Saturday, 19 October 2013


Optimumque est, ut volgo dixere, aliena insania frui.
- Pliny (the Elder) 

Asked whether viewers might also see the recovered episodes, without having to pay Apple £1.89 per episode or £9.99 to download the complete stories, BBC Worldwide said licence-fee payers had already enjoyed a chance to watch the programmes in the late 60s. 2

Me:  Well, we should probably have a chat. 

Him:  About? 

Me:  Don’t worry, you haven’t done anything wrong. 

Him:  I’d guessed that because you’re typing. 

Me:  Very meta. 

Him:  Whu? 

Me:  Nice.  No, I reckon we should have a chat about a few things to do with Doctor Who and the blog. 

Him:  Like? 

Me:  Well, the recovery of the missing episodes first off. 

Him:  The Feast of Steven?  That was a surprise. 

Me:  Ha!  Especially as the BBC were destroying it as it was being broadcast. 

Him:  You made that joke when we were watching it. 

Me:  All those thousands of years ago.  Well, the thing is that a few of these things have finally escaped the BBC Canteen. 

Him:  With the help of [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers].1 

Me:  I’m sure that’s just something that crops up accidentally during the interview with Philip Morris in this month’s DWM.  Of which, more in a bit. 

Him:  When? 

Me: 'In a bit.' 

Him:  When’s that? 

Me:  Later. 

Him:  Are we there yet? 


Me:  Yeah.  The whole interview’s really strange.  It reads a lot like a blue-penciled, "Meet Denholm Reynholm" puff piece conducted for a Reynholm Industries internal newsletter.  I’d say that’s because it’s been written in a white-hot rush to beat an inexorable deadline - but it obviously hasn’t.  The whole business was hinted at in the small print of the last issue; the Terror of the Zygons review features mentions the recoveries; the restoration interviews make it quite clear this has been known about since before June and the two cover designs can’t have been knocked up in a lunchtime.  And fair play to genuine hero-of-the-hour, Philip Morris, for getting almost as many mentions throughout the issue as Mark Gatiss does.

It’s worth pointing out that Denholm Elliot played Marcus Brody in Raiders of the Lost Ark.  Which [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers]1 with [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers]1 and then [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers]1 after [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers].1  But I doubt any of that really happened. 

Him:  I have no idea how to respond to that. 

Me:  I can totally understand why BBC Worldwide are trying to milk the fans for as much as possible during this, the year of their daughter’s wedding. 

Him:  But…  What? 

Me:  It’s a Family Guy gag. 

Him:  It’s [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers].1 

Me:  If you say so.  Anyway, I think it’s fair to say that you don’t reach the final stages of ten year’s worth of DVD releases and then totally change the design of the packaging for the final couple...2 

Him:  Are you going to bring up the blog? 

Me:  Yeah, I’ll start gnashing and frothing otherwise. 

Him:  Well then, you’d better bring up the blog quick. 

Me:  Okay.  We’ve had an odd year with the blog – some of the entries have taken ages to put together and we sort of lost momentum because of things that happened in the real world. 

Him:  Right. 

Me:  And then we were about to really get back on track with The Web of Fear – which is largely typed up – when the noises from the BBC Canteen got too loud to ignore.3 

Him:  Right.  And then? 

Me:  Well, we’ve watched and made rough notes right the way up to The Space Pirates.  Also, I’ve done illos for almost all the rest of the Troughton stories and quite a few of the Pertwee ones, so we’re ready to get going properly at a moment's notice.  But…

Well, we’ve watched almost all of the recons – so we’ve turned out to be some of the last stragglers up the traditional Ascent.  Now though, it’s like there’s been a huge landslide and a new route’s opened up.  Personally, I’m tempted to hang on and see whether it looks worth attempting when all the clouds that’ve being kicked up by the Whoniversary have settled.  Basically, what I’m saying is that I think we should head back down to an earlier base camp and wait until the New Year to resume climbing. 

Him:  Ok.  

Me:  You sure? 

Him:  I think so. 

Me:  Smashing. Can we watch The Enemy of the World now?4 

Him:  Yeah, sure. 

Me:  And then The Web of Fear? 

Him:  Well, I don’t know.  I’ve been told that The Web of Fear’s not as good as we all thought it was going to be by a certain [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers].1 

Me:  Yeah.  I’m sure it’ll be better than the [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers]1 to try and get people watching Atlantis will turn out to be.5 

Him:  What do you mean? 

Me:  The ‘trailer’ that isn’t a trailer.  Unless it’s designed to show how the last fifty years has all been leading up to [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers].1  Which I’m sure it will, seeing as The Name of the Doctor and the recent [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers]1 both seem to suggest that’s where we’re going.

Him:  Do you think the trailer will be all the Doctors to date crowning [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers]1 as King? 

Me:  Ha!  I don't know.  I hope it's fantastic but I'm not expecting a miracle. 

Him:  Is that us? 

Me:  Unless I’ve gone off on one in the footnotes, yeah.2  Oh – this doesn’t mean we won’t be doing stuff with the blog between now and New Year. 

Him:  Well that’s fine then. 

Me:  But it’s also not going to hurt to find us on Facebook or Twitter. 

Him:  Are you going to link those the wrong way around again? 

Me:  Silence, Boy!  I’m not a total imbecile! 

Him: "2" 

Me:  Tch. 

Him:  There we go.

1.  Him:  What lawyers? 

2.  Pshaw!  Yeah, right.

3.  I think it’s fair to say that BBC Worldwide were caught on the hop this time.  There’s an interesting, slightly off-message, article in the Radio Times.  I’m looking forward to, one day, reading the book about what’s really been going on over the last few years.  “Gallifrey Babylon”, I reckon.

So, our gap until the New Year is sort of to give time for any new releases to be announced, so I can work out which ones we’ll have to go back and do again, and which ones we don’t.  That doesn’t mean that there won’t be posts in the interim though – there’s a special present lined up for the Fiftieth that got lost in the stampede last year.  Yeah, we’ll still be here.

I’m going to announce quietly that I’ve written some articles for the Doctor Who Appreciation Society recently, so I’m hoping they'll be appearing in Celestial Toyroom over the next few months.  I’m also doing ‘research’ for a thing that’s still nebulous but means I get to go library spelunking, which is glorious fun. 

4.  Yeah, I’m excited, but did you really think I wasn’t going to wait until the Him was here before watching them?  Part of the deal is that we watch them together, which is why we still haven’t seen either The Ambassadors of Death or The Space Pirates recons yet.  Or the escaped copies of [content deleted at the advice of our lawyers].1 

5.  As you can tell, this was written after the announcement of the trailer for the trailer for the announcement for the trailer, but before the trailer for the trailer for the announcement of the trailer was shown.  Before Atlantis.  Again.

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