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If Tom Baker were to have quit DW sooner than he did...


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Old 21-02-2013, 19:09
Glenn A
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And as is common knowledge, the BBC execs didn't want McCoy either as his acting ability was questionable. JNT was asked to re-cast.... JNT did, bringing in McCoy + a dozen other delibiratly poor actors.... The Execs just gave up, and agreed McCoy be cast, even though JNT stitched it up
Could never really work out JNT, as his reign was during the show's long decline, and I know Tom Baker didn't like him. However, he did last for almost ten years on the show and made it into a big export for the BBC.
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Old 21-02-2013, 20:11
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Could never really work out JNT, as his reign was during the show's long decline, and I know Tom Baker didn't like him. However, he did last for almost ten years on the show and made it into a big export for the BBC.
He also spent most of his last years openly not wanting to be there but I guess there was no one else up for the job?
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Old 21-02-2013, 22:16
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He also spent most of his last years openly not wanting to be there but I guess there was no one else up for the job?
He was one of the very last salaried producers at the BBC - in other words, he was getting a regular, monthly wage from the licence fee, so the BBC had to find him some work to do, because he wasn't freelance and wasn't paid for limited periods.

Every year, they'd promise him he'd be moving on from Who, except no-one else would take it, so each year he was made to come back, or quit a regular income. It was a classic 'stuck-in-a-rut' syndrome, especially as JNT was sadly waiting for the BBC to commission his dream production... Which they never did. So eventually it all came to a head - ratings collapsed, JNT walked out, the BBC didn't know what to do, Philip Segal approached the BBC about making the show a US-co-
production...

There is a persistant story that the BBC did approach someone - rumoured to be the producer of Jupiter Moon, William Smethurst - about a 1990 series, but he declined and the show went on ice.

E: *Wiki claims Paul Stone, who did Box Of Delights, was asked about taking over for Season 26. So it shows they were actively seeking someone to give it fresh legs.
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Old 22-02-2013, 00:07
DiscoP
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He was one of the very last salaried producers at the BBC - in other words, he was getting a regular, monthly wage from the licence fee, so the BBC had to find him some work to do, because he wasn't freelance and wasn't paid for limited periods.

Every year, they'd promise him he'd be moving on from Who, except no-one else would take it, so each year he was made to come back, or quit a regular income. It was a classic 'stuck-in-a-rut' syndrome, especially as JNT was sadly waiting for the BBC to commission his dream production... Which they never did. So eventually it all came to a head - ratings collapsed, JNT walked out, the BBC didn't know what to do, Philip Segal approached the BBC about making the show a US-co-
production...

There is a persistant story that the BBC did approach someone - rumoured to be the producer of Jupiter Moon, William Smethurst - about a 1990 series, but he declined and the show went on ice.

E: *Wiki claims Paul Stone, who did Box Of Delights, was asked about taking over for Season 26. So it shows they were actively seeking someone to give it fresh legs.
Blimey. I didn't know any of that. Unless I've misunderstood are you saying that the BBC axed Doctor Who because JNT walked out? or that JNT could still have been employed by the beeb even after they axed Doctor Who had he not left?

I think I also read once that they approached Verity Lambert as well, but she declined! Not sure if this was during JNT's era or during the wilderness years...
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Old 22-02-2013, 01:41
AdelaideGirl
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What was JNTs dream project?
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Old 22-02-2013, 01:48
SpringheelJack
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Blimey. I didn't know any of that. Unless I've misunderstood are you saying that the BBC axed Doctor Who because JNT walked out? or that JNT could still have been employed by the beeb even after they axed Doctor Who had he not left?

I think I also read once that they approached Verity Lambert as well, but she declined! Not sure if this was during JNT's era or during the wilderness years...
As far as it seems clear, when Impact, JNT's revival of Compact, was scrapped, he made the decision to leave at the end of Season 26 regardless.

If he had been prepared to stay on, he said it would have been unlikely that Season 27 would have happened under his tenure.

However, the BBC did look for a new producer, ultimately in vain. They also told McCoy he had to agree to do a 1990 series, his fourth, to make Season 26 back in 1988, which is why he didn't leave in 1989 like he planned too (he said many times he wanted to do the three-year Troughton-style reign).

When this all fell by the wayside - no new BBC producer wanted to take JNT's place, and no-one could be in place for Season 27 regardless of the ratings, it was decided to try and out-source the series to an indie production company. It should also be noted that Cartmel was head-hunted for Casualty, so Who lost him out-right at the same time too.

Verity Lambert put together was invited to pitch for the show under her CinemaVerity production house, but alas, like all the other UK bids, it failed to get close to an agreement.

