Joe 90 – tape 1829

Here’s a dip into Children’s BBC for some junior spy action. The tape opens with the end of a Felix The Cat cartoon. This new version had theme music by Mark Mothersbaugh, formerly of Devo, now a film composer.

Then, Phillippa Forrester does a link from the CBBC broom cupboard. She seems a little tired, but I guess it is 7:45am.

Then, Joe 90, with the episode Most Special Astronaut. A space station is left dangerously short on air when a restocking mission blows up on launch. There aren’t any more trained astronauts (!) so Joe has to step in, but the world Intelligence Network take great pains to hide him from mission control.

Most Special Astronaur.

Next, there’s more from Phillippa in the broom cupboard.

Judging by the football reference, this is probably 14th May. It’s hard to say, and the Radio Times isn’t any help as it doesn’t distinguish episodes.

Then, Hijacked, where Joe has to take on a dangerous arms dealer with no qualms about killing a little boy.



BBC Genome: BBC One London, 14 May 1994 7.45

Another very short intro from Phillippa Forrester before the next episode, Colonel McClaine, in which Joe has to convince two military drives that he’s a colonel, and guide them as they transport dangerously unstable explosive aross some very rough terrain. I think Gerry Anderson’s writing team really loved The Wages of Fear as this is the plot from that film, and they’ve done it before in Thunderbirds.

Colonel McClaine


BBC Genome: BBC One London, 21 May 1994 7.45

There’s more Felix and a little bit of the broom cupboard before the next episode, The Fortress. Joe goes camping.

The Fortress


BBC Genome: BBC One London, 28 May 1994 7.45

Before the next episode, more Felix, and another short burst of ms Forrester. Then, King For a Day, in which Joe has to black up to pretend to be a young Arab King in waiting.

King for a Day


BBC Genome: BBC One London, 4 June 1994 7.45

That’s the last episode of Joe 90 on this tape, but this recording runs on for quite a bit longer. Here’s more of Phillipa Forrester.

There’s an episode of Prince Valiant, with what sounds like a theme tune by Mister Mister. There’s a trailer for Activ-8 and Parallel 9, then Phillipa introduces Round The Twist.

After this, Phillipa bids us goodbye, and Parallel 9 starts. Here’s the introduction.

This recording finishes during this show, but underneath there’s an older recording, with snooker between Steve Davis and Steven Hendry. The tape ends after five minutes of this.




  1. If this was a decade or so ago, the repeated references to Flipper Forrester would make this one of the most popular pages on the internet. This was the last knockings of the Broom Cupboard (and towards the end of Flipper’s stint on CBBC) because come the autumn they’d move to a proper studio, which was a bit of an end of an era because I don’t think the Broom Cupboard concept has ever been bettered in terms of its intimate approach and its bond with the audience.

    This was during the period when the Beeb were having great success with Thunderbirds, Stingray and Captain Scarlet on Friday teatimes, but Joe 90 was dumped during CBBC.

  2. Whatever happened to Zee? She was the best bit of Parallel 9. Though whenever I hear her name in my head, it’s in a plaintive Australian accent.

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