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.

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31 March 2011

AudioGO have sent DWO the cover and details for the forthcoming CD release of The Stones of Blood.

From the pen of the original script writer David Fisher, "The Stones of Blood" is set in 20th Century Dorset, where the ancient Cailleach has exerted her powers throughout the ages.

The Doctor, Romana and K9 team up with Professor Amelia Rumford and her friend Vivian Fay in their search for a powerful artefact...

This is a brand new audio novelisation of a classic Doctor Who TV adventure, which starred Tom Baker as the Doctor.

+  The Stones of Blood is released on 5th May 2011, priced £13.25.

+  Compare Prices for this product on CompareTheDalek.com!

[Source: AudioGO]

31 March 2011

BBC America have sent DWO the cover and details for the 9th August 2011, Region 1 Doctor Who DVD release of Paradise Towers.

Mel wants to go swimming so the Doctor takes her to a tower block called Paradise Towers where there is reputed to be a fantastic pool. When they arrive they discover that the place is far from being the superb leisure resort they had expected - it is run-down and dilapidated.

Special Features:

• Audio Commentary

• Horror on the High Rise

• Casting Sylvester

• Deleted and Extended Scenes 

• Continuity

• Girls! Girls! Girls! - The Eighties 

• Photo Gallery 

• PDF materials: Radio Times Listings

• Production Note Subtitles 

• Digitally remastered picture and sound quality

+  Paradise Towers is released on 9th August 2011, priced $24.98 (USA) / $26.98 (Canada).

+  Compare Prices for this product on CompareTheDalek.com.

[Source: BBC America]

30 March 2011

2|Entertain have sent DWO the cover and details for the 9th May Doctor Who DVD Box-set release of Mannequin Mania.

Spearhead from Space

The Doctor is exiled to Earth in the late 20th Century by his own people - the Time Lords. The newly regenerated Doctor finds himself in Oxley Woods alongside a shower of mysterious meteorites.

Investigating these unusual occurrences is the newly-formed United Nations Intelligence Taskfoce led by Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart. UNIT are soon called into action when people and meteorites start going missing but puzzling of all is the attempted kidnapping of a strange hospital patient - a man with two hearts, who insists that he knows the Brigadier... The new Doctor soon joins forces with his old friends, UNIT and the recently recruited Dr Liz Shaw, but time is running out.

Special Features:

•  Two Commentaries – One with actors Caroline John and Nicholas Courtney and another with producer Derrick Sherwin and script editor Terrance Dicks.

•  Down to Earth – Cast and crew look back at the making of this story and how a strike at the BBC studios inadvertently created the only classic series story to be made entirely on film. With actor Jon Pertwee, producers Derrick Sherwin and Barry Letts, script editor Terrance Dicks, costume designer Christine Rawlins and assistant script editor (and inadvertent Auton actor) Robin Squire. Narrated by Carl Kennedy.

•  Regenerations - From Black and White to Colour – ‘Spearhead from Space’ marked not only the arrival of a new Doctor but also the transition from black and white to colour. This documentary looks at the challenges faced by programme makers during this period. With actors Frazer Hines and Wendy Padbury, producer Derrick Sherwin, script editor Terrance Dicks, directors Timothy Combe, Christopher Barry and Michael Ferguson, designer Roger Cheveley and graphic designer Bernard Lodge.

•  UNIT Recruitment Film (dur. 4’ 48”) – a spoof army recruitment film put together for BBC transmission during Doctor Who’s 30th anniversary celebrations in 1993.

•  Trailers – two trailers for the 1999 BBC2 transmission of the story and for ‘Doctor Who Night’from the same year.
•  Photo Gallery - production, design and publicity photos from the story.

•  Coming Soon - a trailer for a forthcoming DVD release.

•  Radio Times Listings in Adobe PDF format.

Terror of the Autons

Earth is in terrible danger. The Master has arrived with an evil scheme to destroy humanity and silence the Doctor forever by awakening the awesome power of the Nestene - a ruthlessly aggressive alien life form. With their control over all types of plastic, they form into faceless automatons, a willing army of destruction easily controlled by the evil Time Lord himself.

Aided by the Brigadier and his enthusiastic new assistant, Jo Grant, only the Doctor can combat their evil power, but this is easier said than done when every plastic doll, phone flex, or chair can be turned against him. First, however, he must defeat the Master.

