“Time of the Doctor” – The Second Trailer

A second trailer for “Time of the Doctor” has been released by the BBC. It’s similar (if not identical to the BBC America one). Not sure about the dodgy voiceover bloke though: might as well have got Peter Dickson in to do it. Completely detracts from what would otherwise have been a nice tease. However, it does seem to be fulfilling the promise that a lot of the loose ends from the Matt Smith era will be tied up, even to the extent of going back to “The God Complex“, to find out what was behind the door to “Room 11″.

And Now it’s Time for One Last Bow.

Clara “And now it’s time for one last bow. Like all your other selves. Eleven’s hour is over now. The clock is striking twelve’s”

Doctor Who fans rejoice! After the snippets of the Christmas Special, “The Time of the Doctor”, that have littered the general BBC One Christmas trails, it’s high time that Doctor Who got one of its very own. And here it is. Time to say Goodbye to Matt and Hello to Peter.

50th Anniversary Retrospective: “The Day of the Doctor”

Doctor “I could retire and be the curator of this place.”
Curator “You know, I really think you might.”
Doctor “I never forget a face.”
Curator “I know you don’t. And in years to come you might find yourself…revisiting a few. But just the old favourites, eh?”

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Whenever I watch Doctor Who, it has almost entirely been from the sofa of whichever house I happened to be living in at the time, although I do have memories of my childhood viewing technique of lying down on the floor, elbows under my head, with chin perched on my hands. Most of the time, viewing was a solitary experience. My parents, to this day, don’t really get it, and my brother was never a fan. I married in 2002 (during the wilderness years), over a year before the show’s triumphant return was even announced and nearly three years before “Rose” was broadcast. My wife had no idea what she was getting into, but she has enough taste in good television to sit and enjoy the new show with me. Having said that, I’m still not sure I could convince her to sit down and watch “Image of the Fendahl” or “The Romans” or somesuch. Given all this, it was beyond my comprehension to think that I would be watching the 50th anniversary special by leaving the “Official 50th Celebration” at the Excel with a bunch of other fans, many of whom were in Doctor Who costume, getting a cable car across the River Thames to the O2 arena, where we would watch the episode with 775 other fans on a screen 22-metres wide in glorious 3D. Not only that, there were more than 1,500 cinemas worldwide showing the same thing at the same time as it was simulcast in 94 countries and dubbed or subtitled into 15 other languages, watched by nigh-on 13 million people in the UK and who knows how many elsewhere. Not bad for kid’s show. But what to make of it all? The brief was not exactly a simple one: write an episode of the greatest television show that the world has ever seen that celebrates its dazzling, fifty-year heritage; that impresses dedicated fans of all ages as the centrepiece of the anniversary celebrations; that appeals to a large slice of an audience who have a take it or leave attitude to the show (the fools!); and paves the way to securing another half-century of Whovian goodness. It would not have been many people’s first response to this challenge, which had indeed been laid at the feet of Steven Moffat, to say, “Right. Let’s bring back the Zygons”. Continue reading

50th Anniversary Retrospective: Official Celebration Event

Doctor “Clara sometimes asks me if I dream. ‘Of course I dream’, I tell her, ‘Everybody dreams’. ‘But what do you dream about?,’ she’ll ask. ‘The same thing everybody dreams about,’ I tell her, ‘I dream about where I’m going.’ She always laughs at that: ‘But you’re not going anywhere, you’re just wandering about.’ That’s not true. Not anymore. I have a new destination. My journey is the same as yours, the same as anyone’s. It’s taken me so many years, so many lifetimes, but at last I know where I’m going. Where I’ve always been going. Home. The long way around.”

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The 22nd, 23rd, and 24th of November 2013 were like all the Christmas Eves, Christmas Days and Boxing Days rolled into one for Doctor Who fans fortunate enough to have procured themselves a ticket or three for the “Official 50th Celebration” at the Excel in London’s Docklands. Twenty-four thousand fans (so we were reliably informed by Nick Briggs) made their way to London’s Excel centre for the weekend of the 50th Anniversary where there was more than enough entertainment on offer to satiate the desires of the most hardened fans. After running a smaller Convention at the Millennium Centre in Cardiff in March of 2012, which mainly focussed on the modern era of the show, they took the lessons learnt from that and turned the dial up to Eleven. 24,000 attendees were split across three days, and each day was split into two streams, known not as Red Waterfall and Green Anchor but instead “Ice Warrior” and “Weeping Angel”, this made the logistics a little more manageable as, on the whole, these groups were largely kept apart, with the schedule of events being duplicated throughout the day at times that were appropriate for each stream. Continue reading

