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Doctor Who - Upcoming 2011 Classic Series DVD Plans Includes Fleetwood Mac Tune on 'Spearhead' Reissue

Just one of the MANY vintage tales of the Doctor that are expected in the coming year

Posted by David Lambert
Doctor Who - Story #051: Spearhead From Space is full of firsts among the classic BBC sci-fi program. It was the first episode aired in the '70s, and the first in color. It introduced Jon Pertwee as the 3rd Doctor, as well as Caroline John as new Companion Liz Shaw. It may have been the third outing for Nicholas Courtney as UNIT's Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart, but it was Courtney's first episode as a regular cast member. It was the beginning of the Doctor's exile on Earth, of course, as well as being the first story to introduce those plastic-based aliens, The Autons, and the power which animates them: the Nestene Consciousness. Also, it was one of the first three Doctor Who stories ever to be released on DVD in North America: the title originally streeted in the United States and Canada (along with Story #090: The Robots Of Death and Story #130: The Five Doctors: Special Edition) on September 11, 2001...a.k.a. "9/11."

Word has been going around recently that Spearhead From Space will be coming back to DVD world-wide sometime later this year, as one of the "revisited" DVD titles that the Doctor Who Restoration Team is working on to enhance from the previous on-disc effort. It's also said that this new version will come out at the same time as another highly-wanted (and never-before-on-DVD) Pertwee tale, Story #055: Terror of the Autons. Word came down in the latest British Doctor Who Magazine that fans can expect this released as a "Mannequin Mania" set in the U.K., and sold separately in the U.S.A. and Canada. Other upcoming classic titles to look for in 2011 include Story #074: Planet of the Spiders (Pertwee); the final two Peter Davison stories for DVD: Story #132: The Awakening and Story #133: Frontios; a Hartnell arc called Story #025: The Gunfighters (may be released at the same time as The Awakening); Story #149: Paradise Towers (McCoy); Story #053: The Ambassadors of Death (more Pertwee) and Story #095: The Sun Makers (Tom Baker). These join the already-reported release of Story #060: Day of the Daleks (Pertwee), and re-releases ("revisitations") of Story #037: The Tomb Of The Cybermen (Troughton), Story #065: The Three Doctors (Pertwee, Troughton, Hartnell) and another "first wave" title: Story #090: The Robots Of Death (Tom Baker). Other titles have previously been mentioned as being planned for this year as well, of course, such as Story #148: Time and The Rani (McCoy). Of course, plans could have changed by now, too. Still, we're expecting all of these sooner or later, until and unless we hear otherwise! In North America (Region 1), each title is expected to be sold separately.

This is all great news, of course, although no official announcements from traditional studio sources have come in for them yet (which is why we don't have dates, package art, etc. for you yet). Late last week our friends at the Doctor Who News Page posted these titles, along with an early list of extras being planned for each one (and they will probably all turn out to be accurate, but we'll bring you the finalized list of bonus materiel for these titles as each one is officially announced). At this point, though, you might be wondering why we wrote so much at the beginning of this story about Spearhead From Space. The answer to that also lies with the great folks at the Doctor Who News Page! This morning they passed along word that a song missing from the original DVD release due to rights issues will be restored to the episode this time around! Fleetwood Mac's "Oh Well, Part 1" (click here if you need a reminder of how the tune from 1969 goes) was in the original broadcast during the scene at the Auto Plastics plant, which showed dolls being produced. The Doctor Who News Page reports that the rights to put this song on the DVD soundtrack are covered internationally, so - unlike a Beatles song in The Chase - the fans in the U.S. and Canada will get to enjoy it this time around.

Stay tuned and we'll bring you further developments about this title, and all the others, as the BBC, DVD manufacturer 2|entertain and North American distributor Warner Home Video make additional information available!

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