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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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6 February 2020

Manufacturer: Big Finish Productions

Written By: Guy Adams

RRP: £14.99 (CD) / £12.99 (Download)

Release Date: January 2020

Reviewed by: Nick Mellish for Doctor Who Online


"The Eleven has a plan. A grand plan. An appalling plan. A plan that endangers all life in the cosmos.

With Ace working for the enemy, the Doctor must rely on scheming Time Lord Cardinal Ollistra for help. The stage is set for an epic confrontation.

Because the Doctor has a plan to stop the Eleven. A grand plan. An appalling plan. A plan that endangers all life in the cosmos.

Whichever one of them wins, the Dark Universe won’t want to lose..."

WARNING: The following review contains spoilers. You have been warned!

With so many releases across so many ranges, it is semi-inevitable that at some point they will converge in one place. We’ve seen that recently with the Who/Cicero crossover play Tartarus, and now we are mixing the streams again with the Eighth Doctor box sets and the main range in this, Dark Universe. In some ways this was an inevitable release, what with the Seventh Doctor having kicked off Doom Coalition in the first place. We know he captured the Eleven, so I suppose temptation would always be succumb to in the end and we’d get the story of how it unfolded.

That is not surprising. What arguably is surprising is that Dark Universe very much relies upon you knowing who the Eleven is and how he operates. You get a brief hand-waving exercise of “this is his basic modus-operandi” but not much beyond that, and an entire cliffhanger resolution being wrapped up in knowing that one of his incarnations was nice is the icing on the cake. Unfamiliar with the Eleven? You’ll get the vague gist of things but hand on heart(s) I am not sure this is necessarily the best introduction, which is odd as this is, chronologically speaking, the Eleven’s debut appearance in the world of all things Who. Ah well: the show loves a paradox, doesn’t it?

Speaking of confusing states of affair, Dark Universe sees an older Ace reunited with the Seventh Doctor, still up to his old tricks, years after they parted. If you thought tracking the chronology of the Eleven is hard, good luck trying with Ace. I have listened to every single Big Finish release featuring her (not an exaggeration), and I’m largely lost nowadays. Can you imagine how a casual listener must feel? The Big Finish main range is not a welcoming one.

Back to the play in hand, though. With any prequel, you run the risk of things feeling redundant. We know how everything ends, so just how exciting can the road there really be? A fair bit, it turns out. Guy Adams is definitely having fun here. We expect some of the cliffhangers before they come, but that’s part of the game. A weapon is discovered, it’ll have devastating effects… and the Doctor wants the enemy to have it! He doesn’t think they will use it… but they do! And so on. The game here is to play along, anticipate, hear it happen with a knowing wink, and smile as the episode ends. It’s a playful approach that benefits the script enormously.

I felt that perhaps things ran their course a little by the end, mind. The final episode carries on with what you expect: the Doctor looking at the bigger picture as if playing Chess; Ace calling him on it and the two of them being at loggerheads. It’s something we’ve seen many times before but unlike the cliffhangers and playfulness earlier, it’s so era-specific, instead of the wider tropes from earlier, that it feels like a cliché and little else. Perhaps it will lead to more meaningful things in the range down the line, but that’s hard to say.

As it stands, there is a lot to recommend with Dark Universe. Does it work as an introduction to the Eleven for new listeners? I’m not sure it does. But the play is fun with some nicely imaginative parts, and whatever else, Dark Universe is a declaration of intent.

The main range is increasingly wanting to acknowledge the other ranges Big Finish has to offer. We’ve had these crossovers before, but I’m not sure it’s felt as apparent then as it does right now. (New Series) UNIT dipping its toes into the Lady Christina box set is one thing, but (New Series) UNIT dipping its toes into the main range would be something else entirely. Right now, it feels plausible. Case in point, we’ve Churchill making an appearance soon: a New Series character, yes, but one who has also had two box sets of his own, and I’m sure the play will be sure to remind us of this.

What to make of this approach? It’s probably a smart move on Big Finish’s part, reminding us of just how much there is out there, but as with Ace and her timeline jumping, it’s arguably also symbolic of how intimidating Big Finish can appear from the outside looking in. Maybe having Eleven personalities at once to digest it all would help? Time will tell, it always does… ah, maybe there’s something in era-specific clichés after all.


+ Dark Universe is OUT NOW, priced £14.99 (CD) / £12.99 (Download).

+ ORDER this title on Amazon!


6 February 2020

Further to Tuesday's news about the Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 12 blu-ray box-set re-appearing for preorder on Amazon, DWO have a couple more 2020 related DVD / Blu-ray updates.

In regards to The Collection - Season 12, the ability to preorder was removed again on Wednesday, after just a few hours, but as of this morning, it's now back up again on Amazon for £39.18. You can also order at HMV, Zavvi and Zoom.

