Graham Strong 1949- 2018Bookmark and Share

Friday, 18 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Mark Ayres and Graham Strong (Credit: Stephen Cranford)Graham Strong, the man responsible for the survival of many high-quality audio recordings of missing Doctor Who episodes, has died at the age of 69.

Graham Strong was a 14-year-old schoolboy when Doctor Who began in 1963. A keen electronics student, his hobby included building valve and transistor radios, as well as repairing televisions for neighbours. He was the proud owner of a second-hand Reel to reel tape machine and decided to use this to preserve the audio of this exciting new serial.

I can’t recall if I actually recorded the first episode of Doctor Who. The earliest recording I still have was the first episode of The Keys of Marinus first shown on 11 April 1964. Recordings were made via a basic crystal microphone (which came with the machine), hanging over the television speaker with a plant pot placed on the top of the T.V. to keep the microphone in place! Mother was given instructions to not enter the room when ‘recording was in session’
Following The Daleks' Master Plan, episode 7, Strong, used his electronics knowledge to wire the audio output from the television into the Tape recorder. A highly dangerous procedure that breaks every rule of electrical safety but one that resulted in recordings that were crystal clear.

Strong was one of a small number of early fans who recorded audio from the now missing stories. However, he is believed to be the only one to record directly from the Television, resulting in the superior quality of his recordings.

In 1994 an accidental meeting with a Doctor Who fan who had contacts in the BBC brought his collection to the attention of the corporation. By this time the master tapes of most early episodes had been junked and the episodes were either missing or only existed as film prints. After reassurance that his tapes would be carefully cared for, Strong handed over recordings containing over 100 Doctor Who episodes.

Strong's recordings have been used for the animated releases of missing episodes such as Power of the Daleks. His recordings are so clear that they often exceed the quality available on the surviving film prints of the episodes, and as a result, a number of DVD's of early episodes contain audio taken from Strong's recordings rather than the film print.




NERVA event: Frank Bellamy inspired posters for saleBookmark and Share

Thursday, 17 May 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Nerva: 30 Jun 2018 (Credit: The Hub)NERVA is a special event organised by the Ark in Space Facebook group celebrating the visual effects and other designers who brought Doctor Who to our screens.

Current guests include visual effects designer Colin Mapson (e.g. The Green Death), sculptor and prop maker Stephen Mansfield (e.g. Battlefield), K9 assistant operator Steve Cambden (e.g. Full Circle), documentary director Kevin Jon Davies (e.g. Thirty Years in the TARDIS), and researchers Richard Bignell (Nothing At The End Of The Lane), Jon Green and Gavin Rymell (Dalek 6388).

Alongside the event, a special poster has been commissioned from artist Ian Wells, inspired by the work of Frank Bellamy. There are three versions of the poster available that can be purchased separately to the event itself: the image with event information as displayed, one with the addition of Ian's autograph, and a third version with the text replaced with a personalised message from the artist. Full details can be found via the organisers' website.

All proceeds from the event and posters will be donated to the Thames Valley Air Ambulance.

The event itself is limited to members of the Facebook group, who can register their interest via the relevant thread, and to followers of the @ClassicDrWho Twitter account, who can tweet or send a direct message instead. You can find out mote about the event via the group or the organisers' event page.

With thanks to Simon Meade




Season 12 Blu-Ray delayed by One WeekBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 16 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who Season 12 (Credit: BBC Worldwide)
BBC Worldwide has confirmedthat the Blu-Ray release of Doctor Who: The Collection – Season 12, has been delayed by one week.

The collection of stories featuring Tom Baker in his first season as the Doctor, will now be released on Monday 18th June 2018

Full release details




Canada cinema outing for Genesis of the DaleksBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 16 May 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Cineplex: Genesis of the Daleks (14 Jun 2018) (Credit: Cineplex, BBC Worldwide)Canadian fans will be able to join the US in seeing the "director's cut" of Genesis of the Daleks in Cineplex cinemas on the 14th June.

