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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.

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

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25 May 2012

Matt Smith will carry the Olympic Torch in Cardiff on Saturday, the official Doctor Who Twitter account has confirmed.

Smith, who is currently filming the seventh series in Cardiff with new companion, played by actress, Jenna Louise-Coleman, said:

"To carry the Torch is an honour, one I thought I'd never get. I'm very excited!"

The news will come as consolation to fans who have been campaigning for David Tennant (The 10th Doctor), to be the official lighter of the Olympic Flame. An online petition has acquired over 37,000+ signatures from fans wishing for the scene from the Series Two adventure; Fear Her, in which The 10th Doctor lights the Olympic Flame, to become reality.

[Source: Official Doctor Who Twitter]

22 May 2012

Tom Baker is back at 79 Strand for the first time in over a year on Thursday May 24th, and is joined by Mark Gatiss, who as well as writing for and appearing in Doctor Who has of course written and starred in Sherlock to great acclaim. 

Ian McNeice who appeared in Doctor Who as Churchill and alongside Martin Clunes in Doc Martin will be joining Tom and Mark and it all kicks off at 10am and will last until mid afternoon. To meet the guests you will need to purchase a qualifying item from the range of Official Fletch Prints and Licensed covers that are on offer. Prices for a single signed item start at £15.

Also available will be a range of Exclusive Classic Action figure sets, the new TARDIS Teapot and a great array of Whovian memorabilia.

Don't worry if you cant get there. It's all available online from scificollector.co.uk.

[Source: SciFiCollector]

19 May 2012

Doctor Who Showrunner and Sherlock co-creator Steven Moffat is to receive a special prize at this year's BAFTA TV awards, organisers have announced.

Recognising his "outstanding creative writing contribution to television", the award will be presented on 27 May at London's Royal Festival Hall.

Previous recipients include Russell T. Davies, who preceded the 50-year-old Scot as Doctor Who's head writer.

"Blimey! A special award!" said Moffat, "I didn't even know I was ill."

The accolade follows the writing prize he received at last Sunday's BAFTA Craft Awards for A Scandal in Belgravia, the first episode of Sherlock's second series.

The Paisley native won his first Bafta in 1991 for Press Gang and was further recognised for his work on Doctor Who and Sherlock in 2008 and 2011 respectively. Moffat said he was "so thrilled" to be recognised again, "especially after two years of [working on] my two favourite shows ever".

Bafta chair Tim Corrie described him as "one of the finest exponents of his craft" and said the special award - presented in honour of Dennis Potter - was "very well deserved".

Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch is up for the best actor prize at this year's awards, which will also see his co-stars Martin Freeman and Andrew Scott go head to head in the supporting actor category.

[Source: BBC News]

18 May 2012

BBC Worldwide have sent DWO another video for the upcoming Doctor Who: The Eternity Clock video game, focusing on the monsters featured in the game, introduced by Simon Harris (Executive Producer) and Nick Dixon (Design Director).

The Eternity Clock launches on 23rd May for PS3 and 13th June for PS Vita on the PlayStation Network.

[Source: BBC Worldwide]


18 May 2012

We regularly get requests from our visitors wanting us to post some Top 10 lists, so we thought we'd get the ball rolling with one that can only be described as the stuff of legend; Steven Moffat's Hair!

DWO therefore proudly present:

10 Things Inspired by The Moff's Hair!

Thing #1 - The Portugese Water Dog

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Perhaps the biggest influence The Moff's hair has ever given was to that of the Portugese Water Dog. The breed formally known as 'Poodle' decided to take the next step in its evolutionary path, after a chance viewing of Dogtor Who Confidential way back in 2005. The breed, which no-one has ever heard of until now, is also the dog of choice in the Obama household!

