Welcome to the News & Reviews section here at Doctor Who Online! This is where you will find all the latest Doctor Who related news and reviews split up into easy to use sections - each section is colour coded for your convenience. The latest items can be found at the top, and older items follow down the page.

Archived news and reviews can be accessed by clicking on the relevant area on the News / Reviews Key panels to the right.

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16 August 2016

Our friends over at Lasermad are known for creating some weird and wonderful nixie devices but this time they really have made time fly:

"Hovering just above the ground, the Beacon floats in defiance of gravity, suspended by unseen forces. An orange glow begins to form around delicately crafted wires, surrounded by rarefied neon, inside the giant single glass tube that forms the main part of its structure as it prepares to transmit another sequence of apparently random numbers. 

The sheer scale of the internal electrode structure implies this was intended to be seen clearly over vast distances, possibly even the other side of a large room. Again it signals to an unknown observer. 

'01:08 am'

May we present the world's first and only levitated nixie clocks. Once set up correctly it will hover above the base for as long as it is powered, displaying the time and date on digits of glowing metal and glass."

You can see it in action over on their Kickstarter for this project:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/lasermad/time-flies-levitating-nixie-clock

or visit their shop https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/Lasermad for more down to Earth nixie gadgets, clocks and board games.

[Source: Lasermad]

 

24 July 2016

John Barrowman has given fresh hope that a new TV series of Torchwood may be making its way back to our screens.

Speaking to Comic Con HQ in San Diego at the weekend, Barrowman explained how the wheels are already in motion to bring the show back:

“I’ve already set the ball rolling to get Torchwood back (and that’s an exclusive here at Comic Con), I have a first telephone conversation on Monday about moving it forward to see how we can get it back on television.”

Barrowman then went on to talk about his new Torchwood comic, explaining how its success will help the cause:

“The fans know me well enough, I’m only going to say it if I really mean it and believe it, and if you do believe in Torchwood as you all do and say online, get the comic, just get the series going; it’s like a kickstarter - if you buy the comic you’ll show the support and also it’ll be a huge success because we need Captain Jack back on the screens!”

Watch the interview in full in the player, below:


[Source: Comic Con HQ]

14 July 2016

Our friends over at Toybox Treasures recently got in touch with DWO with some rather exciting news regarding a classic series VFX Dalek prop that they've recently discovered.

The Dalek prop, which featured in the 1973 serial 'Planet Of The Daleks', was given to the daughter of Fred Elphick; a worker at EMI Central Research in Hayes, where he designed parts for TV cameras and equipment. On several occasions Fred would speak with Roy Field of Pinewood Studios on his visits to the site, which is where they formed a friendship.

The Dalek is modelled on the Louis Marx toy from the 1960's, where a mould was made and subsequent Daleks reproduced in plaster - a cheap material to save money due to the sheer volume they needed to produce for the cave scenes. If you look closely, you can actually see mould join on the rear of the Dalek. The other benefit from making the Daleks out of plaster was because they needed to be weighty as there was going to be a lot of liquid emptied on them by the Doctor. They made some alternations to the dome ears, the eye stalk was a more accurate looking eye stalk and made out of a golf tea, also a total rework of the gun box section.

Unfortunately, after filming, the majority - if not all of the Dalek models were thrown away, and as a result they are now extremely rare. Roy kept this prop and gave it to a friend before his death in 2002. It is
now in the collection of Matt Doe of Toybox Treasures who is inviting fans to make offers on this rare collectable and encourage offers to be emailed to: sales@toybox-treasures.co.uk.

Matt Doe explains his excitement at the find:

"All that was going through my head was "I'm going to own a screen used/ production Dalek!". Every who fans dream is to get a full size Dalek and this was one step closer. Due to the rarity and high costs of owning a full sized screen-used Dalek, this is a more affordable way of owning one, even if it is 6" in height."  

+. Check out this item and more at www.toybox-treasures.co.uk
+  Find out more about the VFX Daleks at www.dalek6388.co.uk

Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!
+  Follow @DrWhoOnline on Instagram!

[Sources: DWO; Matt Doe; Dalek 6388]


 

1 July 2016

Manufacturer: Big Finish Productions

Writers: Matt Fitton & Andrew Smith

RRP: £20.00 (CD) / £20.00 (Download)

Release Date: June 2016

Reviewed by: Bedwyr Gullidge for Doctor Who Online


2.1 Power Cell by Matt Fitton

"Osgood and Captain Josh Carter are sent to investigate the disappearance of a UNIT scientist.

