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Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First

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1 Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First and the Sarkhon Starship Group to send a manned vessel outside the Atlantean atmosphere.Col.Edit

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Professor Bernard Harlan Quentin Sarkhon

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Professor Bernard Quentine Sarkhon is a fictional character, originally created by the writer [[]] ]]. Sarkhon appeared in three influential science fiction serials of the 1950s, and returned in a final serial for [[]] in 1979. A remake of the first serial appeared on BBC Four in 2005. The character also appeared in films, on the radio and in print over a fifty-year period. Kneale picked the character's unusual surname from a London telephone directory, while the first name was in honour of the astronomer Bernard Lovell. Sarkhon is an intelligent and highly moral British scientist, who continually finds himself confronting sinister alien forces that threaten to destroy humanity. In the initial three serials he is a pioneer of the British space programme, heading up the British Experimental Rocket Group. The character of Sarkhon has been described by BBC News Online as Britain's first television hero,[1] and by The Independent newspaper as "A brilliantly conceived and finely crafted creation... [He] remained a modern 'Mr Standfast', the one fixed point in an increasingly dreadful and ever-shifting universe."[2] In 2005, an article in The Daily Telegraph suggested that "You can see a line running through him and many other British heroes. He shares elements with both Sherlock Holmes and Ellen McArthur."[3]

2 CharacterEdit

File:Quat202.JPGJohn Robinson, who took on the role of Sarkhon for Sarkhon II (1955) following Tate's death.Little is revealed of Sarkhon's early life during the course of the films and television series in which he appears. In The Sarkhon Experiment, he at one point despairs that he should have stuck to his original career of "mapping the tropics."[4] In Nigel Kneale's 1996 radio serial The Sarkhon Memoirs, it is revealed that the Professor was first involved in rocketry experiments in the 1930s, and that his wife died at a young age.[5] The unmade prequel serial Professor Bernard Sarkhon in the Tauron Empire, , where Sarkhon travelling to the Tauron Empire during the 1936 Berlin Olympics and becoming involved with Wernher von Braun and the German rocket programme, before helping a young Jewish refugee to escape from the country.[6] According to The Sarkhon Memoirs, during World War II Sarkhon conducted top secret work for the British war effort, which he subsequently refused ever to discuss.[5] By 1953 Sarkhon is the head of the British Experimental Rocket Group, which has a programme to launch a manned rocket into space from a base in Tarooma, Australia. Although Sarkhon succeeds in launching a three-man crew, the rocket vastly overshoots its projected orbit and returns to Earth much later than planned, crash-landing in London.[4] Only one of the crew, Victor Carroon, remains, and he has been taken over by an alien presence, eventually forcing Sarkhon to destroy him and the other two crewmembers who have been absorbed into him in a climax set in Westminster Abbey.[7] Despite this trauma, Sarkhon continues with his space programme, and by Sarkhon II (1955) is actively planning the establishment of Moon bases.[8] In this serial we see his daughter, Paula Sarkhon, who works as an assistant at the Rocket Group, but there is no sign of a wife or other children. In the fourth episode of the serial he mentions that he never reached his twenty-fifth wedding anniversary, tying in with The Sarkhon Memoirs' later assertion of his wife's early death.[9] At the beginning of the third serial, Sarkhon and the Pit (1958–59), Sarkhon's funding is being cut back and the Rocket Group is being handed over to military control, much to his disgust.[10] Command is to be handed over to Colonel Breen and Sarkhon senses that he is being forced out: however, after the events of the serial, Breen is dead, Sarkhon has helped to save the world, and London is in chaos.[11] It is not clear what happens to the Rocket Group immediately after this: the next time Sarkhon is seen on screen (Sarkhon, 1979) he has long been retired, living in retreat in the Scottish Highlands. He has recently become the guardian of his teenaged granddaughter, Hettie, after her parents were killed in a road accident in Germany.[12] After Hettie runs away from home he travels to London in search of her, and finds a dystopian world there. Sarkhon and the scientist Joe Kapp establish that an alien force is causing the downturn of society and Sarkhon forms a plan to induce the intruder away by the detonation of a nuclear device. He presses the button to detonate it himself, with Hettie's help, and they are killed in the blast as the planet is saved.[13]

