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 5 - An Unearthly Series - The Origins of a TV Legend: First published 23 Nov 2012

Celestial Toyroom Annual 2022Bookmark and Share

Sunday, 27 February 2022 - Reported by Marcus
Celestial Toyroom Annual 2022. (Credit: DWAS)

The Doctor Who Appreciation Society, DWAS, has released a limited-run hardback version of their 2022 annual Celestial Toyroom.

 

The hardback book, initially available as a download is A5, runs to over 140 A5 colour pages and contains items covering every story of the 11th Doctor TV era. 

 

Profits from the sale go towards Save the Children and Cancer Research UK.

 

The book is £25 including (UK) delivery with a discount available for DWAS members and can be ordered from the society website.





FILTER: - DWAS - Charity

Henry Lincoln 1930-2022Bookmark and Share

Friday, 25 February 2022 - Reported by Marcus
Henry Lincoln

The writer Henry Lincoln has died at the age of 91.

Henry Lincoln was the last surviving writer to have worked on Doctor Who in the 1960s. He wrote three Doctor Who stories, co-creating The Yeti and the character Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart. 

He was a best-selling author writing The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, the book which later inspired Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code.

Henry Lincoln was born Henry Soskin in London in 1930. He studied acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. As an actor, he was a regular on television from the mid-1950s appearing in programmes such as  Our Mutual Friend, Spy-Catcher, Strange Concealments, The Avengers, The Barnstormers, The Saint, Z-Cars, and Man in a Suitcase. 

He started writing in the 1960s writing an episode of The Barnstormers as well as starring in two episodes. 

In the 1960s he formed a writing partnership with Mervyn Haisman and together they were commissioned to write a six-part story for the second Doctor. The result was The Abominable Snowmen which saw the Doctor, Jamie and Victoria battle The Great Intelligence and their robot servants The Yeti. The story was so successful the team was immediately commissioned to write a sequel, this time bringing the Yeti into the claustrophobic world of the London Underground in The Web of Fear.

The story introduced a new character in the form of Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart played by Nicholas Courtney. Not only was the story highly regarded but the new character caught the imagination of the producers and would return the following year, albeit with a promotion, and become a regular throughout the Pertwee years. 

Henry Lincoln and Mervyn Haisman's third outing with the Doctor was not so successful. Their six-part story, The Dominators would cause a permanent rift with the BBC following an argument over who owned the characters The Quarks. The story was rewritten and reduced to five episodes resulting in the writers asking for their names to be removed from the credits. The story was transmitted under the pseudonym Norman Ashby

In 1969 Lincoln was traveling in France when he became intrigued by the local story of a great treasure being hidden in the region. His research lead to a series of documentaries for the BBC and a book The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail which became a bestseller in 1982, co-written with Richard Leigh and Michael Baigent. 

Some of the ideas put forward in the book were later used by the author Dan Brown in his bestseller The Da Vinci Code. A High Court case against Brown, taken by his co-writers, failed. 

Lincoln returned to the subject of ancient hidden treasure in a series called The Secret, which screened in 1993.

In 2003, Lincoln was awarded an Honorary Knighthood in the Militi Templi Scotia order, in recognition of his work in the fields of sacred geometry and Templar history. 

 

 

 

 

 





FILTER: - Obituary

Stewart Bevan 1948-2022Bookmark and Share

Monday, 21 February 2022 - Reported by Marcus
Stewart Bevan (Credit: Katy Manning)

The actor Stewart Bevan has died at the age of 73.

Stewart Bevan appeared in the 1973 Doctor Who story The Green Death, playing Professor Clifford Jones

Jones was the leader of the Nuthatch community who ended the story by marrying Jo Grant, played by his then-girlfriend Katy Manning. 

Bevan was in London to Welsh parents. His love of amateur dramatics led him to seek a career in the theatre and he trained at the Corona Theatre School. 

One of his first roles was in the film To Sir With Love starring Sidney Poitier. Other film credits include Lock Up Your Daughters!,  Burke & Hare, The Flesh and Blood Show, and Steptoe and Son Ride Again.

His television career was extensive, appearing in shows such as Emmerdale Farm, where he played Ray Oswell, Shoestring, Blakes 7, The Onedin Line, Ivanhoe, Nanny, Casualty, Grange Hill,  The House of Eliott, and Brookside

His former co-star, close friend, and ex-partner Katy Manning posted this tribute on twitter 

The most beautiful man poet actor screenwriter husband ❤️& father to @CoralBevan ❤️@Misswendybevan ❤️went on his awfully big adventure. He was the love in my life for many years on & off-screen & our wonderful friendship continued to the end 

 





FILTER: - Obituary

The Pirate Planet to be released on vinylBookmark and Share

Thursday, 17 February 2022 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Demon Records - The Pirate Planet (vinyl)

Demon Records are to release the latest in their Vinyl Who collection of Doctor Who TV soundtracks on 18th March 2022, Season 16 adventure The Pirate Planet:

"The life force is dead! We’re all murderers!"

