Ye Olde Doctor Who Thread.

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Post by Tetsuro » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:08 pm

Have they? The only adaptation I've ever seen was the one that just had the footage they actually shot with Tom narrating the gaps, and I recall there was a flash animated adaptation that made it an 8th Doctor story instead, so I figure this is the first time they actually do the whole thing as something besides an audio story?

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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Fri Oct 13, 2017 8:45 am

Skyquake87 wrote:Haven't they done that many versions of that now that surely everyone must be beyond giving much of a toot?
Yep. Existing footage (with links) done on VHS and DVD. The McGann audio remake. The novelisation (multiple novelisations?).

I really don't see the logic in prioritising an incomplete unbroadcast story, when all recorded footage is already out there already, over... well, actual lost episodes.

It's just weird that the Crusade only needs two episodes doing (the same as the Underwater Menace, the Moonbase and the Ice Warriors, all of which have had a release), and there's a few others that only need three episodes... yet they've decided to prioritise Shada, where even the people making it at the time decided it wasn't worth picking up again and finishing next season.

Was there a poll? Did I miss it? Is this Brexit and Trump all over again? Were the people of OPG consulted on this and the result was hijacked by a group of extreme right wing Who fans who think an unfinished Tom Baker story will give them their country back?

What the hell is going on?

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Post by inflatable dalek » Fri Oct 13, 2017 2:43 pm

Yeah, them seem to have dropped the ball on not doing a Hartnell for Christmas.

But, I suppose the thing is the soundtracks of the missing episodes exist and are ready to go and can be animated any time. On the other hand, as morbid as it sounds, the surviving Shada cast aren't getting any younger and if they were ever going to do it with Tom Baker it probably is now or never.

As to why generally, it's a new Tom Baker Doctor Who performance. It'll sell and be popular. Of the previous versions, I think only the book will have been experienced by more than a few 1000 people, so it'll still be new to most of a potential audience. That's the advantage of Douglas Adams being an evergreen author, there are always new people discovering his work for whom "Oh, he did some Doctor Who? Let's check it out!" will provide a steady stream of folk who don't know it backwards.

And Ian Levine's meltdown over them not using his version was hilarious.
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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Fri Oct 13, 2017 5:16 pm

inflatable dalek wrote:Of the previous versions, I think only the book will have been experienced by more than a few 1000 people, so it'll still be new to most of a potential audience.
Do we know how well the previous DVD release sold?

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Post by Tetsuro » Sat Oct 14, 2017 11:25 am

Wasn't the previous DVD release the one bundled with the documentary? That one seemed more like a special interest release to me, in the same vein as Lost in Time in that only hardcore Whovians would be interested in that sort of thing.

And the Lost in Time box set itself somehow seems a bit quaint now, with so many of the episodes on it being released on their own, either with animated or recently discovered episodes.

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Post by inflatable dalek » Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:15 pm

Not sure about the Shada DVD, I do know the all time best seller Genesis did about 70 000 copies in its first year, so whilst I'm assuming a fag end of the line packed in with an old documentary release wouldn't have been one of their peak sellers, it's a fair point it's probably more than a few 1000.

A heavily promoted DVD/blu Ray release with new Tom Baker stuff should easily outpace it though.

One point I few people on GB have made is that several of the missing stories have already had as many or even more "Official" releases than Shada (anything up to and including book, CD, MP3 CD, audio download, partial video release, partial DVD release, "Complete" animated DVD release... the Wheel in Space recon is even on an American streaming service for some reason no one quite understands!) so it's not as if they're being ignored at the expense of the unfinished story.
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Post by Ryan F » Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:52 pm

Bit of a storm brewing around the latest DWM... add together the first letter of every sentence in “The Watcher’s” column and it reads PANINI AND BBC WORKDWIDE ARE C**TS (censored in case Ralph Burns is reading).Image

DWM have asked fans to keep this quiet, because this could lose them their BBC licence, and the major DW forums seem to be co-operating by deleting all posts about it. But it’s kinda funny.
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Post by inflatable dalek » Tue Oct 24, 2017 6:07 am

The effort that must have taken is insane (though it doesn't quite flow, which really the editor should have spotted and asked for a rewrite on even if they didn't notice the hidden words). I certainly hope the motivation was more than the new editor not keeping them on, else that's excessive.
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Post by Cliffjumper » Tue Oct 24, 2017 7:02 pm

inflatable dalek wrote:The effort that must have taken is insane
Type it all out starting a new line at a time then delete the spaces inbetween; it's much easier to do it that way than to get it to flow in a layout Mona Simpson style because you can vary all the sentence lengths so they're natural. My posts and sites are genuinely packed with it.