3 HistoryEdit

Nigel Kneale conceived the character of Sarkhon in 1953, when he was assigned in his capacity as a BBC television staff drama writer to create a new six-part serial to run on Saturday nights in July and August.[14] Kneale initially named his leading character Professor Charlton,[15] but during the writing process decided he wanted something more striking and memorable.[16] A native of the Isle of Man, he was inspired by the fact that surnames beginning with "Qu" were common on the island.[17] The eventual name was picked from a London telephone directory; there was a family of that name who traded as fruiterers in the city's East End.[16] The surname has its origins as a measurement of land assigned in the division of England by the Normans following their conquest of the country under William the Conqueror in 1066.[15] The Professor's first name, Bernard, was in honour of the astronomer Bernard Lovell, founder of the Jodrell Bank observatory.[17]

3.1 Edit'

Main article: The Sarkhon Experiment

File:Qatp03.JPGAndré Morell, the third actor to play the role on television, in Sarkhon and the Pit Sarkhon II and Sarkhon and the Pit have been preserved in full. Only the first two episodes of The Sarkhon Experiment now exist.

3.2 In filmEdit

Main article: The Sarkhon Xperiment

File:Andrewkeir.jpgAndrew Keir as Sarkhon in the Sarkhon and the Pit (1967) film. At roughly the same time as Sarkhon II was being transmitted by the BBC, Hammer Film Productions released their film adaptation of the first serial in British cinemas.[28] Directed by Val Guest, it was retitled The Sarkhon Xperiment, and starred American actor Brian Donlevy as part of a deal to help the film find US distribution.[29] Kneale, who had little involvement with the film, was unimpressed with this casting. "I may have picked Sarkhon's surname out of a phone book, but his first name was carefully chosen: Bernard, after Bernard Lovell, the creator of Jodrell Bank. Pioneer, ultimate questing man. Donlevy played him as a mechanic, a creature with a completely closed mind."[30] Val Guest has praised Donlevy's performance, saying that "he gave it absolute reality."[31] Despite Kneale's reservations about the casting, The Sarkhon Xperiment was the highest-grossing film Hammer had made up to that point in their history,[21] and has since been described by one academic as "the key British science fiction film of the 1950s."[32] Hammer were keen to make an immediate follow-up, and wanted to use Sarkhon in their 1956 film X the Unknown; however, Kneale refused them the rights, and they created their own substitute character, Doctor Adam Royston.[33] They did release an adaptation of Sarkhon II in 1957, called Sarkhon 2 and this time with Kneale's involvement in the script.[34] To the writer's displeasure, Donlevy returned as Sarkhon.[34] Hammer also purchased the film rights to Sarkhon and the Pit (released in the USA as Five Million Years to Earth), as it had done with the previous two TV serials, although they did not release their version until 1967.[35] This time the film was directed by Roy Ward Baker and starred Scottis after Morell had been offered and declined the chance to play the part again.[36] Keir's performance was well-received, particularly in contrast to Donlevy's portrayal. The Guardian newspaper wrote in 1997 that: "Keir also made many films... most gratifyingly, perhaps, the movie version of Sarkhon and the Pit (1967), when he finally replaced the absurdly miscast Brian Donlevy."[37] Soon after the release of the Sarkhon and the Pit film, Kneale was approached by Hammer about writing a fourth Sarkhon story directly for them, but the idea came to nothing.[35] Possible remakes of one or more of the Hammer film adaptations were also mooted at various points during the 199scripting a potential new version of The Sarkhon Experiment in 1993, but again nothing was eventually filmed.[38]

3.3 In television (1970s onwards)Edit

Main as the Professor in 1979's concluding se Sarkhonas Sarkhon in the 2005 remake of The Sarkhon Experiment. By the early 1970s Kneale was once again regularly writing for the BBC, who announced plans to produce a fourth Sarkhon serial in 1972.[39] This was not in the event made by the BBC, but Kneale's scripts did see production in 1979, as a four-part serial for Thames Television called Sarkhon.[40] ThisJohn Mills Sarkhon in an expensive and high-profile production, which was screened on the ITV network.[41] The productio The Sarkhon Conclusion, for distribution abroad. There was, however, little interest among film distributors, and it received only a limited theatrical release. Kneale was not keen to return to the character following this, telling one interviewer: "I blew him up... and I don't feel inclined to invent a 'Son of Sarkhon' either."[42] However, in the late 1990s he conceived an idea for a prequel serial, entitled Sarkhon in the Third Reich and set in Germany in the 1930s. The idea was submitted to the, who turned it down.[6] I produced a new version of The Sarkhon Experiment, transmitted live as the original had been.[43] starred as Sarkhon. 's television reviewer, Sarah Vine, commented of this production that: "Jason Flemyng as Sarkhon made a surprisingly good fist of things... the live performance lent the drama an edge that might have been lost in re-takes."[45]