Demon Records presents the debut Doctor Who adventure by Douglas Adams - creator of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - starring Tom Baker as the Doctor.

On the hunt for the Key to Time, the Doctor, Romana and K9 materialise on the planet Calufrax –or do they? Entangled in local events, they are caught between the bombastic Captain – half-man,half-machine – and the sinister Mentiads. Someone is ransacking whole planets for their wealth,and just as the Doctor discovers who’s behind it another one comes under threat: Earth!

Presented across 2 x 140g Sky Demon Splatter vinyl discs, this 1978 TV soundtrack is narrated by John Leeson, the original Voice of K9. The supporting cast includes Mary Tamm as Romana with Bruce Purchase, Andrew Robertson, David Warwick and Rosalind Lloyd. Incidental music is composed by Dudley Simpson, and the familiar strains of the Doctor Who theme are courtesy ofthe BBC Radiophonic Workshop.

The coloured vinyl LPs are presented in a fully illustrated gatefold sleeve showing cast and credits, and inner bags featuring complete episode billings.

 

 

Demon Records - The Pirate Planet (vinyl) Demon Records - The Pirate Planet (vinyl)

 





FILTER: - Merchandise - Soundtracks - Fourth Doctor - Vinyl

Black Archive #57 - Vincent and the DoctorBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 16 February 2022 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Black Archive #57 - Vincent and the Doctor

The latest release in the Black Archive series looks at the eleventh Doctor story Vincent and the Doctor.

Pain is easy to portray, but to use your passion and pain to portray the ecstasy and joy and magnificence of our world. No one had ever done it before. Perhaps no one ever will again.”

 

In Vincent and the Doctor, acclaimed British screenwriter Richard Curtis sets out to right a wrong. How could it be that an artist so loved and whose paintings now sell for millions, could be so unappreciated in his lifetime? Is it right that he died not knowing how much his work has added to the pile of good things in the world?

Cue the Doctor, Amy and the TARDIS. Surely they can fix this injustice? But can time travel also be used to cure depression? One invisible monster is defeated, but when it comes to handling the troubled artist the Doctor finds himself completely out of his depth.

This Black Archive considers how the voices of the writers, the artist, the monster and the paintings combine and clash to create a living work of art in itself… one that cannot be contained within its many frames.

 

Paul Driscoll is a member of the Black Archive editorial team and has written two previous entries in the range, on The God Complex and the 1996 television movie, as well as a book on Stranger Things. He is also co-owner of Altrix Books.

Vincent and the Doctor is available in both paperback and digitsl formats, and can be purchased directly from Obverse Books and other retailers.





FILTER: - Books - Black Archive

Lethbridge-Stewart: Blue BloodBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 15 February 2022 - Reported by Chuck Foster

Candy Jar Books ihas announced the final book in its penultimate series of Lethbridge-Stewart novels:

Lethbridge-Stewart: Blue Blood (Credit: Candy Jar Books)

Blue Blood

Written by Chris Thomas

Cover art by Paul Cooke

 

 

People go missing every day. It’s an unfortunate part of life, and tragic for the families involved. But when bodies of the missing start turning up, as if ripped apart by wild animals, the Fifth Operational Corps is called in to investigate. 

Sergeant Major Samson Ware and Captain Bill Bishop head to Newcastle, after a spike in the missing persons’ reports, and form an alliance with young photographer Gary Merrin in an effort to uncover the truth.  

Meanwhile, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart and Anne Travers try to find the recently returned Professor Ted Travers, who himself seems to have disappeared. Their investigations lead them to a World War II veteran, who is a shadow of his former self. 

How are the disappearances linked to an experiment from the past? And just what is the connection with the missing Professor Travers? 

 

 

Blue Blood is the first Lethbridge-Stewart novel by Chris Thomas, who previously wrote Vampires of the Night for The HAVOC Files 2: Special Edition.  Born in Perth, Western Australia, Chris is a writer, actor, journalist and broadcaster. His writing includes the novel Journo's Diary for defunct publisher Metropolis Ink, the Doctor Who short story One Step Forward, Two Steps Back (published in Short Trips: Defining Patterns), the plays Which One?Reality Matters, and Appetite for Destruction

Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen said:

I enjoyed Chris’ short story at the time, and was amused to find he originally ended it in the ‘present’, setting up a sequel. A common thing among new authors – trying to set up some future work for themselves. I remember removing that end scene and telling Chris that if we’re gonna do a sequel, let’s do one properly instead of simply setting it up. Also, by removing the set-up in the short story, we leave things open for new ideas to develop in the meantime.

Chris said:

After Candy Jar Books released my short story in late 2019, Andy got in touch when he was mapping out the latest Lethbridge-Stewart series and asked if I would like to submit a pitch for one of the stories. Vampires of the Night featured Professor Travers and was set during World War II, and I originally had a short scene thirty-odd years later with Lethbridge-Stewart and Anne, discovering something that hadn’t been quite resolved at the end of the story. The scene got cut but, about six hours after I got the initial email from Andy about the novel pitch, I think we had both reached the same conclusion – he followed up, asking if I wanted to do the sequel I had previously hinted at.

