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The Friday Docback Greets 'The Ambassadors Of Death'!! DOCTOR WHO Story #53, New Details On The Fate Of Amy And Rory, Will DW Shoot Down Under?, Put DW On The Cover Of TV Guide!, And More!!





Merrick here...


...with a look at Ambassadors of Death, a seven part Pertwee-era DOCTOR WHO adventure originally transmitted March-May 1970.  Per BBC Home Entertainment's new DVD, this David Whitaker script started life as a Patrick Troughton adventure and was re-worked by Terrance Dicks and Malcolm Hulke to accommodate incoming Doctor Jon Pertwee.  


More on Ambassadors shortly.  But first...







A Facebook page allows fans to ‘Like’ TV Guide Magazine and vote for a show they’d like to see on one of the publication's covers. KNOW you want to see DOCTOR WHO on its cover!   If you don’t, you should!  And if you don’t, why are you reading this?

DW recently graced the front of Entertainment Weekly for the first it’s time to make TV Guide happen!  Spread the word! Tel your fathers, your mothers, your brothers, your sisters, that strange person down the street who you’re really not sure about, your cats, dogs, and anything which can step on a keyboard!  

Details HERE...









This is a pretty great idea - as long as there’s a protracted scene in which the Doctor uncomfortably ponders the oddness of a kangaroo.  More on the Australian movement HERE.  


If not Australia, I think they need to go ahead and film an episode in my fair Austin.  In Southwest Austin, to be exact.  I’ll take ‘em some tacos and Twinkies and maybe some Starbucks from down the street, too - provided the Drive Through line isn’t too long.  Something tells me Matt Smith would like Twinkies.  He’s probably powered by them, now that I think about it.  


Thanks to MOV for the heads up regarding the two preceding posts!  







...revealing more about the fate of Rory and Amy.  




Thanks to Michael for pointing us towards this! 











Per BBC Home Entertainment... 



Street Date: November 20, 2012

Suggested Retail Price: DVD $249.95 ($294.00 in Canada)

Length: Approx. 4242 mins + bonus material / 41-disc set


Whether you’re shopping for the Doctor Who fan on your holiday list or looking to introduce the Doctor into someone’s life for the very first time, this limited edition set is truly the gift that keeps on giving. Or buy it for yourself, because c’mon now- would you really want to give this away? Collecting the complete series 1-6 featuring Christopher Eccleston (the ninth Doctor), David Tennant (the tenth Doctor) and Matt Smith (the eleventh Doctor), the gift set includes over 70 hours of Doctor Who in all. It also includes hours and hours of bonus features including 3 new Doctor Who Specials coming to DVD for the first time ever, a collectible 11th Doctor Sonic Screwdriver, 3 original art cards and the comic book, “Doctor Who at Comic Con.” It’s hard to imagine how so much content can fit in such a tiny box- you don’t think it’s bigger on the inside, do you?


It's now up for pre-order HERE or HERE.  












The Ambassadors of Death 



“Oh, well, I suppose he’s got to do something to occupy his mind now that he’s blown-up the Silurians...”  the Doctor, Ambassadors of Death - Episode One 



For much of its running time, The Ambassadors of Death represents one of the finer stories of the Pertwee era.  Handheld camera work lends a grittiness to a number of well-conceived and nicely crafted action scenes (featuring at least three blazing gun battles...



....a painful looking tumble down a mountainside, a UNIT dude trying to board a flying helicopter whose call sign is ‘G-AWFUL (God Awful?), a vehicle which redresses its surface on command, and other James Bondian affectations.  Don Goddard and Chris Wimble’s editing is tighter and sharper than much WHO of that era - bringing Ambassadors an often edgy or unnerving quality.  


An abundance of thought and effort went into the realization of this episode...from its plus-sized locales... critical minutiae, like the surreal quality of video transmissions between Earth and nearby human spacecraft...



Performances are generally solid across the board, with  an extra tip of the hat to Nicholas Courtney’s Brigadier (who gets a great deal of screen time and action in this one...) and Ronald Allen’s steely Mission Control boss, Cornish.  


Dudley Simpsons’s strangely lounge-like music doesn't feel entirely at place in a DOCTOR WHO story which features mysterious, space-suited something-or-the-others, missing astronauts, a  big-ass space vessel not at all dissimilar to STAR TREK”s Doomsday Machine...



l - 1970's Ambassadors of Death ship, r - 1967's Doomsday Machine (remastered)


...and unit operatives going weapons hot on a number of occasions - but the composer does invest considerable effort into creating a score which boasts strong thematics and at least some sense of narrative awareness.  This is opposed to the more generic sounding, plinky, sometimes inappropriate music which was often laid down over early WHO.  For my money, DOCTOR WHO music was often a considerable distraction/defect until current composer Murray Gold came along. 


Did Ambassadors' spooky spacesuit guys (top) inspire Steven Moffat's eerie undead in Silence in the Library / Forest of the Dead (below)?



David Whitaker’s script plays out its well-conceived mystery cleverly, effectively, and even unpredictably.  Whitaker, who previously wrote The Edge of Destruction (Hartnell, Story # 3) and The Crusade (Hartnell, Story # 14), seems content to feed his audience ONLY essential information throughout most of the story.  There’ a lovely sense of expedition at play here, and a premium placed on keeping matters moving along.  This propensity is is strongly reinforced by Director Michael Ferguson (The Seeds of Death - Troughton, Story #48), who once again brings his recognizable style and efficiency to these proceedings with cutting and camerawork which stamps Ambassadors with a frequently cinematic air.  Ferguson’s absorbing pre-occupation with the  intricacies of devices and procedures - a tendency brought to the forefront in Seeds - returns here as well, sucking the audience in with a very ‘real’ feeling and busy world.  


With so very, very much going for it...why did I begin this review with a qualified statement?  The payoff.  As exceptionally well executed as Ambassadors often is, the reveal of the mechanisms behind its plot and mystery (i.e. the impetus and details of a conspiracy) feel a bit too dunderheaded and simple.





I do like the notion of one man’s misguided apprehensions and beliefs setting into motion a chain of apocalyptic events.  After all, human history is filled with such occurrences - thus the conceit does feel truthful and relevant. 


Here, though, the actions and rationale of the individual in question feel unfocused and slap-dash...unsupported.  Clumsy, perhaps?  Some of the ideas at play in this regard are more or less in the ballpark, but haven’t been shaped to their fullest extent or palatability.  This amplifies some of the over-produced maneuverings into which Ambassadors'  three remote-controlled astronauts are inserted - resulting in a Looney Tunes sensibility which starts to creep in to some of the bad guys’ schemings later in the game.  This story’s ALMOST there...just not completely formed.  



Extras on Ambassadors’ newly released DVD mention difficulty during this story’s script development.  While the whole of the piece can be remembered as generally precise, large-scaled, fun entertainment, these behind-the-scenes complications (this story was intended as a Troughton vehicle, and there were complications when re-purposing it for Pertwee) likely resulted in the above-mentioned lack of development, or mis-development.  Even with these frustrating misgivings aside, Ambassadors is hugely enjoyable and well paced entertainment - and ultimately manages to shine through some of its characters’ wobblier motivations.  


The newly restored Ambassadors of Death is now available HERE in the US and is HERE in the UK.  




Extras include...




Mars Probe 7: Making The Ambassadors of Death (25:51)


-- Terrance Dicks (Script Editor)


-- Michael Ferguson (Director)


-- Derek Ware (Stunt Arranger)


-- Margot Hayhoe (Assistant Floor Manager)


-- Discusses the bumpy conversion of this story from its Troughton-era origin to its Pertwee-era production...


-- Director Ferguson says his work on Ambassadors included amping up the electronic "scream" which ends each episode - this more pronounced effect has remained with the show since then.





Trailer (1:28)





Tomorrow's Times: The Third Doctor   (13:07)


Host Peter Purves (Hartnell- era companion Steven Taylor) looks at press reaction to Pertwee-era DOCTOR WHO, via material amassed by the British Library's Newspaper Archives in London (including a very brief but interesting quote from first Doctor William Hartnell). 


