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Doctor Who Spin-Off Downtime Coming To DVD In November

Remember that sequel to the Second Doctor stories The Abominable Snowmen and The Web of Fear featuring Elizabeth Sladen as Sarah Jane Smith and Nicholas Courtney as Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart? Well fear not, you are finally going to get the chance to see it.

Downtime was the unofficial Doctor Who spin-off made in 1995 that saw the retired UNIT commander called into action alongside Sarah Jane Smith to battle the Great Intelligence. It featured former Second Doctor companion Victoria Waterfield (Deborah Watling) and Professor Travers (Jack Watling) as villains seeking to control the Earth from their 'sinister' school New World University.

The 70-minute serial was actually not a BBC production but made instead by Reeltime Pictures and was forbidden to include or even reference the Doctor.

Here's the official synopsis for the DVD of Downtime...

We follow The Brigadier and Sarah Jane Smith of UNIT who investigate New World University; a sinister school run by old enemies Victoria Waterfield and Professor Travers. The technology obsessed University holds a gateway to Earth made by classic foe the ‘Great Intelligence.’

Fighting alone this time – without their famous time-travelling scientific advisor – The Brigadier and Sarah Jane are hard pressed to decide who is friend or foe as they search for a missing Locus, which binds the Intelligence’s power. The battle is broadened when the Brigadier’s own family is threatened and UNIT faces a powerful new breed of Yeti!

Downtime is released on DVD on Monday 16 November and will contain extras, including ‘Behind the Lens’, looking at the production with never before seen footage, and ‘Post Production’, a glimpse into the editing, sound and visual effects work.

Are you curious to check out this out and did you see it on the original broadcast? And does this mean unofficial UNIT adventures Auton (1997) - and its sequel Auton 2: Sentinel are on their way next?

Doctor Who

The long-running BBC TV science fiction series that started in 1963 and recently celebrated its 50th Anniversary. 2017 saw Peter Capaldi regenerate into the show's first female Doctor played by Jodie Whittaker. The Thirteenth Doctor's first season debuts in 2018, with Chris Chibnall replacing Steven Moffat as the current showrunner.

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