We reached out to BBC Studios for confirmation on the replacement discs, who stated the corrected discs (discs 3 & 5) will be included.

A release date has now also been confirmed for The Faceless Ones, which will be released on 9th March 2020. You can preorder this title for £14.99 (DVD) / £18.99 (Blu-ray) on Amazon.

The 2020 DVD & Blu-ray release schedule now looks like this:

27th January - Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 26
10th February - Doctor Who: The Complete Fifth Series (Steelbook)
2nd March - Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 12 (re-release)
9th March - Doctor Who: The Faceless Ones
16th March - Doctor Who: The Complete Twelfth Series
20th April - Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 14
Date TBA - Doctor Who: Fury From The Deep 

Further titles are expected in 2020 and DWO will keep you posted as soon as we get more information.

+  The Collection - Season 12 is re-released on 2nd March, priced £56.16.
+  PREORDER this title from Amazon.co.uk.
+  See all the 2020 released in the DWO Release Guide.
+  Discuss all the Doctor Who DVD releases in the DWO Forums.

[Sources: BBC StudiosAmazon.co.uk]

5 February 2020

After working on Doctor Who for a grand total of 15 years, it is our sad duty to report that last week's episode (12.6: Praxeus) was the final contribution from prosthetics and creature design team, Millennium FX.

Going right back to Christopher Eccleston's first episode in 2005 (1.1: Rose) Millennium FX were in charge of producing the Auton masks and arms we saw on-screen. They went on to produce countless creations for the show, including: The Ood, Davros, Clockwork Droids, Weeping Angels and Judoon (to name just a few), finally ending with the praxeus virus skin-effect from last weeks episode of the same name.

At the time of writing, it is unsure as to why the team are leaving but MFX Director, Neill Gorton confirmed the news on his Instagram page:

"So sixteen years ago the first episode of Doctor Who I worked on was the Autons - an alien intelligence that inhabits plastic and brings it to life to kill people. This is my last episode and its one about a space virus that infects people through plastic and kills them. Anyway, moving on."

We at DWO are genuinely sad to hear the news; we were actually invited to visit the MFX studios by Neill and his team way back in 2007, and were blown away by the sheer amount of hard work and detail that went into each of their creations. You can read our article from the visit, here.

We would like to wish Neill and the team at Millennium FX all the best for the future, and thank them for all their hard work on Doctor Who

+ Purchase a range of MFX Doctor Who masks at MFX Warehouse.
+ Follow @Millennium_FX on Twitter

[Sources: DWO, Instagram]

4 February 2020

Amazon are now taking orders for the re-release of the popular Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 12 blu-ray box-set.

Whilst we wait for an official word from the BBC, we understand the release will be exactly the same as the 2018 release, except with the corrected, replacement discs.

The title is due to be released on 2nd March 2020, and is currently available to preorder for £39.17 from Amazon.co.uk

Season 12, Tom Baker's first as the Doctor, features five stories over 20 episodes, including The Ark in Space and Genesis of the Daleks. The Doctor is accompanied in this season by Sarah Jane Smith (Elisabeth Sladen) and Harry Sullivan (Ian Marter) and was first broadcast between December 1974 and May 1975.

The new Blu-Ray release includes existing bonus material from the original DVDs as well as the brand new features below:

TOM BAKER IN CONVERSATION
A candid new one-hour interview with the Fourth Doctor.

BEHIND THE SOFA
Classic clips from Season 12, viewed by Tom Baker, Philip Hinchcliffe, Louise Jameson, Janet Fielding, Sarah Sutton and Sadie Miller.

NEW MAKING-OF DOCUMENTARIES
For The Sontaran Experiment and Revenge Of The Cybermen.

IMMERSIVE 5.1 SURROUND SOUND MIXES
For The Ark In Space and Genesis Of The Daleks.

OPTIONAL BRAND NEW UPDATED SPECIAL EFFECTS
For Revenge Of The Cybermen.

GENESIS OF THE DALEKS - OMNIBUS MOVIE VERSION
Unseen since broadcast in 1975.

THE TOM BAKER YEARS
The 1991 VHS release, on disc for the first time.

PRODUCTION ARCHIVE MATERIAL
PDF files from the BBC Archives.

+  The Collection - Season 12 is re-released on 2nd March, priced £56.16.
+  PREORDER this title from Amazon.co.uk.
+  Discuss all the Doctor Who DVD releases in the DWO Forums.

[Source: Amazon.co.uk]

4 February 2020

TARDISMonkey's Torchwood Diary - watching Torchwood an episode a week from the start...

1.5: Small Worlds

Grab the tissues everyone, this is an emotional ride. 

