18 October 2017

Paradise Towers Episode 3

Season24@30. It is in this brisk episode that the viewer might start to question some of the design choices. With the narrative simmering nicely part 3 is home to some crucial story points not least the reveal of exactly what is lurking in the basement.  Yet what would sound great in a script is somehow undermined by the silly look the designer has given it. Like the rogue cleaners it is too pristine when all around is grime and concrete. In this case resembles something from Top of the Pops, a look reinforced by the ceaseless sub Pet Shop Boys incidental music that has been deployed to accompany every movement. Then there’s Richard Briers’ costume. I only noticed this week that it had CC on the eppulatte of what is more of a quasi military uniform rather than some sort of maintenance gear. It’s as if some of the people working on the story had totally different ideas to others as to how to realise the script. I suppose they just didn’t do tone meetings back then.
Richard Briers found time to promote his latest single on Top of the Pops

11 October 2017

Paradise Towers Episode 2

Season24@30. In an episode where little actually happens the Doctor and Mel seem to end up where they started. Mel is back at Tabby and Tilda’s, the Doctor is roaming the carrydors before ending up again in the hands of the rather flip floppy Red Kangs. One minute they don’t like him then all it takes is a few cans of Fizzaid and they love him only for the arrival of a caretaker search party to turn them against him again. Its fair to say that this episode makes very little difference to the overall narrative.

6 October 2017

The Invisible Enemy

Season24@40. Or `Invisibull Nme` if you’re reading this in the far future. This story has a poor reputation derived largely from the appearance of antagonist the Nucleus of the Swarm which is basically a giant prawn made out of coloured plastic that needs to be pushed along the floor to move. However dodgy looking monsters came with the territory in the 1970s and if they were a problem then an average of almost eight million people would not have been watching. This is a Bob and Dave extravaganza and for two blokes with such normal names they certainly knew how to throw all kinds of colourful things at Doctor Who viewers over the years. Against a track record that included the Axons, the Gellguards and Eldrad’s blobby domain, the Nucleus seems positively tame by comparison! Besides there are other faults in a story whose relentless enthusiasm often gets the better of its logic. One thing’s for certain - `The Invisible Enemy` is never dull!

4 October 2017

Paradise Towers Episode 1

Season24@30. A quantum leap from the shenanigans on Lakertya this episode is the moment where Doctor Who emerged from its post `Caves of Androzani` downturn and started to get good again. Stephen Wyatt and the production team create an intriguing environment in which to place the Doctor and Mel. It’s an environment the duo explore just like the old days but this is a strange place that is as much 1987 as anything. Colour coded girl gangs, rule touting officials, eccentric old ladies and corridors that are actually long enough to allow the participants to run properly- this is great stuff. It’s a pleasure to watch.

29 September 2017

Miscellaneous Pix and Bits!

I seem to have these bits lying about and no real place for them and no context to put them in so I thought I'd collect them here by way of a post. Some of the print may not be that clear depending on technical stuff. Enjoy! First one is from an early Tom Baker as the Doctor photo session....

27 September 2017

Time and the Rani Episode 4

Season 24@30. After all the meandering of the past two weeks this final episode gets the story into gear with surprisingly effective results. You do wonder about the Tetraps though. This week they come out of their den to have a walk to the Centre of Leisure and there’s about 15 of them we see leaving the Rani’s HQ. Yet only three enter the Centre. Have the others gone shopping? I love the way too they refer to themselves with the forename `Tetrap`. “Tetrap Steve, Tetrap Joyce we’re going to the Centre of Leisure”. The other thing about them is that despite having eyes all around their heads they still turn round to look at things! Tetraps- crazy name, crazy guys!
Tetrap Joyce and Tetrap Steve on their way to Aldi

22 September 2017

Two Giant Posters Inside!

The second of the mid Seventies Doctor Who poster magazines is superior in content terms and is produced by a different team (Harpdown Publishing in Barking) and declares itself to be “a special monster packed issue”. Those two giant posters are of the Doctor from `Brain of Morbius` and Lynx from `The Time Warrior` It does mention inside that it includes “a giant poster worthy of the biggest star of Saturday viewing” by which I assume they mean the Doctor and not Lynx! Unlike its predecessor all of the photos in this issue are in colour and it is as `monster packed` as promised.