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.

E-Mail NewsE-Mail Reviews
19 October 2015

Manufacturer: Warner Bros. Games & LEGO

RRP: From £89.99

Release Date: 29th September 2015

Reviewed by: Doctor Who Online

Review Posted: 19th October 2015

Now and again, a video game comes along that refreshes, rejuvenates and revolutionises the gaming industry. Super Mario Bros, The Legend Of Zelda, Doom, Goldeneye & Call Of Duty are just some of those who have done just that. In September of this year, Warner Bros. Games and LEGO released LEGO Dimensions; an interactive adventure and freeplay game that masterfully combines real world play with the digital gaming world. Such is the success of the mastery, LEGO Dimensions not only carves itself deeply into the annals of video game history, but it opens up whole new worlds of possibilities for the industry.

The basic premise of the game is that Lord Vortech (the big bad) plans to dominate the LEGO multiverse by using the foundational elements. He uses vortexes to open rifts between worlds, and using some of the baddies from the respective worlds to do his bidding (i.e; 'The Joker', 'Saruman', 'The Cybermen' e.t.c.). Through the various levels, players have to collect the 5 keystones which, in turn, unlock special modes in gameplay [Scale, Chroma, Elemental, Shift & Locate].

There are 14 levels in total for the story mode, with 14 worlds in freeplay mode, which you can access via any of the level and team packs. As a default, because you already get 'Batman' (and his Batmobile), 'Wyldstyle' and 'Gandalf' minifigures with the Starter Pack, DC Comics, The LEGO Movie and The Lord Of The Rings portals are all unlocked and playable. The portals are fully explorable worlds connected to the relevant franchises, full of mini tasks and missions, and accompanied by a host of familiar characters and features. Each world is accompanied with stunning visuals and music to immerse you further in the environment.

Current portal worlds are: DC Comics, The Lord Of The Rings, The LEGO Movie, The Wizard Of Oz, The Simpsons, Ninjago, Doctor Who, Back To The Future, Portal 2, Ghostbusters, Midway Arcade, Scooby-Doo!, Jurassic World & Legends Of Chima.

Another huge appeal, (and where Warner Bros. Games & LEGO will no doubt see the pound / dollar signs), is the ability to purchase additional level, team and fun packs - each containing characters, vehicles and objects that unlock various elements within the game. For example 'Benny' from The LEGO Movie comes with a spaceship that allows you to fly around the levels and worlds, 'Scooby Doo' can dig in designated spots, and 'Gollum' can swim underwater. Level and Team packs retail at £29.99 each and Fun packs retail at £14.99. Arguably, it's a game that could end up costing you quite a bit, if you're a completist, but fortunately, in most cases, there is normally more than just 1 character that can unlock or perform a certain task. For example 'Gollum' isn't the only character that can swim - 'Aquaman', 'Slimer' and 'Superman' are just a few of the characters and vehicles that can also unlock the swimming ability. Also, £29.99 or £14.99 here and there for a Birthday or Christmas present can quickly unlock the majority of the portals you want to explore.

Gameplay itself is incredibly fun and immersive, and anyone who has played the LEGO Harry Potter, Star Wars or The Lord Of The Rings game, will feel right at home, here. The great thing is how simple it is to play; you need very little previous experience, as you can movie around in unlock things and upgrade vehicles. Switching between characters is easy, too; you can seamlessly change from Gandalf to Wyldstyle (or whoever you prefer) simply by pressing 'X'. This makes solving tasks much faster, as you can simply switch to the character that has the required skill set.

Particularly of interest to our followers, will be the Doctor Who level and portal world. During the seventh level of the game, as the 3 main characters travel through the portal's vortex, a familiar wheezing, groaning sound cranks up as The 12th Doctor emerges from the TARDIS doors mid-flight. It was fantastic to hear Peter Capaldi has voiced the linking segments, and seeing them in all their LEGOfication, was amazing - not to mention a long time coming! As you play out the level you are thrown into the cyber headquarters where you have to solve various tasks, and chase a detached cyber head through dark corridors, a graveyard filled with Weeping Angels, and onto a showdown with the Dalek Emperor himself. In some ways, it's the Doctor Who game we've always wanted, and throw in Murray Gold's score and the voice talents of Nicholas Briggs as The Cybermen and The Daleks, and you have a real winner!

