Kaldor City
Story 3: Hidden Persuaders
Magic Bullet
Story 3: Hidden Persuaders
Written by Jim Smith and Fiona Moore
Directed by Alistair Lock and Alan Stevens
Production and Music by Alistair Lock

Peter Miles (Landerchild), Russell Hunter (Uvanov), Nicholas Courtney (Packard, Scott Fredericks (Carnell), Paul Darrow (Iago), Patricia Merrick (Justina), Tracy Russell (Blayes), Trevor Cooper (Rull), Brian Croucher (Cotton), Jim Smith (Crane), David Bickerstaff (Manzerak), David Collings (Paulus), Robert Lock (Guido), Alistair Lock (Bextor), Tony Lang (Voice), Mark Thompson (Leighton), Alison Taffs (Caitlion), Scott Andrews (Corda), Alan Stevens (Berganza), Mickey Barnard (Damon), Jasmine Breaks (Zala), Bruce McGilligan (Voc Voices).

“Nothing is yet known of the terrorists’ demands, but Security remain poised to act instantaneously on any information received.”

Terrorism is on the increase and -- amidst a media frenzy -- hostages are being taken. The Church of Taren Capel are fighting back and nobody in Kaldor City is safe. Who is behind the cult’s remarkable success, and what is their next target? Most importantly, when it comes to politics, who really has the most to gain?

Kaldor City: Hidden Persuaders uses characters and concepts from Chris Boucher’s Doctor Who novel Corpse Marker to tell a gripping tale of corruption and media manipulation.

  • The third in a series of original CD drama which use the characters, situations and settings from Blake’s 7 and Doctor Who.
  • Released: November 2002
(drn: 57'41")

Uvanov continues to consolidate his power in the Company by having Iago assassinate anyone who may potentially pose a threat. However, Iago requests a day off to visit his dying mother, and Uvanov thus appoints security chief Cotton as his acting bodyguard in Iago’s absence. During his brief tenure, Cotton discovers that Iago and Justina have been scheduling sexual liaisons during working hours, and accidentally blows up Uvanov’s arboretum during a training exercise. Meanwhile, security topmaster Stenton Rull investigates a 0.5% deduction on his payslip referred to as “the Larson project”.

Ostensibly for insurance reasons, Uvanov demands that Iago allow flymaster Guido to transport him to his destination. Instead of going directly to Zone 5, however, Iago orders Guido to stop off in Zone 7, where Iago plants explosives on something the size of a storm miner. When Guido demands an explanation, Iago kills him, and then flies out to Zone 5 himself to kill a man named Leighton. Later, Uvanov also demands an explanation, and Iago claims to have learned that Leighton, who bore a private grudge against Uvanov, was in league with a terrorist group called “the hands of Capel”. Iago has now dealt with the problem pre-emptively, or so he tells Uvanov.

Meanwhile, the Church of Taren Capel, under the leadership of a man named Paulus, is preparing for their next attack, with the aid of former security officer Blayes. The plan is to blow up oxygenator 4, knocking out air for the entire eastern district of Kaldor City and causing civil unrest. Blayes, Crane and Manzerak intend to slip in with false IDs, plant their bombs and get out -- but unfortunately for all concerned, their attack coincides with a security drill. The Tarenists thus end up trapped in the control room with two terrified technicians as hostages, but a third technician, Bergenza, manages to flee to safety. Security forces surround the area, and Rull takes charge of the situation.

This does not suit Uvanov, since Carnell manipulated Blayes into joining the Tarenists so that he’d have someone in charge of the cell whose actions he could predict and manipulate. If she is killed, they’ll have to start from scratch. Uvanov thus orders Carnell to devise a strategy to get Blayes out in one piece. Carnell arranges for Firstmaster Landerchild to strike a deal with the Tarenists, offering to send in Iago to negotiate the release of the hostages. Once he is inside, Iago informs Manzerak that Blayes has been working for Uvanov all along, using the Tarenists to kill Uvanov’s political enemies to increase his power within the Company. Manzerak turns on Blayes, and while he’s distracted, Iago overpowers him and gives Blayes the opportunity to follow his instructions and save her own life. Blayes shoots Crane herself, and Iago snaps Manzerak’s neck -- and Iago then kills the two hostages himself to ensure that they won’t be able to identify Blayes afterwards.

Uvanov declares the incident to be an act of war, and prepares to implement a series of far-reaching “security initiatives” in the name of the war against Tarenism -- including releasing the names of the Tarenists’ families to the grieving friends and families of their “victims”. Though Carnell advises him to leave well enough alone, Uvanov also orders Iago to have Bergenza killed and framed for helping the Tarenists, just in case he happened to catch a glimpse of Blayes before fleeing. Meanwhile, Blayes -- who apparently escaped from the oxygenator by disguising herself as one of the dead security guards -- reports to her real boss... Firstmaster Landerchild.

Source: Cameron Dixon (with thanks to Fiona Moore for corrections!)

Continuity Notes:
  • This story opens with an announcement of the deaths of the characters Padil, Dis Pitter, and Cailio Techlan from Corpse Marker. Rull’s investigation into the Larson project pays off in the next audio, Taren Capel.
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