Monday, 3 July 2017

Doctor Who Vs. We're Doomed! The Dad's Army Story

In the same vein as The Road 
to Coronation Street (2010) and
An Adventure in Space and Time
(2013), this drama chronicled the
conception of another iconic British TV programme, this time Dad's Army.
In 1967, actor Jimmy Perry (1923-
2016) submitted a script (based
on his time in the Home Guard,
entitled Fighting Tigers) to Michael Mills, Head of Comedy at the BBC. Perry and his friend David Croft (1922-2011) were commissioned
to write a pilot episode then a full
series. Dad's Army launched in July 1968.
Perry and Croft (portrayed here by Paul Ritter and Richard Dormer) assembled
a now legendary ensemble cast - Arthur Lowe (played by John Sessiosn), John
Le Mesurier (Julian Sands), John Laurie (Ralph Riach), Arnold Ridley (Michael
Cochrane), Clive Dunn (Mark Heap), James Beck (Kevin Bishop), Kieran
Hodgson (Ian Lavender), and Bill Pertwee (Shane Ritchie).
Dad's Army was watched by over 18 million viewers at its peak and became
one of the best-loved and most successful British sitcoms ever.
The show endured for nine years, and spawned two films (1971 and 2016),
a radio series (1974-76), two stage shows (1975 and 2007). and even a
musical (2004).
Croft and Perry later conceived other hit period pieces, It Ain't Half Hot Mum
(1974-81) and Hi-De-Hi (1980-88). Croft also collaborated with Jeremy Lloyd
and they created Are You Being Served? (1972-85) and Allo' Allo' (1982-92).
Originally shown in December 2015 and repeated on Gold yesterday, We're 
Doomed! also featured Keith Allen and six Doctor Who cast connections:

  • Big Finish actor Cochrane was Charles Cranleigh in Black Orchid and Redvers Fenn-Cooper in Ghost Light, then voiced Lieutenant Colonel Brook for No Man's Land (2006), Murgat for Brotherhood of the Daleks (2008), Colonel Hugh Spindleton for The Trail of the White Worm and The Oseidon Adventure (both 2012), Professor Chivers for Destiny of the Doctor: The Time Machine (2013), and Geralk for both The Fate of Krelos and Return to Telos (2015)
  • Sessions  provided the voice of Gus for Mummy on the Orient Express, and voiced Tannis for Death Comes to Time, Mozart for 100: My Own Private Wolfgang (BF, 2007), Roland for Castle of Fear (BF, 2009)
  • Hodgson voiced Findel for Last of the Cybermen, Arin and Dennis for The Last Adventure: The Red House, Alam and Hilsee for The Early Adventures: The Isos Network, Bennus for The War Doctor: Only the Monstrous (all 2015), and Klick Chervain for The Skin of the Sleek  and The Thief Who Stole Time (both 2017)
  • Heap voiced the Middleman for The Middle (BF, 2017)
  • Harry Peacock (Mills) was Proper Dave in Silence in the Library and Forest of Dead
  • Roy Hudd (Bud Flanagan) voiced Max Miller for Pier Pressure (BF, 2006)

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