Hello.  Welcome to my blog about British archive television.  This will highlight programmes I’ve been watching whilst my Twitter feed – embedded in the blog and also directly accessable via @archivetvmus71 – contains many more archive treats.

The posts are broken up into categories (by decade and type – comedy, drama, etc).  You can also explore via the tags lower down the page.  Many of the programmes which have multiple posts can also be accessed via the top of the main menu (BBC/ITV/Christmas TV/Doctor Who/Grange Hill).

These top menu options have the posts re-arranged from oldest to newest (WordPress blogs display the newest posts by default).  So if you’re looking to read about, say, The Day of the Triffids episode by episode, then selecting it via the BBC button next to the Home button is the best option – since the posts will be in the correct order!

If you notice any broken links or have any comments or suggestions then please leave a message on the relevant post or drop me an email at archivetvmusings@gmail.com

I also have a theatre related blog at Theatre Musings.

364 thoughts on “About

  1. The device that Eddie showed Hilda and Stan came out in the 1950s when nobody had colour television.

    It was in 1977 that households with colour tvs outnumbered households with black and white sets only. I know some people who didn’t get colour tv until the eighties, and I even knew someone who said that the first time she watched a colour tv was when she watched Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s wedding. (The most boring news story of 1981.)

    There was a black and white edition of Tomorrow’s World where they showed a fake tv commercial, and they used some sort of optical illusion to make it look as if it was in colour.

    As you can see from the Coronation Street clip, in those days if they filmed a black and white television on a colout tv camera the picture looke blue.


  2. Hello, seeing as you are a Welsh citizen, I wonder what you think about the BBC adaptation of “The Old Devils” that will be on BBC4 (and then IPlayer) tonight? It’s one of my very favourite novels, but – you probably know the feeling – when you see a book adapted for TV it usually disappoints, because it’s not quite how you imagined the characters looking. Also, as the book consists almost entirely of the characters’ thoughts, feelings and daydreams, I really can’t see how it could be transferred to TV. I will watch, but I’m ready to be disappointed !


    • I’ll certainly be watching with interest as I don’t think I’ve seen it since its original transmission. I can sympathise with the irritation felt when a well-loved novel doesn’t quite translate as you’d hope to the screen – but hopefully the excellent cast in this one will be some compensation …


  3. The interview with John Nathan-Turner was too spoilerific. He told Doctor Who Magazine that he’d like to do a werewolf story, and was considering, and he stressed considering, bringing back an old monster in the new series. But he said it wouldn’t be the Daleks because he wanted to give them a rest. And the Cybermen appearing at the end of part one of Earthshock was a surprise.

    During the Peter Davison and Colin Baker eras they brought back the Cybermen, the Daleks and Davros, the Yeti, the Silurians and Sea Devils, and the Sontarans, and if Michael Grade hadn’t messed about with the series, they were going to bring back the Autons and Ice Warriors. And that was over a period of four years.

    In the twenty-first century when the series came back they brought back the Autons, the Daleks, the Cybermen, the Sontarans, Davros, the Silurians, the Ice Warriors, the Great Intelligence, the Zygons, and only last year brought back the Sea Devils. And that was over a period of seventeen years.


  4. Yesterday was the 40th anniversary of BBC’s breakfast tv. But the best breakfast tv programme was Channel 4 Daily.

    Going back a few days to when you celebrated Michael Aspel’s 90th birthday. Who was the actress who played to tea lady in Crackerjack?


  5. Happy 89th birthday to Tom Baker.

    Has that clip from Seaside Special been used in any Doctor Who DVDs? The Miss World leading the parade is Wilnelia Merced who later married Bruce Forsythe. The theme song for Seaside Special was written and sung by Mike Batt.

    Come to that has the clip of Tom Baker in George and the Dragon appeared on any Where Were They Then type programmes?


  6. Happy 89th birthday to Tom Baker.

    Has that clip from Seaside Special been used in any Doctor Who DVDs? The Miss World leading the parade is Wilnelia Merced who later married Bruce Forsythe. The theme song for Seaside Special was written and sung by Mike Batt.

    Come to that has the clip of Tom Baker in George and the Dragon appeared on any Where Were They Then type programmes?


  7. 47 years ago yesterday the last episode of The Brain of Morbius was shown for the first time. The episode’s main claim to fame is the mind battle between the Doctor and Morbius. First of all we see the Morbius brain creature on the screen, and then Morbius as he was before the Time Lords caught him. And then we see Tom Baker’s face, followed by Jon Pertwee, Patrick Troughton and William Hartnell, and then the faces of several members of the production team.

