November 12, 1964: First Doctor Who novelisation published

“The story from the beginning! Here is the exciting adventure of Dr. Who, Susan, Barbara, Ian, from the moment they meet one foggy autumn night on a lonely common beside a Police Box (Ah, but what a curious Police Box!) to the time they encounter the weird Daleks.

It is a thrilling story, and we know this book will be one of the most popular published in the Armada series. Can you wait any longer? Start reading!” [].

Doctor_Who_In_An_Exciting_Adventure_With_The_DaleksThe first Doctor Who serial to be adapted as a novel was The Daleks. Written by David Whitaker, the book was first published in hardback on 12 November 1964 by Frederick Muller as Doctor Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks. A paperback release by Armada Books followed in 1965.

In 1973 Target Books published it under the cover title Doctor Who and the Daleks, although the full title was still given on the inside frontpage.

Whitaker’s book differs from most later novelisations in that it is written in the first person and from the point of view of a companion (Ian Chesterton). It also ignores the events of the preceding serial An Unearthly Child, except for a modified retelling of the first episode (to explain how Ian and Barbara joined the Doctor). Here, Ian meets the Doctor, Barbara (who is Susan’s tutor) and Susan on Barnes Common after a car crash. The novel also plays up the romantic tension between the two human companions and features a glass Dalek leader on Skaro.

Susan Foreman is renamed Susan English for the novelisation, which has led to some reference books erroneously listing the character by this name. [Wikipedia]



September 16, 1965: Second Doctor Who novelisations published


“DOCTOR WHO lands his space-time machine Tardis on the cold, craggy planet of Vortis. The Doctor and his companions, Ian and Vicki, are soon captured by the ZARBI, huge ant-like creatures with metallic bodies and pincer claws; meanwhile Barbara falls into the hands of the friendly MENOPTERA who have come to rid Vortis of the malevolent power of the ZARBI…” []

Doctor_Who_and_the_Zarbi (1965)The Web Planet was the second serial was the second to be novelised by the publisher Frederick Muller. It was written by Bill Strutton under the title Doctor Who and the Zarbi in 1965. In 1973 Target Books acquired the rights to the novelisation and reprinted it as one of the first in their long-running series of Doctor Who novelisations, although when the imprint began numbering the books in the series, The Zarbi was listed as Number 73 in the series. [Wikipedia]


August 27, 1993: in Doctor Who -: “The Paradise of Death” first airs on radio

Paradise_of_Death-Radio_PlayThe Paradise of Death is a 5-part BBC radio drama, based on the long-running British science fiction television series Doctor Who, and starring Jon Pertwee as the Doctor. It was first broadcast on BBC Radio 5 from 27 August to 24 September 1993. It was subsequently repeated, between 12 April and 10 May 1994, by BBC Radio 2.

Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart of UNIT asks the Doctor to investigate a particularly gruesome murder at a new theme park on London’s Hampstead Heath, called Space World. Together with journalist Sarah Jane Smith and her photographer Jeremy Fitzoliver, they take in the incongruous exhibits, including virtual reality machines, and even seemingly living alien monstrosities – which the Brigadier immediately suspects of the killing.

The owners of the theme park are a gang of alien carpetbaggers from outer space, who are ostensibly trying to persuade the Government to begin talks on allowing interplanetary trade. Although their real motives are unclear, they have a sophisticated form of mind-control which they employ to kill anyone who threatens their plans.

When Sarah is kidnapped by the sinister Mr Tragan, and transported to the aliens’ home planet, Parakon, the Doctor and the Brigadier must race to her rescue in the Tardis. On Parakon, they learn the truth about the proposed trade deal, which will mean the destruction of all life on Earth. The rapine plant is a parasite which will turn the planet into a wasteland.

Freeth and Tragan are secretly conspiring to overthrow the President and democratic government on Parakon, and fear what the visitors from Earth may accidentally disclose which might reveal their plans to Captain Rudley, the commander of the Presidential Guard. The Doctor hopes to persuade the President that rapine will harm the Earth, but Freeth and Grebber hope to have the Doctor executed before he can do so. [Wikipedia]

August 11, 1994: Actor Peter Cushing dies

Peter Cushing (26 May 1913 – 11 August 1994) was an English actor and a BAFTA TV Award Best Actor winner in 1956. He is mainly known for his prolific appearances in Hammer Films, in which he played strong character roles like the sinister scientist Baron Frankenstein, Sherlock Holmes and the vampire hunter Dr. Van Helsing, among many other roles. He appeared frequently opposite Christopher Lee and, occasionally, Vincent Price. A familiar face on both sides of the Atlantic, Cushing is best known outside the Hammer productions for playing Dr. Who in Doctor Who and the Daleks (1965) and Daleks – Invasion Earth (1966), and for his performance as Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars (1977).

Find out more at Wikipedia.

July in Doctor Who: Doctor Who Magazine Nos 114, 126, 138 & 150

DWM_114The 114th issue of Doctor Who Magazine had a cover date of July 1986.

The cover features cover artwork from Doctor Who and the Web of Fear by Chris Achilleos.

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The 126th issue of Doctor Who Magazine had a cover date of July 1987. Following Patrick Troughton‘s death on 28 March, this issue served as an obituary with tributes from several people.

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DWM_138The 138th issue of Doctor Who Magazine had a cover date of July 1988.

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The 150th issue of Doctor Who Magazine had a cover date of July 1989.

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July 26, 1979 in Doctor Who: “The Image Of Fendahl” novelisation published

“`The Fendahl is death,’ said the the Doctor. `How do you kill death itself?’

The ultra-modern technology of the Time Scanner combines with the ancient evil of Fetch Wood, and brings to life a terror that has lain hidden for twelve million years.

The Doctor and Leela fight to destroy the Fendahl, a recreated menace that threatens to devour all life in the galaxy.”

Doctor Who and the Image of the Fendahl was a novelisation based on the 1977 television serial Image of the Fendahl, written by Terrance Dicks, and published by Target Books in July 1979. The book’s cover (painted by John Geary) was once voted as the worst in the series by readers of Dreamwatch magazine. [Wikipedia]