As for the Doctor Who portal world, you won't actually be able to access this until the 6th November with the release of the Level Pack, which includes 'The 12th Doctor', 'The TARDIS' and 'K-9'. The pack also comes with a bonus Doctor Who level which you will have to play to unlock the build instructions for 'The TARDIS' & 'K-9'. On 22nd January 2016, the Doctor Who Fun Pack will be released, which includes as 'Cyberman' and a 'Dalek'. DWO will be reviewing each of these packs as and when they are released.

The real star of the game is the LEGO Toy Pad - a base plate comprised of 3 segments; 2 of which each hold up to 3 characters / vehicles / objects, and a central segment which holds just 1. Behind the main play areas of the Toy Pad is the main portal, which you build at the very start of the game. There are 5 clips, which, after completing various levels, allow you to place the 5 keystones. The Toy Pad is centric to your gameplay as it interacts with the action on screen, changing colours, and requiring you to swap characters around to complete tasks and unlock things. For parents worrying that all their kids do is sit in front of a computer, fear not, your child (or self) will be getting up quite regularly if they (or you) want to progress in the game :)

To say we were impressed with LEGO Dimensions would be a huge understatement. Not only has it delivered a thoroughly entertaining game to play either by yourself or with another family member or friend, but it has reignited a love for video games that we lost quite some time ago.

 


Watch DWO's Product Spotlight video for LEGO Dimensions in the player, below:


Watch the official trailer for Doctor Who LEGO Dimensions in the player, below:

+  Buy LEGO Dimensions now from just £89.99 at the LEGO Shop!
+  Buy
Gaming Console and games from our friends over at Grainger Games!

[Sources: DWOLEGO Dimensions; Warner Bros.]

<mce:script

15 October 2015

DWO’s Spoiler-Free Preview of Episode 9.5: The Girl Who Died:

For the first time since Doctor Who’s return to TV in 2005, the opening four episodes have given us two consecutive two-parters. But Steven Moffat implied that this year it wouldn’t be entirely clear what constitutes a ‘two part story’, and it seems that in making such a statement, he was talking about this week’s episode The Girl Who Died and next week’s, The Woman Who Lived. The titles seem to link up in the same way that the couple we’ve had so far this year did, and they both share Maisie Williams as a cast member (but not necessarily as the same person), but the similarities stop there. This week’s episode is very much its own self-contained story, pitting the Doctor against vikings again for the first time on television in half a century.

Every week we spend our time in these previews praising the likes of Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman, so you can simply take it as read that the pair shine again in this episode. The Doctor and Clara continue to share a relationship matched only by the likes of Baker and Sladen, or McCoy and Aldred. Instead, we want to shine some light on another key component to the programme; series’ composer Murray Gold. Gold has provided the scores for Doctor Who since its revival, and seems to come alive especially in this episode, with a fantastic score that really stands out among his best.

It certainly helps to compliment the work of director Ed Bazzalgette, making his debut on the programme with this episode. As you'd expect by now, the historical locations look beautiful and manage to carry their own distinct flavour within the series - we’re as different in style and tone this week compared to last as you can imagine, and it works in the story’s favour. After a couple of episodes tamely trapped in tight claustrophobic corridors and gloomy overcast Scottish villages, we’re now somewhere bright and colourful and open.

The script helps to ring the changes, too, injecting even more humour into proceedings. The Twelfth Doctor continues to develop a fine streak in comedy, and watching him try to overcome all his hesitations about helping this village in a war against the universe manages to walk the line between the deep-rooted caring that even this coldest of incarnations has while also being laugh-out-loud funny in places.

And as if that wasn’t enough, there’s even some answers to a question that’s been plaguing fans for a couple of years, now…

Five Things to Look Out For:

1) “I’m not the police. That’s just what it says on the box.
2) When leaving the Spider Mines, make sure you’ve not picked up any ‘hitch-hikers’…
3) “Pick a direction. Fly like a bird.
4) The Doctor can still speak ‘Baby’.
5) “I know where I got this ____, and I know what it’s for!

[Sources: DWOWill Brooks]

10 October 2015

Friend of DWO and Doctor Who fan / designer, Jason Charles Onion, has made available a brand new, exclusive script extract and print set from ‘An Unearthly Child’.

There are ten prints, six are A5 size page extracts from the scripts and one is a promotional piece of A5 size artwork, one of these has been signed by the 6th Doctor Who himself - Colin Baker. The other three are A4 concept clock artwork prints designed by Jason Charles Onion in 1997 for the then BBC Enterprises and are signed and numbered to a limited run.