 

We are greeted by the adorable character of Estelle Cole, played by Eve Pearce, as she explores the hidden and enchanted world of fairies. It's a classic opening to a Brother’s Grimm.

 

Estelle starts taking pictures on her film camera of these seemingly harmless looking creatures until she starts walking away, satisfied with her discover; however the creatures turn into evil demons ready for the kill… Cue title sequence. (I can safely say this is the first Torchwood episode that has gripped me straight from the off.) 

 

The camera pans through Torchwood until we see a sleeping and very shirtless Captain Jack, which is a shot definitely for the men, ladies and anyone in-between. We’re thrown back in time to what appears to be a nightmare with Jack seeing his army platoon on a train, dead,with flower petals in their mouths. A disturbed Captain Jack quickly leaps out of bed from the nightmare, prepared not to sleep for the rest of the night. However he finds a petal on his desk. Was this a dream?

Small Worlds offers an array of themes here, but the most interesting has to be the exploration of Captain Jack’s past. This is the first time we’ve had real hints and stories about Jack’s history, and the troubles that he’s been so good at covering up so far.

Murray Gold’s music creates a dream like world as if we’re living in a childhood fairytale, thus creating the perfect introduction to Jasmine Pierce, a primary school girl waiting for her parents who are late picking her up. In a sharp turn of events and a harsh cue from Gold’s music, a disturbing man watches her from afar. Jasmine continues to walk from school on her own, as the predatory man creeps behind her in his car, but is she alone? The camera cuts to a green eyed perspective as the man tries to grab Jasmine, until a strong wind whirls around the paedophile who gets his comeuppance as his face smashes against his car. He runs away in terror as Jasmine watches in glee and skips away. Not a way I would react if someone tried to grab me or having an unknown entity save the day. It creates a divide of are these creatures the good or the bad guys?

Torchwood really brings that grey area into the world that is so typically written as black and white. However there is justice when the paedophile man starts coughing up petals and water, as he runs through Cardiff Market wanting to be arrested by a police officer nearby. It’s a true body horror moment that makes for an uncomfortable watch. Are these creatures forcing him to repent or filling him with pure terror as they have taken guardianship of Jasmine. As Gwen quotes ‘One persons’ good, could be somebody else’s evil’.

Meanwhile, Jack and Gwen attend a talk about the legend of Fairies – hosted by none other than Estelle. Gwen, seemingly very unconvinced by the whole situation, dismisses the theme of fairies existing and questions whether Estelle’s either making it up or has a really distorted view on the world. That is until Gwen starts to notice Jack and Estelle getting very close, hinting at a past intimacy. As they turn up to Estelle’s house, Gwen notices a man who looks very similar to Captain Jack, however Jack is adamant it’s his father. It’s a great twist on the norm here, for the audience who know the picture is our Jack – it’s good to see it play the other way around, with Gwen using her detective powers to work out it’s not Jack. It’s a very similar style to ‘Columbo’ where we know who the murderer is before the story is introduced.

The main part I love about this story, is the relationship between Jack and Estelle. It feels that there is such a strong bond between them, as if they’d been married for years. It’s a nice moment to see Captain Jack as we’ve never really seen him before. It’s a softer approach to his character, exploring his long term relationships during the war. It’s a love that seems could last forever.

Elsewhere Jasmine appears to be forming a stronger bond with the fairies everyday, as her parents become increasingly more and more worried about her relationship with her friends and staying out in the garden. As we see into Jasmine’s home life, it becomes more apparent that her stepdad Roy is seemingly despondent and uninterested in poor Jasmine. Dismissing her left, right and centre, which contributes to family conflict and Jasmine’s increasing feeling of loneliness, this is the fairies time to strike everyone down.

The first attack starts off with the typical Torchwood style alien murder mystery, as the paedophile finally gets his comeuppance as he’s attacked in his empty prison cell by the Fairies, in much the same way as previously seen – he chokes to death on flower petals. However, the fairies don’t stop there.

We come to the changing of the equilibrium in one of the most emotional sides of Torchwood so far. The death of Estelle. The fairies in their chance to get their chosen one, Jasmine, will try anything to make sure the Torchwood team and especially Captain Jack, from stopping their plans. Estelle is so brutally taken away from us and it easily becomes one of the most heartbreaking deaths. I will not be afraid to admit I cried my heart out. It shows how incredible Peter J. Hammond’s writing is, to create such a bond with a character in the first 20 minutes of the show. John Barrowman equally makes it such a heart breaking moment as he holds her in his arms one last time, before kissing her on the forehead as he leaves. It creates a truly upsetting moment as Captain Jack will never be able to reveal his secret of who he actually was. (Damn you Murray Gold and your stunning music to this scene) - a scene that will be the pinnacle moment which reveals how Torchwood was such a fantastic show and pushed those boundaries like never before.

