Published on September 11th, 2011 | by Scott Varnham
Killing The Doctor Before It Was Cool
Before River was brainwashed into killing the Doctor, there was Turlough. If you’re tired of this year’s Doctor-killing arc, or “The River Song Show” as some of the guys here on Kasterborous have dubbed it, you might be interested to read this lengthy interview with Mark “Turlough” Strickson.
It covers a great deal of ground about the years since he left Doctor Who and his move into television production, as well as the typical producer cagey-ness about his new project. Amusingly, he starts off the interview (conducted over Skype, a sign of the times if ever there was one) by saying that his mother prefers the RTD-era onwards to her own son’s work in the show.
Now, I can’t claim to be a big fan of his work, since I have seen exactly one serial with him in his companion role (Resurrection Of The Daleks) but it still makes for interesting reading. I didn’t even know that he’d gone into television production before I read this but was absolutely astounded to discover that he made the career of the late Steve Irwin by producing the show that shot him to stardom. (Incidentally, it’s probably a good idea to stay away from me if you see me at a Who convention, as I love trivia like this and will keep on using it.)
It is also interesting if you’re interested in his work for Big Finish and want to know more about what went on behind the scenes of his era of Doctor Who. For example:
The BBC rehearsal rooms, at the time, were on a traffic island in North Acton in the West of London .You couldn’t walk to a shop. There was nothing there.
He also notes the rather obvious problem of having too many characters and too little for them to do, while his main role was to attempt to kill the Doctor:
The problem with that is that within a 25 minute program and you’ve got the Doctor and a female assistant and a baddie and another character like Turlough you really haven’t got time for it.