This month sees the release of Space Helmet for a Cow: The Mad, True Story of Doctor Who (1963-1989), and Doctor Who News, in association with Mad Norwegian Press is pleased to offer our readers an exclusive preview of the first section of the book, dealing with the Hartnell era of the show.
In Space Helmet for a Cow, Paul Kirkley provides a sweeping, wry and warm look at the behind-the-scenes story of Doctor Who – not just the greatest TV show ever made, but frequently the most insane TV show ever made. Which other programme, for example, would attempt to sink Atlantis, wage inter-planetary war and crash Concorde – all in BBC Television Centre, on a budget that would barely cover a sitcom?
This is the story of how, over 50 years, a bunch of very clever, very dedicated and sometimes plain crazy people made Doctor Who happen, often against seemingly insuperable odds; a story of triumph and tragedy, tears and tantrums, and an awful lot of men called Donald.
Space Helmet for a Cow also answers the burning questions few have dared tackle before. Questions like: How does a talking cabbage get an Equity card? What would have been in William Hartnell’s Glastonbury set? And if you meet a Yeti coming out of a loo in Tooting Bec, how long should you give it?
Doctor Who News is able to offer a free download of the first 40 pages of the book, dealing with the creation of Doctor Who, from the first discussions led by Sydney Newman, through the production of the first three years, to the departure of the show's star William Hartnell.
The full version of Space Helmet for a Cow: The Mad, True Story of Doctor Who is published on March 24 by Mad Norwegian Press.