Captain Jack now has to make an impossible choice, a theme that is regularly brought up in Doctor Who. Torchwood has the same flexibility in its story telling, being able to confront the horrific demons of the past, as Jack knows the fairies need a chosen one or they’ll destroy the world. How do you make that decision when the chosen one is a child?

The final showdown between the fairies and the Torchwood team ends up in Jasmine’s garden, as her stepdad is brutally killed by the fairies shoving petals down his throat. Jasmine’s mum in complete distress, looks upon Captain Jack for the reassurance that the Doctor would show. However, unlike the Doctor, where some impossible choices are taken from him, Captain Jack faces them.

We approach the forest where it all started and a struggling Jasmine wants to join the fairies in eternal life, but in a shocking turn of events Jack lets her go. The second crying moment ensues. Jasmine’s mum watches in horror as her little girl runs away and disappears as if she never existed. This is a heartbreaking moment, in which Jasmine’s mum blames Jack for the loss of her family and is also the moment Captain Jack realises he had no choice, no matter how broken he would feel afterwards. It’s a true testament again to the relationship between Captain Jack and his team, that would so easily have created a TARDIS team to separate. (Damn you Murray Gold again and your stunning music). 

 

Small Worlds is real horror story and a great theme for a true Grimm’s Fairy Tale. The only criticism I have is the CGI of the fairies do somewhat let some of the scenes down. For me, I would have love to have seen the fairies still looking small and innocent but with razor sharp teeth, rather than a full sized, green alien style. It just creates a juxtaposition that no matter how innocent something appears, there’s something always deceptive underneath its appearance.

Captain Jack’s love for Estelle and the guilt he felt for letting Jasmine go, is one of the most powerful performances we’ve had in the series so far. (Ok Gareth David-Lloyd did give a hell of a performance is ‘Cyberwoman’). This episode has been a true testament of stunning performances from the supporting cast, as well as the main team. 


Ellie (TARDISMonkey) 

 

 

Follow @Tardis_Monkey on Twitter!
+ Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!

[Source:
DWO]

28 January 2020

It is with deepest regret that DWO announces the passing of Classic Series Doctor Who Actor, Nicholas Parsons.

Nicholas was known for the playing the role of Reverend Wainwright in the 7th Doctor adventure, The Curse Of Fenric.

His career began at the end of the Second World War, making his stage debut as Kiwi in The Hasty Heart. Nicholas then went on to have further credits in Film and TV; The Eric Barker Half-Hour, Look At It This Way, Here And Now, The Adventures Of Robin Hood, Four Feather Falls, The Ugliest Girl In Town, Benny Hill, Cluedo, The Wotwots and Good Omens are just a few from his many performances.

Nicholas was also the host of popular BBC Radio 4 panel game, Just A Minute - a show which had its first broadcast in 1967! There were some episodes where he relinquished his chair to be a panellist, but was famed for never missing an episode until 2018, where Giles Brandreth stood in for him due to illness.

On a personal note, I met Nicholas in 1998 during the Southampton leg of The Rocky Horror Stage Show. I was studying drama at college at the time, and all of our class were dressing up as characters from the show. As I knew Nicholas was in Doctor Who, I decided to dress up as him with flour in my hair and eyebrows and a cravat (much to the confusion of some of my peers) - in hindsight, this was also my first-ever cosplay!

I met him after the show (pictured-right) and he was incredibly generous with him time. A gently spoken man who looked back on his Doctor Who role with pride. He even found time to give me a few career tips and advice. Lovely man!

DWO would like to extend our sympathies to Nicholas' family and friends.

[Source: DWO]

28 January 2020

TARDISMonkey's Torchwood Diary - watching Torchwood an episode a week from the start...

1.4: Cyberwoman

Our next episode once again, is written by current Doctor Who show runner Chris Chibnall. We start with the Torchwood team playing a friendly game of basketball while a pterodactyl flies around because reasons? Its quite nice to see Gwen finally being accepted as one of the team, however there’s a figure who appears to be left standing in the shadows, Ianto.

 

Ianto has been a character whom we just assume is taking up the role of the butler. He just stays in the background, cleaning up the mess of the Torchwood team. However, this episode starts turning into a case of a whodunnit as Ianto runs off to meet a mysterious Doctor, while the team goes out for drinks.

 

We’re introduced to the secretive world of Ianto Jones, as it is discovered he has been keeping Lisa Hallett, a former employee of Torchwood One down in the basements of Torchwood Three. Although in a shocking revelation tying into the aftermath of the battle of Canary Wharf, Lisa is part Cyberman or should I say Cyberwoman! The story of Ianto doing everything he can to save the woman he loves, is a dynamic way to quickly explore his character. It’s a tragic tale of two people in love, which drives this episode forward in its themes.

