‘Myth Makers: Sarah Sutton and Peter Grimwade’ (DVD)

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‘MYTH MAKERS: SARAH SUTTON AND PETER GRIMWADE’

Please feel free to comment on my review.

Sarah Sutton and Peter Grimwade on DVD

This was my first and my favourite of the ‘Myth Makers’ series.

I knew about this DVD when looking through the pages of ‘Doctor Who Magazine’ issues in 2012. When it came to purchasing the ‘Wirrn: Race Memory’ CD from Galaxy 4, it was an opportunity for me to purchase this DVD too. I’m a massive Nyssa/Sarah Sutton fan and I didn’t want to miss out on this.

This DVD contains two interview features with two stars from the world of BBC TV’s ‘Doctor Who’. The first is with Sarah Sutton who plays Nyssa in ‘Doctor Who’ with Peter Davison’s Fifth Doctor. The second is with Peter Grimwade who was a writer/director in the early years of John Nathan-Turner’s era in the 1980s.

The Sarah Sutton interview was the highlight for me on this DVD. I sometimes watch Sarah’s interview before going to conventions. I’ve had the ‘Myth Makers: Sarah Sutton and Peter Grimwade’ DVD cover signed by the lovely Sarah Sutton at the ‘Pandorica 2015’ convention in Bristol, September, 2015.

Both the Sarah Sutton and Peter Grimwade interviews are given introductions by Nicholas Briggs and producer/director Keith Barnfather. Nick Briggs regularly interviews the stars of ‘Doctor Who’ on these ‘Myth Maker’ DVDs and it’s great to see him being younger during the 1980/90s for these DVDs.

There are also biographies of Sarah Sutton and Peter Grimwade given on this DVD which are enjoyable to read. They give more insight on who Sarah and Peter were in their careers and lives.


‘MYTH MAKERS: SARAH SUTTON’

Having met Sarah already at conventions, I was pretty excited and nervous to watch this interview.

This ‘Myth Makers’ feature has two interviews of Sarah combined into one, both conducted by Nicholas Briggs. The first was filmed at Harrison Rocks in 1986 and the second was at a London studio in 1994.

According to Nick Briggs in the introduction, the 1986 interview was the first time he met Sarah. Lately, Sarah has worked with Nick on the Big Finish audios and are clearly very good friends today.

I loved seeing Sarah being interviewed by Nick in 1986 at Harrison Rocks. It was fun to watch them both walking around the locations of ‘Castrovalva’, making jokes and remarks during the interview.

Sarah gave Nick a very strange challenge at the end of that interview. She asked him to climb up Harrison’s Rocks like she and Janet did. Nick took on the challenge, but it was all a mean trick by her.

I asked Sarah why she asked Nick Briggs to climb up Harrison’s Rocks. She told me it’s because she was a mean person. I’m sure Sarah’s not a mean person in real life as she comes across as nice and lovely.

I equally loved seeing Sarah interviewed by Nick in 1994 at the London studio where there had displays of familiar monster costumes. This included a Terileptil’s head; a Cyberman and a Vanir suit.

The second interview with Sarah was recorded a year after ‘Dimensions in Time’. I liked it when the 1994 interview cuts to and from the 1986 one as Sarah and Nick watched it on the little TV monitor.

It was nice to see Sarah’s career in ‘Doctor Who’ chronicled from beginning to end from ‘The Keeper to Traken’ to ‘Terminus’. I also liked the mentions of her other TV works such as ‘The Moon Stallion’.

It was interesting to see how Sarah’s personal life was touched upon. This included her marriage to her husband and having her daughter Hannah at various points in her life in both the interviews she did.

One of my favourite moments is when Sarah mentions her daughter Hannah watching ‘Dimensions in Time’. Hannah’s favourite bit is when she sees her ‘mummy being chased by monsters’ which I liked.

I also liked how Sarah mentions her hobbies/interests that include flying a hot air balloon and a Tiger Moth plane (which she did recently). Sarah also loves her holidays in Africa as she sometimes goes to Kenya.

In both interviews, Sarah demonstrates her honesty especially when it comes to conventions. She enjoys going to conventions, but makes it clear that she doesn’t go to every convention these days.

Sarah mentions enjoying working with fellow actors in the series like Peter Davison; Janet Fielding; Matthew Waterhouse and Mark Strickson. She clearly found it hard work working with Tom Baker.

I liked it when Sarah mentions her favourite TV stories including ‘The Keeper of Traken’; ‘Earthshock’ and ‘Black Orchid’. She clearly didn’t like ‘Time-Flight’ as she didn’t understand what the story was about.