The Fourth Doctor and his companions Sarah Jane Smith (Elisabeth Sladen) and Harry Sullivan (Ian Marter) are transported thousands of years into the past to the ancient planet Skaro where they are given a mission from the Time Lords to prevent the evil scientist Davros from introducing to the universe the most destructive race of killing machines ever created, the Daleks. This never-before-seen 90-minute director’s cut will be followed by a first look at “In Conversation with Tom Baker” - a newly recorded interview with the Fourth Doctor himself!

For full details on where the story can be seen see the Cineplex website.





Big Finish - Eighth Doctor Special OfferBookmark and Share

Saturday, 12 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Blood of the Daleks (Credit: Big Finish / Alex Mallinson)This weekend Big Finish are offering 50% off many titles featuring the Eighth Doctor played by Paul McGann, from the beginning of his travels with Charlotte Pollard back in 2001 to the epic four-part saga, Doom Coalition.

Until 23:59 UK Time on the 17th of May 2018, you can save 50% on the Eighth Doctor Adventures releases, Eighth Doctor stories in the Doctor Who Main Range and the award-winning Dark Eyes and Doom Coalition box sets.

The Eighth Doctor Adventures, which were first broadcast on BBC Radio 7 on New Year’s Eve 2006, are a great jumping on point for new listeners as Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor starts another phase of his adventures with a brand new companion played by Sheridan Smith, Lucie Miller.

Starting after the Eighth Doctor Main Range tales, it's a brand new set of adventures with several returning villains and all-star casts. These adventures start with an Eighth Doctor encounter with the Daleks in Blood of the Daleks, which stars Hayley Atwell and Anita Dobson in a truly terrifying introduction into the world of the Eighth Doctor.

Doctor Who: Dark Eyes (Winner, Best Online Drama, BBC Drama Awards 2014) was written and directed by Nicholas Briggs.
The Eighth Doctor is a man dealing with loss and hunting for new meaning in his life. He is looking for hope. But instead, he finds himself on a mission.

The Time Lords have uncovered terrifying fragments of an insane plot to destroy the universe. And somehow, at the centre of that plot is one, random female in Earth’s history, Molly O’Sullivan.
And after the apocalyptic events of Doctor Who: Dark Eyes, the Eighth Doctor and Liv Chenka (played by Nicola Walker) continue their adventures in space and time in Doctor Who: Doom Coalition.
An ancient danger is stirring under the citadel of Gallifrey. The Eleven - a insane Time Lord who has retained his previous personalities - has escaped, and the Time Lords are powerless to stop him. Now the Doctor, Liv and their new friend Helen Sinclair are the universe's only chance of survival.
Also in this offer are bundles on the Eighth Doctor’s adventures in the Doctor Who Main Range, with companions Charlotte Pollard, C'Rizz played by Conrad Westmaas and Mary Shelley, the gothic author, played by Julie Cox.

To redeem the offer, enter code EIGHT50 at the checkout on the Big Finish website.

This offer expires at 23:59 UK Time on the 17th of May 2018.




New Thirteenth Doctor FictionBookmark and Share

Thursday, 10 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
 Thirteen Doctors (Credit: Penguin Random House)Borrowed Time (Credit: Penguin Random House)The Triple Knife (Credit: Penguin Random House)New works by Naomi Alderman and Juno Dawson are among some of the 2018 offerings for the Doctor Who list, publishing to celebrate the arrival of Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor.

Penguin Random House Children’s imprint BBC Children’s Books have today announced its acquisition of a brand-new Doctor Who short story from Alderman, author of The Power and winner of the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2017. Alderman’s tale features Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor battling to save the universe alongside her close and trusted friends.

The story will add to the existing 12 Doctors, 12 Stories anthology, which recounts tales for each of the previous twelve Doctors as they adventure through time and space. The new collection will publish on 1 November 2018 as Thirteen Doctors, 13 Stories, and will also include existing stories by Eoin Colfer, Michael Scott, Marcus Sedgwick, Philip Reeve, Patrick Ness, Richelle Mead, Malorie Blackman, Alex Scarrow, Charlie Higson, Derek Landy, Neil Gaiman and Holly Black.