As has been noted before, even when Season 26 was airing, Philip Segal was approaching the BBC about potential US production involvement. Where all the UK bids failed, Segal's tenacity won through, despite him alone losing the backing of Colombia, Amblin, CBS, and Steven Spielberg.
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Old 22-02-2013, 02:48
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As far as it seems clear, when Impact, JNT's revival of Compact, was scrapped, he made the decision to leave at the end of Season 26 regardless.

If he had been prepared to stay on, he said it would have been unlikely that Season 27 would have happened under his tenure.

However, the BBC did look for a new producer, ultimately in vain. They also told McCoy he had to agree to do a 1990 series, his fourth, to make Season 26 back in 1988, which is why he didn't leave in 1989 like he planned too (he said many times he wanted to do the three-year Troughton-style reign).

When this all fell by the wayside - no new BBC producer wanted to take JNT's place, and no-one could be in place for Season 27 regardless of the ratings, it was decided to try and out-source the series to an indie production company. It should also be noted that Cartmel was head-hunted for Casualty, so Who lost him out-right at the same time too.

Verity Lambert put together was invited to pitch for the show under her CinemaVerity production house, but alas, like all the other UK bids, it failed to get close to an agreement.

As has been noted before, even when Season 26 was airing, Philip Segal was approaching the BBC about potential US production involvement. Where all the UK bids failed, Segal's tenacity won through, despite him alone losing the backing of Colombia, Amblin, CBS, and Steven Spielberg.
Fascinating stuff! I often forget how lucky we are nowadays that both RTD and Moffat are massive fans of the show, have such passion for it and actually want the job! I remember reading as far back as Troughton's time there were producers who didn't really want to work on Doctor Who and only did so because the BBC would promise to move them onto something else after they had done their time.

It will be a sad day when Moffat decides to leave (not that he seems to have any plans to fortunately) because I don't really see anyone else of the same calibre who would take over.
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Old 22-02-2013, 09:50
SpringheelJack
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Fascinating stuff! I often forget how lucky we are nowadays that both RTD and Moffat are massive fans of the show, have such passion for it and actually want the job! I remember reading as far back as Troughton's time there were producers who didn't really want to work on Doctor Who and only did so because the BBC would promise to move them onto something else after they had done their time.

It will be a sad day when Moffat decides to leave (not that he seems to have any plans to fortunately) because I don't really see anyone else of the same calibre who would take over.

JNT did love the show, but he said in retrospect, he should have just resigned after the 20th Anniversary. He was holding out for a new gig, initially his pitch for Impact, but neither materialised for him, sadly.
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Old 22-02-2013, 20:34
Jon Ross
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Could never really work out JNT, as his reign was during the show's long decline, and I know Tom Baker didn't like him. However, he did last for almost ten years on the show and made it into a big export for the BBC.
Tom Baker didn't like Graham Williams much either, and I would argue the decline truly started during the Williams panto era. If anything, JNT arrested the decline, for a while anyway. I doubt the show would have lasted another ten years if Graham Williams had been running it.
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Old 22-02-2013, 21:32
DiscoP
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Tom Baker didn't like Graham Williams much either, and I would argue the decline truly started during the Williams panto era. If anything, JNT arrested the decline, for a while anyway. I doubt the show would have lasted another ten years if Graham Williams had been running it.
From watching repeats on UK Gold many years ago and buying the DVD's it seems obvious to me that is when the decline began as well but oddly I don't think this was reflected in ratings was it? I think Leela and K-9 in particular were popular companions.

In my opinion you can place the decline of Doctor Who firmly with the Deadly Assassin story because it was the cliffhanger, with the Doctor drowning, at the end of episode three that prompted Mary Whitehouse to complain, which in turn prompted the BBC to bring in the comedy elements that followed after.
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Old 22-02-2013, 21:53
Jon Ross
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From watching repeats on UK Gold many years ago and buying the DVD's it seems obvious to me that is when the decline began as well but oddly I don't think this was reflected in ratings was it? I think Leela and K-9 in particular were popular companions.
There was actually a significant drop in ratings between Hinchcliffe and Williams. Williams' first season had significantly lower ratings than the Hinchcliffe seasons. Of course, ratings never tell the full story, there could have been more competition on the other side. Williams' last season had some of the best ratings in Doctor Who history (but then there was nothing on ITV for many weeks due to a strike!)

I think that under Williams, it became The Tom Baker Show rather than Doctor Who. It became sillier and sillier and sillier, and eventually people were only tuning in because they liked Tom Baker and Lalla, or liked Douglas Adams' jokes. You could tell that, too often, directors and actors were not taking the show as seriously as they once did.
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Old 01-03-2013, 19:26
adam_fransella
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...while he did indeed look a bit different by the time of "Logopolis" (with or without his change of costume, or different personality), at least he did not look too old for the role, at the end - UNLIKE Roger Moore in his seventh and final James Bond outing "A View To A Kill".