This Sarah Sutton ‘Myth Makers’ interview was a treat and I liked Nick Briggs interviewing her. Sarah is a lovely person, both in real life and on the screen. I’m so pleased I got to see this classic interview with Sarah.

I’ve seen Sarah interviewed through the ‘Wine & Dine’ series on YouTube and I’ve conducted my own interview with Sarah at the ‘Bournemouth Film and Comic Con’ in August 2015. But I’m very fond of this interview here.

‘Myth Makers: Sarah Sutton’ rating – 10/10


‘MYTH MAKERS: PETER GRIMWADE’

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This was an interesting interview to watch of a very interesting writer/director in ‘Doctor Who’.

Peter Grimwade had directed four ‘Doctor Who’ stories including ‘Full Circle’; ‘Logopolis’; ‘Kinda’ and ‘Earthshock’. He also wrote the three stories ‘Time-Flight’; ‘Mawdryn Undead’ and ‘Planet of Fire’.

I had seen excerpts of this interview with Peter in ‘Doctor Who’ DVD documentaries for his stories. This interview was recorded in 1987. Peter sadly passed away in 1990 after this interview was made.

I didn’t know much about Peter before this interview and it was interesting to discover more on what he was like. It was a very pleasant interview with Peter conducted by Nick Briggs at his house.

It was clear beforehand that Peter was a very intense director when working with actors on the stories he worked on. It was interesting that Peter wanted to be a writer first before becoming a director.

I liked how Peter expresses his frustration on how the stories he’s written don’t match his expectations by other directors. This is clear (although not mentioned here) concerning ‘Time-Flight’.

It was interesting learning how Peter started his career ambitions with being a writer, working on shows like ‘Z Cars’. This was when he was an assistant floor manager on ‘Doctor Who’ in the 1970s.

Most of the interview is conducted in Peter’s living room, before he takes Nick to visit his study in the attic. It was fun to watch and it was amusing to see the number of cats Peter had in his house.

Sarah Sutton makes an appearance in this interview with Peter Grimwade. I was thrilled to bits as I thought I’d seen the last of Sarah, as she reads extracts from Peter’s books in this interview of his.

Sarah is clearly a good narrator. I loved it when she read some of Peter’s Target ‘Doctor Who’ novels. This included ‘Time-Flight’ and ‘Mawdryn Undead’ as well as Peter’s non-‘Doctor Who’ book ‘Robot’.

I liked how, during his interview, Peter makes comments on the challenges of directing the TV stories he did. He expresses how challenging it was to direct his first story ‘Full Circle’ in terms of a script.

It was interesting how Peter compares both ‘Full Circle’ and ‘Logopolis’. He says that ‘Logopolis’ was easier to direct in terms of a script compared to ‘Full Circle’ which is an interesting remark to make.

Peter makes comments on how strange ‘Kinda’ was to make, especially concerning the subject matter. I liked how he refers to ‘The Unfolding Text’, a book that examined ‘Kinda’ published in the 1980s.

I enjoyed Peter’s comments on making ‘Earthshock’. Some of these comments are very familiar when he’s pushing the actors in their performances. But he clearly enjoyed working on that story.

Not much was mentioned on the TV stories he wrote for ‘Doctor Who’, especially with ‘Mawdryn Undead’ and ‘Planet of Fire’. It would have been nice to hear his comments about those TV stories.

It’s a shame that Peter Grimwade is no longer with us, as he was clearly an interesting person from this interview. It would have been nice to meet him at conventions and share how much I like his stories.

This ‘Myth Makers’ interview has been very enjoyable indeed. The Sarah Sutton parts to the interview were the highlight for me, but I liked the insight of the man who directed four amazing ‘Doctor Who’ stories.

‘Myth Makers: Peter Grimwade’ rating – 8/10

This ‘Myth Makers’ DVD is a joy and a treasure for me. I’ve seen more ‘Myth Makers’ interviews with Katy Manning and Wendy Padbury, but Sarah Sutton’s interview will always be my favourite. If you’re a Sarah Sutton/Nyssa fan like me, I highly recommend purchasing this DVD and seeing it for yourself.

As well as seeing this DVD, I highly recommend seeing Sarah Sutton at a convention in the UK or the USA. I’ve seen Sarah at conventions and she’s always very kind-hearted and friendly to meet and chat to.

‘Myth Makers: Sarah Sutton and Peter Grimwade’ DVD rating – 9/10

Return to The Works of Sarah Sutton
Return to The Nyssa Challenge
Return to Doctor Who Reviews
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