CITV Memories – Jackson Pace – The Great Years.

Jackson Pace – The Great Years (CITV, 1990)

When I was younger, I did enjoy a lot of the sitcoms that were shown on CITV. Just like many others I enjoyed Mike And Angelo, Palace Hill, and Spatz, they all ran for more than one series and were popular with viewers. But this is a CITV sitcom from the early-90s that I have no memories of watching at all, which is rather curious, so I decided to find out all about it, and manged to track down some of the episodes online. Will it stand up against those other shows?

Jackson Pace – The Great Years is notable for a few reasons. Firstly, it was written by Daniel Peacock, who went on to work on other shows including Harry And Cosh and Billie – Girl From The Future (that I reviewed recently), and I enjoyed both of those. Also, the main cast came from the alternative comedy circuit, as it starred Keith Allen and Josie Lawrence (along with Peacock), not the first people you’d expect to feature on CITV, more like maybe a late-night sitcom on BBC2. vlcsnap-00685

The show was essentially a parody of the Indiana Jones series of films. Jackson Pace (Allen) was a fearless British explorer. Upon discovering that there is some treasure available, he decides that it should be his, and he begins his quest to travel around the world and get there first at any cost. He is aided by his rather useless sidekick Roger Whibley (Peacock). vlcsnap-00693

Also featuring is Ryveeta Tusk (Lawrence), a journalist and realises that this is a rather good story worth following. If together they can acquire the keystones and unlock the ancient temple, who knows what pleasures await. As the episodes progress, we see Jackson and his team travel around the world, including being caught up in jungles, having fights on trains, and other strange places, but he is determined that nothing will stop him. vlcsnap-00691

But of course, they did have their rivals. Princess Layme and her team including Filo are also on the search, and the main villain that causes trouble is Daken, who has a metal arm that can crush anything. It is a close-run thing, but Jackson does eventually track down the temple. The climax was left open-ended, but there wasn’t another series, so 30 years on we still don’t know what happened next. vlcsnap-00694

Jackson Pace – The Great Years was described by TV Times as “a breathtaking tale of treasure and travel”, and it definitely was, being exciting to watch from start to finish. Along with the main cast, also making appearances were Arthur Smith and Richard “he’s dead silly” Waites. There were only six episodes, they were not repeated, and there hasn’t been a DVD release.

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