Posts Tagged With: patrick troughton

The Enemy of the World of the Doctor

We have yet to see the artwork for the upcoming Troughton release. So here’s my contribution. (Thanks to Gareth for the caption idea.)

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Be careful what you wish for

I’ve got a sneaking suspicion that I may have altered the URL of my last entry after I’d sent it out, which may well have rendered it inaccessible. So if you missed out on Dalek Caan talking like Johnny the painter from The Fast Show, here’s the updated link.

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock (waiting for Tom Baker to come and look at you) for the past few days, you’ll know all about the BBC’s recent announcement that they’ve found most of ‘The Web of Fear’ and ‘The Enemy of the World’, two lost gems from the lost archives of the Second Doctor. This rumour has been circulating all year, of course, although the actual size of the haul has decreased from 105 episodes down to about 9 over the months, while the location of discovery has shifted from Ethopia to Nigeria. It would be easy to suggest, rather cynically, that the discovery occurred at the end of winter, the negotiations finished in spring and that the BBC drafted the press release before the summer solstice, and then held off on the announcement until mere weeks before the anniversary story in order to ensure maximum publicity. But I am not going to do that. Honest.

One of the most amusing comments I read came courtesy of an Independent reader, who quipped:

Dear Sir,
I am the nephew of a deceased Nigerian general and have discovered a vast cache of vintage film classics among his possessions. They could be worth several billion pounds if they can be sold to international media distributors. However, I need a reliable person in the UK with a legitimate bank account…

Elsewhere, there are the usual grumblings from fans who are complaining about the iTunes release plan. “Some were saying that if lots of people buy those then the BBC might not bother releasing DVDs because no-one will want to buy them twice,” said Gareth. “Others were saying that if too few buy the iTunes (e.g., because they’re waiting for the DVDs) then the BBC might not bother releasing DVDs because there’s clearly no interest.  Silly!” Of course, the DVDs of both adventures are due – in November and February – and they will be well received, because you can never have too much of Patrick Troughton.

I had an idea a while back for a Doctor Who story in which the Tenth Doctor and Martha are asked by a wise and learned people to travel back in time and recover some sacred scrolls that are vital to their future. The Doctor does this, only to find that the scrolls contain a secret so terrible it must never be revealed, and he takes it upon himself to see it’s destroyed. I know I just said you can never have too much of Patrick Troughton, but I can’t help wondering whether some of these episodes should stay buried. In any event, this whole thing makes me wonder what’ll happen when we eventually stop collecting physical media just consign everything to the cloud. I know that DVDs and Blu Rays don’t last forever, and I know that the servers are hidden in bomb-proof hangars underneath international airports (meaning that in the event of a nuclear apocalypse and the collapse of the global infrastructure, we’ll still be able to watch Doctor Who), but what happens when the terrorists work out a way to wipe out the internet and hold us all to ransom? Would we really be willing to sacrifice our freedom so that the likes of lolcatz can survive? I’m not sure I would, although I might make an exception for rathergood.com, particularly this one.

Of course, if we’re being futurist and cynical at the same time, we might end up with something like this.

 

Using one crap episode to exploit another is a bit self-referential, of course, but that’s the story of my life.

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The Blue Box of Delights, and other matters

Having reached the series six mid-point, we are having a temporary hiatus from Doctor Who, at least until after Christmas. It is causing over-anxiety and possibly nightmares and I am, in any case, bloody sick of River Song. We will reconvene in the New Year, after the decorations come down. It can wait until then.

To fill in the time, and to get everyone in a seasonal mood, Joshua and Daniel and I have spent the last week watching The Box of Delights, the 1984 adaptation of John Masefield’s classic. It’s aged quite well for a BBC fantasy drama production – some of the effects are ropey, but the chrome painted effects still hold up, and it features a despicable villain and any number of memorable sequences (even if the ending features an unforgivable literary conceit). Still, the thought occurred – about halfway through the week – that in order to escape from Who we’re watching a BBC family adventure serial starring Patrick Troughton as a mysterious, wild-eyed eccentric who claims to have either travelled in time or lived for hundreds of years (or both), and who is seldom without a mystical sentient box that appears to be bigger on the inside. The irony of this is not lost on me.

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Yesterday afternoon, Emily got out the gingerbread house kit that we never got round to assembling last year, and built it, with a little help from two of the boys. Here it is.

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When I posted this on Facebook, a few people pointed out how out of character it was that I hadn’t covered the scene with Doctor Who characters. Conscious of time this morning, but not wanting to let them down, I obliged.

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Amy’s new fancy dress costume was the bee’s knees, but it wasn’t without its problems.

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“Bloody carol singers.”

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“Why did no one tell us we looked like David Cameron?”

Yes, of course I’m procrastinating. You would too, in a study this untidy.

 

 

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