Special Features:

•  Commentary - With actors Katy Manning and Nicolas Courtney, producer Barry Letts.

•  Life on Earth – In this documentary, cast and crew look back at the making of the story and the differences in the way Doctor Who was made in the seventies compared to now. With actors Jon Pertwee, Katy Manning and Richard Franklin, producer Barry Letts, script editor Terrance Dicks and new series producer Phil Collinson.

•  The Doctor’s Moriarty– with the introduction of the Master, the Doctor now had his very own Moriarty, who would be the dark figure behind every story in season eight, and many more beyond that. This featurette discusses the enduring appeal of the character. With actor Katy Manning, producer Barry Letts, script editors Terrance Dicks and Christopher H Bidmead and writers Robert Shearman and Joe Lidster.

•  Plastic Fantastic – how did the writers of Doctor Who and other programmes take something as everyday as plastic and turn it against us? With writers Francesca Gavin, Robert Shearman and new series designer Matthew Savage.

•  Photo Gallery - production, design and publicity photos from the story.

•  Coming Soon - a trailer for a forthcoming DVD release.

•  Radio Times Listings and promotional material for Sugar Smacks and Nestle products in Adobe PDF format.

+  Mannequin Mania is released on 9th May 2011, priced £30.63.

+  Compare Prices for this product on CompareTheDalek.com.

[Source: 2|Entertain]

30 March 2011

The BBC Doctor Who website have now uploaded the full trailer for Series 6 of Doctor Who:

+  Rate / Discuss the Trailer in the DWO Forums.

[Source: BBC Doctor Who website]

29 March 2011

To herald the new series of Doctor Who, BBC Learning and Doctor Who Confidential today announced Script To Screen, an exciting competition that will give one lucky team of school children the chance to write their own Doctor Who mini-adventure starring the Eleventh Doctor, Matt Smith.

To win this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, school children aged 9 to 11 years will be encouraged to collaborate on a three-minute script that takes the resident Time Lord on a new quest travelling through space and time inside the TARDIS.

The lucky winners will travel to the BBC's studios in Cardiff where they will see their script brought to life by the Doctor Who team and cast, including Matt Smith.

Doctor Who Confidential will also be on hand to take viewers behind the scenes to show how the script gets developed from paper to television screen – from the first script meeting, a cast read-through, on-set filming... all the way to the final edit.

Saul Nassé, Controller of BBC Learning, said: "Doctor Who is loved by children across the UK, and I can think of no better programme to inspire the next generation of story tellers.

"The Script to Screen competition is a fantastic way for children to learn new writing skills, whether or not they are winners. We are delighted that the stellar cast and crew of Doctor Who are on board for this journey of learning through time and space."

Children can be as creative and imaginative as they like in order to put together a story that's filled with all the excitement and adventure of the popular BBC One sci-fi drama.

The action-packed script must feature Matt Smith and can include one of four fearsome monsters/aliens from the show: Ood, Judoon, Cyberman or Weeping Angel, as well as a brand new human character to test the wits of the Doctor.

Tailored learning resources will be available on the BBC Learning website to help guide teachers and pupils through the process.

BAFTA winner and head writer at Doctor Who, Steven Moffat, will also offer his expert advice and helpful tips on how to pull together a stand-out script with memorable characters.

Steven Moffat said: "Doctor Who made me want to write. It made me fall in love in television, script-writing and storytelling, and led me by the hand to the best job in the world. It also made me want to defend the Earth from aliens but that hasn't come up so often.

"I know the power this show has to set young imaginations alight, because I've lived it, so I'm incredibly excited to be involved in this project. Plus it's never too early to start looking for your replacement."

The winning script will be chosen by Steven Moffat, Saul Nassé and executive producers of Doctor Who, Piers Wenger and Beth Willis.

[Source: BBC Press Office]

28 March 2011

The SFX website has unveiled the title for Episode 4 of Series 6 of Doctor Who.

The episode, written by Neil Gaiman, is now confirmed as 6.4: The Doctor's Wife.

New Series Producer, Marcus Wilson, says on the episode:

“It’s an episode that involves quite a big sprawl, huge alien world locations and a new take on a familiar character, which required a lot of work. It’s a big episode, but I think it’ll be one the fans will love. It’s a real love letter to the fans.”

