Doctor Who News Scream of the Shalka

Published on September 11th, 2013 | by Danny_Weasel

Simon Clark and The Shalka Sequel That Never Was

September 16th brings the release of one of Doctor Who‘s most unique adventures; Scream of the Shalka, featuring the alternative Ninth Doctor, Richard E. Grant.

Scream of the Shalka

At the time of Shalka‘s inception in 2003 it was believed that the animation, which was broadcast on the fledgeling BBC website, would be the first in an ongoing series that was to be the shows re-birth. But two months before it aired, the BBC announced that the show was to return to TV instead and after only releasing one adventure the Flash animations were unceremoniously scrapped.

But it seems that is not the end of the tale, for there is more, in script form at least. As horror author (and the man behind 2004′s The Dalek Factor novella) Simon Clark revealed to SFX;

I was told about the animated Doctor Who, and asked to submit a very brief outline. They liked what they saw and I was then asked to submit a more detailed synopsis. On the basis of this I was given a contract to write the scripts

The serial, to be titled Blood of the Robots, would have seen the show head into a darker place not too dissimilar to that of the classic Hinchcliffe and Holmes era of the 70′s

There would have been some frightening elements, and a dash of gruesomeness too… There was also scope to have things happen in the animated Doctor Who that couldn’t have been done in the classic TV episodes.

By the time Scream of the Shalka hit the Internet the next story was already well on its way to being completed. Clark states that he had finished the entire storyline and three of the six scripts. When asked if there was any chance of the story ever seeing the light of day he replied;

I guess that isn’t in my hands, but… It would just be a case of blowing away an accumulation of interstellar dust and work could begin on completing Blood Of The Robots.

Would you want to see more, or like Peter Cushing before him, do you think that the “Shalka Doctor” should be left as a stray thread in the web of time? As always, leave us a comment and let us know your feelings on the possibility of more from the animated Doctor.

Personally, I think with the classic DVD range beginning to slow down now everything possible (barring the forthcoming Moonbase and Underwater Menace and -fingers crossed- The Crusades) has been released, the BBC could do far worse than bring back the alternative Doctor and run with the series in the same way that Big Finish did with their amazing Unbound range.

Scream of the Shalka DVD is released on 16th September and you can pre-order your copy from Amazon UK for just £13.97!

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13 Responses to Simon Clark and The Shalka Sequel That Never Was

  1. avatar Matthew Kresal says:

    I’d be up for more stories with the REG Doctor. Maybe, given REG’s recent appearances in the TV show, Big Finish might be able to do a series of audios?

  2. avatar dailypop says:

    What a nugget of information this is!!

    Personally I would be interested in seeing where the alt 9th Doctor can go.


    • To be honest, SFX pipped us to this information as once Simon Clark’s name was in our earlier Paul Cornell interview about Shalka we were going to get in touch and find out more ourselves.

      Still, all credit to SFX :)

  3. avatar Francesco says:

    Interesting! But I’d rather prefer to see some other animated reconstruction of lost episodes, before…

  4. avatar Gareth says:

    There is a market for animated alternative Doctor Who as well as animated missing TV stories. However the problem will probably be return on investment if it is only distributed straight to DVD. BBC Worldwide should consider partnering with another company to do it.

    Worldwide did state recently that it has not made as much revenue due to lower TV output so this may be a good source of alternative revenue as the classic DVD releases dry up.

  5. avatar TimeChaser says:

    I would prefer animated lost stories as well, try to keep the canon from getting any more muddled.

    Frankly, what I would love for the BBC to do would be to reprint all the old novelizations, and both Virgin and BBC novels since the ’90s. With all the DVDs, blu-rays, audios and comics available, why should we be shut out from the wealth of the series’ writings. Target, NAs, MAs, PDAs, and EDAs… all should be republished! In both print and e-book format.

  6. avatar Ian says:

    I think the DVD range will be kept occupied with all those missing stories they’ve found. ;)


  7. I think it would be wonderful if the Shalka Doctor returned for another story or 2! It SHOULD happen ;) Make it so!

  8. avatar vortexter says:

    I would love to see other stories in the series also. It depends I suppose on how well Shalka sells.

  9. avatar Endy says:

    Am I alone in thinking the artwork especially the Doctor is well to be honest not very good.
    He is also considerably less likeable than Colin Bakers Doctor at the start which takes a bit of doing.
    In defence the wonderful Colin Baker overcame terrible writing and an awful costume to become another great Doctor so there always is hope for this.
    I however would sooner they had done some eight Doctor stories to the standard of the DWM artwork and Big Finish.
    It is only my opinion and I respect all those who loved this. I will of course get the DVD for completeness.


    • I don’t think there is anything wrong with the artwork. Distinctive and idiosyncratic; exactly what the producers would have been expecting given they contracted the work to Cosgrove Hall.

      As for the characterization, “at the start” is the key; this Doctor develops as the story progresses, a little like Eleven in The Snowmen…

    • avatar John Miller says:

      The artwork/animation also had to be something that the average person with internet connection could watch in 2003. And I thoroughly enjoyed the REG Doctor, and was upset when he was first canceled just as things were getting going, and then supposedly removed from the “canon”(oh dear) entirely. I’ve read interviews with Cornell where he said they’d mapped out a whole story arc for the REG Doctor. I would love to see not only Blood of the Robots, but also whatever other stories were being worked on at the time.

      ‘As for his future…he has three ninth incarnations. I’ve never seen anything like it.’

      Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to see what Marnal did. Why?

  10. avatar Peter Stenlake says:

    I too would love to see Simon Clark’s story for the Richard E Grant Doctor completed as a straight to DVD animated story – I’m really intrigued to know where the Shalka production team were going with their Doctor. Come on BBC worldwide, here is a future animation project for you

    By the way, I think Cavan’s Scott’s text story with the Shalka Doctor is still available on the archived BBC Dr Who website – it’s a while since I looked, but they tend not to delete stuff

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