Category Archives: Season 5

Enemy of the World Region 4 DVD Release 27 November

Standard

ImageThe recently recovered missing serial The Enemy of the World is set for DVD release in Australia and New Zealand on 27 November 2013. Although both The Enemy of the World and The Web of Fear were released on iTunes Australia on 11 October, neither of the serials are available on iTunes in New Zealand.  Like Australia, New Zealand has purchased and aired Doctor Who since the very first story, An Unearthly Child, almost 50 years ago.  The BBC’s snub of New Zealand fans is deplorable. As The Web of Fear is not due for DVD release until sometime in the new year, New Zealanders still have a long wait to see the Brigadier’s debut. 

Details on what, if any, special features are included in The Enemy of the World have yet to be released.  The latest issue of the Doctor Who Magazine states that “Enemy is due to be released on DVD in November, along with special features yet to be confirmed”. The British Board of Film Classification appears not to have approved any special features to date. A basic release without special features has become known in fandom as a “vanilla” release.

The current edition of the Doctor Who Magazine with The Enemy of the World Cover.  This edition of DWM is also available with a special edition cover featuring The Web of Fear

The current edition of the Doctor Who Magazine with The Enemy of the World cover. This edition of DWM is also available with a special edition cover featuring The Web of Fear

Enemy is currently available for pre-order at both the BBC Doctor Who online store and the ABC Shop for $19.95.  As both retailers ordinarily sell new release Doctor Who classic series DVDs for $29.95 one wonders if the discounted price reflects a “vanilla” release. Alternatively, the reduced price may be based upon the assumption that purchasers have previously bought the release for $14.99 on iTunes.  Only time will tell!

A Radio Times produced retro poster for The Enemy of the World

A Radio Times produced retro poster for The Enemy of the World

Vivien Fleming

©Vivien Fleming, 2013.

Day 41 of 50th Anniversary Countdown – 7 Companions That Could or Should Have Been (The Sixties)

Standard

Image

On Day 41 of our 50th Anniversary Countdown The Doctor Who Mind Robber examines some 1960’s companions that could or should have been. The would-be companions are listed in broadcast order only.

1.       Bret Vyon – The Daleks’ Master Plan

There are some fans who may posit that Bret Vyon, the Space Security Agent from The Daleks’ Master Plan, has already been accorded companion status.  This is somewhat of a minority view, however. Nicholas Courtney’s first Doctor Who role saw his character travel through time and space with the Doctor and his companions but he was somewhat of an interloper. His first meeting with the Doctor involved a threat of violence and he forced his way into the TARDIS uninvited. It took some time for a degree of trust to be established between the parties.

In any event Vyon was killed at the hands of his own sister, Sara Kingdom. Thank goodness he was or we would never have had the iconic Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.  Well at least not the Brigadier as played by Nicholas Courtney.

Nicholas Courtney played Bret Vyon in The Daleks Master Plan

Nicholas Courtney played Bret Vyon in The Daleks’ Master Plan

 2.       Anne Chaplet – The Massacre

Anne Chaplet was a French servant girl who the Doctor and Steven met in Paris during The Massacre. At the time Steven was the First Doctor’s sole companion, with this serial being the only one in the monochrome era of Doctor Who to feature just a single travelling companion. Vicki had left in the final episode of The Myth Makers and had been replaced by Katarina for episodes one to four of The Daleks’ Master Plan. Sara Kingdom then accompanied the Doctor and Steven until her death in episode 12 of that serial.  Proceeding directly on from the DMP, The Massacre is one of a long series of sadly missing episodes.

Anne Chaplet - the Huguenot servant girl that the Doctor refused to save in The Massacre

Anne Chaplet – the Huguenot servant girl that the Doctor refused to save in The Massacre

As the Doctor disappeared for the majority of episodes of The Massacre, only to be replaced by his evil double Abbot Amboise, Anne had very little contact with him.  Anne’s relationship with Steven, however, was strong and they immediately clicked. He was understandably devastated and angry when the Doctor refused to allow Anne to accompany them in the TARDIS when they left Paris in episode four.

STEVEN: Surely there was something we could have done?

DOCTOR: No, nothing.  Nothing.  In any case, I cannot change the course of history, you know that.  The massacre continued for several days in Paris and then spread itself to other parts of France.  Oh, what a senseless waste.  What a terrible page of the past.

STEVEN: Did they all die?

DOCTOR: Yes, most of them.  About ten thousand in Paris alone.

STEVEN: The Admiral?

