Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Desert Island Who

First broadcast in 1942, the popular BBC Radio 4 show Desert Island Discs has presented the favourite musical choices of hundreds of famous celebrities should they have ended up cast away. The BBC have recently made the series available in the form of a searchable archive, detailing the choices made by guests and also the actual programme to listen to in a number of cases.

In such a lengthy series it is inevitable that a many of Doctor Who's cast have featured; for example, the first Doctor himself William Hartnell was a guest on 23rd August 1965, choosing Charlie Chaplin's Spring Song as his favourite amongst other tracks like Lawd, You Made The Night Too Long by Louis Armstrong and Politsvian Dances by Alexander Borodin.

A year earlier, the third Doctor Jon Pertwee made his choices on 12th October 1964; these included two pieces by Mozart, Love is Strange by Lonnie Donegan, and his favourite being Georgia On My Mind by Ray Charles.

More recently, the 27th December 2009 featured outgoing tenth Doctor David Tennant, who cited Tim Minchin's White Wine In The Sun as his favourite, amongst items like Deacon Blue's Dignity and his favourite band The Proclaimers performing Over And Done With; this episode of the series is one of those that is also available for download.

Other notable names include 'alternative' Doctors Peter Cushing (1959) and Rowan Atkinson (1988), short-lived Master Derek Jacobi (1978), and the tenth Doctor's last fellow TARDIS traveller Bernard Cribbins (1963); explore the index for the choices of many other Doctor Who guest stars!

(with thanks to Jamie Austin)

People Roundup

David Tennant has beaten Matt Smith in a recent poll by the SyFy Channel to find the sexiest sci-fi hunk. The tenth Doctor came in at second place (16.9%), beating spin-off show Torchwood lead John Barrowman who came in third (14.2%), with Smith in tenth place (8.7%). X-Men star Hugh Jackman topped the poll (20.3%). In the sci-fi babes poll Karen Gillan beat predecessor Billie Piper, taking fourth (10.6%) and fifth (7.7%) places respectively; the top spot was taken by Buffy The Vampire Slayer actress Sarah Michelle Gellar (12.7%).

Matt Smith talks about playing the role of the Doctor: "I can never relax because I'm always pushing myself to the highest level but it's nice to enjoy the fact people have accepted me as the Doctor and enjoy the things I do. I think he's grown. I hope people see growth.
I think he should always be evolving. I don't think good actors get typecast. In 10 years' time I'll be playing very different parts than I am playing now. So there is plenty of time for me to evolve as an actor."
Also: "It's so funny, I read other scripts and I just go, 'Not as good as Doctor Who!' For me, it's a privilege to play this man. These parts don't come along that often. There was never any hesitation on my part to stay for another year. Why would I quit? I've got Steven Moffat writing scripts, but not only that - Toby Whithouse, Richard Curtis... all these great writers. And then of course, the part. I just love playing the Doctor. I've grown terribly fond of him. It's something I really enjoy." [Daily Record, 27 Aug 2011; Press Association, 28 Aug 2011]

David Tennant talks about the various roles he's taken recently in film, television and theatre: "I'm quite greedy for the variety, I think. I love the fact that I'm doing Shakespeare in the West End at the moment and then talking about vampires at the day. That's sort of what I'd always hoped I'd manage to do, to mix things up like that, to have a wide variety of work. I think it just helps you to keep being hopefully creative and it keeps challenging you. It's ideal really, if I can do a film and then a play and then a bit of telly and then a radio play and then an audio book, I love the fact that I'm in a job where I get to do all those different types of things." [Huffington Post, 18 Aug 2011]

Both David Tennant and Billie Piper are to appear in a new BBC1 drama, Love Life, a series of plays that will be based on improvisation by writer/director Dominic Savage. BBC Controller of Drama Commissioning, Ben Stephenson said: "This is a complete first in TV drama on BBC One: a serial made through improvisation. It features some of our very best acting talent working in a way we've never seen on screen from them before, using improvisation to push the boundaries of each story, to get right to the heart of the truth." The two actors will feature in different episodes of the drama. [BBC Press, 26 Aug 2011]

Billie Piper is also to play the lead in a new BBC3 show written be Lee Hupfield, Tom and Jenny, described as "a high-octane comedy pilot about a feuding couple who, despite splitting up, refuse to leave the house they've bought together". [BBC Press, 26 Aug 2011]

Karen Gillan is supporting her hometown radio station, Monster FM, which will be returning to the Inverness airwaves for a limited period during September. Gillan and Inverness Caley Thistle manager Terry Butcher will be presenting special programmes of their own favourite music on the station, which will be operated by trainee DJs from the European Social Fund-backed Radioskills project at The Moray Firth Media Trust. [Highland News, 30 Aug 2011]

John Barrowman commented on how his life style has changed over the years: "I can’t handle clubs and wild nights out like I did in my 20s. I’m lively when I perform and I always put everything into a show but when I get home I love lying down in front of the TV and relaxing. I’m not quite the party animal people imagine. I’m certainly not a big fan of nightclubs. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy a vodka and tonic after a tough day." [Wales on Sunday, 21 Aug 2011]

Sophie Aldred appears in the new comedy-drama film Thriller Theater! from the independent Untitled Creative Group based in Chicago, Illinois, USA. The film is directed by Michael S. Olson, who for the past 11 years has been the technical director for the annual Chicago TARDIS convention. Aldred portrays television station manager Lynn Whitlam, who's not easily convinced to give up two hours of late night infomercial programming to take a chance on a new horror host show called 'Thriller Theater'. "The script was written with the Lynn Whitlam character never being seen - we only ever see the back of her head, or her hands; we only hear her voice. But when the opportunity arose to involve Sophie in the project, we jumped at it - who wouldn't - and we had the perfect role for her, all ready to go," says Olson. "We filmed her scenes in Madison, Wisconsin, during her appearance at the MadCon convention in September 2010. And of course, she was superb." Thriller Theater! (the movie) receives its premiere screening on 8 September 2011 at the Portage Theater in Chicago (funds for the screening are being raised via public contributions to Kickstarter.com). The movie is also being submitted to various film festivals throughout the country. For more information on the film, visit http://thriller-theater.com. [with thanks to Steven W. Hill]

Bernard Cribbins helped launch a new Wheelyboat that enables disabled visitors to access the waters of Farmoor Reservoir in Oxfordshire for fishing. A patron of the Wheelyboat Trust, he said: "It is of huge importance to give disabled anglers the same opportunities as able-bodied anglers." [BBC News, 19 Aug 2011]

Matt Smith was nearly cast in series The Inbetweeners, according to its creators Iain Morris and Damon Beasley: Matt Smith, the best Doctor Who of all time, was up for the role of Will. He was really, really brilliant and so funny, just a brilliant actor. And clever. He had all the comic timing you wanted, all the dramatic sense you might need. We spent a long time in development; I think if we had to make a decision very quickly and we were going off to shoot, we would definitely have gone with Matt at that point. But it just became a very long, drawn-out thing, and he had other projects on the go. Quite big projects, as it turned out, but we loved him." [Heatworld, 24 Aug 2011]

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

New Zealand Return Date

Doctor Who will return in New Zealand on Thursday September 15th at 8.30pm with Let's Kill Hitler.

The time was announced on Prime TV's Twitter feed.

The series returns to Australia this weekend.

Night Terrors: BBC Publicity

The BBC have now released the trailer for Night Terrors online:

Doctor Who: Night Terrors trailer, BBC, via YouTube

A number of publicity photos to tie in with the episode have also been released:

**** THE FOLLOWING PHOTOS SHOW SCENES FROM NIGHT TERRORS
**** AND MAY BE CONSIDERED SPOILERS







Day of the Daleks preview: Alister Pearson print

This Sunday (4th) sees a special preview taking place to celebrate the release of Day of the Daleks on DVD, presented by the Doctor Who Appreciation Society with permission from 2|Entertain.

Artist Alister Pearson has produced a new A4 print for the event based on the original artwork designs for the Target novelisation's three covers, by Chris Achilleos, Andrew Skilleter and himself. He'll be at the event to sign prints, proceeds of which are in aid of Help for Heroes; it can also be pre-ordered directly from the DWAS website via their Day of the Daleks event section, and these too will be signed by the artist.

Though the event itself is fully booked, there is an open autograph session at the end of the event at 5:00pm for those who wish to come along to pre-order the DVD on the day and have the cover signed by the guests, Katy Manning (Jo Grant) and Richard Franklin (Mike Yates) - it is also hoped that Scott Fredericks (Boaz) will be able to attend on the day as well. As with the print, a signed DVD can also be pre-ordered from DWAS online before the event takes place.


Full details on the event and associated merchandise/activities can be found via the DWAS website.




BBC ClassicDW have also released a clip from one of the special features on the discs.


Day of the Daleks preview clip, BBC Classic Doctor Who (via YouTube)

The Middle Men: Final Ratings

Episode Six of Torchwood: Miracle Day, The Middle Men, had a final official rating of 4.60 million viewers according to figures released by BARB.

The programme was the 18th highest rated on BBC One for the week.

The final result includes those who recorded the programme and watched it within 7 days. It does not include those watching on iPlayer.

Episode Seven, Immortal Sins, had an AI score of 81.

Let's Kill Hitler: Canadian Ratings

Saturday's showing of Let's Kill Hitler on SPACE was the most watched broadcast ever on the channel.

Around 834,000 people watched the transmission at 8ET on Canada’s national science fiction, horror and fantasy channel.

When the ratings for the repeat showings are added the episode attracted 1.2 million unique viewers. “Let’s Kill Hitler”, was the most-watched program overall on Canadian television for adult viewers (18-49 and 25-54).

Torchwood Miracle Day, ranked as the number 2 program among adults 18-49. The episode, End of the Road, drew 528,000 total viewers. Both episodes are available within Canada for viewing on spacecast.com.

Next Time: End Of The Road

Thursday (1st September) sees the eighth episode of Torchwood: Miracle Day premiering in the UK, with End Of The Road being broadcast at 9:00pm on BBC1/BBC1HD. The episode will also be repeated on BBC2/BBCHD the following Tuesday at 12:20am, and available to watch online in the UK via the BBC iPlayer until 23rd September.


PLOT SYNOPSIS FOR END OF THE ROAD FOLLOWS - MAY BE CONSIDERED A SPOILER



Captain Jack faces a showdown with a man he thought long since dead. But while Rex takes extreme action, is it too late to prevent the collapse of society?



Torchwood: End Of The Road preview, BBC, via iPlayer - may not play outside of the United Kingdom
Alternatively there is a YouTube version.


**** PUBLICITY PHOTOS FOR END OF THE ROAD
**** MIGHT BE CONSIDERED SPOILERS












Writer Jane Espenson recently talked to the BBC Press Office about her work on Torchwood.


Monday, 29 August 2011

Sarah Jane Screening

The British Film Institute is to preview the final series of The Sarah Jane Adventures with an special family exclusive screening of the first story followed by a question and answer session.

The final six episodes of the series, made before the tragic death of series star Elisabeth Sladen, are due to be shown on CBBC this Autumn. In the first adventure, Sky, Sarah Jane discovers a mystery baby on her doorstep. But with explosions, power surges and reports of a Metal man falling from the sky, Sarah Jane is convinced that there's more to the baby than there first seemed.

The screening on 16th September at 6:30pm is a family event, so all adults must be accompanied by children (Max 2 adults per 1 child).

Tickets can only be booked from BFI IMAX Box Office by phone on 020 7199 6000 or in person at BFI IMAX.

Tickets are £9.50, £6.75 Concs (BFI Members pay £1.50 less)

Courtesy of CBBC and BBC Wales.


Just a reminder, brand manager Edward Russell will be walking for charity from next week in order to raise money for the Meadow House Hospice, who looked after actress Elisabeth Sladen.


Let's Kill Hitler: Appreciation Index

Doctor Who: Let's Kill Hitler had an Appreciation Index score of 85.

The Appreciation Index or AI is a measure of how much an audience enjoyed a programme. Figures are based on ratings from a selected panel of 5000 people. The average score for BBC One is 80 with the average for the current Doctor Who timeslot being 82, and the average for Drama being 85.

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular for Melbourne

The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is to present the Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular next February as part of the celebrations for the grand re-opening of the Hamer Hall venue at the Melbourne Arts Centre.

The concert, similar to the format seen at the two Proms concerts in London, will feature music from the television series, combined with classic clips and live monsters.

More details will be available nearer the event.

(newslink: Herald Sun, Sydney Morning Herald)

Let's Kill Hitler: Press Reaction

A roundup of some of the comments in the press for the premiere of Let's Kill Hitler - the full articles can be read via the links. Please note that as these are reviews, spoilers may be present.


United Kingdom

Writing for the Telegraph, Michael Hogan commented:
The show is fond of dropping in historical figures these days. Shakespeare, Dickens, Van Gogh, Queen Victoria, Louis XV, Nixon and Churchill have all popped up since the series was rebooted six years ago. It’s a device which allows the writers to give viewers a playful history lesson, while offering extraterrestrial explanations for past events. Inform, educate and entertain… Lord Reith would approve, although he’d probably be baffled by this plot.
...
The script contained nods to several films: Nazi motorbikes were stolen like The Great Escape, Kingston purred a Mrs Robinson-ish “Hello, Benjamin”, some of the CGI sci-fi tricks recalled Men in Black and The Terminator. “Whopremo” Steven Moffat has compared his complex plotting to Inception, and he does tend towards the tricksy. This was jam-packed full of ideas, twists, turns and wibbly-wobbly time-bending stuff. Giddily thrilling entertainment, albeit rather exhausting. I don’t know how the Doctor does it at his age (a sprightly 909 at last count) but I wouldn’t mind being him when I grow up, either.

Meanwhile, the Telegraph's Doctor Who expert Gavin Fuller wonders if it was a wasted opportunity:
Packing plenty into an episode is all very well, but there is a fine line to be walked between over-egging the style and allowing plots to breathe, and this episode wasn’t totally successful in that count. Although it was enjoyable enough, and we certainly learnt a lot of the back story of Amy, Rory and River, I was left feeling that much more could have been done with the setting. Indeed, much of the story could have been set anywhere and any time, which is a waste of using such a resonant historical period as the backdrop.

Dan Martin of the Guardian said:
For all that, to me Let's Kill Hitler was far more successful as a season opener than A Good Man Goes To War was as a finale. Here was an energetic, timey-wimey tour de force with with gags and flourishes like the car and the crop circles that still maintained a strong sense of what it was about. Most fabulously of all, it was all about Doctor Song. ... If you could keep up, we were given a lot more answers than we might have dared to expect. Yes she did have regenerative powers, but in saving the Doctor she also sealed her fate to that ultimate 'death' in the Library. We learn where she got the Tardis diary. But we still have to deal with the mystery of who she is to the Doctor. Perhaps most brilliantly of all, we solve the continuity niggle of Alex Kingston's reverse ageing: "I might take the age down a little, just gradually, just to freak people out."

Shape-shifting robots and miniaturisation rays in Doctor Who are to be encouraged. But is there an argument, somewhere, that having River/Melody perceived by the people in the Tessalator as a worse war criminal than Hitler maybe, possibly, a little bit dodgy?

Kevin O'Sullivan of the Mirror:
Doctor Who... the usual ball of nerdy confusion as the Doctor and his time-travelling chums hurtled into 1939 Berlin and locked Hitler in the cupboard. Hee hee. A few amusing one-liners, superior special effects... and guest star Alex Kingston’s spirited portrayal of Amy Pond’s demonic daughter Melody. But what was it all about? Don’t ask me. Roll on The Silence.

Neela Debnath wrote in the Independent on Sunday:
Given the dark and depressing tone of A Good Man Goes To War, this episode lifted the mood and made things feel a lot lighter, possibly to create a balance. There were some great slapstick moments when River and the Doctor are trying to second-guess one another. River ends up pointing a banana in the Doctor’s face rather than a gun. Also, the Rory death count has begun and it is only a matter of time before it happens.

Richard Edwards of the Sci-Fi magazine SFX said:
Moffat’s script takes pleasure in wrongfooting you from the start, packing the episode with never-saw-that-coming moments and ingenious reveals. When that red sports car skids up to the TARDIS before the credits, it seems logical that River Song should step out, but no, it’s Mel… Who later turns out to be River Song anyway. Then there’s the Nazi officer-impersonating robot that turns out to be a vessel packed with hundreds of tiny people – very Men In Black – who travel around time and space dishing out justice to war criminals. An ingenious idea, brilliantly delivered – the morphing effects are Hollywood good.
...
Indeed, this has to rank among the cleverest Who episodes Moffat has ever written. After the intensity of “A Good Man Goes To War”, we needed something lighter – which “Let’s Kill Hitler” is – yet Moffat manages to mix the gags and silliness with genuine emotion, and some important additions to the season’s arc plot. Like the “birth” of River Song.

Simon Brew of Den of Geek:
The omission of sorts from the episode was actually Adolf Hitler. He was basically the MacGuffin here, in much the same way that the cybermen were teased in A Good Man Goes To War, and then blown up inside five minutes. In the case of Hitler, he had a few (good) jokes made at his expense, and then got locked in the cupboard. And left there. Let’s Kill Hitler, instead, was far more interested in complicating the relationship between its central characters, which it did terrifically well. Coupled with some of the snappiest dialogue of the show this series, it packed plenty into its near-fifty minute running time. It offered a stark reminder, too, that “the Doctor lies”. As if we didn’t know.


United States

Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly:
Doctor Who got off to a marvelously energetic, funny, clever, noble mid-season start on Saturday night with the episode titled “Let’s Kill Hitler.” Resolving the cliffhanger of the seventh episode by, with devilish perversity, raising more questions and introducing more plot lines — shaggy-dog story-telling being part of the series’ enduring charm — Doctor Who jumped across time and space in Steven Moffat’s witty script. ... As usual, Smith, Gillan, and Darvill played their roles with dash, while the show grounds them in some authentic emotion. As much fun as it was to see the morphing of River Song, it does leave Amy and Rory childless, doesn’t it? While the Teselecta got under the skin of various people, the series itself gets under the skin of its main characters, and its audience, in a unique manner that continues to play out.

Next Time: Night Terrors

The BBC have released an introduction to next week's Night Terrors, featuring guest star Danny Mays discussing his character and his thoughts on the script by writer Mark Gatiss:


Night Terrors: Danny Mays introduction, BBC, via the BBC Doctor Who site - may not play outside of the United Kingdom

In addition, the Next Time trailer for the episode is also available to watch online:

Night Terrors: Next Time Trailer, BBC, via the BBC Doctor Who site - may not play outside of the United Kingdom


Night Terrors will premiere on BBC1/BBC1HD at 7:00pm, 3rd September in the United Kingdom; it then follows on SPACE in Canada at 8:00pm ET, on BBC America in the United States at 9:00pm ET, and on ABC1 in Australia at 7:30pm on the 10th September.

