The lost adventure of 1979, Shada was to be the blockbuster finale of the seventeenth series. Written by Douglas Adams, Shada was never finished due to an industrial action strike. It has remained an ambitious story that existed only in the imagination of classic Who fans for many years.
In 1992, Shada was released on VHS using all of the footage shot but previously unseen except at conventions along with bridging sequences with Tom Baker in an armchair. The added music and visual effects came close to offering fans an idea of what the finished product would have looked like… and it fit in with the low quality of the previous serial The Horns of Nimon. While I was grateful for the work done in bringing this lost story to the fans, it fell far below my expectations.
In any case, due to the rise in popularity of Douglas Adams after his stint as script editor on Doctor Who, Shada has become one of the more revered ‘lost stories’ of Doctor Who. It has been re-enacted by Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor then novelized by Gareth Roberts just this past year.
According to TV Shows on DVD, Shada will be released as part of a DVD box set on January 8th in the United States. Both the VHS and flash animation versions will be included.
New to DVD! Digitally remastered Doctor Who classic Shada! Written by Douglas Adams as his final contribution to Doctor Who, Shada was envisaged as a Time Lord story without a Gallifreyan setting. It sees the Doctor bringing Romana to present-day Earth to visit Professor Chronotis, an elderly Time Lord who absconded from Gallifrey and now lives a quiet academic life at St Cedd’s College in Cambridge.
Also seeking Chronotis is a scientist called Skagra who has a device, in the form of a floating sphere, with which he intends to steal the Professor’s mind and thereby learn the location of a book entitled The Worshipful and Ancient Law of Gallifrey. Skagra eventually succeeds in obtaining the book, which has been borrowed from the Professor’s study by a student named Chris Parsons. He then kidnaps Romana and hijacks the TARDIS.
- Shada – Flash version
- Taken Out of Time
- Now and Then
- Strike! Strike! Strike!
- Being a Girl Women in Doctor Who
- Remembering Nicholas Courtney
- Doctor Who Stories – Peter Purves
- The Lambert Tapes – Part 1
- Those Deadly Divas
- Photo Galleries
- Easter Egg
- PDF materials: Radio Times Listings
- Production Note Subtitles
Additionally, More that 30 Years in The Tardis will be included om the DVD release. Previously available on VHS, this is a superb documentary chronicling the history of Doctor Who on screen, interviews with the cast and key members of the production team as well as the impact of the series on popular culture.
I am fortunate to own the VHS version and it is an excellent testament to Doctor Who, containing some touching moments such as Colin Baker and Nicola Bryant witnessing a Cyber-invasion, Carole Ann Ford as Susan evading flying Daleks in London, Jon Pertwee as the Doctor driving the Whomobile only to confront a massive dinosaur (far more impressive than the 1974 Invasion version) and the Brigadier kidnapped by Autons.
This will also include some amazing extras…
scenes from the missing 1965 Dalek episode DEVIL’S PLANET.
colour film of WILLIAM HARTNELL at a 1966 airshow, plus pictures from his own scrapbook.
Dalek creator TERRY NATION on WHICKER’S WORLD’ in 1968
Behind The Scenes
Action from the studio floor including CARNIVAL OF THE MONSTERS (1972), DEATH TO THE OALEKS (1973), THE CAVES OF ANDROZANI (1984), GHOSTLIGHT<1989)
BLUE PETER – the Doctor Who monster competition winners, the unveiling of the Who mobile
and the War Machine.
NATIONWIDE – the TOM BAKER interview
Pebble Mill at One – interview with Patrick Troughton and visual effects designer Bernard Wilkie
More treasures from the cutting room floor
Battlefield – The Brigadier meets Ace for the first time
Sophie Aldred and the water tank stunt that went wrong
Remembrance of the Daleks – Is there more to the Doctor?
Yes, SJV… I am also weirded out that you just asked me about this when we talked on Sunday.