DOCTOR: Yes.

STEVEN: Nicholas? You had to leave Anne Chaplet there to die.

DOCTOR: Anne Chaplet?

STEVEN: The girl!  The girl who was with me!  If you’d brought her with us she needn’t have died.  But no, you had to leave her there to be slaughtered.

DOCTOR: Well, it is possible of course she didn’t die, and I was right to leave her.

STEVEN: Possible?  Look, how possible?  That girl was already hunted by the Catholic guards.  If they killed ten thousand how did they spare her?  You don’t know do you” You can’t say for certain that you weren’t responsible for that’s girl’s death.

DOCTOR: I was not responsible.

STEVEN: Oh, no.  You just sent her back to her aunt’s house where the guards were waiting to catch her.  I tell you this much, Doctor, wherever this machine of yours lands next I’ m getting off.  If you have so little regard for human life then I want no part of it.

DOCTOR: We’ve landed.  Your mind is made up?

STEVEN: Goodbye.

Steven, Anne and Huguenots in The Massacre

Steven, Anne and Huguenots in The Massacre

No sooner had Steven left the ship than Dodo Chaplet mysteriously entered and Steven returned. Upon learning Dodo’s surname Steven was intrigued.  Could she perhaps be a descendant of Anne’s?  Logically, however, with would have been highly unlikely in a patriarchal society in which women were routinely given their father’s surnames.

3.       Samantha Briggs – The Faceless Ones

Pauline Collins’ first appearance in Doctor Who was in the 1967 serial The Faceless Ones as the Liverpudlian Samantha Briggs. Investigating the disappearance of her brother on a Chameleon Tours flight to Rome, Sam met up with The Doctor and his companions. Although born in Liverpool, Collins’ Liverpudlian accent in the story has been the cause of much mirth over the years. A possible romantic match for Jamie, the relationship between the two characters never progressed beyond a kiss.

As Polly and Ben were leaving Doctor Who at the end of The Faceless Ones Collins was offered the job as a full-time companion.  Perhaps wisely, given the lack of success of many companions post Who, Collins declined and went on to obtain an OBE, win a BAFTA for Best Film Actress, and be nominated for both an Academy Award and a Golden Globe.  She is best known for her role in the movie Shirley Valentine.  In 2006 Collins appeared in the Doctor Who episode Tooth and Claw as Queen Victoria.

Jamie gets a kiss from Samantha in The Faceless Ones

Jamie gets a kiss from Samantha in The Faceless Ones

 4.       Thonmi – The Abominable Snowmen

A young monk at the Det-Sen Monastery during the Doctor and his companions’ jaunt to Tibet in 1935 (The Abominable Snowmen), Thonmi would have been an intriguing companion.  Having quickly established a rapport with Victoria, this young man could have brought an element of spirituality to the Second Doctor’s tenure. I couldn’t help but wonder what Thonmi’s reaction would have been to the Doctor’s trance like communication with the Time Lords in The War Games. Although the producers of Doctor Who experienced difficulties with Katarina during her mere 4 episode companionship, the subsequent success of both Jamie and Victoria as historical companions showed that the juxtaposition of time could work very well.

The Doctor and the young monk, Thonmi in The Abominable Snowmen

The Doctor and the young monk, Thonmi in The Abominable Snowmen

5.   Astrid – The Enemy of the World

Sassy, sexy and a product of James Bond obsessed 1960’s Britain, Astrid would have made a perfect companion for the Doctor. Capable and organized, Astrid had the capacity to provide a strong female lead character to Doctor Who. At the time that Mary Peach filmed her role in The Enemy of the World she was also auditioning for Diana Rigg’s replacement in The Avengers. Although unsuccessful in obtaining The Avengers’ role, you could readily see her playing another Mrs Emma Peel.  How wonderful that the recovery and release of The Enemy of the World has allowed us to see another five episodes of Ms Peach’s work!

Mary Peach as Astrid in The Enemy of the World

Mary Peach as Astrid in The Enemy of the World

6. Anne Travers – The Web of Fear

Anne Travers was another product of the Second Wave of Feminism.  Intelligent and university educated, Anne was the daughter of Professor Travers whom the Doctor first met in Tibet during The Abominable Snowmen tale. So successful was Ms Traver’s career in science that she was working in the United States when called upon to provide assistance to her father.