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Post by Skyquake87 » Tue Oct 24, 2017 7:49 pm

I like the 'In A Nutshell' closing :lol:

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Post by inflatable dalek » Fri Oct 27, 2017 4:29 pm

We've all just been rereading everything Cliffy ever wrote haven't we?

There's this weird thing with the digital version where rather than removing the page they've rewritten it so as to remove the sneakiness. The "Don't talk about!" stance in the thread on Gallifrey base is pretty much comedy gold as well.

In other news, in the run up to Christmas I've decided to try and psych up for it with a run of regeneration stories, Moff Highlights and general associated gubbins. Starting with The Other Other Hartnell in the Five Doctors earlier in the week.

As I've watched Tenth Planet recently, I'll hopefully be ploughing through The War Games tomorrow...
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Post by Skyquake87 » Fri Nov 03, 2017 7:36 am

The latest issue of Private Eye has some background on the kerfuffle at the mag...

Worldwide (the beeb''s commercial arm) have been irked by the mag's increasing independence and seized on recent interviewees comments on Brexit and Trump as evidence of political bias, which is a no-no for BBC mags and launched a full inquiry, insisting all those who work on the magazine undergo a training course.

The previous editor also fell out with BBC Wales after being critical of Class (which from having read, whilst critical of the decisions made around the broadcast and promotion of the show, was actually supportive of the programme!) and took a pay off and left.

Panini have also taken to slashing the magazine's budget, which has meant several long running columns are being axed, hence the acrostic in the above.

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Post by inflatable dalek » Fri Nov 03, 2017 8:10 pm

The Watcher has also been outed as regular Dalek operator (and David Bowie biographer!) Nick Pegg.

The former editor of DWM has been keen to point out he wasn't paid out and left the mag at exactly the time he'd been planning to do for years (the same time the Moff left).

However, other bits of the PE piece have been confirmed as true, in particular that everyone who writes for the mag has had to go on a political neutrality course.

It's interesting the BBC have so firmly come out as saying Pegg was sacked. That means either this Watcher column was intended to be the last (either it was going on for a few more months, or even right up to the end of the 100 objects idea in about a year, but with much firmer constraints stopping things like the anti-Trump piece he wrote last year) or he was still down for some other work on the book.

That's assuming the BBC haven't been stupid enough to say someone has been sacked for this when they'd already left the magazine, which would basically open them to all sorts of lawsuits.

What's surprising is how firmly Pegg has cut himself off from all other Who work. He won't be in a Dalek again, nor do any Big Finish stuff. He's got other stings in his bow, and I doubt that was making him rich, but it's strange to end such a long running association, something must have gone very sour.

DWM has been lucky enough to have way more leeway than any other licensed magazine ever would. But equally, it's understandable the BBC would want something designed to promote one of their products to be first and foremost a PR machine.

Oh, and Pegg apparently writes for Private Eye from time to time, making folk wonder at the impartiality and authorship of the piece...
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Post by Skyquake87 » Fri Nov 03, 2017 8:35 pm

Aye, PE confirmed that Pegg is The Watcher. If he did write the piece, it explains a lot of the Who-related pieces that have popped up during the Moffat-era.

I think the Beeb is under such scrutiny these days and it's existence and funding so thoroughly questioned that I can understand that even minor acts of criticism or discussion about the world, in a magazine that is about a sci-fi TV show, will be something they're worried will get in the frothing tabloids and bring an unwelcome sh*t storm to their door.

That an all the usual 'brand values' cobblers that they'll be wanting to bring to heel. I'm guessing sales are down on the mag and Panini's titles across the board if they're trimming things, and the timing of all this has just been unfortunate.

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Post by inflatable dalek » Sat Nov 04, 2017 1:53 pm

Sales are low at the moment, another massive gap before the next regular bunch of episodes probably doesn't help. Especially as I suspect the licence fee is based on peak Smith era sales.
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Post by Cyberstrike nTo » Sat Nov 04, 2017 2:48 pm

Skyquake87 wrote:The latest issue of Private Eye has some background on the kerfuffle at the mag...

Worldwide (the beeb''s commercial arm) have been irked by the mag's increasing independence and seized on recent interviewees comments on Brexit and Trump as evidence of political bias, which is a no-no for BBC mags and launched a full inquiry, insisting all those who work on the magazine undergo a training course.

The previous editor also fell out with BBC Wales after being critical of Class (which from having read, whilst critical of the decisions made around the broadcast and promotion of the show, was actually supportive of the programme!) and took a pay off and left.

Panini have also taken to slashing the magazine's budget, which has meant several long running columns are being axed, hence the acrostic in the above.
It's not the show itself hasn't made political comments.