    Until a few years ago there were endless debates between fans as to whether these were earlier incarnations of the Doctor or Morbius. (If they’d made this serial a decade or more later they wouldn’t have needed to use pictures of members of the production team, but only three actors had [played Doctor Who on tv before Tome Baker.)

    In The Five Doctors, which Terrance Dicks wrote, and The Three Doctors, made when he was script editor, it was clearly stated that the William Hartnell Doctor was the earliest Doctor, but then in the second Jodie Whitaker serial it was revealed that he wasn’t the original, and there were many versions of the Doctor Who existed before the William Hartnell version, but he’d lost his memories of those incarnations.

    The picture of Richard Davies in a striped blazer was from the Doctor Who serial Delta and the Bannnermen. A Doctor Who story set in a fifties holiday camp was just the sort of original idea they could have done with a year or two earlier.


    • ps Somebody mentioned Richard Davies appearing in a comedy sketch. He made a guest appearance in an episode of Not the Nine O’Clock News where they did a parody of Question Time.

      pps Have you tried playing last night’s goodnight clip with the sound turned down while listening to Fire Brigade by the Move?


  8. Another Saturday with Doctor Who.

    At Panopticon 1993 (possibly the best Doctor Who convention ever) Mary Tamm and Lalla Ward said that The Armageddon Factor was a tedious story to make, they thought it was too long. (Mary Tamm’s favourite was Androids of Tara.) The only other six part story Lalla Ward made was Shada, and at the same convention she said that she was sad that it wasn’t completed as they’d put so much work into it.

    Keys of Marinus was a forerunner of the Key to Time series. If they’d made the Key to Time series during the Hartnell era there would definitely been a purely historical story in there.

    Yesterday’s clip included a profile of Diana Dors’ husband Alan Lake and mentioned his appearance in Doctor Who: Underworld. I have no memories at all of seeing the last two stories from the 1977-78 series of Doctor Who. I wasn’t even aware that Leela had left until The Key to Time series started and Radio Times printed a feature on the new assistant.

    It’s true that Underworld isn’t a very memorable story. It’s supposed to be based on Jason and the Argonauts, but it doesn’t have monsters in it. Whatever people say about Horns of Nimon, the story based on Theseus does feature a monster that looks like the Minotaur. And there was a three week gap between The Sunmakers and Underworld. But I don’t know why I didn’t see these serials. It was on just after Jim’ll Fix It, which I had gone off at that time, and it was on the same evening as the New Adventures of Batman cartoon series which I did see. I don’t see how I could have not known it was on. I don’t know what was on ITV at the time, but I don’t know why I wouldn’t have watched Doctor Who when I had watched and enjoyed the first four stories of that season.


    • Sylvia Sims was also a guest actress in Doctor Who. She played Mrs Pritchard in Ghost Light.

      She also played Tony Hancock’s wife in The Punch and Judy Man.


    • They did have a repeat of Robots of Death on New Year’s Eve which might have given the impression that Doctor Who was taking a break. But it still seems odd that I have no memories of the last ten weeks of season fifteen.


  9. Forty-one years ago Peter Davison’s first series perked up with the third story, Kinda. And likewise a year later his second series perked up with Mawdryn Undead.

    Nicholas Courtney became the first actor to work with the first five Doctors. The series included a montage of clips from earlier programmes (something which got overdone in the early JNT series) with Doctors and monsters from the UNIT stories, including a clip of William Hartnell from The Three Doctors.

    I heard that the story was originally to have featured Ian Chesterton, now teaching in the private sector, but William Russell was unavailable so it was rewritten to feature a career changing Brigadier, and playing havoc with the dating of UNIT stories.

    This was the story that introduced Turlough who was the last male assistant the Doctor would have during the original run.

    But having Doctor Who, The Waltons and Crossroads at the same time was asking for trouble.


  10. If you looked at a Monday in January of February in 1982, then the next two days you would do a Wednesday in 1983, and a Friday in 1984, and get one episode from each of Peter Davison’s three series of Doctor Who.

    39 years ago it was part three of Frontios in which we find something about Turlough’s past. One episode ended with the Doctor believing the Tardis had been destroyed. I told a total lie and said that they were writing out the Tardis and giving the Doctor a new omne because people no longer knew what a police box was.

    One year later it was the first part of Mark of the Rani which was shot at the Ironbridge Museum in Shropshire. (I’ve never been there.)

