Space Helmet for a Cow: The Mad, True Story of Doctor Who 1963-1989

There have been a number of books published in the last year aimed at retelling the history of the production behind Doctor Who. Given that the show’s 50th anniversary just passed, it’s no surprise that newer fans would clamour for as full an account as possible of the history of the show.  We all have heard some of the stories, how it was filled with all kinds of drama and politics, in-fighting and major creative disagreements, and how in the end of the show’s original run, some of those in charge at the BBC Television Centre absolutely loathed the show and did everything they could to see that it ceased production – forever.

A new book, Space Helmet for a Cow, is set to be released 9th December, 2014, takes a different look at all of the drama and at what lengths some of those on the production took to keep the show going.

From Mad Norwegian Press –

In Space Helmet for a Cow, award-winning writer Paul Kirkley (SFX Magazine) provides a sweeping, wry and warm look at the behind-the-scenes story of Doctor Who – not just the greatest TV show ever made, but frequently the most insane TV show ever made. Which other program, for example, would attempt to sink Atlantis, wage inter-planetary war and crash Concorde – all in BBC Television Centre, on a budget that would barely cover a sitcom?

This is the story of how, over 50 years, a bunch of very clever, very dedicated and sometimes plain crazy people made Doctor Who happen, often against seemingly insuperable odds; a story of triumph and tragedy, tears and tantrums, and an awful lot of men called Donald.

Space Helmet for a Cow also answers the burning questions few have dared tackle before. Questions like: How does a talking cabbage get an Equity card? What would have been in William Hartnell’s Glastonbury set? And if you meet a Yeti coming out of a loo in Tooting Bec, how long should you give it?



Finally, a retelling of Who history that shows it for what it really was – an insane idea that somehow managed to stay afloat and captivate audience across the UK for many years. Now with so many years behind us, it’s easy to see the humor in all of the things that went on behind the scenes of a television show. This book looks to shed some of that humor on all of the drama and remind us that, for as revered as it is, it’s still a children’s television show.

Space Helmet For A Cow will be released 9th December, 2014 by Mad Norwegian Press, the publishers of the popular Geek Girls Chronicles (Chicks Dig…) series. It is currently available for presale on Amazon US for $10.75US. The book will be available for retail at $14.95US across all digital formats the day it is released.

A second volume of Space Helmet For A Cow is already in the works and will cover the history of the show from 1990 through Matt Smith’s tenure as the Doctor.

(Mad Norwegian Press)


Rebecca is still new to the Who world, but is no stranger to sci-fi, being a life long Trekkie. When not watching, reading, blogging, or talking about Doctor Who, she watches so many movies and reads so many books she has to keep a list of both so she doesn't forget any of them. She wishes she could have been with the Doctor and Amy when they met Van Gogh.

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