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The Happiness Patrol
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Synopsis


The Doctor Confronts the Kandyman
The Doctor Confronts the Kandyman
 The Doctor has heard stories of strange and sinister goings-on on Earth colony Terra Alpha. Citizens have disappeared without trace, and strange creatures lurk in the pipes and sewers under the capital city. Believing it is high time someone got to the bottom of the mystery, The Doctor declares to his young companion Ace that tonight will be the night...

 He discovers that Terra Alpha is ruled by the tyrannical Helen A, a dictator who requires her subjects to be happy... or die. Her roving death squads - the Happiness Patrol - are empowered to kill on sight anyone displaying signs of sadness, gloom or melancholy.

 However, it is not just the sadistic Happiness Patrol that The Doctor and Ace must contend with. Before they can discover the dark secret of Helen A's regime, they must face the fearsome bloodlust of her savage pet, Fifi, and the lethal surprises cooked up by her chief executioner - and confectioner supreme - the Kandy Man.

Source: BBC VHS Video


General Information

Season: Twenty Five
Production Code: 7L
Story Number: 149
Episode Numbers:672 - 674
Number of Episodes: 3
Percentage of Episodes Held:100%
Working Titles:"The Crooked Smile"
Production Dates: July - August 1988
Broadcast Started: 02 November 1988
Broadcast Finished: 16 November 1988
Colour Status: Colour
Studio: BBC Television Centre (TC3 and TC8)
Location: None
Writer:Graeme Curry
Director:Chris Clough
Producer:John Nathan-Turner
Script Editor:Andrew Cartmel
Production Assistant:Jane Wellesley
Production Associate:June Collins
Assistant Floor Manager:Lynn Grant
Designer:John Asbridge
Costume Designer:Richard Croft
Make-Up Designer:Dorka Nieradzik
Incidental Music:Dominic Glynn
Special Sounds (SFX Editor):Dick Mills
Studio Sounds:Scott Talbott and Trevor Webster
Lighting:Don Babbage
Visual Effects:Perry Brahan
Title Sequence:Oliver Elmes
Title Music:Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Arranged by Keff McCulloch
Number of Doctors: 1
The Doctor: Sylvester McCoy (The Seventh Doctor)
Number of Companions: 1The Companion: Sophie Aldred (Ace) Guest Cast: Sheila Hancock (Helen A) Additional Cast: Ronald Fraser (Joseph C), Georgina Hale (Daisy K), Rachel Bell (Priscilla P), Harold Innocent (Gilbert M), John Normington (Trevor Sigma), Lesley Dunlop (Susan Q), Richard D. Sharp (Earl Sigma), Tim Barker (Harold V), Jonathan Burn (Silas P), David John Pope (Kandy Man), Mary Healey (Killjoy), Tim Scott (Forum Doorman), Steve Swinscoe (Sniper), Mark Carroll (Sniper), Philip Neve (Wences), Ryan Freedman (Wulfric), Annie Hulley (Newscaster)Setting: Terra Alpha (some centuries in the future) Villains:Fifi, Helen A, Kandy Man and The Happiness Patrol

The Episodes

No. Episodes Broadcast
(UK)
Duration Viewers
(Millions)
In Archive
672Part 102 November 198824'51"5.3PAL 1" colour videotape
673Part 209 November 198824'48"4.6PAL 1" colour videotape
674Part 316 November 198824'25"5.3PAL 1" colour videotape

Total Duration 1 Hour 14 Minutes


Audience Appreciation

Average Viewers (Millions) 5.1
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (1998)60.88%  (Position = 116 out of 159)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2009)56.66% Lower (Position = 170 out of 200)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2014)63.77% Higher (Position = 172 out of 241)


Archives


 All three episodes exist as PAL 1” colour videotapes. A 71-edit scratch print of all episodes also exists, as does 72-edits of episodes 1 and 3.



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Notes


This story came about when Script Editor Andrew Cartmel met with writer Graeme Curry in February 1987 and invited him to pitch ideas for Season Twenty Five. This resulted in the development of a story set on a planet where unhappy people were persecuted. This expand into both a commentary on modern-day superficiality and the policies of Margaret Thatcher’s reigning Conservative government - the latter being especially obvious in the character of Graeme Curry’s dictator, Helen A.

Graeme Curry initially titled his story "The Happiness Patrol". This was soon changed to "The Crooked Smile" but by the time it was commissioned, in September 1988, Producer John Nathan-Turner asked that the title revert back to "The Happiness Patrol".