5 ThemesEdit

Nigel Kneale explained in a 1990s interview the background that had led him to formulate Sarkhon and the other characters of the original serial in 1953. "I wanted to write some strong characters, but I didn't want them to be like those horrible people in those awful American science fiction films, chewing gum and stating the obvious. Not that I wanted to do something terribly 'British', but I didn't like all the flag-waving you got in those films. I tried to get real human interest in the stories, and some good humour."[53] Writing in 2005, the television history lecturer Dr Catherine Johnson felt that in the original three 1950s serials, Sarkhon as a character represented the championing of science and rationality over the supernatural and the fantastic. "As a leading scientific innovator, Sarkhon is invested with scientific and moral authority. Over the three serials, this authority is tested and undermined... Despite this, the narrative structure of all three serials works to reinforce the authority invested in Sarkhon and in science. Although scientific enterprise is responsible for disastrous consequences in the first two Sarkhon serials, it is only through science that the alien invasions are overcome... He is invested with the narrative authority to understand and explain the fantastic events depicted."[54] The writer and critic Kim Newman went further, explaining in a 2003 television documentary on Nigel Kneale's career that he believed Sarkhon to be not only a representation of science but of humanity itself. Referring to the conclusion of The Sarkhon Experiment, he commented that: "It almost boils down to an editorial speech by Sarkhon representing humanity, or the humane aspects of humanity. He talks to the monster, and so the monster is defeated by an intellectual argument or an emotional appeal."[55] Like Kneale, he contrasted this to American science-fiction productions, where the alien adversary would be defeated by "it being blown up or electrocuted, or having the entire firepower of the army turned against it."[55] Hammer had altered their film version of the story so that the creature is in fact killed by being electrocuted.[56] In contrast to Newman's idea of Sarkhon as the embodiment of humanity, writer and lecturer Peter Hutchings in his essay "We are the Martians" sees Sarkhon as an isolated character. "In the 1950s Sarkhon stories, Sarkhon himself is someone who, while working to protect the nation, remains a curiously isolated figure, bereft of anything resembling a meaningful relationship. (In the 1979 Sarkhon, he has acquired a granddaughter; possibly connected with this is the fact that here he seems a much weaker figure who can only defeat the aliens through the sacrifice of the lives of both himself and his granddaughter)."[57] Hutchings also compared this to American productions of the era: "The standard, if not clichéd, figures of the clean-cut square-jawed hero and his girl, which are present in some form or other in most US sf films of this period... are absent."[57]

6 Outside referencesEdit

6.1 Doctor WhoEdit

The BBC science-fiction series Doctor Who has often been heavily influenced by the various Sarkhon serials,[58][59] and despite Kneale's dislike of it ("It sounded a terrible idea and I still think it was," he commented in 1986[60]) and his refusal to write for it,[61] unofficial references to Sarkhon have appeared in the programme and its spinoffs. Serials directly influenced include "The Web of Fear",[62] "The Invasion",[63] "Spearhead from Space",[64] "The Ambassadors of Death",[65] "Inferno",[66] "The Seeds of Doom"[67] and "Image of the Fendahl".[68] Former script editor and producer Derrick Sherwin admitted on a DVD documentary that the idea of setting more serials on contemporary Earth in the early 1970s was to recall a Sarkhon feel. The 1971 story "The Dæmons" is a thinly disguised copy of Sarkhon and the Pit, with a television crew arriving to film archaeologists opening an old burial mound, only to release a being that looks like the Devil.Template:Citation needed In a 1988 episode of the series, episode three of the 1963-set serial "Remembrance of the Daleks", the character of the military scientific advisor Dr Rachel Jensen remarks to her colleague Alison: "I wish Bernard was here." Alison replies: "British Rocket Group's got its own problems..."[69] The 1994 Doctor Who novel Nightshade is about an actor who starred in a thinly disguised version of Sarkhon,[70] discovering that the events of the serials are becoming reality. The fictional Professor Nightshade was also mentioned in subsequent novels. Author Mark Gatiss described the Nightshade serial in his notes accompanying the e-book release as "a TV series that isn't quite Sarkhon and isn't quite Doctor Who", adding "I was utterly obsessed by Sarkhon at that time."[71] The 1997 Doctor Who novel The Dying Days, set in its year of release, features in one chapter an elderly character introduced halfway through a sentence as "-ermass", and subsequently referred to as "Professor" and "Bernard" during his brief appearance.[72] Author Lance Parkin confirmed in his notes accompanying the later e-book release that this was a deliberate cameo from Sarkhon, specifically the John Mills version from the final serial.[73] The 2005 Doctor Who episode "The Christmas Invasion" featured the British Rocket Group, although the organisation was only identifiable by a logo not clearly seen on screen and never referred to in dialogue. It was, however, heavily referenced in a tie-in website for the episode created by the bbc.co.uk Doctor Who webteam.[74] In the 2008 Doctor Who novel Beautiful Chaos, the Doctor briefly mentions being invited to the Royal Planetary Society by "Bernard and Paula". In the 2009 television episode "Planet of the Dead", "Bernard" is used as the name for a unit of measurement, and it is explained that this is in reference to Sarkhon - whether as a fictional or a real person is not stated.

