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on 30 January 2013
Patrick Troughton was always a bit of an enigma. He did give interviews especially toward the end of his life, but would usually tell anecdotes speaking about the making of Dr Who and not about himself. Well now, we can all learn a great deal more.

Michael Troughton is able to fill us in on Patrick Troughton's childhood and the road that lead him to acting. There are insights based on memories of conversations with his mother, (Patrick T's 1st wife), other family membersand the man himself plus contributions from his brother ( from the "2nd family") and notes from his own diaries plus letters from and to his father and the man's diary entries.

This gives us many interesting glimpses into the real man e.g MIchael's mother believed he was compelled to act, never did it because simply he needed to and was never happy doing anything else

Similar to Jessica Carney's biography of her grandfather William Hartnell the highly recommended "Who's There?" (#1), Michael has portrayed his father warts and all. he details the complex relationships that resulted from Patrick T having a 2nd family who he lived with, while still married to Michael's mother. There are explanations given as to why Michael believes this happened (a theatrical season in America may have led him to consider he married too young) and the balance of the still many postive attributes of the man. It's a bittersweet portrayal because while he emerges as a man who did treat women in his life very badly, he could still clearly be a very likeable person.

The main meat of the book is of course his acting career and the main course there is Dr Who. But you won't want to miss out on information about a courageous war record as well.

Michael's research into the career of his father is 1st rate. There is a lot of inforation about things long lost from the archives or never recorded in the 1st place. Examples include;
A 1st brush with sci-fi in a live BBC adaptation of the famous play RUR in 1948(#2). We get reviews from the paper and memories of his 1st wife watching on an early television set.
His performance as Quilp in The Old Curiosity Shop (reported by some as his favourite role) where we learn he did a Lon Chaney and put himself through discomfort to get the look right.

The inside view on his time as Dr Who fears of typecasting, dissatisfaction when stories were poor, delight when they went well and his affection for his co-stars are rivetting. He was reluctant to do a 3rd year and later regretted it.

He had concerns about returning for the Three Doctors but was encouraged to "ask about the fee first" and had endless amusement at Jon Pertwee losing his temper at poor props for The Five Doctors. His attitude to the Doctor following that 1st return was to keep his portrayal somewhere safe in case it was needed again.

We round off with how he was won round to the convention circuit and found he quite enjoyed it.

If you enjoyed "Who's There"and/or are a big fan of Patrick Troughton's work then this is definitely for you.

#1 How about a 50th Anniversary of Who new edition Miss Carney?

#2 Michael Troughton says this may be the 1st SF television programme, sadly not. 10 years earlier (1938) the BBC did an earlier adaptation of RUR but it's an understandable mistake particularly as it had the same director as the '48 one-Jan Bussell.
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on 13 April 2013
Very interesting to know a little more about Patrick Troughton although I felt there was more to tell. Maybe the author had no more information and I can hardly complain about that - but what did his second family think about the other? No insight is given into his daily life with his other two wives and for an autobiography this feels hollow. I realise his son is the writer, but I wish he would step back a little more and give a fuller picture. If the private life is not to be developed, there is still the work. Anecdotes from The Omen, Six Wives of Henry VIII as well as the many other shows would be interesting but are not given the depth of the Doctor Who coverage, just glossed over.
It is worth reading but not as insightful as the autobiography of William Hartnell, also written buy a relative.
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on 6 May 2013
I purchased this because I am a fan of the classic Doctor Who stories, and of course, I was most interested in the portions of the book discussing the Who years. In this regard, I was not disappointed. The discussion of those years provided numerous little tidbits that were new to me. I was entertained and educated reading about the interactions between Troughton and his fellow actors, plus the discussion of the transition between Hartnell and Troughton.

I also found very interesting much of the discussion of Troughton's early life. The only downside to the book was the obvious need for a good editorial pass through the book to clean up the grammar. I'd give it a 5 star review if it wasn't for all of the instances of 'there' instead of 'their' and similar editorial slip ups. However, I read the book cover to cover and enjoyed it thoroughly, so I'd have to say it was a very worthwhile purchase.
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on 31 December 2012
Quite a well-written book, from an unusual perspective. I give this five stars in particular because of the surprising personal incription on the inside cover 'to John' from Michael Troughton. My son, a longtime Dr Who fan, was delighted by this. Such thoughtfulness is commensurate with the impression I have of his father's character.
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on 4 September 2013
This is not a perfect book, there are typo's and the narrative and chronology gets muddled at times. That said, it is THE perfect Patrick Troughton biography. There is love in these pages for a Father, and a character, and an actor. Mine came signed by the author and with a lovely postcard of the books cover. It sent me back to DVD's of Troughton's performances, and I found great truths of the man revealed in his acting, as The near perfect Doctor and in the beguiling Box of Delights. A man with flaws, which we all have, but also with perfections, which few of us do. That makes the difference. Thank you Patrick Troughton for so much. Thank You Michael Troughton for showing us more.
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on 29 October 2012
I found this book really interesting. I don't have a problem, like some reviewers here, with it being very much about the relationship between father and son - what would you expect, given who wrote it? I didn't know very much about patrick troughton as a man, so found this informative. Was surprised to learn he was such a womaniser and was pretty selfish. Loved the bit about him being spotted peeing on the golf course. Horrendous typos though - very amateurish. But Michael had signed my copy, which I thought was a nice touch.
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on 8 January 2014
I purchased this book for my Husband and it arrived very quickly and was very good value. My Husband was very pleased with the gift and has not put it down. Very happy customer
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on 12 January 2015
I have to say this is one of my favourite recent reads. An easy read and one that show true warmth but also coupled with reality and honesty. One of those books where I felt privileged to be able to read it. Great work and fitting tribute.
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on 22 September 2014
arrived quickly & was well priced
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on 23 August 2014
Great book signed by the author. Loving old who especialy web of fear. Worth a look for all fans.
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