    Mark of the Rani was the second attempt to introduce a regular villain to Doctor Who. It was a mistake to have had the Master in this story, they didn’t seem to know what to do with him after the first Peter Davison series, and the Rani should have been the main villain.

    They were planning to bring back the Rani the following year in a story called Yellow Fever, the story JNT most regretted not making, which would also have featured the Autons and was to have been made in Singapore. But that story got cancelled when Michael Grade messed about with the series.

    Kate O’Mara played the Rani in only one more proper Doctor Who story, Time and the Rasni, Sylvester McCioy’s first one. And she also appeared in the Children in Need sketch Dimensions in Time.

    Michelle Gomez should have been cast as the Rani. The Missy storyline would have made more sense if she’d been the Rani instead of the Master. (Time Lords changing sex when they regenerate was Steven Moffat’s worst contribution to Doctor Who.) If you watch Kate O’Mara as the Rani you’ll see what I mean.)


  11. Hazel Holt reviewed Doctor Who: Robots of Death. Robots of Death is now regarded as one of the classics. Chris Boucher died last year, and was the at the time of his death the earliest surviving Doctor Who writer, and the last surviving Doctor Who writer of the seventies. It think the earliest surviving Doctor Who writers now are John Flanagan and Andrew McCulloch who wrote Meglos.

    Hazel hot preferred that series of Docyor Who (The Masque of Mandragora, The Hand of Fear, The Deadly Assassin, The Face of Evil, Robots of Death and The Talons of Weng Chiang) to the prebvious one (Terror of the Zygons, Planet of Evil, Pyramids of Mars, The Android Invasion, The Brain of Morbius, and The Seeds of Doom). They were both good series.

    The Mandrells should not be confused wit mandrills which are old world monkeys. They appeared in the 1979 serial Nightmare of Eden. When Doctor Who Magazine was Doctor Whoo Weekly they ran a serries of articles look at Doctor Who Monsters. Usually it was old monsters, but one issue had a feature on the Mandrells. The cover of Doctor Who Weekly usually advertised several feature in the magazine, but this issue juast had “Inside: The Mandrells”.


  12. 58 years ago today. The episode of Doctor Who called Inferno was the fourth part of The Romans and not the Jon Pertwee serial with the Primords.

    In a Doctor Who Magazine interview Dennis Spooner said that The Romans was an expiriment to see how far they could go with comedy in Doctor Who. The Wen Planet was an experiment to see hoe far they could go with being weird.

    According to Doctor Who Weekly after the first series of Doctor Who it was found that viewers preferred the science fiction stories to the historical episodes, and after the French Revolutution serial there wouldn’t be any more purely historical stories of more than four episodes. But in fact after the first series none of the William Hartnell series were more than four episodes long apart from the Dalek serials and The Web Planet.

    And when the BBC wiped the Doctor Who tapes it was the historicals that got it. The second William Hartnell series is the nearest to a complete series from the sixties. The only missing episodes are two episodes from The Crusade (one of only two purely historicals from that series.) The only missing episodes from the first series are Marco Polo and two episode of The Reign of Terror. It was the last William Hartnell series and first Patrick Troughton series that were really badly decimated, and with the exception of The Gunfighters, which exists in its entirety, all the historicals from Thje Myth Makers onward are completely missing. And apparantly The Highlanders was the first series that was wiped, proving my point.


  13. 43 years ago today I saw the beginning of Instant Enlightenment, and then got tired and went to bed as was the way with Play For Today.

    I remember seeing part of another play in the early eighties about some tv or film critics who were invited to see a documentary about the history of human technology called From the Pyramids to the Microchip. But instead they are shown a surreal black and white film featuring themselves (or actors who look just like them, the actors in the film were played by the actors who played the critics).

    The only person who isn’t watching the film is the oldest of the men who falls asleep. In one scene a cook, who looks like the oldest woman in the group, brings the character who looks like the oldest man a birthday cake, and he indicates for her to take it away. The cook looks sad, and the female critic also feels sad.

    When the film ends the critics find that they’re the only people in the viewing room, their host have left the room, and they find that they’re locked in the room, and they can’t wake the man who fell asleep, he’s either passed out or died.

    Does anyone know the name of this play?


  14. For a long time part one of The Web of Fear was the only episode the BBC had in their archives. Was there a message from the Doctor before the episode was broadcast?

    Now only part three is missing. And unfortunately the missing episode is the first one with Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart. There is a good supporting cast including Derek Pollitt as Driver ‘Tobacco Tin’ Evans.