Includes one critic's dressing down of Terrance Dicks for having a character scrape out a Dalek life form from its chassis - believing Daleks were pure robot and insisting that Dicks got it wrong.




Photo Gallery (4:26)







-- Radio Times Listings 






Coming Soon (1:05)








Glen Oliver




Google +

















[Season / Series Seven Docbacks - MOST RECENT DOCBACK IS HIGHLIGHTED]


The Coming of Season/Series 7

Asylum of the Daleks 

Dinosaurs on a Spaceship

A Town Called Mercy 

The Power of Three 

The Angels Take Manhattan 






"The Impossible Astronaut"

"Day of the Moon"

"The Curse of the Black Spot"

"The Doctor's Wife"

"The Rebel Flesh"

"The Almost People"

"A Good Man Goes To War"

"Let's Kill Hitler"

"Night Terrors"


"The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe" (2011 Christmas Special)  





"An Unearthly Child" (Story #1)

"The Daleks" (Story #2)

"The Edge of Destruction" (Story #3)

"Marco Polo" (Story #4)

"The Keys of Marinus(Story #5)

"The Aztecs" (Story #6)

"The Sensorites" (Story #7)

"The Sensorites" (Story #7 - full DVD release) 

"The Reign of Terror" (Story #8)

"Planet of Giants" (Story #9) 

"The Dalek Invasion of Earth" (Story #10)

"The Rescue" (Story #11) 

"The Romans"  (Story #12) 

"The Web Planet" (Story #13) / SHERLOCK - "A Scandal in Belgravia" (Story #4)

"The Crusade" (Story #14) 

"The Space Museum" (Story #15) 

"The Chase" (Story #16) 

"The Time Meddler" (Story #17) 

"Galaxy 4" (Story #18) 

"Mission to the Unkonwn" (Story #19) 

"The Myth Makers" (Story #20) 

"The Gunfighters" (Story #25)

"The Tomb of the Cybermen" (Story #37)

"The Mind Robber" (Story #45)

"The Krotons" (Story #47)

"The Seeds of Death" (Story #48) 

"Spearhead from Space" (Story #51) 

"The Colony in Space" (Story #58) 

"The Daemons" (Story #59) 

"Day of the Daleks" (Story #60) + Preview of the DotD Special Edition

"The Three Doctors" (Story #65) 

"Carnival of Monsters" (Story #66) 

"Death to the Daleks" (Story #72) 

"Invasion of the Dinosaurs" (Story #71) and SHERLOCK: "The Reichenbach Fall" (Story #6) 

"The Android Invasion" (Story #83) and SHERLOCK: "The Hounds of Baskerville" (Story #5) 

"The Face of Evil" (Story #89) 

"The Robots of Death" (Story #90) 

"The Talons of Weng-Chiang" (Story #91)

"The Sun Makers(Story #95)

"The City of Death" (Story #105)

"Nightmare of Eden" (Story #107) 

"Kinda" (Story #118)

"Snakedance" (Story #125) 

"The Five Doctors" (Story #129) 

"The Awakening" (Story #131)

"Frontios(Story #132)

"Resurrection of the Daleks" (Story #134) 

"The Caves of Androzani" (Story #136) 

"Vengeance on Varos" (Story #138) 

"Time and the Rani" (Story #144)

"Paradise Towers" (Story #145) + New WHOvian Documentary / Newsbits

"Dragonfire" (Story #147) 

"The Happiness Patrol" (Story #149) 

"The Greatest Show in the Galaxy" (Story #151) 

"Doctor Who: The Movie" (aka TVM) - McGann) 


Merrick's Personal Journey With The Doctor (How Merrick Got Hooked On DOCTOR WHO)

DOCTOR WHO Title Sequences & DW At Comic-Con 2011

"The Crash of the Elysium" (Manchester version - interactive DOCTOR WHO adventure)

Why Eccleston Left, Here Comes Caroline Skinner, And Season/Series Six Part 1 on Blu-Ray And DVD

New Trailer For Season/Series Six Part 2

The Companions of DOCTOR WHO + New Trailer & Artwork For Season/Series 7  






1) a Docback should be about completely open and free discourse regarding all things WHO with, obviously, some variation on subject matter from time to time - the real world intervenes, discussions of other shows are inevitable, etc.)... 

2) matters of SPOILAGE should be handled with thoughtful consideration and sensitivity.  Posts containing SPOILERS should clearly state that a SPOILER exists in its topic/headline and should never state the spoiler itself . "** SPOILER ** Regarding Rory" is OK, for example.  "** SPOILER ** Battle of Zarathustra" is fine as well.  " **SPOILER** Why did everyone die?"  Is NOT good.  
And, above all... 

3) converse, agree, disagree, and question as much as you want - but the freedom to do so is NOT a license to be rude, crass, disrespectful, or uncivilized in any way.  Not remaining courteous and civil, as well as TROLLING or undertaking sensational efforts to ignite controversy, will result in banning.  Lack of courtesy may receive one (1) warning before a ban is instigated.  Obvious Trolling or Spamming will result in summary banning with no warning.  One word posts intended to bump-up any Docback's figures on AICN's "Top Talkbacks" sidebar will be considered actionable Spam - they not only complicate efforts to access Docback from mobile devices, but impede readers' abilities to follow or engage in flowing conversation. 
In short, it's easy.  Be excellent to each other.  Now party on... 
Readers Talkback
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  • Oct. 12, 2012, 8:30 a.m. CST

    I don't like that Rory telegram

    by HornOrSilk

    Though it settles things -- his father knows -- it still just seems like a repeat of Blink. Too much the same note.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 8:30 a.m. CST

    Ambassadors of Death

    by HornOrSilk

    I think it would be more appreciated if it were two episodes shorter. There is good in it, but drawn out. And it clearly borrows from Quatermass.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 8:41 a.m. CST

    Multi episode stories..I miss you.

    by higgledyhiggles

    Character, tension, weight. Modern Who is a little light and fluffy.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 8:44 a.m. CST

    7 eps is a bit much

    by I am_NOTREAL

    Unless I'm mistaken that makes it one of the five longest ever...this is without any research so don't hurt me: The Dalek Master Plan -12 The War Games - 10 The Invasion - 8 (?) Inferno - 7 Ambassadors -7

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 8:50 a.m. CST

    i am_notreal

    by HornOrSilk

    Seven can work, when done well. Marco Polo, Silurians and Evil of the Daleks were also 7, and Trial of a Time Lord 14. But you are right, 7 can also be too long, and I think it is for AoD.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 8:57 a.m. CST

    But to higgledyhiggles' point

    by I am_NOTREAL

    The adjustment from the multi-episode stories of classic era to the (mostly) one-shot modern era has been tough for me. 4 episodes is a great length. 6 borders on too much but can work for just the right story (Talons of Weng-Chiang or Genesis of the Daleks). The new shows to me roughly match up lengthwise with a two-episode serial from the good old days. Or maybe I'm just a fogey.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 8:59 a.m. CST

    in which the Doctor uncomfortably ponders the oddness of a kangaroo

    by Kathryn Gail A religion? Well that's an interesting thought exercise, but no; having a cosmology isn't the same as being a cosmology! P.S.: no no it's just my allergies making my eyes water a lot. . .