In the course of scripting this story Graeme Curry, with Andrew Cartmel’s agreement, decided to tone down the anti-Thatcher elements. He also curtailed the scope of the piece, which originally spanned several weeks. To compensate for the fact that all the action now took place over a single night. This resulted in having Helen A’s regime already crumbling at the start of the story. Other changes included the removal of a prison area called Arcadia, complete with dozens of fruit machines and an elaborate go-kart game; this was replaced with the far simpler Waiting Zone.

In the Forum, The Doctor and Ace were originally forced to entertain their audience or be executed. This was removed as it was felt to be too similar to elements of "The Greatest Show in the Galaxy" - the story that followed this one.

Initially, Ace tricked Susan Q into helping escape instead of Susan Q doing so willingly.

The snipers were renamed David S and Alex S, from Stan S and Sid S, though billed in the Radio Times, these were never mentioned onscreen.

John Normington, who played the part of Trevor Sigma, previously played Morgus in the 1984 Fifth Doctor story "The Caves of Androzani". He later appeared in the Torchwood story "Ghost Machine".

Among the actresses considered for the role of Helen A were Jill Bennett and Keeping Up Appearances' Patricia Routledge. The part of Helen A eventually went to Sheila Hancock. While Prunella Ransome and Rosalind Ayres were amongst those considered for the role of Susan Q.

Although identified only as ‘Killjoy' in the closing credits to the first episode, the character played by Mary Healey is named Daphne S, as confirmed by the poster at the conclusion of the second episode.

Earl Sigma’s instrument was changed from a trumpet to a harmonica. It was played not by Earl Sigma actor Richard D Sharp but, from out of vision, by musician Adam Burney.

The howl of Fifi, Helen A’s pet Stigorax, was actually the modulated sound of director Chris Clough’s own voice.

The director assigned to this story was Chris Clough. As with the previous season, it had been planned that the final six episodes of Season Twenty Five would comprise of a three-part location-only story ("Silver Nemesis") and a three-part studio-only story ("The Happiness Patrol"). Clough had helmed their Season Twenty Four counterparts ("Delta and the Bannermen" and "Dragonfire", respectively) and so was brought back to handle the two three-part stories in this season as well.

It was Chris Clough and John Nathan-Turner who decided to completely reinvent the visual look of the Kandy Man. In Graeme Curry’s scripts, the Kandy Man was basically human in appearance - the fact that he was made out of sweets was rather subtle. Chris Clough and John Nathan-Turner decided that they wanted the Kandy Man to be much more obviously robotic, and so make-up designer Dorka Nieradzik - using Michelin Tires’ seminal Michelin Man icon as a basis - put together an outfit which looked as though it were literally made of giant candies.

During the studio recording Chris Clough found the studio-bound ‘exteriors’ cumbersome to work in, severely limiting his ability to plan interesting camera angles. To compensate, he wanted to give this story a film noir feel by using various off-kilter perspectives, as was done in the 1949 Orson Welles movie The Third Man. This idea though was vetoed by John Nathan-Turner, who felt the technique would be too disorienting.

For the Pipe People, it was thought for a time that they might be achieved using puppets; eventually, however, the decision was made to employ eight child actors in costume. Conversely, Fifi was actually several different puppets. The idea of hiring an actor to play the creature was dismissed because John Nathan-Turner wanted Fifi to be comparatively small.

In post-production, all three episodes were found to overrun severely, and a number of cuts were made. These included a scene, in the first episode, where the Kandy Man slices off his own finger only to calmly reattach it; Susan Q revealing that she was demoted from Susan L because of a smuggled blue record; The Doctor escaping at the start of the second episode only to return when he realises that Earl Sigma has been captured; and the Kandy Man’s actual death scene in part three, the execution of which had left Chris Clough dissatisfied.

Season Twenty Five was originally scheduled to start in September 1988, with "The Happiness Patrol" due to be the fourth and final story of this season. But due to the BBC's broadcast of the Seoul Olympics the start of this season was pushed back to the beginning of October. Because John Nathan-Turner still wanted to begin the season with "Remembrance of the Daleks" and have the Twenty Fifth Anniversary story, "Silver Nemesis", begin on the 23rd November (the actual date of the anniversary), this left only three weeks in between the two stories. As a result, "The Happiness Patrol" was moved up into this gap - so swapping places with the four-part "The Greatest Show in the Galaxy".

The Doctor is heard telling Ace about the events of the 1974 Third Doctor story "Invasion of the Dinosaurs" - namely his confrontation with a Triceratops as well as a Pteradactyl in the Underground. He also mentions The Brigadier. The Seventh Doctor and Ace later meet The Brigadier in the 1989 story "Battlefield".

