Radio TimesBookmark and Share

Friday, 1 December 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Radio Times (9-15 December 2017) (Credit: Radio Times)This year's annual Doctor Who cover for the Radio Times appears on the issue covering 9th-15th December, and features an image of Peter Capaldi in an 'exclusive souvenir issue'.

Inside the magazine there is a six page feature on the show, including interviews with the show's outgoing lead writer Steven Moffat, alternative first Doctor David Bradley, plus an item on Radio Times coverage of the twelfth Doctor's era over the last few years.

Speaking about the arrival of the new Doctor in the form of Jodie Whitaker, Moffat explained why casting a woman hadn't occured when he first took over, even though he had previously introduced a female Doctor in the form of Joanna Lumley in The Curse of Fatal Death:
If we’d replaced David Tennant with a woman it wouldn’t have worked. It was too early. We could have replaced Matt Smith with a woman, given that his Doctor was more sexless and less of a lad, but then I got obsessed with seeing Peter in the Tardis.
Bradley thinks she is a good casting choice:
When I heard it was Jodie I thought, "Well, that's perfect" - because she's got the range and she's funny. They just need to keep that sense of fun and not forget the comic energy.

You can read the full interviews in the Radio Times, on general release in the United Kingdom tomorrow, 2nd December.

The 'legendary' Christmas edition of the Radio Times (23rd December - 5th January) will of course feature Twice Upon A Time, and will be on sale from Saturday 9th December in London and the South East, and nationwide by Tuesday 12th December.





Access All Areas - Doctor Who SpecialBookmark and Share

Thursday, 23 November 2017 - Reported by Marcus
As the Twelfth Doctor approaches his final story, BBC Radio Two is to broadcast a two hour special documentary looking behind the scenes of Doctor Who.

Broadcast on Thursday 21 December at 8pm, the programme sees Jo Whiley gain exclusive access to the Doctor Who team. She catches up with the stars of the series on the set - including Pearl Mackie, David Bradley, Exec Producer Steven Moffat, and the Doctor himself, Peter Capaldi. She also hears from outgoing companion Matt Lucas, and digs into the BBC Doctor Who archive.

There will be stories from behind the scenes, including how Lucas approaches being recognised by fans; the radical ways in which Mackie's life has changed; Pele’s reaction to signing a Brazil shirt for the Doctor and how Doctor Who has always been with Peter Capaldi - from dressing up as a Dalek as a child to karaoke singalongs to The Killers (all in the name of getting into character).

Plus, Radio 2 listeners will find out which member of the team has a penchant for Chas and Dave

BBC Radio 2 can be heard worldwide via the BBC Radio iPlayer.




Moments in Time - Return of the CybermenBookmark and Share

Thursday, 31 August 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Cover Issues 31 August 1967 (Credit: Radio Times)Moments in TimeFifty years ago today, on Thursday 31st August 1967, sixpence would buy you the new issue of Radio Times, and for the fifth time Doctor Who featured on the front cover.

Previous covers had marked the start of Marco Polo, The Web Planet, The Chase and Power of the Daleks, but this was the first cover to herald the start of a new season for the programme, returning in the coming weekend for its fifth year.

The focus of the cover was firmly on the adversaries the Doctor would face in the new series. The Cybermen were returning for the third time in less than a year. Inside an article promised new adventures along with a new threat, the Cybermats.

Doctor Who had undergone a complete transformation over the past year. When Season four began in September 1966 William Hartnell was still clinging onto the controls of the TARDIS, along with companions Ben and Polly, played by Anneke Wills and Michael Craze. Now twelve months later there was a completely new team in the ship led by Patrick Troughton, aided by the young Scottish piper Jamie McCrimmon played by Frazer Hines, and the recently orphaned girl from the 19th Century, Victoria played by Deborah Watling.

The risk of recasting the series had paid off and the series had built a loyal following who would await each adventure to unfold on Saturday Evenings. Ratings had stabilized with around 7 million tuning in each week, up from the 5 million the series was getting at the end of the Hartnell era. Audience appreciation was also up by around 10 points to average in the high fifties.

Behind the scenes, change was also afoot. Producer Innes Lloyd was keen to move on having been in charge of the series since April 1966. He was lining up actor and writer Peter Bryant as his replacement.