Anne Travers gif1

Ms Traver’s was a scientific equal to the Doctor and ably worked alongside him during the 20 minute countdown thrust upon them by the Great Intelligence in The Web of Fear.  Like Isobel, she brilliantly turned the tables on any male who sought to denigrate her. Her comeback to Knight in Episode 1 was just brilliant:

KNIGHT: What’s a girl like you doing in a job like this?

ANNE: Well, when I was a little girl I thought I’d like to be a scientist, so I became a scientist.

KNIGHT: Just like that?

ANNE: Just like that.

Anne Travers another try

That Isobel and Anne shared a feminist outlook is not surprising given that Isobel was originally intended to be the reprisal of Anne in The Invasion. Circumstances meant that neither Professor Travers nor his daughter was reprised in The Invasion but in their places were substituted Professor Watkins and his niece Isobel. The Travers were nonetheless mentioned in The Invasion.

 Anne Travers gif37.       Isobel – The Invasion

I waxed lyrical about Isobel in my review of The Invasion notwithstanding Rob Shearman’s rather scathing critique of her in Running Through Corridors. A forthright young woman, not dissimilar to the former companion Polly, Isobel was intelligent, capable and a great friend to Zoe. The girls’ glee at Zoe blowing up the International Electromatics automated answering machine was infectious.  Just imagine the other hijinks they could have got up to. Isobel represented the growing second wave of feminism and did not retreat from her criticisms of patriarchy.  She successfully imparted a glint of this onto Zoe. 

Isobel and Zoe in The Invasion

Isobel and Zoe in The Invasion

Vivien Fleming

©Vivien Fleming, 2013.

Day 43 of 50th Anniversary Countdown – The 10 Best Second Doctor Quotes

Standard

Image

10. The Power of the Daleks

             The Doctor: Life depends on change, and renewal.

Ben: Oh, that’s it, you’ve been renewed, have you?

The Doctor: Renewed? Have I? That’s it, I’ve been renewed. It’s part of the TARDIS. Without it I couldn’t survive.

 

The Doctor, Ben and Polly in the Second Doctor's first adventure, The Power of the Daleks

The Doctor, Ben and Polly in the Second Doctor’s first adventure, The Power of the Daleks

9.  The Invasion

I hate computers and refuse to be bullied by them!

The Doctor could not abide being bullied by either Tobias Vaughn or computers in The Invasion

The Doctor could not abide being bullied by either Tobias Vaughn or computers in The Invasion

8.  The Tomb of the Cybermen

The Doctor:  You look very nice in that dress, Victoria

Victoria: Thank you.  Don’t you think it’s a bit …

The Doctor: A bit short? Oh, I shouldn’t worry about that.  Look at Jamie’s.

Victoria's dress was shorter than Jamie's kilt in The Tomb of the Cybermen

Victoria’s dress was shorter than Jamie’s kilt in The Tomb of the Cybermen

7.  The Seeds of Death

Your leader will be angry if you kill me.  I … I’m a genius!

The Doctor used his genius in an attempt to thwart death in The Seeds of Death

The Doctor used his genius in an attempt to thwart death in The Seeds of Death

6.   The Enemy of the World

People spend all their time making nice things and then other people come along and break them!

 

5.  The War Games

The Time Lords are an immensely civilised race.  We  can control our own environment – we can live forever, barring accidents, and we have the secret of space/time travel.

It was not until the Second Doctor's final story that we learnt that he was a Time Lord

It was not until the Second Doctor’s final story that we learnt that he was a Time Lord

4.  The Enemy of the World

Victoria: Perhaps we’ve landed in a world of mad men.

Doctor: They’re human beings, if that’s what you mean. Indulging their favourite past time – trying to destroy each other. Time we went, come on.

The Doctor gave Victoria a lesson on human nature in The Enemy of the World

The Doctor gave Victoria a lesson on human nature in The Enemy of the World

3.   The Moonbase

There are some corners of the universe which have bred the most terrible things.  Things which act against everything we believe in.  They must be fought!

Second Doctor Quotes - Some Things

2.     The Tomb of the Cybermen

Victoria: You probably can’t remember your family.

The Doctor: Oh yes, I can when I want to. And that’s the point, really. I have to really want to, to bring them back in front of my eyes. The rest of the time they… they sleep in my mind and I forget. And so will you. Oh yes, you will. You’ll find there’s so much else to think about. To remember. Our lives are different to anybody else’s. That’s the exciting thing, that nobody in the universe can do what we’re doing.

