Undone (radio series)

Last updated

Undone
Genre Comedy
Running time30 minutes
Country of origin Flag of the United Kingdom.svg United Kingdom
Language(s) English
Home station BBC Radio 7
Starring Sarah Solemani (Series 1)
Alex Tregear (Series 2-3)
Ben Moor
Duncan Wisbey
Written byBen Moor
Produced by Colin Anderson
Original release25 March 2006 – 2 January 2010
No. of series3 + 1 pilot
No. of episodes17
Audio format Stereophonic sound
Opening theme"We Are The Sleepyheads" by Belle & Sebastian

Undone is a radio comedy broadcast by the BBC on the digital channel BBC 7, written by and starring Ben Moor. It uses a sci-fi theme of parallel universes to poke fun at life and especially the media business in London. The series focuses on the life of Edna Turner (Sarah Solemani in Series One and Alex Tregear in Series Two and Three), a journalist for a listings magazine who discovers a weird parallel version of London called "Undone".

Contents

The pilot episode (also known as "Mind the Gaps", and first broadcast March 2006) was subsequently designated Episode One of the first season. That first season was broadcast on consecutive evenings in October 2006. In November 2007 it was re-broadcast over five weeks. BBC7 broadcast a second series of six weekly episodes, beginning Sunday 20 January 2008. A third series was broadcast starting on 28 November 2009, making Undone BBC Radio 7's longest-running original narrative comedy, that is one not previously broadcast on any other BBC network.

Plot

Would-be journalist Edna Turner comes to London to work on the listings magazine Get Out!, a parody of Time Out. She encounters Tankerton Slopes (Ben Moor) who works in a parallel version of London called Undone. They have something in common, in that they both work for the same boss, Carlo Jones, although Tankerton's boss is a parallel version of Edna's. Tankerton recruits Edna to help find residents of Undone who have crossed to London. Tankerton is somewhat taken with the fact that Edna comes from the town of Towcester, as its name is pronounced in the same way as the common kitchen appliance. Naturally he buys her a toaster from Undone as a gift.

Undone is "where the weirdness comes from". Ideas leak from Undone to London, making it the peculiar place it is. However, according to Tankerton, reality "cannot stand too much weirdness". There are "gaps" here and there which connect London and Undone. People like Tankerton and Edna can learn to find the gaps. Others sometimes cross over to make a new career in London, but inevitably upset the balance between the worlds. Tankerton sends Edna to check out unusual events and places that may be the results of people crossing over. Edna, however, cannot resist letting the dishy Grant (Tim Key) from Undone stay in her London, piling up problems for the final episode, while Edna's mother descends from their home in Towcester to visit Edna and her old friend Carlo, in Undone.

In the first series finale, weirdness threatens to flood London while mundaneness threatens Undone. Edna discovers that she is the one who can maintain the balance between realities. In the process, she perceives even more universes, including one in which she is "a fictional character played by Sarah Solemani". She restores the balance, but Tankerton and other Undoners she has come to know vanish, and the gaps between London and Undone are closed. Returning to her flat, she wonders if she imagined everything, but sees the gifts Tankerton gave her, and discovers she can cross to Undone simply by concentrating.

In the second series, Edna learns that Tankerton has become engaged to a woman called Ida (Sophie Duval) who lives in another version of London called Donlon, which is very generic. She also learns that they are half sisters and their father is The Prince (Kevin Eldon), a man who wants to unite all versions of London together and thus is an enemy of Tankerton.

In the third series Edna meets the "real" Tankerton Slopes, and journeys to the "Prime" version of London, along with other cities such as Roman Londinium, "Londres" (a French version) and "Lahndan", a vibrantly Cockney version. A character called "Golfer Mackenzie" gathers together all his alternate selves from the different Londons, and rampages across reality. One of the Golfer Mackenzies, who comes from a version of London where everyone is angry, kills the Undone version of Carlo. Edna comes to realize that all the Londons are her creation, and she has to learn to sort them out before they all destroy each other. At the end she has restored a London that includes her, Ida, Tankerton (as Tim Stokes), the London Carlo and other important people. Everything seems stable, until she receives a phone call from Golfer.

Episodes

Pilot

  1. Mind The Gaps, AKA Undone

Series One

  1. Unappreciated
  2. Unrivalled
  3. Unfamiliar
  4. Unravelled

Series Two

  1. Unaccompanied
  2. Unsurprised
  3. Unrelated
  4. Unaccustomed
  5. Unwelcome
  6. Unification

Series Three

  1. Unalike
  2. Untoward
  3. Ungainly
  4. Underground
  5. United
  6. Unending

Characters in Undone

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