Curtis's cover is blown and Kessler orders a security ring around Brussels and a massive search to trap Curtis. Curtis poses as a bus driver for a Hitler Youth day trip in a desperate attempt to flee...
In the years after World War II, the tables have turned: ambitious, cruel Gestapo-officer Ludwig Kessler, the most implacable hunter of every opponent to the Third Reich, can no longer deny... See full summary »
The prisoners in Colditz Castle make many attempts to escape captivity from the arrival of the first British prisoners after Dunkirk in 1940 until the liberation of the castle by the ... See full summary »
Brian Ash is a young lieutenant who is assigned to a UXB unit in the early days of World War II. UXB (UneXploded Bomb) is the signal that an aerial bomb has not exploded. Ash's job is to ... See full summary »
After the Japanese invasion of Singapore in February 1942, a group of British, Dutch and Australian women are held in a Japanese internment camp on a Japanese-occupied island between Singapore and Australia.
The mysterious murder of an environmental activist leads her straight-laced father, an Inspector of the local police force, through a haunting revelation of the murkiness of the British ... See full summary »
Mary Mulvane, an 18 year old Irish girl, is transported to New South Wales for seven years for doing little else than protecting her own property. She must endure the horror of transport to... See full summary »
Greg Callan's cousin David Callan is the top agent/assassin for the Security Service (British counterintelligence), but he is an embittered man who performs his duties "for Queen and ... See full summary »
During World War II, Albert Foiret runs both a café in Brussels, where locals mix with the Nazi occupation forces, and a network of the Belgian resistance called Lifeline, devoted to the evacuation of downed Allied pilots to Britain. He and his secret 'army' constantly risk their own lives and those of many others to find the pilots, hide, nurse and prepare them for the long, dangerous journey out of the Reich under the Nazis' noses. It is a never ending cat-and-mouse game against specialized German hunters, the gentlemanly Luftwaffe officer Major Erwin Brandt and the ruthless Gestapo officer Sturmbannfuhrer Ludwig Kessler, whose devotion to Hitler's cause is boundless.Written by
Gerald Glaister pitched the series to the Controller of BBC1 when he shared a lift with him at the BBC Headquarters. By the time the lift reached the Controller's floor, Glaister had himself a deal. See more »
After seeing Secret Army recently for the first time on UK Drama, I was blown away by it's brilliance. I had read lots about it, but never realised that the show was as impressive as it is.
The characters are all very well drawn and the series views World War II from many angles. We don't only get to see the heroic and valiant efforts of the allies and resistance - the Germans, the Belgian police and ordinary citizens of the Low Countries are all represented, and more than anything else the series shows that the war affected different people in vastly differing ways. Nothing is black and white. Albert, our hero in the series, is a flawed hero: he can be greedy, dominating and possessive (Albert is a far cry from Hepton's role as a Nazi Commandant in Colditz, some years earlier). Major Brandt of the Luftwaffe is a German but not like Kessler, a Nazi. Brandt is simply a member of the armed forces who is only doing his job. Secret Army can be commended for not presenting the heroes and "villains" as mere stereotypes. Special mention must also go to Clifford Rose who play the head of the Gestapo in Belgium, Ludwig Kessler - the inspiration for Herr Flick in the spoof series Allo Allo. Rose is magnificent as Kessler and the character is written as a man who is completely and utterly devoted to the Fatherland and the Fuhrer.
Secret Army, along with other greats like Colditz and I, Claudius is an example of the great drama serials that the BBC no longer produce. These days we seem to be stuck in a never-ending cycle of police and hospital drama serials. Secret Army was transmitted at prime-time on BBC1 when it was first shown: how many period dramas do we ever see on our screens these days? At very best we get a Jane Austin type adaptation, and that would only ever be broadcast on a Sunday night.
Why don't the BBC take the chance to make something as daring as Secret Army? I'm sure that a viewing public tired of the same old shows would thank them for it.
I hope that UK Drama will show the spin-off series Kessler now!
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