These are from Anthony Coburn's first drafts from the genesis of the show from 1963 of 'An Unearthly Child' They were discovered in 2013 in 'Herne Bay' in the lead up to the 50th Anniversary. Further information here - https://vimeo.com/132858357

Fans can order them directly from Jason’s eBay page, here, for just £29.99, and for a limited time, postage and packaging is FREE!

[Source: Jason Charles Onion]

9 October 2015

DWO’s Spoiler-free preview of Episode 9.4: Before The Flood:

What a cliffhanger to leave us on! The Doctor trapped in the Dalek city with both his friends exterminated is one thing, but heading back in time and then appearing in the present as a ghost... That's something else.

'Before the Flood' acts as a nice counterpoint to last week's episode, wisely moving from the tight, claustrophobic confines of the underwater base and instead shifts part of the action to the village outside during the 1980s. There's something fun about watching all the pieces from last week's episode fall into place, and it's a tale perfectly suited to Doctor Who. There's moments reminiscent of 'Father's Day', or 'Harry Potter', as the Doctor and his makeshift TARDIS crew work to put everything in place and attempt to save the future.

Such a set-up also gives us the perfect example of how 'time can be rewritten', with events in the past directly taking an impact on the future, meaning that neither time zone is ever safe for long. Even in a lovely desolate location, you can still feel the creep of the oncoming threat - just as tense as last week in its own way.

As usual, you can take it as read that Peter Capaldi shines through this episode, especially in an opening scene reminiscent of last year's Listen, in which we're given a glimpse into the way the Doctor thinks, and an even clearer window into what it's like to be a companion aboard the TARDIS. It's perhaps the crowning glory of a brilliant script by Toby Whithouse, with every line of this scene in particular crafted to sound just right coming from Capaldi's mouth. It also gives the Twelfth Doctor the chance to do something that none of the previous incarnations have done... Here at Doctor Who Online, we're not ashamed to say that we've worn out our preview tape by watching these opening few minutes over and over.

The two-parter format which is prevalent this season really shows its strength across this story, with much more time given over to building the individual guest characters. Splitting them apart in this episode only serves to shine the spotlight on each character in turn. While those traveling alongside the Doctor are reduced to being stand in companions (though still given the chance to show their skills and offer their advice), it's really in pairing Sophie Stone's Cass and Zaqi Ismail's Lunn with Clara that we find the real meat. Watching Clara's transformation into someone who understands the way the Doctor operates and isn't afraid to do the same has been a key point since last series, and this episode really backs Clara to the wall. The Doctor sometimes has to be cruel to be kind, as it were, but the question remains; does Clara have what it takes to be the Doctor, once he's been turned into a murderous ghost?

 

Five things to look out for:

1) 'There's this man who has a time machine. Up and down history he goes, zip zip zip zip zip...'
2) Beethoven is a bit intense. And he loves an arm wrestle.
3) Who is the 'Minister of War'?
4) 'Here. Now. This is where your story ends.'
5) A new theme tune!

[Sources: DWO, Will Brooks]

9 October 2015

Manufacturer: LEGO

RRP: £49.99

Release Date: 1st December 2015

Reviewed by: Doctor Who Online

Review Posted: 9th October 2015

For years we have been campaigning (and pleading) to LEGO to make some Doctor Who sets. The greatest toy company in the world, coupled with one of the most-popular Science Fiction TV series in the world - it's a no-brainer! When we found out that Andrew Clark's Doctor Who set had achieved the 10,000+ votes needed on the LEGO Ideas site, we were keeping our fingers crossed that it would be picked for production. Thankfully it was, and what a set it is!

We were lucky enough to be sent one of the very first sets to review from LEGO, and when the box arrived, it was smaller than we expected. Without wanting to throw in a well-known Doctor Who phrase, however, the set literally is bigger on the inside. There are only 623 pieces, but due to the fact they are smaller in size, and the fact there are lots of sections to build, you get great value for money - both in time (taken to build), and for what you get with the finished build itself. 

We clocked the build time at around 2 Hours approx, and it was a thoroughly enjoyable 2 hours at that! Building the TARDIS console room from the ground up was immensely satisfying as you see the familiar set take form. The time rotor was a particular favourite section to put together, and clicking it into place will appease the bubble-wrap fans amongst you. With two main build sections - THE TARDIS exterior and the TARDIS interior - you will similarly like the way one simply connects to the other, giving the impression that The Doctor has just walked into the TARDIS from the outside.

