This Week in Doctor WhoThis Week in Doctor Who

This Week in Doctor Who: Print Archive

Friday 5th November 1999

By Benjamin F. Elliott
A wild bundle of stuff this week. Must be something about the year 2000 countdown that's making the Doctor Who TV universe move faster.
The Wolves Of Fenric are reporting that the BBC has asked all the surviving actors who played the Doctor to come back for a new episode to premiere as part of the year 2000 coverage on December 31st. Apparently, they have all signed on to the project. No further information was known as of 7AM EST Friday. The Wolves Of Fenric are located at . They are usually very reliable with their information, and they are one of the sites that carries this column. [Alliance editor's note: we have neither received confirmation of this nor have any of our usual sources closely connected with the BBC, so please take this at the moment with a grain of salt.]
Just after last week's column went out around the world, confirmation came in concerning the return of Doctor Who to Terrestial Television in the UK. BBC2 has decided to air 1 25 minute episode of Doctor Who every Tuesday at 6PM, as part of its "cult/overseas" programming. Doctor Who replaces The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air in the slot on November 16, beginning with the first 2 episodes of Spearhead From Space (the only week that 2 Who episodes will air). BBC2 plans to run through the series in original broadcast order for as long as the ratings justify it. The Ambassadors of Death and The Mind of Evil will not air as they are mostly Black & White. If Doctor Who can get 2 million viewers in the slot, the BBC will be satisfied. If it can get 3 million, the BBC will be happy. If it can get 4 million, the BBC will be very happy.

The Tuesday 6PM slot could be a very painful spot to be in. Apparently, sports games often go overtime on Tuesday, particularly a game called Snooker. Also, the BBC variations (particularly BBC2 Scotland and BBC2 Wales) are known for airing local specials in this spot instead of the network programme. It would not be much of a surprise if some regions either skipped episodes altogether, or just fell some weeks behind the other regions. At least the BBC2 regions inside England never pre-empt the network programming at that hour.

And no, I haven't forgotten the big Doctor Who night on BBC2 that is scheduled to air on Saturday the 13th. (Hopefully without regional variations.)
The Top 10 Doctor Who Stories In Australia, as chosen by UKTV viewers:
10 The Robots of Death
9 City of Death
8 Planet of the Spiders
7 Earthshock
6 The Talons of Weng-Chiang
5 Remembrance of the Daleks
4) Pyramids of Mars
3) ...
Last week the column reported that KTEH in San Jose, CA had restored their copy of the episodic prints of The Horns of Nimon using modern equipment and the movie version. (Why couldn't the syndicator have spent a few minutes some years back to make certain that they kept complete versions of the later Tom Baker stories, instead of the versions that were edited down for commercial television?) The now-complete version of the story did air Sunday night, although a translator serving the Monterrey Peninsula committed suicide during Space Island One earlier that night, so some KTEH viewers will not see it until the story cycles around again in 2 to 3 years. Ken Patterson at KTEH has now restored the episodic versions of Meglos and Full Circle, scheduled to air on November 14th and 21st, respectively. (The Leisure Hive's prints were complete, and not in need of work.) Ken plans to continue his work on these stories when he has time. These restored episodic versions will probably not air anywhere except KTEH.
KBTC/KCKA Tacoma/Centralia, WA has resumed their late night rerun of their Doctor Who episodes. The time is unstable, moving from week to week, but it is back for the time being most weeks.
Apologies to those in North Dakota and nearby areas. Praire Public Television actually aired The Hand Of Fear ep 1 last week, not The Ark In Space ep 1. I'm still unsure why they reran Robot in the first place, since it caused this confusion, but oh well.
MPBC Maine has not made it official, but I believe we can now assume that the Doctor is completely gone from their schedule. He was already gone from the November lineup, and in December MPBC will begin airing 2 episodes of Red Dwarf each Saturday, the 2nd one in the Doctor's old slot.
Additions and corrections are welcome at . And now, the listings:

UK Gold
Late Fri 12:50-2:55AM GMT The Gunfighters movie
Sun 9-10:55AM GMT Castrovalva movie
Sun 10:55AM-1PM GMT Four To Doomsday movie

