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Spellbinder - Series 1

Synopsis

Spellbinder follows the adventures of urban teenager, Paul Reynolds, who finds himself accidentally stranded in a parallel world. It's a world where the industrial revolution never happened and people live simple lives in rustic villages. They are ruled by the Spellbinders, who use magical powers to manipulate people's fear and ignorance. New ideas are not allowed.

Spellbinderis a compelling science fiction (SF) fantasy drama series, with particular appeal to middle years students.The series and its online educational resources can be used to explore SF and fantasy genres, while tackling complex science and technology concepts.

SF and fantasy are popular genres, offering an exciting and rich range of genre conventions for exploration in the classroom. Spellbinder is a strong example of both genres. Written by John Thompson and Mark Shirrefs, the series was filmed in Australia and Poland, with its spectacular medieval castles and forests. This award winning series of 26 x 30 minute episodes was produced by Film Australia.

 

Supporting Resources

Video Clips

Spellbinder - Trailer

A freak accident transports suburban teenager Paul to a parallel world! Here, the Industrial Revolution never happened and a powerful group called Spellbinders control the people by exploiting their fear and ignorance. Helped by a young girl, Riana, Paul must gather help from both worlds at the same time - or be marooned forever.

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Episodes

Episode 1

A school excursion turns into a disaster when Paul disappears, As part of a practical joke. Paul and his friend Alex set up a cable but it passes close to power lines. A strange electrical surge passes through the cable and explodes Paul into parallel universe. Uncertain of his new surroundings Paul is confronted by a strange man, a Summoner who us angered when Paul steals his Eyestone.

Episode 2

Paul's classmates and the Police are searching for him around the site where he disappeared, But Paul is trying to come to terms with his new and primitive surroundings. He has met a girl, Rhiannon but she is suspicious of his foreign ways and fears he is evil. She leaves him to his own devices and his strange ways offend the people of this new world, particularly the powerful Spellbinders.

Episode 3

Paul manages to convince a frightened Rhiannon that he is from another world. Together they make their way back to the place where Paul entered this new world. Seeing an electrical surge building up Paul recognises his chance to get home. But on the other side the Police are still looking for Paul and fearing the danger of an electrical surge they knock down the pillars which are feeding the surge destroying Paul's chances of returning home. Rhiannon takes Paul back to her village.

Episode 4

Rhiannon arranges it so that Paul can live and work in her village. He finds the work in the fields unnecessarily difficult. Rhiannon explains that things must be done according to the Spellbinders instructions. Paul becomes sceptical about the Spellbinders powers and soon realises that they are using science not magic to appear powerful. The power suits that they wear have some kind of electrical energy. Paul tries to explain to the local Spellbinder, Gryphon that he is from another world. He shows him things he has brought from his world and asks for some help to get home, but Gryphon accuses him of breaking Spellbinder law. Paul gets an opportunity to show of his unique talents by making fireworks which save the village from ravaging marauders, but Gryphon takes him away to be judged.

Episode 5

Paul is brought before the Council of Regents in the Spellbinder's castle and is found guilty of stealing an Eyestone. He is banished to the wastelands for breaking Spellbinder law. One Spellbinder, Kasha is curious about Paul and is sympathetic to his story. She tries to convince the Council of his innocence. As a result, Paul is put in a cell while the council decide what to do with him. Rhiannon is making her way to the Spellbinder castle in an attempt to return Paul's video tape to him, hoping this will help him convince the spellbinders that he is from another world. Meanwhile, Paul's family, friends and the Police are still desperately looking for him back in his own world. One girl, Katrina, is convinced he has gone into a parallel universe but no one will believe her.

Episode 6

Kasha and Gryphon realise the potential of Paul's fireworks, and how powerful they would be if they knew how to make them. They plan to learn the secret from Paul. Rhiannon manages to sneak into the Spellbinders castle and finds Paul's video recorder in the hands of a Regent named Connery. She puts the tape in and shows him how the recorder works, playing back his image. Connery is fascinated and takes it to show the other Regents, they all question Paul about his world. Gryphon and Kasha realise that this could destroy their plans of becoming powerful. Kasha and Gryphon plot to get Paul to themselves, by telling the guards that Rhiannon and Paul have escaped.

Episode 7

Gryphon takes Paul to an unused part of the castle and insists he teach him how to make gunpowder. Meanwhile, Rhiannon has convinced Connery that Paul has been abducted and they set off in search of him. They find Paul demonstrating the destructive power of gunpowder to Gryphon and Kasha. Once they know how to make their own gunpowder, Gryphon and Kasha are no longer interested in helping Paul. However, Paul had grown suspicious of Gryphon and Kasha and had given them false instructions, so their gunpowder won't work. Connery, having observed the strength of the gunpowder, realises that Paul's knowledge is too dangerous for their world and insists on helping him return to his world. Connery lures Kasha back to the castle and captures Gryphon.

