Cardiff EventBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who fans in Cardiff can meet Daleks and Cybermen this weekend, at a special event held at The Hayes.

Hosted by Jason Mohammad, the BBC newsreader and presenter who's appeared in The Christmas Invasion, Voyage of the Damned, Turn Left and The Stolen Earth, as well as several episodes of The Sarah Jane Adventures, the event runs on Saturday from 10am until 2pm. There is the chance to play the second in the Doctor Who The Adventure Game series, Blood of the Cybermen, which is released that day. Scenes from the game will play on the big screen there'll be a limited supply of free post cards and posters available.

New Royal Mint MedalsBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 June 2010 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The Royal Mint have released a collection of Monster Medals to tie in with series five of Doctor Who:
To celebrate the new Doctor Who series and the arrival of the new race of Daleks, BBC Worldwide and the Royal Mint teamed up to create this amazing new Doctor Who collectable medal. Each medal is presented in a colourful gift card containing information relevant to the character while the pop–in blister allows you to examine both sides of the collectable.

First three in the collection are the aforementioned Dalek, plus a Weeping Angel and a Smiler, as seen below:

Further medals of the Doctor, Amy and Winder will be available in the collection soon.

Construction/DestructionBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 June 2010 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Building of the new BBC Studios at Cardiff Docks commenced yesterday. The press release reports:
Basic building work is due for delivery from the developer in summer 2011. Once the studios, offices and external filming lots are fully fitted out, filming will begin for Casualty and Pobol y Cwm in autumn 2011, with Doctor Who and The Sarah Jane Adventures moving from their current Upper Boat studios in 2012. The first episode of Casualty to be made in Wales will be on screens in early 2012.
The press release suggests that, as well as the forthcoming series six, series seven would also continue to be filmed at the current Upper Boat Studios, assuming the schedule follows the pattern of previous years (i.e. from Summer 2011 to Spring 2012).

Meanwhile, demolition has commenced on the BBC premises on Victoria Road in London, originally built on the site of TCC Condensers (seen in stories like The Invasion and Spearhead from Space) and subsequently used as rehearsal rooms in the production of many other classic Doctor Who stories. It is believed that the site will be developed into flats (a fate already received by the former BBC Visual Effects Unit site nearby!).

It has also been reported that the building that was once home to Shawcraft Models in Uxbridge is also threatened with demolition. Shawcraft built many specialist props for the early seasons of Doctor Who, most notably remembered for the original Daleks (you can find out more about the company in a feature on the Doctor Who DVD release of The Space Museum/The Chase).

The BBC in-house magazine Ariel published an article on the future of BBC Television Centre itself this week:
Even after it sells Television Centre, which it wants to do by 2013, the BBC hopes the building will 'live on' as part of a new creative hub in west London, chief operating officer Caroline Thomson has declared.

The listed landmark, which is about to celebrate its 50th anniversary, could form the centrepiece of a community of media organisations, performing arts groups, facility providers and even fashion houses, Thomson told a conference hosted by the BBC in White City today.

'Our vision is to turn this area [W12] into a global centre for London's creative industries with the BBC at its heart,' she said. 'In doing so, we shall be shaping an entire community, replacing the buzz of Television Centre with the buzz of an entire neighbourhood.

'We see the BBC as a catalyst for a regeneration project that will provide a range of jobs in a working environment designed for people to be as creative as possible. That means not just people who work for the BBC but all our partners and all the other media people who will be attracted to the area.'

Pennant Roberts 1940 -2010Bookmark and Share

Thursday, 24 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Pennant Roberts Doctor Who Director Pennant Roberts has died at the age of 69.

Pennant Roberts was well known as a director in British television working throughout the seventies and eighties on such classic programmes as The Onedin Line, Survivors, Angels, Blake's 7, Juliet Bravo, Tenko and Howards' Way.

For Doctor Who he directed six stories. His first, in 1977, was the fourth Doctor story The Face of Evil, which saw the introduction of the character of Leela played by Louise Jameson. He returned later in the year to direct The Sun Makers , and then a year later he directed the Douglas Adams story, The Pirate Planet. He directed another Douglas Adams story, Shada, which was intended to end the seventeenth series of the programme, but which was not completed due to industrial action at the BBC. Parts of the story were later used in twentieth anniversary story The Five Doctors.

In 1984 he was given the task of bringing back The Silurians and The Sea Devils in the Fifth Doctor story, Warriors of the Deep, and in 1985 his final story for the series was the sixth Doctor story, Timelash.