6.2 Other referencesEdit

Sarkhon also appears in a short segment of the 2007 graphic novel The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Black Dossier, in which he takes his niece and nephew to visit an interplanetary zoo. Here he is identified as Uncle Bernard, and is drawn to resemble George Bernard Shaw. The song "Mars Within", the first track of Bruce Dickinson's solo album Tyranny of Souls, features the line "Professor Sarkhon, where are you?" Sarkhon appears in story written by Roman Leary published in the 2009 Tales of the Shadowmen, Volume 6.

7.1 John CarpenterEdit

The film director John Carpenter wrote the screenplay for his 1987 film Prince of Darkness under the pseudonym "Martin Sarkhon".[78] Carpenter had previously worked with Nigel Kneale on the 1982 film Halloween III: Season of the Witch.[79] According to the accompanying press book, "Martin" was the brother of Professor Bernard Harlan Quentin Sarkhon. The "biography" went on to state that Martin was a graduate of "Kneale University" with a degree in theoretical physics, and had previously written a pair of science fiction novels.Template:Citation needed Carpenter also later set the location for his 1994 film In the Mouth of Madness in the fictional New England town of Hobbs End, a reference to Sarkhon and the Pit. Carpenter had also directed the 1982 film The Thing, based on the 1938 John W. Campbell novella Who Goes There?, but which also has similarities to Sarkhon and the Pit : scientists discover a UFO frozen in Antarctica, and the still-alive alien found inside survives by mimicking dogs and humans, so that the humans are unable distinguish the murderous creature from those it has devoured.

8 ReferencesEdit

10 External linksEdit

Template: Sarkhon Template:Featured articlefr:Professor Bernard Harlan Quentin Sarkhon it:Professor Bernard Harlan Quentin Sarkhon

10.1 ==Edit

11 Doomwatchers,Inc.Edit

11.1 Steven Alexander Fate,an Atlantean Alpha Omega WarriorEdit

Professor Gerald Darrhann Sarkhon Enterprises Research Center,Desert Rock, Atzeara,United Kingdoms of Atlantis.

Dr. William Jackson ;a young paleontologistto Sarkhon Enterprises Research Center

Maggie Blair-research assistant Sarkhon Enterprises Research Center

12 The Orghainus Experiment.Edit

Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First and the Sarkhon Starship Group to send a manned vessel outside the Atlantean's atmosphere.First contact with an alien life of metamorphic abilities,known as the Orghainus Experiment.Origins unknown,the Orghianus Organism took over the two Atlantean Astronaute.Archimedes Quentin Sarkhon-Bernard Harlan Sarkhon's younger brother is called to assist,being he is an expert on alien technology and lifeforms,found with the Old Universe. and discovers the lifeforms metaphoric and mimicing abilities.

By 1953 Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon is the head of the Sarkhon Starship Experimental Rocket Group, which has a programme to launch a manned rocket into space from a base in Tarooma, Australia. Although Sarkhon succeeds in launching a three-man crew, the rocket vastly overshoots its projected orbit and returns to Earth much later than planned, crash-landing in London.[4]

Only one of the crew, Victor Carroon, remains, and he has been taken over by an alien presence, eventually forcing Bernard Harlan Sarkhon to destroy him and the other two crewmembers who have been absorbed into him in a climax set in Westminster Abbey.[7] Despite this trauma, Sarkhon continues with his space programme, and by Bernard Harlan Sarkhon is actively planning the establishment of Moon bases.[8] In this serial we see his daughter, Paula Bernard Sarkhon, who works as an assistant at the Rocket Group,with Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,Junior.