There are some fantastic little details on the build, from the various buttons and screens that form the TARDIS console, to the back panelling of the TARDIS and the Police Box signs that adorn the top of the TARDIS exterior. The exterior can be detached and once the hinged Police Box signs are swivelled down, you can place the TARDIS roof on. You then lift up the hinges and remove the roof to open the Police Box. Inside, you get a cool effect of the interior of the doors, a plinth to stand The Doctor or Clara on, and a neat little roundel effect, either side of the hinged, pull-out sections.

As for the mini-figures, you get The 12th Doctor, The 11th Doctor, Clara, 2 x Daleks and a Weeping Angel. There's a feeling that this set is based on the events at the end of 'The Time Of The Doctor', as the 12th Doctor (complete with Sonic Screwdriver) is wearing 11's purple frock coat, Clara is also wearing the exact outfit she wore in the episode. The 11th Doctor is wearing his brown tweed suit, and comes with a Fez and Sonic Screwdriver accessories.

The Daleks are constructed a little differently to what we expected them to look like in LEGO form, but this is no bad thing. For a scaled-down version, they look fantastic, and LEGO have gone all out by creating custom art for the Dalek dome. A little bonus is that you can actually swivel the Dalek's head 360°. Finally, you also get a Weeping Angel - complete with wings! There are two faces, so, dependant on your mood you an choose between 'serene' and 'screaming'.

Tying everything together is the impressive 127-page build manual. It's full of easy-to-follow instructions, as one would expect from LEGO, but, ever so coolly, there are neat little Doctor Who facts randomly printed along the way. There is also a brief guide to the character featured in the set, as well as a short bio on Andrew Clark and his process with LEGO Ideas. There are also some short bios on LEGO Product Designer, Samuel Johnson (Paul McGann's nephew) and LEGO Graphic Designer; Adam Corbally.

We forsee this set being a huge success, and we can only hope that it will pave the wave for future LEGO Doctor Who releases. 

[With thanks to LEGO

Check out DWO's exclusive unboxing & product spotlight of the set in the video, below:


  +  Fans can PREORDER the set shortly from the LEGO Shop, priced £49.99

[Source: DWO]

6 October 2015

LEGO® Ideas have unveiled the brand new Doctor Who TARDIS set where fans can role-play the Doctor’s time-travel adventures!

Created by fan-designer Andrew Clark and selected by LEGO Ideas members, the set is based on the BBC’s popular and long-running television series about a Time Lord – The Doctor – exploring the universe in a blue police box. Due to trans-dimensional engineering, the TARDIS is bigger on the inside than the outside and this cool multifunctional set includes the console room that houses all the controls. 

Featuring an opening TARDIS, detachable interior console room, exclusive graphic details and steps, fans can regenerate the Doctor and defeat the evil Daleks or Weeping Angels with the help of his extraordinary companion Clara. Once the doors of the TARDIS are closed, prepare to launch into dimensions light years away from Gallifrey!

Measuring over 5” (14cm) high, 6” (16cm) wide and 9” (23cm) deep, the model contains 623 pieces to build an authentic replica. At £49.99 RRP, the set [#21304] includes four minifigures: The Eleventh Doctor, The Twelfth Doctor, Clara Oswald and a Weeping Angel, plus 2 Daleks and assorted accessory elements such as the Doctor’s signature Sonic Screwdriver.

Check out DWO's exclusive unboxing & product spotlight of the set in the video, below:


+  Fans can PREORDER the set shortly from the LEGO Shop, priced £49.99

[Source: BBC Worldwide]

5 October 2015

BBC DVD have sent DWO the DVD cover and details for the upcoming 2nd Doctor release of 'The Underwater Menace'.

The Underwater Menace is the fifth serial of the fourth season, which was first broadcast in four weekly parts from 14 January 1967 to 4 February 1967. The story introduces Jamie McCrimmon's (Frazer Hines) on his first journey with the Doctor as a travelling companion. This special release will contain the two re-mastered existing episodes, with the two missing episodes represented with restored audio and surviving stills, as well as over an hour of extras.

Special Features:

·  Commentary - For episode 1, Interview with actor Michael Troughton Part 2 (from Ice Warriors). For episodes 2 and 3, a commentary with actors Anneke Wills, Frazer Hines and Catherine Howe, special sounds supervisor Brian Hodgson and floor assistant Quentin Mann. For episode 4, archive material featuring Patrick Troughton, directors Julia Smith and Hugh David, and producer Innes Lloyd. Moderated and linked by Toby Hadoke.