In "Battlefield", Mordred tells The Doctor, who is threatening him with a sword, to ‘Look me in the eye. End my life!’, which is the same line The Doctor says to a sniper threatening his life in this story.

It is revealed that The Doctor can sing, performing ‘As Time Goes By’, the song famously sung by Dooley Wilson in the 1942 film Casablanca. While Ace can’t sing, dance or play an instrument.

It is revealed that Ace hates lift music but loves dinosaurs.

Ace describes the story of the Pixies song ‘Gigantic’ to Susan Q. She also wears a Pixies badge.

The Doctor mentions his nickname in his academy days on Gallifrey was ‘Theta Sigma’. The Doctor’s classmate Drax referred to him by this nickname in the 1979 Fourth Doctor story "The Armageddon Factor".

It is clear that the character of Helen A was intended to be a caricature of then British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. In 2010, Sylvester McCoy told the Sunday Times that: ‘Our feeling was that Margaret Thatcher was far more terrifying than any monster The Doctor had encountered’. In this story The Doctor’s call on the drones to, down their tools and revolt, was intended as a reference to the 1984-1985 miners’ strike. Along with other political references these were eventually toned down.

The Doctor uses lemonade to stick the Kandy Man’s feet to the ground and water to unstick him.

This story contains a number of errors. Namely: In the first episode, while The Doctor is repairing the buggy, a member of the Happiness Patrol is seen running onto the set too soon, realises, and runs back; No reason is given why the Happiness Patrol shoot Silas P (as they know who he is); In the second episode the Kandy Man’s microphone picks up quite a bit of the Seventh Doctor’s dialogue; In the scenes set in the underground tunnels in the third episode the Kandy Man has no metal brace around his mouth. This was added to the costume following initial recordings to try to disguise the features of the actor inside; The aliens’ costumes display maps of Paris; The man at the box office is so unhappy he’s lucky not to be arrested.

It has been revealed that the production team considered transmitting this story in black and white to fit with its intended film noir atmosphere. In an interview for issue 425 of the Doctor Who Magazine, Sylvester McCoy has revealed that had he known he would have begged the Production Team to film this story in black and white, as he thought the sets were lacking.

There also existed, amongst some fans at the time, a myth that the third episode was intended to consist of animation rather than live action.

This story was Graham Curry’s only contribution to Doctor Who, and also Chris Clough’s last story. Feeling that he had little more to offer the programme, Chris Clough went on to work on shows such as The Bill (for which Graham Curry also wrote) and Casualty.

After the broadcast of this story the BBC received a letter from the chairmen of Bassett Foods plc complaining that the Kandy Man infringed on the trademark of the company’s advertising icon, Bertie Bassett. After investigating the matter the BBC Copyright Department confirmed that no transgressions had occurred - but they agreed not to use the Kandy Man in any future storylines.

The novelisation of this story, written by Graeme Curry, was published by Target Books in February 1990. Graeme Curry adapted his scripts rather than the televised version and so it includes a number of scenes, cut during editing, and his original envisioning of the Kandy Man with a human appearance, albeit with powdery white skin and edible candy-cane glasses.

The Doctor encounters the Kandy Man again in the Decalog 2 - Lost Property story "The Trials of Tara", written by Paul Cornell.

The TARDIS was also painted in the 1987 story "Paradise Towers" and it gets painted again in the 2005 Ninth Doctor story "Aliens of London/World War Three".



First and Last

The Firsts:

 The first Doctor Who story to be written by Graeme Curry.


The Lasts (Subject to Future Stories):

 The last Doctor Who story to be written by Graeme Curry.

 The last Doctor Who story, that was recorded, to be directed by Chris Clough.


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The Plot

WARNING: May Contain SpoilersHide Text
The Kandyman
The Kandyman

The TARDIS arrives on the planet Terra Alpha after The Doctor hears of some disturbing rumours of something evil on the planet. As The Doctor and Ace explore they become unsettled by the planet’s unnaturally happy society. Cheerful music plays everywhere and the planet’s secret police force, the Happiness Patrol, roam the streets wearing bright pink and purple uniforms, while they hunt down and kill so-called ‘Killjoys’. The Doctor and Ace soon encounter Trevor Sigma, an official galactic censor, who is visiting Terra Alpha to discover why so many of the population have disappeared.

