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K-9 and Company: A Girl's Best Friend

UK 1981
produced by
John Nathan Turner for BBC
directed by John Black
starring Elisabeth Sladen, John Leeson (voice), Bill Fraser, Ian Sears, Colin Jeavons, Sean Chapman, Mary Wimbush, Linda Polan, Gillian Martell, Neville Barber, John Quarmby, Nigel Gregory, Stephen Oxley, Sue Crosland, Terry Forestal, John Glentoran
written by Terence Dudley, music by Peter howell, title song by Ian Levine, Fiachra Trench, visual effects by Mat Irvine

Sarah Jane Smith, K9, Doctor Who spin-off

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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First and foremost, this is a Doctor Who-spin-off, and several leaps of reason were made to make this spin-off work ... so don't be surprised if you don't understand all the implications here.


Former Doctor Who-companion Sarah Jane Smith (Elisabeth Sladen) wants to pay a visit to her aunt Lavinia (Mary Wimbush), only to not find her but a robot dog, K9 (voiced by John Leeson), instead, as it turns out a gift from (and former companion of) Doctor Who. Together with Sarah's computer nerd nephew BRendan (Ian Sears) they go investigating - but before you know it, Brendan in abducted, and Sarah and K9 find more and more traces leading to a witches coven - which is ultimately ran by George Tracy (Colin Jeavons), foreman on aunt Lavinia's farm. And in the end, Sarah Jane and K9 can dash in just in time, when Brendan is about to be made the coven's latest human sacrifice, and K9 uses his stungun on several of the coven members ... and the world (?) is saved once more.

And aunt Lavinia?

Oh, she had nothing to do with any of this, she just had to leave for America, and a cable saying so just never reached Sarah Jane.


Let's face it, spin-offs are almost invariable inferior to the series they originated from (with the possible exception of Frasier), and the concepts to make them work are often incredibly strained ... as is the case with K-9 and Company, a show that unites two fan-favourites among the Doctor Who-sidekicks - who never shared the screen on the show actually, and throws them into a low budget earthbound pseudo-horror story that would have fared better without either of them - as somehow, neither Sarah Jane nor K9 seem to go too well with witches and stuff. So we are left with out-of-place characters trying to make their way through an ill-paced plot (ill-paced in part because the characters are so out of place) and a horror story with no shocks at all.


K-9 and Company was supposed to be a pilot but was ultimately never picked up as a series, but interestingly enough, Sarah Jane (as played by Elisabeth Sladen) got her own spin-off-series after all as late as 2007, The Sarah Jane Adventures, with K9 (as voiced by John Leeson) making irregular guest appearances.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD