As we approach the 60th Anniversary of Doctor Who, revisit the story of Doctor Who, the occasional series written for the 50th Anniversary, explaining the origins of the programme.

Episode 4 - An Unearthly Series - The Origins of a TV Legend: First published 25 Jul 2012

Vastra Investigates on the BBC Red ButtonBookmark and Share

Thursday, 20 December 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Vastra Investigates. Image: BBCThe BBC have made the Doctor Who pre-Snowmen minisode Vastra Investigates available on television via the Red Button service.

Times currently announced are:


The service is available on Freeview, Freesat, Sky and Virgin Media.

FILTER: - Series Specials - Series 7/33 - BBC

Movie UpdateBookmark and Share

Thursday, 20 December 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Steven Moffat has spoken a little more about how he feels about a big-screen version of Doctor Who:
The thing that I would find intolerable is that you get a film instead of the TV series because the TV series is more important. And I don't think any showrunner or future showrunner of Doctor Who would tolerate the idea that David Yates was talking about, of rebooting it and having a second continuity. That's just nonsense. Absolutely insane and a straightforward insult to the audience. We'd never, ever do that. The question would be how could we do it without delaying or harming the TV show?

I think it could be incredibly exciting to see that TARDIS fly on the big screen. It would just be how do we arrange it? And how do we make sure we have … no offense, but you suddenly take American money and they expect to tell you what to do and all that. I wouldn't be happy with that. But it will happen someday, I'm reasonably confident.
The full interview can be read at Vulture.

FILTER: - Steven Moffat - Movies

DVD UpdateBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 19 December 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
An update on recent DVD announcements and developments.

The Legacy Collection

The Region Two covers for January's DVD release of The Legacy Collection have been released:

The Legacy Collection: Slipcase Cover The Legacy Collection: Shada The Legacy Collection: More Than 30 Years In The TARDIS The Legacy Collection

The Ark in Space (Special Edition)

Additional extras have now been classified by the BBFC for the release of The Ark in Space:
00:07:33:05 (SCENE AROUND SIX)
00:00:34:14 (EASTER EGG)
Scene Around Six is a presentation of the Northern Ireland film footage of Tom Baker visiting a school which was recently found and broadcast last year as part of Those Were The Days. Doctor Forever is the first of a five-part series by James Goss, taking a look at Doctor Who in different media.

The Region One details also report the inclusion of The Doctor Who Technical Manual as a PDF, plus tie-in promotional materials for Crosse & Blackwell, and Nestlé.

The Green Death (Special Edition)

During a DVD range discussion at last weekend's Midnight convention it was revealed that the fifth Special Edition DVD release for 2013 will be the Third Doctor story The Green Death. Originally released on a single disc, the revisited two-disc edition will enable the story to be presented in higher quality than before, and will include a full-length documentary by Chris Chapman. Revised production notes will be provided by Richard Bignell.

As a bonus, the DVD will also include the reunion of Josephine Jones née Grant with the Doctor in The Sarah Jane Adventures story Death of the Doctor, which includes a commentary with the writer Russell T Davies and Jo herself, Katy Manning.

Terror of the Zygons

The latest edition of Doctor Who Magazine confirms that Terror of the Zygons will have a production-oriented commentary, featuring Robert Banks Stewart (writer), Philip Hinchcliffe (producer), George Gallacio (production unit manager), Sylvia James (make-up), and Dick Mills (special sound), presided over by audio restoration producer Mark Ayres.

The Tenth Planet / The Ice Warriors

Talking to Radio Free Skaro earlier in the year about The Tenth Planet and The Ice Warriors, Steve Roberts said: "I don't think that either of those are actually into animation production at the moment, but certainly we have transferred the existing episodes of both of those stories and will be restoring them fully, with the expectation that there will be animations, presumably, to intertwine."

The classification of the trailer for The Ice Warriors earlier this month certainly indicates that this story looks likely to be released next year. Whether this will feature animated versions of the missing episodes two and three has yet to be announced, but both it and The Tenth Planet are expected to have their original VHS telesnap reconstructions included in the releases.

It is also hoped that the original Michael Craze introductions recorded for The Tenth Planet will also be included (Steve Roberts noted that the introductions by Carole Ann Ford for The Reign of Terror were excluded from that release due to space limitations on the disc).

FILTER: - Classic Series - Blu-ray/DVD

Doctor Who Night At The Institut FrancaisBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 19 December 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
The Institut Francais in London is to hold a Doctor Who Night next month.

Featuring big-screen showings of Blink, Midnight, and The God Complex plus a masterclass from writer Toby Whithouse, the event on Saturday 19th January is part of the cross-cultural organisation's second Totally Serialized season.

