August 31st, 2020


Whoniversaries 31 August: Roy Castle, Gerry Davis, Michael Sheard, The Dominators #4

i) births and deaths

31 August 1932: birth of Roy Castle, who played Ian in the Doctor Who and the Daleks movie with Peter Cushing (1965).

31 August 1991: death of Gerry Davis, script editor of Doctor Who from The Celestial Toymaker (First Doctor, 1966) to part 3 of The Evil of the Daleks (Second Doctor, 1967), co-writer of The Tenth Planet (First Doctor, 1966), The Highlanders (Second Doctor, 1967), and Tomb of the Cybermen (Second Doctor, 1966-67), and sole credited writer of Revenge of the Cybermen (Fourth Doctor, 1975).

31 August 2005: death of Michael Sheard, who played Rhos in The Ark (First Doctor, 1966), Dr. Summers in The Mind of Evil (Third Doctor, 1971), Laurence Scarman in Pyramids of Mars (Fourth Doctor, 1975), Lowe in The Invisible Enemy (Fourth Doctor, 1977), the Mergrave in Castrovalva (Fifth Doctor, 1982), and the Headmaster in Remembrance of the Daleks (Seventh Doctor, 1988). I'm not sure if any other actor has played six different Doctor Who parts of that weight.

ii) broadcast and production anniversaries

31 August 1968: broadcast of fourth episode of The Dominators. Jamie and Cully manage to destroy a Quark; the Dominators threaten to take revenge by killing the Doctor.

31 August 1990: John Nathan-Turner resigns as producer after a decade, and the Doctor Who production office is closed by the BBC.

31 August 2012: release of episode 5 of Pond Life.

And that's it for August. I hope you've been enjoying these. It's a bit of a chore sometimes, to be honest, but usually not!

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August Books

Not so much this month - several very long books, and my demi-commute is hitting my reading.

Non-fiction: 1 (YTD 38)
From Barrows to Bypass: Excavations at West Cotton, Raunds, Northamptonshire, 1985-1989, by Dave Windell, Andy Chapman and Jo Woodwiss

Fiction (non-sf): 5 (YTD 23)
Our Mutual Friend, by Charles Dickens
Jerusalem: The Boroughs, by Alan Moore
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, by Ken Kesey
Wolf Hall, by Hilary Mantel
Bring Up the Bodies, by Hilary Mantel

sf (non-Who): 3 (YTD 79)
A Boy and His Dog, by Harlan Ellison
Jerusalem: Mansoul, by Alan Moore
The Conqueror’s Child, by Suzy McKee Charnas

Comics: 1 (YTD 28)
Star Wars IV: A New Hope, by Roy Thomas and Howard Chaykin

Doctor Who: 2 (YTD 10)
The Secret in Vault 13, by David Solomons
The Maze of Doom, by David Solomons

3,700 pages (YTD 47,900)
4/12 (YTD 58/177) by women (Woodwiss, Mantel x2, McKee Charnas)
None AFAIK (YTD 18/177) by PoC
4/12 reread (YTD 25/177) - One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Wolf Hall, Bring Up the Bodies, A Boy and His Dog

Jerusalem: Vernal’s Inquest, by Alan Moore
Titus Groan, by Mervyn Peake
The Mirror and the Light, by Hilary Mantel

Coming soon (perhaps)
The Sky Road, by Ken MacLeod
Shadow Scale, by Rachel Hartman
East West Street, by Philippe Sands
Chronin Volume 1: The Knife at Your Back, by Alison Wilgus
Beren and Luthien, by J.R.R. Tolkien
Darwin's Island: The Galapagos in the Garden of England, by Steve Jones
Barcelona, Catalonia: A View from the Inside, by Matthew Tree
"Stardance" by Spider Robinson and Jeanne Robinson
Palestine 100: Stories from a century after the Nakba, ed. Mazen Maarouf
Complexity: The Emerging Science at the Edge of Order and Chaos, by M. Mitchell Waldrop
Helen Waddell, by Felicitas Corrigan
Survivants, Tome 3, by Leo
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values, by Robert M. Pirsig
SS-GB, by Len Deighton
Tono-Bungay, by H. G. Wells
The Inside of the Cup, by Winston S. Churchill
This Must be the Place, by Maggie O'Farrell
Utopia For Realists, by Rutger Bregman