Brian Minchin Appointed As Co-Executive ProducerBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 30 April 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Brian Minchin has been made executive producer on Doctor Who alongside showrunner and lead writer Steven Moffat with immediate effect, it was announced this afternoon.

He replaces Caroline Skinner, who stepped down last month to join BBC Drama Production in London.

Minchin is an executive producer for BBC Wales's drama department, where he has been working on The Game, a new Cold War spy thriller from Toby Whithouse for BBC One, and Wizards vs Aliens, the Russell T Davies and Phil Ford co-creation for CBBC. He has also worked as BBC executive producer on Dirk Gently - based on the novels by Douglas Adams - and Being Human (another Whithouse creation).

He has been a script editor on Doctor Who and was a producer for spin-off series The Sarah Jane Adventures as well as the UK sections of Torchwood: Miracle Day, and was assistant producer on Torchwood: Children Of Earth.

Having grown up in Aberystwyth, Minchin joined the BBC Wales drama department in Cardiff in 2005 as a script editor working on the BBC One Wales production Belonging, before moving to network dramas Doctor Who and Torchwood in the same role.

He said:
I'm thrilled and excited to be joining Steven Moffat on a show that has meant so much to me over the years. I've watched in awe as Steven has taken Doctor Who to wild and imaginative places and I can't wait to get started on many more adventures with the Doctor.
Faith Penhale, the head of drama at BBC Wales, said:
I've no doubt Doctor Who will enjoy a very exciting time with Brian at the helm working alongside Steven. Since joining BBC Wales in 2005, he's proved he has a fantastic eye for story and a sharp awareness of what makes a drama like Doctor Who unmissable.
And Moffat added:
When I first took over Doctor Who, Brian was there as script editor, and in the most difficult time of a new Doctor and a new era was completely brilliant. We lost him to producing The Sarah Jane Adventures at the end of our first run. Rising talent keeps rising, is how I comforted myself back then - but now I am beyond happy that Brian has risen all the way back to Doctor Who in his new role of executive producer. I look forward to getting hopelessly lost in space and time with him.




Next Time: The Crimson HorrorBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 30 April 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
This weekend's adventure for the Doctor and Clara will be The Crimson Horror, written by Mark Gatiss and directed by Saul Metzstein. The episode will premiere on BBC One in the United Kingdom on Saturday at 6:30pm.

The Crimson Horror: Publicity Poster (Credit: BBC/Ray Burmiston/Adrian Rogers)There’s something very odd about Mrs Gillyflower’s Sweetville mill, with its perfectly clean streets and beautiful people.

There’s something even stranger about the bodies washing up in the river, all bright red and waxy. When the Doctor and Clara go missing, it’s up to Vastra, Jenny and Strax to rescue them before they too fall victim to the Crimson Horror!

The Doctor - Matt Smith
Clara - Jenna-Louise Coleman
Mrs Gillyflower - Diana Rigg
Ada - Rachael Stirling
Jenny - Catrin Stewart
Madame Vastra - Neve McIntosh
Strax - Dan Starkey
Angie - Eve de Leon Allen
Artie - Kassius Carey Johnson
Edmund / Mr Thursday - Brendan Patricks
Amos - Graham Turner
Effie - Olivia Vinall
Abigail - Michelle Tate
Urchin Boy - Jack Oliver Hudson

Written by Mark Gatiss
Directed by Saul Metzstein
Produced by Marcus Wilson
Executive produced by Steven Moffat and Caroline Skinner

Some minor changes to the schedule this weekend. The National Lottery: Who Dares Wins continues to follow on BBC One, but on ITV, Britain's Got Talent shifts to 7:15pm, no longer overlapping with Doctor Who; it is preceeded by You've Been Framed! Top 100 Weddings. BBC Two presents Dad's Army at 6:30pm followed by World Snooker at 7:00pm, Channel 4 has the news followed by Sarah Beeny's Selling Houses also at 7:00pm, and the Channel 5 movie for this week is Stone Cold.