Thing #2 - Purple Sprouting Broccoli

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Up until 2005 all we had was green Broccoli, sure it tastes good, but we can all agree it was lacking something - that was, until The Moff arrived on the scene. Suddenly, TV chefs everywhere, up and down the country were using a suspiciously new variety touted as the 'purple sprouting broccoli'. This lead to the Vegetable Patch craze (known as 'patching') that swept the country in 2006, where fans (believing they had sighted The Moff) arrive en-masse to allotments and vegetable patches in the hopes of a sneaky autograph. Alas, Anthony Worrall-Thompson was made the scapegoat, and blamed for stealing the regular green varieties (from Tesco), painting them a dark purple, and planting them nationwide.

Thing #3 - The Health Lottery

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2011 saw the arrival of The Health Lottery - complete with Moff-hair-wearing mascots. The principle behind the scheme was that for every £1 spent, 50 pence will go to the Hair & Make-Up department at BBC Wales to ensure the future preservation of The Moff's hair. The other 50 pence is channelled directly into the NHS to fund patients looking to recreate their icon's famous bounce. Winners who correctly matched all 5 numbers win £100,000 as well a curling iron made out of pure gold, laser signed by The Moff himself.

Thing #4 - James Nesbitt in Jekyll

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In the year of our Moff, 2007, Steven Moffat approached the BBC with a pitch for a brand new series based on the story of Jekyll and Hyde. Having seen Steven's recent Doctor Who episodes, they jumped at the chance and so casting began. James Nesbitt was the actor of choice for The Moff, but despite being offered the role flat out, Moffat was thrice turned down by the actor owing to Nesbitt wanting to emulate Moffat's hair in the role as it "just felt right". Moffat finally agreed and production was fast-tracked for the June air date.

Thing #5 - The Microphone

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In 1876, Emile Berliner invented the first Microphone, but history forgets that it was his partner Douglas McBarnet Moffat (great-grandfather of The Moff), that actually inspired the design. Carrying the same genes transported through time in what can only be described as a 'timey-wimey' transference, Douglas passed down the famous follicles, and in 2012 they are just as inspirational today as they were all those years ago.

Thing #6 - Black Tennis Balls

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You heard it here first! Back in 2008, the Duchess of Kent - a huge fan of The Moff, tried to pass a bill through to the Wimbledon Board of Governors to allow the use of Moffat-inspired Black Tennis balls. Deemed as "too radical" and "too distracting to one's eye", the bill was sadly not passed, and the image above is the last surviving reminder of what we believe could have changed the face of Tennis as we know it.

Thing #7 - Sideshow Bob from The Simpsons

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Cast your mind back to 1990 and you will remember the appearance of the villainous Sideshow Bob in The Simpsons. Matt Groening, creator of the show, was a huge fan of Moffat's work and after watching his ITV production of The Devil Wept in Leeds, he wanted to immortalise The Moff in his own show. Although the hair colour may not be the same as Moffat's (save, that time in the summer of '69 when The Moff experimented with Lemon juice), the texture of Sideshow Bob's hair was identical, and thus a popular recurring character was born.

Thing #8 - David Tennant's new look


Enlarge Image   Enlarge Image

In 2008 David Tennant took a short break from Doctor Who to perform his now famous portrayal as Hamlet for The Royal Shakespeare Company. Tennant had a few months before he had to return to the show, and wanted to try out some new hairstyles. The Moff was top of his list for inspiration and paid a whopping £5000 on achieving the new look. Unfortunately the RSC were not very happy with his new locks and ordered him to wear a beanie [pictured] until it grew out a little longer.

Thing #9 - River Song

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2008 also saw the first appearance of River Song, as played by Alex Kingston. Having being asked to return to Series Five with new Doctor, Matt Smith, Kingston had a few 'requirements' to settle before signing the contract. Having been good friends with James Nesbitt and seeing his success in Jekyll, Kingston wanted to emulate the same hairstyle (originally inspired by The Moff). Once more Moffat reluctantly agreed. Kingston was keen on knowing how Moffat achieved his legendary look, to which Moffat replied "I will tell you when we begin production on the next series, but you can not tell anyone, not a soul, not even Matt, Karen or Arthur - at least not until Episode 7."

Thing #10 - The H Bomb

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Bit of a controversial one, but it is a known fact that the first H Bomb was exploded in 1952 - just 9 years before The Moff was born. Coincidence? Well...yes, actually. But you gotta admit, the shape of the explosion is almost identical to that legendary do! 

