Kappatoo (CITV, 1990-1992)
This is a CITV show that I don’t really remember watching that much at the time, but I have wanted to discover more about it and share it on here. This is because Kappatoo is a show with a interesting idea that falls into a few genres. Not only is it a children’s TV show, but it is also something of a science-fiction show, and a comedy-drama show too.
The story is that Simon Cashmere who is an ordinary 15-year-old boy in the present day (which is 1990) swaps places with Kappa who is from the 23rd century 280 years in the future (both roles are played by the same actor, Simon Nash). Will Kappa be able to adjust to this strange new world and blend in with these people who don’t know his rather unusual secret. Can he convince Simon’s family and his best friend Steve that he is the real thing? With his odd turns of phrase, ability to stop time, and scoring 17 goals in a football match they soon notice that Simon definitely isn’t who he seems to be.
One of the things that attracted me to watching Kappatoo was that the futuristic fast-talking computer sidekick was played by Andrew O’Connor (no relation to Hazel). Now if you are a regular visitor to this blog you might know that I have something of an unironic fondness for his work, having also enjoyed watching some of the game shows that he hosted in the late-80s/early-90s such as Chain Letters and One To Win among others, so it was good seeing him do his thing here including some daft impressions (it seems that he also co-wrote some of the episodes).
One thing that Kappa has to deal with is a girl at school called Tracey (who in a good “before they were famous” was played by a teenage Denise Outen, before she added a “Van” to her surname) who Simon wants to go out with. Meanwhile, in the future Simon is enjoying his new life until has to battle in a sporting event against Kappa’s arch-rival Sigmasix who will do anything to beat him.
In 1992 the show returned for a second series as Kappatoo II as Simon and Kappa’s lives became increasingly entangled whilst travelling back and forth in time. There were also a few cast changes. The show also featured a few gadgets and special effects (although it clearly wasn’t big budget stuff) which could make it draw comparisons with Mike And Angelo, another CITV sci-fi show from around the same time.
Like most shows in the science-fiction genre, Kappatoo did pick up something of a small cult following that endures (but we are hardly talking Doctor Who or Red Dwarf levels here). There were also a couple of books released. 14 episodes were made in two series but it hasn’t been released on DVD, I feel that it would be good to see this show, along with lots of other CITV shows from this era, finally made available.