Internationally, The Crimson Horror will be broadcast in the United States and Canada on BBC America and SPACE respectively at 8:00pm ET the same evening, and then on Sunday it can be watched in Australia via ABC at 7:30pm, Poland via BBC Entertainment at 6:00pm, and South Africa via BBC Entertainment at 7:00pm. Meanwhile, New Zealand viewers will see Hide this Thursday on PRIME at 8:30pm.

See This Week in Doctor Who for more details on scheduling and repeats.

The Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray BurmistonThe Crimson Horror. Photos: BBC/Adrian Rogers/Ray Burmiston




Campaign To Save Studios RenewedBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 30 April 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Campaigners are renewing their efforts to save film studios that have close links to Doctor Who.

Bray Studios, near Maidenhead in Berkshire, are probably most famous for the Hammer horror films that were made there, including some starring Peter Cushing, but they have also hosted TV work as well as band rehearsals.

Doctor Who used the facilities for six stories between 1972 and 1979 - namely, Frontier In Space, The Invisible Enemy, Underworld, The Invasion of Time, The Power of Kroll, and City of Death - and the studios were also used by Gerry Anderson for his shows.

The now-dilapidated site, owned by showbusiness agent Neville Hendricks, is set to be turned into seven executive homes but the Save Bray Studios campaign, headed by Robert Simpson, aims to halt the bulldozers in their tracks.

Mr Simpson told Doctor Who News:
Over the years the studios have been home to hundreds of films, television productions, including model work for Doctor Who, and music. They are now set for demolition and conversion into housing following a successful planning application, but the campaign is looking into halting this and exploring any options that would allow them to continue functioning as studios.

Director Terry Gilliam and Rocky Horror's Richard O'Brien have now lent their support publicly, and other big names are in the wings.
An online petition has been launched, which can be signed here.




Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS AI:85Bookmark and Share

Monday, 29 April 2013 - Reported by Marcus

Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS had an Appreciation Index, or AI score, of 85.

The Appreciation Index or AI is a measure of how much the audience enjoyed the programme. The score, out of a hundred, is compiled by a specially selected panel of around 5,000 people who go online and rate and comment on programmes.

Doctor Who scored higher than most of Saturday's output. The highest scoring programmes of the day were Casualty with 87, Dad's Army with 88 and Law and Order with 89.




Australian overnight ratings for Journey to the Centre of the TARDISBookmark and Share

Monday, 29 April 2013 - Reported by Adam Kirk



Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS has debuted in Australia, averaging 725,000 viewers in the five major capital cities. It was the ABC's top-rating drama of the day and the ninth highest rating program of the day overall. These ratings do not include regional or time-shifted viewers.
Media Links: TV Tonight




Sounds from the Inferno: limited copies still availableBookmark and Share

Sunday, 28 April 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Signum Books have a limited number of their special vinyl release of John Smith and the Common Men: Sounds from the Inferno available for order from their website.

The record - which featured Three Guitars Mood 2 from An Unearthly Child and music from The War Machines - was released for this year's Record Store Day, and is limited to 1000 copies.

Copies are on a first-come, first-served basis, and Signum Books will ship to the UK, Europe and the United States.


(with thanks to Marcus Hearn)




Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS: Overnight AudienceBookmark and Share

Sunday, 28 April 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS: The Doctor (Credit: BBC/Adrian Rogers)Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS achieved an overnight audience of 4.9 million viewers, a share of 26.7% of the total TV audience.

Doctor Who was third for the day, beaten by the usual suspects for the evening. Its final quarter hour overlapped the day's highest-rated show Britain's Got Talent on ITV, which was top for the day with 9.3m (9.8m with +1) watching, capturing a 43.9%(46.4%) share of the audience. The BBC's talent show, The Voice, on later in the evening, was watched by 8.0 million (35.5% share).

Final ratings will be released next week, which normally sees a substantial increase in Doctor Who's audience once those who timeshift the programme are factored in.





Harvest Of Time Book Details ReleasedBookmark and Share

Saturday, 27 April 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
BBC Books has released details of the forthcoming adventure Harvest of Time featuring the Third Doctor and the Master as well as UNIT.

