I was not around when the Doctor Who episode 'The Abominable Snowmen' aired in 1967. I'm one of those North American guys that accidentally caught a few episodes of the original show replaying nightly on the U.S. PBS station that was beamed to me on cable in Canada. While cheap looking, I loved the stories, characters, actors, well just about everything about the show.
Nowadays, with the Internet around, I've gotten a chance to dig deeper in the Doc Who universe. That, and the relaunched series has made my interest even greater these days. So, I am going back and trying to watch from the beginning in order to better understand the characters, and so forth. Unfortunately many of the really old episodes are 'lost episodes' and there really is no way to watch them other than by listening to fan made audio recordings (Doctor Who: The Abominable Snowmen & The Web of Fear), still photographs and the like. Some of this is of such poor quality I am finding it tough to get through this series. It's rough slogging it though muddied audio while trying to figure out what that black and white blob is on the screen. I find with some of these reconstructed episodes that I actually am gaining nothing but misery trying to gets some bit of a story out of them.
I had made it from the beginning (Doctor Who: The Beginning (An Unearthy Child / The Daleks / The Edge of Destruction)) to this episode when during episode three or four of this story, the quality of the video/audio reconstruction that I currently have available to me was just so bad I threw up my hands and just about gave up on trying to watch this story altogether. I mean, I would like to get through all the televised stories but man, enough is enough, I'm doing this for entertainment not a research project. That's when I realized that in 2011 they have released a handful of the Target novelizations of the series on Kindle format... and the episode I was currently watching was one of them! What a great opportunity to try one out! I didn't have to give up on my quest to go through the televised stories from beginning to end AND I could actually get a more detailed/understandable story. I wouldn't have to force myself to slog through a really rough reproduction which I really would not have any fun doing.
I am so glad I did. Doctor Who and the Abominable Snowmen is not a tough read. It's not even a really long book. I am a slow reader these days so I sat back and enjoyed it in an afternoon, many though could probably finish this in hours or maybe even less. What I have gotten from this book is one heckuva great Doctor Who story! The Second Doctor as played by Patrick Troughton is still pretty new to me. The episodes available to me up to this point have all been basically reproductions, other than one, Doctor Who: Tomb of the Cybermen (Special Edition). This story, as it is written felt so much more grandiose to me than probably what could have been passed off in the actual episodes. All the characters were well fleshed out. I really felt like I knew them all. The story goes from a small scale to a large, the whole planet, maybe the whole universe could be threatened. Overall a great read.
I've read a bunch of the New Series Adventures based on the relaunched series, some are good, some aren't. This is now one of my faves. I hope the BBC or whoever is in charge of publishing Doc Who stuff continues re-releasing the old material. It's really nice to be able to read about the other doctors. Especially for someone that is just starting out. Plus, being in Canada, fat chance I'll ever see these in a store so releasing them in my favourite format.. Kindle is fantastic! It makes them so easy to get, read, and enjoy! I will definitely be grabbing the other re-released past Doctor books that I can find in the Kindle store!