The Mind of Evil - DVD

Residing in the BBC Archives as a set of black and white 16mm film recordings, this six-part Jon Pertwee story has been brought back to full colour through a combination of technology and sheer hard work...

16mm film recording negatives of all six episodes exist in the BBC Archive and are in very good condition generally. Episodes two through six have unfiltered PAL chroma of varying quality, allowing the Colour Recovery process to be used to extract the colour information from these films - see the Dalek War article for more background detail on this innovative process and The Claws of Axos SE for information on later refinements to the process. Richard Russell undertook all of the Colour Recovery processing work, with Peter Crocker looking after the extensive cleanup work required afterwards. Unfortunately, episode one was originally film recorded via a subcarrier filter, so Colour Recovery cannot be used and artificial colourisation was the only way forward.

Initially, we approached Legend Films, who had worked with us on 'Planet of the Daleks' (again see the Dalek War article for full details), but they had priced themselves out of the market. It's possible they simply didn't want to do the work and deliberately increased their prices by a whopping eight times, which was ten times dearer once the change in exchange rate had been factored in. Clearly, they were out of the running.

Peter Crocker approached Stuart Humphryes, who had been producing high quality colourisations of Doctor Who clips for a while, under the name of Babelcolour. Stuart agreed to work with Peter, producing hand-coloured key frames which Peter would then 'in-between' using a combination of manual and computer assisted techniques. Over the course of several months, Stuart and Peter worked long days to bring episode one back to colour in remarkable quality. Jonathan Wood tied everything together with a fantastic grade of some really disparate sources and Mark Ayres laboured long and hard to bring life back to a horribly compressed optical film soundtrack.

Disc 1

• 6 x 25 mins approx colour episodes with mono audio.

Commentary with actors Katy Manning, Pik-Sen Lim and Fernanda Marlowe, director Timothy Combe, producer Barry Letts, script editor Terrance Dicks and stunt arranger Derek Ware. Moderated by Toby Hadoke.

Disc 2

The Military Mind (dur. 22’ 43”) – shot back in 2009 on location at Dover Castle, this look at the making of the story is made unexpectedly poignant by the appearance of Nicholas Courtney and Barry Letts, who both passed away in the intervening years. Featuring actors Nicholas Courtney, Pik-Sen Lim and Fernanda Marlow, director Timothy Combe, producer Barry Letts and script editor Terrance Dicks. Narrated by Cameron McEwan.

Now & Then (dur. 7’ 06”) – the latest in our long-running series visits the filming locations used in the story to see how they have changed over the years.

Behind the Scenes: Television Centre (dur. 24’ 00”) – back in 1971, at around the time ‘The Mind of Evil’ was in production, presenter Norman Tozer visited Television Centre to find out what went on over 24 hours in the life of what was then an incredibly busy ‘television factory’.

• Plus of course the usual PDF materials (including the 1971 Kellogs Sugar Smacks promotion), Coming Soon trailer, Programme Subtitles, Subtitle Production Notes and Photo Gallery.


Copyright Steve Roberts, 4 July 2013. No reproduction allowed without written permission.