    Apparently this was the last story from the Troughton era to feature the Doctor’s recorder, and the next was the first to feature the sonic screwdriver.

    I remember the edition of Blankety Blank with Jon Pertwee. He described Terry Wogan’s microphone as a half suck licorice lollipop. The Rip Van Winkle question was a hard one. It could have been any tv programme, although I probably would have said Blankety Blank.

    If I’d fallen asleep in 1979 and woke up twenty years later I would be horrified to find that Doctor Who wasn’t still on.


  15. I remember the Radio Times cover with the Three Doctors. I went with my family to see some friends at Christmas and they had the new year edition of Radio Times. I knew that the man in the middle was Doctor Who, but I didn’t know who the other men were. And the oldest daughter explained that they were the actors who played Doctor Who before Jon Pertwee. And I said there was another actor Who played Doctor Who before Jon Pertwee. He was in the film version of Doctor Who.

    Actually Patrick Troughton was the Doctor when I first saw it, and I remember seeing one of the first Jon Pertwee stories and noticing that the Doctor looked different, but I qickly forgot about it, and didn’t realize that one of the actors on the New Year issue of Radio Times was the actor who played the Doctor when I first saw Doctor Who.

    I rewatched The Three Doctors on the fiftieth anniversary of the first programme. One thing that sticks out is that the second and first Doctors don’t appear until towards the end of the first episode. And at the end of part one they get split up, with the third Doctor and Jo going to Omega’s realm, and the second Doctor on Earth with the Brigadier and Sergeant Benton.

    William Hartnell only gets a few minutes on screen in each episode. In part three his only appearance is when he has a conversation with the Time Lords, and that feels as if it was put in just so that he could get a credit in the closing titles.

    The only time the first three Doctors met at the same time was when they did the Radio Times cover and other publicity photographs.

    Richard Franklin was unavailable for The Three Doctors, so his part in the story was rewritten for John Levene, and Sergeant Benton’s role in the story went to Corporal Palmer. In the original version Captain Yates would have gone to Omega’s world with the Brigadier and the Doctors, while Sergeant Benton would have led the attack on the Gel Guards and would have last been seen in the story when he saw UNIT HQ disappear.

    So it was Benton who left Earth once, while Yates never did instead of the other way round. And Sergeant Benton had already met the second Doctor.

    The best scene with someone entering the Tardis for the first time was when Benton goes inside the Tardis in The Three Doctors. When the Doctor asks if he’s going to say that it’s bigger on the inside than it is on the outside Benton replies “Well it is rather obvious. And anyway nothing about you surprise me now, Doctor.”. But that was originally meant to be Captain Yates’ line.


  16. The monster flashback was the best bit of The War Games.

    49 years ago it was the last episode of Invasion of the Dinosaurs. The Doctor tells the Operation Gold Age people to make a better world of the world they’ve got rather than go back to some mythical golden age. Two stories earlier the Doctor did meet some people who were trying to make a better world of the world they’d got when he visited the Nuthutch. I could imagine a rehabilitated Mike Yates joining the Nuthutch.

    The story end with the Doctor trying to persuade Sarah to join him on a trip to the planet Floriana. By the following episode she has agreed to go with him, but they get diverted to the planet Exxilon where they meet the Daleks.

    The Invasion of the Dinosaurs’ claim to fame is that it was the first story to feature the Whomobile. However the Whomobile would only be used once more in Doctor Who, in Planet of the Spiders. I think the Whomobile appeared in more other programmes than it did in Doctor Who. It was in Blue Peter, Billy Smart’s Children’s Circus (a clip of which is included on the DVD of Invasion of the Dinosaurs). Jon Pertwee drove the Whomobile in the wonderful documentary Thirty Years in the Tardis. They superimposed some dinosaurs over the shot, but instead ob BBC dinosaurs they used the then brand new animatronic dinosaurs from the Natural History Museum.

    One of the interesting editions of Forty Minutes featured a man who was a serious home movie maker who used to produce the local newsreel. One of his films was of the local fete which Jon Pertwee opened, in his Doctor Who outfit, and brought the Whomobile with him. (This was in 1975 when he’d actually left Doctor Who and Tom Baker’s first series had been broadcast.)