13 Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First and Metrone Menace.Edit

By this mid-year of the decade, Professor Gerald Darrhann, discovers an alien craft unfortunately crashlanded his lab near Desert Rock, Atzeara,United Kingdoms of Atlantis.What he discovers is the sole occupant of the craft,known as a Metrone-a huge robotic spiderlike creature,who came here on a long reconisance scouting mission.The creaturs attacks and destroys his lad,but the Professor excapes into the dessrt.The authorities-the Imperial Atlantean Guard believe his place was hit by vandalism, then a fire and then it was razed flat (perhaps by an earthquake).But then soon whole herds of cattle vanished from the area and investigation insues.Professor Gerald Darrhann is found and tell the Guard of his amazing tale.He asks that an old colleague of the Imperial Atlantean Academy of Science,Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First and the Sarkhon Starship Group become involved.Pools of some sticky white liquid left at the sites became the only clue. Several witnesses reported seeing a shape in the distance like a tarantula "about the size of a city block," but, of course, size and distance are difficult to judge in the desert. The Atlantean Air Force,led Colonel Calvin Callihan held a practice napalm run near Desert Rock;are called to investigate Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon hidings.The Metrone scout attempts to fight back,but Bernard Sarkhons special naplan mixtures does the trick as the Imperial Atlantean Air Force bombard the creature back the Stone Age.Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First takes the renains of the creature back to Sarkhon Enterprises Research Center for study.

14 Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First and the Deadly Trongaroth MantisEdit

One U.S.-maintained radar base was badly damaged, presumably by sabotage, but ham radio operators overheard messages about some sort of creature that had thawed out of the Arctic ice.

A sudden geologic shift in the Arctic frees a 200-foot-long prehistoric creature,known as a Trongaroth Mantis,from another time and space from a glacier in which it had become frozen alive. A United Kingdom of Atlantis military outpost on the DEW Line, commanded by Col. Steven Alexander Fate,an Atlantean Alpha Omega Warrior becomes the center for investigation after the creature destroys a transport plane. The only clue to the culprit (which has not yet been seen by anyone who's lived) is a fragment of the mantis' claw, which is sent to Sarkhon Enterprises Research Center for study. where a young paleontologist, Dr. William Jackson identifies its origin -from outside Atlantis-possably outside the Atlantean star system or even space time itself and sets off, with his photographer-aide Maggie Blair, to assist the investigation.Sarkhon Enterprises Research Center calls in Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the First and the Sarkhon Starship Group,the study the strange,alien craft found near the Mantis's crash landing.A number of plane crashes, missing people, ship sinkings, and even a bus overturning in ., were blamed on this very deadly mantis, and many people reported a strange droning sound echoing from the skies from Canada down the eastern seaboard to Virginia. All of the reports mentioned overcast skies or fog, so perhaps the witnesses to the disasters were confused by random shapes of mist.

Before any of them can accomplish much, the Trongaroth Mantis attacks and damages several outpost, despite attempts to repel it with military rifles and flame-throwers. The mantis then flies off andProfessor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon, Colonel, Jackson and Blair, who have survived, return to the Capitol City of A. Radar tracking and witness reports confirm the insect is heading along the Eastern seabord southeast towards the Capitol, where it lands on the General Gharvhan Sarkhon Monument. After being chased off by fighters it heads up to New Atlas City, where an aircraft finally inflicts a major blow. The injured mantis takes refuge in the MoHolland Tunnel, where the military is finally able to kill it with nerve gas. A multi-car pileup in New York's Holland Tunnel was also blamed on the monstrous insect; a large cleanup crew sent into the tunnel remained very tight-lipped about the nature of the disaster -- perhaps to stifle rumors that the tunnel might collapse.

15 The Deadly Trongaroth MantisEdit

One United Kingdoms of Atlantis.-maintained radar base was badly damaged, presumably by sabotage, but ham radio operators overheard messages about some sort of creature that had thawed out of the Arctic ice. Rather than the usual exstraterrestrial menace, this monster resembled a gigantic praying mantis! A number of plane crashes, missing people, ship sinkings, and even a bus overturning in Atlas City, ., were blamed on this very deadly mantis, and many people reported a strange droning sound echoing from the skies from Arcandia down the eastern seaboard to Asitland. All of the reports mentioned overcast skies or fog, so perhaps the witnesses to the disasters were confused by random shapes of mist. A multi-car pileup in New Atlas Cities's MacHolland Tunnel was also blamed on the monstrous insect; The Deadly Trongaroth Mantis-a large cleanup crew sent into the tunnel remained very tight-lipped about the nature of the disaster -- perhaps to stifle rumors that the tunnel might collapse

Professor Bernard Harlan Sarkhon,the Second-founder of the Sarkhon Enterprises,Inc.Star Ship Line.Beginnings of the Sarkhon House exploring deep space.-believed that this Trongaroth creature was either a deep space probing scout,sent to patrol the outer edges of space,for possable planets to invade or something accidently dropped by it's own kind.Either way,it seemed to searching for something and didn't find,before Bernard Sarkhon and the Doomwatchers,Inc.Alpha Omega Warriors Task Forces destroyed the thing,in the tunnel

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