·  A Fishy Tale (Feature, dur. 28’ 30”) – cast and crew look back on the making of the story. With actors Anneke Wills, Frazer Hines and Catherine Howe, AFM Gareth Gwelan, production assistant Berry Butler and new series writer Robert Shearman. Narrated by Peter Davison.

·  The Television Centre of the Universe – Part Two (dur. 32’ 10” ) – Yvette Fielding continues her tour of BBC Television Centre in the company of actors Peter Davison, Janet Fielding and Mark Strickson, with contributions from former colleagues along the way. With senior camera supervisor Alec Wheal, AFM Sue Hedden, former BBC producer and writer Richard Marson, exhibitions assistant Bob Richardson, production assistant Jane Ashford and videotape engineer Simon Anthony.

+  The Underwater Menace is released on 26th October, priced £20.42.
+  PREORDER The Underwater Menace DVD from BBC Shop for just £13.99!
+  Discuss all the Doctor Who DVD releases in the DWO Forums.

[Sources: BBC Shop]

5 October 2015
="" />

In December 2015, the Time War will rage and only one man can save us. John Hurt is The War Doctor!

John Hurt, the world-renowned star of film and television, is returning to the role of The War Doctor, in twelve full-cast Doctor Who audio plays by Big Finish.

The War Doctor was introduced for Doctor Who’s Fiftieth Anniversary, and played a key part in the record-breaking television special The Day of the Doctor, alongside David Tennant and Matt Smith’s Doctors. He is the secret incarnation of the Time Lord — but he has shunned the title ‘Doctor’ in order to fight in the Time War against the Daleks.

Big Finish executive producer Jason Haigh-Ellery says:

“I have been a huge fan of John since first seeing him in the repeats of I, Claudius in the 1980s and in his Oscar-nominated role as the eponymous The Elephant Man. Watching his performance in The Day of the Doctor I did find myself fantasising that some far off day we might have the chance to work with him on the audio adventures of Doctor Who and now two short years later it’s happened! John wove a fantastic character together from a great script by Steven Moffat. Now we have the chance to get to know that character more and hear John stretch in the role. We’re all in for a hell of a ride as the War Doctor engages in battle. But who are the greater threat - the Daleks or the Time Lords?”

The audio adventures of The War Doctor will be told over four box sets, each containing three linked hour-long episodes. The first box set is entitled Only The Monstrous, and is written and directed by Nicholas Briggs, whose many successes for Big Finish include the BBC Audio Award-winning masterpiece Doctor Who: Dark Eyes.

Nicholas Briggs says:

“The story of the Doctor who refuses to call himself the Doctor in order to do the unthinkable upon the ultimate battlefield — all of space and time — was irresistible to me. Such a deeply disturbing and engaging character created by the formidable talents of writer Steven Moffat and actor John Hurt. It’s such a privilege to be working on this.”

The cast of The War Doctor also includes Jacqueline Pearce, who plays Time Lord Cardinal Ollistra — an arch manipulator who is waging the Time War against the Daleks. Jacqueline’s work includes The Avengers, Callan, Doctor Who: Death Comes to Time, Moondial and Russell T Davies’ Dark Season, and she is known to many science fiction fans for her role as Servalan in the cult classic Blake’s 7.

Only The Monstrous will be released in December 2015, and will be followed in February 2016 by the second volume, Infernal Devices, which is written by John Dorney, Phil Mulryne and Matt Fitton. Volumes Three and Four are currently in pre-production.

Big Finish Producer, David Richardson says:

“What an utter privilege it is to work with such an iconic actor, playing such a brilliantly devised role. This is Doctor Who at its darkest — the era in which our hero casts aside his core values in order to try and save the galaxy in its most terrible hour. We promise bold and brilliant story-telling with gripping character drama, and epic and cinematic audio productions.”

In addition to The War Doctor, November 2017 also sees a prequel box set to the saga, Doctor Who: The Eighth Doctor — The Time War, which will follow the early stages of the Time War from the Eighth Doctor’s perspective. Paul McGann stars, alongside characters first introduced in the War Doctor box sets.

[Source: Big Finish]

2 October 2015

BBC Three today announces Class - a new 8-part, 45 minute Doctor Who spin-off from the acclaimed young adult author Patrick Ness.

Class is a YA series set in contemporary London. Incredible dangers are breaking through the walls of time and space, and with darkness coming, London is unprotected. With all the action, heart and adrenalin of the best YA fiction (Buffy, Hunger Games), this is Coal Hill School and Doctor Who like you've never seen it before.