The BBC synopsis for the episode follows, which might be considered a spoiler:



The Doctor receives a distress call from the scariest place in the Universe: a child's bedroom.

Every night George lies awake, terrorised by every fear you can possibly imagine – fears that live in his bedroom cupboard. His parents are getting desperate – George needs a doctor.

Fortunately for George, his desperate pleas for help break through the barriers of all time and space and the Doctor makes a house call. But allaying his fears won't be easy; because George's monsters are real.

Let's Kill Hitler: UK overnight viewing figures

6.2 million viewers tuned in to watch Let's Kill Hitler, according to unofficial overnight figures.

The programme had a share of 28.7% of the total TV audience and was the most watched programme of the day on BBC One. The total included 1.02 million viewers who were watching on BBC One HD.


The X Factor on ITV 1 won the day with 10.6 million watching. Against Doctor Who ITV1 scored 5.4 million for All Star Family Fortunes.

Doctor Who's audience was steady throughout the episode, with an initial figure of 6.2 million rising to a peak of 6.3 million. With one day to come, Doctor Who currently stands at 17th for the week.

Final figures, which will be released in 8 days time, should see the final total rise considerably, when those who record the episode and watch it later are factored in.

On BBC Three 0.51 million watched Doctor Who Confidential.

Friday, 26 August 2011

Immortal Sins: UK overnight viewing figures

Torchwood:Immortal Sins achieved an average audience of 3.4 million viewers on BBC One and BBC One HD, according to unofficial overnight figures.

The figure was the same as last week, although this week the main opposition came not from Big Brother, but from the first network showing of the feature film, The Duchess staring Keira Knightley and Ralph Fiennes, which gave BBC Two an average of 3.1 million viewers between 9pm and 10.40pm.

The seventh in the Torchwood series had 14.9% of the audience share and was the 10th most watched programme of the day. ITV1 was showing Show Me the Funny Live Final which had 2.6 million viewers. Torchwood started with 3.8 million viewers for the first quarter, which fell to 3.2 million, before recovering to 3.4 million.

As always the overnight figure is only half the story with the final ratings, which include those who record the programme and watch it within seven days, being released in 10 days time.

Mondays late night repeat of episode Six, The Middle Men. was watched by 0.3 million.

The premiere broadcast of the episode on Starz on 19th August achieved 662,000 viewers on its 9pm showing, with an additional 255,000 on the 11pm repeat that night. This gave an overall total of 917,000 viewers, showing an increase of 14% over the audience for The Middle Men the previous week.

Week 9 Schedules

The BBC has confirmed that episode Nine of the current series of Doctor Who, Night Terrors will be shown at 7pm on Saturday 3rd Sepetmber.

The start time is similar to that of the previous week's episode, Let's Kill Hitler which will be shown at 7.10pm this Saturday.

On BBC One Night Terrors will follow the second celebrity edition of All New Total Wipeout, which this week features comedian Dom Joly, former Blue Peter presenter Peter Duncan, actress Susie Amy and retired footballer Neil Ruddock. It is followed by The National Lottery: Secret Fortune.

ITV 1 will be showing a brand new series during Doctor Who, pitting the Time Lord up against his old enemy Ant and Dec. The Geordie duo will host a new game show, Red of Black?, in which contestants guess the outcomes of a series of challenges for the chance to win £1million on the spin of a wheel. It was Ant and Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway which provided the opposition to Rose, the first Doctor Who episode after the series took is long haiitus, it was a battle which Doctor Who won with 10.6 million viewers to Ant and Dec's 7.2 million.

The on the day winner is likely to be The X Factor at 8.15pm.

BBC Two will offer Flog It as an alternative to Doctor Who asking if a Monart vase, a bronze or naval memorabilia will bring home a profit.

Channel 4 offers Great Migrations, an insight into the motives that drive such creatures as walruses, whale sharks, zebras, orang-utans and plankton to migrate. while Channel Five has One-Day International Cricket, England v India.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Coming Soon: The Girl Who Waited

The BBC have released details for Week 37, which includes the synopsis of tenth episode of the current series of Doctor Who, The Girl Who Waited; this is due to be broadcast on BBC1/BBC1HD on Saturday 10th September, with the broadcast time yet to be confirmed.


**** THE FOLLOWING SYNOPSIS MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS





Amy is trapped in a quarantine facility for victims of an alien plague – a plague that will kill the Doctor in a day – as the time-travelling drama continues.

The Doctor can use the TARDIS to smash through time and break in, but then Rory is on his own. He must find Amy and bring her back to the TARDIS before the alien doctors can administer their medicine.

Rory is about to encounter a very different side to his wife. Can he rescue Amy before she is killed by kindness?

The episode is written by Tom MacRae and directed by Nick Hurran.