Meanwhile, alien technology has fallen into the hands of Lyme Industries, and Kate Stewart can't persuade the company’s CEO, Felicity Lyme, to give it back.

But UNIT find themselves fighting a third battle when innocent people start to die. Who are the mysterious assassins? And what does Felicity Lyme want with top secret alien technology?"

UNIT is back! Jemma Redgrave and Ingrid Oliver return to their roles of Kate Stewart and Osgood for a second outing with Big Finish. UNIT: Extinction was the skilled storyteller’s first venture into the world of modern Doctor Who created in 2005 and such was its success the team have returned for a second outing in a proper, full-fledged drama featuring the popular characters seen in only a handful of onscreen stories. It is such a joy to have more adventures with these individuals because it allows for more time to be dedicated to them alone, for instance, more scenes that they dominate instead of the Doctor, which aids their personal growth and builds that connection with the audience still further. As an example, the story opens with Osgood at a pub quiz, something which there simply would not be time for during a television episode that needs to grab the audience’s attention immediately and to engage them enough to quell the impulse to change the channel.

Osgood and Kate Stewart are the leading stars of the series and hopefully draw in new listeners to the wonders of Big Finish audio adventures. Ingrid Oliver’s Osgood has become a popular choice for cosplay fans but she is far more than a clothes horse and is a wonderfully rounded character; her likeable nature without question and she even uses a cloister bell message alert tone. Similarly, Kate Stewart maintains an approachable connection to her inferiors, despite her seniority, much like her father did. Jemma Redgrave is very respectful of the legacy passed down to her by her character's onscreen father, the sadly missed Doctor Who legend Nicholas Courtney. This story also draws an element from the UNIT era of Third Doctor Jon Pertwee which the Brigadier played such a key role in.

Writer Matt Fitton creates a tale which shines an investigatory light on Whitehall figures in a similar way that the Third Doctor's era provided scathing critiques on those Governmental types, such as Chinn in The Claws of Axos or Walker the Parliamentary Private Secretary in The Sea Devils. The timing of this subject matter also seems appropriate given the current political turmoil in Westminster, with Kate Stewart stating categorically, “I don't trust the Government” and seemingly capturing the mood of a nation. In the UK we fear the intrusion of public companies, siphoning off our most valuable resources for the sake of profit margins, the privatisation of the NHS for example, is a constant concern these days. For UNIT it is their alien technology which they place the highest value upon and so must be recovered from the hands of the unknown but wonderfully intriguing Miss Lyme, expertly played by Alice Krige. These competing ideologies, supposedly in partnership and on the same side but yet the potential selling off of those shared secrets, adds further to the developing intrigue.

However this story is not only a satirical perspective on the Government, as the first part draws to a close with an action sequence of unidentified, but clearly alien, creatures attacking Osgood in her own flat. Things are developing quickly and the adventure has only just begun…


2.2 Death In Geneva by Andrew Smith

"With few people left to trust, and with assassins on their tail, Kate and Osgood race to UNIT Command in Geneva. Will General Avary be able to help them?

But when death follows UNIT all the way from the English countryside to the snowy slopes of the Alps, Captain Carter finds himself in a race against time.

As the body count rises, Kate struggles to separate friend from foe, danger circles Osgood ever closer, and, high in the mountains, Josh comes face to face with the enemy..."

In a move borrowed from Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart himself, Kate and Osgood head to Geneva to gain support from UNIT Central Command. Unlike the television production of the 1970’s the limitless scope of Big Finish allows listeners to follow the action to Geneva. Unfortunately, the danger follows too and even in Switzerland not everyone can be trusted. Slowly the UNIT team begin to unravel events and learn more about the mysterious Tengobushi as the bodies start piling up and innocent people are now being caught in the crossfire.