Steven Moffat says:

“No one has documented the dark and exhilarating world of the teenager like Patrick Ness, and now we're bringing his brilliant storytelling into Doctor Who. This is growing up in modern Britain - but with monsters!”

On his first television series, writer Patrick Ness says:

"I'm astounded and thrilled to be entering the Doctor Who universe, which is as vast as time and space itself.  There's so much room there for all kinds of amazing stories, and to work with Steven Moffat and Brian Minchin to find a place to tell one of my own has been an absolute joy. I can't wait for people to meet the heroes of Class, to meet the all-new villains and aliens, to remember that the horrors of the darkest corners of existence are just about on par with having to pass your A-Levels."

Damian Kavanagh, Controller BBC Three, adds:

“We’re excited to give Patrick Ness this opportunity to work with us at BBC Three and the Doctor Who family. Patrick understands young audiences and I’m delighted he will use his incredible skills as a storyteller to delight audiences on BBC Three. BBC Three will always innovate and offer opportunities for brilliant new talent."

Polly Hill, Controller of BBC Drama Commissioning, adds:

“I am thrilled that Patrick Ness is writing his first drama series for BBC Three. The combination of Patrick and Steven Moffat is an exciting partnership that has created a brilliant Doctor Who spin-off for our BBC Three audience.”

Class is executive produced by Steven Moffatt, Patrick Ness and Brian Minchin. It was commissioned by Damian Kavanagh, Controller of BBC Three, and Polly Hill, Controller of BBC Drama Commissioning.

An 8x45 minute series is produced by BBC Cymru Wales in association with BBC Worldwide for BBC Three.

The series will film in and around Wales from Spring 2016 and be on air next year. 


Since the announcement broke, Patrick Ness has confirmed that the show will also be broadcast on BBC One:

Fan reaction appears to be generally positive, but some fans have taken to Twitter sharing their dissatisfaction at the premise. Fans took particular umbrage in the way the BBC teased the announcement before 11pm last night.

DWO Verdict:
Wait until the show airs - as Doctor Who fans, there was a time we would have grabbed anything available with both hands. Let's show Class the support it deserves and come together as fans instead of fragmenting over something we have very little information about.

For the BBC to have invested in the spin-off, shows immense trust and commitment to the brand, in a time when cuts and cancellations are at the forefront of news. It also shows trust and commitment to the spin-off itself, so, to bookend our 'verdict', lets wait until the show airs.

[Source: BBC Press Office]

29 September 2015

DWO’s Spoiler-free preview of Episode 9.3: Under The Lake:

Having kicked off Series Nine with two weeks of Dalek action, gorging us with Daleks from all eras, Davros, Missy, UNIT, Skaro, and everything else, you might wonder just how the series plans to ramp it up from there. The usual format is to start small and then build week-on-week until you're given a feast of those proportions in the series finale, enough to keep you happy during the long break between seasons. When you start the year on such a high, it's tricky to top it.

Cleverly, the team haven't tried to top all of that with this week's episode. It sees the return of that Doctor Who staple, the 'Base Under Siege', presents us with a claustrophobic setting and a finite cast, and let's us take a moment to breathe.

That's probably the best way to describe Under The Lake - after two packed weeks, with more and more elements being presented to us with every twist and turn, this story allows us to catch our breath for a moment, and really get our teeth into a proper mystery. The Doctor and Clara have arrived at an underwater base in Caithness, Scotland, 2119, where the research crew have discovered an in identified craft on the lakebed. The remote location feels all the more isolated when the crew start being picked off one by one, and return from the dead to take out their former colleagues.

In the past, Doctor Who has always taken a fairly firm line when it comes to supernatural elements such as ghosts; there's always a scientific explanation behind these things. It's rather brilliant, then, to see the Doctor so thrilled by the prospect that he might have been wrong all along, and that death really is just the start of a new adventure. Once again, Peter Capaldi simply shines in the lead role. His incarnation of the Time Lord has struck the perfect balance this year, between a man who can be jolly and frivolous, and yet being totally oblivious to the people around him, and their feelings. Jenna Coleman's Clara is, therefore, totally perfect for him - their relationship really is best summed up by paraphrasing last year's Into the Dalek; she cares so he doesn't have to. Watching them bounce off each other here is a real joy, especially when they're allowed to share some quiet moments alone, and in years to come I think they're going to be looked on as a real golden pairing, in the same way as Tom Baker and Elisabeth Sladen, or Sylvester McCoy and Sophie Aldred are now - a Doctor and Companion totally made for each other.

