John Connors has continued to publish my articles on Doctor Who, the Doctor and British identities at his Time Lines blog. Looking at them now, I’d give myself some notes. There are a lot of ideas there which I might get round to untangling at some point, and others where my thoughts ran ahead of my writing. One sentence in part three cries out for a mention of Love for Lydia (LWT for ITV, 1977; in which Peter Davison appeared) and how its content anticipates in a middle-class register the upper-class concerns of the more lavish literary adaptation that was Brideshead Revisited (Granada for ITV, 1981; which did not feature Peter Davison). The Pallisers (BBC, 1974), though predating both, offers a connection through the cricketing obsession grafted by screenwriter Simon Raven onto Anthony Andrews’s Lord Silverbridge, arguably a forebear both of Andrews’s Sebastian Flyte and Peter Davison’s Doctor. The Pallisers was a formative influence on 1980s Doctor Who producer John Nathan-Turner, who was given a field promotion to production unit manager during its dispute-stricken production and played a significant role in ensuring it reached screens.
Don’t Shoot – He’s British! part two looks at the tensions in the layering of identities which shaped the personas of the third and fourth Doctors. Don’t Shoot – He’s British! part three moves on to examine the development of the fifth and sixth Doctors and their universe, as represented by decisions on story, casting and costume and the channelling of long-current but overplayed cultural anxieties. There will be more.
Whatever next week’s Viking age Doctor Who episode is like, it won’t be Woden’s Warriors! I don’t think I’ve ever used the reblog facility on WordPress before, but it seemed the easiest way of referring readers to this post and this Doctor Who comic strip, not from Mighty TV Comic as the original post says but from the earlier TV Comic Annual 1976, published in 1975. The artist is John M. Burns. who was illustrating The Tomorrow People and then Space 1999 for Look-In at around the same time, I think. Doctor Who was not his thing, but his likenesses of Tom Baker and Elisabeth Sladen are idiosyncratic at least, I am old enough to say that I enjoyed reading the story when it was first published, though the disparaging and sexist way the Doctor talks to Sarah goes well beyond anything she suffered in the television series. Follow the link to the original post below for links to larger images.