This episode starts with a bang and maintains that pace throughout, gripping the audience with numerous twists and turns along the way as Kate and Osgood come under seemingly constant attack. Continuing the work of Matt Fitton, Andrew Smith picks up the momentum created by the introductory first episode, skilfully teasing out more information for the developing plot. Although the Kate Stewart and Osgood pairing receive the bulk of the attention - and rightly so - they are in reality two thirds of a trio which also includes James Joyce as Captain Josh Carter. Admittedly Carter has a curiously convenient knack for turning up at the most opportune moment, which happens a lot in this four part story, but when under threat from lightning fast alien ninja warriors UNIT need a military leader and Joyce is perfect in his role - one which will be vital in the next episode…


2.3 The Battle Of The Tower by Andrew Smith

"The threat is now clear, and Kate Stewart retreats to UNIT HQ with her most trusted colleagues. She has no choice but to place the Black Archive into lockdown, and the Tower of London is where UNIT will make its stand.

While the capital sleeps, an alien horde is gathering, ready to rise from the shadows to attack Earth’s greatest defence force inside its own stronghold.

The Tower is infiltrated, and UNIT must hold the line. At any cost. Lock and load..."

The action packed pace of Death in Geneva continues as UNIT retreat to the stronghold of the Tower of London - first identified as a UNIT base in The Christmas Invasion. This episode also allows a period of downtime to expand on the plot as UNIT attempt to identify and understand the alien trinket which has drawn the Tengobushi to London so they can recover it. Osgood and Kate Stewart are able to investigate the artefact, postulating why the Tengobushi want it back so badly and revealing crucial plot points required for the story’s final resolution to the audience.

Like an episode of Game of Thrones, these early parts of the episode provide material that adds depth and detail to the story that would be quickly skirted over in a Doctor Who television episode, limited by a finite running time.

Other nice story touches include the revelation that the Yeoman warders are in fact members of UNIT capable of reporting to Kate Stewart. There are also lovely references for fans of the televised output such as name checking Malcolm who appeared in Planet of the Dead and the Ravens needing batteries as mentioned in The Day of the Doctor.  When the Tengobushi do reach the Tower and begin their attack, the action comes thick and fast, the accompanying soundscape headed by director Ken Bentley aiding in the dynamism that builds nicely for a spectacular conclusion… 


2.4 Ice Station Alpha by Matt Fitton

"Caught between human greed and an unstoppable alien power, Kate Stewart leads her closest allies on one final, desperate mission. This could be the very last chance for the human race.

But the UNIT team has been declared rogue, and ruthless military forces are in pursuit as they race across the globe. Kate calls Lieutenant Sam Bishop to their aid, while Josh and Osgood head out across the frozen Antarctic plains to try and prevent a disaster no-one else knows is coming."

In the concluding part we return to the original themes outlined at the very beginning, casting a scathing comment on the spurious methods of big business, plus raising doubts about the true motives of those individuals supposedly working to protect us. The tale also raises an interesting argument regarding UNIT’s own use of alien technologies and the dangers of allowing unregulated individuals equal free-reign. However whilst the small-minded humans argue amongst themselves a much more substantial power is closing in on the eye of the storm in Antartica…

This second adventure with Kate Stewart and Osgood is another triumph; superbly combining intelligent plotting from writers Matt Fitton and Andrew Smith with explosive action in a journey across planet Earth - the likes of which would be difficult to do justice to on a television budget. In a refreshing move, the lines between good and evil are masterfully blurred to deliver an excellent adventure which grips and thrills the listener throughout.



+  ORDER
this CD via Amazon.co.uk!

30 June 2016

Doctor Who Showrunner, Steven Moffat, is going to be honoured by the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) at its graduation ceremony on Tuesday 5th July 2016 at Thomas Coats Memorial Baptist Church, Paisley - a ceremony that will, ironically, see him become The Doctor! :)

Steven, who was born and bred in Paisley, is best known for his role as writer and executive producer on award-winning BBC programmes, Doctor Who and Sherlock.  He was originally an English teacher working at Cowdenknowes High School in Greenock for over three years, and went on to experience success with his first foray into TV as the writer of the hit children's drama about a school newspaper, Press Gang, which ran from 1989-93.

Steven, who was awarded an OBE in the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to television, said:

"It's always a joy to go home - but to go back to Paisley to receive a doctorate feels like I finally made it. I feel very honoured, and more importantly very happy."

Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal & Vice-Chancellor of University of the West of Scotland, said:

“Steven is quite simply one of the country’s greatest screenwriters and through his work on both the small and big screen he has brought joy to millions of viewers worldwide. He is a further example of success from our wonderful town of Paisley in a long line of truly successful people brought up in the town.  Steven is great role model for anyone, not just our students, and demonstrates that your path in life will be determined by your own passion for the things you believe in and that anyone can have success if they work hard. Steven is a hugely deserving recipient of this Honorary Doctorate and we are delighted to honour him in his home town.”