The aim of the TV festival, which runs from 16th to 20th January, is to showcase the best of new productions from both sides of the Channel as well as European TV shows. It will have screenwriters, directors, and actors attending, including Hugh Bonneville (albeit for his role as the Earl of Grantham in Downton Abbey).

The Doctor Who Night - which will also have a quiz, music, mystery guests, and a costume contest - starts at 7pm.

FILTER: - Special Events - UK

New TARDIS Interior RevealedBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 19 December 2012 - Reported by Harry Ward
The BBC has released a promotional image of the new TARDIS interior which will be seen in The Snowmen on Christmas Day.

The New TARDIS interior

FILTER: - Series Specials - Series 7/33

The Matt Smith Christmas ShowBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 18 December 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Today's Adventure Calendar release by the BBC features a behind-the-scenes video entitled The Matt Smith Christmas Show, in which the actor chats to new co-star Jenna-Louise Coleman, plus Kat from Costumes!

FILTER: - Doctor Who - Online

Doctor Who arrives in Burma and IndonesiaBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 18 December 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
BBC EntertainmentThe BBC have announced that it is to launch its BBC Entertainment channel in Burma from next year. The pay-TV channel will launch from 1st January 2013 alongside BBC World News and CBeebies, which will join the BBC World Service broadcast through the region's Forever Group.

BBC Entertainment showcases the best comedy, drama and light entertainment from the BBC and other UK production houses; this of course includes Doctor Who - so will mark the first time the series has been broadcast in the country!

Mark Whitehead, Senior Vice President and General Manager of BBC Worldwide Channels Asia, said:
I am pleased to be able to announce the launch of the BBC channels in Burma. We are very pleased to be part of Burma’s growing economy, and excited to be delivering our wide range of highly rated and award-winning programming - from programmes specially designed for pre-schoolers, to the best of UK comedy and drama and high quality international news to new viewers.

The BBC have also announced another first for Doctor Who, as BBC Entertainment is also introduced to Indonesia, to be broadcast via max3 from Biznet Networks. Mark Whitehead commented:
Indonesia is a very important part of BBC Worldwide’s growth strategy in Asia, and we are very pleased to be working with Biznet to launch our channels on their new platform. We are confident that the high quality and award winning programmes on BBC Entertainment, together with BBC World News and BBC Lifestyle will be popular with max3’s viewers.

Doctor Who on BBC Entertainment

At the time of writing the channel is currently showing Series 6 in Asia, and tonight will show last year's festive adventure The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe.

FILTER: - Doctor Who - International Broadcasting - BBC Worldwide - BBC Entertainment

Vastra InvestigatesBookmark and Share

Monday, 17 December 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The BBC have released a new minisode to lead into the Christmas adventure The Snowmen: Vastra Investigates catches up with the Paternoster Gang as one mystery is solved and another begins ...

The official BBC website has character backgrounds for Vastra, Jenny and Strax.

FILTER: - Online - Series Specials - Series 7/33

Doctor Who Encyclopedia Updated For iPadsBookmark and Share

Monday, 17 December 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
A revised and updated iPad app is being released for the Doctor Who Encyclopedia later this week.

Developed by Brandwidth with BBC Books, the app has up-to-date information on every episode since the show returned to our TV screens in 2005. New entries and images cover The Doctor, The Widow, and The Wardrobe, the first five episodes of Series 7, and mini-episodes such as Pond Life. In addition, four of the 11 portals have been updated.

  • Scroll your way through a complete A-Z of the show. You'll discover the Doctor's fiercest enemies and closest allies as well as key places and objects, and have the chance to preview and buy episodes.
  • There are 3,200 entries. Additionally, each entry has an episode reference, allowing you to search the encyclopedia by episode or series.
  • It contains 11 portals, with those for Amy, Rory, River Song, and the Daleks having been updated to reflect recent episodes.
The app is now optimised for iOS6, and BBC Books says that no more in-app purchasing is needed.

The updated app will be released on Wednesday 19th December.

FILTER: - Merchandise - Books - BBC

The Snowmen: new theme tune and title sequenceBookmark and Share

Monday, 17 December 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The BBC have announced that The Snowmen will feature a new arrangement of the Doctor Who theme tune, which will accompany a revamped opening title sequence:
The new arrangement remains true to the original, written by Ron Grainer back in 1963, but on Christmas Day you'll hear it as it’s never sounded before. This latest version is more thrilling and powerful but retains that slightly scary quality that remains stirring no matter how many times you catch it.

We can't give too much away about the new-look titles except to say they are wonderfully dramatic and striking, with a couple of unexpected touches. In short, they're a perfect way to welcome back the Doctor!

FILTER: - Series Specials - Series 7/33