UPDATED WITH 50th ANNIVERSARY TRAILER!! The Friday Docback Takes On 'The Enemy of the World'!! The Newly Recovered DOCTOR WHO Story #40, Lovely ADVENTURE IN SPACE AND TIME Images, 50th Anniversary Stuff, And More!!
UPDATE2:35 PM CST USA FRIDAY 19 OCTOBER 2013
Here's the new trailer commemorating DOCTOR WHO's 50th Anniversary and the coming of Day of the Doctor. VERY nice...
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UPDATE 7:50 PM CST USA FRIDAY 18 OCTOBER 2013
BBC has announced that a new reel celebrating DOCTOR WHO’s 50th Anniversary will debut tomorrow (Saturday October 19) night at approximately 8:30 UK time. BBC is quick to point out that the trailer will not feature material from Day of the Doctor (the upcoming Matt Smith/David Tennant/John Hurt megasode), to which...at this point...I can only ask “What the fuck?” and grow a tad suspicious. More details HERE.
Here’s some official and lovely new artwork newly issued for the 50th as well...
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...with a quick look at Enemy of the World, a six part Troughton-era DOCTOR WHO serial originally transmitted December 1967-January 1968. This episode was long presumed lost but was recently recovered and released for the world to behold (details HERE). Is it all we’d hoped it would be? More below. But first...
BY THE WAY, THIS TWITTER ACCOUNT IS FAKE!!
Not the Moff. 4 sure.
NEW IMAGES FROM THE ADVENTURE IN SPACE AND TIME DOCUDRAMA
David Bradley as William Hartnell/The First Doctor...
Brian Cox as Sydney Newman - the man who started DOCTOR WHO...
(l-r) Jemma Powell as Jacqueline Hill and Jamie Glover as William Russell - companions Barbara and Ian to The First Doctor...
(l-r) Sacha Dhawan and Jessica Raine as Waris Hussein and Verity Lambert. The geniuses who made WHO happen. I already had a sizable crush on Verity Lambert - seeing Raine in this role has now sent me over a giddy edge...
(l-r) Bradley and Claudia Grant as Carole Anne Ford (The First Doctor's granddaughter in the early years of the show). The 'real' Carole Anne Ford appears in the docudrama as well...
AN ADVENTURE IN SPACE AND TIME will transmit this November.
DOCTOR WHO: The Day of the Doctor THEATRICAL 3D SCREENINGS
Theaters showing the DOCTOR WHO 50th Anniversary Special (The Day of the Doctor) have been announced in Australia and New Zealand. Look for U.K. and North American announcements soon.
You can find the Australian/NZ list HERE.
NEW IMAGES FROM The Day of the Doctor 50th Anniversary Megashow
Earlier this week, a BBC press burst brought is a few stills from The Day of the Doctor, the show’s long-awaited, much-anticipated plus-sized episode which transmits November 23 (the show’s actual 50th anniversary).
Rejoice for what we now behold be EMBIGGENABLE!
THE ENEMY OF THE WORLD
It’s hard not to be impacted by Enemy of the World’s unlikely recovery and release when assessing how ‘good’ it actually is. What appears herein, though, it my best effort to remain level-headed and objective.
In terms of said restoration and release? STUNNING work by the restoration team - Enemy looked as fine as one could possibly expect it to, and mega-kudos to releasing EotW and the also-recovered Web of Fear on a streaming platform, accessible to many, months ahed of its DVD issuance. While I suspect this consideration was principally driven by the time considerations and limitations of DVD production (my guess is BBC wanted to exploit DOCTOR WHO’s 50th Anniversary and the DVDs might not have been ready ahead of the Anniversary - thus digital became the best option), making this easily, affordably, and instantly available to folks in multiple countries concurrently is wise and respectful and a practice I hope DW continues moving forward.
YES, it’s beyond amazing to be seeing Enemy of the World after all these years - amazing tov be seeing it at all considering the circumstances at hand. Did the episode live up to the mythos which rose around it in its absence? Unevenly.
An exceptionally strong opening featuring an intriguing set-up and no small portion of action (helicopters, hovercraft, crane shots) is quickly hamstrung by...well...not much happening. There’s a lot of sitting around and talking, a lot of discussion regarding the pros and cons of life in the service of Salamander (Patrick Troughton playing to Doctor’s look-alike). The most common criticism I level at episodes of this era is that they are over-extended - i.e. fun ideas which are stretched to fill up too much time. This nitpick applies here. Two of Enemy of the World’s six episodes could easily have been jetisoned, leaving us with a tightly structured tale which would’ve better played to the immediacy of matters at hand. As is, though, there’s a great deal of sag to wade through. Ultimately, though, Enemy does regain its footing - and has some un-predicted moves and turns which pull us to our feet again and wake us up.
For much of it's running time, Enemy of the World is more of a political thriller than a DOCTOR WHO episode - aggravatingly so at times. While there’s some excellent inner-conflict shown by the Doctor regarding the “is he/isn’t he?” nature of alter-ego Salamander’s potential villainy, the full WHOness of this affair isn’;t snapped back into place until the introduction of a blessedly kitschy geological disturbance generator. Whose existence, of course, proves to be nothing btut bad news for the rest of the story.
Acting is all over the place. Colin Douglas as Donald Bruce (Salamamder's intimidating and officious security chief) and Milton Johns (as Benik,the dopelganger'a affected lackey) bare often over the top and stagey in their presentation… although female guest characters like Astrid (the rather hot Mary Peach) and Fariah (the also hot Carmen Munroe) find the spirit and vibe of proceedings much more efficiently, while also providing some extremely agreeable eye candy.
Troughton's performance as Salamander is a bizarre mix of Peter Lorre, Charlie Chaplin, and Mel Brooks, but he looks like he's having a lot of fun…and is effective within the AUSTIN POWERSy context of this tale. It's intriguing to see such a capable actor in such a radically different context, playing opposite himself and his regular supporting cast.
An interesting finale essentially resolves one major story arc by inferring its probable outcome rather than illustrating it fully (specifically - the plight of some folk possibly trapped in a ‘sploded mountain). It’ a brazen narrative choice I suspect masy’ve bene driven by economy rather than storytelling, and Enemy’s brief and nutty final sequence leads directly into The Web of Fear...another recently recovered vintage WHO episode we’ll look at next week.
Imperfect and sometimes frustrating in its dawdle, Enemy of the World ultimately emerges as a fun if bumpy ‘classic’ DOCTOR WHO experience. Yet for all of its warts, it’s a joy to have it back. Here’s to many more...
Enemy of the World is available for downloa via iTunes.
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