[Source: UWS]

 

30 June 2016

DWO are issuing a warning to any Doctor Who fans in the USA considering bidding on a Cyberman helmet, claiming to be from the 1968 episode 'The Wheel In Space', in today's 'Profiles In History, Hollywood 83' auction.

The auction catalogue is claiming the helmet was screen used in the serial, but having researched the item, and sought expert advice from prop making guru's JBReplicas, DWO understand this to not be the case. If you look closely at the helmet being sold at the auction (image to the right), you will see the chin of the cyberman is pointy, as well as various discrepancies for the eye and mouth holes. Below this we have included an image from the cyberman used in the actual episode, and, as you can see, it is completely different.

We have included the official description for the lot (via Invaluable), below:

"968. Doctor Who screen used “Cyberman” helmet from the 1968 episode “Wheel in Space.” (BBC-TV, 1963-1989) One of the earliest versions of the Cybermen, the fearsome cyborgs in the Doctor Who universe. Constructed of fiberglass and painted silver to appear like metallic alloy. Following its use in the 1968 episode “Wheel in Space,” the BBC repurposed this helmet for personal appearance exhibitions in the early 1970s by adding metal mesh behind the eyes and mouth to hide and protect the actor in the suit. The clear acrylic “handlebars” were repurposed and replaced with plastic replacements. The back plate (held in place with putty during the production) is missing. Otherwise, in vintage fine condition. This helmet was donated by the BBC to The Doctor Who Experience in Llangollen, Wales where it was exhibited for several years; after which is was sold at Christie’s South Kensington 9 December 1999, lot 49. $15,000 - $20,000" 

The head, if sold, could fetch between $15,000-$20,000, but if this turns out (as we strongly believe) to not be a screen-used helmet, the actual figure which it is worth is between £150-£200!

DWO have contacted Profiles In History for comment... 

UPDATE - Friday 1st July 2016 
The auction has now ended and the cyberman helmet has sold for $22,500! DWO have still not heard back from the auctioneers...

Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!
+  Follow @DrWhoOnline on Instagram!

[Sources: DWO; Julian Vince; JBReplicas; Invaluable]


 

30 June 2016

Doctor Who Magazine have sent DWO the cover and details for Issue 501 of DWM.

Following the spectacular 500th issue, Doctor Who Magazine is continuing its celebrations with an issue dedicated entirely to Tom Baker and the Fourth Doctor’s era of Doctor Who. 

Tom Baker: The Ultimate Interview is an extravaganza split into several gripping parts, in which Tom talks about life, death and, of course, Doctor Who…

"Life is too short to be dull. Be interesting. Because not very much else matters does it? In large areas of our lives, hardly anything matters at all. I mean, nothing can beat being with loving friends, and a few wines, and a few beers, and a few lies, and a few yarns. And to still be adored after 40-odd years… yeah that’s the life. Maybe I’m the longest-serving actor, in the whole history of actors, who’s actually still, 40-odd years later, adored for the same part and enjoying it in the same way. When I get sent messages from middle-aged men… or from the wives of middle-aged men, who say, ‘Tell Mr Baker he cannot imagine how important he was to my beloved husband when he was a boy’… it moves me deeply to think about it. I was just going to work. I didn’t know, to begin with, how far-reaching this role would be. I was aware of the excitement, and the generosity, and the affection of the fans, but how could I ever have dreamed of all this?" 

The interview extravaganza is split into seven gripping parts: The Unbreakable Tom Baker, The Insatiable Tom Baker, The Impeccable Tom Baker (with June Hudson), The Irrepressible Tom Baker, The Unstoppable Tom Baker (with Louise Jameson, John Leeson and Geoffrey Beevers), The Unforgettable Tom Baker and The Irreplaceable Tom Baker.

Also featured in the magazine is Part One of brand-new comic strip The Pestilent Heart, an extended Gallifrey Guardian reporting on the latest news from the set of the new series, and DWM’s issue 500 celebrations, competitions and the much-anticipated Cave of 500 Eyes answers.

The collectable souvenir edition, available from 30th June and priced £5.99, comes in a polybag containing four amazing art cards, two classic mini-posters, and a massive multi-Doctor poster.