    The Invasion of the Dinosaurs’ claim to infamy is that part one was the only Doctor episode from the seventies to get wiped, and apparently as a result was one of the few stories not shown abroad. Part one was called The Invasion so as not to give away the appearance of a dinosaur at the end, and it got wiped along with some episodes of the Cybermen story called The Invasion. Of course the BBC shouldn’t have wiped the first UNIT serial. In the early eighties a copy of The Invasion did turn up, but it was in black and white. And when it was first broadcast the majority of viewers saw it in black and white.


  17. TV Tornado ran from 1967 to 1968. It featured comic strip versions of The Man From UNCLE, Bonanza, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Tarzan (Ron Ely version), and a Batman text story. Issue number one gave away a free Batchute. During its run it incorporated Solo, a comic featuring mostly Disney comic strips, and was eventually incorporated into TV-21.

    Issue 59 featured Doctor Who and an Ice Warrior of the cover, and a photo-feature on Doctor Who inside, despite the fact that the Doctor Who comic strip was running in TV Comic at the time.

    The pictures of William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton are the same ones that were used in the star profiles in the first two issues of Doctor Who Weekly. But then a lot of photographs that appeared in the early issue of Doctor Who Weekly were the same ones because there was only a standard set of photographs available.

    The Sensorites were among the monsters who appeared in the Doctor Who trump card game in the late seventies. The Sensorite had a brown beard and wore a red tracksuit, when in fact they had white beards and greyish blue tracksuits. And they weren’t the villains.


    • Furthermore the photographs of William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton used in TV Tornado and the star profiles in the Fantastic First Issue and Smash Second Issue (it was still the seventies) of Doctor Who Weekly were also the same ones printed in Radio Times when they did The Five Faces of Doctor Who. The picture of Jon Pertwee used by Radio Times for The Five Faces of Doctor wasn’t the one used for the star profile of Jon Pertwee in the Thrilling Third Issue of Doctor Whoo Weekly. Doctor Who weekly used a picture of the third Doctor wearing a jewellers’ lens.


  18. Contrary to what Martin Wainwright said Doctor Who wasn’t originally planned to run for just twelve weeks. (The first series ran for 42 weeks.)

    The reason the Daleks didn’t appear much during the Tom Baker era was because Philip Hinchcliffe didn’t like using old monsters. His (and Tom Baker’s) first series featured the Sontarans, the Daleks and the Cybermen because those stories were commissioned by Barry Letts, but he preferred to use new monsters such as the Wirrn, the Zygons, the Krynoid, and the Robots of Death. Graeme Williams produced stories with the Sontarans and the Daleks, but he was more interested in science fiction concepts and the Key to Time season had little room for monsters.

    The only monsters introduced during the Tom Baker era who were featured more than once were Davros and the Zygons, and the latter didn’t reappear until nearly forty years later.

    Forty-six years ago it was the last episode of The Robots of Death. That’s a good one. It was good enough to repeat the following New Year. It was very clever the way the Doctor defeated the main villain by using helium to make his voice higher so that the robots would no longer recognize his voice pattern and stop obeying him. Is doing helium dangerous?

    The Robots of Death were the last classic monsters. Is that a controversial thing to say?


  19. Jack Howarth was an exact contempoary of Arnold Ridley, they were both born in 1896 and died in 1984. Albert Tatlock is mentioned in the Skids’ song TV Stars, the B-side to end of term disco favourite Into the Valley.


  20. TV Mirror was not Britain’s best viewing guide, Radio Times was.

    But yesterday you managed to pick another listing with a tv landmark, the first edition of one of the essential comedy series of the eighties. The pre-credits sketch on the first Spitting Image sets things up for the rest of the series. The title sequence later had sound effects added.

    I remember Nicholas Courtney’s guest appearance on Harry Hill’s programme. Peter Davison was a guest in the first series. Harry Hill’s Channel 4 series was considerably funnier than the later series he did on ITV.


  21. The article about Doctor Who was published during the eighteen months that Doctor Who was off the air. But the BBC had got round to shooting the delayed series, and it had been announced the Bonnie Langford would be joining the show.

    But it’s a rather sexist article because it only mentions the female companions.

    Doctor Who came back in September 1986, but Trial of a Time Lord was my least favourite series of Doctor Who. There isn’t anything especially bad about it, but there’s nothing outstandingly good either. We had to wait eighteen month for a new series, and when it came back it was a shorter series than usual. And there was a sour not afterwards when Colin Baker was fired.

    But then Doctor Who shouldn’t have come off for eighteen months. Doctor Who was a high profile show at least up until the twentieth anniversary. But after it got taken off for eighteen months it didn’t get the high profile back. I went on holiday during the summer of 1989 and met people who didn’t know Doctor Who was still on, not that they would have watched it if they had known. And one of them was a media studies teacher.

