Tag Archives: UNIT

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Season 13

fourthbannerPossibly the best season of the 1970s, which tells you that I clearly loved season thirteen. It’s the second year of Hinchcliffe/Holmes, no longer in the shadow of the successful team of Letts/Dicks. (With one exception, but that’s Hinchcliffe’s fault for asking Letts to direct and Nation to write a script.) But I digress…READ MORE!

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Doctor Who re-watch – Season Ten

Season 10

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I’m alive!

Which may seem an odd thing to say, as I’m obviously typing this, but honestly, I’m finally at a point in Doctor Who where I am a living person. Only two months old, mind, when episode one of The Three Doctors was transmitted, but alive nonetheless! Woo! So, onto the review… Um. First of all, despite all protestations to the contrary, The Three Doctors is not the tenth anniversary story. For one thing it began transmission just under a year before the tenth anniversary, and season ten itself finished transmitting a good five months before the anniversary. If anything, it’s a celebration of nine years. Sorry, but it is. Who celebrates a birthday eleven months early?

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A Brief History… FREE

We all like a little bit of free reading material, right? Well, that’s good as I have something free to give to whoever wants it.

tve14908-98-19680210-0A Brief History of the Lethbridge-Stewarts is a little work of fiction, an excerpt from a larger fictional book by everybody’s favourite irritating journalist, Harold Chorley!  It’s ‘in-universe’, which means officially part of the Lethbridge-Stewart canon and gives a few hints at the larger picture of the series.

Alas, it’s only available in pdf… A Brief History of the Lethbridge-Stewarts.

Lethbridge-Stewart – News Round-Up

slider_lethbridgestewartBeen a busy old week or so for Lethbridge-Stewart. Lots of good things happening, although I can’t comment on all of them. So, this post will talk about some of the highlights which I can comment on.

First of all, as mentioned in the previous post, I’ve been interviewed on two podcasts in the last week. By the fine folks at Kasterborous, where I was joined by Hannah Haisman and Shaun Russell, and we talked exclusively about the series and a bit of the background. Secondly I was interviewed by the insane people at Nerdversity, in which I talked about almost everything, including the new series of books, plus my work on Space: 1889 & Beyond and other assorted work over the years, as well as touching on various other subjects such as Supernatural, Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, Star Trek and loads of other stuff.

Kasterborous podKast…

Nerdversity 101 podcast…

Speaking of interviews. Shaun and I were also recently interviewed by both Doctor Who Magazine and SFX Magazine, and will feature in the next issues, both released at the beginning of February. Without saying what, I can tell you that there’s an exciting little surprise for fans also featured in the next issue of DWM, so be sure to pick up an issue!

The Forgotten Son, and thus the series, will be launched in person on February 28th at The Who Shop in London, under the banner of UNIT Day. We’ll be joined by various UNIT alumni, covering all eras of the organisation — hopefully including actors, writers and, maybe, even the script editor responsible for most of the UNIT stories of the 1970s. See below for more information; flyer designed by the wonderful Sam Hunt of The Who Shop.

The book itself is going through it’s final stage of edits right now (literally as I type this I can see Shaun working on it), which means the book goes to print next week. Exciting stuff!

I can also reveal the final front cover for The Forgotten Son below, as well as an exclusive scene featuring Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart in action…

PodKast – Talking about Lethbridge-Stewart

So… Something fun has happened in the last couple of days. I’ve been interviewed on two podcasts. Curiously they’re being aired in reverse, so the one recorded first is being released second, while the one recorded second is being released first. And the first one is with the Kasterborites Christian Cawley, James McLean and Brian Terranova!

But it’s not only me. Shaun Russell, editor-in-chief of Candy Jar Books is there too, as well as Hannah Haisman… The topic of discussion? Why, Lethbridge-Stewart, of course!

http://app.stitcher.com/splayer/f/35967/36616961

A Real Gentlemen

Nicholas_Courtney_DWI never had the pleasure of meeting Nicholas Courtney, but I know many people who did. And if there is one thing you can be sure of, all of them tell you how much of a gentlemen he was. His contribution to Doctor Who cannot be exaggerated. He has been gone almost four years now, but thanks to his amazing portrayal of Brigadier Sir Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart he will never been forgotten. And so, to honour his memory on the day of his birth, I present this excerpt from my forthcoming novel, The Forgotten Son, the first book in the all-new series Lethbridge-Stewart. Every legend has a beginning, and this is his…

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A Moment in History

Nicholas Courtney: 16th December 1929 – 22nd February 2011.