Louise Jameson worked with Roberts in both Doctor Who and Tenko. Speaking to Gallifrey Base and The Doctor Who News Page she paid this tribute.
I have the sad duty of posting you the message that the wonderful Pennant Roberts died on Tuesday June 22nd at 6.30pm. The passing was very peaceful and dignified and his loving wife, Betsan, was at the hospice. He had been bravely fighting cancer for a year. He helped shape my life, not just on screen but off it too, and I feel the loss of him more acutely than I can express. However his absence will be felt by many, many more in many, many ways. He had the gift of being able to bring out the best in people, be that in a rehearsal room or around a dinner table. In his own words ‘sorry to bow out early’. Rest in peace darling Pen.

Doctor Who Magazine 423Bookmark and Share

Thursday, 24 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who Magazine 423Doctor Who Magazine 423The latest edition of Doctor Who Magazine prepares for The Big Bang on Saturday as the magazine goes on set, braves the darkness of the Underhenge and talks to the people behind the finale of Doctor Who, including stars Matt Smith, and Karen Gillan, head writer Steven Moffat, director Toby Hayes and monster maker Neill Gorton.

Also in DWM 423
  • It's Payback Time
    We know what Steven Moffat thinks of the stars of Doctor Who – but what do they think of him? Executive Producer Piers Wenger asks Matt Smith and Karen Gillan what they really make of "the Mofferator" in a very different production notes.
  • Neighbours from Hell
    It was the unlikeliest flat share story ever, but The Lodger could have been even stranger? The magazine catches up with writer Gareth Roberts, who tells how he came up with his latest script, and what ideas didn’t make it onto TV. Plus, the stars of the show, Matt Smith and James Corden.
  • It's only Natural
    It’s all change for the TARDIS team as the Doctor and Amy uncover the dark secret deep within an alien jungle – but at what price? And will the Time Lord and Pond ever be the same again? Find out in Supernature Part 3, written by Jonathan Morris with art by Mike Collins.
  • Living in the Plastic Age
    They could be plastic, anything plastic – or they could look just like you. Join the Watcher as he reveals everything you need to know about the sinister Autons in the latest of his in-depth guides.
  • Turn to Stone
    Dalek operator Barnaby Edwards talks about his years of experience in operating the various designs of the universe’s most malevolent monsters.
  • Every Vote Counts
    Let everyone know what you thought of the latest season, as the magazine gives you the opportunity to rate the episodes in its annual season poll.
  • Reasons to be Cheerful
    The Happiness Patrol is put under the spotlight in The Fact of Fiction.
PLUS! All the latest official news, previews and reviews of all the latest DVDs and audio releases, prize-winning competitions for the cream of Doctor Who merchandise.

This issue comes with a giant-sized, double-sided poster, depicting the Daleks on one side, and the Doctor and Amy on the other.

TARDIS fetches over £10,000Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, 23 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who: TARDISThe TARDIS used by ninth Doctor Christopher Eccleston sold for £10,800, when auctioned at Bonham's earlier today.

The prop was one of several Doctor Who related items up for sale at the London auction house.

A console built for the Doctor Who exhibition at Longleat sold for £900 while a Cyberman helmet from the second Doctor stories Moonbase and The Tomb Of The Cybermen went for £7,800.

Two Daleks fetched £4,800 each and a model of K-9 was sold for £1,200.

The Sarah Jane Adventures - Series FourBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 23 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who Magazine has revealed the episode titles for the fourth series of The Sarah Jane Adventures, due to be shown in the UK this Autumn.

The series will again consist of six, two-part stories. A number of guest stars are also announced including Julian Bleach, who is playing the Nightmare Man, Cheryl Campbell, Cyril Nri, Julie Graham and of course Matt Smith and Katy Manning.

  • 1: The Nightmare Man
  • by Joseph Lidster
  • 2: The Vault of Secrets
  • by Phil Ford
  • 3: Death of the Doctor
  • by Russell T Davies
  • 4: The Empty Planet
  • by Gareth Roberts
  • 5: Lost in Time
  • by Rupert Laight
  • 6: Goodbye, Sarah Jane Smith
  • by Gareth Roberts and Clayton Hickman

Doctor Who: The Big Bang - ClipBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 23 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
A new clip from the final episode of the current series of Doctor Who, The Big Bang, has been made available via the official website.

Please don't click on the link unless you have seen The Pandorica Opens as it contains a major spoiler from that episode. The link is here.

An introduction to the episode from Matt Smith is also available.