[Source: DWO]

18 May 2012

Karen Gillan made a surprise appearance at Cannes Film Festival yesterday, sporting a breathtaking new look.

The Doctor Who star, who has just completed her final scenes on the show, was pictured wearing a etherial white mullet dress with bright neon yellow-heeled shoes. Gillan was also spotted with a new hairstyle, which DWO are dubbing 'The Edinburgh Fringe'.

Karen was in town to promote her first major film, 'Not Another Happy Ending', which you can help fund here.

After sharing the released image [pictured right] with our @DrWhoOnline Twitter followers, we were deluged with comments from fans whose breath was literally taken away by the stunner from Inverness.

[Sources: DWO; Cannes Film Festival]

17 May 2012

John Rylands Library in Manchester are hosting a Doctor Who themed family adventure sleepover this Friday!

Join in on their first ever sleepover, and take part in a Doctor Who adventure night! Dare you stay in the Library overnight?

Programme of Activities:

-  Watch two fantastic Doctor Who episodes - Silence in the Library and Forest of the Dead.
-  Make your own Journal of Impossible Things.
-  Take a torch-lit tour of the Library.
-  Solve the mystery of the missing TARDIS.
-  Sleep in the Historic Reading Room - if you can!

Come dressed up as your favourite Doctor Who character- the best costume will win a very special prize. Who will you be?!

Children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Suitable for families with children aged 8-14. A picnic area will be available in the cafe, no food or drink is allowed in the Historic Reading Room.

Booking is essential - to book a place for this event please contact the Customer Services Team on 0161 306 0555 or jrul.events@manchester.ac.uk.

+  The sleepover begins on Friday at 7:00pm-9:00am.

[Source: BBC]

16 May 2012

In Bournemouth, police are drawing up plans to reintroduce police boxes to Boscombe.

The plan is for a modern police-style contact point to be erected in the town precinct, giving police a permanent presence there. This 'hub' would give members of the public easy access to the police and, it is hoped, discourage any anti-social behaviour.

According to the Bournemouth Echo, PC Will Martindale outlined their plans, saying, “The Inspector would like to put a ‘TARDIS’ outside McDonalds [which] hopefully we will be able to staff fairly regularly.”

PC Martindale added that they hoped local businesses would apply for sponsorship of the “TARDIS”.

It is understood that designs for the “TARDIS hub” are currently being drawn up and will be presented to council planners in due course. Two council members, Cllr Jane Kelly and Cllr Phil Stanley-Watts, have already given their support to the proposals. Kelly, who is the council member for the Boscombe West district, told the Bornemouth Echo, “I think having the ‘TARDIS’ there will deter any anti-social behaviour by giving the police a permanent presence.”

Cllr Stanley-Watts, who represents Boscombe West – is a long-time advocate of the reintroduction of police boxes to British streets. He first raised the idea with Inspector Mark Kelly back in 2008, believing that updated versions could be used for reporting crime and would make the public feel safer in their community.

[Source: Digital Journal]

16 May 2012

UK newspaper, The Telegraph have just posted a recent interview with Doctor Who Actor, Christopher Eccleston, regarding his new play Antigone, and why the theatre means so much to him.

Below are a few excepts from the interview, which can be read in full here:

“I’ve neglected theatre,” he says, quiet certainty matched by emphatic vigour, his Salford accent pressing flinty personality into the words. “That’s a shame. It’s why I went to train as an actor. And for the next 20 or 30 years I’m going to do more and more of it. That’s the plan. I’m determined!”

Some of his facility for comedy was evident in the grinning eccentricity he brought to Doctor Who. But that only lasted a series. And puzzlement continues as to why he left before he had a chance to own the role.

When prodded to speak further about this, he is amicably terse. “I know what went on and the people who were involved know what went on – that’s good enough for me.”