 

However, what should be a very emotional scene between the reveal of Ianto and Lisa is let down slightly, in the design of the Cyberwoman. Unfortunately the design of the cyberbra and cyberknickers isn’t exactly what I had in mind when cybermen converted people. Does this mean other people get cyberboxers or cyberbriefs? It detracts from the overall seriousness of the situation, whereas I would have had more of a Frankenstein’s monster look proving no matter what you look like, there’s always someone who will love you, no matter what.

 

Ianto with the help of Dr Tanizaki, try to save Lisa by reverting part of the cyber process to help her live as a human again. In true Torchwood style, this all goes horribly wrong. Lisa’s cyber programming kicks into gear as she tries to process an unfortunate Dr Tanizaki, killing him. What creates a shocking twist is she is doing this out of love? The idea of human emotions and partial cyber conversion is a great concept, briefly explored originally in Doctor Who with Yvonne Hartman crying as a Cyberman. The Torchwood team quickly discover what Ianto has been doing all this time and try and stop his plans. Again this questions the loyalty of the team, as Ianto admits he couldn’t trust Torchwood to protect Lisa from being destroyed.

 

I know I mentioned the theme of Frankenstein’s monster earlier, but this literally happens within the ending of the episode. It created a major shock factor with Lisa trying to prove her love and not processing human emotions properly. She kills a poor pizza delivery woman and swaps her brain out to replace it with Lisa’s.

 

The finale of the story ends up with Ianto making a choice either letting Lisa live or shooting her for the murderous rampage she undertook. I feel this part should have been left to Ianto for his redemption. However this was brutally taken away by Captain Jack shooting first. It almost detracts from Ianto’s choice, as I think it would have made a greater impact if he shot her because he loved her so much but couldn’t let her carry on murdering people.

 

Overall I did prefer this episode to ‘Day One’; the conflict between the Torchwood team and Captain Jack has become a recurring theme, as well as the secrets of Jack’s past with him not being able to die, makes the team lose their trust even more. Maybe Torchwood should get a better vetting system for their staff?


Ellie (TARDISMonkey) 


 

 

Follow @Tardis_Monkey on Twitter!
+ Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!

[Source:
DWO]

21 January 2020

Toy Fair 2020 (London) is upon us; the annual event that showcases some of the merchandise coming out throughout the year. In recent years there has been a steady decline in the volume of Doctor Who related releases, and, unfortunately, this trend continues for 2020.

DWO trawled the many stands finding very little in the way of Time Lord offerings, save a few posters, puzzles and some FUNKO Pop's, we literally couldn't find anything worthy of note.

Thankfully, Character Options - makers of the official Doctor Who action figures, were able to give us a sneak peek at their 2020 range.

Whilst admittedly the range is small, we will be getting the following 5.5" action figures, currently slated for release this February:

- The 13th Doctor (with Bag & Sonic Screwdriver Accessories!)
- Graham O'Brien
- Judoon Captain
- Reconnaissance Dalek (with Dalek Mutant Accessory!)

We also saw Ryan and Yaz action figures, which we expect to be released in due course.

In addition to the above figures there will also be The Thirteenth Doctor Electronic TARDIS, featuring a loyal replica of the on-screen TARDIS with lights, sounds and opening doors. Also on show was the 13th Doctor's Sonic Screwdriver replica, although it was unclear whether this was the same one released last year or an updated model.

Having attended Toy Fair for the past 10 years, it was quite disheartening to see the limited number of Doctor Who related licenses. One can only hope this will change during 2020...

[Source: DWO]

21 January 2020

TARDISMonkey's Torchwood Diary - watching Torchwood an episode a week from the start...

1.3: Ghost Machine

We encounter the Torchwood team in an epic chase through Cardiff, but chasing who?

 

Gwen nearly catching the suspect through Cardiff market (where they make very nice Welsh Cakes by the way) unfortunately only grabs his coat as he runs off. Gwen thinking she failed, repeatedly apologises, while a happy Tosh shouts in her ear she’s got it. But what has Gwen discovered?

 

The opening sequence creates a fantastic juxtaposition. After an adrenaline filled chase, Gwen finds a unique piece of alien tech - changing the pace of the story entirely. Pressing its button, Gwen is unknowingly transported to, we assume, WW II. We see a young boy leaving the train station wearing a name tag, looking lost and calling for help. However in the same instance, Gwen is thrown back into the present… Looking around shocked, she utters “I’ve seen a ghost.”

 

This is the first episode which has grabbed my attention straight from the off. This episode starts to focus around Owen, which again seems to show the themes of the series that everyone has a story dedicated to them. Gwen and Owen seek out who the boy from Gwen's apparition is. They later discover via a phonebook, (which a sarcastic Owen holds in his hands), it's a Mr Tom Erasmus Flanagan. They visit the now elderly Tom and realise the alien technology was showing them a real person's past, not a fictional vision.

