|Edition: ||UK (paperback)|
|Released: ||September 2004|
|Publisher: ||Manchester University Press|
This is the first academic study of the science fiction television devised and written by Terry Nation, who wrote Dalek stories and other serials for Doctor Who, and created the BBC's 1970s post-apocalyptic drama Survivors and the space adventure series Blake's 7. This adroitly-illustrated book by academic specialists in television science fiction places Nation's work in the context of its production and contains sustained analysis of key programmes. It will be of interest to students of television and enthusiasts of these landmark drama series, and also makes an important contribution to the study of British television history.
Television science fiction in Britain has received little critical attention, and this book draws on the key approaches developed in academic Television Studies to make an original contribution to the field. Issues discussed include the production process and how programmes are commissioned, genre and form, the politics of television programmes, and the relationships between the writer, television institutions and audiences.
The authors make use of research in the BBC's archives, and specially conducted interviews with television producers and other production staff, to discuss how the programmes that Terry Nation created and wrote were commissioned, produced and brought to the screen. The boundaries around the authorship and authority of the television writer are explored in detail using Terry Nation's science fiction work as a 'case study'. The book contains fifteen illustrations from Doctor Who, Survivors and Blake's 7, many of which have never been published before.
Jonathan Bignell is Reader in Television and Film at the University of Reading, and Director of the Centre for Television Drama Studies
Andrew O'Day has recently completed a Ph.D. thesis on television science fiction, titled 'Borderline Discourses', at Royal Holloway, University of London