As we approach the 60th Anniversary of Doctor Who, revisit the story of Doctor Who, the occasional series written for the 50th Anniversary, explaining the origins of the programme.

Episode 4 - An Unearthly Series - The Origins of a TV Legend: First published 25 Jul 2012

DVD UpdateBookmark and Share

Friday, 15 June 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster

Planet of Giants:

The British Board of Film Classification has passed the special features for the forthcoming DVD release of the final complete William Hartnell story to be released, Planet of Giants:

00:28:01:16 DOCTOR WHO - CRISIS
00:15:17:10 SUDDENLY SUSAN

As previously reported, the release will feature a recreation of the original four-part story based on the original scripts and featuring newly recorded dialogue and animation. The commentary by Clive Doig, Brian Hodgson, Sonia Markham and David Tilley was also passed on 6th June.

A clean version of the cover art by Lee Binding for the DVD has been published via the Tea-Lady Design Facebook page.

Future Release Updates:

Lee Binding has reported that an announcement about The Ambassadors Of Death will be made in the next week or so. The graphic designer recently completed the DVD cover, saying: "Ambassadors sleeve submitted to @classicdw. No Liz Shaw on the front, sadly. No decent pics. Rest: kinda classy, which is nice. « I'm sure the usual #doctorwho ming-mongs will complain anyway. 'It's not GREEN. Ambassadors is a GREEN story!' *rolls eyes* «" Meanwhile, an image of the colourisation process for the story undertaken by Richard Russell was shared on Twitter by Stuart Humphryes (aka @Babelcolour), who himself is working on episode one of The Mind of Evil.

Brian Hodgson recently mentioned that he had recorded a commentary for the incomplete Patrick Troughton adventure The Moonbase. It is currently unknown if this is for a Revisitations makeover of the 2004 Lost In Time collection of existing, isolated episodes, or if it will form part of a special release of the story with an animated reconstruction of the missing episodes one and three. The Special Sound Designer also mentioned a commentary for Fury From The Deep, though this seems more likely to be for The Underwater Menace, of which episode two was recovered last year - again, the context of such a release is currently unknown.

Behind The Scenes:

Producer Chris Chapman tantalised the Twitter community this week with updates on extras being made for the series: "Heading back to London after a day of exciting Doctor Who stuff - storyboard complete! « About to start the edit proper on Secret Project 5 (our 31st Who doco) - this one's a bit mad, a bit Louis Theroux and a bit golf-y.. « SP5 is presented by Toby Hadoke and is intended for the same DVD release as SP6 (which hits the edit next week)! «"

Finally, a small event in the history of the range was marked on 29th May, reported by the BBC's Classic Series Twitter feed: "Many thanks to Ed Stradling for all his hard work, as he delivers his final documentary. Hope to persuade him back for the odd special!"

FILTER: - Jon Pertwee - William Hartnell - Classic Series - Blu-ray/DVD - Patrick Troughton

Classic Episodes Cardiff ScreeningBookmark and Share

Thursday, 10 May 2012 - Reported by Marcus
The two recovered Doctor Who episodes Galaxy 4 - Air Lock and The Underwater Menace episode 2 were shown to an appreciative audience in Cardiff on Wednesday evening.

Both episodes were recovered from a collector last year and their existence was revealed at a screening at the BFI in London last December. The episode of The Underwater Menace was shown in full at the Missing Believed Wiped event but only an excerpt of about 10 minutes from Galaxy 4 was played, making the Cardiff screening the first time the whole episode had been seen in the UK since its initial transmission in September 1965.

The event was attended by Peter Purves, who played Steven in Galaxy 4, along with Anneke Wills and Frazer Hines, who played Polly and Jamie in The Underwater Menace. Following the screening, all three joined current show-runner Steven Moffat to answer questions about their time on the programme.

The panel was hosted by Gary Russell, and the event was attended by many other luminaries from the Doctor Who world, including some of the Restoration Team, who were greeted with much applause.

There is no news as to when the episodes will be released on DVD, although the BBC has said it is considering releasing them on iTunes.
With thanks to Greg James

FILTER: - Steven Moffat - William Hartnell - Classic Series - Patrick Troughton

DVD Update: The KrotonsBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 2 May 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The British Board of Film Classification have passed the special features that will appear on the forthcoming DVD release of the final complete Patrick Troughton adventure, The Krotons:


The commentary for the episode was cleared by the BBFC on 5th April, and includes cast members Philip Madoc (Eelek), Gilbert Wynne (Thara), Richard Ireson (Axus), with production represented by Bobi Bartlett (costumes), Sylvia James (make-up), David Tilley (assisant floor manager), and Brian Hodgson (special sound), plus moderation by Toby Hadoke - you can also read about commentary production in an interview with Hadoke and producer John Kelly via SFX.

