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Gold was the tenth episode of Series D it was first broadcast 30 November 1981.


From the VHS release:

When Keiller, the purser of the cruise ship Space Princess, makes Scorpio's crew a lucrative offer, Avon is loath to refuse. After all, who could resist the temptation to hide 17 billion in gold, even if it does belong to Servalan?


Scorpio docks with another ship, Space Princess, controlled by Keiller, and Avon, Tarrant, Dayna and Soolin cross over to meet him, leaving Vila to handle the ship. Keiller tells them Space Princess is ostensibly a cruise ship from the planet Zerok but in reality the passengers are drugged to believe they are touring beauty spots and the ship's real purpose is to ferry gold, Zerok being one of the few places it can still be found. Keiller wants their help in hijacking a shipment: The gold is processed before loading and turned black, with only the intended recipient being able to turn it back, but Keiller wants to interfere with the process so the gold will remain normal.

After Keiller has returned to Zerok, Avon and Soolin teleport down to join him in the processing plant. They head to the processing centre, killing guards who try to stop them, while Tarrant and Dayna also teleport down and engage more guards in a gun battle. When the alarm is raised, Tarrant and Dayna find Keiller unconscious next to two bodies, disfigured by exposure to the conversion process. They take Keiller back to Scorpio where he states they were attacked by two guards he wasn't expecting. In fact, Avon and Soolin are free on the surface; it was the guards who died and Avon has deduced they weren't Zerok security. After checking Keiller's personnel file and learning he once worked for the President of the Federation, they return to the ship.

Keiller admits someone contacted him and told him to enlist the Scorpio crew's help to steal the black gold. He intended to steal the gold for himself, but now it has been converted he suggests going through with his contact's offer. Since the gold is too unstable to be teleported, they will have to bring it aboard the ship by hand. Avon, Tarrant, Dayna and Soolin board Space Princess posing as passengers, avoiding the drugs.

While Avon and Keiller kill the guard in the hold and take possession of the gold, Dayna is poisoned with exobriddian and taken to the ship's doctor, Slaten, by Tarrant. Since, as a non-Federation citizen, she won't be given treatment on Earth, Slaten sends out a call for a ship to take her back to Zerok. Vila answers and Scorpio docks with the ship. Avon is waiting with the gold but Slaten sees him and tries to raise the alarm; Soolin and Keiller arrive and Keiller kills him. Guards arrive and, while Tarrant, Dayna, Soolin and Keiller get the gold onboard, Avon holds them off; he is trapped in the airlock, along with a guard, as Scorpio detaches but manages to teleport to safety.

Keiller arranges a rendezvous with his employer on Beta 5 and he, Avon, Tarrant, Dayna and Soolin wait on the surface with the gold. A group of figures meet them and the crew pull their guns on both Keiller and the new arrivals. Keiller's employer turns out to be Servalan, hoping to trap the crew. Instead, she gives them the ten million credits agreed and takes the gold. The crew return to the ship and Servalan and her entourage also depart, leaving Keiller dead behind them. Onboard Scorpio, Orac reveals Zerok has just joined the Federation: Not only will Servalan have access to the machines to turn the black gold normal again but the Zerok currency she paid them with is worthless. All they have done is make Servalan rich.



  • Stunt Co-ordinator - Mike Potter
  • Production Manager - Jacinta Peel
  • Production Associate - Frank Pendlebury
  • Production Assistant - Ian Willson
  • Assistant Floor Manager - Nigel Taylor
  • Film Cameraman - Fintan Sheehan
  • Film Recordist - Stuart Moser
  • Film Editor - Sheila S. Tomlinson
  • Videotape Editor - Ian Williams
  • Visual Effects Designer - Jim Francis, Mike Kelt
  • Video Effects - Robin Lobb
  • Graphic Designer - Dick Bailey
  • Properties Buyer - Francis Smith
  • Technical Manager - Terry Brett
  • Senior Cameraman - Dave White
  • Vision Mixer - Nigel Finnis
  • Studio Lighting - Warwick Fielding
  • Studio Sound - Trevor Webster
  • Special Sound - Elizabeth Parker
  • Costume Designer - Nicholas Rocker
  • Make Up Artist - Suzanne Jansen
  • Music By - Dudley Simpson
  • Series Created By - Terry Nation

Story notes[]

  • This is the last episode in which Servalan interacts with any of the Scorpio crew, and the only time she meets Soolin.
  • Chris Boucher has since confirmed in interviews that, had the BBC commissioned a fifth season, it would have been a lot like this episode.
  • As a cost-saving measure, sets used in "Assassin" were redressed and used again for this episode.
  • Chris Boucher didn't like the romance between Avon and Servalan in Series C, so this is the only episode in Series D where they meet. Paul Darrow and Jacqueline Pearce made the most of their opportunity.



Filming locations[]

Jordans Ryvita Poole, Dorset. Unknown Dorset quarry.

Production errors[]

When Vila hands Keiller the transmitter to contact the buyers with, the main screen is visible in the background and is entirely blue, as nothing is being keyed onto the blue screen there.

When Tarrant fires Keiller's gun at the guards on Space Princess, it makes the same sound as a Scorpio Clip gun, although the gun has previously been heard to make a different sound when fired by Keiller.


  • The crew are able to enter and exit the ship through the airlock, despite Rescue establishing only the flight deck was pressurised while in flight. (They had previously been shown to pressurise other parts of the ship in Stardrive.)
  • The guard blown out of the airlock when Scorpio detaches echoes the fate of Raiker when the Liberator detaches from the London in Space-Fall.
  • Avon tells Servalan that he has been waiting to kill her. Avon previously declared he wanted to her in Traitor.


Keiller: I've got a criminal record.
Vila: Hasn't everybody?

Avon: We will just have to use Keiller's plan as it stands.
Vila: Or falls.

Home video releases[]

Series 4 DVD

DVD cover

  • Original BBC video release (Volume 25) in 1993.
  • Fabulous Films video reissue (Volume 25) on 4 October 1999.
  • DVD release as part of the Series 4 box set on 24 April 2006.

External links[]