Thirteen Doctors, 13 Stories marks Alderman’s return to the Doctor Who universe, after her 2011 novel, Borrowed Time, published by BBC Books. On 19 July, to celebrate the opening of this year’s San Diego ComicCon, BBC Books will reissue a new paperback edition of this novel, along with a new edition of collected Doctor Who stories by Jenny T. Colgan, The Triple Knife. Both will have new cover designs by artist David Wardle.

Multi-award winning author and activist Juno Dawson’s novel will mark her debut on the Doctor Who list. Entitled The Good Doctor, it will be one of the first novels on the BBC Books list to feature the Thirteenth Doctor, as played by Jodie Whittaker, and her friends Yasmin, Ryan and Graham. The book will publish in October along with two other Thirteenth Doctor adventures, The Molten Heart, by New York Times bestselling author Una McCormack and Combat Magicks, by bestselling Young Bond author Steve Cole.

Naomi Alderman says
I'm thrilled beyond words to be writing the first short story for the Thirteenth Doctor. Believe it or not, my first ever rejection letter, dated 1992, was from Doctor Who Magazine for a story I wrote as a teenager obsessed with the Doctor; I've loved Doctor Who since I was a child, so it's particularly meaningful and exciting for me to be adding my name to this anthology.
Juno Dawson says
My earliest memory is Bonnie Langford being spun off into space in a killer bubble in 1987, so you can only imagine how excited I was when I was asked to write for the Doctor Who range. And, as a Bradford girl, it’s an even bigger thrill to be among the first writers in the world to write for Jodie Whittaker, the first Doctor from Yorkshire. This feels like a bold new era for Doctor Who and I'm beyond delighted to be a part of it. This is a dream come true.
Ruth Knowles, Publisher at Penguin Random House Children’s, says
Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor deserves ground-breaking writing from a ground-breaking author, and we are thrilled to have someone so perfect in Naomi to bring the first female Doctor to the page. She has stunned the world with her characters, writing and ideas, and as a huge Doctor Who fan (and previous Doctor Who book writer) she was our first choice to write the Thirteenth Doctor story for this collection. This story will be, we are sure, brilliant, and the prefect addition to this stellar collection by the very best of authors.
Albert DePetrillo, BBC Books Publishing Director, says
The excitement that’s building around the new series of Doctor Who is remarkable, and Jodie Whittaker is helping usher in a whole new era of vibrant, inclusive storytelling. We’re thrilled to be a part of that with our publishing, and authors like Naomi and Juno, Jenny, Una and Steve are the perfect ambassadors for this next chapter in the Doctor Who story. We can’t wait for them to introduce a whole new generation of fans to the wonders of the Whoniverse.




Knock Knock Script Up for AuctionBookmark and Share

Monday, 7 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Knock Knock - Script (Credit: DWAS)
The Doctor Who Appreciation Society is holding an online auction for charity with a signed script from the last series of Doctor Who up for sale.

The original copy of Mike Bartlett’s script for ‘Knock Knock’ signed by Peter Capaldi, David Suchet, Pearl Mackie and Mike himself is one of 17 objects being sold to raise money for Denville Hall, the actors’s charity supported by Lalla Ward and the Muswell Hill Syrian Refugees Relief Project supported by Peter and Elaine Capaldi.

Other items include Big Finish scripts signed by cast members including Alex Kingston and David Bradley.

The online auction followes a succesful event at the DWAS Convention, The Capitol, which raised £3,887.00 for charities. Over the past 3 years the society has raised £9,182.00 for noble causes.

Full details of the auction can be dound at the auction webside.




Original Unearthly Child Script Up for Auction: UpdateBookmark and Share

Friday, 4 May 2018 - Reported by Chuck Foster
An Unearthly Child - ScriptWilliam Hartnell's annotated copy of the script of the very first episode, An Unearthly Child, was sold yesterday for £6,200.

The script was an item in the Aston's Auctioneers and Valuers Film & Music Memorabilia & Comics Auction.

Including fees, the grand total for owning this unique item of Doctor Who history came to to £7,500.