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 9:01 a.m. CST

    Yes, Evil of the Daleks works so well...

    by ProfWimsey

    ... such a shame that there are not more than 20 people who actually remember watching it! I would give up a tooth to do so, though.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 9:05 a.m. CST

    Rorygram was good, but too similar to what was done in Blink

    by ProfWimsey

    That's not a huge criticism: I mean, who wouldn't do that? Trying to come up with something "different" would probably strain credulity: that would have been by far the simplest thing to do. Moreover, Rory's dad was too new to the show (although he was a good character!) and much though I liked Rory (one of the best male companions ever: I'd rank him with Jack Harkness and Jaimie MacCrimmon), Amy was "the" companion.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 9:06 a.m. CST

    The scene that never was.

    by Captain Howdy

    Glad to have watched it, but relieved it was never filmed. I much prefer the ambiguity that remains regarding their departure and how they might have spent the rest of their days. Have never seen 'The Ambassadors of Death' so cannot comment, other than to say I will rectify this fact before the week is out.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 9:06 a.m. CST

    Heard so much good about Ambassadors of Death.

    by wtriker1701

    I'm clearly giving it a chance. Storytelling in the middle seems a little befuddled according to some reviewers... but the overall tone makes me buy this one - especially since this remastered version is said to be vastly superior compared to the older VHS tapes, where many sequences have been black and white as far as i read.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 9:17 a.m. CST

    Rorygram - with spoilers if you haven't watched it...

    by dj_bollocks

    I loved it - as someone who wasn't able to say goodbye and thanks to my father I found it quite poignant. ' I think clearly the reason it wasn't filmed is because it ties Rory and Amy (R&A) back into modern day which Moff won't want to do until he will inevitable revisit the Pond's (or at least want to be able to). For continuity's sake having a new Pond leaves the complications of another actor's availability or having to explain why Anthony wasn't there in any future Pond story, much easier, so I can see why it wasn't the natural end of the story. Good though.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 9:35 a.m. CST

    Great write-up

    by DrAstroZoom

    And interesting spacesuit comment! I wish Netflix streaming would get more of the old serials on. I think I've exhausted their supply.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 10:17 a.m. CST

    Would a longer multi-episode story fly with viewers nowadays?

    by Bill C.

    I don't mean US, necessarily, but the public at large...underlying arcs are accepted, sure, and the odd two-episode story (three if you count 'Utopia' with 'The Sound of Drums'/'Last of the Time Lords') has manifested about once or twice per season, but would they accept a straight, say, four or five-episode-long story as a primary story? And what could they focus on for four or five straight episodes without screwing it up? (That said...we ARE coming up on the 50th Anniversary really fast. If they were going to do something like this, now's the time.)

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 10:22 a.m. CST

    Rorygram (spoilers)

    by DoctorTom

    yes, it was similar to Blink, but that isn't surprising. The adopted son makes sense given that in Asylum of the Daleks Amy was upset that she couldn't have any more babies. The only thing that I would have expected that wasn't included in P.S. was Rory telling Brian she also has a granddaughter who's sort of married to the Doctor.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 10:28 a.m. CST

    Ambassadors isn't bad

    by DoctorTom

    I need to watch it again since it's been a while, but I think I agree with the comments that it could have used a couple of episodes of trimming. It was originally going to be a 6 part story for Troughton, then reworked by different people into a Pertwee story. The story itself had many good bits, though. It's amusing to think that this is the worst story of Season 7, since most seasons would love to have a story like this be the worst in the season. Some seasons as a whole would love to have the bulk of their stories be at this level.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 10:30 a.m. CST

    redshirt_24 - we've already kind of had that

    by DoctorTom

    last season in Doctor Who. The large arc was dangled over several stories.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 10:46 a.m. CST

    Hey Herc, can we get a dedicated Fringe talkback please?

    by Paul

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 10:52 a.m. CST

    paburrows_rises - you need to pay attention

    by DoctorTom

    Herc doesn't even run this thread, which is obvious when looking at the thread itself. Try going with one of his if you really want it instead of spamming threads you're not bothering to read.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 11:17 a.m. CST

    doctortom: true, but for me that falls under "underlying arc."

    by Bill C.

    Or at least "arc," since it wasn't right out in front all the time. This would be a single story they'd be focusing on first and foremost for several episodes, which probably brings me back to "what could they focus on for that long?"

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 11:40 a.m. CST

    I still think the best idea would be a Dalek Empire season

    by HornOrSilk

    The Doctor's TARDIS has been lost (one way or another), and he is in the middle of the Dalek Empire. There is no way he can control the destiny of the whole; he might not be able to save people he would like to save. He is in hiding, trying to find his way back to the TARDIS. It would be a combination of Doctor Who, The Fugitive, early Pertwee. The whole season could be called "The Dalek Empire." It would be similar to the Daleks Masterplan in ability to have some diversions in the story, but it would be one story overall

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 12:19 p.m. CST

    Never saw this in color! The only complete copies PBS had in the 80s...

    by obijuanmartinez

    ...of some of Pertwee's 1st 2 @ seasons were B&W, like Silurians & The Mind of Evil. Will maybe have to watch this one again, since it's been so long, and Pertwee's my 2nd favorite Doctor

  • long as you're not spoiled too badly by HD, etc., and don't mind 240/360/480p resolution

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 12:36 p.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    It's a restoration process which they have done. All Pertwee will now be in color, though some better color than others.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 12:45 p.m. CST


    by Hellstrom

    I think they didn't use that postscript scene because isn't Amy UNABLE to have kids after Demon's Run?? I don't think being zapped backwards in time would solve whatever sterizilation happened.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 12:52 p.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    The kid is adopted

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 12:56 p.m. CST


    by Hellstrom

    thats what I get for watching things at the office half-heartedly :)

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 1:07 p.m. CST

    hellstrom that's ok

    by HornOrSilk

    Until that line, I thought the same problem. Especially since he looked like Rory!

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 1:15 p.m. CST

    Latest Season Major Plot holes ..

    by Daren Salter

    I'm really sorry if this has been discussed before but I can't get over the massive plot holes in the latest season. First of all in Asylum of the Daleks - The Daleks kidnap the Doctor to help them sort out the Asylum planet. HOW? - The Doctor was supposed to have been killed last season and was now living in the shadows as he got too big. Next up, in the Angels take Manhattan, River tells the Doctor that she was released from prison as the Doctor was apparently wiped from existence so the crime didn't take place. This again is also wrong is it not? - Oswin made the Daleks forget him in AOTD - he wasn't wiped from existence everywhere? This really does seem like a major hole in the story and very sloppy story telling to me. Any thoughts?

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 1:24 p.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    With the Daleks, apparently they heard he didn't die. They are smart like that and can see beyond the smoke and mirrors. However, with others, it seems the Doctor (or Oswin) is also up to something. I think we will see more of this come Christmas.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 1:30 p.m. CST

    Neither is a plot hole....

    by ProfWimsey

    River points out that somebody's been erasing the Doctor, and the Doctor hinted at the end of last year that he was up to something like that. In Asylum, he explains to Oswin that even he couldn't hack into the Daleks systems, and there is no reason why they would think he was dead. They know that the Doctor is harder to kill than James Bond: the last 30 reports of his demise were premature, after all. Indeed, what the episode setup was a plausible way for the Doctor to extract himself from the Dalek's eyes.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 2:31 p.m. CST

    I kind of hated River's 'Pardon' joke...

    by Stegman84

    Strictly on the bounds that it made absolutely zero sense and as such was too big a leap, even as an off the cuff and throw away jokey comment. She was pardoned because the person she was locked up for killing suddenly didn't exist. Then why would she have ever been accused and locked up in the first place, let alone kept that way. I mean you can always come up with some long winded round about explanation, but the whole idea just seems (to me) so incredibly and implausibly stupid it just bugged me (for all of ten seconds...I mean its not something that really matters).

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 2:37 p.m. CST

    Invasion of the Dinosaurs episode 1 still isn't in colour

    by Stegman84

    They tried to do a colour restoration job on that one and failed, so the official dvd episode is still in black and white. However the colour attempt is on the disc as an extra, and shows that they were right to dump it as the official first episode on the disc. I'd love to see babelcolour take a shot at it some time in the future, however, now that he's officially doing work for the range. Though unless they were going to do an SE where they included CGI replacements for the dinosaurs, I don't know how popular a second release of that story would be.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 2:51 p.m. CST

    Time travelling couple...

    by MattDomville

    ...That acquired their ideas about gender roles from the 19th Century. Why the heck is their last name Williams? They're the Ponds, dangit. Annoying.