 

The stand out line for this episode has to be when they are trying to track down the original suspect Bernie Harris, who stole the alien tech: 'Splot' 'Splot?' 'I believe estate agents call it Splough…’. 

 

Its the brilliant comedic element that Torchwood is perfect for. The down to Earth part when they use their detective skills to find him, establishes the normal everyday aspect of working in Torchwood. This is a complete contrast to their other counterpart flying around the universe in a TARDIS.

 

As the Torchwood team have no luck ‘catching them killers then’ (Hot Fuzz reference for anyone there), Owen quickly stops in his tracks as they walk under a bridge and the Quantum Transducer activates. The whole world seems quieter and colder. Unknown to Owen, he has been transported back to the 1960's, where he unwillingly watches the rape and murder of Lizzie Lewis, coldly carried out by Ed Morgan. Owen can't move or bring himself to take action. It really does become an uncomfortable moment to watch, leaving Owen in tears as the Quantum Transducer brings him back to the present. This harrowing scene becomes the key driving force for Owen to get justice for Lizzie.

 

Posing as a Police Officer, Owen tracks down Ed Morgan to his house, which leads to an intense battle of wits. Owen describing the incident to Ed in such detail, makes us as the audience feel as insecure as Ed. The heart beat sound and the close up shots, creates the sense of panic, claustrophobia and guilt, as he’s finally been found out. It’s a fantastic scene between the characters, to which both Burn Gorman and Gareth Thomas (yes Blake’s 7), make the scene teeth clenching.

 

The Torchwood team finally track down Bernie Harris, but in a intriguing plot twist, it is revealed that there are in fact TWO parts to the Quantum Transduce; one to show you the past, the other to show you the future. Bernie, afraid of the alien tech, sees his death. Having earlier blackmailed Ed Morgan he becomes afraid of what's to come. Gwen on the other hand touches the future side of the QT, and sees herself with blood on her hands - but who's? All this builds up to be a true murder mystery tale with a side of time travel, which is what Torchwood is perfect at playing.

 

We have reached the final confrontation. Ed Morgan is about to be held to account by Owen Harper. Morgan has the knife, as previously seen in Gwen's future vision - he is ready to kill anyone before his terrible murderous secret out. It's another fantastic show of Gareth Thomas's acting as he builds up the intensity as the situation escalates. The agoraphobia is making him panic and not think rationally or logically. This is on the edge of the seat viewing. Captain Jack quickly pounces on him, while Owen takes the knife. Owen almost takes on the role of vigilante in this episode, taking justice into his own hands and fighting for the late Lizzie Lewis. Owen holds the knife to Ed's face - can he do it? He quickly realises that actually, he is the better man, and doesn't act. Sound familiar? Unfortunately this is where the ending slightly lets it down. Ed runs towards Gwen to hug her for helping him, to ultimately stab himself. Why was Gwen holding the knife pointed outwards so that someone could get stabbed? I feel the resolution is a slight let down, as it would have been nice to see Ed finally show redemption for his actions. However the final scene of Captain Jack easing the pain of Gwen accidentally killing Ed is really sympathetic and full of wonder, straight out of Tomb of the Cybermen style with the Doctor and Victoria.

 

Helen Raynor has created a diverse, atmospheric and witty script. Overall I think this has been the strongest episode so far next to ‘Everything Changes'.


Ellie (TARDISMonkey) 

 

 

Follow @Tardis_Monkey on Twitter!
+ Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!

[Source:
DWO]

17 January 2020

BBC Studios have kindly sent DWO a copy of the upcoming 'Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 26' blu-ray box-set, and we've just uploaded an unboxing video to the DWO YouTube channel, which you can view, below:



Stay tuned to DWO for our full review of the set will be online later next week.

+ Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 26 is released on 27th January 2020.
PREORDER this title from Amazon.co.uk for just £39.99 (RRP: £56.15)!

+ Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!

[Source:
DWO]

16 January 2020

Demon Records presents a double bill of unique full-cast BBC radio adventures for Jon Pertwee as the Third Doctor, based on the enduringly popular BBC TV series.

The Paradise of Death reunites the Doctor, Sarah Jane Smith and the Brigadier for an adventure that takes them from Hampstead Heath to the far-flung planet of Parrakon, where they face dangers aplenty from the hostile Freeth and Tragan.

In The Ghosts of N-Space, which features Jon Pertwee’s final performance as the Doctor, the Time Lord is in Sicily where he discovers trouble in the form of spectral monsters from another dimension. 

