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The Barry Newbery Signature Collection (book review).

Despite the unusual size, this is a somewhat unique book and a sure winner for any ‘Doctor Who’ fan. Barry Newbery was the first set designer on the series and worked on fourteen stories which spanned Hartnell (8), Troughton (1), Pertwee (1), Tom Baker (3) and Davison (1). Oddly, the sections aren’t in ‘Who’ order but time period, starting from the year dot in the first story, ‘An Unearthly Child’ when they go caveman. Alas, also, Newbery didn’t take any photos of ‘The Silurians’ or ‘The Awakening’ stories but the photos from the rest certainly make up for it, especially as ‘Marco Polo’ is one of the lost stories and there’s a wealth of photos from that story.

In fact, photos are the name of the game with this book. They are chock-a-block showing the sets, especially where they end and the studio begins, to miniatures and even the odd picture of Time Lords and companions. The most prevalent creature photos are the Daleks, which is quite understandable as they appeared in a couple stories. Although I haven’t seen all the books that were ever in print about ‘Doctor Who’, there has to be a fair bet that many of these will be new to the fans of the original series and with twelve available on DVD, I’m sure you Who fans out there will be using this book as a reference to compare between the two.

Photos: (c) Barry Newbery 2012, reproduced with permission

As Barry Newbery points out in the text where the five historical places were concerned, he took great pains in researching to ensure they looked right authentically and so it’s hardly surprising that kids at the time at school drew comparison to them.

This is the kind of book that needs to be looked at more than once. One can only hope that Telos has more books of this nature in the bag. Granted it is a little expensive but photo-books are never cheap to print for small publishers and the value here is in the content and rarity. Fascinating.

GF Willmetts

October 2012


Photos: (c) Barry Newbery 2012, reproduced with permission.

(pub: Telos. 96 page illustrated small half-size softcover. Price: £24.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-84583-074-8)

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Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 21 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

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