It's not just our regulars who shine in this episode, though. The small crew of the base all have their own distinct personalities and characteristics. Writer Toby Whithouse has clearly spent time thinking each character through, and ensuring that they're always true to form, so that even those who perhaps don't make it out of this episode feel fleshed-out. Perhaps the best example comes in the form of the base's deaf surrogate leader Cass (Sophie Stone) and her sign language interpreter Lunn (Zaqi Ismail). Though Lunn spends much of his time translating for us (and the Doctor - he doesn't do sign language in this incarnation, but he can do semaphore, if you've some flags to hand), he still has his own distinct personality which shines through.

A strong start to our second two-parter of the year, and with enough intriguing mysteries left to keep you glued next week...

 

Five things to look out for:

1) 'Keep calm, Doctor. You were like this when you met Shirley Bassey...'

2) Spaceship, or prototype weapon?'

3) The return of a Matt Smith-era alien.

4) 'It was my fault. I should have known you didn't live in Aberdeen'

5) 'Was it something she said? She does that. She once had an argument with Gandhi.'

[Sources: DWO, Will Brooks]

24 September 2015

Character Options has today unveiled details of a brand new Limited Edition Doctor Who 5.5” scale action figure. Images of the Missy figure, first in a new range of scale Doctor Who Collector Series toys, were revealed by Alasdair Dewar, Product Development Director, today via video on the Character Options’ website.

Missy, played by Michelle Gomez, is a villainous Time Lady who recently revealed herself as the Doctor’s arch enemy, the Master! Missy has been firmly established as a new fan favourite character, and as a collector’s figure, she is truly a must have.

The Missy figure will be available in two variants; a purple outfitted version with hat from the series finale episodes; and alternatively in her ‘Heaven’ outfit, hatless with black jacket and manic grin. The Missy figures each have 18 points of articulation and are highly detailed and decorated. Each figure head can also be swapped so that both heads can be incorporated with either outfit, and they both come with accessories. The bespoke UK Collector Series packs are perfect for display and for the first time are re-sealable, so that the figures can be enjoyed in or out of packaging without losing their collectability.

Only 4,000 units of each of the two figures are available in exclusive UK packaging at www.character-online.co.uk for the price of £19.99 each (excluding P&P). Delivery will be made to customers by early November.

Al Dewar states:

“Character Options has been designing, manufacturing and marketing Doctor Who toys since 2005, so as true fans of the brand we wanted to tell collectors the latest news in the most direct, if informal way, which is why I made the announcement in person not he website. Missy is the first of a potential new line of highly sought after 5.5-inch action figures so we expect interest to be high and we are all very excited to share this with fans and collectors alike.

Working with Michelle Gomez was great fun and she was the best subject we ever 3D scanned, patiently holding her facial expressions including her trademark Missy “sneer” for long periods of time. We know that many collectors have been eagerly waiting to see if Missy would at some point be included within our figure range, and at last, here she is.”

+  PREORDER the Missy in Purple outfit figure from Character Options, here
+  PREORDER the Missy in Black outfit figure from Character Optionshere!  

[Source: Character Options]

23 September 2015

Publisher: Hachette Partworks / Panini Magazines

RRP: £1.99 (Issue 1) / £6.99 (Fortnightly)

Release Date: September 2015

Reviewed by: Doctor Who Online

Review Posted: 23rd September 2015

From the team who brought you the hugely popular Doctor Who Magazine, as well as the team behind some of the most successful partworks on the market, comes a truly fantastic collectable magazine and book series called 'Doctor Who: The Complete History'.

Issue 1 hit our desk this morning, and we were immediately blown away by just how jam-packed full of information and facts the first book was. Issue 1 comes with Volume 55, which looks at five David Tennant / 10th Doctor adventures (Gridlock, Daleks In Manhattan, Evolution Of The Daleks, The Lazarus Experiment & 42).

The book series is hailed as the 'definitive guide to the making of Doctor Who' and it lives up to every letter of that tagline. There are some truly beautiful illustrations and images to be found throughout. 

In addition to the book, you get a mini pull-out magazine with Issue 1, which includes a timeline of The Doctor and a short bio on each Doctor. The magazine opens out to a gloriously huge poster of Daleks in Manhattan / Evolution Of The Daleks.

Kudos to everyone involved; particularly John Ainsworth (Editor) Lee Johnson (Story Montages) and Paul Vyse (Designer), whose combined efforts (as well as the extended team) have delivered this exciting new collection that every fan of the good Doctor should own!