Presented across 6 x 180g pieces of vinyl, these two fast-paced adventures were specially written for radio by former Doctor Who producer & writer Barry Letts. Co-starring Elisabeth Sladen and Nicholas Courtney, both also feature the incidental music and Doctor Who theme arrangement of Peter Howell of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Among the supporting cast for the stories are Maurice Denham, Sandra Dickinson, Harold Innocent, Peter Miles, Richard Pearce, Harry Towb and Stephen Thorne. 

The set will be available in two different versions:


-  Limited Edition Amazon Exclusive ‘Space World’ & ‘Spectral’ Splatter vinyl,
-  Standard Edition ‘blue & yellow’ vinyl.

+  This product will be released on 28th February 2020, priced £89.99.
+  PREORDER the exclusive edition on Amazon.co.uk!
+  PREORDER the standard edition on Amazon.co.uk

[Source: BBC Studios]

15 January 2020

Maze Theory have been in touch with DWO to let us know that Doctor Who VR game 'Edge Of Time' will be released on Oculus Quest on 23rd January.

Oculus Quest is an untethered version of the popular Oculus VR headset, and was released earlier in 2019. Fans have been wanting to know when Doctor Who: Edge Of Time would be getting a Quest release, and we now have our answer! 

Speaking to DWO, Maze Theory CEO, Ian Hambleton said:

"It’s benefitted from getting a lot of the patches and feedback from the community, plus it’s got the free-roaming untethered benefits of Quest.

I’ve actually been playing in the garden with my kids in a massive 6 x 6m space to let them go in and out of the Tardis and walk around it freely."

In addition to the news, Maze Theory have also supplied us with a few teaser images (viewable in the right-hand column).

Doctor Who: Edge Of Time - game synopsis:

Be transported into the extraordinary world of Doctor Who to face a sinister force that threatens to destroy the very fabric of reality.

Join the Doctor (played by Jodie Whittaker) along with iconic and never seen before enemies to discover new horizons in this feature length, fully interactive and breathtaking VR adventure. 

Look out for DWO's review later next week!

[Source: Maze Theory]

14 January 2020

BBC Studios continues to offer Doctor Who fans the opportunity to build their own home archive on Blu-ray. Debuting on Monday 20th April is Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 14; Tom Baker's third season as The Doctor.

In 1976, Doctor Who took a dramatic new turn, electrifying audiences with changes in format, companion and appearance of the TARDIS. Season 14 saw the departure of the Doctor’s long-term companion Sarah Jane Smith, and the introduction of Leela. The season contains some of Tom Baker’s most iconic serials, with intrepid investigations in Victorian London, deadly robots in a murderous whodunit, a return to the Doctor’s homeworld, and one of the saddest goodbyes in Doctor Who history.

Producer Phillip Hinchliffe led Doctor Who through a creative high, joined by Elisabeth Sladen as Sarah Jane Smith, Louise Jameson as the Doctor’s captivating new companion Leela and guests stars Tim Pigott-Smith, Stephen Thorne, Peter Pratt, Pamela Salem, David Collings, Christopher Benjamin and Trevor Baxter.

Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 14 includes the following stories and extras, spread out over 8 discs:

THE MASQUE OF MANDRAGORA
THE HAND OF FEAR
THE DEADLY ASSASSIN
THE FACE OF EVIL
THE ROBOTS OF DEATH
THE TALONS OF WENG-CHIANG

With all episodes newly remastered from the best available sources, this Blu-ray box set also contains extensive and exclusive special features which include:

-  Immersive 5.1 surround sound - The Deadly Assassin
-  Brand new audio commentaries - Tom Baker and Matthew Sweet on selected episodes of The Face of Evil and The Talons of Weng-Chiang.
-  Behind the Sofa - New episodes with Tom Baker, Louise Jameson, Philip Hinchcliffe, plus companions Sophie Aldred and Peter Purves.
-  Our Sarah Jane – Elisabeth Sladen Tribute - A feature-length look at the life and career of Sarah Jane Smith, played by Elisabeth Sladen.
-  Whose Doctor Who Revisited - Toby Hadoke meets the producers and grown-up stars of the very first Who Documentary.
-  In Conversation - Matthew Sweet chats to producer Philip Hinchcliffe.
-  Blu-Ray trailer - Louise Jameson has trouble with her new home assistant.
-  Brand new interviews
-  Rare archive material
-  Convention footage
-  HD photo galleries
-  Scripts, costume designs, rare BBC production files and other gems from our PDF archive

+ Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 14 is released on 20th April 2020, RRP: £56.15
+ PREORDER this title from Amazon.co.uk for just £39.99!

[Source: BBC Studios]



14 January 2020

TARDISMonkey's Torchwood Diary - watching Torchwood an episode a week from the start...

1.2: Day One 

Well, well, well. If Torchwood wanted to prove that it’s more grown up theme wasn’t the family friendly Doctor Who we all know, this is the episode that proves it. 