    The sub-heading “Survival” seems oddly prescient.


  22. Patrick Troughton was in the 1950 Disney film version of Treasure Island as well as the 1977 Sunday serial. (Walt Disney moving onto live action films was career move lunacy.)

    My mum preferred Alfred Burk’e portrayal of Long John Silver to Robert Newton whio she thought was too hammy (although a lot of people think he was hammy because they’re actually remembering Tony Hancock’s impression of Robert Newton). She thought Ashley Knight (later Metal Mickey’s minder) was more believable as Jim Hawkins than Bobby Driscoll who she thought was too pretty.

    They’re quite old pirates. Alfred Burke was 59 at the time, Patrick Troughton was 57, Talfryn Thomas was 55.


  23. Today’s good morning picture is obviously from Destiny of the Daleks because Romana is wearing the feminine version of the Doctor’s outfit. Lalla Ward’s Romana never wore the same outfit twice. Even Mary Tamm wore a different outfit in each serial.

    The majority of Doctor Who cartoonists draw Romana in the Destiny of the Daleks outfit. I went to a Doctor Who convention where two girls dressed as the two Romanas, one wore the long white dress from The Ribos Operation, and the other wore the schoolgirl outfit from City of Death.

    The Sea Devils is a good one. BBC2 showed it in 1992 as part of their Doctor Who retrospective season. (It’s a shame you don’t show cuttings of tv listings from the nineties.)

    Some people say that the scene with the Master watching The Clangers proves that the UNIT stories were set in the present rather than the immediate future, but the BBC were still repeating The Clangers in the late seventies. What does date the episode is when the Master asks for a televsion and adds “Colour of course.”

    A lot of people know that The Sea Devils features a clip of The Clangers, but not so many people know that the prison governor who catches the Master watching The Clangers was played by Clive Morton who played the prison governor in Kind Hearts and Coronets. Clive Morton and Barry Letts had worked together before when they appeared in Scott of the Antarctic, starring John Mills. Clie Morton played the expedition’s film cameraman Herbert Ponting, and I can definitely recommend Herbert Ponting’s documentary The Great White Silence.


  24. One of my friends had used to have the poster from the Doctor Who Monster Book on his bedroom wall.

    Both editions of The Making of Doctor Who. The first was published by Piccolo in 1872, the second by Target in 1976. Rather bizarrely the episode guide went up to The Sea Devils, half way through the third Jon Pertwee series. The summary of the Doctor’s adventures for the William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton eras took the form of the Doctor’s defence at his trial at the end of The War Games, and for the Pertwee era it was the Brigadier’s reports of the UNIT stories and Time Lords’ archives for the Doctor’s missions to other planets.

    The episode guide in the second edition, which went up to The Hand of Fear, took a more conventional approach. The photographs of William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton in the 1976 edition were the same stock photos used in TV Tornado and the photo-files in Doctor Who Weekly. Photographs in the 1972 edition included some Sensorites.

    The edition of Z Cars with Patrick Troughton would have featured the secon version of the thme tune.

    I remember Patrick Troughton’s guest appearance in The Goodies, and episode called The Baddies, my mum told me that Doctor Van Petal was Doctor Who, but I thought it was Jon Pertwee in disguise. In the early series of The Goodies they did spoof ad breaks, and the second half of The Baddies Doctor Van Petal locked the Goodies up in a dungeon, and to show they were there a long time a caption appeared on screen saying “End of Part Two”, followed by captions saying “Part Three”, “End of Part Three” and “Part Four”, and they escaped in part four.

    Jon Pertwee did appear in Doctor Who in Wacky Wales. They were the only two Doctors who appeared in The Goodies, but Tom Baker would have been a great guest.


  25. Jam,es Towler reviewed Mind of Evil. In Terror of the Autons the Autons played second fiddle to the new regular villain, and in Mind of Evil the Master really came into his own. This is the only story where the Master smokes. William Marlowe (who later appeared in Revenge of the Cybermen) married Roger Delgado’s widow. He wasn’t felated to Fernanda Marlow who played Corpporal Carol Bell in Mind of Evil and Claws of Axos. She was one of the few UNIT personnel to appear in more than one story (and was in some of the Doctor Who novels).

    The fishing episode of Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads features Carole Ann Ford as Valerie the barmaid.

