Coming Soon, “The Tenth Planet”


There’s a huge number of First and Second Doctor episodes of Doctor Who that simply don’t exist anymore. Now even if you aren’t a fan, you should understand the tragedy of any sort of at least decent entertainment being lost forever. It’s a great shame, and while we hold out hope that missing episodes will be found again (and some have been, as recently as 2011), we fans of the series know the reality all too well, and know that it just isn’t likely.

That’s why fans like me are placed that the BBC have began hiring companies to do animated versions of missing episodes. The first up were the two missing episodes for the Second Doctor story, “The Invasion“. This was followed this month with the released of “The Reign of Terror“, with the two missing episodes there animated by, of all people, Big Finish.

But something was wrong here. Those were decent stories, sure, but the elephant in the room was “The Tenth Planet“. This is one of the most historically significant stories in TV history, being the first where we have one Doctor transition into another. It’s how the show has lasted for 50 years, and while three of the four episodes exist in full, the fourth and final is missing from the BBC archives. Many fans, like myself, have wondered aloud why the BBC chose to animate other stories and ignore this one.

Well, thankfully that’s no longer the case, as this past weekend an animated version of the missing episode was announced, meaning that we shall soon be able to enjoy the story in full on DVD. Why this wasn’t done sooner is anyone’s guess, but at least it’s being done now.

This does raise a question, however. Later this year, all complete stories of Doctor Who will be available on DVD. We know that “The Ice Warriors” will be released at some point this year, but we don’t know if the two missing episodes for that serial will be animated. There hasn’t been any official announcement, so my guess is not, but if that’s the case, why not? Since there’s now three stories with animation as precedence, surely these ones should be animated, too?

I guess we will find out soon enough if more animated versions of the many missing stories are provided. I certainly hope they are, since to me that’s the best way to enjoy the missing stories. But even if they aren’t, at least we have “The Tenth Planet” to look forward to. At last. At long, long last.


Excuse Me, I Have Something in My Eye…

Possibly caused by this. Now I must go…er…not cry. Yes.

On the Sofa – Novemeber 5, 2011

Used a new camera this time. We were able to put it closer to the couch. Amazing how much that improves the sound quality!

The trailer for the unmade third movie

The Cushing films on Amazon US

The Cushing films on Amazon UK, only £4.49!

Watch the first film on Hulu!

Sci Fi Surplus #175

Well, now you can hear my dulcet tones coming from the Sci Fi Surplus podcast! Aren’t you all lucky? Yes, you are. Trust me. 😀

Cell Phones and Cancer

So the big WHO paper on cell phones and cancer is out and the results are… maybe. Maybe there’s a link. There might not be. But maybe. Of course since they said maybe this means that the media frenzy has only intensified. Check out this somewhat alarmist paragraph from CNN’s story about this.

Radiation from cell phones can possibly cause cancer, according to the World Health Organization. The agency now lists mobile phone use in the same “carcinogenic hazard” category as lead, engine exhaust and chloroform.

And now for the less alarmist point of view, P Z Myers.

Is anyone out there really chatty? Could you call up my microwave breakfast burrito and yak at it for a while? How long do you think it will take, I’m getting hungry?

Phil Plait also has some words on this. These guys are scientists, though Plait is an astronomer and not a biology type. Myers is a biology type, however, and neither one seems at all concerned about this. I know for a fact I’m not concerned. That cell phones “might” and “possibly” could increase my risk of cancer makes me yawn. These are weasel words. Get me some real studies showing real problems and then maybe we can talk, but so far there isn’t much here.

47 Years and Counting!

As of today it’s been 47 years since Doctor Who first appeared on screen in the UK! It ran fairly steadily until 1989, went off the air until 2005 (with a rather infamous made-for-TV movie airing on Fox in 1996), and has been airing and doing quite well since then! There’s been 769 episodes, numerous books and a great many audio adventures, plus spin-off series and even a theatrical film! Now that’s success!

For the curious, you can see my guide to the essential Who here. You can read about Gallifrey One, the convention held every year in LA, here. And right here on this page, you can see all the opening titles! Enjoy!

Sic Transit Decimus Doctorus – 2005 – 2010

2005 - 2010

Later tonight BBC America will be broadcasting part two of “The End of Time”, the final Doctor Who episode to feature David Tennant as the 10th Doctor, and the first to feature an appearance by Matt Smith as the 11th Doctor.

I go into this with mixed feelings. I really liked the 10th Doctor in a lot of ways. He was manic, insane, entertaining and enjoyable. On the other hand, the writing for the character was very inconsistent and he displayed a lot of questionable morality. This was overcome, however, by Tennant as the Doctor. He was always interesting, never boring and wonderfully fun in the role.

Matt Smith is a bit young for the part, I feel, but we shall see. I just watched the regeneration scene on YouTube (I cheated, yes), and, well, in the roughly two minutes of screen time he gets, he seems to do well. We’ll see what he’s like come the spring when series five starts.

Farewell, 10th Doctor. For all your flaws, you will be missed.