The Demon Headmaster

by Gillian Cross

Hi, my name is Urban, and this is my short presentation about The Demon Headmaster.

The Demon Headmaster is a series of books by Gillian Cross which were later adapted as a television series starring Terrence Hardiman in the title role and Frances Amey as Dinah.

The title character is a strange being with the powers of hypnosis and a desire to take over the world, as he believes it will be better under his ordered rule. He has piercing light green eyes, which he normally hides behind dark-tinted glasses - removing these in order to hypnotise his victim(s).

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Short summary

Dinah Glass moves in with Lloyd and Harvey Hunter and at first does not like them. Soon she discovers that at her new school, the Headmaster is very strange and she finds herself saying things like, "I think the Headmaster is a marvellous man and this is the best school I've ever been to". With the help of her new friends, SPLAT, the children at the school who are immune to the Demon Headmaster's hypnotic powers, she successfully stops the Headmaster's plot to hypnotise the country through the Eddy Hair Television Show and she gets adopted by the Hunters. This became the first three episodes of the first series of the television adaptation.
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The Demon Headmaster Intro

The Headmaster (character)

The Headmaster is the main antagonist of the series. He can turn almost anyone into a hypnotic state by having them look in to his eyes, except for a few who seem to be naturally immune, among them Ingrid, Mandy, Harvey, Lloyd and Ian. He seems to be driven by a desire to bring order and control to the world, under his leadership of course. Not much else is revealed about him or the origin of his power. His name is never mentioned, as he is always referred to by various titles, such as The Headmaster and The Computer Director, though it's known that he does have a name - in fact a central plot point of The Demon Headmaster Takes Over is finding it.
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Dinah Glass/Hunter (character)

Dinah is the main protagonist in the story The Demon Headmaster by Gillian Cross. She arrives in the story at the Hunters' house as a foster child, having been orphaned at an early age and brought up in a children's home. She is extraordinarily intelligent, but she normally keeps this quiet. Her intelligence causes the Headmaster to take an interest in her, and makes her pivotal in his plans to win a national school quiz competition for nefarious ends, as well as other subsequent plots, made easier by the fact that she is the only member of SPLAT not immune to his hypnosis. At the end of the first story, Dinah is adopted by the Hunter family and becomes Dinah Hunter.
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Reading order

  • The Demon Headmaster
  • The Prime Minister's Brain
  • The Revenge of the Demon Headmaster
  • The Demon Headmaster Strikes Again
  • The Demon Headmaster Takes Over
  • Facing the Demon Headmaster
  • Beware of the Demon Headmaster