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Confetti Check A-OK (UFO: The Series episode)

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"Confetti Check A-OK" is the requisite "flashback" instalment of any series programme produced by Gerry Anderson, in which the beginnings of S.H.A.D.O. and the decline and fall of Edward Straker's marriage are chronicled. The source of the friction between Straker and former General James Henderson by the time of Henderson's election as President of the International Astrophysical Commission, and the establishment of that Commission, are chronicled as well.


The birth of Lieutenant David Grey's twins by Cesarean section brings back uncomfortable memories for Ed as his mind casts back to his wedding day...

December 1970: Ed and his new wife, Mary, plan to honeymoon in Athens, but the holiday is abandoned when Ed is called to an emergency meeting with General Henderson, who is still recovering in hospital after the UFO attack on their Rolls Royce. On Henderson's instructions, Ed flies to New York to attend a meeting with the United Nations Special Committee. He explains that Earth is under threat from extraterrestrial invasion and puts forward a proposal for a super military force to be put into operation to defend the Earth. The project finds unanimous approval, and Ed is voted Commander in chief, Alec Freeman is the first recruit and Henderson is promoted to head of the International Astrophysical Commission, which will be holding the organization's purse strings.

Over the next few months, SHADO's underground headquarters are constructed, but the long hours of working in total secrecy take their toll on Ed's marriage, with Mary becoming increasingly upset that she hardly seems to see her husband any more. Then, just as work on SHADO Control is complete, Mary announces that she is pregnant. Her joy is short-lived, however, when her mother plants a suggestion that Ed could be having an affair. Mary confronts her husband with the accusation, demanding to know what keeps her husband out of the house until 3 o'clock in the morning, but security prevents Ed from telling Mary the truth.

March 1972: SHADO staff recruitment begins. Ed holds a meeting with the recruits at recruit Nina Barry's apartment. But Mary's mother has hired a private detective, who photographs Ed and Nina together. The meeting goes on all night, and when Ed gets home the next morning, he finds Mary ready to leave him. They argue, but Mary becomes hysterical and, after Ed slaps her, she loses her balance and falls down the stairs. She is rushed to hospital, suffering from internal hemorrhage, and her doctor must perform a Cesarean section to save the baby. After an agonizing wait, Ed and Mary's father are informed that Mary and the child, a boy, are doing fine, but when Mary regains consciousness, it is her father who is at her side, as Ed has been called away on urgent SHADO business; the marriage has come to an end.

Regular CastEdit

Guest CastEdit

  • Mary Straker - Suzanne Neve
  • Mary's Father - Michael Nightingale
  • English Delegate - Jack May
  • Monsieur Duval - Jeffrey Segal
  • German Delegate - Gordon Sterne
  • American Delegate - Alan Tilvern
  • Lieutenant David Grey - Julian Grant
  • Mary's Doctor - Tom Oliver
  • 1st C.I.A. Man - Shane Rimmer
  • Hotel Clerk - Geoffrey Hinsliff
  • Estate Agent - Donald Pelmear
  • Porter - Frank Tregear
  • Nurse - Penny Jackson
  • 2nd C.I.A. Man - Mike Stevens

SHADO Equipment UsedEdit

  • Straker's car

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