One loss the production team was having to deal with was the decision of Terry Nation to withdraw the use of the Daleks from Doctor Who and new monsters were needed. Over the next year, viewers would be introduced to The Ice Warriors and the Yeti. As season five launched, the first story of the series was safely on tape, having been recorded at the end of the Season Four production block. After a short holiday, the Team would soon be spending a week in Snowdonia, filming scenes for the upcoming story The Abominable Snowman. Before long they would be back in the comfort of Lime Grove Studio D ready to slip back into the old familiar pattern of 4 days rehearsal before recording each episode on a Saturday evening.

In 1967 Saturday night television looked very different to today. After live sport in Grandstand, Juke Box Jury assessed the hits of the day. Doctor Who then led the BBC 1 Saturday evening schedule, which was still very much dominated by American imports. Match of the Day carried the football highlights and after a talk on the history of the Trade Union Movement, the station closed down and the nation went to bed at 11.15pm.

Credit: Radio Times Credit: Radio Times




An Evening In with Peter CapaldiBookmark and Share

Sunday, 29 January 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Jo Whiley on BBC Radio 2 (Credit: BBC)Peter Capaldi will be a guest on BBC Radio 2's Jo Whiley show tomorrow evening (30 Jan) at 8:00pm (GMT), "picking his favourite tracks and filling us in on all the latest news from the Doctor Who set.".

In addition, Tuesday's show will be dedicated to music that has appeared in Doctor Who, including groups such as The Beatles, The Streets and The Chordettes.

Both shows will be available to listen to worldwide via the BBC iPlayer.


David Tennant appeared on the show to chat about his experiences of being the Doctor back in November 2013, during the show's 50th Anniversary celebrations.




Christmas Issue of Radio TimesBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 7 December 2016 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Radio Times Christmas issue (17-30 Dec 2016) (Credit: Radio Times)Today sees the nationwide publication of the 'lengendary' double edition of Radio Times, which features a second interview with Peter Capaldi in as many weeks!

Speaking about where he would go if he could travel in time, the Doctor Who star reflected on his pop-idols:
I never saw enough of David Bowie. And the last time he played in London, I had to give up my ticket as I had a job in Eastern Europe. My wife called me from the concert, held her phone up and let me hear the entirety of Heroes. It cost around 40 quid to hear that one song.

(The Beatles) were the soundtrack to our lives, growing up in the 1960s. I remember hearing She Loves You everywhere. That song is like a time machine. ... It came out in 1963 when I was five. Also in 1963, Doctor Who started on the BBC, and the Beatles appeared on it in 1965...

The full item can be read in Radio Times, which also includes an interview with UK Prime Minister, Theresa May on all things Christmas: speaking about what her TV schedule for Christmas would include, she said:
I always like to see Doctor Who on Christmas night, if possible, and a nice Agatha Christie to curl up with. David Suchet was a great Poirot – he got him to a T.

As well as the interviews, the magazine includes an exclusive photo-shoot featuring "Doctor Who in New York" with Peter Capaldi, Matt Lucas (Nardole) and Justin Chatwin (The Ghost), plus the last part of their competition to win a piece of exclusive artwork.

And, of course, full details on this year's Christmas Special, The Return of Doctor Mysterio!

Radio Times New York photoshoot (from 17-30 Dec 2016 double issue) (Credit: Radio Times)

The double-issue of Radio Times is on general sale nationwide today.





Radio Times features interview with Peter CapaldiBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 22 November 2016 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Radio Times (26 Nov - 2 Dec 2016) (Credit: Radio Times)The latest edition of the Radio Times, out today, features an interview with Peter Capaldi in the lead up to this year's Christmas Special, The Return of Doctor Mysterio.

The interview covers a variety of his views, including on being an older Doctor and how he sees the character. Commenting about how some feel that the show has now become too complicated for younger viewers, he said:
The thing about Doctor Who is the constitution of the audience. It covers a huge age range, so you have to entertain little kids and you have to entertain hipsters and students, and middle-aged men who should know better. So sometimes there is a kind of metaphysical and intellectual aspect to it, which is more to the fore than other times. But generally we just blow up monsters. There are some moments when you feel, that’s a little bit silly, or that’s a bit mawkish or whatever, but then you realise, that’s for children. You would be a fool not to play to them, because it’s their show.