 

This is the first Torchwood story written by current Doctor Who showrunner Chris Chibnall. The whole theme of ‘Day One’ circulates around themes of sex, which for the Doctor Who Universe was a bold move to make.

 

‘Day One’ follows Gwen Cooper on her first day as part of team Torchwood. As a meteor crashes into Earth, Gwen leaves her very cute date with Rhys to join the gang where during some banter, Gwen quite literally throws a spanner (accidentally) in the works. It lands in the meteor letting out a purple gas cloud, which heads towards a very upset Carys Fletcher on the phone telling her boyfriend to die. This is when it all gets a bit weird.

 

The extra-terrestrial sex gas turns an unexpected Carys Fletcher into a killer by absorbing climatic energy. A sentence I thought I would never write… 

 

The episode really explores the themes of sexuality with Gwen kissing her first woman, Owen being a bit of a lad after recording both Carys and Gwen kissing and then being caught out himself by getting locked away without any clothes on. How about Tosh looking away from Owen without any clothes on, is she shy about her sexuality? The Torchwood team also question Captain Jack’s sexuality and his ties with the past again, cementing the overall story arc. It’s the start exploring the LGBTQ+ themes that will be revealed in full later on in the series.

 

What makes the episode very tongue in cheek but realistic, is the fact the cast play it seriously. You can tell that Carys Fletcher has a conflict in herself for control and the distress its causing to her when then alien kills people. Gwen faces the situation by using her police training to tell Captain Jack, eating a Chinese meal or Owen filming them kissing in the cell is not the way they should be handling any situation with a distressed person. The conflict makes a noble stance of their moral grounds, until they realise they’re both on the same level of respect, when Jack reveals he’s been analysing Carys Fletcher to get her the best help.

 

The scene in which Carys steals The Doctor’s hand and Captain Jack being incredibly protective of it, just shows the incredible bond both him and The Doctor have. This is very apparent when the jar is smashed and Jack cradles the hand as if he’s holding the hand of a loved one. It's provides a heartwarming and upsetting scenario and also reveals why Captain Jack is apart of Torchwood.

 

‘Day One’ has a dignified and emotional resolution with the alien dying, with a weirdly poignant quote ‘Travelling half way across the universe for the greatest sex… But still end up dying alone’. It again explores the overall arc of who is Captain Jack and what has happened in the past for him to think this way.

 

Even though this isn’t my favourite episode out of the series, I can understand the shock factor ‘Day One’ brings and its take on being different with its sexual themes Doctor Who hasn’t been able to do before. This is what Torchwood is all about.


Ellie (TARDISMonkey) 

 

 

Follow @Tardis_Monkey on Twitter!
+ Follow @DrWhoOnline on Twitter!

[Source:
DWO]

9 January 2020

Doctor Who Magazine have sent DWO the cover and details for Issue 547 of DWM.

OUT OF THE TARDIS WITH BRADLEY WALSH! 

The latest issue of Doctor Who Magazine also includes:

•  The second part of an exclusive, in-depth interview with showrunner Chris Chibnall.
•  Interviews with the new writers of Series 12.
•  Exclusive previews of the next four episodes.
•  The untold story of Denis Alan Print, the Doctor Who merchandise company co-owned by Tom Baker.
•  Doctor Who’s top ten Master reveals.
•  Behind the scenes at the OFFSTAGE Theatre Group, whose Doctor Who plays and comedy sketches were popular at conventions from 2003 to 2013.
•  The Fact of Fiction begins an epic exploration of The Daleks’ Master Plan.
•  Part Five of Mistress of Chaos, a new comic-strip adventure featuring the Thirteenth Doctor and her friends.
•  The answers to DWM’s Christmas Quiz.
•  Reviews of the Season 26 Blu-ray box set and the new vinyl edition of The Web Planet.
•  Big Finish previews and reviews, news, prize-winning competitions, The Blogs of Doom and much more!

DWM 547 is also available as a strictly limited Deluxe Edition, exclusive to WH Smith and store.panini.co.uk priced £9.99.

In addition to the latest issue of DWM, the Deluxe Edition includes:

•  An exclusive 76-minute music CD, featuring 22 classic and rare tracks from 1963 to 1989.
•  A 32-page supplement, comprising classic comic-strip stories featuring the Master.
•  A giant double-sided poster.
•  A Series 12 art card.
•  Three Big Finish audio dramas to download.  
•  Big Finish stickers.

+  Doctor Who Magazine Issue #547 is Out Now, priced £5.99 (regular) / £9.99 (deluxe).
+  SUBSCRIBE to Doctor Who Magazine, digitally from just £2.69 a month!
+  Check Out The DWO Guide to Doctor Who Magazine!

[Source: Doctor Who Magazine]

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