[Source: SFX]

28 March 2011

BBC America have sent DWO the cover and details for the 12th July 2011, Region 1 Doctor Who DVD release of The Gunfighters.

Tombstone, Arizona, 1881. The air is filled with the sounds of shooting, cussing, and toe-tapping tunes knocked out on the battered piano at the Last Chance Saloon. And then there is something less familiar: the wheezing, groaning sound of a Police Box materializing.

The Doctor and his companions aren't the only newcomers in town. The Clanton brothers have ridden in to settle a grudge with Doc Holliday, the notorious gambler, drinker, and dentist. In the Wild West, tempers are short, guns are swift, and a moment's hesitation on the draw can mean death.

Special Features:

•  Audio Commentary

•  The End of the Line

•  Tomorrow's Times

•  Photo Gallery

•  PDF materials: Radio Times Listings

•  Production Notes Subtitle Option

+  The Gunfighters is released on 12th July 2011, priced $24.98 (USA) / $26.98 (Canada).

+  Compare Prices for this product on CompareTheDalek.com.

[Source: BBC America]

28 March 2011

BBC America have sent DWO the cover and details for the 12th July 2011, Region 1 Doctor Who DVD release of The Awakening.

Little Hodcombe, 1984. The Doctor, Tegan and Turlough arrive in a small English village, looking forward to spending some time with Tegan .js" type="text/javascript"> 's grandfather. They soon discover that all is not well - Tegan's grandfather is missing and the locals are reenacting dangerous war games from 1643.

With the past mixed up with the present, can the Doctor stop the games before an evil entity hidden in the village church awakens?

Special Features:

•  Audio Commentary 

•  Return to Little Hodcombe 

•  Making the Malus 

•  Now and Then

•  Extended and deleted scene s

•  The Golden Egg Awards

•  Photo Gallery (8 mins)

•  PDF materials: Radio Times Listings

•  Production Note Subtitles 

•  Digitally remastered picture and sound quality

+  The Awakening is released on 12th July 2011, priced $14.98 (USA) / $15.98 (Canada).

+  Compare Prices for this product on CompareTheDalek.com.

[Source: BBC America]

26 March 2011

The BBC Doctor Who website have uploaded a new promotional image for Series 6 of Doctor Who.

The image shows Amy, The Doctor and Rory reflected in an Astronauts helmet - a theme that has been running throughout this week's promos on the BBC Doctor Who website.

[Source: BBC Doctor Who website]

25 March 2011

The BBC Doctor Who website have now uploaded a prequel video for 6.1: The Impossible Astronaut.

The two-minute clip features non other than President Nixon in the Oval Office, and introduces us to the new threat that The Doctor will be facing in the episodes to come.

Watch the clip below:

Stay tuned as the BBC Doctor Who site have confirmed that a new promo image will be released at 12:01am Tonight!

[Source: BBC Doctor Who website]

23 March 2011

TV features website; TV Line, have unveiled the promotional poster and airdate for Torchwood: Miracle Day.

The new series will air on Friday 8th July 2011, as previously posted on the DWO News page.

“Not a single person on Earth dies” Torchwood boss Russell T. Davies recently explained. “The old stay old. It’s great news for some people, but globally it’s an instant population boom. Earth relies on people dying. Suddenly you’re affecting everyone on the planet. That’s where the Torchwood team comes in.”

And what a team it is. Joining Captain Jack (John Barrowman) and Gwen (Eve Myles) on their international crusade — which includes an extended stopover in Los Angeles — will be ER‘s Mekhi Phfifer and All My Children‘s Alexa Havins. The season 4 ensemble also includes Bill Pullman as the Big Bad and Six Feet Under‘s Lauren Ambrose as a no-nonsense PR expert.

[Source: TV Line]

 

23 March 2011

The BBC Doctor Who website have uploaded a 15-second teaser trailer for Series 6 of Doctor Who.

The teaser, which can be seen below, features The Doctor, reflected through an astronaut's helmet as it approaches the TARDIS. Further teasers will begin airing on the BBC channels from 9pm this evening.

As well as the teaser, the BBC Doctor Who site have also uploaded a teaser trailer for the upcoming prequel to 6.1: The Impossible Astronaut (below), which can be seen on the site from 4pm on Friday:

[Source: BBC Doctor Who website]

22 March 2011

BBC Books are delighted to announce the forthcoming publication of a novelisation of the great ‘lost’ Doctor Who serial Shada.