  • And his efforts to basically ride the coat tails of the Peter Jackson/New Zealand Who episode hype train from a few weeks back have gained him pretty much zero publicity in Australia, not that much more worldwide, and only around 2200 signatures thus far for his petition, despite it being run on most Who related sites and feeds as a news item. The one and only time I saw him interviewed on the subject he came across (to me) as someone who was really just using this as a gimmick to get his own name out there anyway, in a very politician type 'hey, me too' kind of way. That said, if they did an episode in New Zealand then they'd be pretty silly not to do one shot in Australia while they were down here anyhow, given that, just like NZ, Australia has plenty of very unique and filmic areas that could be well suited to an episode of the show. Plus Matt Smith has said that he'd like to do an episode down in Australia on more than one occasion in the past...of course he may have just been being polite. And, to paraphrase what another Aussie fan wrote recently: Australia gave you guys the theme music, the TARDIS' appearance, the first episode's script, a companion, a pop star, the first (and best) Sontaran, two key writers, two key composers, and a director. We have a dedicated Doctor Who Club that was formed way back in the 70s and regular conventions that ran even during the lean years. We were the first, and one of the largest English speaking countries, who regularly and continually purchased each series for broadcast. All we're asking for is one episode filmed here sometime. So if you're in the neighbourhood anyway...

  • The Doctor really should visit Australia and New Zealand. I'd also like to see a non-New York based American episode and something officially taking place in Canada [TV Movie doesn't count since that was supposed to be in San Francisco]. The Doctor has to get around the Anglosphere a little bit more. And as plenty of people have suggested on GallifreyBase, a Bollywood-esque episode set in India would be pretty sweet. And I'd certainly like to see a Hong Kong based episode too. BBC Worldwide should be able to pay for such episodes since it would probably stretch the resources of BBC Prime a bit much logistically speaking to do all that, not to mention BBC Worldwide would profit greatly from it.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 6:09 p.m. CST

    Only up to the middle of Series/Season 6 ...

    by DrMorbius

    but yeah, the Rorygram, immediately evoked the BLINK episode. Not necessarily a bad thing.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 6:43 p.m. CST

    How was it a joke?

    by ProfWimsey

    River was jailed for murdering a person. Later, that sentence was revoked due to new evidence: namely, it seems that the victim did not really exist, and thus she had been falsely imprisoned. It's no different from a prisoner being exonerated by proof that a crime simply was never committed.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 6:49 p.m. CST

    Ambassadors of Death

    by Rebel Scumb

    My copy should arrive from amazon next week, looking forward to some new Pertwee. Only one more of his stories left to be released after this Although I haven't grabbed planet of the spiders, day of the daleks or The Mutants yet (waiting for black friday when they'll likely be on sale) so I still have a few 'new' Pertwee's to look forward to.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 7:22 p.m. CST

    Pertwee was an excellent Doctor....

    by ProfWimsey

    He was a great combination of James Bond and Sherlock Holmes. I wonder if his son, Sean, would be up for playing his father's Doctor in a 50th anniversary episode: with a wig and a little prosthetic, he'd carry off his father well.

  • There is so much stuff that could have been axed from Angels to make room for that. It really blows my mind they had that scripted and felt it wasn't needed.

  • Oct. 12, 2012, 9:26 p.m. CST


    by Rebel Scumb

    I've often suggested that would be a good idea Troughton's son (no stranger to appearing in Who himself) also could pull off his dad well.

  • I mean how bad and incompetent would a legal system have to be for that to be even remotely possible? And it was the fact that it was said in a jokey, off the cuff manner that I was referring to.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 1:03 a.m. CST

    River's pardon..

    by AssadK

    Well.. my issue with it was that, she was apparently convicted of killing the Doctor. Who is known to be a Great Man. But.. does that mean noone actually REMEMBERS the Doctor? Does his Wikipedia entry being deleted mean that everyone who met him just shrugs and says 'Eh, I guess that madman in the blue box was never here.' The micropeople no longer know he ever existed? Something's awry. Ambassadors of Death is highly enjoyable, except that I have to share the Brigs bewilderment that a bunch of thugs are able to fight UNIT to a standstill...

  • I love Jon Pertwee, and Sean Pertwee is a damn fine actor. I love Patrick Troughton, and bith David and Michael Troughton are fine actors. However I would never be able to suspend disbelief and see Sean Pertwee as Jon's Doctor, or David or Michael Troughton as Patrick's. As different characters, or even as their own distinct version of The Doctor if it were to ever come to pass, sure, but while they may be their father's sons, they will never be their fathers. I mean this isn't Red Dwarf we're talking about here. Patrick Troughton and Jon Pertwee's Doctor Who eras are over, and their Doctors lost to the mists of time. And while it is fitting that we remember and honor them and their tremendous contributions, trying to bring them back via replacement casting just seems utterly pointless to me, as it'll never truly be them or their Doctors on screen, no matter who you get or what you do.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 3:15 a.m. CST

    stegman84 right and wrong in one

    by HornOrSilk

    In general, I agree. However, this is Doctor Who. There can be all kinds of ways to use them to represent their father's Doctors while acknowledging they are not the same. If we could find a way to explain why Doctors are older, fatter, etc, than we can explain why they are not exactly the same. Something is wrong with the time-lines, and earlier Doctors are "mutating" due to Timey-wimey causes, so that the earlier the Doctor, the more the Doctor has changed from his true self. Done.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 5:09 a.m. CST

    In other words

    by HornOrSilk

    The show can allow Big Finish to take the lead and have "alternative Doctors" show up to represent the dead.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 6:30 a.m. CST

    Having seen AoD now... I admit, that

    by wtriker1701

    some of those early production values haven't been bad at all. Storywise I get the feeling, a 4-parter would have been more than enough. That's the general sentiment I have with Old Who. There's so much filler material that it borders boredom. Sometimes I was reminded that The Avengers existed before that, and they had found a way of americanizing things that their production values (especially since the Diana Rigg years) had a far wider appeal to (at least) me. That's why I'm all in NuWho since 2005 and have some hard time with older incarnations, no matter how good the story (especially Genesis of the Daleks). For me it's interesting that those production values had their charme while being produced b/w (Hartnell, Troughton). Even we here in Germany had a scifi series called Raumpatrouille (Orion), completely in b/w and they had some movie quality. I guess, it all comes back to the difference between filming on film and on video. The mixture isn't something that meets my eye with pleasure - and takes me on and of the stories. Overall better pacing with AoD would have made this a creepy, actiony episode. Again, concerning me. BTW I LOVED the Rorygram! And I'm curious as well, how The Doctor 11 could have been erased even from the memories of all his enemies. That's also something I crav for an explanation (besides Oswin's Dalek intervention...). Because, whenever a certain blue box arrives in time and space... there he's again. Could such adventure be erased afterwards... again...?

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 7:09 a.m. CST

    Because no matter what you do, it's not them.

    by Stegman84

    I don't love Jon Pertwee and Patrick Troughton's Doctors because they were the third and second Doctor incarnations, I love them specifically because of what Jon and Patrick themselves brought to those roles. You take them out of the equation and I just don't see the point. I mean you can call an apple an orange, even dip it in food dye to change the colour, but it's still going to taste like an apple, and it'll never taste like an orange. I mean, hey, if some fans want that, that's cool, I'm not here to try and convince them otherwise, I just don't see the point myself.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 7:36 a.m. CST

    If they are going to do a 50th anniversary show...

    by ProfWimsey

    .... then they really should have people playing the former Doctors as particular variants on those characters. Actors that happen to look a lot like those prior actors would help immensely! And it really would require less supsension of disbelief than the 5 Doctors or 2 Doctors did.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 9:26 a.m. CST

