suppose it had to happen at some stage. The BBC has started releasing DOCTOR WHO stories
in which the extras are more interesting than the stories.
Should BBC WORLDWIDE (in association with the new series’ producers) continue
to scam dedicated fans, both the current and the future ones, releasing singular
episodes on as ‘one-pack’ DVDs (as opposed to a ‘season boxset’)
then the standard set by the THE DALEK INVASION OF EARTH DVD
should be followed.
stand-alone features are simply that; stand-alone, and could have been released
without the baggage of the eponymous 1964 story. An excelling set of noteworthy ‘featurettes’,
balanced in content and context.
seems a shame to single out one item, especially as it required no additional
filming by the Restoration Team of fans, arranging of interviews, extra special
effects, and research but there is one crowning glory.
FILM is a (all too) short, silent (but if you listen carefully you could
almost hear Hartnell saying “my child, put it away”) colour
(yes, oh yes) 8MM film shot by the departing Carole Ann Ford. Unfortunately,
the cine film became double-exposed creating a space-time psychedelic melange
of disparate images. Nevertheless, this is the nearest we have got to see the “Hartnell
family” at their most relaxed and playful (during the final day of studio
rehearsal on October 23rd 1964).
posterity sakes, will Christopher Eccleston be persuaded to keep a video diary
as he embarks on his DOCTOR WHO career?
visited the set of WARRIORS OF THE DEEP, back in 1983 (as part
of a Design College course invitation), I admire the skilled relationship between
a director and camera. The “innovative” animated demonstration
of how the final episode was recorded using the camera script, clips and the
designer’s original floor plans was fascinating to watch.
TO SCREEN we are given the “director’s gallery” perspective
as the bulky, heavy 1960s TV cameras are hauled around actors and flats. This
could have been even better executed if a 3-D CGI representation of the studio
set had been generated - we “fly-theough“ the studio set
as it ‘rises‘ from the flat floor plan. Maybe next time.
natural follow-on is FUTURE VISIONS. Basically, an interview
with designer Spencer Chapman. With today’s big-budget television shows,
this featurette reminds us that everything was so different in the days of black-and-white.
Limited studio space, time and money. However, this featurette affirms that Chapman’s
contribution to this serial exceeded all expectations (more so during the ‘matching’ of
locations and studio sets.
perennial Gary Russell present a pseudo-retrospective (NOW AND THEN)
as he revisits the many locations used, and only serves to reinforce that London
will be the ideal location for the Ninth Doctor and Rose Tyler to visit.
TARDIS materialises inside a London Eye ‘pod’ or in The Globe’s
additional ‘extras’ are more ho-hum than oh-erm. Struggling interviews
with guest-stars (FUTURE MEMORIES), yawningly tedious discussions
about Dalek voices (TALKING DALEKS), sickening sweet BLUE
PETER cake making sketch (DALEK CAKES) and a tuppence-ha’penny
radio play (WHATEVER HAPPENED TO…SUSAN).
for the new CGI sequences, no. DOCTOR WHO archive material,
yes, should be ‘cleaned’ but not adulterated. It’s
like adding the 21st century colloquial-slang, “in-it” to
Shakespeare’s HENRY V speech to the massed ranks.