Doctor Who fans were deeply saddened by the news earlier this week of the passing of the legendary writer and novelist Terrance Dicks. The 84-year-old Dicks started his career as a freelance script and radio editor back in the ’60s. He was subsequently hired onto the BBC series, Doctor Who, as an assistant script editor in 1968.
Today, Doctor Who is well known with both science-fiction fans and beyond. However, when Dicks joined the show in 1968, he was warned by many that he was anchoring himself to a sinking ship. In an interview in a 1990 issue of Doctor Who Magazine, Dicks recollected on how many reacted when he first joined the show—many told him they were going to end it with that season.
He remembered how the BBC searched long and hard for a replacement, but after not being able to find anything they wanted to take a chance on, they decided to sign on for another season of Doctor Who.
After the show was finally and officially canceled in 1989, Dicks has been known as one of the few defining individuals that are credited with keeping the fandom for the show alive and well, here decades later. As a result, the man known to fans worldwide affectionately das “Uncle Terrance” will be mourned and missed.
When Dicks first joined Doctor Who, it was pretty well known that the show was constantly in a state of flux, and along with producer Barry Letts, Dicks helped to get the show back on its original track. The reason Dicks worked so hard was that the show became somewhat of a labor of love for him.
Although Dicks was active with the series, he will perhaps be remembered for his off-screen work, particularly his authoring of novelizations telling of the continued adventures of the good Doctor.