Viewers tuning in for the start of Doctor Who's fifth season could have been forgiven for thinking that there was a new production team in charge. In fact the crediting of Peter Bryant as producer and Victor Pemberton as story editor on The Tomb of the Cybermen was merely a one-off trial run for what Innes Lloyd hoped would eventually become a permanent arrangement.
Thus on the following story, The Abominable Snowmen, Lloyd regained his usual producer credit while Bryant reverted to story editor and Pemberton to his uncredited assistant. It was not until later in the season that Lloyd was finally granted his wish to move on to pastures new and Bryant was allowed to take over from him. Bryant's eventual successor as story editor - Pemberton having by this point become aware that he was not cut out for the job - was a young freelance writer named Derrick Sherwin, who brought in his own uncredited assistant in the person of another young freelancer, Terrance Dicks.
Unlike previous changes of production team, these behind-the-scenes developments had little discernible impact on the style and content of the Doctor's adventures. Bryant very much approved of the way in which Lloyd had handled the series and the direction in which he had steered it and saw no need for any major shake-up. The transition was thus a smooth one; a factor that no doubt contributed greatly to the remarkable consistency of quality attained by the season - a season that many now consider a strong contender for the title of best in the series' history.
On 1 July 1967, viewers of Doctor Who had seen the Dalek race apparently destroyed in the seventh and final instalment of The Evil of the Daleks. Less than a year later, however, the machine-creatures from Skaro were back on the nation's screens in a repeat transmission of the very story in which they had been so soundly defeated. This was the first instance of any Doctor Who story being given a second airing in the UK, the only previous repeat having been a reshowing of the series' opening episode, An Unearthly Child, just one week after its original transmission.
The repeat of The Evil of the Daleks was also unique in that it was actually incorporated into the ongoing narrative of the series itself, being presented as an attempt by the Doctor to give newcomer Zoe Heriot, played by Wendy Padbury, a taste of what she could be letting herself in for by joining him and Jamie on their travels. Although the production team did not go so far as to edit a reprise of The Wheel in Space into the first episode of the repeat, they nevertheless ensured that viewers were reminded of the link between the two stories by having a short conversation between the Doctor and Zoe dubbed onto the beginning of the episode, immediately after the opening titles and music. This went as follows:
The Doctor: 'Now as I remember, Zoe, it all started when Jamie and I discovered somebody making off with the TARDIS.' Zoe: 'But what about those Daleks you showed me?' The Doctor: 'We're coming to that, Zoe. Just let me show you the story from the beginning...'
Although the last episode of The Wheel in Space and the first episode of the repeat were transmitted in consecutive weeks, the repeat itself did not have an uninterrupted run; there were two Saturdays without Doctor Who (originally scheduled to be only one) following the third episode, to make way for the BBC's coverage of the Wimbledon tennis tournament.
The story resumed with the fourth episode on 13 July 1968, and the seventh and final episode went out three weeks later on 3 August. The sixth season began the following Saturday, 10 August, with the opening episode of The Dominators (which included dialogue referring back to the repeat), so from the viewer's perspective it was almost as if there had been no between-seasons break at all.