Shada retells an adventure that never made it to the screen. Production of the planned finale to the 1979-1980 season of Doctor Who was halted part-way through due to industrial action at the BBC, and the story was never completed.

Now, drawing on drafts of the script and production notes as well as original designs and the material that was completed, prolific Doctor Who TV script writer Gareth Roberts tells this unique story, featuring Tom Baker’s Fourth Doctor, in full for the first time.

Published with the full support of the Estate of Douglas Adams and Adams' agent Ed Victor at Ed Victor Ltd, Shada will be the first ever novelisation of Douglas Adams's work on Doctor Who.   

+  Shada will be released in March 2012 as a hardback, priced £16.99.

[Source: BBC Books]

20 March 2011

Manufacturer: BBC DVD / 2|Entertain

Written By: Robert Sloman and Barry Letts

RRP: £20.42

Release Date: 18th April 2011

Reviewed By: Dale Who for Doctor Who Online

Review Posted: 20th March 2011

The epic, six part conclusion to Jon Pertwee's era of Doctor Who arrives with this double disc DVD from BBC DVD / 2|Entertain.  Disc one is the episodic version of Planet of the Spiders, complete with an optional commentary from Elisabeth Sladen, Richard Franklin and the now sadly passed away and much loved and missed Nicholas Courtney. All the info usual text is available and it's a great romp; one hundred and fifty minutes of classic science fantasy television.  The giant spiders of Metebelis Three are after the blue crystal The Doctor removed from the planet back in The Green Death, and will stop at nothing to get it back in their webby little legs...

Pertwee's swansong adventure is a long, but very entertaining affair.  It features every form of transport you can think of, and even some dashing about in the TARDIS - something or a rarity for this incarnation of the Time Lord.  The UNIT family are all together one last time, and it's a celebration of the Third Doctor, and all handled in precisely the way that had made the first colour season of Doctor Who work so well.  It's fun, exciting and worth every second.  You'll never look at those big spiders in your bathroom the same way again...

On disc two there's the extras, and something quite surprising.  There's a really nicely put together look back over Pertwee's time as the Doctor, and an equally warm feature with Barry Letts looking back on his time with Doctor Who; both of which show just how much work and love went into the show from start to finish.  Both featurettes have contributions from a variety of sources, including Jon Pertwee, Terrance Dicks, and of course Barry Letts himself.  There are also some great anecdotes from people like Mat Irvine on the spider props and the lesson of telling people what you need in good time; and from John Kane, the immensely likeable and gentle Tommy in the story, on his memories of Who and what he's done since.

Then there's the longest television trailer ever for a repeat run of Planet of the Spiders shown as one long story on a Saturday afternoon in December on BBC1 - the trailer just rambles on and on and on, with clips upon clips; it looked like the BBC had a lot of time to fill that Christmas!

And then, the surprising thing is... they included the abridged story itself!  The unrestored and very long edited together version is here too for your enjoyment, which slightly mystifies me, as there's no extra material as there was with the Battlefield release for example, but if you're a completist it's all good for the collection.

The story gets 10/10 for being suitably epic and wrapping up the UNIT years with panache and style, and the extras get 10/10 for leaving you with a warm glow that Doctor Who was genuinely loved and cared for during Pertwee's tenure as the Time Lord.

+  Compare Prices for this product on CompareTheDalek.com!

20 March 2011

Matt Smith has no plans to leave Doctor Who as he reveals he is going back to film the 2012 series.

It has previously been reported that the quirky actor was planning to leave the hit sci-fi show after the upcoming series airs on BBC this spring, however in an interview with The Daily Telegraph the star has insisted that he doesn’t want to ‘give it up anytime soon.’

“I’m going back this year,” he said. “I guess [I'll] get another one out the way, see what everyone thinks of that. I love doing it, I don’t want to give it up anytime soon, put it that way.”

Smith also confessed that he was terrified about his debut on the show last year, because he wasn’t sure fans would accept him as David Tennant’s successor.

“Before that came out, I didn’t know if people were going to hurl tomatoes at me,” he said. “I had no idea. But then I suppose every actor goes through that period of, ‘Like me! Like me!’ That’s part of being an artist, I think.”

[Sources: Unreality TV; The Daily Telegraph]

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