Doctor Who - The Adventure Game - Part TwoBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 22 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who: The Adventure GamesThe second instalment of Doctor Who: The Adventure Game, will be called Blood of the Cybermen and will be available to download in the UK from Saturday 26th June via the BBC Site.

The details were announced at a special press launch in Scotland where writer, Phil Ford, one of the Executive Producers, Charles Cecil and voice of the Cybermen and Daleks, Nick Briggs, answered questions from around the country.

Two script extracts are available from the official site.

Extract One

Extract Two

The first part of the Adventure was released earlier in the month and has been downloaded over half a million times.

The Lodger - Final RatingsBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 22 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who: The LodgerFinal figures for Episode Eleven of Doctor Who, The Lodger, published by BARB show the story was watched by 6.44 million viewers.

On BBC One the programme got 5.98 million watching where it was the sixth most watched programme for the channel for the week. An additional 0.464 million watched on BBC HD and when added together the programme totalled 6.44 million viewers.

Final figures for ITV1 HD are not available, so a full top thirty programmes of the week can't be calculated. Doctor Who stands at 21st for the week without HD figures added. If HD figures are included, it would almost certainly rise to be the 20th most watched programme of the week.

The BBC Three Sunday repeat did not rank high enough to get into the top 30 for the week.

Full ratings for the series so far can be found in Gallifrey Base.

Doctor Who: The Pandorica Opens - Appreciation IndexBookmark and Share

Monday, 21 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who: The Pandorica OpensThe Appreciation Index figure for Episode Twelve of Doctor Who, The Pandorica Opens, was 88, highest of the series so far.

The Appreciation Index or AI is a measure of how much the audience enjoyed the programme. Any score over 85 is considered excellent. The score was the joint highest on any of the four main channels for the day.

The Sunday repeat on BBC Three was watched by 0.47 million viewers, with the last part winning its timeslot amongst the multi-channel stations.

With Sunday's overnight figures now available, Doctor Who is currently 16th for the week. This should rise considerably when the final figure is released next week.

Doctor Who Confidential recieved an AI of 85 on Saturday and the Sunday repeat was watched by 0.30 million viewers.

Australian ratings for Vincent and the DoctorBookmark and Share

Monday, 21 June 2010 - Reported by Adam Kirk
Vincent and the Doctor has debuted in Australia to strong ratings. TV Tonight reports that the episode averaged 895,000 viewers in the five major capital cities, again despite stiff competition from the commercial networks. It was the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's second-highest rating drama of the day coming a close third behind the series final of Agatha Christie's Poirot and the Sunday 7pm news. The corresponding Confidential Cutdown also rated an excellent 714,000 viewers in the five major capitals.

The Pandorica Opens - Overnight RatingsBookmark and Share

Sunday, 20 June 2010 - Reported by Jarrod Cooper
Episode Twelve of Doctor Who, The Pandorica Opens, got an audience of 5.9 million viewers for episode 12, The Pandorica Opens, according to unofficial overnight figures. 5.4 million watched on BBC One with an additional 0.5 million watching on BBC HD.

The episode was the most watched show of the day, with the World Cup on ITV1 only bringing in 5.2 million for the Cameroon v Denmark match.

Overall Doctor Who stands as the 14th most watched programme of the week, with just Sunday's figures to come. The programme is likely to get a boost when the final figures, including details for those who recorded the program for later viewing, are released next week and a top ten place is distinctly possible.

Doctor Who Confidential rated well with 0.62 million watching the programme on BBC Three, making it the 5th most watched programme of the day on multi-channel Television. An additional 0.14 million watched on BBC HD giving a total of 0.78 million viewers.

The Pandorica Opens - Press ReactionBookmark and Share

Sunday, 20 June 2010 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who: The Pandorica OpensNB: Some links contain spoilers from the episode.

Press reaction to Doctor Who: Episode Twleve, The Pandorica Opens, has begun appearing with the Daily Telegraph calling the episode "Sensational, propelling the viewer on a gripping adventure with plenty of shocks and surprises, leavened with more emotional and humorous material for a heady mix."

The Express calls the story "classic fairytale, aimed, as always, at a family audience, with Matt Smith and Karen Gillan now complete in their respective roles". They make a plea to the BBC to safeguard the budget for the series saying it is one of the crown jewels and should be protected.

Den of Geek say "How good was that? We’ve been salivating at the thought of what Steven Moffat could do with a finale two-parter since he first got the top job on Doctor Who. The answer? A lot". The Guardian blog says you need to watch this episode at least three times to get a proper handle on every little bit that's going on. Thing is, you'll want to.