November 10 on TV

40 years ago today, Carla Lane’s Butterflies debuted on BBC 2

Butterflies-1978
Butterflies (1978-1983)

Butterflies (1978-1983) is a British sitcom series written by Carla Lane that was broadcast on BBC2.

The situation is the day-to-day life of the Parkinson family in a bittersweet style. There are both traditional comedy sources (Ria’s cooking, family squabbles) and more unusual sources such as Ria’s unconsummated relationship with the outwardly-successful Leonard (Bruce Montague). Ria (Wendy Craig) is still in love with her husband, Ben (Geoffrey Palmer), and has raised two potentially fine sons (Nicholas Lyndhurst and Andrew Hall), yet finds herself dissatisfied and in need of something more. Throughout the series Ria searches for that “something more” and finds some solace in her unconventional friendship with Leonard.

In the first episode, an expository discussion between Ria and Leonard alludes to the significance of the series’ title: “We are all kids chasing butterflies. You see it, you want it, you grab it, and there it is, all squashed in your hand.” She adds, “I am one of the few lucky ones, I have a pleasant house, a pleasant man and two pleasant sons. My butterfly didn’t get squashed.” Ria’s husband Ben collects and studies butterflies.

 

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October 17, 1988, 20:00 – Wyatt’s Watchdogs on BBC One

Wyatt’s Watchdogs

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Wyatt’s Watchdogs (1988) title card [Wikipedia]
Wyatt’s Watchdogs is a 30-minute BBC1 situation comedy that starred Brian Wilde and Trevor Bannister. The six-episode series was transmitted in the autumn of 1988 from October 17. The music was composed by Ronnie Hazlehurst. The series was primarily devised as a vehicle for Wilde after he had left the cast of Last of the Summer Wine three years prior. Although initially getting passable ratings, the BBC felt that the sitcom had not really caught on, and it was dropped after one series; Wilde returned to Last of the Summer Wine in 1990.

[Wikipedia*]

Radio Times

October 17, 1988 at 20:00

“One Big , One Not So Big”

When the retired Major Wyatt hears that his sister Edwina’s house has been burgled in broad daylight, he decides that the time has come to take action as a citizen against the rising tide of crime. Without bothering to wait for proper police help, he sets about forming his own Neighbourhood Watch.

[BBC Genome*]

October 16, 1958, 17:00 – Blue Peter

Children’s Television presents: Blue Peter

BBC Television, October 16, 1958 at 17.00

Toys, model railways, games, stories, cartoons.
A new weekly programme for younger viewers with Christopher Trace and Leila Williams.

[BBC Genome*]

Blue_Peter-Christopher_Trace-Leila_Williams-BBC
Christopher Trace and Leila Williams [BBC]
*Prof Nostalgia and the20thcentury.today are not responsible for external links

October 12, 1988 on BBC 1: Doctor Who

 

Remembrance_of_the_daleks
Doctor Who “Remembrance of the Daleks” (1988), title card [Doctor Who Collectors’ Wiki]

Remembrance of the Daleks

Background

Remembrance of the Daleks was the first serial of season 25 of Doctor Who. The story’s setting brought the Doctor back to 76 Totter’s Lane in the year 1963, where the series began in An Unearthly Child.

Radio Times

19:35 – Doctor Who

“Remembrance of the Daleks” Part 2

Second part of a four-part adventure by Ben Aaronovitch

Starring Sylvester McCoy

London, 1963: the Doctor wants to bury the past – before it buries him…

Cast

  • The Doctor: Sylvester McCoy
  • Ace: Sophie Aldred
  • Headmaster: Michael Sheard
  • Kaufman: Derek Keller
  • Girl: Jasmine Breaks
  • Mike: Dursley McLinden
  • Gilmore: Simon Williams
  • Rachel: Pamela Salem
  • Allison: Karen Gledhill
  • John: Joseph Marcell
  • Martin: William Thomas
  • Ratcliffe: George Sewell
  • Vicar: Peter Halliday
  • Dalek operator: John Scott Martin
  • Dalek operator: Hugh Spight
  • Dalek operator: Tony Starr
  • Dalek operator: Cy Town
  • Voices: Roy Skelton
  • Voices: Royce Mills
  • Voices: Brian Miller
  • Voices: John Leeson

*Prof Nostalgia and The 20th Century Today is not responsible for content on external sites.