A clean version of the cover art by Lee Binding for the DVD has been published via the Tea-Lady Design Facebook page (where the artwork of many of the recent releases can also be viewed).

The DVD is expected to be released in the UK on 9th July and in North America on 10th July.

FILTER: - Classic Series - Blu-ray/DVD - Patrick Troughton

Two Doctor Who episodes recovered!Bookmark and Share

Sunday, 11 December 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster

The BBC revealed today that two complete episodes of Doctor Who have been returned to the BBC Archives.

Firstly, the complete third episode of the William Hartnell story Galaxy 4, Air Lock has been recovered - prior to this only a short segment from the first episode remained in the archive with no telesnaps taken to show how the third episode and its characters would have looked.

Clip from Air Lock, via the BBC Doctor Who site (may not play outside United Kingdom)

Secondly, the complete second episode of Patrick Troughton's third story The Underwater Menace has also been recovered - making this the earliest complete episode for the Second Doctor to now exist in the Archives (alongside the existing episode three).

Clip from The Underwater Menace episode 2, via the BBC Doctor Who site (may not play outside United Kingdom)

Both episodes were found via former TVS engineer Terry Burnett, who bought them at a school fête in Marchwood, Southampton back in the 1980s! Restoration Team member Ralph Montagu told the Radio Times how they came to his attention:
I occasionally meet up with a group of film collectors and retired TV engineers at a café in Hampshire. A few months ago I spoke to Terry Burnett, who used to be an engineer at TVS [the former ITV franchise based in Southampton]. Somehow Doctor Who was mentioned in passing, and Terry said, ‘Oh, actually I think I’ve got an old episode. I thought it was bound to be something we’ve got already,” says Ralph. “I tried not to get too excited, but he came back the next day and brought this spool with him. It had no label, so I had a look at the film leader and it said ‘Air Lock’. I thought, ‘What’s that?’ I checked online and saw that Air Lock was an episode of Galaxy 4 - a missing Hartnell serial. So then I got very excited.

(meeting with Terry a couple of weeks later) And he said, ‘Guess what I’ve got.’ It was another episode of Doctor Who! Again not labelled on the can, but it turned out to be The Underwater Menace part two.”

Read the full article at the Radio Times website.

Both episodes were shown this afternoon at the British Film Institute's Missing Believed Wiped event - the first time they've been seen in the United Kingdom since their original transmission! (Air Lock was originally seen on 25th September 1965, with The Underwater Menace episode two on 21st January 1967) Screen shots from the episodes may be seen in the BBC's Doctor Who Adventure Calendar Day 11.

News report from the BFI by Ed Stradling, via YouTube

The episodes will require restoration work before they can be commercially released, with film damage to be repaired and missing censored clips to be re-instated. An announcement will be made by 2|Entertain next year as to when they are likely to appear on DVD. Meanwhile, the previous existing material for both stories can be found on the Lost in Time DVD boxed set.

These are the first full episodes to have been recovered since the 1965 Daleks' Master Plan episode Day of Armageddon turned up back in 2004, and brings the total missing episodes tally to 106.

Time to search those attics for more episodes!

FILTER: - Special Events - William Hartnell - Classic Series - Patrick Troughton

Patrick Troughton biographyBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 9 February 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Hirst Publishing have provided details on their forthcoming publication of a biography on the actor Patrick Troughton, who played the Second Doctor. The book has been written by his son, Michael Troughton.

Book Cover

Author Michael Troughton
A long overdue biography of the second Doctor Patrick Troughton is in preparation. The actor’s son Michael is writing the book, due for release in November.

Publisher Tim Hirst says “Michael’s research is comprehensive and meticulous and his enthusiasm for the project is contagious! This book will be a real treat for Doctor Who fans.” Patrick Troughton had many film and TV roles, before and after his three years as the Doctor, and was also a Commander in the Royal Navy during the Second World War.

Michael Troughton, known to UK TV viewers as Piers Fletcher Dervish in the classic Rik Mayall comedy The New Statesman, contributed two fondly remembered articles to DWM some years back, in which he discussed growing up with Patrick.

The book will be in hard-back, and is available for pre-order from Hirst Publishing's website.

FILTER: - Merchandise - Books - Patrick Troughton

DVD News - Seeds of Death RevisitedBookmark and Share

Monday, 25 October 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who: Seeds of Death2|entertain have confirmed that the third story in the Revisitations 2 Box Set will be the Second Doctor Story The Seeds of Death.