**Anyone interested in purchasing signed prints of Tom Baker, as seen in this issue, can do so via the photographer for the issue; Legend Studios - www.theworldoflegend.com

+  Doctor Who Magazine Issue #501 is out on Today, priced £5.99.
+  Check Out The DWO Guide to Doctor Who Magazine!

[Source: Doctor Who Magazine]

23 June 2016

Manufacturer: Big Finish Productions

Writer: Alan Barnes

RRP: £10.99 (CD) / £8.99 (Download)

Release Date: May 2016

Reviewed by: Bedwyr Gullidge for Doctor Who Online


"When the TARDIS lands in Brighton the Doctor and Romana have the chance to spend some time at the seaside. But with it being too early for the opening of the Pavilion, they have to look elsewhere for their entertainment - perhaps Madame Tissot's travelling waxworks, recently arrived in town?

But they're not the only ones interested in her Exposition. When an unusual thief commits an unusual theft, the time travellers are on the case.

What exactly is the sinister secret of Goole's Gallery? Is Tissot's heading for a meltdown? And what does it all have to do with the head of Marie Antoinette?"

Continuing the fifth series of Fourth Doctor adventures with Big Finish is the penultimate tale Gallery of Ghouls featuring the iconic Tom Baker in the lead role and his companion Romana played by Lalla Ward. Writer Alan Barnes skilfully manages to deliver a story in keeping with the comedic tone synonymous with Douglas Adams’ era as script editor of Doctor Who’s television output during Season 17. For example, early exchanges between the two leads regarding the randomiser and seagulls potentially being agents of the Black Guardian are delightfully played as both actors still retain their chemistry after all these years.

The Doctor and Romana find themselves with time to kill whilst waiting for the Brighton Pavillion to open but fortunately there are not one, but two waxworks in town to pass the next 18 years. The tale includes mysterious waxworks, automatons, an android and an amorphous creature in a mixed menagerie which muddies the storytelling a tad. Similarly it is tricky for the casual listener to decipher whether this is intended as a historically accurate retelling of the rise of Madame Tussaud’s with a number of conflicting references and the backstory of Madam Tissot. However putting these quibbles aside, the strength in the adventure is found in the perfectly balanced cast.

The wonderful Celia Imrie, a talented actress well-versed in both comedy and drama and already known in the Doctor Who universe as Miss Kizlet in The Bells of St John, plays Madame Tissot a French artist who skilfully creates wax representations of significant historical moments and figures. Her French accent brings back memories of popular BBC comedy ‘Allo Allo’. This is by no means a criticism as that style complements the comedic nature of the story, helping to deliver a thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining romp. Imrie is ably supported by Stephen Critchlow as Tissot’s lovable and faithful ‘Mummy’s Boy’ son Noni and fellow experienced actor Nickolas Grace playing the enigmatic Mr Goole. All of whom firmly enter the spirit of the piece, not concerned with a threat to planet Earth from a malevolent force but possessing a lighter tone, despite some grim ingredients.

It is an interesting premise to consider a time when travelling waxworks, depicting violent and gruesome scenes from history would pass for entertainment, but it is still a genre which continues to this day with the Dungeon franchises in London, York, Dublin, Amsterdam and even San Francisco. Yet despite the internal analysis of why human beings would be entertained by such grotesque fare, plenty of humour is found within Alan Barnes’ witty script and it is so expertly delivered by a great guest cast that one cannot fail but thoroughly enjoy the story.



+  ORDER
this CD via Amazon.co.uk!

23 June 2016

The BBC have released the first promo picture of Pearl Mackie on her first day filming for Series 10 of Doctor Who.

Pearl was on set filming scenes at Cardiff University, which is doubling for St Luke's University in Bristol. Reports from the scene suggest there is fake snow around the campus, hinting at a Winter setting.

+  Series 10 of Doctor Who will air in 2017.

[Source: BBC Worldwide]

   

17 June 2016

Manufacturer: Big Finish Productions

Writer: James Goss

RRP: £10.99 (CD) / £8.99 (Download)

Release Date: May 2016

Reviewed by: Bedwyr Gullidge for Doctor Who Online


Donna Noble has never been lucky in love.

So when, one day, her Prince does come, she is thrilled to have the wedding of all weddings to look forward to. Though the Doctor isn’t holding his breath for an invitation. And her future mother-in-law is certainly not amused.

