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4/16/2005 06:56:00 pm - Reported by Shaun Lyon


April 16, 2005 • Posted By Shaun Lyon
The big news today is, of course, the David Tennant casting announcement. ITV Teletext and BBC Ceefax carried the story, it was noted briefly on BBC Breakfast News and there are articles in the morning papers. CBBC's Newsround Showbiz seems to have abandoned its behind-the-scenes reports, but Newsround did, shortly before 5pm, cover the announcement of the new Doctor, with a report read over various clips from the first couple of episodes of the series. BBC News 24 doesn't seem to have covered the announcement (being largely dominated at the moment by the collapse of Rover cars and the election campaign), and the only BBC News coverage seems to have been at about 6.10 this morning, with a brief report of the announcement during Breakfast News. Meanwhile, a six-second teaser featuring the spaceship crashing into Big Ben, has been used to trail Aliens of London since about 5.30 yesterday evening.

Lots of additional media coverage today of the Tennant casting; besides the sites noted in the news story from last night, there is coverage of the event today on the official Doctor Who siteMirror (which also mentions the salary amount), Manchester OnlineicScotlandWaveGuideYahoo! NewsMonsters and CriticsicWest Lothian,Reuters IndiaKerala NewsCult TVDarkZeroCBBC NewsicWalesReuters,DeHavillandDaily Mail,ObviousNewsSlashdot (which references us but calls us "Output Gallifrey"), and a trio of Harry Potter sites (due to Tennant being in the next film), Harry Potters PageMuggleNet andWizard City. Print editions of many newspapers without online notices include the Globe and Mail (Canada), the Newcastle Chronicle and Journal; also the Press Association news feed carries two stories about the casting.

The Who Is Doctor Who? website (a tie-in page run by the BBC's official Doctor Who website) has been updated again with content from "Aliens of London"... check it out (but beware of spoilers if you haven't seen the episode!)

The BBC have been promoting tonight's episode with a five second trailer, which is a sequence from the episode of the spacecraft approaching London and striking Big Ben. The clip is dubbed with the theme and the stark commentry "Doctor Who. Tomorrow at 7 on BBC1". The clip has been running since at least yesterday and appeared at 8pm and 9.30pm last night. "Aliens of London" was also today's BBC One Pick of the Day, complete with a graphic banner across bbc.co.uk (the official BBC website) with a scene of the ship crashing into the Thames: "There's an emotional homecoming for Rose when the TARDIS takes her and the Doctor back to London this week. Then, a UFO crash-lands in the city, destroying Big Ben and causing chaos. Will the occupants turn out to be friendly or deadly?" The Guardian says of today's episode, "Trenchant political satire this week, as the shape-shifting Slitheen invade present-day London from within... Downing Street, to be precise. Well, we always suspected our leaders came from another planet. 'I quite enjoyed being Oliver,' muses one alien of the MP whose skin he borrowed. 'He had a wife, a mistress û and a young farmer.' Whatever can he mean? Can Penelope Wilton stop the Slitheen slithering? Find out next week"

SyFyPortal's take on "The End of the World": "EcclestonÆs Doctor develops, too. Initially he swaggers like a big kid showing off his cool toys. But when things happen that are not supposed to, heÆs the man of action. His anger is unsettling when he finally corners the villain. And the writers suggest a hint of emotional vulnerability in the last Gallifreyan when the topic of his provenance arises. His fans shouldn't be upset, though. The DoctorÆs future is in safe hands."

BBC NewsVote has added a poll about who you'd prefer playing the Doctor. At press time, Eccleston is in the lead, followed by Tennant, then "someone else". "Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion" says the site.

The cover of today's "Daily Star" features Billie Piper with the headline "Billie. Who's The Sexiest Of Them All". The centre pages of the newspaper are devoted to Colin Baker's views of Billie under the title "She's Out Of This World" where, amongst other things, Colin is quoted as saying "My two assistants were great but Billie is amazing" (from his interview earlier in the week.)

Interestingly, there were a couple of "Doctor Who" references on yesterday's "Have I Got News For You...?" (BBC1) in which Paul Merton claimed that Ian Hislop was the new Doctor. Also, several "Doctor Who" references appeared on yesterday's "The Now Show" (Radio 4) including a short sketch entitled "Doctor Dentist".

The current issue of "Ultimate DVD" magazine has a "Doctor Who" cover featuring Chris, Billie and the TARDIS and has heavy "Doctor Who" content. Besides the interview (noted on the main news page) about the DVD releases, there is a five page article in which Russell T Davies and Julie Gardner discuss the new "Doctor Who" on DVD, which is complemented by a range of new series photographs; a one-page article interviews marketing manager Matthew Parkes about November's DVD boxset release of the new series DVDs; a two-page article on the monsters in the new series; and an interview with Billie Piper, in addition to classic Who material.

(Thanks to Steve Tribe, Paul Engelberg, Chuck Foster, Paul Hayes, Jamie Austin, Simon Bishop)