The contrast between Moore in "Live And Let Die" (where he looked younger than Sean Connery, despite being 3 years older) and Moore in "A View To A Kill" is notable, facially - as well as in relation to the ages of the women he was sleeping with!

While Tom Baker ideally should have quit "Doctor Who" at least one season earlier, Roger Moore should have quit the role of 007 not just one film earlier, but two films, or even three films.

(Had Timothy Dalton replaced Moore sooner, starting in "For Your Eyes Only", he would have had a whole decade (the '80s) to himself, and perhaps be as popular as both his successors - if not Connery, as well.)
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Old 02-03-2013, 17:57
Glenn A
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Tom Baker didn't like Graham Williams much either, and I would argue the decline truly started during the Williams panto era. If anything, JNT arrested the decline, for a while anyway. I doubt the show would have lasted another ten years if Graham Williams had been running it.
JNT did make it darker again, particularly the last Davidson series, which had three excellent stories, and also the violence quotient was upped in the mid eighties. However, he had an even bigger enemy than The Daleks to contend with, Michael Grade, who was determined to get his revenge on the show which gave him a hard time at LWT.
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Old 02-03-2013, 19:25
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There was actually a significant drop in ratings between Hinchcliffe and Williams. Williams' first season had significantly lower ratings than the Hinchcliffe seasons. Of course, ratings never tell the full story, there could have been more competition on the other side. Williams' last season had some of the best ratings in Doctor Who history (but then there was nothing on ITV for many weeks due to a strike!)

I think that under Williams, it became The Tom Baker Show rather than Doctor Who. It became sillier and sillier and sillier, and eventually people were only tuning in because they liked Tom Baker and Lalla, or liked Douglas Adams' jokes. You could tell that, too often, directors and actors were not taking the show as seriously as they once did.
Hmmm, a light hearted series where the characters look like they're enjoying themselves and smile and make jokes as they gallavant around the universe vs ponderings on entropy and other hard maths.
I know which I'd rather watch!
I'm sure the kids watching just want to see a bit of fun, not continue the work they were doing at school that day.

Given that era, that budget and the scale of the show, they were probably right to not take things massively seriously as any time they did could've come off even cheesier.
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Old 04-03-2013, 11:50
adam_fransella
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...while he did indeed look a bit different by the time of "Logopolis" (with or without his change of costume, or different personality), at least he did not look too old for the role, at the end - UNLIKE Roger Moore in his seventh and final James Bond outing "A View To A Kill".

The contrast between Moore in "Live And Let Die" (where he looked younger than Sean Connery, despite being 3 years older) and Moore in "A View To A Kill" is notable, facially - as well as in relation to the ages of the women he was sleeping with!

While Tom Baker ideally should have quit "Doctor Who" at least one season earlier, Roger Moore should have quit the role of 007 not just one film earlier, but two films, or even three films.

(Had Timothy Dalton replaced Moore sooner, starting in "For Your Eyes Only", he would have had a whole decade (the '80s) to himself, and perhaps be as popular as both his successors - if not Connery, as well.)
As if this parallel between James Bond and Doctor Who were not enough, there seems to be another: while Baker threatened to quit the role of The Doctor earlier in his tenure, but was persuaded to stay by Graham Williams and then Philip Hinchcliffe, before being permitted to leave by John Nathan Turner...Moore intended to leave the role of 007 after "Moonraker" (1979) but was lured back into the role in "For Your Eyes Only" by a salary increase (as well as having no choice but to stay, due to Timothy Dalton declining to succeed Moore this early on, due to fears as to what the script and direction would be like), and then persuaded to stay on for "Octopussy" (1983) due to the unofficial Bond film "Never Say Never Again" (with Connery) looming on the horizon, and being planned for release in the same year, leading to a 'Battle of the Bonds' as the press described it.

But once "Octopussy" had outgrossed "For Your Eyes Only" and "Never Say Never Again", Moore should have flatly refused to act in "A View To A Kill", given the ages of the women he did love scenes with - what a crime he did not.
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Old 04-03-2013, 13:54
SpringheelJack
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As if this parallel between James Bond and Doctor Who were not enough, there seems to be another: while Baker threatened to quit the role of The Doctor earlier in his tenure, but was persuaded to stay by Graham Williams and then Philip Hinchcliffe, before being permitted to leave by John Nathan Turner...Moore intended to leave the role of 007 after "Moonraker" (1979) but was lured back into the role in "For Your Eyes Only" by a salary increase (as well as having no choice but to stay, due to Timothy Dalton declining to succeed Moore this early on, due to fears as to what the script and direction would be like), and then persuaded to stay on for "Octopussy" (1983) due to the unofficial Bond film "Never Say Never Again" (with Connery) looming on the horizon, and being planned for release in the same year, leading to a 'Battle of the Bonds' as the press described it.

But once "Octopussy" had outgrossed "For Your Eyes Only" and "Never Say Never Again", Moore should have flatly
refused to act in "A View To A Kill", given the ages of the women he did love scenes with - what a crime he did not.

