Beyond Black [Hilary Mantel]

Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
RepeatedComments
01Voices From The Other Side2010030120200225 (BBC7)
20200224 (BBC7)

Alison Hart is a professional medium, an awkward, obese, disorganised woman, but with a gift for empathy and a good platform technique.

Her familiar spirits are figures from her chaotic childhood, principal among them a small, foul-mouthed circus performer with disgusting personal habits called Morris who is her unpleasant and bitter spirit guide.

To try and create some order in her messy existence she has taken on an assistant, the highly efficient but essentially heartless Colette, who, although she is a regular witness to Alison's gift, is nevertheless a profoundly sceptical companion. The two of them are bound together by a need that neither wants to recognise.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Dramatised in ten parts by Caroline Harrington.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

Alison Hart is a professional medium, an awkward, obese, disorganised woman, but with a gift for empathy and a good platform technique.

Her familiar spirits are figures from her chaotic childhood, principal among them a small, foul-mouthed circus performer with disgusting personal habits called Morris who is her unpleasant and bitter spirit guide.

To try and create some order in her messy existence she has taken on an assistant, the highly efficient but essentially heartless Colette, who, although she is a regular witness to Alison's gift, is nevertheless a profoundly sceptical companion. The two of them are bound together by a need that neither wants to recognise.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Dramatised in ten parts by Caroline Harrington.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

02Colette's Story2010030220200226 (BBC7)
20200225 (BBC7)

Colette is an event organiser whose marriage to dull, conventional Gavin ends after she has the strange experience of holding a phone conversation with Gavin's mother, whom she later discovers is dead.

Colette's interest in the paranormal leads her to a Psychic Extravanganza in Windsor where professional medium Alison is performing, and to a subsequent consultation where Alison drops a bombshell about her father and then makes her a surprising job offer.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Gavin.... Mark Meadows
Natasha/Renee.... Adrienne O'Sullivan

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Colette leaves her dull husband, becomes interested in the paranormal and consults Alison.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

Colette is an event organiser whose marriage to dull, conventional Gavin ends after she has the strange experience of holding a phone conversation with Gavin's mother, whom she later discovers is dead.

Colette's interest in the paranormal leads her to a Psychic Extravanganza in Windsor where professional medium Alison is performing, and to a subsequent consultation where Alison drops a bombshell about her father and then makes her a surprising job offer.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Gavin.... Mark Meadows
Natasha/Renee.... Adrienne O'Sullivan

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Colette leaves her dull husband, becomes interested in the paranormal and consults Alison.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

03An Evil Thing2010030320200227 (BBC7)
20200226 (BBC7)

Colette decides Alison should publish a book, and starts to interview her on tape. She soon realises she's taken on more than she might want to know.

Alison's memories of her childhood in Aldershot turn out to be profoundly disturbing. Her mother arranged abortions for other women, but couldn't get rid of her own child, and may well have offered her to a succession of detestable petty thieves and abusers. They lived in squalor, Alison was neglected, and her school life and subsequent jobs were messed up by interfering spirits. She was rescued by a neighbour, Mrs Etchells, who claimed to be her grandmother, and who introduced her to the psychic world.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Emmie.... Katharine Rogers
Keith.... Simon Armstrong
Mrs McGibbet.... Sheila Hannon
Mrs Etchells.... June Barrie

Dramatised in ten parts by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Collette wants Alison to write a book, but her childhood memories are too disturbing.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

Colette decides Alison should publish a book, and starts to interview her on tape. She soon realises she's taken on more than she might want to know.

Alison's memories of her childhood in Aldershot turn out to be profoundly disturbing. Her mother arranged abortions for other women, but couldn't get rid of her own child, and may well have offered her to a succession of detestable petty thieves and abusers. They lived in squalor, Alison was neglected, and her school life and subsequent jobs were messed up by interfering spirits. She was rescued by a neighbour, Mrs Etchells, who claimed to be her grandmother, and who introduced her to the psychic world.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Emmie.... Katharine Rogers
Keith.... Simon Armstrong
Mrs McGibbet.... Sheila Hannon
Mrs Etchells.... June Barrie

Dramatised in ten parts by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Collette wants Alison to write a book, but her childhood memories are too disturbing.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

04Death Of A Princess2010030420200228 (BBC7)
20200227 (BBC7)

Colette is woken one night by Alison getting news from beyond of Princess Diana's fatal car crash.

The tragic accident means business will be heavy for all the psychics at the Psychic Fair in Nottingham, and they're not helped by Alison's disgusting spirit guide, Morris, who is more than usually irritating, patrolling the motorway services, desperate to find his mates, and interfering with Alison's friend Mandy.

As Alison becomes more disturbed by the darker side of her job, Morris finds his old mate Aitkenside, a development that throws Alison into despair.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Mandy.... Adrienne O'Sullivan
Silvana.... Jacqueline Tong

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Princess Diana's fatal crash means a busy time for Alison and her fellow psychics.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

Colette is woken one night by Alison getting news from beyond of Princess Diana's fatal car crash.

The tragic accident means business will be heavy for all the psychics at the Psychic Fair in Nottingham, and they're not helped by Alison's disgusting spirit guide, Morris, who is more than usually irritating, patrolling the motorway services, desperate to find his mates, and interfering with Alison's friend Mandy.

