• Tag Archives Season 3
  • Wrapup — The War Machines

    Hello everyone, the Historian here, welcoming you to the final story wrapup for season three! Only two years late!

    No, but seriously, let’s get to the wrapup.

    PRODUCTION NOTES: Innes Lloyd and Gerry Davis had yet to put their mark on Doctor Who, having been handed several previously commissioned stories when they took over the show, but the new producer and story editor had definite ideas of what they wanted to do. The idea was to make the show both more contemporary (pulling in the teenage audience a bit more) and bring more science fiction ideas to the fore. To prepare for the former, they had Peter Purves’ Steven written out in “The Savages” and decided to not renew Jackie (“Dodo”) Lane’s contract, which ran only to the second episode of the following story. Lloyd reportedly broke the news to Lane, telling her it had nothing to do with her performance. She was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Understandably, she felt a bit hard done by, and refused to talk about or have anything to do with the show until the 50th anniversary celebrations in 2013. (A little time travel for you there, given the date of this entry!)

    To replace Dodo, the team came up with two characters. “Rich,” who had been planned as a Steven replacement before Dodo was dropped, became Ben Jackson, a sailor in his early 20s. Interestingly, given the problems John Wiles had encountered when he wanted Dodo to speak in something other than RP, actor Michael Craze was allowed to speak in a cockney accent as Ben, giving us a very different class of character, figuratively and literally, than the show had seen up to this point. Once the decision to replace Dodo was finalized, it was decided that an up-to-date female character, a “swinging” career girl somewhat older than any “Doctor Who girl” since Barbara Wright. They decided to call her Polly and to cast Anneke Wills, an up-and-coming actress who had visited the Doctor Who set several months before when her then-husband, Michael Gough, had portrated the Celestial Toymaker. Polly would be posh West End to Ben’s working class East End–all very trendy!

    Now let’s move on to the second part of Lloyd and Davis’ plan to revitize the show. In order to have more of a science basis to the science fiction (really science fantasy, let’s be honest) in the show, they decided to hire a Scientific Advisor. (Two words that have great resonance for Doctor Who fans!) They finally settled on Dr. Christopher “Kit” Pedlar, after asking him how he would incorporate the new Post Office Tower into a science fiction plot. He suggested a super computer attempting to take over the world using a network of other computers and robotic agents. He got the job and Doctor Who got a new story idea!

    Ian Stuart Black, after writing “The Savages,” was brought in at the last minute to replace another writer…and there I’ll leave the production side of things, save to recommend you look at this story’s Brief History of Time (Travel) page for more info!

    PROJECT REPORT: Let me start this section with an admission. While watching this story, the Project members did not realize (and, for some reason, I did not remember) that the version of the story we watched was technically incomplete, with small sections of some of the episodes too damaged or missing for the DVD. The Restoration Team used off-air recordings and reused/repurposed footage to compensate for this…which explains some of our reaction to, among other things, the battle scene in episode three.

    I feel like we really liked this story…and weren’t impressed at the same time. The ideas were certainly appreciated–much was made of the “hey, it’s the internet!” thing–but the execution, especially the War Machines themselves, came in for some derision. We were, with the possible exception of Schmallturm, happy to see Dodo go…but were unhappy with the way she was unceremoniously “disappeared.”

    On the other hand, we all agreed that Ben and Polly (or “Popeye and Eye Candy,” as they have been dubbed, regardless of how Ketina tends to type them!) were a fantastic addition to the cast. Michael Craze and Anneke Wills immediately impressed the Project. We can’t wait to see what happens to them as they make their first journey in the TARDIS!

    Here are the links to the episode discussions:

    Episode 1
    Episode 2
    Episode 3
    Episode 4

    Well, it only remains for me to add the BBC Episode Guide link and to once again thank our guest for the Episode 4 discussion, Max. Come back soon, Max!

    A Third Season wrapup will come soon–can’t say when, but soon! Until then, I remain


  • Wrapup – The Savages

    Hello everyone, the Historian here and I am on a roll! Don’t expect posting in the gaps to keep up at this pace, but I will admit I am feeling a bit more optimistic about actually catching up! Once again, watched in 2011, wrapup written in 2014, now let’s get to it!

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  • Wrapup – The Gunfighters

    Hello everyone, the Historian here, once again attempting to fill in the gaps left by the posting pause. As before, regardless of the date of this post, this is being written in January of 2014. Last time, things got a little involved, so I’m going to try to streamline this (and future) story wrapups. Let me know what you think.

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  • Wrapup — The Celestial Toymaker


    Hello everyone, the Historian here. At this point I am one full story behind where the Project actually is, but I hope to catch up soon! For now, let’s talk about one of Doctor Who’s early experiments.
    I have to admit, I was surprised by how much disagreement and disapproval this story provoked among Project members.


    And that’s where I left things back in 2011, when the first iteration of this blog kind of ground to a halt. Ketina has gone over the whys and wherefores elsewhere, but briefly, writing the summaries and the pressure I was putting on myself got the better of me. I kept falling further behind, and the further behind I got, the harder it became to get myself going again…and two years got away from me. As I type this, we are about to finish the fifth season (one to go!), and the old blogspot website has lain fallow. Then, last year, Ketina decided to take matters into her own hands and here we are! She is posting our discussions and I plan/hope to add wrapup posts for stories and (I hope!) seasons. Eventually, if I get very industrious, I may even add some summaries!
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  • 2 – The Hall of Dolls

    Hello everyone, the Historian here, getting closer and closer to catching up! On 1st July, 2011, I was joined by Ketina, Ronelyn, Photobug and special guests Altair and Ezio for the second episode of this surreal story. Without further ado, let’s get to the (much shorter) summary!

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  • 1 – The Celestial Toyroom

    Hello everyone, the Historian here, still trying to catch up to where the TARDIS Project has gotten to. On 24 June, 2011, I was joined by Ketina, Ronelyn, Schmallturm, Spoo, Photobug and guests Altair and Ezio as we journeyed from Refusis II into…the unknown! So, let’s get to the extremely truncated summary!

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  • Wrapup – The Ark

    Hello everyone, the Historian here, on the horns of a dilemma. How to go back and wrap up a story that we finished watching just over a month before? I am still determined to catch up, however, and I owe you all a post for this story!

    <Note: This was originally posted on 7/18/2011. For moving it to the new site I back dated it to 6/18/2011 so it falls in the correct episode order. Thus the Historian’s explanation above.  This is also our last story wrap-up from the old site and format.
    – Ketina>
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  • 4 – The Bomb

    Hello everyone, the Historian here, continuing my attempts to catch up to what the Project is actually watching. I’m only three episodes behind now, so I have hopes! I’m still going to be doing the truncated summaries, which are actually working well enough that I’m thinking of sticking with this format–which is closer to what we started with anyway. What do you, the readers at home, think?

    So, on 17 June, 2011, I was joined by Ketina, Ronelyn, Schmallturm, Photobug and Cz, when we watched the last episode in this story. So, without further ado, let’s get to the summary!
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