50th Anniversary Retrospective: Introduction

 

 

Steven Moffat. 22nd November 2013 (at Official 50th Celebration) “[Doctor Who] makes all other television look redundant. Which, let’s be honest about it… it is”

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I stood in a queue at the weekend with a bunch of people I’d never met before, and in all likelihood, will never meet again. Complete strangers brought together with a sole purpose: to go and celebrate fifty years of a daft old television show. I stood in many queues at the weekend, some for over an hour, some for less than five minutes but in every one (in Every. Single. One) there was chat, and greetings, and good wishes, and camaraderie. They were full of smiles and laughter and fair amount of fezzes and tweed too. There were fellow queuers who had flown in from New Zealand, the USA, Canada, Germany, Ireland, Scandanavia, and many more places to boot just to be there and say that they were there for the anniversary. I’d never been more proud to be a part of that community. Continue reading

Doctor Who Official 50th Anniversary Celebration -Day One

So, day one at the event of the millennium and here is a quick summary and hints and tips for those coming on Saturday or  Sunday. There’ll be more news in the comments when I think about them and over the course of the weekend. Follow me on Twitter to ask any questions (@fazzinchi)……

  1. Queues at the start were very long. I was in Ice Warrior stream so was asked to queue from the east. There were a few Weeping Angels over that side too and they were in a tiny queue. Not sure if that could be a bit of a cheat to shortcut the long queue as they might fix it by tomorrow.
  2. This queue vanished rapidly when tickets were scanned and lanyards distributed. Then the Celebration was yours to explore…. Unless you were an Ice Warrior, who then got corralled in to an aircraft hanger type space and made to wait for the SFX show. I’d recommend just dipping out after you get your lanyard if you have other WA events that you have tickets for.
  3. Screening Rooms and Classic Lounges were popular but the ones that I was in were 95% occupied. Very quick entry. Guest artists at these were happy to sign stuff and have pics taken for free afterwards.
  4. Autos. I queued for about 10 minutes to get Jenna’s sig first up. Cribbins later on was about 40 minutes. Multiple autos in one session were pretty straightforward too: just joining Mimi-queues in the auto area. it was a shame to see companions and other guests with no-one in their queues, but the staff wouldn’t let me pop over and get a cheeky auto without coughing up £15 at the Official Show Merchandise stand (Despite my winningest smile and charm)
  5. Loads of famous Whovians milling around and all more than happy to chat, sign, and have pics taken
  6. The retail area is awesome….. If anyone can give me 4 or 5 grand I might just be able to buy everything I wanted. Special word of praise to Big Finish for having special guests all day. Rubber toe, DWFiguirines, Big chief  all excellent? Peter Davison on hand at the Royal Mail stamp stand in the afternoon for getting your picture with him on a stamp.
  7. Grab a Show Planner early on and get your bearings. Knowing where you are rushing to is a big help.
  8. The official show brochure is £15 but v gorgeous
  9. The prop display section was packed all day until about 6pm at which time it was almost empty
  10. The BBC Shop had a huge queue all day long as did the Tardis console photo op (Didn’t see the set for this one)

“The Name of the Doctor” – Review: Redux

War Doctor “What I did, I did without choice.”
The Doctor “I know.”
War Doctor “In the name of peace and sanity.”
The Doctor “But not in the name of the Doctor.”

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Following a couple of duff episodes and, if I’m being brutally frank, a below-par Series 7b in general, one could be forgiven for thinking that all of everyone’s attention behind the scenes had been so drawn to the impending 50th Anniversary that some of the other episodes may not have got the attention they deserved. However, “The Name of the Doctor” was everything I could ever have wanted it to be. That is despite the fact that it didn’t really have much of a plot of which to speak. Essentially what happened was that the Paternoster Road gang were kidnapped by the Great Intelligence (and his Whispermen henchmen) and taken to the much mentioned Trenzalore, luring the Doctor and Clara to follow them against the Doctor’s better judgement. The reason being that Trenzalore is the location of the time-traveller’s grave amd time travellers should never, ever visit their own graves (Obviously?!). Once there, the Richard E Grant character jumps into the Doctor’s timeline (they don’t have bodies) to disrupt the Doctor’s history, and Clara jumps in afterwards to put it all right again. As if that wasn’t enough, the Doctor then completes the hat-trick by jumping in as well to rescue Clara. Continue reading

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