As Alison becomes more disturbed by the darker side of her job, Morris finds his old mate Aitkenside, a development that throws Alison into despair.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Mandy.... Adrienne O'Sullivan
Silvana.... Jacqueline Tong

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Princess Diana's fatal crash means a busy time for Alison and her fellow psychics.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

05Escape2010030520200229 (BBC7)
20200228 (BBC7)

Alison's disgusting spirit guide Morris has been joined by Donny Aitkenside, one of the violent group of petty criminals who were in and out of the house all through Alison's abusive childhood.

Alison knows the other members of the spirit gang can't be far behind, and decides the only way to escape them is to move to a new house where they won't want to follow her. Her assistant Colette locates a suitable new development, and the move has the desired effect: Morris hates it, and announces he's leaving.

At long last, Alison thinks, she's free.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Emmie.... Katharine Rogers
Aitkenside.... Simon Armstrong

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

A violent blast from Alison's past appears, and drastic measures are needed to escape.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

Alison's disgusting spirit guide Morris has been joined by Donny Aitkenside, one of the violent group of petty criminals who were in and out of the house all through Alison's abusive childhood.

Alison knows the other members of the spirit gang can't be far behind, and decides the only way to escape them is to move to a new house where they won't want to follow her. Her assistant Colette locates a suitable new development, and the move has the desired effect: Morris hates it, and announces he's leaving.

At long last, Alison thinks, she's free.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Emmie.... Katharine Rogers
Aitkenside.... Simon Armstrong

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

A violent blast from Alison's past appears, and drastic measures are needed to escape.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

06Alison's Good Action2010030820200303 (BBC7)
20200302 (BBC7)

Alison's disgusting spirit guide, Morris, seems to have disappeared, much to Alison's delight, leaving her to enjoy her new house unmolested. Colette decides that it's time for her to take a more proactive role in the business, but reading palms doesn't seem to be her forte, and an unexpected encounter with her ex, Gavin, leaves her rattled.

When a homeless young man takes up residence in the new garden shed, Alison sees an opportunity finally to perform a good action and lay the evil ghosts of her past to rest. But Colette has other ideas.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Gavin.... Mark Meadows
Mart.... Malcolm Hamilton

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Alison sees an opportunity finally to lay the evil ghosts of her past to rest.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

07The Fiends Are On Their Way2010030920200304 (BBC7)
20200303 (BBC7)

Alison is increasingly troubled by a sense of foreboding, which becomes stronger on the return of her horrible spirit guide Morris. Her young friend Mart, banished by Colette from the garden shed but working with a group of labourers over the road, tells her he's seen a white van full of boxes arrive looking for her.

The news brings back terrible memories to Alison, who fears that the events of her childhood - and the evil men who were part of them - are getting closer all the time. Meanwhile, her assistant Colette is more interested in getting their accounts sorted out.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Mandy.... Adrienne O'Sullivan
Mart.... Malcolm Hamilton

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Now that Morris has come back, Alison is increasingly troubled by a sense of foreboding.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

08Team Psychics2010031020200305 (BBC7)
20200304 (BBC7)

Alison is invited to take part with her fellow mediums in a Team Psychics show, but the event is disrupted when the elderly medium Mrs Etchells sees some unexpected figures in the back row of the audience.

The fiends from Alison's past are back, and they are intent on mischief. Their first victim is Mrs Etchells, who dies of a heart attack and brings Alison disturbing news from the other side.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Silvana.... Jacqueline Tong
Mrs Etchells.... June Barrie

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Alison is invited to take part with her fellow mediums in a Team Psychics show.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

09A Violent Death2010031120200306 (BBC7)
20200305 (BBC7)

Alison tries to get the truth about her childhood out of her mother, but Emmie won't give her a straight reply. It's not until the appalling Morris and his evil spirit friends have caused another shocking death that Alison begins to get some answers.

When Alison confronts Morris with the evil he's done, he counters by revealing the true extent of the vengeance that the young Alison took on her abusers. It's all too much for Colette, who announces she won't stay another day in the house.

Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Emmie.... Katharine Rogers

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

Alison tries to get the truth about her childhood out of her mother.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.

10Alison's Retribution2010031220200307 (BBC7)
20200306 (BBC7)

Alison knows that in order to banish the demons of her past she must face them and confront the painful truth about what happened in her childhood. With the help of Mrs McGibbet, yet another spirit from her past, Alison learns the worst.

Meanwhile, Colette goes back home to Gavin for a heart-to-heart. And Alison's appalling spirit guide Morris comes to a realisation...

Conclusion of Hilary Mantel's blackly comic novel about a professional medium with a troubled past.

Alison.... Alison Steadman
Colette.... Rosie Cavaliero
Morris.... Bill Wallis
Emmie.... Katharine Rogers
Aitkenside.... Simon Armstrong
Gavin.... Mark Meadows
Mrs McGibbet/Maureen.... Sheila Hannon

Dramatised by Caroline Harrington.

Director: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2010.

To banish her demons, Alison must confront the painful truth about her childhood.

A professional medium takes on a highly efficient but heartless assistant.