He half-smiles, half-grimaces. “My conscience is completely clear. I’ve lived my life, particularly my working life, on the basis that I have to be able to look at myself in the mirror about the way I behave. It wasn’t a bold move, it was an entirely natural one. I’m hugely grateful to the children who to this day come up and talk to me about the show.”

+  Antigone previews at the National’s Olivier Theatre (020 7452 3000) from 23rd May.

[Source: The Telegraph]

15 May 2012

White-hot Doctor Who scriptwriter and writer/creator of hit Comedy Central sit-com Threesome, Tom MacRae and superstar actor Russell Tovey (Being Human, Sherlock) come to Kapow! to talk about the relationship between writing sci-fi drama and television comedy by asking the question: How much is creating a joke like constructing a high concept narrative?

Joining them on the panel will be stars of the sit-com Adam Garcia (Threesome, House), actress and comedy writer Lucy Brown (Primeval) and comedian Tom Allen

In addition to comic-book panels with Marvel, DC, Image and Millarworld, other events taking place include An Audience with Nick Frost, Noel Clarke Q&A with exclusive footage from Storage 24, the creative team behind Batman: Arkham City from Rocksteady Studios, British writer and director Gareth Evans talking The Raid, two of Britain’s biggest comedians as Jimmy Carr interviews Frankie Boyle live about his love of geek culture plus the much loved TV personality and comic-book writer Jonathan Ross talking America’s Got Powers.

Live interviews with huge film, TV and comic stars will be taking place all weekend at the Total Film, SFX and Comic Heroes stage plus the massive cosplay competition. 

Tickets for Kapow! are only available in advance and through the website www.kapowcomicconvention.com. Tickets for Kapow! 2011 sold out ahead of the event, so get your tickets now.

+  Kapow! takes place from 19th-20th May 2012 at the London Business Design Centre.

[Source: Kapow!]

14 May 2012

BBC Worldwide today announced the official opening date for their multi-award winning attraction the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff, the home of the BBC One show. Doors will open to the public on the 20th July with tickets going on sale at 10am on the 14th June.  Paula Al-Lach, Head of Exhibitions and Events at BBC Worldwide formally accepted the keys to the Experience’s distinctive new home in Cardiff Bay this afternoon and the first exhibits are already being moved in.

Philip Murphy, Managing Director of BBC Worldwide Live Events said:

“The Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff is going to be just minutes away from where the BBC Wales television series is made which I’m incredibly excited about. The Experience sets out to engage visitors’ imaginations from the outset immersing them in the world of Doctor Who and what better place to do this than in Cardiff the home of the show.”

The Doctor Who Experience is the first ever interactive Doctor Who exhibition that invites visitors to star in their very own Doctor Who adventure. Arriving at the venue they will step through a crack in time to become the Doctor’s companion, taking on the challenge of reuniting the Doctor with the TARDIS whilst fending off threats from some of his most fearsome foes - entering a Dalek spaceship and finding a way through a maze of Weeping Angels. Featuring a replica of the Eleventh Doctor’s TARDIS which visitors get to fly themselves the interactive walk-through culminates in a stunning 3D finale that sets the scene for fans entering the exhibition.

The exhibition presents fans with the world’s most extensive collection of original Doctor Who costumes and artefacts stretching back almost 50 years to the very first series of Doctor Who.

The content of the exhibition is updated constantly with new items from the television series to ensure it is ever changing offering fans the chance to get up close to the incredible sets, costumes and props that feature in their favourite show.  New items to be shown to the public for the first time in Cardiff include the Doctor’s cradle seen in A Good Man Goes to War; the Silence spaceship and Matt Smith’s sonic cane from Let’s Kill Hitler with many more items being kept under wraps until the doors open.

[Sources: BBC Worldwide]

26 April 2012

Matt Smith and Jessica Hynes are among the cast of British stars that will narrate a second series of poetry shorts for Disney Junior UK.

Previous Doctor Who supporting actors; Richard Briers and David Walliams will also support A Poem Is... which features poetry set to classic animations including Dumbo, Cinderella and Snow White.  

Disney UK’s general manager, Boel Ferguson, said: “Combining timeless poetry with imagery from some of Disney’s most beloved animations is a fantastic way for young children and their parents to enjoy the beauty of a poem well read.”

