Deleted Scenes, released on St. Valentine’s Day, brings a touch of romance to the world of sixties Doctor Who. Not for the Doctor himself, but for Jamie, as the TARDIS materialises in Paris, 1908 and the pair become involved in the film business.
Travelling after Victoria’s departure, the Doctor and Jamie accept the hospitality of bohemian director Céline Tessier. As the pair settle into Parisian life, Jamie becomes enamoured with their host and her work. Eventually, he becomes Céline’s muse. When disaster strikes on her film, “Serpents dans le Jardin”, Jamie’s keen to help, and when the Doctor agrees to his request it leads them into trouble.
Writer Angus Dunican has created an enchanting story which sees the TARDIS passed off as an impossible stage illusion. Using a clever framing device, involving Celine’s Great-great-granddaughter, we dip back and forth from the present day to unlock the mystery.
It is an unusual setting for a Doctor Who story, full of period detail and with some great character development for Jamie. Céline is a wonderfully vivid and perceptive character, and it is easy to believe his feelings for her. The tale also considers the impact of moving pictures, referencing the infamous Lumière Brothers film which allegedly caused a stampede.
Fraser Hines performs, providing his now familiar take on Troughton’s Doctor as well as voicing Jamie. He also offers a few French accents, amongst others. Directed sensitively by Lisa Bowerman, this is a charmingly entry in the Short Trips range and well worth a listen.
Amusingly, as the writer’s twitter shows, Deleted Scenes has also inspired a one-off period Lego set too!