Next Time: Immortal Sins

Next Thursday (25th August) sees the seventh episode of Torchwood: Miracle Day premiering in the UK, with Immortal Sins being broadcast at 9:00pm on BBC1/BBC1HD. The episode will also be repeated on BBC2/BBCHD the following Monday at 11:20pm, and available to watch online in the UK via the BBC iPlayer until 23rd September.


PLOT SYNOPSIS FOR THE IMMORTAL SINS FOLLOWS - MAY BE CONSIDERED A SPOILER



Gwen must fight to protect her family, and takes a terrifying journey covering both miles and decades as the long history of the Miracle is revealed.


Torchwood: Immortal Sins trailer, BBC, via iPlayer - may not play outside of the United Kingdom
Alternatively there is a YouTube version.

Torchwood: Immortal Sins preview, BBC, via iPlayer - may not play outside of the United Kingdom


**** PUBLICITY PHOTOS FOR IMMORTAL SINS
**** MIGHT BE CONSIDERED SPOILERS













Wednesday, 24 August 2011

2012 SFX Awards

SFX have launched the Sci-Fi Awards for 2012, and unsurprisingly Doctor Who and Torchwood are suggestions for a number of the categories.


Both shows are suggested in the Best TV Show; others include Being Human, Fringe, Game of Thrones, Misfits, Primeval, and The Walking Dead. Matt Smith and Karen Gillan are suggested for the Best Sci-Fi Actor and Actress categories, with the latter also featuring Alex Kingston (River Song), Suranne Jones (Idris) and Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper/Torchwood); other nominees include Aidan Turner and Russell Tovey for Being Human, Andrew Lincoln for The Walking Dead, and Antonia Thomas and Lauren Socha for Misfits. Myles and Jones also pop up in the Sexiest Female category, with John Barrowman represented in Sexiest Male.

Best Monster or Villain sees Madame Kovarian and The Silence suggested, against enemies such as The Red Skull from Captain America, Crowley (played by Doctor Who guest star Mark Sheppard) from Supernatural and Loki from Thor. Best Special Effect is represented by the opening sequence from A Good Man Goes To War; this competes against Asgard from Thor, Paul from Paul, and the train crash in Super 8.

Doctor Who is also suggested in the Best Collectable, Model, Toy or Boardgame category, with the Character Building TARDIS mini set competing with the Fifth Doctor and Tegan fancy dress outfits, plus items like Thor's Hammer and Captain America headphones.

Finally, the UK censored scenes of Jack from Torchwood: Miracle Day is mentioned in the Biggest Disappointment or Missed Opportunity category; this contains amongst other things the fairies in True Blood, Stan Lee absent from X-Men First Class, and Outcasts!


These are SFX's suggestions - you can actually vote for anything that has been released, published or broadcast between 15th December 2010 and 19th October 2011 via the voting site.

The winners will be revealed live at the SFX Weekender that takes place in early February 2012 and will be hosted by author Robert Rankin; the results will also be printed in Issue 219 of SFX (due out on the 8th February).

Doctor Who Insider - Issue 6

The sixth edition of Doctor Who Insider will be available in North America from 1st September.

In this issue, Matt Smith looks to the future:
Steven Moffat told me about the first two episodes of next season yesterday and I nearly fell off my chair!

Also in this issue:

  • ONCE MORE UNTO THE BREACH... Matt Smith is back for adventures new as the Eleventh Doctor and he tells Doctor Who Insider what we have to look forward to.
  • BEING GREEN Insider talks exclusively to Neve McIntosh who has hidden beneath the scaly reptilian skin of three Silurians – sisters Alaya and Restac in The Hungry Earth/Cold Blood and the sword wielding Madame Vastra in A Good Man Goes to War.
  • WARRIOR WOMAN Insider concludes its exclusive interview with Louise Jameson who played the Fourth Doctor’s companion, Leela. Louise gives us her thoughts on each of the nine stories in which she starred and on her continued involvement with Doctor Who.
  • A NEW DAY As the 1972 story Day of the Daleks is released on DVD, Insider discovers how the Third Doctor’s first clash with his old enemies has been given a 21st Century makeover for a Special Edition version of the story.
  • I WAS... LORD CHARLES CRANLEIGH Actor Michael Cochrane recalls his adventures with two different Doctors – as Lord Cranleigh in the two‐part historical story Black Orchid opposite Fifth Doctor, Peter Davison, and as the barking mad Redvers Fenn‐Cooper with Seventh Doctor, Sylvester McCoy in Ghost Light.
  • NEXUS POINT The moment of all moments takes its bow this issue as the Fourth Doctor asks himself "Do I have the right?" when the fate of the Daleks lies in his hands in Genesis of the Daleks.
  • DATA FILE The First Doctor kicks off a new series of Data Files as we examine the life and times of each Doctor and the companions who traveled with him.
  • TIME SCOOP The Doctor’s own people, the once all‐powerful, but ultimately doomed Time Lords of Gallifrey are caught in the Scoop this issue.
  • THE RECREATION GENERATOR In this special TARDIS themed edition, we present the winner and finalists of BBC AMERCIA’s recent Where’s the TARDIS? competition.
  • MERCHANDISE Previews of the latest Doctor Who merchandise, including Day of the Daleks on DVD, featuring an interview with Valentine Palmer who played the rebel leader, Monia. Authors James Goss and Darren Jones discuss Hounds and Horror as their talking books, The Hounds of Artemis and The Eye of the Jungle are published by AudioGO. Writer Jonathan Morris tells us how he approached writing for the Weeping Angels in his latest Doctor Who novel, Touched by an Angel. And David J Howe updates us on the latest Doctor Who merchandise including a new range of 8” Doctor Who figures and plush Daleks!
PLUS! The latest official news and a giant, double‐sided poster of the Eleventh Doctor with Madame Vastra and the First Doctor.