UK Gold's last week as the exclusive UK home of weekly Doctor Who. On the Friday night Black & White, the 1st Doctor and company find themselves in an alternate realm where Americans sound like Australians. It's the old west, it's a comedy, it's a musical, and at 12:50 in the morning, it will be utterly confusing. Rewatch it later on the VCR recording you'll make so you can enjoy the fun. On Sunday, the a double feature of Peter Davison. First, the Doctor's regeneration is very fragile, and he retreats into the Zero Room of the TARDIS to recover, just as the TARDIS is sent careening towards destruction! Later, the TARDIS lands on a spaceship inhabited by '3 billion and 3 frogs'.

UK Gold Classics
Sun 6-7:55PM GMT Castrovalva movie
Sun 7:55-10PM GMT Four To Doomsday movie

Another chance to see the first two adventures of the man who tried to replace Tom Baker

ยป the following edition reported that the stories were Four To Doomsday and Kinda due to a tape mix-up..
Fri 6:31PM GMT Doctor Who And The Silurians ? (actually episode 7, Ambassadors 1)
Next Fri 6:31PM GMT 'Doctor Who and the Silurians' ?
BBC Prime
Late Fri 1AM CET (Not Africa) Destiny of the Daleks ep 3 of 4
Sat 5PM, Sun 11:30AM, Mon 11:35AM CET/CAT Destiny of the Daleks ep 4 of 4

It turns out that the Movellans aren't any better than the Daleks. Quite a feat, come to think about it.
Sat 1PM, Sun 2+7AM AEDT Remembrance of the Daleks (#5 story) all 4 eps
Sat 3PM, Sun 4+9AM AEDT Pyramids of Mars (#4 story) all 4 eps
Mon-Thu 11:30PM AEDT '' (#3 story) eps 1 - 4 of 4 (confirmed as The Tomb of the Cybermen)
Fri 11:30PM AEDT '' (#2 story) ep 1 of 6
(confirmed as Genesis of the Daleks)
Two stories this weekend, so remember to go to the polls early if you plan to take part in the vote. The top ten countdown is continuing remorselessly heading for its climax.
SPACE: The Imagination Station
Sat-Fri 7:30AM EST The Dead Planet eps 1 - 7 of 7 (The Dead Planet, The Survivors, The Escape, The Ambush, The Expedition, The Ordeal, The Rescue)

The entire week goes to the 2nd ever Doctor Who serial, the story that introduced the Doctor's most familiar opponents - the Daleks.
BBC America
Sat 7AM+5PM EST, Sun 8AM EST The Seeds of Doom movie, part 3 of 3
Harrison Chase loses his mind and his house when the Krynoid decides to go on a growth spurt.
MPBC Maine 10, 10, 12, 13, 26
Dropped from schedule.
NHPTV New Hampshire 11, 49, 52
Sun 3PM EST The Green Death ep 6 of 6
Sun 3:30PM EST The Time Warrior eps 1 of 4