    Ray Lonnen is definitely wearing Jon Pertwee’s cast offs, and Ronald Fraser is wearing Patrick Troughton’s. Perhaps they were at a Doctor Who convention.

    33 years ago today I would have watched Mastermind and Ripping Yarns: Roger of the Raj. When I was living with my parents they tended to switch the tv off or over whe Mastermind came on but I got hooked on it when I started living on my own.

    Dear John was awful. Some comedy series could take a sad situation and make it funny, but Dear John failed abysmally.

    Casino Royale is too long.

    The Sunday Mirror tv listings page looks more upmarket.


  26. The picture of Frankie Howard with Paul McCartney and Wendy Richard was a still from Help. Frankie Howerd’s scene was cut from the film and I believe the footage was destroyed.

    One of the other actors in the Parkinson clip was Brian Forbes. I don’t know who the man with the beard was.

    Is there any chance of a complete list of Buddy star profiles?


  27. George C Cooper’s guest appearance in Steptoe and Son was broadcast the day before his 47th birthday. It would have been nice to have had a picture of him from Doctor Who: The Smugglers. It would be even nicer if The Smugglers existed.

    If you’d carried on doing the tv listings from the nineties then yesterday yo would have printed the listings for Friday the 6th of March 1992 which included a repeat of part one of Doctor Who and the Sea Devils. But instead we got a clip today from The Silurians. It was a bit too topical. Peter Mi;les went on to play Nyder in Genesis of the Daleks.

    The shot of the Doctor driving Bessie for the first time on screen in part one of The Silurians feels like the Jon Pertwee era really kicking in. I think I prefer the Silurian design from Warriors of the Deep to the original, but I didn’t like the Samauri look of the Sea Devils in the eighties story, and much preferred the original. I didn’t like the design of the Silurians from the Matt Smioth erea.

    Was Norman Hartnell any relation to William Hartnell.


  28. The picture of Bruce Forsyth as a ghost reminds me of a joke I’ve been meaning to post on this website for some time.

    Jackanory used to run a competition each year where they’d get viewers to send in their own poems and stories. One year one of the themes was science fiction. One viewer wrote a story where a strange alien creature suddenly appeared in her bedroom, and after a short conversation it just as quickly disappeared again. So she went to the telephone and asked to be put through to Spike Milligan.

    Another story was about a library where people could borrow famous people from history. The narrator was studying English Literature and decided to borrow Godfrey Chaucer. All sorts of funny things happened, for example they went to the cinema sand Godrfrey Chaucer thought the people on screen were real, and he thought his ice cream cornet was a trumpet and tried to blow it and the ice cream landed on the head of a bald man in the stalls below, so they got thrown out of the cinema. And when the narrator took him back to the library he was overdue and she had to pay a fine.

    The joke I’m going to tell is about the library. Another literature student was reading Macbeth, but wanted to find out about the real Macbeth, so he went to the library of historical characters. He went to the section on Scottish kings and looked in one of the rooms, and he saw a Scottish king stading on one leg with the other leg in front of him, and his hands balled into fists, one pointed towards his forehead and the other behind his back. And he was saying “Nice to see you, to see you nice!”. And the student said “You’re not Macbeth.”, and the king replied “No, I’m Robert the Bruce.”.


  29. Englebert Humpadink or On the Buses. Eglelbert because the Goodies had a slot on it.

    That’s a classic photo of Carole Ann Ford. When the article was published the latest Doctor Who serial was Marco Polo.


  30. The cartoonist Bill Tidy has died.

    Apparently his comic strip The Fosdyke Saga was adapted for tv in the late seventies.

    His main contribution to television were appearing as a contestant on the now largely forgotten Quick on the Draw, and as a panelist on Blankety Blank.


  31. 48 years ago it was part two of my favourite Doctor Who story Genesis of the Daleks. It’s one of the three Doctor Who stories I’ve watched most often, along with An Unearthly Child and The Five Doctors.

    It was also one of the most repeated serials on tv. I think they showed an omnibus version the following Christmas. It was one of the serials shown in the summer of 1982 as part of Doctor Who and the Monsters, although this was a heavily edited version, the six part serial was cut down to the equivalent of four parts. It was shown in it’s entirety on BBC2 in early 1993 as part of a season of Doctor Who serial featuring all of the first seven Doctors. The last time it was shown on BBC Television was on BBC2 in early 2000.

    (They also showed a clip of Doctor Who in the Saturday morning children’s quiz show Play It Again. (Play It Again was a bit like Screen Test but with clips of tv shows instead of films.))