But on the big day itself, Donna finds her castle under siege from the darkest of forces, marching at the head of a skeleton army.

When it looks like even the Doctor can’t save the day, what will Queen Donna do to save her people from Death itself?"

Concluding the trio of new adventures for the Tenth Doctor and Donna on Big Finish is a refreshingly original story from skilled writer James Goss, which offers intrigue, grim revelations and an unexpected resolution. On a darker level it exposes how a public blindly following the instruction of it's masters can have devastating consequences; some times their intentions may be, no pun intended, noble, but the price of peace is occasionally a very costly one indeed. Goss’ intelligent script is supported with some particularly strong imagery, easy for the listener to envisage, with a fairytale castle under siege from an army of skeletons and the familiar hooded figure of Death stalking the Earth.

As is so often the case in the life of Donna Noble when things suddenly seem to be going her way, disaster strikes. Although an unlikely Queen, Donna’s experience in times of crisis means that she is very capable and cool under pressure, taking charge of the situation and saving lives. Despite her brashness, Donna is a companion to be dismissed at your peril and possessing inscrutable morals, touched on so briefly in the television universe during Planet Of The Ood. However the additional breadth of storytelling facilitated by these new Big Finish adventures has allowed such subtlety to be explored further to the undoubted benefit of the character and something which Catherine Tate is clearly enjoying and thriving upon.

The performances from the whole cast are superb with the six central characters all expertly well rounded, such as Alice Krige as the deliciously facetious and sharp-tongued Queen Mum and Blake Ritson’s well meaning but lovably spineless Rudolph, adding to the strength of the unfolding drama. David Tennant in particular enjoys lovely dialogue, explaining that the Doctor is never ready when one of his companions decides to leave, nor does he ever get a chance to lick his wounds. The Tenth Doctor’s persona of fast talking bravado conceals the heartbreak of losing Rose Tyler, for instance, a departure which still hangs a heavy burden on his travels, but in this brief and rarest of moments the Time Lord’s vulnerability is fully exposed.

Donna’s ingenuity in cheating Death is wonderfully wicked, finding a way to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds, a classic Doctor Who scenario, with a style that is almost the antithesis of the show itself but in keeping with the uniqueness of this particular tale. The Doctor also gets an opportunity to show off his brilliance too and certain character’s attitudes are put in their place, crowning off a fantastic story that brings to a close these newly released Tenth Doctor Adventures.

With offerings of a consistently high standard produced by Big Finish, let’s hope that more stories featuring this brilliantly engaging Doctor and companion duo are to continue for many more years to come. This trio of new Tenth Doctor Adventures has been an unquestionable triumph and long may they continue with originality such as Death And The Queen.


16 June 2016

Manufacturer: Big Finish Productions

Writer: Jenny T. Colgan

RRP: £10.99 (CD) / £8.99 (Download)

Release Date: May 2016

Reviewed by: Bedwyr Gullidge for Doctor Who Online


Calibris. The spaceport planet where anything goes. Where anyone who doesn't want to be found can be lost, and where everything has its price. Where betentacled gangster Gully holds sway at the smugglers’ tavern, Vagabond’s Reach.

The alien Vacintians are trying to impose some order on the chaos. Soon the Doctor and Donna discover why. An illegal weapon is loose on the streets. A weapon that destroys lives… Slowly and agonisingly.

The Time Reaver."

If Technophobia was an attempt to recapture the atmosphere of 2008’s Series 4, Time Reaver steps out of the television set and into the Big Finish universe renowned for the limitless scope for storytelling. Set on a bustling intergalactic transport terminus, this story’s location would have proved tricky for a television production team to realise effectively, as would the key villain Gully and all his tentacles. Instead, through the excellent medium of audio storytelling and the assistance of a single image of the tentacled creature in question on the cover, the listener can fully immerse themselves into the fast paced action.

The plot of the story centres on the presence on the planet Calibris of a dangerous and valuable weapon, the Time Reaver. It has the ability to extend time potentially indefinitely, allowing people to savour precious moments for longer but sadly can also be used to provide agonising torture. Once again the realisation of a poor soul enduring this torment works incredibly well on audio, taking the listener into the mind of the subject and sharing the experience. It reminded me of a specific episode of American medical drama ER which guest starred Cynthia Nixon as a mother who had suffered a devastating stroke and the viewer witnessed the ‘locked in’ syndrome she was subsequently experiencing. Both are harrowing journeys and an excellent method of telling the story.