DVD commissioning editor Dan Hall gave the news in an interview with Radio Free Skaro. The Seeds of Death stars Frazer Hines as Jamie McCrimmon and Wendy Padbury as Zoe Heriot alongside Patrick Troughton as the Doctor. It was first released on DVD in February 2003.

The story joins The Carnival of Monsters with Jon Pertwee and Resurrection of the Daleks with Peter Davison, on the box set expected to be released mid 2011.

Hall confirmed that The Resurrection of the Daleks will contain a documentary fronted by Tenth Doctor David Tennant (mentioned here). He said the story will be released in both the four episode and two episode edition.

He confirmed that the missing Tom Baker Story Shada is in production and at present the plan is to release it with another title.

In the wide ranging interview Hall also talked about his plans for the range and his hopes and desires for the remaining classic stories which still have to be released.

FILTER: - Classic Series - Blu-ray/DVD - Patrick Troughton

News RoundupBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 14 September 2010 - Reported by Marcus
A long lost ITV play starring Second Doctor Patrick Troughton has been found stored at the Library of Congress in Washington. Freedom in September was originally shown as part of the Play of the Week strand in September 1962. Troughton plays Prince, a journalist who helps a Russian dissident. The play is one of a number of missing plays found in part of the archive of the New York-based public service television station WNET.

John Barrowman wowed a crowd of thousands at Salford's Proms in the Park on Saturday. The actor, who plays Captain Jack in Doctor Who and Torchwood, performed numbers from The Pink Panther and Mack and Mabel as well as Don't Rain On My Parade and I Am What I Am. Barrowman said: “I've had a wonderful time. I think it's a really great opportunity for people to come and hear a variety of different types of music - from the classical Proms music to my kind of entertainment. It's what the BBC do so well bringing different types of music all across the country."

Colin Baker's tour as Inspector Morse arrives at the New Theatre Oxford this week and Baker has been talking to the Reading Post. He told the paper that he’s also a big fan of the new series especially Matt Smith. "I’m very pleased with the new one, I think he’s brilliant", he says.

Meanwhile filming continues in Cardiff on the 2011 series of Doctor Who with Director Richard Clark tweeting "I'm scared filming this. The kids are gonna freak", and "Big finale today. Complex. Lots to co-ordinate. But it's looking seriously gorgeous."

FILTER: - People - Series 6/32 - Patrick Troughton - Colin Baker

The Dominators Confirmed for DVDBookmark and Share

Thursday, 22 April 2010 - Reported by Marcus
The DominatorsThe BBFC have cleared extras for the DVD release of the Second Doctor story The Dominators.

This 1968 five-part story has been expected ever since an official promo for the story was leaked to YouTube at the end of last year. The story stars Patrick Troughton as the Doctor along with Frazer Hines as Jamie and Wendy Padbury as Zoe.

The story is set on the planet Dulkis, under threat from two alien Dominators, Rago and his subordinate Toba, who have landed in a spaceship. It features the robot Quarks.

Guest stars include Ronald Allen, who was well known at the time for his starring role in the soap opera Compact and later for his role in Crossroads and Brian Cant who was a staple of Children's television in the sixties and seventies, well known for his work on Play School and Play Away and for his narration on the popular Trumpton, Chigley and Camberwick Green puppet series.

Extras Cleared:
  • Commentary
  • Recharge and Equalise - Featurette - 22'55"
  • Easter Egg - 2'34"
  • The Dominators - Photo Gallery - 5'46"
  • Tomorrow's Times - How the media reported on the Second Doctor - 13'12"
No release date for the story has been confirmed but it is likely to be released in July or August.

FILTER: - Classic Series - Blu-ray/DVD - Patrick Troughton

Troughton's Grandson Does BattleBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 13 May 2003 - Reported by Shaun Lyon
Dr Who's grandson ready to exterminate opposition is the headline for an article that appeared in the May 12Daily Telegraph online, focusing on Jim Troughton, cricket player and grandson of the late second Doctor, Patrick Troughton. Says the article: "When your grandfather has defeated the Daleks and scattered the Cybermen, the prospect of engaging battle with Australian cricketers is unlikely to send you cowering behind the sofa in terror. They may be a dastardly enemy but by the time the next Ashes series comes round, there is every chance England's hopes of victory against the fearsome forces from Down Under may be boosted by a new weapon in the shape of Jim Troughton's trusty willow." Read the rest of it by clicking here.

FILTER: - Patrick Troughton