Max Headroom

Episode 1

Max Headroom: the Original Story

Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Apr 04, 1985 on ABC
out of 10
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Episode Summary

Max Headroom: the Original Story
Basically the same story as episode one of the American series but with a more gritty feel to it. Changes to the story include a darker Bryce with murderous intentions, a sharper-looking Max Headroom who eventually 'escapes' with Blank Reg aboard the big, pink bus and a possible blacker ending for Grossberg and Bryce.moreless

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    Nickolas Grace

    Nickolas Grace


    Guest Star

    Hilary Tindall

    Hilary Tindall


    Guest Star

    Paul Spurrier

    Paul Spurrier

    Bryce Lynch

    Guest Star

    W. Morgan Sheppard

    W. Morgan Sheppard

    Blank Reg

    Recurring Role

    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (3)

    • QUOTES (14)

      • Phone Ad Spokesman: Hello, there. Call this number and find out what an incredibly nice guy God is. He won't keep you waiting on the line, he won't hang up on you... *click*

      • End credits music, with
        Max: Parrots are only one rung above politicians, though. You'll always know when they're lying: their lips move.

      • Max: I had to spend a little time recently with a parrot. (It's true.) I won't tell you why, but what amazes me is why anybody would want to spend any time at all sitting at home teaching a bird to talk - I mean, what's wrong with the rest of the family, huh? And of course they teach it something really interesting like, 'Who's a pretty boy'

      • Max: Now, I understand why people prefer watching television to the radio. They've worked out how boring it is watching the radio.

      • Bryce: Soon I'll be able to reconstruct anybody on the screen - so accurately that even your own Mum would know it was you.
        Breugal: You might care to call it the Phoenix, Mr. Bryce. My word, you could have all your politicians in little boxes. It's very handy.

      • Max: This is Max Headroom on Big Time Television, and what I want to know is: don't Eskimos ever get bored with their weather forecast?

      • Max: If you're all watching me, who's watching Network 23 - a network with a great future behind it? As they say when you're buying suppositories, with friends like those, who needs enemas?

      • Max: Big Time Television: ratings, 1000... ratings, 1000.
        Dominique: Reg, this is incredible... over a thousand viewers. You might get paid this month.

      • Theora: I nearly lost you.
        Carter: Well, you're going to get a chance to lose me again tonight, 'cause I'm going to go back to Bryce's studio.

      • Grossman: Ben, I'm talking ratings!
        Cheviot: And I'm talking people!
        Grossman: Same thing!

      • Max Headroom: B-B-B-Big T-T-Time. Hi. Both of you. Welcome t-t-to Big Time. You want to check these ratings? I seem to have an audience of two.

      • Max Headroom: Hello, and welcome to Big Time Television. Live and direct, it's Big Time Television - the station where two's company and three's an audience.

      • Edison : Since when has news been entertainment?!"
        Murray : Er ... since it was invented?

      • Grossberg: Max, this is the executive board of Network 23.
        Max : You mean you're the people who execute audiences?

    • NOTES (3)

      • When Lorimar picked up the rights to continue the story as a series, they almost completely recast the show. Three characters are common to both versions: Matt Frewer, Amanda Pays, William Morgan Sheppard.

      • This telefilm was created to explain the origin and backstory of Max. Max was conceived as a talking-head host and VJ for a British Channel 4 music program host. In the end of the film Max in the hands of Blank Reg and Big Time Television. The ending of the US remake is different, to better provide more plot options for the series.

      • There are differences between the British and American versions of this pilot. The British version was twice as long. It included two characters that show up later in the series but are not presented in the pilot. This two characters are Dominique and Blank Reg of Bigtime TV. There are some changes in personalities with the character of Bryce. In the British version he was is evil and ends up going down with Grosman (Grossberg). In the American version he sees that what he has done is wrong and ends up on Carter's side.

    • ALLUSIONS (2)

      • While chasing Carter, Breugal quotes Hamlet.
        Breugal: Tis now the very witching time of night, when churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes contagion to this world.
        They are hunting Carter to kill him. The unspoken completion of the line is:
        Hamlet: now could I drink hot blood, and do such bitter business as the day would quake to look on.

      • Breugal and Mahler are a riff on the 19th century Scottish body snatching team of Burke and Hare. This team stoled newly buried bodies for physicians to use in anatomy lessons. The team later started making there own corpses. Burke was hanged after Hare turned King's evidence. Hare died some 25 years later, a pauper.