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SCIFINOW ISSUE 92 (MAY 2014)

The current issue of ScifiNow contains an 8 page feature on DOOMWATCH written by Charles Norton. The principal production designer Ian Watson (one of the designers of the original DOOMWATCH office), original series writer Don Shaw and Ian McDonald (Winter Angel) and Actor John Nolan (Geoff Hardcastle in Season 2) all feature with a potted history of the original three seasons, Film and Channel 5's 1999 TV Movie and the erm... controversy surrounding the still unbroadcast episode Sex and Violence. What would Sir Cliff Richard make of it? Anyone want to ask him?

THE QUEST FOR PEDLER - Book News Update

Doomwatch fans will no doubt be excited by the news of Michael Seely's  forthcoming 2014 biography, The Quest for Pedler: The Life and Ideas of Dr. Kit Pedler.
Michael has also unearthed something previously unseen since 1966: a preview of the top sheet can be viewed on MIWK's Facebook page... Kit Pedler & Gerry Davis’ original draft script for the Doctor Who story The Tenth Planet, unusual because it predates the decision to write out actor William Hartnell. And that’s not all he’s found...

“I found this script and two more from The Moonbase (known then as The Return of the Cybermen) among a very large collection of Kit's papers which one of his children had kept
in their attic. As I looked through it, I realised it was the first draft Gerry Davis prepared when Kit fell ill in June 1966.“ says Michael Seely.
“The structure is more or less the same, though a lot of the dialogue is different. Some things were cut, especially involving the Cybermen. For example, the Cybermen planned to convert Polly and the Doctor into Cybermen towards the end of the story, and kept them prisoner in what they described as a waiting room. The most eye catching difference is what didn't happen at the end of the episode.“

The relevance of this early draft, and the date it was prepared goes some way to illustrating the hasty nature of Hartnell’s departure: “Gerry Davis and Innes Lloyd were always very diplomatic and tactful in their interviews. Both died in 1991, long before 'warts and all' interviews became the norm. We know that William Hartnell was being persuaded to give up the role he loved over the summer of 1966, and that they were sounding out replacements. He only decided to leave in the middle of July, the month after this draft was written.”

Michael Seely is no stranger to the work of Dr Kit Pedler, he has previously written two books (‘Prophets of Doom’ and ‘Deadly Dangerous Tomorrow’ – both available from Miwk Publishing) on the subject of Doomwatch and there’s something here for Doomwatch fans too: “Doomwatch fans will be interested to learn that over five original story lines were among Kit's papers, including several that did not get made. One of these was responsible for the BBC removing Kit's influence over the programme he and Gerry created as a warning over unchecked science and technology. There were a couple of radio plays too, which had
been known about but remained a bit of a mystery since they were not made. Unfinished books and short stories, and proposals for television series. Environmentalists, though Kit did not consider himself to be one, and students of the 1970s environmental movement, will be pleased to learn that a lot of his writings, lectures and scripts for TV and radio, also exist within this collection.”

Michael’s biography of Kit Pedler will be released in early 2014 by Miwk Publishing. Authorised by his family and produced with their assistance, the book will tell the full story of Dr C.M.H. Pedler, MB. BS., Ph.D, M.C. Path. A research scientist well known to Doctor Who fans as the co-creator of the Cybermen, but in reality a leading activist and campaigner for more sociably responsible and sustainable scientific research and understanding. Pedler’s role in Doctor Who is also clarified: “He was not a scientific advisor. Kit wasn't there to throw in the science, or vet scripts for their accuracy. He was there to give plausible science fiction ideas, which Lloyd and Davis had no clue about.
 “He argued that we were conditioned to accept whatever science had to offer us as automatically a good thing, and not to enquire deeper.  He used to describe himself as a 'defrocked scientist.' His words are still true today.”

The Tenth Planet will be released on 18th November 2013. It's just a real shame that it is almost certainly too late for this new find to be included.

DOOMWATCH ORIGINAL SCRIPT FOR SALE

The author's copy of the classic season one DOOMWATCH episode "Re-Entry Forbidden" written by Don Shaw has now been listed for sale on auction site ebay. The script has been listed for 10 days from today. Bidding starts at £149. Click here to see the listing.
Happy bidding!

DOOMWATCH Fan Produced audio episode reconstruction completed

It's been a long time in production but the fan produced DOOMWATCH episode reconstruction of Season 1 finale Survival Code is finally here. FREE to download and listen to. A huge thanks to all involved in it's production. For more information on it's production visit Bandril Productions

DOOMWATCH DVD COMPETITION

CSO, The Cult Television Fanzine is currently running a competition on Facebook. Just search for "CSO - The Cult TV Fanzine" and "Like" their page to be in with a chance of winning one of three available DVD copies of the Channel 5 1999 film DOOMWATCH - Winter Angel. Competition winners will be announced on 30th March 2013. There is also a website available showing page spreads and news and information here

A Date With Doctor Ridge


"A Date With Doctor Ridge" is a feature on Simon Oates from "Love Affair" Magazine, published 13th May 1972 - priced 8p. As a treat we purchased this magazine, just for your reading pleasure!