Gully is also very successful on audio, the rasping sliminess of a voice which shares similar tones to that of 1980’s villain Sil who first appeared in Vengeance on Varos, enhancing the skin-crawlingly grotesque creature. The bureaucratic Vacintians are however a bit bland and generic but Terry Molloy’s Officer Rone adds a relatable character despite those restrictions. Another triumph is Sabrina Bartlett as Cora, who sounds much younger than her years and delivers the story’s powerful emotional dimension.

Although a largely grim tale, Time Reaver’s extravagant setting helps elevate a simplistic story to the darkly atmospheric tale which tears through at a swift pace whilst taking the listener on a deeply emotional journey, feeling for the key characters affected by the Time Reaver and also those forced to endure it’s devastating power.


14 June 2016

Following his hilarious appearance in The Husbands Of River Song, Matt Lucas returns to Doctor Who from the opening episode of series 10 which starts filming next week in Cardiff (Monday 20th June).

Commenting on his return to Doctor Who, Matt Lucas, said:

“I’m chuffed to bits that Nardole is returning to the TARDIS for some more adventures. I loved acting with Peter and I’m excited to work with Pearl.”

Bringing her energy and zest to the show, Pearl Mackie embarks on her first week of filming as she takes up the role of the Doctor’s companion. In her first major television role following her West End appearance in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, she’ll be bursting on to screens in the opening episode.

Steven Moffat, lead writer and Executive Producer, added:

“Delighted and slightly amazed to be welcoming Matt Lucas back on to the TARDIS - and this time it’s not just for Christmas, he’s sticking around. One of the greatest comedy talents on planet Earth is being unleashed on all of time and space.” 

Stephanie Hyam will play a guest cast role in the new series and is recognised for her performance as Lily Clarke in Jekyll & Hyde. She’s also appeared in Peaky Blinders, Murdered by My Boyfriend, and Sherlock.

The opening episode of series 10 is written by Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat, executive produced by Brian Minchin, produced by Peter Bennett and directed by Lawrence Gough. The second episode in the new series has been crafted by award winning screenwriter Frank Cottrell-Boyce.

Block 2 writers are Sarah Dollard (writer of acclaimed episode Face the Raven) and Mike Bartlett (multi award winning Doctor Foster).                                                                                                                                                                              

Doctor Who is a BBC Cymru Wales produced drama for BBC One. It will return in December 2016 with a Christmas Special, followed by the new series in 2017.

+ Series 10 of Doctor Who airs in 2017.

10 June 2016

Manufacturer: Big Finish Productions

Writer: Matt Fitton

RRP: £10.99 (CD) / £8.99 (Download)

Release Date: May 2016

Reviewed by: Bedwyr Gullidge for Doctor Who Online


When the Doctor and Donna visit London’s Technology Museum for a glimpse into the future, things don’t go to plan.

The most brilliant IT brain in the country can’t use her computer. More worrying, the exhibits are attacking the visitors, while outside, people seem to be losing control of the technology that runs their lives.

Is it all down to simple human stupidity, or is something more sinister going on?

Beneath the streets, the Koggnossenti are waiting. For all of London to fall prey to technophobia..."

The Tenth Doctor and Donna Noble are back! It might not be on our television screens but we are treated to the next best thing, a trio of wonderful Big Finish audio adventures.

David Tennant and Catherine Tate slip effortlessly back into their roles, Tate in particular sounds a lot more comfortable as Donna now released of the burden to perform for the camera. Tennant's Tenth Doctor is full of energy and listeners are reintroduced to Donna the ‘super temp’ through another temp, Bex, with the two bonding immediately through shared experiences of agency work. Our favourite Noble of Chiswick becomes a driving force in the tale with her humanity, bravery and deduction skills eventually proving critical to the resolution. This story fits comfortably into the 2008 series with writer Matt Fitton neatly recapturing the feel and atmosphere of that era of televised offerings with an interesting variation on an ‘invasion Earth’ scenario.

Set a couple of years into our future, technology has continued to develop with the M-Pad from Meadow Digital the latest product to hit the high street. However, the M-Pad has not come from the traditional technological innovators of Silicon Valley or Japan but instead from London and the mind of IT whizz Jill Meadows. Without the restrictions of a television production budget the story could quite easily have been replicated in Tokyo for example but clichés are avoided with the head of the company being female. In a modern world that revolves around technology, all designed to make our lives easier, this story ponders what would happen, not if technology turned against us, but if we became unable to use it.

