Saturday, 11 July 2015

Doctor Who Vs. Coronation Street, Part 9: 1983-1989

The Street's longest-serving producer, Bill Podmore, stood down in late 1982, just as the new edgy, soap opera 
Brookside launched on the fledgling Channel 4. Although the rival show never matched Corrie in popularity or ratings, the Liverpool-based series did make the Street appear dated again.
Mervyn Watson's producership would result in much behind-the-scenes turmoil, but the Deirdre Barlow and Mike Baldwin affair storyline proved to be the most successful to date. 
By 1985, many of the programme's core cast had left,
including all of the original cast (bar William Roache), then
the BBC launched its own flagship serial drama, the twice-
weekly EastEnders. Despite retaining its audience, Corrie 
was accused of being old fashioned yet again, and another 
new producer, John Temple, oversaw a makeover.
The return of Podmore for a third and final stint as producer in 1987 led to even more changes, and the most significant additions to the show came in 1989 with the introduction of a third episode then an omnibus edition. As the decade ended, Corrie was back at its peak with viewers and critics alike. The death of Alan Bradley (Mark Eden) in December 1989 was seen by almost 27 million viewers, the highest ever figure for the soap, and still the ninth most watched UK broadcast in TV history.
These seven years on the Street featured David Brierly (as Harold in episode 2359) and another twenty Doctor Who cast and crew connections:
  • Micheal Bilton (Pearson) played Charles de Teligny in The Massacre, Collins in Pyramids of Mars, and a Time Lord in The Deadly Assassin
  • Michael Goldie (Statham) was Jack Craddock in The Dalek Invasion of Earth, and Elton Laleham in The Wheel in Space 
  • Sam Kelly (Challis) voiced Eugene Tacitus for Big Finish's The Holy Terror (2000), and Acheron in Return to the Web Planet (BF, 2007)
  • Cory Pulman (Mandy) was Kathleen Dudman in The Curse of Fenric
  • Ron Donachie (Schofield) was a Steward in Tooth and Claw
  • Nigel Gregory (Mills) was Sergeant Vince Wilson in K9 and Company
  • David Ashton (Birchall) was Kendron in Timelash
  • Big Finish artist Susan Brown (Connie here; and Maureen, 2006) voiced Mary for 100: Bedtime Story (2007), Alice Withers for The Eternal Summer, Maud for Castle of Fear, both Mrs Withers and Mrs Sowerby for Plague of the Daleks (all 2009), Margaret for Deimos and The Resurrection of Mars, Eleanor Harvey for Return of the Krotons, Chief Engineer and Chanel for The Song of the Megaptera, Babs for Prison in Space (all 2010), and Kastrella for the Death Match (2015) - she also played Bridget Spears in Torchwood: Children of Earth
  • director (of episodes 2761 and 2785) Gerald Blake also helmed The Abominable Snowmen and The Invasion of Time
  • Sarah Lancashire (Wendy here; and Raquel Woolstenhulme Watts, 1991-96) was Miss Foster (pictured) in Partners in Crime
  • Simon Rouse (Farrell here; Woodson, 2013) was Hindle in Kinda, then voiced John Kincaid for The Witch from the Well (BF, 2011), and Drang for both The Paradox Planet The Legacy of Death (BF, 2016)                    
  • Kenneth Waller (Watts) was Hedges in (part 2 of) The Invisible Enemy
  • Mona Hammond (Mrs. Armitage) was Rita-Anne in Rise of the Cybermen
  • Rob Dixon (Roscoe) voiced Reggie Mead for Project: Twilight (BF, 2001) and Sergeant Wood for No Man's Land (BF, 2006)
  • Jenny Funnell (WPC Morgan) voiced Veronica Buchman for Wirrn Isle (BF, 2012), and Reaver for The King of Sontar (BF, 2014)
  • Michael Sheard (Dabner) is another prolific guest actor with seven TV roles over 35 years - he was Rhos in The Ark: The Plague, Dr. Roland Summers in The Mind of Evil, Laurence Scarman in Pyramids of Mars, Lowe in The Invisible Enemy, Mergrave in Castrovalva, the Headmaster in Remembrance of the Daleks, and he voiced Orsino for The Stones of Venice (BF, 2001)
  • Julia Deakin (Secretary here; Brenda, 2003) voiced Harriet Griffin for Terror Firma (BF, 2005)
  • Eric Potts (Dearing here; Saxton, 1996; Council Official, 1998; and Diggory Compton, 2005/06) was Oliver Charles in Aliens of London
  • Rod Arthur (Foreman here; Blood Donor, 1991) was Mr. Parsons in School Reunion
  • Ling Tai (Student) was an uncredited Tourist in The Leisure Hive (1), a Seabase Crewmember in Warriors of the Deep, then Shou Yuing in Battlefield

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