Episode 8

Back in Paul's universe Katrina has managed to convince another of Paul's friends of her suspicions as to where Paul is. They make their way back to the cave where he disappeared. Meanwhile Paul and his rescuers are heading for the cave where he entered this new world. Katrina and Alex have made radio contact with the new world. They see energy rippling around the cave and get vague glimpses of figures in the doorway. Paul's attempts to pass back into his world are thwarted by the Kasha and Gryphon who have united to search for Paul and Connery. Paul flees to a nearby village only to be attacked by Marauders.

Episode 9

The Marauders turn out to be regular people who had been banished by the Spellbinders and so disguised themselves. They capture Paul, Rhiannon and Connery and take them to their camp in a labyrinth on the edge of the forest. Kasha and Gryphon have combined forces with another Spellbinder, Lucas, convincing him they ate chasing renegades they close on the trail of Paul and the Marauders. Paul manages to convince one of the Marauders of his story. He helps him get equipment and directs him out of the labyrinth.

Episode 10

Paul makes his way back to the cave, this time with a chain which will act as a conductor to create an electrical surge and help him return home. Paul's friends back home, Alex and Katrina, try again to make radio contact with Paul. They set up a two way radio and make contact through Kasha's Eyestone. Alex and Katrina pick up that Paul is in trouble and transmit a warning to him. Paul hears the warning but is out of the labyrinth, making his way back to the cave. He fears for his new found friends safety so returns to the labyrinth to save them. The Spellbinders pursue Paul and his friends through the labyrinth, eventually capturing Paul and flying him back to their castle. Kasha wants to take Connery's position as a Regent, so misinforms all that he has been killed by Marauders. Kasha gets elected to the Council of Regents in Connery's place.

Episode 11

Kasha takes over Connery's position and settles into his rooms. She demands that Paul tells her how to make gunpowder but he gives her another incorrect formula. Connery returns to the Spellbinder castle to take his position but has to duel with Kasha. Gryphon rigs the dual so that Connery looses. Paul pleads for Connery's life to be spared, in return he will give them the formula for the gunpowder. Connery gets banished into the wasteland. Rhiannon is now the only hope of saving Paul and Connery. She is hiding outside the castle. Katrina and Alex try again to make radio contact with Paul, their transmission comes through Gryphon's Eyestone and Paul yells back he is being held prisoner. Paul is administered with a truth potion which was stolen from the Marauders. Kasha interrogates Paul under the influence of the truth drug and discovers that he has no practical knowledge about the weapons of his world. Rhiannon disguises herself as a servant and sneaks into the castle. Together her and Paul overpower Kash and Gryphon, steal Gryphon's power suit and escape through the castle. They break out from the castle grounds in a Spellbinder flying ship. Paul makes contact with Katrina via an Eyestone and arranges for her to set up a cable at the cave so he can open the doorway and get home at a specified time. Realising that Paul is going to escape back into his world, Kasha shuts down the power to Paul's flying ship.

Episode 12

Paul's flying ship plummets out of the sky and Paul gets trapped. Wearing Gryphon's power suit he is able to pretend to be a Spellbinder. He and Rhiannon are rescued by a local farmer who directs them to a nearby town. Kasha sends out Summoners to search for Paul and Rhiannon. Realising that the Summoners are close on their trail Paul and Rhiannon have to resort to floating down the river to escape. Alex and Katrina have troubles making plans for getting back up to the cave to help Paul return to his own world. Paul and Rhiannon make their way to Rhiannon's village to get a chain to help them open the doorway to Paul's world. But they are putting Rhiannon's family is put at risk.

Episode 13

Paul and Rhiannon get caught by Summoners and Rhiannon's family help them to escape, now they must all flee the village. Paul wearing a power suit manages to open the doorway into his world but unbeknown to him, Kasha is hiding, waiting for an opportunity to pass into his world. Katrina's voice comes over Kasha's Eyestone, alerting Paul to Kasha's presence. There is a struggle between Kasha and Paul at the mouth of the cave. Rhiannon arrives and distracts Kasha and Paul is able to pass into his world. He returns back to see Rhiannon threatened by Kasha so grabs her and drags her into his world. A frightened Rhiannon stares at the immensity of the world she has come to.