What initially appears to be a traditional ‘ghost in the machine’ or ‘robot uprising’ storyline actually unravels to explore that far more intriguing concept. Instead of turning human technology against it's inventors, the villains of the piece erase our ability to use items which have become essential to our lives and suddenly our surroundings become a lot more terrifying. As paranoia and fear spread, it seems that the Koggnossenti can emerge unchallenged from their base in the London Underground prepared to enslave a human race made intellectually redundant.

Technophobia reunites a popular Doctor and companion combination with a refreshing Earth-based story, parodying a popular fruit-based brand and shining a light on our technology obsessed society in an enjoyable story which sets a high standard for these new adventures for the Tenth Doctor.


28 May 2016

Geekinomicon, Oklahoma’s largest Comic Con, hosted at Oklahoma City’s Cox Convention Center on September 2­4th this year, is the official 20th anniversary celebration of “Doctor Who: The Movie”. Paul McGann, Sylvester McCoy, Daphne Ashbrook, Eric Roberts, Yee Jee Tso, Jeremy Radick, and Eliza Roberts will be attending the convention and providing photo­ops, autographs, and live screenings of the movie with cast commentary.

Yee Jee Tso is publishing a special edition of his book, “Time and Spaces: A Photo Journal of Doctor Who Filming”. All VIP tickets will receive this special limited edition Geekinomicon copy as well.

This is the first time since the movie was made that the cast has been reunited. Geekinomicon will also have the original screen used Tardis console as part of the VIP Photo­op.

Admission and VIP tickets can be purchased at: http://bit.ly/1S59kR3

In honor of our 20th anniversary launch we have a special 20% discount code on admission: DW20th (Expires May 30th, 2016).

+  Website:  www.geekinomicon.com

+  Facebook:  facebook.com/geekinomicon

+  Twitter:  @Geekinomicon

[Source: Geekinomicon]

25 May 2016

Doctor Who Magazine celebrates its 500th issue with two exclusive interviews with Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi, as well as a specially commissioned front cover where Peter recreates the first ever cover of the magazine. The 500th issue features Peter adopting the same pose alongside a Dalek that fourth Doctor Tom Baker did for the very first edition on 11th October 1979. Doctor Who Magazine hits newsstands on Thursday 26th May.

Commenting on the magazine’s success, Peter says:

“The magazine was enormously helpful to me. When I started playing the Doctor I was able to get piles of them and dive in. I went out and bought lots of Doctor Who Magazines, because I deliberately wanted to steep myself in Doctor Who and connect – reconnect – to it in a very kind of visceral way, to the affection and the heartbeat of it.’

And in what he calls is his last ever interview with the magazine, Tom Baker adds:

“500 is a big milestone, and I’m sure you’re right to want to mark it BIG. Your magazine has been extremely good to me, and has helped to create a warm and faithful fanbase for the programme. I am still signing first editions. After all these years." 

The highly collectable 500th issue comes packaged in a striking card envelope and is a bumper 116 pages long, priced £9.99. Other highlights include an interview with Doctor Who showrunner, Steven Moffat and a special treat for fans also in the form of an exclusive letter to Doctor Who Magazine readers from Pearl Mackie, who will play new companion Bill.

Also featured in the magazine is an interview with the first Doctor William Hartnell, dating from 1965 and written by an eleven year old fan.

The first issue of Doctor Who Magazine was published on 11th October 1979. It began life as a weekly publication with a cover price of just 12p, created as the perfect accompaniment for fans of the BBC One primetime show. Featuring exclusive interviews with Doctors, Companions and even some monsters, the magazine included comic strips, features, news and interviews. Among the buyers of Issue 1 were an eight-year-old David Tennant, 16-year-old Russell T Davies and 17-year-old Steven Moffat. All of them have been reading the magazine ever since. 

+  Doctor Who Magazine Issue #500 is out on Thursday 26th May, priced £9.99.
+  Check Out The DWO Guide to Doctor Who Magazine!

 

Follow @DWMTweets on Twitter!

Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!
+  Follow @DrWhoOnline on Instagram!

[Sources: BBC Worldwide]


 

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