 

LETHBRIDGE-STEWART – Popular Questions

slider_lethbridgestewartWell, it’s only been a few days since the series was announced, but already a lot of interest is being generated (the series even made it to Digital Spy!). With all this interest a few questions have begun circulating, so I thought I’d take a moment to address a few of them, just to clarify things.

Are they official or fan made?

The short answer is… they are official. But let me explain. No, they are not licensed by the BBC, but that’s because they don’t need to be. The BBC does not own the characters or concepts created by Mervyn Haisman & Henry Lincoln for their Doctor Who scripts. The copyright is owned by the Executor of the Haisman Literary Estate and Henry Lincoln, and we have a license with the Haisman Estate and the approval of Henry Lincoln. But yes, they are fan made, in that most of us involved in producing these books are fans, in the same way as the TV series is, the BBC novels are, and Big Finish’s output is.

Will there be eBooks?

Yes indeed. We’re even looking into setting a pre-ordering system for eBooks.

How will you do the back-story — in relation to the books and audios?

dwmr009_thespectreoflanyonmoor_1417_cover_largeOur main point of reference will be the TV series. This is the only source we will go to great lengths to not contradict. There is not a great deal of back-story for Sir Alistair on television; most of what we have learned was revealed in all the novels and audio dramas produced since 1991. Now, it is a fact that much of the novels and audios conflict (as does a lot of the TV series, come to that), and it is generally considered (and stated in both respective mediums) that they take place in separate realities, both spun-off from the prime reality of the TV series. Our books will be no different. We spin-off from the television series and are set in that reality and will not contradict what we know of Sir Alistair from that medium, however there will almost certainly be echoes of the continuity established in the novels and audios, suggesting that certain events happen in all realities, although not always in the same way. A good example will be, in most of the books and audios it is accepted that Sir Alistair was born in 1930, and we see no reason to contradict that as it fits what we’re doing and it makes Sir Alistair around the same age as Nicholas Courtney. Of course, all this said, if fans wish to tie everything together, then they are most welcome to do so. After all, that is part of the fun of being a fan, trying to make everything fit. I do it, we all do it! But as professionals we can’t be bound by continuities outside of the TV series as to do so would only inhibit and constrict what we’re creating.

Will the UNIT dating issue be dealt with?

Not directly. We’re not dealing with UNIT, but we do detail the years leading to its formation and thus fit within a certain timeline. The guidelines make it clear, for the authors, in which year the series is set (initially, that is), but they have been expressly told not to state the year within the narrative. There will be clues, both subtle and not-so, for those who wish to work it out. But we won’t be directly tackling the issue. The UNIT dating issue has existed for so long now, where’s the fun in solving it?

Will the Doctor make an appearance?

Short answer; no. It’s not within our license to use anything owned by the BBC, and that especially includes the Doctor.

Will any other companions appear?

Again, no. There are a few companions not owned by the BBC, but to use them would almost certainly muddy the water.

Candy_Jar_LS_Front_Amended2-mediumAnd my favourite question;

Will it be the ’60s-’80s Brig and UNIT or the CyberBrig?

Neither. The announcement has made it very clear that we’re dealing with Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart directly following The Web of Fear. At this point he has only met the Doctor once. He has only dealt with an alien threat once. And his entire world view has been changed by this.

So, they were a few of the most asked questions (even the last one!), and these are the official answers. We’ll explore the behind-the-scenes more in the lead-up to the release of The Forgotten Son, but for now I hope this reaches you all well. If there are any more questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to ask.

The first four books (or the first, if you wish) be can be pre-ordered directly from Candy Jar Books. All pre-orders will be shipped at least a week prior to official release.

PROJECT HUSH-HUSH Unveiled!

And finally I can reveal the secret behind Project Hush-Hush. Five months of secrecy and this is what it’s all about.

It’s with immense pride I’m able to announce that…

LETHBRIDGE-STEWART IS RETURNING

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What follows is the official press release…

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Every legend has a beginning, and for Colonel Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart it was in the London Underground.

Candy Jar Books is very proud to present Lethbridge-Stewart, a new series of novels revealing the untold story of Colonel Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart set shortly after the 1968 serial, The Web of Fear, fully licensed by the Executor of the Haisman Literary Estate, Mervyn Haisman’s granddaughter Hannah Haisman, and endorsed by Henry Lincoln.