Episode 14

As Paul pulls Rhiannon into his world Kasha fires a bolt if energy which destroys the Summoning Tower. The doorway closes behind Rhiannon, stranding her in Paul's world. Leaving the two-way radio set up so Connery can contact them when he has rebuilt the Tower, they start walking to the railway station, where Rhiannon gets lost. Paul is adamant that Katrina and Alex keep the Spellbinders' world a secret. They make a promise but Katrina is not happy. Paul and Alex go to Paul's home to get help in finding Rhiannon but the police are there, having been alerted by a woman who recognised Paul on the train. Paul tells Alex to take the power suit and goes to meet his father. Wandering through the city, Rhiannon's odd behaviour attracts unwanted attention. She has some fun, but mostly frightening experiences. She is chased and in desperation, takes refuge by climbing a building.

Episode 15

Rhiannon is rescued and questioned by the authorities. She is terrified. They think she is crazy and take her to the hospital. At school the next day. Katrina shows Paul and Alex a photo of Rhiannon in the paper. The authorities are trying to find out who she is. Paul shows his father the photo and begs him to take him to the hospital. The doctor is beginning to suspect that Rhiannon is some kind of "wild child". The doctor concludes that Rhiannon must have helped Paul in the bush and that Paul is suffering hallucinations and amnesia as a result of his ordeal. Rhiannon tries to escape from the hospital but is caught and placed in a security ward. Paul and Alex repair the power suit to try to prove Paul's story to Brian. Paul puts it on and energises it. Every electrical device in Alex's house and the surrounding houses blows out. Paul realises that the suit has some unexpected effects in his world.

Episode 16

A despondent Paul meets up with Alex and they try to visit Rhiannon. She pleads with them to get her out. That night Paul and Alex use the power suit to get past security systems and break into the hospital. The suit's magnetic field damages the hospital computers. They rescue Rhiannon and escape. They take Rhiannon back to Paul's house. Paul hides Rhiannon just before Brian comes in to take Paul and Christine to school. Alone, Rhiannon is amazed, amused and frightened by the appliances and amenities of Paul's house. When Paul returns home he finds Rhiannon has made a huge mess. Christine comes in and Paul is forced to tell the truth. Christine gets on well with Rhiannon and agrees to help hide her and keep the secret. They clean up before Brian gets home.

Episode 17

Rhiannon begs Paul to allow her to come to school with him. With the help of a forged note. Paul passes Rhiannon off as his cousin from Poland. Despite Paul's anxiety, Rhiannon is able to fit in well. Katrina threatens to dob in Rhiannon if Paul doesn't allow her to use the power suit to convince her parents. Alex supports Katrina. Paul receives a radio message from Connery. The summoning Tower has been rebuilt. They can take Rhiannon home. Paul heads over to Alex's to get him and the power suit. They discover that the suit is gone. Paul realises in horror that Katrina must have taken it. They race to Katrina's. At home, Katrina finishes putting the power suit on. She manages to turn it on. Power flickers at her finger tips.

Episode 18

Paul and Alex race to Katrina's house as she gets the suit working. They get the suit back. Unable to find Paul at school. Rhiannon goes back to his house. No one is home so she breaks in. Brian catches her and calls the police. Terrified, she breaks away and runs. Paul tells the police that he knows nothing. The next day, Rhiannon goes to the school, looking for Paul. She gives a message to the teacher to pass on to Paul, which he does not receive until the next day. Paul and Alex take the power suit to the rendezvous. Paul recognises the trail of Spellbinder eyes Rhiannon had left for him and starts to follow them. Meanwhile, Rhiannon is spotted by the police. They chase her. Paul activated the power suit and rescues her.

Episode 19

Paul convinces Brian that he is going fishing for the weekend with Alex and his father, when he is really planning on going back to the Spellbinder's world. When Paul and Rhiannon arrive at the cave they use the radio to contact Connery. Connery opens the doorway and they step through to Rhiannon's world. Connery tells them that Kasha is still at large but poses no threat to the Spellbinders. Connery reveals that he has Paul's video camera with him. Paul starts filming proceedings so that he will have some proof for Katrina. Gryphon sneaks away and goes to Kasha who is hiding out in the forest. Kasha realises that this is her chance to get the gunpowder formula from Paul. Gryphon lures Paul to the outskirts of Clayhill where Kasha captures him.

Episode 20

Rhiannon finds and rescues Paul but leaves the video camera behind. Kasha flees and Connery calls for flying ships to search for her. With Gryphon's help she steals an Eyestone, opens the doorway and enters into Paul's world. Paul returns to his world without the video camera, Katrina and Alex are furious that there is no proof of the other world. Paul reconciles with his father assuring him that everything is going to be fine. But disturbing news reports of strange event make him realise that a Spellbinder is visiting his world.

