The Gemini Factor

☯ Introduction ☯

The Gemini Factor was a children's fantasy drama series made by Thames Television in 1987. Very few people have ever heard of it, so way back in the late 1990s I thought it deserved a web page. Said web page languished on my ISP's web server for the better part of two decades, until they deleted it, so I have resurrected it here in a slightly updated form.

Over the course of six half-hour episodes, The Gemini Factor follows two apparently unconnected teens; the aggressive, antisocial Lee (portrayed by Charlie Creed-Miles), and the quiet, frustratingly well-behaved Leah (portrayed by Louisa Haigh, now Louisa Milwood-Haigh). They are both fourteen years old, and share the same birthday. Abandoned separately as newborns, each was left with a ring depicting half a yin-yang symbol. Their lives take very different paths: Leah is adopted by a middle-class family, Lee bounces from one foster home to the next. As soon as the two of them unwittingly come within a few miles of each other, they both start to experience visions of the other's experiences. The revelation that they were in fact twins came as little of a surprise, especially after the CITV presenter's introductory announcement that the series was about "a brother and sister with telepathic powers".

The series was occasionally reminiscent of parts of Thames' earlier telepathic-boy-meets-girl drama, Chocky's Children, but was a little darker in style and content. It was nominated for a BAFTA for Best Children's Programme (Entertainment/Drama) in 1988, but lost out to A Little Princess.

☯ Availability ☯

To the best of my knowledge The Gemini Factor was never repeated in the UK, although it was aired in other countries, among them Australia.

Along with the rest of the Thames Television back catalogue, rights have since passed to Fremantle Media.

I am not aware of any official home media releases anywhere in the world, nor of any legitimate streaming sites offering it.

I am not prepared to give out copies of the series in any form, so please don't ask. At the time of writing, the complete series can be viewed on YouTube. Certain websites may be offering copies on DVD, but I am unable to comment on the legitimacy of their offering.

☯ Novelisation ☯

In November 1987, a paperback novelisation written by Thea Bennett was published by Thames Magnet (ISBN 0-423-02300-4). This book has of course been out-of-print ever since, but second-hand copies are probably available from reputable booksellers or Amazon.

☯ Pictures ☯

A gratuitous enlargement of that cover photo:

I'm grateful to Guy Wilkins — who I believe was the cover photographer for the novelisation — for providing these two photographs:

☯ Locations ☯

The fictional clock tower which becomes a significant part of the story is actually 18th century folly Broadway Tower in the Cotswolds, with a prop clock face added for filming:

Trawling round Google Street View, I've found a few other filming locations in West London.

The shop where Lee steals the keyboard is on Brentford High Street:

The Feedwell Snack Bar, where Lee overhears a conversation about an empty house, is part of Albany Parade on Brentford High Street, and is now the River Café:

The estate agent where Ruth enquires about the clock tower is in Percy Road, Twickenham, and naturally still an estate agent:

Lee watches her from outside Barclays bank across the road:

Lee legs it up Constance Road, next to the bank:

The exterior of the café where Lee talks to Ruth is just round the corner from Seaton Road, Twickenham. At the time of writing, the Triangle Café closed a few years ago, and the building is due to be turned into flats:

☯ Credits ☯

Various information courtesy of The Internet Movie Database.

Location views and mapping courtesy of Google Maps.

The font used in page headings is my own work, inspired by the series opening titles which use a variant on John F. Cumming's font Rubens.

Web Page by Tyrone C. Last updated 31-Mar-2016.