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Series / Wilderness Edge

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Out, out on the edge...
— Theme song

Wilderness Edge is a 1992 ITV children's drama series written by John Coombes and Martin Riley.

The Wilderness Edge outdoor pursuits centre is about to embark upon an experiment: their latest group of children includes a number of young offenders, who are attending as part of their rehabilitation. And the son of their major investor, who's got his own ideas about how the place should be run. How will the youngsters, and the adults, cope?


This show provides examples of:

  • Audience Surrogate: Holly is written to be this; it's she who narrates the trailer, and is the initial viewpoint character in the novelisation.
  • Delinquents: Four of the children. Debby and her sidekick Holly, sent on the course after being caught shoplifting; and thuggish Chris and his hanger-on Lee.
  • Extreme Doormat: At the start, Holly is firmly under Debby's thumb. Over the course of the series, she develops some much-needed self confidence.
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!: No-one uses bad language; the closest anyone gets is Debby's "Faffing heck!"
  • The Heavy: Chris is far too ready to think with his fists.
  • The Inspector Is Coming: On top of everything else the adults have to cope with, the council's representative is making an inspection of Wilderness Edge.
  • Linked List Clue Methodology: Liz sets up a linked list of clues for the children to follow; the result is rather more chaotic than she'd hoped, as they repeatedly draw the wrong conclusions and act on them.
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  • Oop North: Set on Derwentwater in the Lake District.
  • Running Gag: Debby never gets a chance to smoke the cigarettes she cadges, steals or obtains by other less-than-honest means.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Luke doesn't react well to the idea of drowning - unfortunate, when so many of the activities take place in boats.

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