For subscription information, visit the USA or UK websites.

Doctor Who Magazine 438

The new Doctor Who Magazine (out 25th August) celebrates the return of Doctor Who to our screens this weekend, with previews of the first four stories in this second half of the series, Let's Kill Hitler, Night Terrors, The Girl Who Waited and The God Complex, plus interviews with Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Alex Kingston, Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss, Tom MacRae and Toby Whithouse.

On the controversial title of the first episode:
Matt Smith: It’s Steven [Moffat, writer of Let’s Kill Hitler] being brilliant and mischievous. Also, it’s a direct reference to a line in the episode...

Karen Gillan: Pretty intense laughter from me, too, when Steven told us. It’s just the best title ever… We were, like, ‘Amazing.’ I just love it, because it sounds a little bit controversial. But the subject matter is tackled really well in the episode...

Steven Moffat: Hitler was through and through, appallingly, disgustingly evil. Hitler would be deeply pissed off to know that we treated him as a minor comic character in an episode of Doctor Who. But actually the Hitler story is a bit of a red herring. It’s actually a blatant continuation of A Good Man Goes to War...

Also in this issue:
  • Tough Crowd Doctor Who’s showrunner Steven Moffat faces his toughest crowd, in what his wife describes as "the best interview he’s ever given", in Production Notes.
  • Herr Today Actor Albert Welling is interrogated by DWM about his role in Doctor Who as the (second) greatest war criminal in history – Adolf Hitler.
  • Look, Who's Talking? DWM tries to get a word in edgeways as Matt Smith and the guest star in The God Complex, David Walliams, interview each other!
  • Miracle Workers Writer Jane Espenson, Tom Price (Sgt Andy Davidson) and Bill Pullman (convicted killer Oswald Danes) talk exclusively to DWM about their role in the spectacular new spin-off from Doctor Who, Torchwood: Miracle Day.
  • Perfect Day The classic 1972 story Day of the Daleks just got better! DWM finds out how a Special Edition of this classic 1972 Third Doctor story was created for its much-anticipated DVD release, and talks to the men responsible: producer Steve Broster, audio expert Mark Ayres and the voice of the Daleks, Nicholas Briggs.
  • Monster Invasion DWM takes a nostalgic look back at the 1972 season of Doctor Who – a series that saw the Third Doctor face the Sea Devils, the Ice Warriors and the dreaded Daleks – as our Countdown To 50 continues.
  • A New Direction The Doctor is dead, the world is in turmoil and only Donna Noble can save the Earth! The Fact of Fiction looks back to the acclaimed 2008 adventure Turn Left and uncovers the many secrets hidden within the story.
  • Tweet, Tweet! Want to know what the Sixth Doctor is doing right now? Or fancy reading what the writers of Doctor Who are thinking about today? Then you need Twitter! DWM proudly presents an invaluable guide to the Doctor Who people you should follow in 2011.
  • Kids These Days ... It’s been the subject of much heated debate: have fans today never had it so good? Or were things more fun in the "good old days", before Doctor Who became so easily accessible? Johnny Candon and Toby Hadoke argue the pros and cons of the case in A Battle of Wits!
  • Mum's the Word It was Steven Moffat’s first script for Doctor Who, and introduced the character of Captain Jack Harkness. But what will The Time Team make of the 2005 Ninth Doctor and Rose adventure, The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances?
  • The Impossible Chrononaut The Doctor and Amy pursue the impossible girl, Chiyoko, through time and space – and get a nasty surprise when then catch up with her – in the first part of a brand new comic strip adventure, The Child Of Time, by Jonathan Morris with art by Martin Geraghty.
  • Who's Round? The mysterious Watcher discusses the Doctor’s drinking, challenges readers with the Six Faces of Delusion and celebrates another unsung hero from the supporting cast in Wotcha!
PLUS! All the latest official news, TV and merchandise reviews, previews, competitions and a prize-winning crossword.