The Doctor had a tender conversation with Victoria about his family in The Tomb of the Cybermen

The Doctor had a tender conversation with Victoria about his family in The Tomb of the Cybermen

 

1 .  The Wheel in Space

Logic, my dear Zoe, merely enables one to be wrong with authority.

Vivien Fleming

©Vivien Fleming, 2013.

Day 44 of 50th Anniversary Countdown – 5 Reasons to Celebrate the Return of Enemy and Web

Standard

Image

With the momentous missing episodes recovery news of last week The Doctor Who Mind Robber can now celebrate the return of nine episodes.  The six part The Enemy of the World is now complete with the recovery of episodes 1, 2, 4, 5 and 6.  Episode 3 was already in the care of the BBC and was released on the triple DVD set Lost in Time. The Web of Fear, also six episodes long, is now only missing episode 3. Episode 1 had previously been released on Lost in Time and episodes 2, 4, 5 and 6 have been recovered.  

In no particular order we now reflect on 5 Reasons to Celebrate the Return of Enemy and Web.

Professor Travis is confronted by Yeti in The Web of Fear

Professor Travis is confronted by Yeti in The Web of Fear

5.  THERE ARE NOW ONLY 97 MISSING EPISODES

Since the recovery of Airlock (episode three of Galaxy 4) and episode two of The Underwater Menace there have been 106 missing Doctor Who episodes.  The return of the aforementioned episodes in December 2011 were the first recoveries since episode two of The Daleks’ Master Plan (Day of Armageddon) in January 2004. With only three episodes returned in the 21st Century prior to 2013, the haul of nine recently recovered episodes brings to a dozen the episodes found this century.

For the first time the number of missing episodes is in double figures.  How long will it be until there are less than 97 missing episodes?

Doctor Who retro posters courtesy of Radio Times designer Stuart Manning - http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2013-10-11/doctor-who-missing-episodes-retro-poster-designs

Doctor Who retro posters courtesy of Radio Times designer Stuart Manning – http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2013-10-11/doctor-who-missing-episodes-retro-poster-designs

4.  COLONEL LETHBRIDGE-STEWART IS INTRODUCED

Although Nicholas Courtney appeared as Bret Vyon in The Daleks’ Master Plan, it is in The Web of Fear that his iconic character of Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart made its Doctor Who debut. The Doctor Who Mind Robber has waxed lyrical about the promoted Brigadier here and here.  Unfortunately, however, it is the very episode in which Lethbridge- Stewart appears for the first time that is missing from The Web of Fear.  Episode three is yet to be recovered however it has been very ably reconstructed by the BBC and has been released with the serial’s other five episodes on iTunes.

The then-Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart is first introduced to Doctor Who in The Web of Fear

The then-Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart is first introduced to Doctor Who in The Web of Fear

3.   THE ENEMY OF THE WORLD IS THE FIRST COMPLETE SERIAL RECOVERED SINCE 1992

For the first time since the recovery of all four episodes of The Tomb of the Cybermen in 1992 a complete serial, The Enemy of the World, has been returned to the BBC Archives.  Long-term fans still recount stories of the joy experienced when Tomb resurfaced in Hong Kong. There’s little doubt that the recent finds will become part of the mythology of Doctor Who.

The Cybermen emerge from their icy tombs in this iconic image from The Tomb of the Cybermen

The Cybermen emerge from their icy tombs in this iconic image from The Tomb of the Cybermen

2.  THE YETI

The Yeti have obtained mythical status in the world of Doctor Who despite having appeared in only two serials, The Abominable Snowmen and the Web of Fear. Until the recovery of four of Web’s six episodes only one was held in the BBC Archives.  A single episode is all that remains of The Abominable Snowmen.  With a reconstruction of the missing third episode of Web and the release of all six episodes on iTunes, fans can experience one of the greatest monsters in 1960s Doctor Who for the first time in 45 years.  Now Jon Pertwee’s oft quoted phrase “Yeti on the Loo” may begin to make sense to current era Doctor Who fans.

The Yeti invade the London Underground in The Web of Fear

The Yeti invade the London Underground in The Web of Fear

1.  DOCTOR WHO’S FIRST HELICOPTER AND HOVERCRAFT SCENES

Synonymous with the tenure of the Third Doctor, Jon Pertwee, chase scenes were unheard of during the first two incarnations of the Doctor.  Except, of course, for The Enemy of the World. It is in episode one of this story that the first helicopter is seen, together with a hovercraft. A helicopter subsequently made an appearance in the still lost Fury From the Deep, the companion Victoria’s last story.  The Enemy of the World was incidentally the first time that the legendary Barry Letts worked on Doctor Who.  Letts was the producer of Who during the Third Doctor’s tenure.