Announced in July 2011, it has been written by Alastair Reynolds, who won a British Science Fiction Association award in 2001 for his novel Chasm City.

After billion of years of imprisonment, the vicious Sild have broken out of confinement. From a ruined world at the end of time, they make preparations to conquer the past, with the ultimate goal of rewriting history. But to achieve their aims they will need to enslave an intellect greater than their own . . .

On Earth, UNIT is called in to investigate a mysterious incident on a North Sea drilling platform. The Doctor believes something is afoot, and no sooner has the investigation begun when something even stranger takes hold: the Brigadier is starting to forget about UNIT's highest-profile prisoner. And he is not alone in his amnesia.

As the Sild invasion begins, the Doctor faces a terrible dilemma. To save the universe, he must face his arch-nemesis – the Master.

The 386-page book, which has an RRP of £16.99, will be published on Thursday 6th June and is available to pre-order.

Reynolds gained a PhD in astronomy and worked as an astrophysicist for the European Space Agency before becoming a full-time writer. His book Revelation Space was short-listed for both the Arthur C Clarke and BSFA Awards, while House of Suns was short-listed for the Arthur C Clarke Award.




The Robots of Death and City of Death on UKTVBookmark and Share

Saturday, 27 April 2013 - Reported by Paul Scoones

UKTV

Sunday 28th April sees the broadcast of two four-part Tom Baker stories, The Robots of Death (1977) and City of Death (1979) on Australian and New Zealand television. The two stories, screened back-to-back, are the 17th and 18th instalments in the 50th Anniversary season of Doctor Who stories on the UKTV channel.

The stories are scheduled in New Zealand at 2:30pm and 4:10pm, and in Australia at 2:30pm and 4:30pm respectively. New Zealand has an additional screening on Monday 29th April at 2:20am and 4:00am.

The Robots of Death was first broadcast in Australia in 1978 and in New Zealand in 1979. Both countries saw City of Death in 1980.


The UKTV billing describes the stories as follows:
The Robots of Death The Fourth Doctor & Leela land in the cargo hopper of a sandminer, whose crew are being murdered one by one. Suspicion falls on the two visitors, but they are freed by Poul.
City of Death The Fourth Doctor & Romana sense that someone is tampering with time. Who is the mysterious Count Scarlioni? & how many copies of the Mona Lisa did da Vinci paint?
UKTV is showing stories throughout the year in the lead-up to the anniversary in November. The Robots of Death and City of Death are the last in a set of six stories featuring Tom Baker's Doctor broadcast during April.

Next month showcases Peter Davison's Doctor, with six of his stories scheduled: Kinda (5 May), Earthshock and Snakedance (12 May), Frontios and Resurrection of the Daleks (19 May), The Caves of Androzani (26 May).

Up-and-coming broadcasts from both 20th and 21st Century series of Doctor Who can be found via UKTV's Doctor Who sections for Australia and New Zealand.





AudioGo: May releasesBookmark and Share

Saturday, 27 April 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
May will see the release by AudioGo of the next encounter for the Doctor in their ongoing 50th Anniversary series Destiny of the Doctor, this month reaching his fifth incarnation. Meanwhile, the latest audio adaption of the Target novelisations takes listeners on a trip to Peladon with the Third Doctor. Plus, readers also enter our competitions to be in with a chance to win copies.

Destiny of the Doctor: Smoke and Mirrors (Credit: AudioGo)Destiny of the Doctor: Smoke and Mirrors
Starring Janet Fielding, with Tim Beckmann

The Doctor answers a psionic distress call sent from England in the 1920s. There, in the environs of a fairground, he is reunited with an old friend: Harry Houdini. To Adric and Nyssa the name means very little, but to the Doctor's companion Tegan he is a legend. Escape artist extraordinaire, Houdini's reputation will last for decades. But how does Houdini know so much about Tegan herself? Is it really just guesswork, as he says? Is Houdini right to be concerned about the fairground's fortune teller, who claims to have supernatural skills? Both he and the Doctor suspect an alien influence may be at work.