The first series consists of:

  • The Forgotten Son by Andy Frankham-Allen
  • Horror of Det-Sen by Lance Parkin
  • The Schizoid Earth by David A McIntee
  • Mutually Assured Domination by Nick Walters.

Brigadier Sir Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart has been an essential element of Doctor Who since 1968. He was created by authors Mervyn Haisman & Henry Lincoln for the six-part Doctor Who serial, The Web of Fear. A one-off character. Until over a year later when he was brought back to Doctor Who, promoted to Brigadier and the head of UNIT. Forty-six years on and the Brigadier has become one of the most iconic characters in Doctor Who, having appeared with ten different Doctors in countless TV episodes, books, audio dramas and comic strips! The character’s death was acknowledged in the 2012 Doctor Who series starring Matt Smith, and was resurrected briefly in the 2014 series finale starring Peter Capaldi. On TV the character’s story is over, but there is so much more to tell.

Andy Frankham-Allen has been a Doctor Who fan since his childhood and serves as line editor for the series, as well as penning the opening novel. Andy is the former line editor of Untreed Reads Publishing’s series Space: 1889 & Beyond, and has penned several Doctor Who Short Trip stories for Big Finish and Candy Jar’s very own celebration of Doctor Who, Companions: Fifty Years of Doctor Who Assistants. He said: “It’s an insane privilege and responsibility to put this series together, to reveal the real story behind such a legend of Doctor Who.”

Lance Parkin has written over twenty books and audio dramas for Doctor Who since 1996, including the 35th Anniversary novel, The Infinity Doctors, and the 2008 Tenth Doctor novel, The Eyeless. He also worked on British soap Emmerdale and wrote Magic Words, the definitive biography of Alan Moore. Lance said: “Lethbridge-Stewart was always a steady presence in the Doctor’s life. Even in The Web of Fear, he instinctively trusted the Doctor from almost the moment he met him. I wrote for the character in The Dying Days, and that was the version of the Brigadier we all think of now, I think, an old soldier, semi-retired, seen it all. It’s been interesting writing for a younger, hungrier Lethbridge-Stewart – not even a Brigadier at this point in his life. It’s also been nice writing a story that’s set in the aftermath of The Web of Fear, with Lethbridge-Stewart only just starting to realise that the Earth’s facing a whole new type of enemy.”

David A McIntee has written novels for Star Trek, Final Destination and Space: 1999 and over fifteen books and audio dramas for Doctor Who since 1993, including the Brigadier-centric novel, The Face of the Enemy. David said: “To be honest it (the series) is something I’m amazed hasn’t been done before – it’s just such a natural and obvious thing. The form it’s taking is also cool because it has the flexibility to move between styles and genres – thriller, SF, horror, etc – while maintaining a definite identity. As for the Brig himself, he’s one of those characters where the casting was so perfect that it just made the character so memorable, and who (usually) feels so right.”

Nick Walters has written five novels for Doctor Who since 1998. Nick said: “After the Doctor himself the Brigadier is the best-loved character in Doctor Who. I met Nick Courtney a number of times and he really is a splendid fellow. He brought a real humanity and vulnerability to the role without compromising the essential toughness of the character. Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart is the chap you’d want on your side in a fight – any fight – and it is a real privilege to be exploring what made him into the character we came to know and love.”

Simon Williams, the man behind the cover art, is a former artist for Marvel UK having drawn for The Transformers, The Hulk, Spider-Man and Death’s Head. Simon said: “I’ve always been a big fan of Doctor Who and the Brigadier and having the opportunity to draw this iconic character is a huge privilege.”

Candy_Jar_LS_Front_Amended2-mediumHannah Haisman said: “This project has been a long-time coming. I had to be certain that I was entrusting my grandfather’s legacy to a publisher and authors who would respect what he created. Candy Jar and Andy have assembled a team that are sympathetic to the Brigadier, and these are very exciting times that we can all be proud of.”

Lethbridge-Stewart will be launched on 22nd February 2015, the fourth anniversary of Nicholas Courtney’s death, the actor behind the Brigadier. The first series of novels will be released one book per quarter throughout 2015.

The Forgotten Son is available for pre-order from the Candy Jar Book store, where you can pre-order all four titles in the Four-Book-Bundle for a special discounted price. By pre-ordering directly from Candy Jar you ensure you’ll get your copy of each title a couple of weeks before official publication.

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Now the ‘cat it out of the bag’, as Sir Alistair would say, I can talk about this series, and I will. Keep tuned for insights into the development of this series, and indeed the first novel, as well as discussions between me and the rest of the creative team behind the project. 🙂