    I don't understand your logic

    by Stegman84

    I don't understand why those specific Doctors would be needed at all, nor do I understand even remotely how getting other actors to play Pertwee and Troughton's Doctors would require less suspension of disbelief than The Five Doctors and the Two Doctors stories did. No disrespect intended, but that just seems like crazy talk to me. I just don't get it at all. I mean sure, there's the whole Hurndall thing in Five Doctors, but that happened at a time long before re-runs of the Hartnell era show started happening (other than very rare showing of An Unearthly Child in The Five Faces of Doctor Who re-run special event), and even longer before the old episodes started to become available to watch as fans please via VHS releases. So most audiences at the time weren't familiar with Hartnell at all, unless they had seen him briefly in the 10th anniversary special ten years earlier, or they were actually old enough to be around almost twenty years prior for Hartnell's era as it originally aired. Back then most people only really knew Hartnell's Doctor from the Target novelisations, and a handful of stills and artwork pieces that were frequently re-used as visual touchstones when talking about his Doctor, so the recasting wasn't quite so jarring as it would be now, when people very much know Pertwee and Troughton, and can view their Doctors adventures any time at their leisure. Plus, how recasting one person back then would even remotely require less suspension of disbelief than recasting two (or three if you are recasting Hartnell again as well) kind of makes my head hurt... As for The Two Doctors, which had The Doctor and Jamie clearly older than last time we saw them, I honestly don't see how that show requires a bigger suspension of disbelief than replacing Troughton and Pertwee with different actors pretending to be Troughton and Pertwee would. I just don't get it. I mean I get that there are people who like the idea of recasting the old Doctors, I disagree personally, for reasons as already stated, but I can still appreciate that difference of opinion, and respect that view. But how that would or even could be somehow instantly better than The Five Doctors and/or The Two Doctors, that really boggles my mind.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 10:35 a.m. CST

    stegman I think you're overthinking it a bit

    by Rebel Scumb

    It's just a nice way to pay homage to the shows roots, and who better than the sons of those actors, who also happen to look like them and be professional actors? I would think it would be a great way for each to show tribute to their dads. No one is talking about going in and replacing troughton or pertwee in old episodes or anything fans would just like to see something big done for the anniversary, multidoctor stories have been done before, and at this point its not possible to have jon pertwee or patrick troughton as the original actors. For a lot fans it would be nice to have the 50th acknowledge all 11 doctors in some way, and of the options available to showcase those classic but sadly deceased doctors in an interesting memorable way without resorting to a clipshow (shudder) using other actors makes the most sense. There's nothing heavy or serious about any of it, it would just be a nice tip of the hat. Acknowledging two performers in a nice way and the incredible contribution they made to the franchise

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 12:28 p.m. CST

    Donna's grand-dad Alf & Brian = The new Jago & Litefoot?

    by obijuanmartinez

    Loved both of these characters, Brian especially, and would love to have seen the bonus scene shot in live-action!

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 1:23 p.m. CST

    I'm not overthinking it, I just utterly fail to see the point

    by Walton Goggins Giant Breasts

    I just don't see any real reason for it to happen, or any stories that would be so important to be told on screen that they would require bringing back and then replacing those actors in the role. I mean Doctor Who isn't like James Bond or any other character really, each incarnation of The Doctor is very much the actor who played the role. Take the actor away from any given Doctor incarnation and I just don't see there being anything left. Unlike almost any other role, this isn't a case where an actor plays the character, instead each version of the character is 100% the actor that played him. So without that actor, what's the point? And quite apart from being a tribute to them, I actually find it a bit disrespectful, to be honest. Plus which, there are already eight Who actors still alive and kicking about, most of whom could be persuaded to return if wanted and asked. So the question remains, how many Doctors do you really need to celebrate any given anniversary special(s) with? And wouldn't it be better to focus on real former Doctors than ringers? I can't see them doing any story where they needed or used all eleven Doctors, so if you are going the multiple Doctor route, then why not just select from the ones that we still have, while we still have them. Add to which, Sean Pertwee has stated on many occasions that he wouldn't play his father as The Doctor even if asked as he finds the idea rather distasteful, and nor does he want to play The Doctor himself, because he feels that his father was too big of an act to follow in the role, but he'd rather like to have a guest role on the show some day. And David Troughton has in the past on many occasions refused to contribute any part to the Troughton era DVD releases when asked, so I don't know if there's still some baggage there, though more recently he has agreed to play the second Doctor on audio, so who knows which way he'd swing if asked. Personally while there is definitely a family resemblance, I don't think he looks a great deal like Patrick anyhow, though his brother Michael looks a bit closer. I also think you can get away with replacement actors in the audios more easily, as they just have to sound convincing, but visually, personally, I find it far harder (and to my mind, pretty much impossible) to convincingly replace beloved actors long since gone in their title roles, as one glance and you can see, instantly, that it isn't Jon, Patrick or Bill. I do, however, think you could get away with getting someone to play a much younger version of William Hartnell's Doctor, as we really have no idea how long his incarnation lasted, given that he was already an old man when we first saw him. That I wouldn't be against, if there was a worthy story there to tell. To each their own though.

  • Anyway, I think you could pay tribute to Jon, Patrick and William's mammoth contributions in any number of other ways, without the need to resort to the "actor's nightmare" and replace them on screen. Again, just my perspective, and just one of those things we'll never agree on I suppose. Speaking of Jon and Patrick's sons, what I would like to see is David Troughton return as an elderly King of Peladon, and maybe get Sean Pertwee to play a new UNIT military commander (a kind of latter day Brig or Mike Yates, if you will), that kind of role that would suit him quite well I think. Plus I'd love to see them build up a bit of a modern UNIT family for the show, that could be drawn on as required for suitable earth-bound stories. We already have the Brig's daughter, Kate Stewart, so that's a start.

  • There hadn't been much discussion about this since the article appeared Wednesday and I posted Thursday about it. Needless to say, there are spoilers there, and interesting facts about Clara: (SPOILERS involved in my speculation) So, we see that Clara apparently isn't the same as Oswin. The Clara here apparently isn't the same Clara we get in the Christmas episode either, since according to the article she doesn't know what the TARDIS is. The Doctor keeps meeting her across time and space. I don't see this meaning that it's just a bunch of relatives in the same extended family line that the Doctor keeps bumping into (the Dodo solution). It also means most likely that Oswin isn't a Dalek virus loaded into a meat puppet. (From the small description we're given of the story, if there's an Oswin that's a virus, that's the thing the Doctor's fighting in this episode, though given the description *something lurking in the wifi* I was thinking it might be the Wire returning with a slightly different mudus operandi). No, Moffat's wanting to hang some mystery on this, and there should be some timey wimeyness (or at least shenanigans) involved. I think that the Claras and Oswin are all aspects or fragments of the same person, scattered through time and space. We've seen this before - Scaroth, last of the Jageroth, in City of Death. I'm not saying it's exactly like that; the different fragments of Clara/Oswin might not be able to communicate through time with each other. It might be though that the Doctor realizes after meeting a few that he has to try to reunite all the soul shards he can. That gives him a definite companion arc that can be picked up or discarded as needed.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 2:51 p.m. CST

    Entirely possible...

    by Stegman84

    Though I can't shake the feeling that Oswin and Asylum of the Daleks is the end of the story, rather like River and Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead. Moffat does tend to repeat himself with variations on a theme. We'll see, I guess. Regardless, I'm already in Who withdrawal. Is it Christmas yet?

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 3:04 p.m. CST

    not yet, stegman84

    by DoctorTom

    for now you'll have to try to get by on new Red Dwarf, and shortly new Misfits, to get you to Christmas.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 3:07 p.m. CST

    Just finished The Angel's Kiss by Justin Richards

    by DoctorTom

    it's definitely interesting. It's really a prequel to The Angels Take Manhattan, explaining what River/Melody Malone was doing in 1938 before she ran into Rory. Needless to say, it does involve Weeping Angels at one point, but does have one headscratcher near the end (no spoilers, but if you read it yo'll probably have the same reaction). Yes, it's short (I think about 80 pages), but it was also cheap ($2.99). The About the Author page alone gives you your money's worth.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 3:44 p.m. CST


    by DrMorbius

    When will the new Misfits eps be airing? adva thanks nce.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 4:06 p.m. CST

    Misfits air date

    by Stegman84

    It is rumoured to be sometime in November, but last I heard exactly when hadn't been revealed yet.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 4:38 p.m. CST

    Misfits air date

    by DoctorTom

    should be later this month or early November at the latest. The DVD for it will be out in the UK on December 26, so they'll need to have shown all the episodes before then.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 4:58 p.m. CST

    Misfits is back 28th of October, apparently

    by Stegman84

    just confirmed by producer Matt Strevens on his twitter account a few minutes ago.