The magazine also features a competition to win the piece of artwork below, taken from their Capaldi photoshoot; readers will need to answer four questions, with the first appearing in this week's and the rest over the next threw consecutive issues.

Radio Times - photoshoot artwork (26 Nov - 2 Dec 2016) (Credit: Radio Times)




Sixth Doctor returns to the airwavesBookmark and Share

Saturday, 28 May 2016 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The Crimes of Thomas Brewster (Credit: Big Finish / Anthony Lamb)Colin Baker becomes the 'current' Doctor again on British airwaves today as BBC Radio 4 Extra begin a new run of Big Finish adventures on the radio, Saturdays at 6:00pm (repeated midnight). The Crimes of Thomas Brewster kicks off the run, broadcast in two parts over the next couple of weeks. The story also features Maggie Stables as the sixth Doctor's long-time audio companion Evelyn and guest stars David Troughton as Raymond Gallagher.

This weekend also sees a repeat of the 50th Anniversary programme Who Made Who, which was presented by Tracy Ann Oberman and featured a variety of interviews and special documentaries, plus the mockumentary from 2004, Whatever Happened to Susan Foreman?, which starred Jane Asher as the titular character whose life is examined some years after being left on Earth... The three hour programme follows on after Doctor Who at 7:00pm (and is also on at 9:00am this morning).


Both The Crimes of Thomas Brewster and Who Made Who should be available to listen to over the next 29 days via the BBC iPlayer.




Christmas ScheduleBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 9 December 2015 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Radio Times Festive Double Issue (19 Dec 2015 - 2 Jan 2016) (Credit: Radio Times)The Christmas double edition of the Radio Times is now generally available, containing all the programming details of the main UK channels for the festive period - including of course the premiere of The Husbands of River Song on Christmas Day itself at 5:15pm, which features as one of "the very best of TV, Film and Radio this Christmas".

The magazine also features a two page interview with Peter Capaldi, during which he talks about the departure of Jenna Coleman this year:
I found it really sad, as Jen's a great girl an a great actress. I used to love being in the Tardis with her, we'd just have a laugh, you know? And that's all I want out of work, I'm afraid, to go along and have a nice time. While playing the most iconic character in the history of British television!

As well as this Christmas's new episode, Doctor Who continues to be available to watch on other digital channels/ After a short break Watch returns with a daily dose of the tenth Doctor from the 20th December leading up to a double dose of Christmas specials on the day itself as he encounters The Next Doctor through to The End of Time; post-Christmas it's the turn of the eleventh Doctor to dominate the afternoon schedules. Meanwhile, Horror Channel continue their latest run though the 'classic' era, with Christmas Day seeing the fourth Doctor end up dealing with the Horror of Fang Rock.

However, there's more fourth Doctor action on BBC4 on the 28th/29th December as the channel broadcasts The Face of Evil! As Patrick Mulkern observes in the Radio Times:
The Face of Evil seems like a random selection from the archive, but BBC4 wanted a serial that aired in festive days of yore and this four-parter began on New Year's Day 1977.

Odds on Who


With the Christmas Day scheduled firmly locked down, bets are firmly in the running as to how those shows will fare with viewers. Here are the average odds across the various agencies at the time of writing:

Time        BBC One                              Odds     ITV                                Odds   
3:00pm The Queen 32/1
3:10pm Brave - Cameraman to the Queen -
4:10pm Countrywise Winter Wonderland -
4:35pm BBC News and Weather -
4:45pm Stick Man -
5:00pm For The Love Of Dogs 100/1
5:15pm Doctor Who 24/1
6:00pm ITV Evening News -
6:15pm Strictly Come Dancing 14/1 You've Been Framed With Bells On -
6:45pm Emmerdale 115/1
7:30pm Call The Midwife 26/1
7:45pm Coronation Street 27/1
8:45pm Eastenders 11/2 Downton Abbey 3/1
9:45pm Mrs Browns Boys evens
10:45pm Michael McIntyre's Big Christmas Show - Our Cilla 71/1


Mrs Brown's Boys is the runaway favourite at present which is unsurprising as it has been the highest rated show three years in a row, with second placed Eastenders topping the chart in 2010 and 2011. The odds currently place Doctor Who as the fifth most likely to top the chart: in 2009 The End Of Time (part one) arguably achieved the top spot on Christmas Day, when the combined viewers on BBC One (11.57m) and the simulcast BBC HD (0.47m) made a total of 12.05m versus The Royle Family's combined total of 11.92m and Eastenders of 11.67m.

