Blog Tour – ‘The Loop’ and ‘The Block’

Hello and welcome to my stop on the blog tour celebrating The Loop and The Block by Ben Oliver. These were – and are! – such interesting books to be involved with, so my thanks to Chicken House Books for everything.

Today I’m sharing a very special post; Ben Oliver’s dream cast for The Loop TV show! Unfortunately as with all things dream related, a time machine would be needed for some of his choices, but if I share the synopsis from The Loop (I won’t be sharing the synopsis from The Block because of spoilers but you can read it here if you would like) hopefully his choices will make sense. I was certainly nodding along with some of them, and I’d love to hear your thoughts too.

The Loop Synopsis
Life inside The Loop-the futuristic death row for teens under eighteen-is one long repetitive purgatory. But when news of the encroaching chaos in the outside world reaches the inmates and disorder begins to strike, the prison becomes the least of their worries.

It’s Luka Kane’s sixteenth birthday and he’s been inside The Loop for over two years. Every inmate is serving a death sentence with the option to push back their execution date by six months if they opt into “Delays”, scientific and medical experiments for the benefit of the elite in the outside world. But rumors of a war on the outside are spreading amongst the inmates, and before they know it, their tortuous routine becomes disrupted. The government issued rain stops falling. Strange things are happening to the guards. And it’s not long until the inmates are left alone inside the prison.

Were the chains that shackled Luka to his cell the only instruments left to keep him safe? He must overcome fellow prisoners hell-bent on killing him, the warden losing her mind, the rabid rats in the train tunnels, and a population turned into murderous monsters to try and break out of The Loop, save his family, and discover who is responsible for the chaos that has been inflicted upon the world. 

Here’s what Ben has to say about his dream casting!


I was very very lucky – The Loop was optioned by a production company early in my publication journey. The idea that The Loop might be turned into a TV show was so far off my radar that when the news came in, I was in a state of shock for at least a week. But when it had all sunk in, and I started to daydream about what the TV show might look like, the inevitable question arose in my mind: Who would be in my dream cast?

It’s a tricky question, because young actors don’t stay young for long, so the cast I’d choose today might be too old in a few years. So – I thought I’d bend the rules of the question a little bit and choose my ideal cast from the history of film and television.

  1. Luka Kane – played by Rony Clanton as he was in 1963’s The Cool World.
  2. Kina Campbell – played by Ivana Baquero as she was in Pan’s Labyrinth in 2006.
  3. Galen Rye – played by Hugh Grant as he is now.
  4. Malachai Bannister – played by River Phoenix as he was in Stand by Me, 1986.
  5. Pander Banks – played by Quvenzhané Wallis as she was in 2014’s Annie.
  6. Wren Salter – played by Dakota Fanning as she was in Night Moves, 2013.

Of course, this cast isn’t possible without a time-machine and the very questionable ethical decisions to bring a few people back from the dead to star in a TV show. My dream, however, is for The Loop TV show to be so good that it makes stars out of talented unknown actors. That would be the ideal outcome.

Thank you to Ben for his time in putting his content for this post – that really made me smile on a grey day! – together, and to Chicken House Books for all their hard work.

THE LOOP and THE BLOCK by Ben Oliver are out now, each priced £7.99. Read chapter 1 of THE LOOP here.


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