When some members of the Happiness Patrol arrive and start painting the TARDIS pink The Doctor and Ace then get themselves arrested. This happens when The Doctor points out that he and Ace are without official off-worlder badges. The Happiness Patrol’s leader, Daisy K, has them arrested and they are taken to a holding zone controlled by Priscilla P. There they meet Harold V, who used to be Harold F, and whose brother has been sentenced to death for a display of public grief. Harold V tells The Doctor and Ace that the planet is ruled over by the vicious and egotistical Helen A, who is obsessed with eliminating unhappiness. He also tells them that the penalty for those found guilty of unhappiness is death in a stream of molten candy prepared by Helen A's executioner, the robotic Kandy Man.

After Harold V is killed, by an electric shock from a fruit machine, The Doctor and Ace manage to escape from the holding zone in a motorised go-cart. The Doctor though first has to disarm a bomb that has been planted on it. Ace though is re-arrested but she manages to escape when she is assisted by Susan Q, a disaffected Happiness Patrol member. The Doctor meanwhile narrowly avoids being re-arrested by Happiness Patrol spy Silas P, who is knocked unconscious by a man named Earl Sigma - a holidaying medical student, who has got stuck on Terra Alpha, and who has been stirring unrest by playing the Blues on his harmonica. When Silas P comes to, he is killed by the arrival of a Happiness Patrol who discover that he is unhappy.

Helen A
Helen A

Earl Sigma and The Doctor head for the Kandy Kitchen where they are captured by the Kandy Man, who plans to use them in its experiments. They escape when The Doctor verbally confuses the Kandy Man and gets it to spill some lemonade causing the Kandy Man to become stuck firmly to the floor. The Doctor and Earl Sigma then escape into a network of pipes and tunnels under the kitchen where they meet up with a group of Pipe People, the original inhabitants of Terra Alpha. On learning from the Kandy Man what has happened Helen sends Fifi, her carnivorous pet Stigorax - a vicious dog-like creature -, into the pipes to flush them out.

Ace is re-arrested once more and taken to a holding zone with Susan Q. She is rescued by one of the Pipe People, but Susan Q is taken off for a ‘routine disappearance’. Ace finds herself being chased by Fifi down the tunnels but she uses a can of her nitro-9 to blow up the pipe behind her but then falls down another pipe. She emerges to join Susan Q on the execution platform - and so in danger of being killed by a deadly flow of boiling candy.

Helen A and Fifi
Helen A and Fifi

The Doctor also manages to escape from the pipes and he again meets Trevor Sigma, who he persuades to take him to see Helen A. They arrive at her office and she tells Trevor Sigma that she has managed the population down by seventeen percent. The Doctor then takes a fire extinguisher from the inner office and a lemonade siphon from the outer office. The Doctor then returns to the Kandy Kitchen where the Kandy Man is still stuck firm to the lemonade covered floor. The Doctor unsticks him with a blast from the fire extinguisher in return for the Kandy Man’s agreement to divert a flow of boiling candy destined for the execution platform. With Ace and Susan Q thus saved, The Doctor uses the lemonade to re-attach the Kandy Man to the floor.

When the execution fails Helen A is furious and so enrols Ace and Susan Q to appear in the late show at the Forum, where the penalty for non-entertainment is death. The Doctor and Earl Sigma rescue them both by arranging for some factory workers, that he encountered earlier, to demonstrate in the forum square. He then persuades a couple of snipers to stand down. Helen A, undaunted, orders the Happiness Patrol to wipe out the demonstrators.

Ace and the Happiness Patrol arrive at the forum square to be greeted by The Doctor, who seems ecstatically happy to see them – which means that the Happiness Patrol cannot touch him. The demonstrators also appear happy, as do Ace and Susan Q. This leaves only the Happiness Patrol themselves who are unhappy. Priscilla P therefore arrests them making Helen A even more furious.

Painting the TARDIS Pink
Painting the TARDIS Pink

Fifi, having survived Ace’s earlier nitro-9 blast in the tunnel, and after being tended by Helen A, is sent back down into the pipes to wipe out the ‘vermin’. There The Doctor, Ace, Susan Q, Earl and the Pipe People find themselves being pursued through the pipes by Fifi. They arrive at a section of pipe encrusted with sugar and The Doctor gets Earl Sigma to play an ‘A flat’ on his harmonica in the hope that this will create a resonance and cause the sugar to collapse. This fails, so Earl Sigma tries a ‘C’ instead. But this also fails. However, as Fifi approaches them and howls, the crystallised sugar comes crashing down on the creature.

The Doctor and Ace then head for the Kandy Kitchen, where they threaten the Kandy Man with a red hot poker and the heat from the oven. The Kandy Man escapes into the pipes but is engulfed and dissolved by a flow of his own fondant surprise started by the Pipe People. Only a metal skeleton and some sweet remains emerge onto the execution platform.