Last year none of the Christmas shows managed to break the 10 million mark, with Doctor Who ending up in sixth place with its 8.28m viewers. Could Alex Kingston's return in The Husbands of River Song lead to the crown once again being in the show's grasp once the consolidated ratings are known? It won't be too long to find out, and in the meantime readers can watch out for the launch of our annual Guess the ratings competition soon!




Radio Times CoverBookmark and Share

Saturday, 28 November 2015 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Radio Times (5-11 Dec 2015) (Credit: Radio Times)As mentioned earlier this week, the latest edition of the Radio Times to be published, 5-11 Dec 2015, features a festive Doctor Who front cover, an annual tradition from since the series returned in 2005!

This edition covers both the finale of the current series, Hell Bent, and looks forward to the
forthcoming Christmas Special, featuring a three page interview with Steven Moffat, during which he discusses his shyness, how to replace Jenna Coleman and also on taking inspiration from other writers:
Some things you see on TV are so bad, you think you shouldn’t write for a week in case you’re contaminated. In case it’s got into your head. The sheer rubbishness of the dialogue and story construction. You have to detox. But you read a script by Russell [T Davies] and suddenly everything makes sense in an immaculate, clean way.

Talking about his own eventual departure and on finding on a worthy succesor to run the show, Moffat said:
That's an issue I'm actively engaged in. Everything is difficult in Doctor Who, including leaving. I'd never leave it in the lurch because it means too much to me. Let's not pretend it's not a big problem. But there will be a solution.


The 'legendary' Christmas double edition of the Radio Times (19th Dec - 1 Jan), featuring the 'legendary' Doctor Who Christmas Special, is due to be published in London/Midlands on 5th December, and on general sale from 9th December.





Russell T Davies defends the BBCBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 September 2015 - Reported by Marcus
Russell T Davis with Alison Graham at the Radio Times Festival (Credit: Maggie Gibbons) Russell T Davies has made a strong defence of the BBC and the licence fee and the values it stands for, but warned the battle may already be lost.

Speaking at the Radio Times Festival, he urged people to consider the alternatives to the compulsory licence fee, such as a subscription model and to look at the schedules of current subscriber services such as the American premium cable network HBO and see what subscribers get for their money. He said: "couple of high class dramas. No news. No soaps.no weather, no radio stations. Google their schedules and see if that is what you want?"

Davies was being interviewed by Alison Graham for the first ever Radio Times Festival, which is being held at Hampton Court in West London. He said his favourite memory of working on Doctor Who was the laughter he had. "It was hard work but we did have fun". He revealed he most enjoyed writing dialogue for Daleks. "They are so clever. I love them".

He also spoke of how proud he was of Doctor Who. "It's indestructible. Imagine if they tried to cancel it now. There would be riots in the streets".

Speaking on writing for the Doctor: "you get the secret of writing for the Doctor when you realise he is much cleverer than you are. Then it falls into place".

He talked about how he started in the industry and advised aspiring writers to just write. "get all the experience you can, not necessarily on your pet project but say for your local youth theatre".

He talked about his current project, a production of A Midsummer Night's Dream for the BBC. "It's something I've always wanted to do, he told the audience. It has a fantastic cast, and the whole play finishes with a joyous dance choreographed by Arlene Phillips. It's going to be on Saturday night in prime time. Only the BBC would do that".

Davies finished the session by talking to fans and signing autographs.

(Maggie Gibbons for the photo)




Radio Times looks forward to Series NineBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 15 September 2015 - Reported by Harry Ward
Radio Times: 19-25 September 2015 (Credit: Radio Times)Doctor Who once more features on the cover of this week's Radio Times, which is out in shops today.

The issue looks forward to the news series and talks to stars Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman, who discuss their on-screen relationship, the challenges of working on the series and the success of the show.

Jenna Coleman on the announcement of Peter Capaldi:
I’d no idea who would take over from Matt Smith, and when I was told it was Peter, it was one of those ‘aha, that makes sense – genius’ kind of moments. But the first thing he said to me was, ‘There will be no romance in the Tardis.’