Big Finish: Energy of the Daleks - On VinylBookmark and Share

Friday, 4 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Energy of the Daleks (Credit: Big Finish)Energy of the Daleks (Credit: Big Finish)In an exclusive deal with Sainsbury's supermarket, Doctor Who: Energy of the Daleks, produced by Big Finish Productions, will be available for the first time on vinyl record.

From the 25th May, Sainsbury’s will be stocking a strictly limited pressing of ‘Energy Of the Daleks’ on blue 180GM Heavyweight Vinyl. This will be available in participating stores only, limited to 1,500 units.

A spokesperson from Sainsbury's said
We’re really excited to be stocking something as iconic as the Doctor in our stores, so to have “Energy of The Daleks” on a limited run on blue vinyl is a massive treat for us.
The Daleks take on Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor in this Doctor Who full-cast audio drama from 2012, which takes place between The Talons of Weng-Chiang and Horror of Fang Rock, both broadcast on BBC One in 1977.

The Fourth Doctor Tom Baker and his companion Leela, played by Louise Jameson, find themselves in the middle of London at the time of a new energy crisis. The GlobeSphere Corporation seems to have all the answers – but several thousand protesters beg to differ.

The Doctor has detected a mysterious energy reading. Could it be that the most evil creatures in the universe have returned to claim ultimate victory once and for all?

For Baker, Energy of the Daleks was the first time since 1979's Destiny of the Daleks that he'd gone hat-brim to eyestalk with the Daleks - but for Jameson, it's a first. This is Leela's opening encounter with the Daleks, and she's not going to find it a pleasant experience. And speaking of unpleasant experiences, she's not quite ready for the 21st century either. But then, is the 21st century ready for Leela?

Executive Producer and Director of Energy of the Daleks, Nicholas Briggs said
We’ve been delighted by the response to our ongoing range of Fourth Doctor stories. We have such an exciting and rewarding time making them, and we’re just thrilled that'll we'll be reaching a brand new audience for vinyl through our friends at Sainsbury's.
Guest stars include: Mark Benton (TV Doctor Who story Rose, Waterloo Road, Land Girls, The Street, Northern Lights, Strictly Come Dancing), Alex Lowe (The Late Edition, The Thick of It, Lead Balloon and Peep Show), TV Sontaran Dan Starkey, giving life to both Kevin Winston and a Roboman and Nicholas Briggs as The Daleks.

Series one to seven, which star Tom Baker are available to buy now from the Big Finish website.




Doctor Who Magazine Issue 525Bookmark and Share

Thursday, 3 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who Magazine Issue 525 (Credit: Panini)Doctor Who Magazine - Issue 525 looks into those scenes from Doctor Who that are Missing in Action

Not everything that’s filmed and recorded for Doctor Who makes it to the screen. The new issue of Doctor Who Magazine reveals details of numerous scenes that have been cut, including major sequences that have been lost forever.

Also in this issue...
  • MICHELLE RYAN
  • An exclusive interview with Michelle about the return of glamorous cat burglar Lady Christina.
  • WILL OSWALD
  • Editor Will Oswald started working on Doctor Who in 2007 and has been responsible for many missing scenes, as well as initiating new material.
  • THE TIME TEAM
  • The Time Team has regenerated – just in time to revisit landmark episodes from the series’ history.
  • OUT OF THE TARDIS
  • Janet Fielding, who played air hostess Tegan, answers questions from the TARDIS tin.
  • THE DOCTOR’S SCARF
  • Musician and illustrator Jamie Lenman goes on a cosplay mission to recreate the most iconic item from the Doctor’s wardrobe.
  • NEW FACES
  • Behind the scenes at the launches of the Second, Third and Fourth Doctors.
  • THE FACT OF FICTION
  • Exploring the hidden depths of the 2009 Easter Special Planet of the Dead.
  • THE CLOCKWISE WAR
  • Part three of a new comic strip adventure written by Scott Gray and illustrated by John Ross.
  • PLUS...
  • The Blogs of Doom, news, previews, book and audio reviews, prize-winning competitions and much more
Doctor Who Magazine issue 525 is on sale from Thursday 3 May, price £5.99.
Doctor Who Magazine Issue 525 (Credit: Panini)Doctor Who Magazine Issue 525 (Credit: Panini)Doctor Who Magazine Issue 525 (Credit: Panini)Doctor Who Magazine Issue 525 (Credit: Panini)




River Song versus the Masters for Big FinishBookmark and Share

Thursday, 3 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Derek Jacobi and Alex Kingston
Michelle Gomez
Eric Roberts
River Song will be facing the Masters for Big Finish in the fifth series of The Diary of River Song, released January 2019.