  32. There’s an old tv trivia question “Who was Mel Smith’s other comedy partner?”.

    The answer was Bob Goody, who died earlier this month aged 71.

    Mel Smith and Bob Goody were comedy partner’s long before Mel Smith’s long running double act with Griff Rhys Jones. They first met at drama school. In 1980, around the same time as the third series of Not the Nine O’Clock News, they had a children’s series on ITV called Smith and Goody which was supposed to be about books, but was really a series of comedy sketches. The Christmas special had nothing to do with books. One of his Smith and Goody characters was a yobbish schoolboy called Malcolm who Mel was trying to introduce to the pleasures of reading.

    Only one series of Smith and Goody was made. After that Bob Goody was a presenter on Thames Television’s children’s magazine programme Ace Reports. Partway through the last edition of Ace Reports the programme got hijacked by Jim Sweeny and Steve Steen as the presenters of the pirate tv show CBTV.

    Bobb Goody’s other tv acting roles included Danny the caretaker in the underrated Crime Traveller.


  33. Today’s archive tv listing was another tv landmark, but also a sore point.

    The opening shot of Logopolis was a policeman outside a police box, a deliberate echo of the first shot of An Unearthly Child. And of course An Unearthly Child and Logopolis were the first and last stories in The Five Faces of Doctor Who.

    The end of the Tom Baker era was a good natural break for the BBC to do a season of vintage repeats, and for Jean-Mar L’Officier to write his Doctor Who episode guide.

    Part four of Logopolis included flashbacks from previous stories, something that got overdone later in the JNT era.

    But it was a sore point because when Tom Baker’s last episode was first broadcast I missed it because I was on a field trip as part of my A-level biology course, and then I failed my exams at the end because the stupid school couldn’t teach A-levels.

    One evening while I was doing my homework my brother called me from downstairs because Ask Aspel showed the regeneration. And of course I saw the whole programme when it was repeated in The Five Faces of Doctor Who. But I also missed the first parts of Carnival of Monsters and The Three Doctors because the biology class visited London Zoo (interesting) and went to see an electron microscope (boring). The school has a lot to answer for.

    One time Doctor Who Magazine editor printed a list of Doctor Who episodes that he’d missed for various reasons. The crappiest reason he had for missing Doctor Who was one Saturday when his parent wouldn’t let him watch it because he wouldn’t eat his broad beans at lunch time. (Needless to say he still hates broad beans.)

    The crappiest reason I had for missing an episode of Doctor Who was when I missed Tom Baker’s last episode when I was on that stupid field trip.

    The crappiest reason anyone had for missing Doctor Who was all those children who missed the Sylvester McCoy series because their parents watched Coronation Street.


  34. A year and a day after Tom Baker’s last episode of Doctor Who was first broadcast it was the first episode of the last serial of Peter Davison’s first series. (If you picked a listing for a Saturday in January of February 1981 then the next four days would be a Monday in 1982, a Wednesday in 1983, and a Friday in 1984 and all four Days would have Doctor Who, an episode from Tom Baker’s last series and an episode from each of the Peter Davison series.)

    Unfortunately Time Flight was, by a long way, my least favourite story from one of my favourite series. It was an end of season, end of budget serial.

    In one of the first scenes the Doctor, Tegan and Nyssa are talking about the death of Adric. This scene is included In the novelisation of Time Flight, but it should have been the epilogue to Earthshock. Adric makes a (rather superfluous) cameo appearance. This was either for contractual reasons so that he appeared in every story in the series, or so that he would get a credit in Radio Times so as mot to spoiler the end of Earthshock.

    Most of the stories in the first Peter Davison series made references to the previous story (something which fell by the wayside during the eighties), so it was nice to have Tegan mention their visit to Castrovalva.

    The best thing about this serial was the appearance of the Master in the second or third cliffhanger, which surprised me at the time, but it shouldn’t have done. The Masterreturned at the end of the previous series, the Doctor saw him off in the first serial of the new series, so it was right that he should turn up at the end. (Alythough I felt they didn’t know what to do with the Master after the first Peter Davison series.)

    Mike Read used to talk about Doctor Who on his Radio One Breakfast Show. After the last episode of Time Flight one listener wrote and said Doctor Who was getting really horrible lately. First of all Adric got killed, and then Tegan got left behind. Although the latter was a plot device to give Tegan a different costume and hairstyle.

    It was Mike Harding’s eyes.


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