October 10, 1968 on BBC1: Top of the Pops

Top_of_the_Pops-YouTube
Top of the Pops (1964-2006), February 1968 title [YouTube]

19:30 – Top of the Pops

Discs-Stars-News from this week’s TOP TWENTY

Introduced by Alan Freeman, with the Top of the Pops Orchestra

THIS WEEK’s NUMBER ONE SINGLE:

“Those Were The Days” by Mary Hopkin


*Prof Nostalgia and The 20th Century Today is not responsible for content on external sites.

K9

K9_in_the_TARDIS
K9

K9 was the designation given to a series of intelligent, dog-like robots who served as companions of Professor Marius, the Fourth Doctor, Leela, Romana, and Sarah Jane Smith.

K9 Mark I, II, III, and IV addressed whoever was directing them as “Master” or “Mistress” depending upon gender, and used the formal “affirmative” and “negative” rather than “yes” and “no”. They were programmed to be both loyal and logical, with a penchant for taking orders literally, almost to a fault. Their striped collars mirrored the Fourth Doctor’s trademark scarf.

K9 had a personality very consistent across the models with some contact with the Doctor. He was polite and formal, with pedantry bordering on condescension. Though he often displayed feelings such as sorrow and self-regard, he often stated that he had not been programmed to have emotions.

He did not use contractions such as “you’ve” for “you have” and addressed others by titles such as “Master”, “Mistress”, “Doctor-Master” (to refer to the Doctor) or “Young Master” (Adric). Though he did not seem to resent his subordinate status, he sided with the Doctor’s companions over the Doctor and showed a dark side, regarding other artificial intelligences with contempt.

With his great intelligence, he had a tendency to bore people with facts and did not stop immediately when asked, as he did to Leela on Pluto. When being told that he would have to stay behind in the TARDIS, K9 often argued, giving the Doctor reasons why he should go such as “he would be a good dog.” K9 always wanted to assist the Doctor.

K9 Mark I

Professor Frederick Marius, who invented the first K9 in the year 5000 while working on the asteroid K4067, described him as “my best friend and constant companion.” Marius had a dog on Earth, but weight requirements did not allow him to bring his real dog into space, so he built K9. Marius used his own medical computer, a state-of-the-art intraresponsive brain app, protective anti-radiation cladding, probes, a laser scalpel, a vision and voice box and two scanning antennas.

The Professor offered K9 to the Fourth Doctor as the same weight requirements made him unable to take Mark I back to Earth. After adventures with Leela and the Doctor, Mark I decided to stay on Gallifrey with his “mistress”.

Appearances

  • The Invisible Enemy (from Part 2)
  • Image of the Fendahl
  • The Sun Makers
  • Underworld
  • The Invasion of Time

K9 Mark II

The Doctor obtained or constructed at least one backup model of K9. Immediately after leaving Mark I behind with Leela, he unpacked K9 Mark II. This version of K9 accompanied the Doctor and his new companion on their quest to locate the segments of the Key to Time.

This K9 exhibited the ability to sense and warn others of danger. He was also more mobile than his predecessor.

K9 travelled to E-Space with the Fourth Doctor and Romana II, where they met Adric. Damaged by the time winds, K9 Mark II could not cross back into N-Space with the Doctor. He decided to stay behind at the Gateway with Romana II to help her free the remaining Tharils from slavery.

Appearances

  • The Invasion of Time (Part 6, boxed)
  • The Ribos Operation
  • The Pirate Planet
  • The Stones of Blood
  • The Androids of Tara
  • The Armageddon Factor
  • Destiny of the Daleks
  • The Creature from the Pit
  • Nightmare of Eden
  • The Horns of Nimon
  • The Leisure Hive
  • Meglos
  • Full Circle
  • State of Decay
  • Warriors’ Gate

K9 Mark III

A third model, K9 Mark III (again either obtained or constructed by the Doctor), was shipped in 1978 to Sarah Jane Smith at the home she had shared with her Aunt Lavinia in South Croydon during her companionship of the Third and Fourth Doctors (A Girl’s Best Friend).

After several adventures, K9 Mark III slowly began breaking down and eventually ended up deactivated in a cardboard box in Sarah’s attic. When the Tenth Doctor met Sarah Jane, he reactivated K9 and made temporary repairs. However Mark III ended up sacrificing himself whilst fighting strange, bat-like creatures.

As a heartbroken Sarah Jane watched the Tenth Doctor depart, the TARDIS dematerialised to reveal Mark IV. K9 said the Doctor rebuilt him with “new omniflexible hyperlink capabilities”.

Appearances

  • A Girl’s Best Friend (K9 and Company)
  • The Five Doctors

Find out more*

Source of information, pictures etc is the TARDIS Data Core* unless stated otherwise.

*Prof Nostalgia & the20thcentury.today are not responsible for external links.