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 6:07 p.m. CST

    MultiDoctor story for 50th anniversary guaranteed

    by DoctorTom

    There is one hitch though, it's a 12 part Doctor Who comic series by IDW. It will have interconnected stories with all 11 Doctors. 12 issues, 11 Doctors - hmmmmm, the numbers don't add up. If the first issue starts with the first Doctor, the 2nd with the 2nd Doctor and keeps working up, we might have to start being skeptical of comments about Matt being around after the 50th (though I imagine it will either be 2 issues with Smith, or the last issue involving all the Doctors).

  • Oct. 13, 2012, 10:01 p.m. CST

    DoshMosh on Doctor Who

    by veteran_of_mu

    Dear Docbackers, My startup doshmosh just went live with the world's first free Facebook-integrated global instant democracy. Or less grandly, a game where we can vote for and against the subjects of each others opinions. So now we can finally decide once and for all: The Moff vs RTD - which is really responsible for the success of NuWho? Who was the worst Doctor and why? What's is the best arc? Best episode? For which Doctor? Ever? Sexiest Companion in NuWho? In WhoClassic? In both? Which villain should be brought back next? What's the best format for the show - multi-parters or standalones? Beth Williams or Caro Skinner? And of course ... Was Rory really the Master? DoshMosh can in principle link to the Docbacks too, opening up our discussion here to the rest of all the Whovians on Facebook. I'd love to chat with Glen & Ken about doing something like this both to enlarge the readership here and as a way of socially monetizing and distributing Whotininnies. But really DoshMosh is for all of us, not just a privileged few. And it's very good fun - i hope you will please give the alpha version a go and let me know here or there if any part of your experience sucks. You can search for it on Facebook or just go to -- "caractacuspotts"

  • Oct. 14, 2012, 1:39 a.m. CST


    by percane

    It also means most likely that Oswin isn't a Dalek virus loaded into a meat puppet.

  • Oct. 14, 2012, 4:23 p.m. CST

    on the IDW comic series...

    by Stegman84

    I would imagine that the final issue would either be just the current Doctor, or, more likely, involve all of them in some capacity (converging timelines or something). I doubt, even if Matt Smith were leaving, that they would share that information with licensees, particularly so far out. Way too much of a chance of the information getting leaked. Of course I've been wrong before, so...

  • Oct. 14, 2012, 6:54 p.m. CST

    @doctortom - Clara/Oswin, The Wire

    by Kathryn Gail

    Something lurking in the wifi that harvests and copies human minds certainly opens up the possibility of. . . a whole lot of Oswins (or fragments) (of Oswin and everyone else) to be replicated, or deleted, or shifted around in time and place. . . Coincidentally (speaking of The Wire), I was just watching The Idiot's Lantern and really enjoying Tennant et al.'s super-nerdy commentary about putting that episode together. It didn't start life as a favorite with most fans (self included), but the exceptional detail really holds up (if you like set/period details)--buying the 1950s wallpaper, contructing the old televisions, removing painted marks from the streets, and all sorts of things (and apparently next season 10 climbs around on that same helipad dressed as the Empire State Building rather than a 1950s antenna). 1952 is such an interesting setting: people feel modern but are gathering for a 'mass media' spectacle not really designed by the media at all (the coronation); they can be alarmist about television rotting the mind, but there's no real history of audience trends at all. Are we in the same place now with Twitter? Sadly we have a long wait to find out what The Doctor thinks. . .

  • Oct. 15, 2012, 8:54 a.m. CST

    Incidental music in Classic Who

    by Meglos

    the more generic sounding, plinky, sometimes inappropriate music which was often laid down over early WHO

  • Oct. 15, 2012, 9 a.m. CST

    slow times here

    by DoctorTom

    definitely lower traffic now that there's not new Who on the air. It looks like the set pics that leaked last week are from the first episode after the Christmas special (given the spoiler information about Clara, that makes sense). We know there's been filming on at least one episode after that. It looks like Moffat's original statement that all of season 7 will be filmed in 2012 is going to be true or mostly true. Hopefully we'll be hearing about commissions for later in 2013 before the 2nd batch of shows (after the Christmas special) start to air.


  • Oct. 15, 2012, 9:42 a.m. CST

    Meanwhile, Starz makes plans for using the Daleks

    by DoctorTom

  • Oct. 15, 2012, 4:48 p.m. CST

    UK almost outs the existance of an actual Torchwood

    by DoctorTom

  • Oct. 15, 2012, 4:54 p.m. CST

    stegman84 & doctortom

    by DrMorbius

    Many thanks kind sirs, I shall be vigilant ...

  • Oct. 15, 2012, 7:40 p.m. CST

    as long as it's a slow docback

    by Kathryn Gail

    Jimmy Savile never really having been on my radar here in the U.S. doesn't make his decades of predation seem any less weighty, but it just can't make me completely dislike this Colin-Baker-era Jim'll Fix It! segment where the kid whose nan made him a Colin Baker costume got to be in a short with the Doctor, Tegan and a couple Sontarans (and presumably lots of other off-camera folk it's still okay to appreciate): I forget which DVD this is an extra on. But then looking back at the same show (also with a DW tie-in) in the 1970s: liarsofthe70s, seriously, look me in the keyboard and tell me you didn't pretty much know not to let your kids get get near this guy. . . As far as on-topic docback stuff goes, though, the best part (especially for viewing on an exceptionally depressing Monday) is at the very end where Sir Patrick Moore threatens a Dalek with having a meteorite rammed up its antenna (never mind how that would actually work from a technical standpoint). Anyone know who was playing the Dalek?

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 1:39 a.m. CST

    Looks like Who fans have gone into hibernation until Christmas...

    by Stegman84

    Given that there's not even any more classic Who dvd releases coming up this year either (apart from the Axons re-release) I suppose I can't blame them either. Really wish we'd get some kind of news in relation to some of the plans for the Whoverse next year though. Just a snippet, a hint...something at least.

  • until the Christmas Special. We'll get a brief trailer of Series 7b, and a promise that the doctor will be back in 2013. They will studiously avoid mentioning how they fucked over the 50th anniversary. And my guess is that they still won't confirm when series 7b will air. They will want to stave off annoucing the bad news as long as humanly possible.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 4:47 a.m. CST

    Filming in Victoria today...

    by dj_bollocks

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 6:05 a.m. CST

    V'shael, I wish I could say that I thought you was wrong

    by Stegman84

    Unfortunately, as I have posted before, I suspect that is pretty much exactly the way things will ultimately play out. I think we'll get a telemovie or two part special or something along those lines next November as a token 50th anniversay celebration, in addition to the second half of this series episodes airing next year, but other than the traditional Christmas special, that's pretty much all the extra who I imagine will be shot for next year, once the current series has wrapped. I also have a nasty gut feeling, based on nothing at all I hasten to add, that the 8 remaining episodes that were delayed until next year will themselves be split into two blocks of four. So we'll have four episodes during the first few months, the other four a few months later, then a special for November, then the Christmas episode to wrap up the year. They can, then, claim that we had Doctor Who on our screens all the way through the anniversary year, just as was promised. And all it cost them to do so was delaying two thirds of this years episodes, and making a couple of new episodes or a tv movie type special, rather than a whole 2013 series as we would ordinarily expect from any given year. I hope we're both wrong, I truly hope I'm way off base here and that we do get plenty of new Who beyond what was simply lifted out of this year, but it is hard not to be cynical at this point in time.