While a revolution takes full effect outside the palace walls Helen A realises that she has lost control of the population and so starts to pack in preparation to leave Terra Alpha. As she is dong so a radio announcer reports that one hundred and twelve factories have fallen to the rebels. Helen A’s private shuttle then takes off, but she is not on board as it has been commandeered by Gilbert M, who constructed the Kandy Man and acted as its assistant, and Joseph C, Helen A’s husband. After they bid her farewell, via a video screen, Helen A makes her way through the city and meets The Doctor who tries to teach her about the true nature of happiness, which can only be understood if counter-balanced by sadness. Helen A at first sneers at The Doctor as she is still convinced that she was right and that unhappiness and love were unnecessary. But as she plans to leave, on a scheduled flight, Helen A finally realises that happiness is nothing without the contrast of sadness when she discovers Fifi, now injured and dying. This causes her to finally feel some sadness of her own when she breaks down in tears at the loss of her pet.

With Helen A’s rule over, and the revolution complete, Priscilla P and Daisy K are put to work repainting the city as The Doctor and Ace bid farewell to Susan Q and Earl Sigma. On discovering that the TARDIS has been mostly repainted, back to its original blue, Ace picks up a paint pot to finish off the job.

 
The Doctor Entertains
The Doctor Entertains
The Doctor and Ace
The Doctor and Ace
The Kandyman and Gilbert M
The Kandyman and Gilbert M
Ace and Susan Q
Ace and Susan Q
 
Susan Q
Susan Q
The Doctor in Front of the Poster of Ace
The Doctor in Front of the Poster of Ace
The Doctor on Helen A's Chair
The Doctor on Helen A's Chair
Helen A
Helen A




Quote of the Story


 'If you live here, I need a town and a street. If you're an alien, I need a home planet, except when you spend more than half the work here when you're away, in which case I need a planet of origin.'

Trevor Sigma



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Release Information

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)Code NumberCover ArtRemarks
Audio
CD
30 Years at the Radiophonic Workshop1993BBC CD 871Photo-montageSound effects
Video
VHS
The Happiness PatrolAugust 1997BBCV 5803Colin Howard
Video
DVD
The Happiness PatrolMay 2012BBCDVD 3387Part of the "Ace Adventures" Box Set Released along with "Dragonfire"


In Print

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)PublisherAuthorCover ArtRemarks
Novel
Novel
The Happiness PatrolFebruary 1990Target No. 146Graeme CurryAlister PearsonISBN: 0-426-20339-9
CD
CD
The Happiness PatrolJuly 2009Target No. 146Graeme CurryAlister PearsonAudio version of the Target Novel read by Rula Lenska.
Doctor Who CMS Magazine (In Vision)Issue 97 (Released: August 2001)
Doctor Who Magazine - PreviewIssue 142 (Released: November 1988)
Doctor Who Magazine - After ImageIssue 145 (Released: February 1989)
Doctor Who Magazine - ArticleIssue 173 (Released: May 1991)
Doctor Who Magazine - ArchiveIssue 302 (Released: April 2001)
Doctor Who Magazine - Time TeamIssue 407 (Released: April 2009)
Doctor Who Magazine - The Fact of FictionIssue 423 (Released: July 2010)
Doctor Who DVD FilesVolume 119 (Released: July 2013)

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Sylvester McCoy
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Sophie Aldred
Ace
 
   




On Release

Sound Effects CD Cover
Sound Effects CD Cover

BBC
AUDIO
VHS Video Cover
VHS Video Cover

BBC
VIDEO
Ace Adventures Box Set DVD Cover
Ace Adventures Box Set DVD Cover

BBC
VIDEO
   


In Print

Target Book Cover
Target Book Cover

Target
NOVEL
 
Target Audio CD Cover
Target Audio CD Cover

BBC
CD
   


Magazines

Doctor Who CMS Magazine (In Vision): Issue 97
Doctor Who CMS Magazine (In Vision): Issue 97

CMS
Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 142
Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 142

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - After Image: Issue 145
Doctor Who Magazine - After Image: Issue 145

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Article: Issue 173
Doctor Who Magazine - Article: Issue 173

Marvel Comics
   
Doctor Who Magazine - Archive: Issue 302
Doctor Who Magazine - Archive: Issue 302

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 407
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 407

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - The Fact of Fiction: Issue 423
Doctor Who Magazine - The Fact of Fiction: Issue 423

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 119
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 119

GE Fabbri
   


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