Episode 21

Kasha is having a hard time in Paul's world. She uses the power suit in an electrical store and all of the appliances go haywire. Paul sees a report about the event and realises that a Spellbinder must be in his world ? Kasha. At school, Katrina finds Paul and Alex in the science lab building two electromagnetic detectors. She suspects what they are up to but they deny it, she decides to search on her own. Katrina visits the electrical shop where Kasha used her power suit and follows the magnetic signposts Kasha has left. Katrina finds Kasha who discovers that Katrina was a friend of Paul's and can be very useful to her. Kasha makes up a story about needing medicines to combat an epidemic in her world. Katrina agrees to help her. Katrina helps Kasha rent a room where she learns about this world. Kasha decides to rob an armoured car using her power suit. Paul and Alex detect the event and head for the city.

Episode 22

Pretending to be room service, Alex locates Kasha. Katrina surprises them and is about to call for help but Paul convinces her that Kasha is up to no good. Kasha returns to the room and the boys have to hide. Pail grabs the power suit and throws it into the garbage truck where it is crushed. When Paul heads home, Kasha follows and spied on his family before returning to the cave. In Rhiannon's world, Gryphon steals the Eyestone and sneaks up to the Summoning Tower where Rhiannon sees him open the door to Paul's world and is shocked to see Kasha step through. After following them to the castle, Rhiannon makes a noise and is caught. They seal her in the vault with the skeleton's of the old Spellbinders/

Episode 23

Using all her strength and cunning, Rhiannon manages to escape from the vault. She reaches the Summoning Tower just in time to see Kasha step through to Paul's world, where she follows her. Brian is hard at work at Newtown Industries when he gets a call that a woman has arrived to see him ? it is Kasha! She shows Brian the book she obtained from the vault. He is flattered when Kasha tells him that she sought him out because of his scientific reputation. He agrees to work with Kasha in discovering the book's secrets. That night Rhiannon climbs in through the bedroom window and surprises Paul. She warns him about Kasha and her plan to build a power suit ? they set out to find her. When Paul comes home from school the next day she hides Rhiannon, Brian arrives and wants to introduce his new girlfriend. Paul is horrified to discover it is Kasha!

Episode 24

Paul tries to warn his father about Kasha but Brian gets angry at hearing Paul repeat his old story and takes Kasha to his lab to work on the book. Rhiannon tells Paul she has the videotape of her world so he can prove to Brian that he has been telling the truth. Brian is infuriated by his son's behaviour and refuses to look at the tape. Rhiannon sneaks into the lab and tries to steal the book which contains the power suit plans. Kasha catches her and takes her back to her house and locks her up. Paul turns to his friend Alex for help, but Alex's father tells Paul to leave. Kasha reveals to Paul that she has Rhiannon and warns him not to cause any trouble. In desperation, Paul stows away in the boot of Kasha's car to find out where she is hiding Rhiannon.

Episode 25

Paul realises he'll need help to save Rhiannon and tips off Katrina and Alex. Katrina contrives to meet Kasha and manages to slip into her house before she can be stopped. Katrina booby traps the security system so that they can get in later. Paul encourages his father to ask Kasha to lunch and puts laxatives in her food. While Brian is tending the sick Kasha, Paul sneaks out. Paul, Alex and Katrina rescue Rhiannon and find a case of money from the armoured car robbery. They inadvertently start the alarm and the group splits up to get away from the police. Paul and Rhiannon make their way to Paul's father's lab where they are shocked to see that Brian has finished building the new power suit.

Episode 26

Brian, Paul and Rhiannon are pursued through the building by Kasha. They are no match for the powers of the new suit. Kasha catches them, locks them up and tells them she is destroying all evidence of her work. She starts a fire in the building. Brian realises there is a copy of the power suit plan on the computer at home and Christine is there on her own. They escape from the building and try to ring Christine from the car phone. She doesn't hear the phone so they contact Alex and Katrina who make their way to Paul's house. Over the phone Paul instructs Alex on how to make a copy of the file but the phone goes dead. Christine screams as Kasha arrives, but Katrina takes her out the back door to safety. Brian, Paul and Rhiannon arrive to confront Kasha. Alex manages to get a disk to Paul. Kasha realises what has happened and races after them. Paul and Rhiannon take refugee at the docks but Kasha corners Rhiannon. Paul uses a huge electro-magnet to short out Kasha'a power suit. Kasha is helpless and runs for it. Brian drives Paul, Alex, Christine, Katrina and Rhiannon to the cave where Paul bids Rhiannon a final Farewell and she goes back to her world. Paul pulls the cable and closes the doorway. With Brian's help, Paul, Alex and Katrina lure Kasha into a trap using the stolen money. The Police arrive and arrest her, she is hauled off, pleading she is from another world.

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  • Spellbinder - Series 1

    Spellbinder - Series 1

    DVD TV Series Episodes 1-26

  • Year Level

    Middle Years (5-9)

    Curriculum Study Areas

    English, Media Arts (The Arts), Science

    Mediatype

    TV

    Themes

    social responsibility

    Awards

    Selected: USA New York Festivals