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  1. #1
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    Default BBC NOT to Make a Full Series 5 of SJA

    It's a little confused (as ever!) but this report might suggest the BBC will pad out Series 5 and make a full final season, even though Lis only made 3 adventures.

    The BBC has reportedly decided to continue broadcasting The Sarah Jane Adventures, following the death of Elisabeth Sladen.

    The much-loved actress passed away last month following a battle against cancer. According to The Sun, her Doctor Who spin-off will continue on CBBC with writers finding a way to explain her absence.

    It had been suggested that bosses were unsure about broadcasting the fifth series of the show, of which Sladen had not completed filming before her death.

    However, the paper claims that it was decided to continue the series, with the remaining scripts being rewritten.

    "Writers will find a way to complete the series without Sarah," a source said. "Fans will be thrilled to know it is returning."

    Paying tribute to Sladen, Sarah Jane Adventures creator and former Doctor Who showrunner Russell T Davies previously said: "I absolutely loved Lis. She was funny and cheeky and clever and just simply wonderful. The universe was lucky to have Sarah Jane Smith; the world was lucky to have Lis."

  2. #2

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    Five words: Trail of the Pink Panther.

    Broadcast the episodes that Lis made and then respectfully leave it at that. The Sarah Jane Adventures without Sarah is like toast without bread.

  3. #3
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    Is there a chance she recorded bits of some remaining stories?

    Also technically they've done "Sarah light" episodes before, and let's not forget that she's not the ONLY loved character in this show that now has to end. Maybe it wouldn't be such a bad thing if we got an episode saying goodbye to Clyde, Rani and Luke?

    Si.

  4. #4
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    I can see why they'd want to make a full season, but it's a little disrepectful to carry on without her. Even bringing back Jo or another old companion to help or the Doctor even wouldn't really seem right.

  5. #5
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    Dr Who on-line appear to have confirmed that Series 5 will be a full season.

    Si.

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    It always feels uncomfortable when a series plays out when the leading actor is dead - I remember Father Ted season 3 - which was the funniest.

    I guess they'll try and pad out the middle episodes and have her stories top and tail. But finishing the series might be a fitting tribute. I remember how they managed to turn the 8 Simple Rules story into a fitting coverage of dealing with death.
    Remember, just because Davros is dead doesn't mean the Dalek menace has been contained ......

  7. #7
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    Has she done 3 episodes or 3 stories (6 episodes)? They could space them out and make sure they end with one she's in? Maybe put ones based around Clyde/Luke/Rani in between? I'd be clever and have them talking to her on the phone and things, using old footage.

    Si.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Si Hunt View Post
    I'd be clever and have them talking to her on the phone and things, using old footage.

    Si.
    I like the idea, Si, but what you suggest almost always looks - to me, anyway - cheap and tacky. It's one of those things that takes a viewer out of the moment by making them think: 'Ooh, they're doing that to make it seem like she's there but she's not because she's... oh.' Sadness dawns.

    That's why I mentioned The Trail Of The Pink Panther. It was made in precisely that way, using old footage of the late Peter Sellers, and it was a horror.

  9. #9
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    I was thinking more audio footage...

    Si.

  10. #10

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    It'd be good to finish the series off as properly as they could with the footage they have. Making two series is pushing it though!
    Although Blake's 7 was the first thing I thought of than The Trail Of The Pink Panther.
    Three stories is better than I first thought they had. It would be a fitting farewell. Hopefully, they won't make one story a "clips show". I know they've showed clips of Doctor Who in "Death Of The Doctor", but they were fleeting.
    If there's a story of Luke, Rani and Clyde sitting round the attic going "Do you remember when...?" I don't think it would do the series any good.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Si Hunt View Post
    I was thinking more audio footage...

    Si.
    If there's stuff in the can - not old stuff, but scenes (audio or visual) that were recorded for future episodes that now cannot be completed - then perhaps that'd work. But not reusing old stuff. It's just a bit... I dunno... crap...

    Then again, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus worked out alright, so who knows?

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    I hope they don't go down the route of "she's gone to America to help UNIT" write out. Somehow having her killed off and having Luke cope without her would be more of a fitting tribute.
    Remember, just because Davros is dead doesn't mean the Dalek menace has been contained ......

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    According to Gareth Roberts & Tom Spilsbury on Twitter, the story comes from today's Sun, and is not true.