What neither the Doctor nor his friends realise is that, somewhere in the shadows, a sinister and all too familiar presence is lying in wait for them...

Doctor Who: Smoke and Mirrors (Destiny of the Doctor 5) is an original adventure by Steve Lyons, a prolific writer of Doctor Who fiction, and is available as a CD or download from 2nd May. It’s performed by Janet Fielding, who played Tegan in the original TV series, and Tim Beckmann. The series is produced for AudioGO by Big Finish Productions.

To be in with a chance to win one of three copies of Smoke and Mirrors courtesy of AudioGo, answer the following question:
As mentioned above, Harry Houdini is an old friend of the Doctor's, and he recently featured in a festive online tale alongside the Eleventh Doctor - what was the name of that story?
Please send your answer to smoke-competition@doctorwhonews.net with the subject "Now get out of that!", along with your name, address, and where you saw this competition. Only one entry is allowed per household. The competition is open worldwide, and the closing date is the 5th May 2013.

Doctor Who and The Curse of Peladon, read by David Troughton (Credit: AudioGo)Doctor Who and The Curse of Peladon
Written by Brian Hayles
Read by David Troughton

When the TARDIS materializes on the primitive planet Peladon, the Doctor and Jo become embroiled in political machinations. What is the secret behind the killings on the planet, and how are his old enemies the Ice Warriors involved?

Again, the terrifying cry rang out. The Doctor quickened his pace along the gloomy tunnels of the castle. Suddenly, from the darkness lumbered the mighty Aggedor, Royal Beast and Protector of the Kingdom of Peladon! The Doctor fumbled in his pocket. Would the device work? As he trained the spinning mirror on the eyes of Aggedor, the terrible claws came closer and closer...

What is the secret behind the killings on the planet of Peladon? Is Aggedor seeking revenge because the King of Peladon wants his kingdom to become a member of the Galactic Federation? Will the Doctor escape the claws of Aggedor and discover the truth?

Doctor Who and the Curse of Peladon is Brian Hayles’ complete and unabridged novelisation, first published in 1974 by Target Books. It is read by David Troughton, who played King Peladon in the original BBC TV episodes. It is based on the original 1972 TV serial of the same name, featuring the 3rd Doctor (as played by Jon Pertwee). Doctor Who and the Curse of Peladon is available as an audiobook from AudioGO, on CDs or as an audio download, from 2nd May.


To be in with a chance to win one of three copies of The Curse of Peladon courtesy of AudioGo, answer the following question:
David Troughton played Peladon in the tale, but this wasn't his first appearance in Doctor Who - name his first role.
Please send your answer to peladon-competition@doctorwhonews.net with the subject "By the spirit of Aggedor!", along with your name, address, and where you saw this competition. Only one entry is allowed per household. The competition is open worldwide, and the closing date is the 5th May 2013.

In addition, AudioGo have also released an audio adaptation of the latest adventure for the Eleventh Doctor, Plague of the Cybermen:

Plague of the Cybermen (Credit: AudioGo)Plague of the Cybermen
Written by Justin Richards
Read by David Warner, with Nicholas Briggs as the Cybermen

When the Doctor arrives in the 19th-century village of Klimtenburg, he discovers the residents suffering from some kind of plague - a 'wasting disease'. The victims face a horrible death - but what's worse, the dead seem to be leaving their graves. The Plague Warriors have returned ...

The Doctor is confident he knows what's really happening; he understands where the dead go, and he's sure the Plague Warriors are just a myth. But as some of the Doctor's oldest and most terrible enemies start to awaken he realises that maybe - just maybe - he's misjudged the situation.
 

To be in with a chance to win one of three copies of Plague of the Cybermen courtesy of AudioGo, answer the following question:
Plagues, viruses and Cybermen go hand-in-hand, but in which story did they spread 'infection' through the use of sugar?
Please send your answer to plague-competition@doctorwhonews.net with the subject "You know our ways!", along with your name, address, and where you saw this competition. Only one entry is allowed per household. The competition is open worldwide, and the closing date is the 5th May 2013.