The first hovercraft to appear in Doctor Who was in The Enemy of the World

The first hovercraft to appear in Doctor Who was in The Enemy of the World

HONOURABLE MENTIONS

MARY PEACH IS ASTRID

Mary Peach as Astrid in The Enemy of the World

Mary Peach as Astrid in The Enemy of the World

SALAMANDER SWEPT INTO THE VORTEX

The Doctor's evil doppelgänger, Salamander. is swept out into the vortex soon after his face-to-face confrontation with the Doctor in The Enemy of the World

The Doctor’s evil doppelgänger, Salamander. is swept out into the vortex soon after his face-to-face confrontation with the Doctor in The Enemy of the World

DEBORAH AND JACK WATLING APPEARING TOGETHER

The father and daughter team of Jack and Deborah Watling first appeared together on screen in The Abominable Snowmen.  Watling Snr reprised his role of Travers in The Web of Fear

The father and daughter team of Jack and Deborah Watling first appeared together on screen in The Abominable Snowmen. Watling Snr reprised his role of Travers in The Web of Fear

TINA PARKER IS ANNE TRAVERS

Tina Parker played the role of Anne Travers, the daughter of Professor Travers in The Web of Fear.  She almost reprised her role in The Invasion

Tina Parker played the role of Anne Travers, the daughter of Professor Travers in The Web of Fear. She almost reprised her role in The Invasion

Vivien Fleming

©Vivien Fleming, 2013.

Missing Episodes Delay 50th Anniversary Countdown

Standard

Image

The Doctor Who Mind Robber regrets to advise that the recent news of the recovery of 9 missing episodes has thwarted our attempts to provide a daily article celebrating the countdown to Doctor Who’s 50th Anniversary. Far too much time has been spent speculating about, celebrating and watching The Enemy of the World and The Web of Fear to write the daily post.  Now that the hysteria is being to subside we will recommence our countdown at Day 44 tomorrow. Hopefully several posts per day will quickly allow us to catch up.  Today is 41 days until the 50th.

Please stay tuned as we continue our countdown to this incredible milestone. In the meantime feel free to read our previous 50th countdown posts.

Day 50 – The 10 Most Wanted Missing Episodes

Day 49 – The 10 Least Remembered Monsters of the Sixties

Day 48 – The Top 10 Cliff Hangers of the Sixties

Day 47 – The 10 Greatest Billy Fluffs

Day 46 – 10 of the Best First Doctor Moments

Day 45 – The 5 Least Wanted Missing Episodes

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Vivien Fleming

Doctor Who Tops iTunes Top TV Chart

Standard

Image

Following the release of the two newly recovered Doctor Who serials on iTunes earlier today, The Enemy of the World is currently charting at number one in the Australian iTunes Top TV Seasons List.  The Web of Fear is holding down the second place in front of three seasons of Breaking Bad. Who’d ever have imagined that 45 year old black and white Doctor Who serials would be the hottest sellers on iTunes!

To give viewers a taste of what to expect from the two serials the BBC has released a trailer for each, together with five other short clips.  Earlier today The Doctor Who Mind Robber posted the trailers and we now provide for your viewing pleasure two of these clips, one each from The Enemy of the World and The Web of Fear. 

The Doctor Goes for a Swim – The Enemy of the World

The Doctor reactivates a Yeti Sphere – The Web of Fear

Vivien Fleming

The Enemy of the World and The Web of Fear Now Available for Download on iTunes Australia

Standard

ImageJust when Australian fans of Doctor Who thought they’d been forgotten, the newly recovered Second Doctor serials The Enemy of the World and The Web of Fear appeared on the iTunes Australia site.  Released at midnight London time (9.00 Qld Time) in the UK and the US, it appeared for several hours that Australian fans would miss out. 

The complete six part serial The Enemy of the World is available to purchase for $14.99, whilst The Web of Fearwhich is missing one episode but has a reconstruction of episode three in lieu, is offered at the same price. iTunes is the only platform that these long missing stories are presently being offered for sale on. Both stories will be released on DVD in due course.

Frazer Hines and Deborah Watling at the private screening and press conference for The Web of Fear and The Enemy of the World yesterday

Frazer Hines (Jamie) and Deborah Watling (Victoria) at the private screening and press conference for The Web of Fear and The Enemy of the World yesterday

Vivien Fleming