James Hazeldine is mesmerising as Tom Crane, the man on a mission, battling the superior forces of both the supernatural and the higher organisations of people who desire control and the power to manipulate all.

Louise Jameson as Anne Reynolds provides a perfect foil to his angst with her scientific prowess and cool and calm exterior - a forerunner to Agent Scully of 'The X Files' if ever there was one.

The highlight of the series is the superb fifth episode entitled 'Powers of Darkness' which genuinely sent shivers down my spine. One can understand why Mary Whitehouse complained about the show being 'Thoroughly evil'.

The DVD includes a fascinating booklet about the series, a documentary (running at 25 minutes) with interviews with one of the writers, one of the directors, the producer and the man behind it all, Jack Gerson. Also interviewed is his daughter who played the terrifyingly enigmatic Morag.

Superb television drama. A must buy for fans of high-quality supernatural drama.
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The bottom line: flawed, but still well worth buying. It's delightfully creepy, with some genuinely shocking moments, and I just love that theme music. Some of the episodes are excellent, some so-so, and some distinctly lacklustre. I felt the characters sometimes got out of their scrapes too easily, while on the other hand there were occasions when Crane could have used his psychic powers to overcome the opposition but didn't. One or two stories seemed ultimately inconsequential - did they manage to clear the safe house of the negative psychic manifestations or didn't they, and if the Army had developed a weapon which could knock out enemy troops by psychologically attacking them using sound waves I would have thought the implications of that were quite considerable, yet the device isn't heard of again. Or, as in "Out of Body, Out of Mind" or "Double Vision", you had to wait until the next episode to find out what was really going on or get the explanation as to how the plot was resolved, which I find isn't a satisfactory dramatic device and in fact is rather annoying, even if you could have worked things out for yourself without much difficulty. The series also lost its way at times, becoming sucked into the issue of mind control through drugs, which is only what intelligence agencies, and others, have tried to do plenty of times either in fact or fiction and needn't have anything to do with paranormal powers (the drugs themselves - like the sonic weapon - are a PHYSICAL rather than a psychological factor, whatever their consequences).Read more ›
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Format: DVD
I can't actually remember watching this back in the '70s - possibly 'cos I was only fairly young and so my parents would've said NO, however, thanks to DVD I have now had a chance to watch this BBC masterpiece.

To the viewer in the USA who thought it was rubbish - the plots led from one episode to the next and they were all interwoven into a good, solid series, something that American scriptwriters don't seem to possess - they seem (even today) to rely on lots of gunfire and car chases when they seem at a loss as to what their characters should be doing.

Over in the US there are very few programmes which could ever hope to equal this piece of work. No, "Auntie" may not have had the huge budgets of her American counterparts back in the 1970s, but she did have brilliant scriptwriters and actors/actresses.
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