Saturday, 4 March 2017

Doctor Who Vs. Agatha Christie's Miss Marple: The Christmas Specials

Despite many attempts, faithful adaptations of the 
Queen of Crime's sedate Miss Marple stories proved 
elusive, unlike the author's Poirot mysteries. 
Gracie Fields was the unlikely star of a live CBS 
broadcast of A Murder Is Announced in 1956, whilst Margaret Rutherford's popular cinema incarnation 
strayed from the literary source.
The final three mysteries the BBC's own Miss Marple 
series were produced when Joan Hickson agreed to 
reprise her definitive portrayal of Christie's creation, 
which finally enabled the Corporation to finally adapt 
all twelve original Marple novels - published between
1930 and 1976. 
Hickson died in 1998, aged 92. Then from 2004 to
2013, ITV Studios and WGBH Boston co-produced
their own (less faithful) series of Marple dramas.
A Caribbean Mystery was repeated again on the
Alibi channel today, and the three specials (all produced by George Gallaccio) featured a total of twenty-six Doctor Who cast and crew connections:


A Caribbean Mystery (UK TX: Christmas Day 1989/Published 1964)
  • T P McKenna (Dr. Grahame) played Captain Cook in The Greatest Show in the Galaxy
  • Big Finish actor Adrian Lukis (Kendal) voiced Bragg for Cobwebs (2010), Byzan for The Children of Seth (2011), Professor Jeffrey Broderick for Counter Measures 1 (2012), Harvey Marsh for The Justice of Jalxar, and Sigmund Freud for Jago & Litefoot 6 (both 2013)
  • Sophie Ward (Molly) voiced the Storyteller for Serpent Crest: Aladdin Time (AudioGo, 2011)
  • Sheila Ruskin (Evelyn) was Kassia in The Keeper of Traken
  • production designer Don Giles and costume designer Colin Lavers both worked The Power of Kroll - Lavers also designed for Four to Doomsday, The King's Demons and The Five Doctors
  • production manager David Mason was line producer on The Impossible AstronautDay of the Moon and The Angels Take Manhattan
  • make-up designer Vivien Riley began her television career as an assistant on The Masque of Mandragora
  • series film recordist Malcolm Campbell worked on film sound for The Caves of Androzani and The Twin Dilemma
They Do It With Mirrors (UK TX: December 29 1991/Pub. 1952)
  • Faith Brook (Ruth) was Flast in Attack of the Cybermen
  • Christopher Villiers (Alex) was Hugh Fitzwilliam in The King's Demons, Professor Moorhouse in Mummy on the Orient Express, and voiced Cacothis for Absolution (BF, 2007)
  • Matthew Cottle (Gregg) voiced Paine for Doom Coalition (BF, 2015), Hargreaves for Aquitaine (2016), and Ben Donelly for UNIT: Encounters (2017)
  • series cinematographer John Walker was a film cameraman on nine stories, from Horror of Fang Rock to Revelation of the Daleks
  • Christine Walmesley-Cotham was also make-up designer on The Ribos Operation and The Horns of Nimon
  • production manager Pennie Bloomfield was an AFM on Attack of the Cybermen
The Mirror Crack'd From Side to Side 
(UK TX: December 27 1992/Pub. 1962)
  • Claire Bloom (Marina Gregg) played the Woman in The End of Time
  • Judy Cornwell (Heather) was Maddy in Paradise Towers
  • Rhoda Lewis (Mrs Brogan) was Marta in State of Decay
  • Christopher Good (Rev. Hawes) was Morgan in The Beast Below
  • John Croft (Inch) was Tom Girton in The Daemons
  • series film editor Bernard Ashby edited Arc of Infinity too
  • Juley Harding was also production assistant on Black Orchid and The Caves of Androzani
  • Alan Spalding was production designer on Revelation of the Daleks too
  • make-up designer Suzanne Jansen also began her television career as an assistant on The Masque of Mandragora
  • Judy Pepperdine was costume designer on Warriors of the Deep too
  • Nick Barnett was the props buyer on Ghost Light too

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