The hilarious, rumbustious and gloriously indiscreet autobiography of the most famous and best-loved Doctor Who
Tom Baker’s autobiography covers his childhood in the poor spirited Irish community in Liverpool, during which he developed a penchant for lying, a passion for football and a suspicion of priests; his six years as a monk – in which he spent much time trying to avoid eye contact with others; his struggling times as an out-of-work actor and; on to appearances alongside Olivier at the National Theatre, to work with Pasolino and, finally, his time as the ultimate Doctor Who.
Far exceeding the usual expectations of an actorly autobiography, Who on Earth Is Tom Baker? is a blackly comic scream. Baker is the kind of man who could drink the old off-the-wagon Anthony Hopkins under the table. He is a natural writer of Rabbelasian, or at least Spike Milligan, proportions and is, of course, one of the most familiar faces in the British acting world.
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One of the great British television phenomena of the 60's and 70's, known to all who are now entering or firmly placed in mid-life, was the advent of Doctor Who. This original and most British of television series chronicled the travels and tribulations of the famous Doctor Who and his merry band of followers. Tom Baker, though not the first but probably the most unforgettable of the actors who took on this role, has published an autobiography that not only lets us explore the man made famous but also the man himself. Tom inhabited the world of television production agencies, the BBC with its cast of thousands, and the drinking haunts of Soho with the likes of Jeffery Bernard, Anthony Hopkins and actors for whom feast and famine were a daily way of life.
Tom, with his expressive face and kind eyes was born in Liverpool to a raucous and lively Irish family where love and a good respect for the teachings of the Catholic Church were able to prepare him for an interesting and fulfilling life. In fact, Tom's early experiences with the church involved a trial at a monastery for an unsuccessful preparation as a priest and an insight into the daily workings of these institutions. A slow starting but rapidly improving acting career was followed by time spent pulling pints and on London construction sites before the big break. Then came with the casting agent and the meeting that allowed for instant world-wide recognition for the famous Doctor Who that still exists today.
The style of the story is very much that of a black comedy with a marriage, children and a certain fixation with a lawnmower and the mowing of the grass around his own gravestone, making for an enjoyable read. He is now happily married and living in a rural utopia outside of London, millions of miles and light years away from the hectic and all- consuming career of both straight acting and in the television role that has made him famous in more that 70 countries. --Brian ReinkerFrom the Back Cover:
Growing up in a poor, spirited Irish community in Liverpool in the 1930's, Tom Baker had modest ambitions: to be an orphan, to have a wooden leg, to be a sinner. Instead he became a monk, coveting smells and staring at other men's clogs. No longer 'randy for martyrdom', Baker left the monastery for National Service and then became a struggling actor. He learned to drink Anthony Hopkins under the table and to take the oddest jobs, while also managing to land parts alongside Olivier in the National Theatre and work with Pasolini. He finally gave up his stint as a builder's labourer to become the ultimate Doctor Who.
'Who on Earth Is Tom Baker?' is a richly coloured, startlingly wild autobiography that reads like a black comedy. Full of anarchic humour, surreal, ribald and revealing anecdotes, it can be favourably compared with the stories of Spike Milligan, Peter Ustinov and David Niven.
' All my life I had been taught nonsense by priests and teachers…it was no problem for me to say I came from another world and could go back and forth in time.'
"This is a man worth listening to. Whether he is scandalising a waitress, reducing a photographer to helpless laughter or making serious points about the staging of Jacobean drama, he can deliver the unexpected faster than a Hitchcock rewrite of the Alamo."
GILLIAN GLOVER, ' Scotsman '
"An hilarious and unusual autobiography for an actor. There is none of the self – serving trail through evolutionary progress to greatness; the famous names don't hit the page with the thud of concrete but with the lightness of a feather".
PENNY FOX ,' The Glasgow Herald '
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Book Description Harper Collins, London U.K., 1997. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. Harper Collins, London, 1997. Hard Cover.***SIGNED and dated 97*** Book Condition: Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Good. vii-xviii. 267pp. inscription to title page. minor edge wear to d/j. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall! We do not stock ex-library or Book Club editions. We offer a money back guarantee if you are not fully satisfied, please contact us if you have any questions. Signed by Author(s). Bookseller Inventory #O. 010713143811. Signed by Author(s). Bookseller Inventory # 000760
Book Description Harper Collins, 1997. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0002558343 We guarantee all of our items - customer service and satisfaction are our top priorities. Please allow 4 - 14 business days for Standard shipping, within the US. Bookseller Inventory # TM-0002558343
Book Description Harper Collins, 1997. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0002558343 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW4.0000557