In his first episode Calpadi made a comment after he learned he has a Scottish accent made a comment about his eyebrows should succeed from the rest face and form their own country this aired around the time of the Scottish Independence Vote (or maybe that was when some of us Americans were becoming aware of it). In the current series finale he made a crack about humanity with no emotions and empathy is how we wind up with Trump.
Calpadi's Doctor has also said he doesn't like Americans a couple of times, and once said that humans stand around and elect an idiot to take care of things (even though he was the idiot).

The show has blown up Downing Street during the first season of the new series.

And in one episode toward the end of Tennat's run had some homeless guys say something to effect that "Obama was going to save the world with his economic plan"

Torchwood: Children of the Earth and Torchwood: Miracle Day are crammed with political messages and critique.

So the current show has had several mentions of politics and political statements and the actors, writers, and people who DWM interview also have their own political beliefs and when they are asked they answered and if BBC Worldwide then they can cancel it and I wonder how big the backlash would be.
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Post by inflatable dalek » Sat Nov 04, 2017 3:48 pm

Franchise owners often put more restrictions on a licencee than they do themselves. Plus IIRC BBC Magazines (or at least the non-political or news ones) are required by charter to be partisan.

Of course, most of the reaction to the Peter Davison interview was OTT considering his Brexit views were about a page at most in a massive feature and saved repeating a "And then Janet's boobs popped out" story.
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Post by inflatable dalek » Fri Nov 24, 2017 5:08 pm

Everyone's saying nice things about Shada (bar it being presented as a 2 and 1/4 hour film, no one's sure if the DVD/Blu will have an episodic option), so looks like they've pulled it off.

Interestingly it seems they've worked around the cast members no longer with us instead of recasting, K9's dialogue is taken from other season 17 stories for example rather than just getting John Lesson in.

And that photo of Tom in costume is just delightfully silly, whatever the context of what they've filmed. And it's been fun to see people debate the "How can he be the Fourth Doctor again when he's so much older?" as if they're repressing Day of the Doctor.
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Post by inflatable dalek » Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:10 pm

And I've realised I never said anything about the finished Shada!

It's very nicely done. The focus is very much not on making something aimed at the real hadcore fans (the ones who cheerfully watch recons of missing stories and wouldn't find the format shifts odd), there's a real attempt here to make something that will work for folk who just like Tom Baker and/or Douglas Adams. Most notably with a new scene being added to make the first transition to animation as smooth as possible.

Plus the editing on the live action footage has been tightened up considerably, not so anything's cut in terms of dialogue, but it zips along much more than previous releases or indeed what it would have been like had it gone out in 1979. Previously the scenes I'd found flat and badly performed are improved tenfold.

the animation itself, whilst clearly not Disney level, is still up a level from Power of the Daleks and does the job nicely, and all the reunited actors slip into their parts well. I think Christopher Neame may actually be even better than he was before. The decision not to recast K9 or Professor Chronotis does mean some cut scenes and rejigging, but if anything the reveal of the Professor's secret is handled better here than in the script where he just comes out with it at the worst possible moment (ironically the novelisation changes that moment for that very reason).

And nerd bonus points for taking dialogue from his other role in The Keep of Traken for the Professor's one line in the animated segment. Shame they didn't use Timelash.

It's not perfect, Shada as both a production and a script never was (the various changes Adams made for the first Dirk Gently book--like having only one student sidekick instead of two--are all improvements). But for the first time the original works as a piece of entertainment rather than an historical curio.

And having Tom Baker film the final scene was a brilliant idea. You're so used to the switch between young Tom and drawn Tom him suddenly being old Tom doesn't take you out of the drama, and the discussion of what people will think of him in 200 years is perfect for a moment like that. It's tremendously heart warming. And the season 17 console room they cobbled together from the Experience version looked great!
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Post by inflatable dalek » Fri Jan 12, 2018 4:04 pm

David Fisher, who is probably and unfairly best remembered for not writing City of Death but also contributed Androids of Tara; Stones of Blood, Creature From the Pit and The Leisure Hive, has died.

Which means over the weekend I'm going to be making time for Creature as it's:

A: Fab.

B: Has the only episode of Doctor Who actually broacast on my birthday of 17th November (though with an Autumn start to the new series and my birthday being a Saturday this year I might get a second in 55 years!).

In other news, it looks like Tom Baker's first season is coming out on blu ray. Not so bothered myself, but if it gets a corresponding DVD boxset as well it'll be nice for Classic Who to get cheaper and more easy to sort out releases than the forty odd there are for Tom alone so noobs wanting to try the show out have easier options.
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