  • Anyone been to this? also: Audio play "Cobwebs" with D5, Tegan, Turlough, Nyssa (and for once I caught it at the start, before the first episodes start being taken down!)

  • The BBC iPlayer allows the radio broadcasts to be received all over the world. So American viewers, can also get this episode of Doctor Who (featuring Peter Davison) Tegan, Turlough and the Doctor, meet up again with ex companion Nyssa.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 11:14 a.m. CST

    gotilk - in case you're reading

    by DoctorTom

    weren't you the one I was talking about Ready Player One with last year? I have another book recommendation for you, even though I haven't finished the book yet. Year Zero: A Novel by Robert Reid (creator of Rhapsody on the computer) The blurb for this is: An alien advance party was suddenly nosing around my planet. Worse, they were lawyering up. . . . It's dealing with a midlevel corporate lawyer who gets approached by some aliens. It turns out that music in the rest of the universe sucks, but they became addicted to Earth music after discovering it (their first exposure was a broadcast of Welcome Back Kotter, and the theme song got them looking for more more). As a result of intergalactic piracy of songs, and our copyright laws, it turns out that the universe owes the Earth more money than exists in the universe. Some aliens are thinking that destroying the Earth might solve the problem of having to pay up... This has a definite Douglas Adams feel to it. Given his creation of Rhapsody, Reid certainly knows enough about piracy litigation and corporate lawyers to be able to spoof them properly.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 11:18 a.m. CST

    stegman84- there's still a chance for new Who

    by DoctorTom

    don't we usually have the Children in Need telethon in November? There's usually some Doctor Who stuff with it, and so far Moffat's given us stuff that isn't merely a peek at the first couple minutes of the Christmas special (when he did a Christmas preview, they also had the separate sketch with the Doctor auctioning off his clothes). Time/Space came from this. I wouldn't be surprised to see something for it this year also.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 11:25 a.m. CST

    slightly OT - John Barrowman

    by DoctorTom

    Barrowman will be appearing in Arrow on a regular basis, but they haven't said who he is yet. They're borrowing from all over the DC Universe. There's an old, lame Justice League villain who called himself The Lord of Time (eventually called Epoch). I doubt they'll use him, but I'd find it hilarious if it turns out that this is who Barrowman is, and that there's a Doctor Who in-joke buried in the series.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 3:50 p.m. CST

    Children In Need?

    by V'Shael

    It's possible we'll get something then, true.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 4 p.m. CST


    by ByTor

    Hey guys, sorry I've been away, work and life and all that. Anyway...I agree with stegman with respect to recasting old Doctors. I know why they did it in The Five Doctors -- he was the only missing one, etc. -- but it's not my first choice, and I sincerely hope they don't do it again. In any case, with the number now turned up to 11, it would end up being a goofy pantomime. No way would we get an enjoyable, coherent storyline out of that. At best, I think we would get an appearance by one or two others, tops -- maybe Davison and Tennant. Tennant, I would think, would be a lock; I only chose Davison because he at least sort of resembles his younger self, as opposed to, say, Colin or Tom. As for those convinced that they've screwed up the anniversary...I still remain cautiously optimistic. We KNOW we're getting the rest of S7 (and no, I don't think there's even a remote chance they split it into two blocks of 4). We can be reasonably certain that we'll get the first half of S8 in the fall (because there's no reason to think otherwise -- the delay THIS year was to accommodate the move of the production team to new facilities, plus the Olympics, etc.). Now, will we get anything else? We can't be sure. My sources are still convinced we're getting a special or two in the summer, but no confirmation on that. The first half of S8 might end up being 2 or 3 long specials instead of 4-6 regular episodes. Not sure yet. In my mind, the important thing is we get something from a story perspective that ties in. I don't care if we get specials (though I'll certainly greedily lap up any extra Who that we do get), but I do want *something*. And while I have my criticisms of Moffat, I'm convinced he'll do something. In fact, I'm hearing we'll get hints and clues in the second half of S7 that will lay the foundation for the anniversary.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 4:01 p.m. CST

    Children in Need

    by ByTor

    I do think RTD raised our expectations a bit high with two (count 'em!) CIN minisodes. Not sure we'll get that again, but maybe we'll at least get a trailer for Christmas.

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 5:23 p.m. CST

    More pics from today's shoot in London...

    by dj_bollocks

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 7:13 p.m. CST

    Glad to see Smith in a different jacket....

    by ProfWimsey

    I prefer "styles" to "costumes" for the Doctor. Also, it's a cool jacket. Clara (?) seems to be in a fairly modern outfit. It's possible that the Victorian lady was quick to adapt (a la Victoria for the 2nd Doctor) or that Clara actually is from a different time in the XMas special. Or maybe it's a Timey Wimey thing....

  • Oct. 16, 2012, 11:28 p.m. CST

    jackets. . . right I get the whole branding thing, but--

    by Kathryn Gail

    I like to think all the companions' outfit changes aren't just by way of sending him a message about hygiene, that the 50th won't be a clip show built around his millennial side trip to Planet Dryclean. . . And it's a very cool jacket. Or frock coat, really, I guess.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 1:31 a.m. CST

    @bytor - Season 8?

    by V'Shael

    I'm just curious - how can you be so certain that we're getting a season 8 in 2013, when no season has been commissioned yet by the BBC? If you've read The Writers Tale, you should have some idea of exactly how much lead time you need to get an episode on the air.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 8:45 a.m. CST

    The Writer's Tale, 1st vs. 2nd ed., @v'shael or anyone

    by Kathryn Gail

    I meant to read this, then lost track, then there were two editions and the second had more material but fewer draft script excerpts and I meant to find out which was 'better', then lost track. Is the first edition worth tracking down? Or are the drafts not appearing in the second edition really not such a loss, and all the extra material is far more interesting? (And I'm cheerfully mooning readers who are already off on a rant-to-self about people who don't read! I read all day at work and have an exemption; if you feel that's a poor argument, please fit into your reading schedule this pair of richly larded essays on not getting out of my chair enough. . . ) (Here's a link for anyone going "? ? ?")

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 8:58 a.m. CST

    patrickstewartsaweverything - A Writer's Tale

    by DoctorTom

    I can't remember how much of the script excerpts were cut to put out the second edition, but frankly I really focused only on the new stuff in the newer edition. There's 200 more pages in the 2nd edition, so I'm not sure that they cut that much. If you haven't read either, I'd go for the second edition with it covering the specials.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 9:47 a.m. CST


    by ByTor

    That's just what I'm hearing from my sources, including one that I trust very, very much. Not sure why the BBC is being coy on commissioning everything, though. It's unusual, I will admit. But...look, the BBC WANTS as much Doctor Who as possible. It makes ass-tons of money. If they could get the production team, actors, etc. to give them twenty-something episodes a year, they'd take it at this point. I just don't see any incentive for them to dick around with it.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 10:18 a.m. CST

    @bytor - Well, that's not what I've heard.

    by V'Shael

    I've heard that pretty much all the money which is made by Doctor Who gets sunk back into the show, trying desperately to avoid the budget cuts being implemented across the entire BBC. As such, the BBC doesn't really care that Doctor Who makes a ton of money. Because they don't see a penny from it.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 10:21 a.m. CST

    @patrickstewartsaweverything - Writers Tale 2nd edition

    by V'Shael

    I only had the 2nd edition, in paperback and PDF form, so I don't know what was cut in terms of draft scripts. I do know that the 2nd edition had a couple of hundred extra pages, taking us up to Matt Smith, and it was totally worth getting and reading.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 10:38 a.m. CST

    V'Shael - fair enough

    by ByTor

    It's Worldwide that really makes the money; the BBC proper only gets license fee money. But the sixth floor is very much aware of Worldwide's income, and they know which shows generate a lot of ancillary income and which shows do not. I do know that at one point late in the RTD years they wanted to expand the number of episodes, but the production team didn't think they could do it and maintain the quality.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 10:51 a.m. CST

    Back 8 episodes (Series 7b - breakdown) Some still shooting.

