Joanna Lumley and David McCallum as Sapphire & Steel

Sapphire & Steel are reassigned – to download

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Audio dramas based on the classic sci-fi/fantasy series Sapphire & Steel are now available again from Big Finish Productions. 

“All irregularities will be handled by the forces controlling each dimension. Transuranic, heavy elements may not be used where there is life. Medium atomic weights are available: Gold, Lead, Copper, Jet, Diamond, Radium, Sapphire, Silver and Steel.

“Sapphire and Steel have been assigned.”

Often cited as a cult television favourite, Sapphire & Steel, created by P. J. Hammond, originally aired between 1979 and 1982.

Sapphire & Steel - Joanna Lumley & David McCallum
Sapphire & Steel (c) ITV Studios

The series starred Joanna Lumley and the late David McCallum as a pair of “interdimensional operatives” tasked with protecting the flow of time. Each story would see them take human form as they showed up in a new location, to investigate a dangerous anomaly.

The whole television series is currently available to stream on ITVX.

Audio Adventures

While the pair’s on screen adventures concluded after four series, it was one of the first shows outside the Doctor Who universe to receive an audio drama continuation with Big Finish Productions.

Between May 2005 and August 2008, Big Finish released 15 full-cast audio dramas based on the TV series. David Warner took on McCallum’s part to play the stubborn Steel, whilst Susannah Harker slipped into Lumley’s role as Sapphire.

Sapphire & Steel

For three of the audio stories, original TV guest star David Collings returned to recreate his performance as Silver. Other notable guest stars included Mark Gatiss, Colin Baker, Sarah Douglas, Richard Franklin, Angela Bruce, Arthur Bostrom and Louise Jameson.

The writers across the three series are David Bishop, John Dorney, Richard Dinnick, Nigel Fairs, Simon Guerrier, Joseph Lidster (Torchwood) and Steve Lyons.

Made in the pre-download era, the series was only ever made available on CD. As such, it has been unavailable for more than a decade.

Sapphire & Steel reassigned – to download!

Now, in association with ITV Studios, all three series are available as downloads.

Each re-released series comes packaged with a brand-new 30-minute behind-the-scenes featurette, offering insights into the production of these beloved adventures. Plus, there’s psychedelic new cover art by Will Brooks.

Big Finish Sapphire & Steel Series 1 cover

Big Finish chairman Jason Haigh-Ellery said:

“We are delighted to have reached an agreement with ITV Studios to bring back our Sapphire & Steel releases as downloads. We have received regular requests over the years for it to be made available again, so we’re pleased that a whole new generation of listeners will be able to hear the late, great David Warner as Steel and Susannah Harker as Sapphire.”

Series producer Nigel Fairs added:

“I’m absolutely delighted that people will be able to hear our version of Sapphire & Steel again, as it really was a labour of love. Re-imagining such a visual television series for audio was no easy task, but I think my decision to concentrate on the emotional story arcs of the characters who encountered ‘Time’ and our two agents bore some really tasty fruit! Dear David and Susie were the perfect leads, and the recording sessions were amongst the happiest I ever had at Big Finish. Creative times indeed. ‘Roll back time, Sapphire…’”

All three series of the Sapphire & Steel audio dramas are available to download from Big Finish now.