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The Unintroduced Companion - Yew Erdri Ming

About The Unintroduced Companion

Previous Entry The Unintroduced Companion Feb. 6th, 2016 @ 05:23 pm Next Entry
Damn. I just lost twenty minutes watching Bonnie Langford videos. How did that happen? Well, maybe I was just stunned to find out the second most annoying Doctor Who companion had, and still has, a successful career in musicals. She started as a child in the 70s. Can you believe that, at one time, someone thought, "People will be entertained if I put this on television:"



That's Langford on the right. On the left is Lena Zavaroni who, if you didn't didn't notice the website slowly fading in and out throughout, uploaded the video to YouTube. Well, good luck, Ms. Zavaroni.

EDIT poliphilo informs me that Lena Zavaroni passed away in 1999. So someone else has taken her name on YouTube and is promoting her website.

Everything I find annoying about Lanford on Doctor Who--the loud, piercing voice, the emotionally tone deaf delivery--are actually pretty typical for a stage musical performer and with the bar thus lowered I actually kind of dig her. She's a good dancer, anyway, and has nice legs.



This past week I heard Langford as Doctor Who companion Mel Bush with the Seventh Doctor (Sylvester McCoy) in the 2006 audio play "Red". The two visit a society that has voluntarily purged all violent thoughts--and if there's an error and one of them commits violence, the memory is edited out by an android named White Noise (John Stahl). The Doctor himself remarks this isn't a remarkable idea but I liked the way writer Stewart Sheargold develops it in terms of social classes. It turns out that at one point in history a group of people decided they wanted the violent thoughts back so they had the brain chips responsible for the behaviour inhibition deactivated. But that meant they had to live outside the "Needle", the decadent place where the non-violent people live. So this sedation becomes a privilege of the rich while the poor, finding their violent thoughts are too foreign and difficult to control, are compelled to use something called "Slow" which is actually a sort of time travel where they actually commit violent deeds in a two minute alternate timeline to get it out of their system.

In the Needle is a woman named Leterel (Ann Jenkins, probably not Baroness Anne Jenkin though Wikipedia links the name from the cast list to the conservative member of the House of Lords) who's developed a fetish for violent thoughts largely because she can't experience them. There's a heavily implied S&M quality to it and Sheargold may have been commenting on spectators of violence. It sort of reminded me of Farley Granger and John Dall in Alfred Hitchcock's Rope, two students seduced into committing violence by their professor's (James Stewart) droll lectures on violent human nature.

"Red" was a decent audio play. It was interesting hearing the famously pacifist Doctor explain why it's wrong to suppress violent thoughts.

Here are some photos I've taken recently:







Twitter Sonnet #838

The arms of flotillas tamp down the tea.
Agate enriched guerilla news misleads.
The artificial jelly goes to me.
The grass upon the court like hair recedes.
The holy land divides in grids of egg.
A batter mixed enmeshed the pitcher's fork.
No place in sports regrets the breakfast leg.
If thigh or calf is filled with wooden pork.
A razor sharp regression glossed the cell.
A second lightning strike redecorates.
Impossible, the door broadcasts a bell.
The train intrudes as Heaven decollates.
A silhouette presumes to chip the barque.
Deceased the bosun will sing after dark.
Current Location: The Needle
Current Mood: sleepysleepy
Current Music: "The Wake-Up" - How to Destroy Angels
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From:poliphilo
Date:February 7th, 2016 11:41 am (UTC)
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Lena Zavaroni died in 1999. I guess she still has admirers.

Bonnie Langford had a cameo in Bugsy Malone- playing a screechy annoying character- and eclipsed all the other kids- apart, that is, from Jodie Foster. She was also outstanding as the annoying, screechy Violet Elizabeth Bott in a TV dramatisation of Richmal Crompton's Just William stories.

Unsurprisingly she got stuck with playing annoying, screechy little girls. It's the Shirley Temple story all over again. By the time she was cast in Dr Who her career was on the wane, but it was still something of a coup for the show- seeing as how they mostly employed unknowns.
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From:setsuled
Date:February 7th, 2016 12:47 pm (UTC)
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Lena Zavaroni died in 1999. I guess she still has admirers.

Wow. It never in a million years would've occurred to me that the person on YouTube identifying as Lena Zavaroni was not actually her. Well, reading the circumstances of her death, I do feel bad for her.

Bonnie Langford had a cameo in Bugsy Malone- playing a screechy annoying character-

I haven't seen that since I was a kid. Apparently in recent years she's had a lead role in Spamelot, there's a clip of her on YouTube performing "Song that Goes Like This" ably enough.

By the time she was cast in Dr Who her career was on the wane, but it was still something of a coup for the show- seeing as how they mostly employed unknowns.

She fits so perfectly in with the Colin Baker era. Almost everyone on the show at that point reminds me of the interchangeable, shrill kids shows I saw in the 80s. Everyone reminds me of spoiled children putting on a crude play for the adults at a Christmas party. I did think she was kind of funny in the audio play Bang-Bang-a-Boom! but she kind of plays a parody of Mel in that one.
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