 

+  SUBSCRIBE
to Doctor Who: The Complete History at:
 www.dwcompletehistory.com

19 September 2015

DWO’s Spoiler-free preview of Episode 9.2: The Witch's Familiar:

The Doctor's trapped - a prisoner of Davros in the city of the Daleks. His two best friends in all time and space - Missy and Clara - have both perished in the cold blast of exterminations, and the TARDIS has been destroyed. As first adventures of a new series go, the Doctor's not having a particularly good day, is he?

If you think that the series is going to go easy on us after that opening, though, you'd be wrong. The Witch's Familiar continues to take the knife and twist it in the Doctor ever further, playing on his grief over abandoning the child Davros out on the battlefields of Skaro, and using his compassion to engineer possibly the biggest mistake the Time Lord has ever made.

As with the first episode of this story, it's tricky to tell you very much without giving the game away. You don't want to know how the Doctor escapes Davros' clutches (though trust us when we say it is brilliant - even if Davros might struggle to see the funny side), or what lurks in the sewers beneath the Dalek City, biding time until revenge can be enacted. It's another episode which works all the better simply if you watch the doors in the city slide slowly open on each revelation.

What we can say is just how brilliant it is to have Julian Bleach back as Davros once again. Whereas The Magician's Apprentice confined him to a deathbed, this episode gives him a chance to really *live* again, and there's some lovely flashes of the mania he displayed back in Journey's End. There's very few privileges in Doctor Who greater than watching Peter Capaldi's Doctor and Davros slowly counter each other, playing a great game of chess with the Daleks, and ancient Time Lord secrets, as the pieces. It's quite easy to believe with this pair that they could have, in another life, been the very best of friends, and it's great to see them given so much screen time.

Also given a turn in the spotlight this week are the classic Daleks. Fans who were disappointed when 2012's Asylum of the Daleks left them as largely background cameos will no doubt be far happier with this - even the Special Weapons Dalek gets a chance to shout a bit! How very Dalek!

Five Things to Look Out For;

1) A character gets to pay homage to a sequence from the very first Dalek story from 1963.

2) Why did the Doctor *really* leave Gallifrey, all those centuries ago?

3) 'Where did he get the tea? I'm the Doctor. Just accept it.'

4) How does the Doctor always manage to win?

5) Mercy.

[Sources: DWO, Will Brooks]

18 September 2015

The BBC has now officially confirmed that Jenna Coleman will be leaving Doctor Who at some point during Series 9.

Below is the official line from the BBC:

"However, it’s not been revealed exactly when Clara leaves and the question many are already asking is how will she part company with the Doctor?

Jenna Coleman made her Doctor Who debut on 1 September, 2012 as Oswin Oswald in Asylum of the Daleks. She returned on Christmas Day of that year, playing Clara and remained with the Eleventh Doctor from the following episode, The Bells of Saint John, onwards. She stayed on board the TARDIS for all of Peter Capaldi’s episodes to date and after filming for the last series finished, Peter commented, ‘Jenna has been absolutely brilliant. I think she’s wonderful in the show, and she’s my favourite companion.’

But Series 9 sees the Impossible Girl’s departure although the how, why and when are all questions we’ll have to watch the new adventures to find out…"

Earlier this week, The Mirror reported that Jenna has filmed her final scenes, and that they will be in the Christmas special.

+  
Series 9 of Doctor Who airs this Saturday at 7:40pm on BBC One

[Source: BBC Doctor Who Website]

16 September 2015

BBC News have posted a news item, stemming from an original story by The Mirror that Jenna Coleman will leave Doctor Who this Christmas.

The report, which has yet to be confirmed by the BBC, states that Coleman has quit the role after landing a major role as Queen Victoria, in a £10Million drama for ITV.

It goes on to state that Coleman has already filmed her final scenes for the as-yet Untitled 2015 Doctor Who Christmas Special. 

The news may very well be true, and the timing would certainly be the expected stepping off point for Clara, but until the BBC have confirmed it, it's important to remember these are still just rumours.

[Source: BBC News]

E-Mail NewsE-Mail Reviews
RSS Feed
News Key
News Home
General
The New Series
The Classic Series
Spinoffs
Merchandise
Site
Blog Entries
Reviews Key
Reviews Home
Books / Magazines
DVD / Blu-ray
Audio
Toys / Other
TV Episodes
Search
Advertisements
iWho - The Doctor Who App!
Super Loot