The 12-part series, produced in-house, is designed to introduce young children to poetry and will begin later this month.

[Source: Broadcast Now]

19 April 2012

Scientists claim to have invented their own version of the sonic screwdriver as seen in Doctor Who.

Researchers at Dundee University have created a machine which uses ultrasound to lift and rotate a rubber disc floating in a cylinder of water.

It is said to be the first time ultrasound waves have been used to turn objects rather than simply push them. The study could help make surgery using ultrasound techniques more precise, the physicists said. Surgeons use ultrasound to treat a range of conditions without having to cut open a patient. The ability to steer ultrasound waves to the precise spot where they are needed could make those treatments even more effective.

The ultrasound waves could also be used to guide a drug capsule through the body and activate it, for instance right inside a tumour. Ultrasound waves could already be made to push objects and scientists believed they could also turn them - but the Dundee University team claims to have now proved it.

They used energy from an ultrasound array to form a beam that can both carry momentum to push away an object in its path and, by using a beam shaped like a helix or vortex, cause the object to rotate.

Dr Mike MacDonald, of the Institute for Medical Science and Technology (IMSAT) at Dundee, said:

"This experiment not only confirms a fundamental physics theory but also demonstrates a new level of control over ultrasound beams which can also be applied to non-invasive ultrasound surgery, targeted drug delivery and ultrasonic manipulation of cells. The sonic screwdriver device is also part of the EU-funded nanoporation project where we are already starting to push the boundaries of what ultrasound can do in terms of targeted drug delivery and targeted cellular surgery. It is an area that has great potential for developing new surgical techniques, among other applications, something which Dundee is very much at the forefront of. Like Doctor Who's own device, our sonic screwdriver is capable of much more than just spinning things around."

The results of the sonic screwdriver experiment are published in the American Physical Society's journal Physical Review Letters.

The research also forms part of a UK-wide Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council project known as Sonotweezers, which aims to bring dexterity and flexibility to ultrasonic manipulation, allowing applications in a wide range of topics including regenerative medicine, tissue engineering, developmental biology and physics.

[Source: BBC News]

18 April 2012

Doctor Who Actress, Georgia Moffett is starring in an upcoming proudction of Joe Orton's play; What The Butler Saw.

The actress, who previously starred as The Doctor's Daughter in the 2008 episode of the same name, will be playing the role of Geraldine Barclay and will be starring alongside fellow Doctor Who actor, Tim McInnerny (Mr.Halpen in 4.3: Planet of the Ood), Samantha Bond (Ms.Wormwood in The Sarah Jane Adventures), Omid DjaliliNick Hendrix and Jason Thorpe.

Previews for the production begin from 4th May 2012, and ticket prices begin at just £15.

Show Synopsis:

When psychoanalyst Dr Prentice instructs his new secretary to undress, little does he expect to be interrupted by his wife, her blackmailing lover, a meddling government inspector and an inquisitive policeman. But hiding a naked woman is the least of his worries, as libidos run riot, identities are swapped and social decorum is buried. Madness and mayhem mock morality, and laughter reigns supreme. What the Butler Saw is the last and arguably the finest work of one of this nation's most celebrated playwrights. A gloriously witty and shockingly hilarious comedy, you'd be mad to miss it!

A trailer for the production can be viewed below:

+  Book Tickets for What The Butler Saw via the Nimax Theatres website.

[Source: Vaudeville Theatre]

18 April 2012

Doctor Who Script Editor, Author, Ex-DWM Editor and Ex-Big Finish Producer, Gary Russell will be taking part in a signing at Cardiff's Comic Guru store this Saturday.

The event, which kicks off from midday on Saturday 21st April, will be held at The Comic Guru, 13 Wood Street, St.David's House, Cardiff (Next to the Millennium Stadium).

The Comic Guru team have also recorded a 9-part video interview with Gary Russell, the first video of which can be viewed below:

+  Check Out The Comic Guru website.

[Source: Andy Frankham-Allen]

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