Peter Capaldi on the challenges of working on Doctor Who:
It’s a difficult show to act. It goes from B-movie sci-fi to Freudian drama and tragedy. There’s romance, pantomime, humour and sadness, so you’re kept on your toes. I try not to be too romantic or sentimental. Sometimes Jenna will run down a corridor shouting, ‘Doctor, there’s a monster,’ and stuff. Part of the tradition is that sets wobble and you have to fight a giant spider made of rubber. I enjoy that. It’s not so well budgeted as viewers might think but it looks great because of the talent of the people working on it. 

Also in the new issue, Steven Moffat’s series 9 episode guide teases each of the twelve episodes in the new series.

NB: Later this month Frank Skinner will hosting a Doctor Who session at the Radio Times Festival at 7pm on Friday 25th September.

(with thanks to Radio Times)




Radio Times FestivalBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 9 June 2015 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Late September will see Hampton Court Palace host the first Radio Times Festival, celebrating some of the biggest shows on television and radio.

The four-day event takes place between the 24th and 27th September, and features a number of talks and presentations including, of course, Doctor Who, represented on the Friday afternoon by Peter Capaldi, Steven Moffat, Brian Minchin, and also Russell T Davies:

Radio Times Festival (24-27 September 2015) (Credit: Radio Times)
  • DOCTOR WHO - Friday 25th September, 2:30-3:30pm
    Doctor Who holds a unique place in British popular culture. Here, the Doctor himself, Peter Capaldi, is joined by creative chief Steven Moffat and executive producer Brain Minchin to talk Time Lords, Daleks and Cybermen. Together, they will reveal the inner workings of the Whoniverse.

  • RUSSELL T DAVIES - Friday 25th September, 4:00-5:00pm
    From busting social taboos with dramas such as Queer as Folk to inspiring the reboot of Doctor Who, Russell T Davies is one of Britain's most innovative screenwriters. Here he explains how he made the journey from Swansea schoolboy to one of the leading creative voices in television.

Details for these any of the other sessions will be available via the Festival website, with ticket sales commencing from noon today for Radio Times subscribers via phone or the website; general booking starts from 23rd June.




Big Finish Fourth Doctor Stories on BBC Radio 4 ExtraBookmark and Share

Saturday, 2 May 2015 - Reported by Marcus
Destination Nerva (Credit: Big Finish)The first season of Big Finish's Fourth Doctor adventures, is coming to BBC Radio 4 extra later this month.

The season starts with Destination Nerva, first released in January 2012, which reunites Tom Baker with his former companion Louise Jameson, in a story written and directed by Nicholas Briggs, and which sees the Doctor return to the location first seen in the 1975 story The Ark in Space

After saying their goodbyes to Professor Litefoot and Henry Gordon Jago, the Doctor and Leela respond to an alien distress call beamed direct from Victorian England. It is the beginning of a journey that will take them to the newly built Space Dock Nerva… where a long overdue homecoming is expected.

A homecoming that could bring about the end of the human race.
The series continues with The Renaissance Man, The Wrath Of The Iceni, Energy Of The Daleks, Trail Of The White Worm and The Oseidon Adventure.

Tom Baker previously revived the character of the Fourth Doctor in a series of stories for BBC Audiobooks, which were broadcast on Radio 4 extra in 2011. Since 2012 he has started in four seasons of Fourth Doctor stories for Big Finish, with a fifth Season planned for release next year.

The series begins on Radio 4 extra on Saturday 16th May at 6pm. Radio 4 extra can be heard globally on the BBC iPlayer.




Radio Times Nominated for Cover of the YearBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 28 April 2015 - Reported by Marcus
Radio Times (23-29 Aug 2014) (Credit: Radio Times)
The Radio Times cover, from the issue which announced the arrival of Peter Capaldi as The Doctor, has been nominated as the Cover of the Year by the PPA.

The Professional Publishers Association have listed the cover as one of ten nominated for the award. Radio Times was nominated last year for the cover celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who, but lost out to Metal Hammer when the results were announced.

This year Radio Times faces competition from The Big Issue, Crumbs, GQ, ShortList, Country Life, Elle, n, Red and Time Out.

Voting can be done via the PPA website.

The winner will be announced at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Park Lane in London's Mayfair on the evening of Thursday, July 9.