Moore admits he soldiered on too long - but the fault doesn't lie with him. If they couldn't find an actor to take over for the right terms or money, then the producers had no choice but to keep asking Moore back.
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Old 04-03-2013, 20:15
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Just watched the extras on Ark In Space Special edition,

The film footage of Tom Baker visiting Belfast. I'm sure the reporter asks him if he will regenerate again. Maybe a flipant reply but I'm sure he says he is contracted for 20 years.
That would have taken him up to the McGann movie.
Would have suited me but there might not have been a Redbeard Rum in Blackadder.
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Old 04-03-2013, 21:58
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The only good story in Peter Davison's first series was Earthshock. A lot of people on DS, have mentioned that in previous years.
Then a lot of people on DS are wrong!

Baiting apart, I LOVE Kinda and there's only really Time Flight I don't get on with in this season, although Four To Doomsday drags a bit for me. Castrovalva is one of my favourite 'intro' stories, as much for the TARDIS scenes and previous Doctor channelling as anything.

Oddly enough I find Earthshock much less impressive these days. At the time I was hugely blown away - the Cybermen were my favourite monsters, and I wasn't that keen on Adric - but when I watch it now I find it good but unspectacular.

I think the Cybermen reveal / Adric's death being shock moments made it more than it is, and without the shock factor it's a lesser episode.

Ok, ok, the first episode's great. Fantastic, mysterious atmosphere. Reminds me a bit of the first episode of Terror Of The Zygons.
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Old 07-03-2013, 01:20
Jon Ross
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Hmmm, a light hearted series where the characters look like they're enjoying themselves and smile and make jokes as they gallavant around the universe vs ponderings on entropy and other hard maths.
I know which I'd rather watch!
I'm sure the kids watching just want to see a bit of fun, not continue the work they were doing at school that day.

Given that era, that budget and the scale of the show, they were probably right to not take things massively seriously as any time they did could've come off even cheesier.
I disagree. I think Doctor Who was meant to be a scary show, and when you fill a show with gags and pratting about, it can't be scary. That was certainly what attracted me to Doctor Who in the first place, and what left me cold about many of the Williams stories (especially Season 17). City of Death, in particular, would be my vote for most overrated Doctor Who story ever made. I remember when I first saw it and it did nothing for me because it just wasn't scary like the best Doctor Whos are.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:20
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What is wrong with McCoy? I thought he was a good doctor but he was let down badly by the quality of the scripts especially in season 24. I think Big Finish have shown that he is a good doctor and I have enjoyed listening to the 7th doctor audios a lot, I also enjoyed watching McCoy in the Hobbit. Having said that I also enjoy the 6th doctor as well and Colin shouldn't have been sacked.
McCoy had a limited acting range. That was his problem.

The show certainly had a vision in the last two seasons of McCoy and I liked where it was going.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:22
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Then a lot of people on DS are wrong!

Baiting apart, I LOVE Kinda and there's only really Time Flight I don't get on with in this season, although Four To Doomsday drags a bit for me. Castrovalva is one of my favourite 'intro' stories, as much for the TARDIS scenes and previous Doctor channelling as anything.

Oddly enough I find Earthshock much less impressive these days. At the time I was hugely blown away - the Cybermen were my favourite monsters, and I wasn't that keen on Adric - but when I watch it now I find it good but unspectacular.

I think the Cybermen reveal / Adric's death being shock moments made it more than it is, and without the shock factor it's a lesser episode.

Ok, ok, the first episode's great. Fantastic, mysterious atmosphere. Reminds me a bit of the first episode of Terror Of The Zygons.

It is hardly baiting.

Davo's era was a bit hit and miss for me. One step forward one step back. Season 21 was definately his best, season 20 a mess and 19 up and down.

Still, compared to what followed it was sublime.
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Old 07-03-2013, 14:01
DiscoP
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I disagree. I think Doctor Who was meant to be a scary show, and when you fill a show with gags and pratting about, it can't be scary. That was certainly what attracted me to Doctor Who in the first place, and what left me cold about many of the Williams stories (especially Season 17). City of Death, in particular, would be my vote for most overrated Doctor Who story ever made. I remember when I first saw it and it did nothing for me because it just wasn't scary like the best Doctor Whos are.
Completely agree with you about City of Death. I know it got the high number of viewers because there was literally nothing on the other side but I watched this on VHS for the first time many years ago and could find absolutely nothing to like about the story.
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Old 07-03-2013, 14:23
tinny
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In fairness he was right tto get ridd of dr who for aa while becasue when it came bacck , it was milles better, i ddontt mean the movie , that were c""" but the new series was ace ax
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Old 07-03-2013, 14:30
tinny
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Tom baker could act in a dustbin andd still be kool ax
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