A Fix with Sontarans
|A Fix with Sontarans|
|Doctor Who Special episode|
The Sixth Doctor meets his match in an 8 year old fan
|Series||Jim'll Fix It|
|Length||9 mins total|
|Originally broadcast||23 February 1985|
"A Fix with Sontarans" is the name of a specially written segment produced for the BBC children's programme Jim'll Fix It featuring Colin Baker in character as the Sixth Doctor. It was broadcast on 23 February 1985. It is not generally considered to be canonical by Doctor Who fans.
The Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker) is working the controls in the TARDIS, and he accidentally teleports his former companion Tegan Jovanka (Janet Fielding) on board. She is less than happy about this, and reluctantly agrees to help the Time Lord. He reveals that two Sontarans are on board, and they possess a powerful vitrox bomb with which they intend to blow up the time machine.
The Doctor then accidentally beams on board an Earthling called Gareth Jenkins, who happens to be dressed in an outfit similar to his own. Gareth agrees to help in any way he can, and helps The Doctor set a trap for the Sontarans. The two aliens break into the console room, destroying one of the TARDIS's doors in the process, much to the Doctor's indignation. The leader introduces himself as Group Marshall Nathan and demands that the Doctor introduces his group. Upon hearing Gareth's name, Nathan reveals that in 2001 their invasion of Earth would be foiled by a brave rebel called Gareth Jenkins; and if they kill him now their future success is assured. However, Gareth springs their trap and kills the two villains. Jimmy Savile then appears and presents Gareth with his Jim'll Fix It medal, and as an added treat, the prop "Mezon gun" the Sontarans used.
- Janet Fielding was asked to participate in the sketch when Nicola Bryant proved unavailable to reprise her role as the Doctor's then-current assistant Peri Brown.
- The young Gareth Jenkins in this broadcast is not the same Gareth Jenkins who currently works as a composer, audio engineer, and actor for Doctor Who audio play producers Big Finish, but is in fact the current Head of Campaigns for children's charity Save the Children.
||This section possibly contains original research. (December 2013)|
- Although this skit may never have been intended to be strictly canonical, attempts are made within it to fit it into continuity. Peri's absence is not explained, but when Tegan arrives (wearing a flight attendant's uniform similar to the one she wore in the series), the Doctor explains that he has regenerated; since Tegan witnessed this once before, she is not fazed. She is also shown to be somewhat familiar with the TARDIS controls, in keeping with her character in her earlier appearances, and the Doctor's relationship with her is carefully handled.
- Although it was produced prior to The Trial of a Time Lord, it is possible to place this in the Doctor's timeframe after the events of that storyline, and before his official first meeting with Melanie Bush.
- Alternatively, it could be placed around the time of the Big Finish Audio Davros, in which the Doctor is also travelling alone and which itself takes place shortly after the Sontaran story The Two Doctors.
- In the Short Trips story Fixing a Hole, Samantha Baker attempts to fix continuity by having the Doctor return Gareth and Tegan.
- In the Past Doctor Adventures novel Business Unusual, though, A Fix with Sontarans is explained away as having been a dream.
- See also, Dimensions in Time.
Group Marshal Nathan and his subordinate, unnamed on screen but referred to as "Turner" in the script, were a sly reference to Doctor Who producer John Nathan-Turner.
During the fallout of the Jimmy Savile sexual abuse scandal, Colin Baker expressed how he felt very uncomfortable with Savile during the filming of this scene. In an interview with the Daily Mail on 9 November 2012 he said “‘I met Jimmy Savile briefly in the 1980s when I was working on Dr Who. A young man had written asking if he could “fix it” for him to meet the Doctor and travel in the Tardis. After the lad had saved the day and the Sontarans had been “fixed”, Savile entered the set and did his usual self-congratulatory shtick. I didn’t warm to him. His demeanour was neither friendly, nor inclusive. He behaved much as one might expect a child to behave who had been indulged and led to believe that life revolved around them. There was certainly none of the professional respect that one would expect to be shared when two programmes combine for a special purpose. Even though we were on the Tardis set, it was very much his territory and his agenda.’
In the Built for War DVD Extra found in The Sontaran Experiment, Colin Baker said, "Jimmy Savile is much more frightening than the Sontarans."
Broadcast and releases
A Fix with Sontarans was broadcast during the run of The Two Doctors (in fact, on the same day as Part 2) and is featured as an extra on the DVD release of that story. Later pressings of the DVD have removed the segment due to the Jimmy Savile sexual abuse scandal.
- Mento, Charles. "A Fix with Sontarans". Doctor Who Reference Guide. Archived from the original on 8 April 2007. Retrieved 2007-02-28.
- "Doctor Who: The Two Doctors DVD" (Press release). BBC Worldwide. 2006-08-03. Archived from the original on 20 February 2007. Retrieved 2007-02-28.
- "The Two Doctors: Revised Release Clarification", Doctor Who News, 22 September 2014 (accessed 23 September 2014)