The series will see Michelle Gomez return as Missy and Eric Roberts reprise his portrayal of the Master after a 22 year hiatus. They will join Geoffrey Beevers, who first played the Master in Doctor Who TV episode The Keeper of Traken in 1981 and Derek Jacobi, who played the Master in 2008 episode Utopia and continues at Big Finish

Over the course of four audio series made in arrangement with BBC Studios, River Song, played by Alex Kingston has shone alongside several incarnations of the Doctor, including Paul McGann, Sylvester McCoy, Colin Baker, Peter Davison and upcoming in August, Tom Baker.

Now, in January 2019, River Song will face off against four regenerations of The Master, the mortal enemy of the Doctor, in the fifth series of adventures.
  • The Bekdel Test by Jonathan Morris
  • Animal Instinct by Roy Gill
  • The Lifeboat and the Deathboat by Eddie Robson
  • Concealed Weapon by Scott Handcock
David Richardson, producer, tells all.
It’s a medley of Masters! In previous box sets River has been travelling back through the Doctor’s incarnations. This time around she is meeting some of the Masters – and we have some amazing firsts in this box set! Yes, it’s the first time Eric Roberts has returned to the role since the TV movie in 1996, and the first appearance of Michelle Gomez as Missy in a Big Finish production. With Derek Jacobi as the War Master and Geoffrey Beevers as the decayed Master, it’s an unmissable line-up!
Nicholas Briggs, executive producer
This is something we’ve been so incredibly excited about for so long. It’s been thrilling enough for us to work with Alex for all the River releases, but to put her against the Doctor’s former best friend turned archenemy is not a little mind-blowing. Fantastic that we’re getting an opportunity to work with Michelle again, after her first appearance (at Big Finish) with Sylvester McCoy back in 2007! But somehow strangely incredible that Eric Roberts is back from the 1996 TV movie. It’s frankly ‘clash of the icons’ in a really mind-blowing box set.
Jason Haigh-Ellery, executive producer, talks more about bringing these actors to audio
Working with Eric was a complete joy. Firstly, he is such a nice man and so easy to communicate with. Secondly, he likes to work and he likes to work fast. Scenes whizz by and we are all enjoying yourselves so much that you forget you are directing an Oscar nominee with over 450 movies under his belt (which should be intimidating – but isn’t). He’s very down to earth – no ego or vanity involved. I hope we work together again soon!

Having Michelle Gomez return to Big Finish is wonderful – a lovely lady, who was magnificent as Missy in the past couple of seasons of Doctor Who. I can’t wait for everyone to hear her and Alex Kingston together!
The Diary of River Song: Series 5 is available for pre-order now at £23 on CD or £20 on download.

The Diary of River Song: Series 5 can also be purchased as a bundle with The Diary of River Song: Series 4, to be released in August 2018, at the price of £45 on CD and £40 on download (all CD purchases from the Big Finish website unlock a download exclusive from the Big Finish website and app).




Big Finish - Sixth Doctor Meets the 80s CybermenBookmark and Share

Thursday, 3 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
The Hour of the Cybermen (Credit: Big Finish)Exclusive

Doctor Who News can today reveal that Big Finish are bringing back the 1980s Cybermen in Hour of the Cybermen, a Sixth Doctor tale out this July.

The story, written by Andrew Smith, and starring Colin Baker, sees the return of two 1980s Doctor Who television actors reprising their roles as Cybermen, with David Banks as the Cyber Leader and Mark Hardy as the Cyber Lieutenant.

Answering a call from UNIT, the Doctor arrives in London to find the streets deserted, apart from looters in possession of a valuable commodity – water.

Britain is suffering an extreme and bizarre drought. The cause is suspected to be extra-terrestrial.