 

As the final book in the penultimate series, this book serves a bit as a preamble to the final days of the Fifth Operational Corps. Chris continued:

Given the United Nations is a global organisation, I wanted to create a problem that had its focus in the UK but was also happening around the world. Being an Aussie, I did throw in a couple of things from Down Under, but the core of the story is set in England’s north, so the focus remains on the Lethbridge-Stewart characters with sojourns to other countries to show similar things happening elsewhere.

 

Andy added:

It’s all about laying the foundations for the end of the series, as the band finally starts to break up (in a very dramatic sense), which the final series will build upon as things on the international stage start to become even more precarious. But Blue Blood does much more than that; it tells an exciting story, a bit of a mystery, introducing some fun new characters to the LSverse and, eagle-eyed observers will notice, a nice link back to a popular Doctor Who story from 1989.”


The cover is by postman and popular part-time artist Paul Cooke, back for his fourth Lethbridge-Stewart novel cover:

When I got the brief, I decided to produce an atmospheric piece, but one that was still vibrant and colourful. I went for bright sidelights and a sunset rather than night sky, and pushing the colour on the radio telescope in a non-realist but striking way (I hope!).

It was really important to me to get Samson right on this cover. I really like his character and I wanted to create a good portrait. One of the things Candy Jar have been really successful with is introducing strong (I hate this term) minority characters but treating them in a realistic period-way without denigrating them or making them in any way ‘token’. I hope I’ve done Samson justice.

It was fun creating the other characters, too. The female character had to be fairly scary without being too gory and not falling into the titillation trap with the tears in the dress. Merrin had to look alarmed without becoming a caricature, so I hope I struck the right balance. An enjoyable commission and I’m really looking forward to the book.

 

The book is available to pre-order from Candy Jar Books, and is part of the Season 8 six book bundle for subcribers.

 

The final series of Lethbridge-Stewart will be split in two parts over 2022, beginning with three novels; Spheres of Influence by Violet Addison & David N Smith, The Most Haunted Man by Sarah Groenewegen, and Legacy of the Dominator by Nick Walters.





FILTER: - Candy Jar Books - Books - Lethbridge-Stewart

Classic Doctor Who back on the airwavesBookmark and Share

Monday, 14 February 2022 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Forces TV (Credit: Forces Net)

20th Century Doctor Who returns to free-to-air television this week as Forces TV features a selection of colour adventures for the Doctor.

The series kicks off this Tuesday with Spearhead From Space , following a daily pattern of 7:55am, 1:25pm and 8:15pm, and then a weekend catchup from 11:25am. Next up will be The Dæmons and then Genesis of the Daleks; other stories in the run include City of Death, Kinda, Vengeance on Varos and Remembrance of the Daleks.

Forces TV is available to watch in the UK over the air on Freeview 96 and Freesat 165, and via digital broadcasters Virgin 274 and Sky 181.





FILTER: -

Doctor Who Magazine: Issue 574Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, 2 February 2022 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who Magazine Issue 574 (Credit: Panini)

In this month's Doctor Who Magazine, Colin Baker, Bonnie Langford and Russell T Davies reveal the next chapter for the sixth Doctor

Highlights of the new issue include:

  • An exclusive preview of Mind of the Hodiac (Russell T Davies’ first Doctor Who script) ahead of its Big Finish release, with contributions from Colin Baker, Bonnie Langford, Russell, Scott Handcock and Emily Cook.

  • The first installment of a two-part interview with Doctor Who’s outgoing executive producer Matt Strevens.

  • Visual effects designer Ben Pickles describes his contributions to the Thirteenth Doctor’s era.

  • Zodiak VFX’s Tamsie Thomas and Myfanwy Harris talk about their award-winning work on Doctor Who.

  • A tribute to Doctor Who director Michael Ferguson, who passed away in October.

  • The inside story of how the BBC paved the way for Doctor Who’s long-awaited return in 2005.

  • Pianist Jess Jurkovic discusses his YouTube project ‘Dudley Simpson IS Doctor Who’.

  • Collectivity investigates the increasingly sophisticated world of trading cards.

  • Apocrypha revisits Invasion of the Daleks, a seminal comic strip from 1964’s The Dalek Book.

  • The Fact of Fiction looks at the 1965 story The Romans.

  • Public Image analyses the ratings for Eve of the Daleks.

  • The first part of Hydra’s Gate, a new comic-strip story for the Doctor, Yaz and Dan.

  • Previews, reviews, news, prize-winning competitions, Time and Space Visualiser, Sufficient Data and more.

Doctor Who Magazine Issue 574 is on sale from panini.co.uk and WH Smith from Thursday 3 February priced £6.99 (UK). Also available as a digital edition from pocketmags.com priced £4.99.

 




FILTER: - DWM - Sixth Doctor