    by V'Shael

    706 - (Steven Moffat) Directed by Colm McCarthy. (Filming now) 707. (Neil Cross) Directed by Farren Blackburn. (Not filmed) 708. The Cold War (Mark Gatiss) Directed by Douglas Mackinnon. (Filmed) 709. Phantoms of the Hex (Neil Cross) Directed by Jamie Payne. (Filmed) 710. The Hider in the House (Stephen Thompson) Directed by Mat King. (Filmed) 711. The Crimson Horror (Mark Gatiss) Directed by Saul Metzstein. (Filmed) 712. (Neil Gaiman) Directed by Stephen Wolfenden. (Not filmed) 713. (Steven Moffat) Directed by TBA. (Not filmed) This is slightly more info than was available in my post from Sep 25. There are 3 episodes still to film, one is currently shooting near Waterloo/Embankment on the bank of the Thames river. Allowing a modest two weeks per episode, they should wrap filming completely before the end of the year. However when you factor in Post Production work, I think the chances of these back 8 seeing transmission in early 2013 is small. As for Series 8... well, let's bear in mind that A Town Called Mercy shot in March 2012 for transmission in September 2012. They would have to start shooting series 8 almost on the heels of finishing series 7, just to have it ready for broadcast in Autumn 2013. And that would mean the scripts had to be commissioned .. well, a long time ago. Again, think about it. Neil Gaiman was on his third draft for 7x12 when he won his Hugo. How long ago do you think he was given the assignment? With no official commissioning of a series 8, I can't believe the money is there for an 8th series to be written, shot, produced and aired in 2013.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 11:25 a.m. CST

    V'Shael: It's definitely a concern

    by ByTor

    Of course, they may have at least some scripts ready as they often commission more scripts than needed. (Remember that, for example, The Doctor's Wife was originally commissioned for S5.) So it's possible that there are some, especially if they're considering the anniversary stuff as part of S7 (like the specials after S4). But, yeah, you'd think that something would have to get rolling very, very soon.

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 4:33 p.m. CST

    HAT #8

    by veteran_of_mu

    Let's imagine you're the Moff. You can see 2013 coming from a long way off. You appreciate the significance. You know you only get one crack at it. And you want to go out in a blaze of glory. So you start writing. Hard. Sure, you still have to put in 2 or 3 episodes in S7. And there's all that promotional and managerial stuff to get through. But you can back off on that a bit if you get a Dalek Prime Minister to take the reins. Obviously you want to save all your best continuity episodes for the 2013 eschaton. And you want to enroll the current generation of kiddies by throwing in a few Chibnallian follow-the-bouncing-ball monster-of-the-week pablum. You want those kids on board so they'll be ready to have their little minds thoroughly blown ... Meanwhile you put out feelers. The Beeb wants as much DW as it can get, but it's not willing or able to put up the production facilities of a WETA. You know PJ is an immense Whovian, has dinner parties with ex-Doctors and so on. And you can get big bucks into funding DW via your Hollywood Tintin crew if the Beeb will authorise a circa 2015 DW movie to follow on the heels of a WETA 50th ... So you take all your hard continuity S8 stuff and hand it off to PJ. And he asks and you agree to loan him your Sherlock stars for a couple of short films he happens to be making about some guy with hairy feet. Because while they're filming that they can also do a little mo-cap for a couple of the most viciously delightful villains you've dreamed up for the S8 blowout ... And all the fanboys on all the forums sit and scratch their bums wondering when the Beeb will commission the S8 episodes they think they want. Never knowing that what's coming down the pike, what you're really plannning, is the elevation of the Doctor from British cultural touchstone to world cultural touchstone. You're aiming to be the next George Lucas. But this time ... this time you're going to do it right!

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 5:41 p.m. CST


    by ByTor

    I don't buy it for a minute, but I have to tell you, that HAT is a thing of beauty. BEAUTY!

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 5:45 p.m. CST

    That's the first HAT I wish was true.

    by V'Shael

  • Oct. 17, 2012, 11:01 p.m. CST

    Writer's Tale 2nd ed. it is, then

    by Kathryn Gail

    Ordered. Thanks for the feedback! True tale: I called my nearest used bookstore first, and they argued with me about whether I was sure it was 'T-A-L-E' when it should be 'T-A-I-L.' Um. It's one of those used bookstores with more cats than people, and now I'm wondering whether the cats got hold of some Stephen Hawking speech equipment. I should go check up on its humans tomorrow, maybe. . . ALSO: outstanding HAT. Outstanding.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 9:26 a.m. CST

    That's the type of HAT that NEEDS to be true!

    by DoctorTom

    I salute you, Caractuspotts, for a HAT that demands to happen just because of the coolness of it.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 9:26 a.m. CST

    SPOILERS about an upcoming S7 episode

    by ByTor is confirming the rumor (as posted above by V'Shael) that Gaiman's episode will indeed be episode 12 (not counting the Xmas special) of S7. I cannot WAIT.

  • to see Jackson mention Doctor Who in a commentary or an extra on a DVD (especially if talking with Sylvester McCoy). It would be really cool though if they had assembled a TARDIS prop, showed McCoy coming out dressed as the Seventh Doctor, followed by Cumberbatch and Freeman as Sherlock and Watson, with the Doctor saying, Now, Sherlock, according to the TARDIS scanners *this is supposed to be some time referred to as Middle Earth. I don't think I've been here before...*

  • Maybe some cat people from New New New New New New New New New New New New New New New New Yark got thrown back through a time rift and ended up running the used book shop.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 11:43 a.m. CST

    Shada DVD release date for US

    by DoctorTom

    tvshowsondvd announced that Shada will be released January 8, 2013 In addition to what's been filmed for Shada and the special More than 30 Years In the TARDIS, it will have the following extras: Shada - Flash version Taken Out of Time Now and Then Strike! Strike! Strike! Being a Girl Women in Doctor Who Remembering Nicholas Courtney Doctor Who Stories - Peter Purves The Lambert Tapes - Part 1 (about founding producer Verity Lambert) Those Deadly Divas Photo Galleries Easter Egg PDF materials: Radio Times Listings Production Note Subtitles Taken from:

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 2:57 p.m. CST

    Season 7b not airing until at least May of 2013?

    by V'Shael

    The toylines have tweeted that their toys from season 7b are held back until May of next year, because the BBC have told them they can't do anything with them before transmission of the episodes.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 3:31 p.m. CST

    Could still be April, though

    by DoctorTom

    they might not be releasing at the beginning of the season, but still release while it's being broadcast. There will be 8 weeks, and we don't know if the toys are tying in with stories from later in the season. Easter is March 31, so if the show started the Saturday of Easter weekend they'd still be broadcasting new episodes in the first part of May.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 3:32 p.m. CST

    the other thing to take from that tweet, though

    by DoctorTom

    they aren't planning on holding the Season 7b episodes for the fall, which some people were speculating would happen.

  • Oct. 18, 2012, 6:29 p.m. CST

    @doctortom it's the sort of place that could well conceal a rift

    by Kathryn Gail

    Or perhaps this is where the evolution of Catkind really begins, perhaps BECAUSE OF a visit from the Sisters of Plenitude from the future, in a big timey-wimey loop of some sort. . . (We just keep uncannily coming back to these Planet of the Apes themes. . . ) Love the Shada audio cd, psyched for the DVD!

  • Oct. 19, 2012, 1:34 a.m. CST

    @doctortom - True, but then, it puts the lie to the idea

    by V'Shael

    that show was moved to Autumn so the evenings could be dark.

  • Oct. 19, 2012, 8:53 a.m. CST

    pretty much, v'shael

    by DoctorTom

    though it wouldn't have surprised me that Moffat's intention was originally to have either the first batch show later in the autumn, or the last batch start earlier (Jan or Feb). I think that the BBC execs were going to let the show start at the end of October or early November, though, since they'd want the DVD sales for Christmas. I think if he wanted the second batch starting earlier, though, he'd have had the production schedule set up to have filmed earlier in order to accomodate it.