  14. #14
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    Ok, so two things come to mind on this:

    1. How reliable is the paper that originally reported it? I mean, the press have hardly been the most reliable source of Doctor Who news in the past? "Bill Nighy/Paterson Joseph/Chiwetel Ejiofor is definitely the next Doctor", anyone?

    2. Would Lis Sladen have wanted them to go on without her and make as full a season as they can, even without her? My money is on the "yes".

    P.S. Si - three full stories (i.e. six episodes) are apparently in the can.

    Ant x

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  15. #15
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    See my post above Ant...

  16. #16
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    I originally reported as from the Sun, feeling that while as usual the story was a bit garbled ("BBC are carrying on..." makes it sound like it's indefinate) it might be evidence that there were seeds of truth in it.

    For what it's worth, I agree with Ant. Would Sladen have objected to them finishing off her final series? Although I'm not really qualified to say it, I don't think she would, especially if it meant a couple of episodes focussing on the kids. They may as well - it makes commercial sense, and what's a better tribute to Lis, a full final season or one which just stops halfway through? She wasn't in much of a few of the other episodes, so it's not like they'd be producing episodes which were in any way not "proper" SJA episodes.

    They might yet decide to do this - for all we know, Roberts and Spilsbury are just meaning the decision has yet to be taken. But I hope they do. As with Queen's last half-finished album, when a performer dies with a project left part-completed, it can be a tribute to them to, in that small window of time when it's "right", finish off their last project and, as Brian May put it, "bring out the last peices" of that person.

    They won't be able to ever do it again if they don't now, and it would be nice if the project Lis chose to start was finished off in memory to her.

    When Herge died, he left a book half-finished. He obviously intended that project to be completed, or he wouldn't have wasted time beginning it, but his widow chose not to. But of course eventually people die, rights change hands, and many years later we ended up with a book of the sketches. Would we really be worse off if she'd sanctioned his team of artists to complete his final project? Any last work doesn't diminish the body of art that you have already. It doesn't erase what we already have from existence.

    Si.

  17. #17
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    They may even have had Sladen's blessing on this - she obviously knew she was unwell.

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    Perhaps it's simply too early to know what's best to do. Sometimes a bit of time for reflection helps.

    Personally I think, for what its worth, they should finish the three they have and leave it at that. That'd be a lovely tribute and leave the character alive and well fighting monsters from her attic in Ealing. There's no need to do more than that.

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    Oh and then make Rani and Clyde the Doctor's next set of companions!

  20. #20
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    What's really happening:

    The Sarah Jane Adventures

    04th May 2011

    The BBC confirmed today that following the death of Elisabeth Sladen there are no plans to film further episodes of The Sarah Jane Adventures.

    Elisabeth Sladen first played the role of Sarah Jane in Doctor Who in 1973 and following her return to the show in 2006, played the eponymous lead in the award-winning CBBC series, The Sarah Jane Adventures, from 2007 onwards.

    The full statement regarding the future of the series is below:

    "Contrary to press reports today we can confirm that no new episodes of The Sarah Jane Adventures will be filmed following the tragic death of actress Elisabeth Sladen in April, 2011. As a tribute to Elisabeth the six episodes that were recorded with her last year will be broadcast on CBBC at a date to be confirmed."

  21. #21
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    Actually, I think they've made entirely the right decision there.

    I don't think they could do a series with Clyde, Rani and / or Luke carrying it. Much as I'd like to see more from these characters and actors, I can't imagine them turning up in the new series as companions - it wouldn't seem right.

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob McCow View Post
    Actually, I think they've made entirely the right decision there.
    Agreed.

  23. #23
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    I don't think they could do a series with Clyde, Rani and / or Luke carrying it.
    But no-one suggested that, did they? I'm going to buck the trend and say I think it's a shame they didn't do three more to finish the series off!

    Si.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob McCow View Post
    Actually, I think they've made entirely the right decision there.

    I don't think they could do a series with Clyde, Rani and / or Luke carrying it. Much as I'd like to see more from these characters and actors, I can't imagine them turning up in the new series as companions - it wouldn't seem right.
    I agree with your first statement; at first I thought it would be possible to continue the series without SJ but on reflection it would likely back-fire.

    However, I think Luke, Rani or Clyde would make excellent companions for the Doctor. But not for at least a couple of years and the back-story explaining SJ's absence would have to be plausible.

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    I think it would have been good to have completed one final story with Luke, Rani and Clyde to finish things off, and tie things up properly, but wouldn't have wanted them to carry on any further.

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