The Doctor battles Boss for the future of humanity. Benton gets in trouble with the RSPCA by serving maggots deadly food. Later, scientists begin to disappear, and the Doctor is called in to investigate.
WQED/WQEX 13, 16 Pittsburgh, PA
Sat 11:30PM EST The Hand Of Fear ep 3 of 4
Eldrad demands that the Doctor take her back to Kastria before the destruction of her civilization.
WYBE 35 Philadelphia, PA
Sat 11PM EST Horror of Fang Rock eps 3+4 of 4
The Rutan decides to kill everyone in the lighthouse, and the Doctor may not be able to stop him from succeeding. Leela's fate at the end of this story appears to have been mildly based on the story of Sodom, Gomorrah, and Lot's wife.
MPT Maryland 22, 28, 31, 36, 62, 67
Late Sat 12:30AM EST The Seeds of Doom movie
The final UNIT story in Tom Baker's era does not have any of the UNIT regulars in it. The 4thDoctor and Sarah investigate interstellar seed pods from Antarctica with a desire to eat humans.
WUSF 16 Tampa, FL
Sat 11:30PM EST Planet of Fire ep 1 of 4
Kamelion manipulates the TARDIS so that the Doctor finds a relic from Turlough's home planet which may destroy the new life Turlough has built. "You're FINISHED, Kamelion!" is Turlough's fairly restrained reaction to having his past thrown into his face.
WCET 48 Cincinnati, OH
Sat 11:30PM EST Carnival Of Monsters eps 2+3 of 4
The Doctor and Jo are trapped inside a Scope, a device to show primitive creatures in their native environments. A now-damaged device that is getting ready to pack up and die, killing everyone inside.
WYIN 56 Gary, IN (Chicago, IL)
Sat 10PM CST The Android Invasion ep 1 of 4
The 4th Doctor and Sarah return to Earth, only to find the place abandoned.
KTCA 2 St. Paul, MN
Sat 11:30PM CST Pyramids of Mars ep 1 of 4
Professor Scarman discovers that some Egyptian curses are real. The Doctor discovers that UNIT HQ can look like a mess even without UNIT being there.
IPTV Iowa 11, 12, 21, 24, 27, 32, 32, 36
Fri 11:05PM CST The Time Warrior eps 2+3 of 4
Unable to believe that she has travelled through time, Sarah convinces herself that it is all a historical reconstruction. Meanwhile, Lynx and Irongron find getting along with each other harder and harder.
PPTV North Dakota 2, 3, 4, 6, 9, 13, 19
Fri 10:30PM CST (9:30PM MST) The Hand Of Fear ep 2 of 4
Under the control of a crystalline hand, Sarah sets up a nuclear reaction.
KBDI/K32EO Denver/Colorado Springs, CO zip 80205
Late Fri 12:30AM MST Pyramids of Mars eps 3+4 of 4
Sat 10PM MST The Android Invasion eps 1+2 of 4

New later start time on Friday. If you're still awake that late on Friday, the Doctor and Sarah must defeat Sutekh in 1911 to save the world from destruction in 1980. On Saturday, the Doctor and Sarah return to Earth to find it strangely empty. The living die too easily. The dead go to the pub. In spite of this, the Doctor suspects that something is wrong with Earth.
KNME 5 Albuquerque, NM
Sat 10:30PM MST The Power of Kroll movie
The TARDIS lands on a swampy moon, with terrain too treacherous for K9 to make an appearance. Such a shame. There's a human on this moon who sounds just like our favorite dog. Probably because it is the same actor.
KRWG 22 Las Cruces, NM (El Paso, TX)
Sat 10:30PM MST Underworld movie
In an uncharted region of space, the Doctor comes across a crew who have travelling through space for thousands of years as a result of a Time Lord blunder. As their journey nears its end, the Doctor finds himself with no choice but to help them out.
KSPS 7 Spokane, WA zip 99223
Sat 10:35PM PST (11:35PM MST) The Twin Dilemma movie
Late start due to Black Adder episode. The Doctor's appearance has stabilized, but the spectrox toxemia leaves him in a near psychotic state. Mentally impaired, he blunders into the search for missing twin geniuses. Every person's worst enemy is his or her self. This is absolutely true for the Doctor.
KBTC/KCKA 28, 15 Tacoma/Centralia, WA
Sat 7PM+1AM PST The Time Monster eps 3+4 of 6
The Master's machinations warp time and space around Cambridge. The Doctor battles him using flashing lights, a fork, a spoon, a bit of wire, and a nice mug of tea. There are a great many problems in life that can be fixed with a well-made batch of tea. Not the bland, icky stuff that you find in some of the less-expensive hotels in London. It does have to be *good* tea.
KTEH 54 San Jose, CA
Sun 11PM PST The Leisure Hive all 4 eps
John Nathan-Turner becomes the producer, heralding new opening credits, a change in the color of the Doctor's scarf, K9 becoming disabled in every story, and more experimental camera shots. First up, the Doctor and Romana decide to take a vacation at the famous leisure hive, a resort built by the survivors of a devastating war. It appears someone wants the war to have a sequel.

That's it for this week. Until next week, take care.