Colette O'Hare meets Simon Oates, the dish from ‘Doomwatch'…

SIMON OATES, the man from 'Doomwatch', is an affable, easy-going guy. And like Dr. John Ridge, the television character he plays in the series, due to return soon, he has a preference for broderie Anglaise shirts and brightly coloured neck scarfs-in his case, made human by the addition of a suede waistcoat which looked, frankly, niffy.
With a nice eye for detail, though, he was intrigued by the man, sitting near the lady whose perfume was making his left eye sting, who was wearing a shirt with a very strange collar, at least six or seven inches deep. “Too much the collar,” he said, shaking his head, "much too much the collar."
The man was making copious notes about something, and Mr. Oates was concerned that he might be copying his jokes down.
But, despite the funnies, he seemed a little down-cast, perhaps as a result of having just returned to London where he lives, after three months in a country retreat.
“I wonder if the idea that London is the only place to be, is really a myth. I suppose it is the centre of all that's happening, but on the other hand you do get a bit fed-up with tearing about all over the place. For instance, I eat out a lot. There are about four restaurants I'm really fond of and I tend to stick to them. I could probably find four decent restaurants in an average small town-without all the hustle of London.
“I really enjoyed being in the country. I had a small cottage loaned to me by a friend. There was no television or telephone. If anyone wanted to contact me they had to send a runner across the fields with a message in a cleft stick.
 “But as soon as you get back to London, the phone starts ringing, and that's it, what
actor can resist answering the telephone, I ask you?"
 Ordering a drink, and co-incidentally making the barmaid's day, he said, almost sadly, "There you are, I can’t even order a drink without turning it into a five minute cabaret spot." As it happened, he was due to do a cabaret show that evening.
 He told a few more jokes by way of a demonstration.
“Now you can say Simon Oates did nothing but tell rude stories."
“I remember interviewing you once before," I told him, "and you did nothing but tell rude stories then, too.”
“Did I?'' he said. "Oh well, you probably started it."
I probably did.
When he is not Doomwatching, or doing cabaret, (he sings too, folks), he has an interest in a agency for dancers.
I like the theatre,” he said, but it's hardly ever worth doing financially, unless it's a very long run-and that means you're very tied. It's the same with a long running television series like 'Doomwatch'. That's why in the new series I'm not in every episode.”
He hadn't seen the completed ‘Doomwatch' film-he just did his bit and departed.
Divorced, he has a twelve-year-old daughter, Beverley.
I think my attitude to womenhas become rather cynical, which is a pity, because basically I'm a hopeless romantic. In my heart I still think that somewhere, maybe in the jungles of Equador, there's the right woman for me. When we meet, bells will start ringing, etc. I keep hoping it will happen, but of course it never does, and, let's face it, it probably never will. I don't have affairs, I'd like to think they were affairs, but they aren't really, more like incidents. They never end badly, they just end. I mean, I don't beat women up, I don't ever lose my temper really-it's just that I can't honestly say that I've ever known a woman who I'd really mind too much if I never saw her again-except maybe my daughter-I think I'd do myself in if anything happened to her.
The trouble is, I'm quite happy as I am, but I have this horrible nagging suspicion that maybe I shouldn't be-that maybe it all ought to be a little more-I don’t know-difficult."
An ex-plumber's mate from Camden Town, "anywhere's got to be an improvement after that," his real name, he confides, is Arthur. "But it wasn't quite the image I was after.” (I still don't know whether to believe him.) He doesn't think his pride would allow him to return to plumbing now.
But if, for some reason, I had to give up acting, I wouldn't mind going into P.R. or something like that. I think I'd probably do quite well in P.R., don't you?"
I said that I did, too.
I think that maybe he could even be bottled and sold at nine guineas an ounce. Agreed, girls?

Kit Pedler on Car Pollution

FLASH ANIMATOR WANTED

A complete, fan produced full cast audio soundtrack has been created for the missing Season 1 DOOMWATCH story "Survival Code" and we are looking to recreate the episode using Flash Animation. If you or anyone you know can help us out with this project. Please email here for more details. Thank you.

DOOMWATCH THE DEVIL'S SWEETS ORIGINAL SCRIPT BY DON SHAW FOR SALE

To the left is the top sheet of an original DOOMWATCH script for sale by the author on auction site ebay. The script for the season 1 story, THE DEVIL'S SWEETS is written by Don Shaw and is also signed by the author who is selling it for a starting price of £149. On top of that, the author will embellish the script "To (Insert), Thanks for being a fan -". The auction end on 26-March 2013 at 23:12:31 GMT.
If you'd like to bid on this unique piece of DOOMWATCH history, you can do so by following this link

CSO Fanzine - Issue 1

A brand new Cult TV Fanzine produced by the makers of the DOOMWATCH Fanzine is now available. CSO - Issue 1 contains, amongst other fascinating articles a 3 page account by DOOMWATCH fan Robert Lia, about how he discovered the TV series DOOMWATCH and how he was lucky enough to be involved in producing camera copies of VHS tapes for Gerry Davis. If you'd like a copy of this full colour publication, please check out the website at www.csofanzine.blogspot.com for more information