The discovery of a signal being transmitted into space, and of a spacecraft whose crew are desiccated corpses, provides a possible answer. But the true enemy is an old foe of the Doctor’s.

The Cybermen have been patient, setting their plans in place over a number of years. As the final stage is implemented, in the darkest hour, the Doctor must identify who among his allies he can trust.
Also in the cast are Frog Stone as Riva, Blake Harrison as Daniel Hopkins, Wayne Forester as Captain Reaver and Russ Bain as Lewis Price.

The release will reveal what has happened to the new UNIT team since the events of the Fifth Doctor and The Helliax Rift and whether they trust this latest regeneration.

You can pre-order Hour of the Cybermen now at £14.99 on CD or £12.99 on download. All CD purchases unlock a download option via the Big Finish app and the Big Finish website.

You can save money by getting a subscription to the Doctor Who Main Range. When you subscribe you'll get 30% off the price, free specially recorded Short Trips stories, PDFs of the scripts, and extended downloadable extras. You can subscribe for either 6 or 12 releases.



Out this month in the Doctor Who Main Range, the Sixth Doctor has a new companion, Mathew Sharpe – space pilot in The Lure of the Nomad.

The Lure of the Nomad (Credit: Big Finish)
For thousands of years, it has drifted through space, unimpeded, forgotten, seemingly lifeless. Now, finally, it has been discovered.

Responding to a distress call from the mysterious hulk, the Doctor and his companion, space pilot Mathew Sharpe, walk into a desperate situation. The multi-tentacled semibionic Makara were tasked with renovating the abandoned craft, but now they’ve begun murdering their employers.

The Doctor soon realises that the Makara have been programmed to kill, but by whom, and for what reason? Finding out the truth will mean uncovering a secret that threatens the entire universe.
And next month, the Sixth Doctor visits the Industrial Revolution in Iron Bright.
Iron Bright (Credit: Big Finish)
It's London, 1828, and the father-and-son team of Marc and Isambard Kingdom Brunel, are masterminding a dangerous project – the digging of the Thames Tunnel. There's just one problem...

The Brunels' tunnel is haunted. Every night, a spectral blue lady walks the excavation.

Now, the 22-year-old Isambard, eager to step out of his famous father's shadow, finds himself dealing with not only the supposed supernatural, but a second unexpected guest – a colourful trespasser who calls himself 'the Doctor'.

Isambard would like to know a great deal more about this strange man and his mysterious blue box...
Thanks to Big Finish




US Movie Theatre Showing for Genesis of the DaleksBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 1 May 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Genesis of the Daleks
Fathom Events, in association with BBC Worldwide, have announced a big screen outing in the United States for the 1975 Tom Baker story Genesis of the Daleks

The screening, on June 11th, is to mark the upcoming Blu-ray release of Tom Baker’s complete first season in Doctor Who.

Audiences will see a special cinema length Director’s cut of the story hailed by fans as an all-time classic. The 90-minute version was first seen by viewers in the UK on Saturday 27 December 1975 but has never been screened outside the country.

The Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker) and his companions, Sarah Jane Smith and Harry Sullivan, are transported thousands of years into the past to the ancient planet Skaro where they are given a mission from the Time Lords to prevent the evil scientist Davros from introducing to the universe the most destructive race of killing machines ever created, the Daleks.

The event also features a first look at In Conversation with Tom Baker a newly recorded interview with the Fourth Doctor himself.

More details on the Fathom Website




Time Shadows e-booksBookmark and Share

Monday, 30 April 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Time Shadows: Anniversary Edition and Time Shadows: Second Nature are now available for a limited time in e-book format (EPUB, MOBI, PDF), with illustrations.

Time Shadows is an unofficial, unauthorized Doctor Who anthology series for charity by Pseudoscope Publishing, with stories by BBC Books, Short Trips and Seasons of War alumni, plus talented newcomers.

All sales proceeds benefit CODE, Canada’s leading international development agency uniquely focused on advancing literacy and education.

To date, sales of the anthology series have raised over CAD $2,700 for charity.

For ordering information and story teasers, visit the Pseudoscope Publishing website or Facebook page.