Doctor Who: Death Is The Only Answer

During the course of this summer, a competition was run by the BBC Learning Department and Doctor Who Confidential to promote creativity in schools by writing a short Doctor Who script featuring the Doctor, a monster and an adversary.

The BBC Press Office have now reported that the winning entry, Death Is The Only Answer, was written by pupils of Oakley Junior School in Basingstoke, and chosen by Doctor Who's head writer Steven Moffat, executive producers Beth Willis and Piers Wenger, and the Controller of BBC Learning, Saul Nassé.


Steven Moffat said:
I loved the shortlisted scripts, there was so much skill and enthusiasm on display that it was actually genuinely, very, very difficult to judge. There was some really, really skilled writing, it was very exciting how they caught the voice of the Doctor and how they used the always stringent limitations of Doctor Who to their advantage.

I come from a family of teachers, I was a teacher, my father's a teacher, my sister's a teacher. We go back teacher generations so it's hard wired for me to want the approval of teachers, so I'm very, very thrilled that its gone down so well with the schools that took part.

Saul Nassé said:
We've been delighted by the response from schools to the competition. We really wanted to motivate children to learn new writing skills and create the next generation of storytellers. Schools have really engaged in the competition and the standard of the writing has shown us that there is a wealth of talent out there which we have been able to tap into and hopefully encourage in the future. It's a great example of a really popular BBC show inspiring people do something truly educational.

The winning script has been made into a "mini-episode" to feature on BBC3 on 1st October, the same day as Doctor Who's series finale, The Wedding of River Song, is scheduled to be broadcast. Doctor Who Confidential followed the whole production process of making the episode from script through to filming, which will form part of this weekend's edition straight after Let's Kill Hitler at 8:00pm over on BBC3.

The Doctor himself, Matt Smith, added when recording the episode:
It was so clever, we were all just bowled over, it was a brilliant script.

Kevin Downing, a Year Six teacher at the school, said the pupils involved in the project were over the moon at winning:
Getting the call to say the pupils were on the shortlist of ten was an unbelievable moment – the thought that Steven Moffat himself would be reading their script! As for winning, it was the experience of a lifetime and one we'll never forget.


Details of the monster/adversary that the Doctor will face in the three minute special are to be revealed on broadcast.

(news Link: BBC News)

Anne Ridler

Anne RidlerThe actress Anne Ridler has died.

Anne Ridler played Gemma Corwyn the second-in-command of Space Station W3 in the 1968 Doctor Who story The Wheel in Space. After appearing in five episodes of the story she sacrificed her life to help the Second Doctor defeat the Cybermen.

Anne Ridler had a long and distinguished career first appearing on television in 1955 and going on to work on over 5 movies and 29 TV serials. Her first screen role was on TV with a regular spot alongside Francis Matthews in the Francis Durbridge series My Friend Charles. Her breakthrough came as a regular in Dixon of Dock Green, appearing as WP Sgt. Chris Freeman from 1962 to 1964. She had guest roles in Moonbase 3 in 1973 and The Tomorrow People in 1975 abd in the 1980' s she played voice of Kate Kestrel, Cy-Star and It-Star in Gerry Anderson's puppet-animated Terrahawks series.

She had small roles in the Hammer film Camp on Yangtse Incident (1957), the Michael Anderson-directed Blood Island (1958) and 633 Squadron (1963).

She played Jacqueline Shaffer in the Big Finish story Master.

Noel Collins 1937-2011

Noel CollinsThe actor Noel Collins has died at the age of 74.

Noel Collins appeared in 3 episodes of the 1989 Doctor Who story Battlefield where he played Pat Rowlinson, the landlord of the hotel in which the Seventh Doctor and Ace stayed while investigating an inter-dimensional distress call.

Collins was best known for his role in the long running BBC police series Juliet Bravo, where he played Sergeant George Parrish throughout the six year run of the show. He also appeared in Play for Today, When the Boat Comes in and the comedy series Bread.

Collins retired at the age of 60 after being diagnosed with lung cancer and undergoing an operation which involved removing a lung. In the 1990's he joined 52 other claimants in a £17million lawsuit against cigarette giants Gallaher and Imperial Tobacco arguing that the companies had been negligent in not reducing the tar content in their cigarettes between 1957 and 1971 once it became obvious that smoking caused lung cancer.

Although the case was dropped in March 1999 Collins retained his anti smoking stance until his death. His widow Helen Collins paid tribute to her husband's bravery in the face of his illness. "He was content in his life but also stoic during the bad times. He became very anti-smoking but he lived through his illness as best he could. Even in his last week he was still getting Juliet Bravo fan mail which he found amusing. He loved the theatre and really enjoyed his career, but without being pretentious or boastful."

Noel Collins died on 15 August after losing his long battle with cancer.