Michaele Jordan‘s novel, Blade Light, is a charming traditional fantasy that was serialized in Jim Baen’s Universe and is now available as an ebook at Amazon or at iBooks. Her newest novel, Mirror Maze, is available now.

A Gallifreyan Mea Culpa

I am sure you have all heard about pride, and where it goeth. And, alas, I am very proud of my Doctor Who expertise, and that pride most definitely wenteth.

I recently boasted that I had caught out the almighty BBC and castigated them for having mislaid an episode-and not merely the episode but all record of that episode. I said that, in preparation for a convention panel, I had reviewed all the Doctor Who episodes with Sarah Jane, “starting with ‘The Time Warrior’ (11th season, John Pertwee) and continuing on through ‘Hand of Fear’ (14th season, Tom Baker).”

I was particularly annoyed since the missing episode was one of Elizabeth Sladen’s most memorable. In it, Sarah Jane found a stone hand with an unusual ring in a quarry. Before regenerating into a silicon being during a nuclear meltdown, it possessed her causing her to run around chirping, “Eldrach MUST live,” while dressed in pink and white Andy Pandy overalls. Trust me-Sarah Jane fans find it unforgettable. So I was particularly irate that the late Ms. Sladen was not getting the respect she was due.

I swear I really did look up all Sarah Jane’s episodes on bbc.com.uk. Every single one. Apparently I just didn’t pay any attention to what I was looking at. I wrote in my previous post, “I am forever humiliated that I do not remember the title of the episode.” Surprise! I had no idea then what humiliation is. Humiliation is announcing this anomaly at a convention panel only to discover that everyone in the audience very clearly remember the title: “Hand of Fear”. That same “Hand of Fear” that I just mentioned above as Sarah Jane’s last episode. You would have thought I might have put it together just from the title. A stone hand in a quarry? “Hand of Fear”? Well, duh.

Now that I know the truth, I can go back to bbc.com.uk episode guide: 2nd episode, fourteenth season, fourth doctor (Tom Baker) and review “Hand of Fear”, and see that everything I thought I was looking for is all right there. I can’t imagine how I managed to miss it. The plot summary mentions the quarry and the hand and the silicon being, There’s even a picture which includes Sarah Jane in the infamous overalls. And yet…I can only suppose that I conflated the title “Hand of Fear” with the story from some other episode, and then failed to look carefully because I thought I already knew what it was.

So I screwed up. My heartfelt apologies to all. There are no missing Sarah Jane episodes. The BBC did not screw up. I promise to do better next time.

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