Repost: Delia by Karen Harte
I was thinking about my favourite female creators (as it’s International Women’s Day) and immediately thought of Doctor Who’s early producer, Verity Lambert, but was then reminded that she was not the only female creator who put an early stamp on the show and I thought of Karen Harte’s book about Delia Derbyshire so I decided to give this a re-post.
A month or so ago, as part of my trying to overcome my shyness and general awkwardness around people, I volunteered to do a review for the Comics Lab. They duly called my bluff and so I had to pick a book to review. I ended up picking Delia by Karen Harte for a number of reasons. Mainly, it seemed, to me, to fit in with the overall philosophy of the Comics Lab itself. That being that you can make comics about anything and that that they don’t all have to fit into the same box. This going to be a different kind of review as I am going to go into the personal reasons why I enjoyed the book.
Back in 2013, as part of the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who, the BBC produced a documentary, An Adventure in Space and Time, about the beginnings of the show. Not only did I gain a love of the old Doctor Who from it, I discovered that there was a pioneering woman behind the scenes. Producer Verity Lambert, a lady I have come to greatly respect for her contribution to the show and television in general, was an integral part of its initial success.
This is cleverly mixed in with Delia’s own words to capture the ideas behind her life’s work. It is a beautiful way to highlight the work of such a pioneer. As a Doctor Who fan, I really welcomed someone shining a light on Delia as well as clueing me into her part in the history of the show. I’d like to see more of a spotlight on her. If you can get your hands on a copy of this book, I’d highly recommend it. I’ll leave you with the piece that Delia Derbyshire is most famous for. Untouched by modern hands which is the way she preferred it.