Survivors: Series 1 – Gone Away

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Andrew East continues his journey through Terry Nation's Survivors.


The third episode of Survivors happens to be the first of the original series where I’ve suddenly remembered aspects of the recent remake. Yes, of course, the first episode of both had striking similarities as they dealt with the outbreak of the virus, but in this episode we spend a sizeable amount of time at a supermarket under the jurisdiction of the self-appointed law-keepers seen in the previous episode. I distinctly remember a very similar set-piece in the remake.

Gone Away sees the development of Abby, Jenny and Greg and also the more solid introduction of Talfryn Thomas’s tramp, Tom Price. He has popped up in both previous episodes, but here we have the opening scenes focussed on him and in a way the episode is actually more about his character than the others. We see him acting alone, allying himself with Abby’s group and then, when the wind blows in the other direction, joining up with Wormley’s men.

The threat of Wormley's group is being built up as a recurring menace, but it is interesting to see how one of their group decides to warn Abby, Jenny and Greg allowing them to escape. It shows a determination on Terry Nation's part not to have clear heroes and villains. There are going to be people the main characters meet who are 'good', there are going to be those who are 'bad', but there are going to be many, many more who are simply trying to do the best they can to survive in this new, terrible world. Allying yourself with a group like Wormley's, which we must remember Abby had the opportunity to do in the previous episode, is not necessarily siding with a force for evil, but actually a good way of protecting oneself. Who would we trust in such a situation? What choices would we have?


A much more character-led episode than incident-led one, Gone Away also sees Abby, Jenny and Greg grow closer, as well as a continued quest for a homebase for the group. Initially, the church that Greg and Jenny had found Abby at seems ideal, until Wormley's men take that from them.

Abby's hunt for Peter also continues, with a boy Tom Price had encountered turning out to not be her son and also dead by the time the group return to the house where Tom had found him and an older man.

Not the most gripping of episodes, but one which raises a few questions, continues the main plot threads and strengthens the main characters.

Andrew East is a primary school teacher and father of two, who finds respite in the worlds of Doctor Who, Disney and general geekiness. Unhealthily obsessed with Lance Parkin’s A History, his Doctor Who viewing marathon is slowly following Earth history from the Dawn of Time to the End of the World. He would live in a Disney theme park if given half the chance.

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